Close this search box.
A photo of a wrought iron bridge over the Canal Saint Martin.

10e Arrondissement of Paris – Entrepôt

Our tour of the arrondissements is back! Today we’re finally heading into the double digits with a look at the 10e arrondissement of Paris. I know that this district is unlikely to be on most people’s list of places to visit. There are no famous landmarks like the Eiffel Tower, and there are shockingly few museums. But the 10e arrondissement is a special slice of Paris with plenty to see, so let’s dive in.

Welcome to Paris!

Even if people do not plan on visiting the 10e arrondissement, millions still do every day. This is because the 10e is home to two very busy train stations: Gare du Nord and Gare de l’Est. In fact, Gare du Nord holds the title of the busiest train station in Europe (and third busiest in the world!), serving approximately 700,000 passengers per day. From Gare du Nord you can get to London (via the famed Eurostar), Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, and northern France. And from Gare de l’Est you can reach Luxembourg, Germany, and my personal favourite, the region of champagne. These two stations sit within a short walking distance of each other, and in many ways they can be seen as the gateway to Paris. If you’re taking a train to Paris, chances are you will pass through the 10e arrondissement.

Where the Locals Go

Unfortunately, passing through is the most that many people will do during their time in Paris. But that doesn’t mean that the 10e arrondissement is quiet by any means. On the contrary, the 10e is incredibly dense both in terms of inhabitants and jobs. In other words, this is where Parisians live and work in droves. As a result, the whole area has a uniquely different feel from the centre districts of the city. From the covered markets of Saint-Quentin and Saint-Martin, to the beautiful Jardin Villemin, the 10e has a distinctly local vibe going on. If you want to know what it’s like to live in the city of light, definitely head to the 10e arrondissement.

Canal Saint-Martin

Speaking of local vibes, the 10e happens to be home to one of my favourite spots in Paris: the Canal Saint-Martin. This waterway was built in the early 19th century by Napoléon to bring more freshwater into the city, and it connects the Canal de l’Ourcq to the River Seine. Today, the Canal Saint-Martin is one of the most popular places in Paris to gather and hang out. The areas around the canal are packed with trendy restaurants and bars, and the canal itself is always lined with hundreds of picnics of wine and cheese. The canal is also crossed by beautiful iron bridges that have been featured in many a film and painting. Forget the River Seine. If you want to drink with the locals, head to the Canal Saint-Martin.

Fun fact. Every 15 years the canal is drained and fully cleaned. And each time the canal is drained, a veritable treasure trove of objects are discovered. The last cleaning took place in 2016, during which time hundreds of bicycles, scooters, shopping carts, cell phones, and wine bottles were removed. Prior cleanings revealed casings from World War I, rifles, and even dozens of cars. I wonder what the next cleaning will unearth?

Hidden Gems

Musée du Chocolat – A museum on the history of chocolate that includes a live demonstration of chocolate making by a trained chef.

Hôpital Saint-Louis – I truly hope you don’t have to go to a hospital while you are visiting Paris. But if you pass by the Hôpital Saint-Louis, be sure to visit its public garden that was built at the same time as Place des Vosges in the Marais. The garden is just as beautiful, but with a fraction of the crowds.

Porte Saint-Denis and Porte Saint-Martin – Two of the four triumphal arches of Paris are located in the 10e arrondissement, and they are just as impressive as their more famous cousins.

Cour des Petites Écuries – Translates to the Courtyard of the Little Stables and named after the fact that this used to be the location of the royal stables in Paris. Today, this courtyard and passageway are packed with amazing bars, restaurants, and brasseries that only the locals know about.

Want to read more about the arrondissements of Paris? Click HERE.

Laura Moore is a professional storyteller who loves history and the many stories that make Paris one of the most fascinating cities in the world. Join one of her signature tours to learn the story of a city.