step by step in Paris – 4th arrondissement

by Sharon Santoni

Continuing my tour of Paris, with a few addresses that will hopefully be useful to you on your next trip here.  In no particular order and by no means exhaustive, just a few places to check out.

Today we are in the 4th arrondissement, stretching from the river back to the Place de la Bastille … here are a few that I would recommend:


Notre Dame cathedral – admire the gargoyles, wonder at the technology behind an edifice like this being built in the 13th century


Ile Saint Louis, wander around or just walk through as you cross the river.  Buy an ice cream at Berthillon and take five minutes to walk down to the river edge and enjoy the peace and sunshine.


Villa D’Estrees hotel – great place to stay for that luxurious feel


Hotel Caron de Beaumarchais – old fashioned over the top charm


Shoah Memorial – a remarkable memorial museum dedicated to the Jewish population of Paris.  Well laid out and informative.  A good one to do with children studying second world war at school.



BHV is the name that Parisians give to this department store.  The Bazar de l’Hotel de Ville is its full name, and it is a reliable address for hardware in particular.

Illustration Paris 2011

The 17th century Place des Vosges is maybe the most emblematic spot in the 4th arrondissement.  The history of this carefully preserved square is fascinating, and you may think it worthwhile to find a guide to talk you through it.

260_4 La-place-des-vosges-paris

On the Place des Vosges, is the small Victor Hugo Museum.    His former apartment where he lived for 16 years and from where he wrote some of his most famous novels.


And finally where to eat … no problem in this part of Paris to find little bistrots or brasseries,  I enjoyed a lunch at the Bar du Marché



If you missed them, here are my step-by-steps around the other arrondissements so far:

1st arrondissement2nd arrondissement; 3rd arrondissement;   4th  arrondissement;            5th arrondissement6th arrondissement  7th arrondissement;   8th arrondissement;   9th arrondissement


Sandra Lambiotte April 26, 2014 - 12:37 pm

Just so beautiful! I am certainly there in spirit. Thank you for the lovely photos.


Wanda collier April 26, 2014 - 12:44 pm

Thank you for sharing! I will be in Paris in August. I look forward to seeing the Victor Hugo Museum. Each trip to Paris offers a different experience of joy. Wonderful City!

Annette April 26, 2014 - 2:27 pm

I’m loving these posts on the Paris arrondisements, Sharon. I can’t wait till you get to the 5th to see what little gems you have to share! The past 4 years we’ve owned an apartment on rue Monge (that we rent out between visits), so we always return to the same neighborhood and I am obsessed with finding new places in our area to see and to try out!

Colleen Taylor April 26, 2014 - 2:35 pm

Thank you once again for this introduction to tour this great city. I almost feel as I’m there already.

Holly April 26, 2014 - 2:49 pm

Sharing these with my girlfriend who will be there for our Thanksgiving. I dream of Paris though I will probably never see for myself. These posts are dreamy.

Dixie April 26, 2014 - 4:44 pm

What a gorgeous city! I wished I could catch the next flight.
Thanks for sharing!

burnside April 27, 2014 - 5:50 am

Just when you think you know how the July Column looks, Sharon posts a view from above. Those handsome pavements almost never show in photos or films.

Lucia April 28, 2014 - 2:46 am

Dear Sharon, thank you for your post. I wish I could be there walking the streets of the 4th arrondissement! Loved the photos!
Best wishes,
Lucy in California

Jeanne McKay Hartmann April 28, 2014 - 2:06 pm

Thanks for a lovely “walk” through the 4th, Sharon. How lovely to spend the day lingering in these pretty spots. I’m sending this to my friend who will be staying near the Bastille on a trip in June. XOXO

Roxane April 29, 2014 - 12:03 pm

Ah, I missed this post on Saturday! We were at Notre Dame on Sunday during Mass and I was overwhelmed by the beauty, majesty and wonder of the cathedral. It truly is an inspiration of the power of God and the intelligence of man. Luckily, the weather was somewhat cooperative that afternoon and we enjoyed walking around both islands. I insisted that we get an ice cream at Berthillon (le caramel au beurre salé avec café…yum!) The gendarmes had the riverbank blocked off at the Quai de l’Archevêché. and the Pont Saint-Louis. We found out why later as we watched some sort of demonstration (celebration?) cross the Pont Louis-Philippe. Having seen an protest earlier in the week, we were surprised by the high number of gendarmes needed for a group of 10-15 people! Sharon, I also wanted to thank you very much for your post from 2012 about Académie du spectacle équestre at Versailles. Thanks to your information, I purchased tickets online for my daughter & I. We attended the Les Matinales des Ecuyers seance de travail on Thursday before we visited the palace. We were able to walk through the stables and watch the riders lunge & work with their horses in the yard. Later, in the small, intimate arena we sat on the front bench and got to watch them practice. It was truly face to face with the riders and horses! I do believe we were the only Americans there, lol ! I think this was probably my daughter’s favorite time from the entire vacation. I’m looking forward to more posts about the arrondissements as I gather information for my next trip to Paris. Merci!

Lorrie April 29, 2014 - 11:36 pm

We wandered through this area and loved it. The Shoah memorial was touching. Along the river nearby is a building with a sign indicating that Heloise’ home had once stood in that area (of Heloise and Abelard fame). So many wonderful sites in Paris.


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