Paris is an exquisite city –it is a blend of fashion, romance, and trend. It has always been the centre of the world in countless ways –it is famous for its wine, cheese, and romance. It is not very hard to fall in love with Paris, and once you are there, it is very hard to resist the urge to shop and buy everything so as to preserve the memory of the city forever.
Ever since the famous department stores opened in France, shopping in Paris has been a grandiose affair! Whether it is shopping for books or clothes or food, Paris has the best to offer. The streets are lines with markets, stores, and boutiques. There are shops with haute couture and then are flea markets. All in all, shopping in Paris is a great experience.
It can be tricky deciding where to shop when you are in Paris, and so here is a thoughtfully compiled list of the top five places to shop in Paris.
- Avenue des Champs Elysées
A boulevard in the 8th arrondissement, Avenue des Champs Elysées, has a splendid view of the Arc de Triomphe. One of the most famous shopping streets of Paris, the Avenue is lined with innumerable shops that offer great assortment. Even though the Avenue is long and huge, you can find almost anything that you are looking for –be it jewellery, food, clothes, or souveneirs. Although you can drive on the street, it is recommended that you explore the avenue by foot. Not only will this help you see the shops better, it will also ensure that you do not miss out on any kind of cultural event taking place in the area. It is a great place for window shopping too, and you can admire world-class cars and international fashion. A day can comfortably be spent here, strolling and visiting the monuments nearby. When in Pairs, do not forget to shop here!
- Formus des Halles
Located in the 1st arrondissement, Les Halles was originally Paris’s central fresh-food market. Today it is a modern, subterranean mall, located in the heart of an underground railway hub. On an average, Les Halles attracts 150,000 visitors daily. This mall is built on several levels and houses almost all kinds of shops. It has plazas, restaurants, boutiques, and cafes. It is not very cheap, but is popular because it is convenient. Almost everything that you are looking for can be found in this mall. At present Les Halles is undergoing a major redevelopment. After the renovation is completed in 2018, Les Halles is expected to have its own gardens, media library, centre of cultural hip-hop, and a Mozart conservatory. When you are in Paris, you just cannot miss shopping here. A word of caution, though –the place does have some notorious reputation amongst the locals. It is not recommended to visit the mall afterhours. Nevertheless, it is dearly loved and is a shopping paradise!
- Saint Michel and Saint Germain Boulevards
The area around these perpendicular boulevards houses La Sorbonne, the historical edifice of the University of Paris. It is this university atmosphere that gives these boulevards a young, laidback kind of flavour. The St. Germain market is like a shopping centre, just larger. It has a traditional food market and is filled with lively pubs, restaurants, cafes, and exquisite book and art stores. The area is also full of stories –this place had always been the hub of intelligentsia. Whether it was Hemingway or Miller, it is here that thoughts and philosophies found expression. When you are in Paris, don’t forget to visit and shop here! You will find wonderful books, lovely cafes, and a different flavour of the Paris life.
- Rue Cler
Located in the 7th arrondissement between the Champ de Mars gardens and the Esplanade des Invalides, this area has a quaint charm. It has a pedestrian market lined with lush gardens, excellent boutiques, and wonderful food shops. Rue Cler in particular is great for food shopping. It is here that you will find La Sablaise Poissonerie, possibly the finest fish merchant in Paris. The neighbourhood also has excellent cheese and wine shops. You can also find wonderful chocolatiers here! When tired from shopping, you can relax and unwind in the lively and lovely Champ de Mars Park. All said and done, Rue Cler has to be on your top five places to shop in Paris!
- Le Passage du Havre
One of the many infamous covered passages of France, Le Passage du Havre is a shopping arcade located in the 9th Arrondissement. Housing lots and lots of shops, the arcade is the place to shop when in Paris! It has everything from branded showrooms to local jewellery, accessories, and shoes. The Passage du Havre is very famous for its electronic market –it is your go-to shopping place if you are looking for gadgets. It is definitely one of the largest stores for electronics. When you are tired, the arcade has a garden to offer and the Terrasses du Passage. It also has (nicely) working escalators to take you around the entire arcade. Le Passage du Havre was recently renovated in 2012, which has only added to the awesomeness of this place! When in Paris, this should be on your shopping bucket list for sure.