EPISODE 7: If you thought you knew Paris well, think again.
Corey Frye, or as we call him – the Paris Whisperer, is an American tour guide who knows every nook and cranny of the city. We put him to the test to name the unmissable spot in each of the 20 arrondissements.
Listen below, and scroll for some pictures and highlights.
1st arrondissement: Head inside the Louvre
“You’d be hard pressed to find more beautiful building interiors – forget about the permanent collection.”
It’s the very first café in Paris, founded in 1686, and offers unmissable French revolution memorabilia upstairs.
7th arrondissement: Take in La Fontaine de Mars
It’s a beautiful little fountain on Rue Saint-Dominique dedicated to Mars, the god of war. And it’s just down the road from the Eiffel Tower. Can’t find it? It’s right night to a cafe of the same name.
A picture of the fountain on a 1910 postcard. Photo: Siren-Com/WikiCommons
8th arrondissement: Find the hidden café at the Petit Palais
A lot of people don’t know that entry is free, and the trick here is to go into the interior courtyard where’s a great little café. It’s one of my best unknown coffee hotspots in Paris.
Photo: Patrick Giraud/WikiCommons
9th arrondissement: Visit the Opera house
It’s only €11 to get in and you’re free to roam about. You’ve got chandeliers, painted ceilings, marble staircases, and the origins of the Phantom of the Opera.
10th arrondissement: Stroll along the Canal Saint-Martin
It’s always described as up and coming, but it has arrived now. Have a coffee at Ten Belles cafe.
A new one in Bastille. It’s a working café with house cats, you have your coffee and a crumpet with little cats playing around. It’s great for families bringing kids to Paris.
12th arrondissement: Walk the Promenade plantée
Former elevated railway track that’s now a walk stretching out into the 12th – and no tourists ever find it. It’s very nice for a date.
13th arrondissement: Eat Chinese food at Chinatown
Head to the south eastern part of the 13th for the best Chinese food in town, it’s fantastic.
14th arrondissement: Head into Catacombs
You’ve got to do the catacombs. When you pay as a tourist there’s a mile’s worth of tunnels – but there’s actually around 200 miles around Paris.
15th arrondissement: Check out the Unesco Building
The headquarters of Unesco has beautiful gardens and impressive architecture – and a lot of people don’t realize it. Ok, the building is technically on the border of the 15th and 7th, but that doesn’t mean you should miss it!
You can stand in front of Le Bateau-Lavoir and know that Picasso’s artistic career started there. You can’t go inside, but you can stand in a cute little square out the front and contemplate being in the footsteps of one of the greats.
19th arrondissement: Experience the Bassin de la Villette
Check out the boats anchored on the canal there, the “péniches”, some of which are restaurants, cafes, some are bookshops, just walk up and down along the waterside.
20th arrondissement: Take in the Père Lachaise cemetery
It’s like an outdoor sculpture gallery over 100 acres. You’ll see all the famous tombs – Oscar Wilde, Jim Morrisson, Edith Piaf – but it’s like a park too. Some people call it the 21st arrondissement.
And here are few excerpts from the show in video form: