Paris and cafe culture go hand-in-hand. If you’re visiting this romantic city, it’s a give-in that you’ll notice a lively cafe scene. Tables and chairs spill onto sidewalks, and smartly dressed Parisians sip coffee as they chat. Well-dressed waiters deliver baked goods to couples who look in love. In Paris, cafes are where the life is. So, book your taxi from the airport straight to one of these brilliant cafes.
Want to skip right to most classic, Parisian cafe in the city? Start at Le Select. It’s a well-known and loved cafe-brasserie in the heart of Montparnasse. This cafe has certainly earned its reputation, especially because of its former patrons. Famous socialites like Hemingway, Picasso, and F. Scott Fitzgerald lingered over a hot mug here in their day.
Cafe de Flore
This has been a cafe staple since World War II. It hasn’t changed much over the years, except for the clientele. While it used to be a smokey hangout for artists and students, it’s now frequented by tourists and the upper class. With large mirrors and red booths, Cafe de Flore still has a similar ambience as before. Even if you don’t like spots for tourists, don’t write this spot off. It once was a safe haven for discussions between the likes of de Beauvoir and Sartre you know!
Have some history with your coffee at the oldest cafe in Paris. It definitely looks the part with antique paintings, opulent chandeliers, and a sophisticated atmosphere. The cafe was founded in 1686, and was frequented by prominent figures of the time.Furthermore, while you’re enjoying your espresso, you might find yourself in the same seat that Benjamin Franklin or Voltaire once sat.
Café des Deux Moulins
Familiar with the movie Amélie? This 2001 film by director, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, is what made this place famous. Amélie is considered a cult classic, and several of the movie’s scenes were played out in this location. Today, the cafe is decorated with paraphernalia and photos from the movie, and is a popular spot for tourists.
Café de la Paix
This cafe looks more like a museum than a coffee shop. And in a way, it kind of is. The city declared it a historic site in 1975, and locals and tourists have been making a point to visit ever since. The cafe has been the setting for poems, paintings, and films. It was once a popular spot for local writers like Emile Zola and Guy de Maupassant. While it may seem a little crowded, definitely don’t skip this cafe.
After you’ve visited the classic cafes, it’s time to check out the modern versions. Le Barbouquin is located in the hip neighbourhood of Belleville, and is covered in mosaics and graffiti artwork. It’s part coffee shop, bookstore, bar, and library. The food is said to be pretty delicious too!
Another modern favourite, this quaint cafe is located near the canal. It’s considered ‘hipster’ by many, as the craft coffee selection is very refined. Their coffee comes from the local roaster, Belleville Brûlerie, which is well-known to Parisian coffee aficionados. They have a small lunch menu, and a line-up of house-made pastries too.
A visit to Paris isn’t complete without experiencing the cafes. So, get ready to get caffeinated and give these a try. You can book your taxi from Charles de Gaulle Airport here.