Paris’ Arrondissements

In January 1860 Napoleon III divided Paris into twenty districts called arrondissements. They are still in existence today and are very commonly referred to when it comes to hotels and attractions so having at least a basic understanding of them is essential. The districts start at the center of Paris and spiral out in a clockwise motion.

The names of the arrondissements can be written several different ways. On the street signs in Paris they will most commonly be written in Roman Numerals so it’s a good idea to learn them before you go as this will help you find your way around the city much more easily.

As with any major metropolitan city, Paris’ residents cover a multitude of different cultures and ethnic backgrounds. This, coupled with the history of the city, has naturally led to certain areas/neighborhoods having their own individual characteristics and charm. The arrondissements are no exception.

I’ve listed each arrondissement below (as well as some of the different ways it can be written). I have included a brief description of the district, a list of some of the major attractions located in the district, and a map with the specific district highlighted for a visual reference. (Click on the map or text of each arrondissement to see it enlarged.)

1st Arr (I, 1e, 1ere, 1eme) – Louvre


2nd Arr (II, 2e, 2ere, 2eme) – Bourse


3rd Arr (III, 3e, 3ere, 3eme) – Marais: Part 1


4th Arr (IV, 4e, 4ere, 4eme) – Marais: Part 2


5th Arr (V, 5e, 5ere, 5eme) – Latin Quarter


6th Arr (VI, 6e, 6ere, 6eme) – Saint Germain


7th Arr (VII, 7e, 7ere, 7eme) – Eiffel Tower


8th Arr (VII, 8e, 8ere, 8eme) – Champs-Elysees


9th Arr (IX, 9e, 9ere, 9eme) – Galleries Layfayette & Printemps


10th Arr (X, 10e, 10ere, 10eme) – Canal St. Martin


11th Arr (XI, 11e, 11ere, 11eme) – Place de la Bastille


12th Arr (XII, 12e, 12ere, 12eme) – Bercy


13th Arr (XIII, 13e, 13ere, 13eme) – Place d’Italie


14th Arr (XIV, 14e, 14ere, 14eme) – Montparnasse


15th Arr (XV, 15e, 15ere, 15eme) – Porte de Versailles


16th Arr (XVI, 16e, 16ere, 16eme) – Trocadero


17th Arr (XVII, 17e, 17ere, 17eme) – Place de Clichy


18th Arr (XVIII, 18e, 18ere, 18eme) – Montmarte


19th Arr (XIX, 19e, 19ere, 19eme) – Parc de la Villette


20th Arr (XX, 20e, 20ere, 20eme) – Pere-Lachaise Cemetery




Facts About Paris, France

Below is a list of facts about Paris, France that I find interesting and think will help with your overall understanding and appreciation of the city.


The area that is now known as  Paris was founded around 250 BC by a Celtic tribe known as the Parisii.

The Monarchs of France ruled from the creation of the Kingdom in France in 486 AD to 1870 AD.

The flag of Paris, France is actually different from the flag of France itself. France’s current flag was inspired by the colors of Paris’ militia uniforms during the French Revolution. White is the traditional color of France and red and blue are the colors of Paris.

FlagsThe nickname “City of Light” comes from Paris being the center of the Age of Enlightenment and was later reinforced due to the city’s early placement of street lighting.

The date format for France is Day/Month/Year. Ex: May 11, 2013 would be written as 11/05/2013. This is very important to keep in mind if you’re planning on attending a show or event of any kind during your visit.

The Seine River flows through the heart of the city essentially splitting it in half. The northern side of the river is known as the Right Bank (la Rive Droite) and the southern side is known as the Left Bank (la Rive Gauche). You will see these terms often when finding a hotel and the locations of Paris’ attractions. For a visual view, I’ve included a map of Paris below.

Paris is broken up into 20 districts called arrondissements. They start on the Right Bank on the Seine River and spiral out in a clockwise motion. Just as with any city, each district has its own character and attractions. For a more thorough breakdown and a map of the arrondissements click here.

While it may seem that every picture or movie may show the Eiffel Tower through a window in the background, that’s just not the case. Zoning laws in Paris have restricted newer buildings from being more than seven stories tall which could make them too short to be able to see the Eiffel Tower over the other nearby buildings. There are still PLENTY of places to stay with great views of the Eiffel Tower but this is definitely something to keep in mind when doing your research.

Paris has an average of over 25 million visitors each year, making it the #1 tourist destination in the world.

Since it is the #1 tourist destination in the world, the Paris Tourist Office has placed several Welcome Centers throughout the city. These centers offer free advice and pocket-sized guides to the city and it’s attractions. For a list of the locations click here.

Most attractions in Paris are closed on France’s national holidays so it’s a good idea to know the dates in case any of them occur during your visit. The national holidays for France  for the rest of 2014 are as follows:

  • August 15th: Assumption of Mary
  • November 1st: All Saints’ Day
  • November 11th: Armistice Day
  • December 24th: Christmas Eve (Observance)
  • December 25th: Christmas Day
  • December 26th: St. Stephen’s Day (Local Holiday)
  • December 31st: New Year’s Eve