Sinuous and narrow streets, old tenements and tiny squares. Stairs which rise to the sky and seem to have no end. Small shutters, colourful facades and secret alleys. Everything around had an unusual vibe of which the greatest novelist wouldn’t be ashamed. That’s exactly what I felt during my first walk through the Montmartre district.
On the other hand, sometimes there’s a significant difference between what you feel and what you see. Nowadays, Montmartre could be described as a very touristic and crowded place with shops and street markets everywhere. If you want to explore this area, you should forget about a quiet walk through the narrow streets. Thus so, I decided to write only about the unique atmosphere of this place and ignore things like crowds of tourist or sellers. Sometimes the greatest spots are located far away from the centre and have to be discovered, aren’t they? 🙂
The beginning of my road to Montmartre was at the Pigalle metro station. It’s a separate district but situated in the neighbourhood. In the Pigalle area, it’s worth to see among others one of the most famous cabarets in the world, Moulin Rouge.
If you go from the Pigalle Square through the Houdon street, a few metres away you can notice the St-Jean de Montmartre church. It’s an art nouveau building from XIX century. It’s interesting especially for the architecture lovers, because of the reinforced concrete skeleton which creates this construction.
The Less Abbesses metro station is located vis-à-vis the St-Jean de Montmartre church. In particular, it’s worth to see the glass-covered entrance.
The Montmartre name means “mountain of the martyr”. There are a lot of different legends about this place and some of them were written on the stone tablets that you can still find near the numerous monuments.
Sacre-Coeur is the primary destination on Montmartre for the majority of visitors. When you stand at the foot of the enormous hill, the view is dreamlike. In the morning, you can be amazed by the view of Sacre-Coeur in the rising sun. In the evening, the building is illuminated by moonlight and streets lanterns. The Sacre-Coeur Basilica fascinates because of its size but, what’s more, by its beautiful architecture and precise adornments.
To reach the summit you have to climb the high stairs but there are many places to have a rest or just enjoy the view.
Montmartre has an incredible atmosphere – it can be attractive and intriguing at the same time.
Have you ever visited the Montmartre hill? Share with me your experiences in the comments below!