2.55pm // Isabel Marant
French superstar designer Isabel Marant has one of her many Parisian shops in the house on the other side of the streets. The window displays here are always worth a look, and if you have been longing to buy one of her iconic designs, now is the time.
Isabel Marant // 47 Rue de Saintonge // Mon 11am-7pm, Tue-Sat 10.30am-7.30pm // website
3pm // Merci
No visit of Le Marais is complete without spending some time at Merci. It might look like your regular high-end concept store at first glance, but Merci is actually much more than that.
Inside, you'll find some great furniture, fashion and lifestyle products. We also really love the affordable jewelry here! There are also two cafés that serve healthy and very delicious food and drinks.
But it's the concept behind it that makes this shop truly unique. Merci was founded by Marie-France and Bernard Cohen, the people behind the luxury children's clothing brand Bonpoint. After selling their company at the height of its success, they decided to give back and founded Merci ('Thank you'). All profits the store makes go directly to a charity that gives back to underprivileged women and children. Buying fabulous things has never felt so good!
Merci // 111 Boulevard Beaumarché // Mon-Sat 10am-7pm // website
3.20pm // French pharmacies
Let's walk back to the Rue Vieille du Temple to the old Jewish quarter. On your way (and, really, throughout the whole day) you'll notice that Paris is full of Pharmacies. The reason is quite simple: Apart from your regular Aspirins, French pharmacies are stock-full of amazing beauty products, and there's a big market for that here. (You know something is popular when Gwyneth Paltrow writes about it on her website.)
If you are looking for a unique souvenir or want to make someone at home very happy, head into one of the many pharmacies and stock up on some of the amazing products that are quite hard to find in other parts of the planet. Your cheat sheet: Everybody goes for Bioderma Crealine H2O Micelle Solution, arguably the best make-up remover in the world; Embryolisse moisturizer and Homeoplasmine cream. Don't worry, this won't break your bank, these products are actually very affordable.
3.40pm // La Perle
We're passing by La Perle now, a charming bar and bistro that gained notoriety when designer John Galliano was recorded here makes hateful remarks and thus lost his position as head designer for Dior.
As you might expect, La Perle is huge with the fashion crowd, and at night it's a great spot for people watching with a side of wine. But for now, let's continue our tour of the area.
La Perle // 78 Rue Vieille du Temple // Mon-Sun 6.30am-2am // website
3.45pm // Repetto
Continuing down the street, have a quick look into Repetto. This company started out as an exclusive producer of dancing clothes, and to this day, dancers everywhere love their high-quality designs. But that is not the reason we point this shop out.
You could argue that Repetto was also the company that introduced ballet flats as everyday shoes. To this day, if you see a French woman wearing them, chances are she got her shoes from here.
Repetto // 51 Rue des Francs Bourgeois // Mon-Sat 10.30am-7.30pm, Sun 12pm-7.30pm // website
3.50pm // Rue des Rosiers // Place des Vosges
A 'Surf in Paris' sweater from the shop Cuisse de Grenouille.
French pharmacy products.
Cheap Eiffel Tower key hangers from one of the many street vendors (5 for 1 Euro!).
10 Days in Paris: The best parties and events in the next 10 days. Link
Le Fooding: Reviews for the best restaurants in town. (French only) Link
Paris Metro App: A free App for all your public transport needs. Works offline! Link
We finally arrived at Rue des Rosiers, the center of Jewish life in Le Marais. It's a fascinating glimpse into old traditions when you walk around here, with old bookshops, specialized bakeries and traditional shops. Lots of people swear that you can get the best Falafel in town here.
Find your way to Place des Vosges for a little bit more of sightseeing. One of the five 'royal squares' of Paris, Place des Vosges is often called one of the most beautiful squares in town. We can see why…
Let's leave Le Marais and head over to a very different part of town. Once again, your stack of Metro tickets will come in handy. We have quite a ride ahead of us. Take the M8 from Chemin Vert, just a short walk from Place des Vosges. After four stops, you arrive at the station Strasbourg Saint-Denis. There, change into the M4 and go all the way north to Château Rouge.