Best Markets in Paris

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Markets in Paris

Back in the 1950s-70s, a lot of cities around the world decided to ‘improve’ things and moved their street markets outside of town. Paris was foolish and decided to keep its markets alive and well in the city streets. It was a ‘mistake’ that many subsequent generations of Parisians and tourists alike have welcomed! The markets here are in many cases in exactly the same locations they occupied for centuries and they’re a part of life. Whether it’s foodstuffs, horticulture, clothes, antiques, bric-a-brac, shoes or just about anything else, you’ll find it here in the markets. Don’t expect rock-bottom prices because that’s not really what markets here are about. They’re about farmers and artisans bringing their fresh and unique products into the city to sell, so they don’t pretend they’re going to be able to undercut the supermarkets.

Shopping here is an experience that’s as much about leisure as it is procurement, as you’ll know when you’ve started and finished your market tour with some form of refreshment or other! Markets can be crowded and some are rather more aimed at tourists and expats than locals – but your Withlocals local expertise will help you to differentiate between them. Apart from antiques and flea markets, ‘the price is the price’ and haggling isn’t expected. You can frown and walk away and if the person offers you a discount then fine but don’t make below-ticket offers unless you’re invited to. Above all – enjoy!

Top shopping experiences in Paris

Best of Paris tour: Highlights & Hidden Gems

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The Secret Passages Tour

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Le Marais Private Tour: Aromas & Scents

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Top 10 French Markets in Paris

  • Marché Richard Lenoir. One of the city’s top markets with incredible food as well as other products. There’s even on-site entertainment through street musicians and a great ambiance.
  • Marché les Enfants Rouges. The city’s oldest covered market with origins going back 400 years. This is one of the relatively few places in Paris where street food is a ‘thing’.
  • Marché Mouffetard. True, parts of this are touristy but on the ancient cobbled street sections you’ll find a more authentic experience in incredible surroundings.
  • Puces de Saint Ouen. This is the best known of Paris’ flea markets. It’s a potential gold-mine for cheap antiques and bric-a-brac but there are also plenty of fakes and rip-offs on offer too. A local should be able to point out some of the better dealers.
  • Bastille and Popincourt. A sort of twinned market in which each takes turns in opening. Fantastic foodstuffs in a colourful location.
  • Monge Market. An odd name but it has a very village-like atmosphere. Great food and a touch of the exotic too with Indian and other Asian food stalls amidst the traditional French.
  • Saxe-Breteuil Market. Best known for its fantastic French country foodstuffs, its location is incredible – right alongside the Eiffel Tower! A visit there is definitely one of the best things to do in Paris!
  • Marché d’Aligre. A very authentic market which sells everything including a lot of food with a north African influence. It’s bustling, crowded (some pushing and shoving might be predicted) and not at all pretentious.
  • Saint Pierre. For a complete change, why not try this market that specialises in fabrics? Quite incredible and you may see some big-name designers there too.
  • Dejan. An African market in the heart of Paris! Colourful and exotic.

Top eating experiences in Paris

French Dinner for Food Lovers

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Best of Paris tour: Highlights & Hidden Gems

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The Secret Passages Tour

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3 Great Markets in Paris

  • Les Puces de Montreuil. Not as pretty as some of Paris’ flea markets but it has ‘street-cred’ and a reputation of being the place where you’re most likely to find real gems and bargains.
  • Raspail organic market. It probably has to be admitted that Paris has dragged its heels a little in terms of organic and vegetarian cuisines but you’ll find some very good organic food in trendy surroundings in this location.
  • Fleurs et aux Oiseaux. Located on the Ile de la Cité in the heart of Paris, the flower market is open all the week and on Thursday it expands to include caged birds. Perhaps not for those who have very strong feelings about animal rights, it’s still an amazing experience.

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Paris Favourite Food tour: the 10 Tastings

Michel was a delightful and gracious guide. Due to circumstances over which we had no control our original time slot had to be changed, and he worked with us to find an agreeable alternative. He shared not only tastings, but the history of the Marais area. The 10 tastings were delightful and varied. His knowledge of wines enhanced those tastings. I highly recommend his tour

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French Dinner for Food Lovers

Inka and Sebastien made my short stay in Paris quite enjoyable. Dinner with them included great conversation, laughs, wine, and, of course, great food! At first I thought it would be awkward meeting two strangers for dinner -- boy was I wrong! They made me feel like part of the family -- so much so I didn't want to leave. Warm, inviting, and knowledgeable about so many things which kept the conversation flowing. When I'm back in Paris I plan on joining them again through WithLocals.

If you want to walk away from your Paris trip smiling with good memories ... see Inka and Sebastien.

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Paris with a Photographer: Stroll, Taste, Click

I had never done a shooting tour with anyone before, so when I booked I wasn't sure what to expect. Joao was very cheerful and friendly from the time he shook hands with us till he said bye. We walked the steps of this talented photographer in literally his backyard. Long-time a local in Montmarte neighborhood, Joao knew the history behind the local stores, the streets and the community. He interrupted his stories to only take photos of us next to some iconic features of the town, as well as with the view from Sacre Coeur as the backdrop. I just received my edited photos, which all look stunning. Highly recommended experience and tour guide in Paris!