THE SOUTH EAST OF THE LATIN QUARTER : the Latin Quarter OFF THE BEATEN TRACK…where Parisians love to go, where visitors rarely go…

“We did the hidden Latin Quarter tour. Cannot praise Ann Jeanne enough. Passionate with great knowledge. Very easy to talk to. Even though we had been to Paris many times we learnt so much. Would highly recommend these tours. Thank you for your time Ann Jeanne”  – Warren Greg Tania Dave


If you like wandering off the beaten track and explore quaint neighborhoods, you’ll probably enjoy this neighborhood that has a very special place in my heart and you will see what visitors in Paris often miss.  


Hadley and Ernest Hemingway in 1922 – It’s where they both used to live and go shopping –

The South East of the Latin Quarter that many travel websites and travel guides don’t mention. Though : 17th century facades, one of the most favourite market of the Left bank Parisians, high quality food and shops, remains of the Roman time, amazing doors…and among Hemingway’s most favorite Paris’neighborhoods. We’ll walk his favorite streets, and will see his home and the cafe he used to enjoy the most in this area

In the Snows of Kilimanjaro (E. Hemingway), Harry, the character wrote regarding this South East part of the Latin Quarter : “…There never was another part of Paris that he loved like that, the sprawling trees, the old white plastered houses painted brown below, the long treen of the autobus in that round square, the sudden drop down the hill of the rue Cardinal Lemoine to the River …”

This Latin Quarter :  often missed by visitors, though a great history and a very Parisian charm30072017-P7300180-4

It’s an area preserved, with a feel of the old times with its narrow paved streets, its markets, its old fountain and many more special places. And it has a special place in my heart, a place that I would enjoy to share with you : this neighborhood is the neighborhood/village where my grandmother was living and used to go shopping from the 30s to the 80s, where my mother has been raised and where my parents got married.30072017-P7300162-4

Location :

Located on the left bank of the river Seine, it’s the South-East part of the Latin Quarter, a part largely untouched by the Haussman huge renovation. Between the Pantheon and the Boulevard Port Royal. The South half part of the red zone on the map belowparis-5th-latin-quarter

One of the oldest part of Paris : 

This neighborhood has an amazing history and it’s also one of the oldest part of Paris. It was first built during the Roman time about 2000 years ago and the area still conserves Roman ruins. During the Middle Age, it was a very lively village. This part of Paris was annexed to Paris in 1724.  Nowadays it’s one of the most beloved part of ParisDSC_2036

30072017-P7300162-1Paths dating back to Roman time (paths from about 2000 years ago) walk the streets with old painted signs reminder of past times, and building facades dating back to the 17th centuryDSC_2111

Previously a Medieval Market street : During the Private tour I’ll designed for you, we’ll browse a market street (Mouffetard street) whose origin is probably 1350AD, possibly earlier, a wonderful market street with quality food places (vegetables, fruits, cheese, pastries, wine cellars, fresh breads and much more).30072017-P7300161-6


This was among Hemingway’s most favorite districts when he was living in Paris

We’ll stroll the pretty side streets with 17th century facades, old doors, an old fountain, 5 century old church, restaurants with outdoor tables, and sometimes musicians playing in the street. We’ll stop for coffee at a classic old and peaceful square… (Why not where Hemingway’ cafe was ?)…And we will see some of Hemingway‘s favorite haunts including the place where he has been living several years with Adley.







  • A break at the Lutetia Arenas , one of the most important remains of Lutetia (Paris was known then as Lutetia) from Gallo-Roman time. These arenas restored are dating back to the 1st century AD and were a Roman amphitheater. The exact place were gladiators were fighting with lions about 2000 years ago. And in the 20th century it was one of  my mother and uncle’s favorite ‘s playgrounds ! Nowadays, it’s still a favorite playground for neighborhood kids. A visit in the Lutetia Arena can be included in the private tour0_4200_84_2716_two_Pantheon_Woodson_009Arènes_de_Lutèce,_Paris_15_August_2013_007
  • A visit to a 13th Cistercian building : The College des Bernardins (click on the link for more detail about this building). A visit of The College des Bernardins can be included in our private tour22032017-IMG_6189
  • a visit to a 17th century royal garden : Le  Jardin des Plantes (click on the link for more detail about this building), which is the first French botanical garden, and a visit of the tropical greenhouses located in this garden . This garden was one of the place where my grand mother loved to take me when I was a child. A walk in the Jardin des Plantes and a visit of the Greenhouses can be included in your private tour. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  • A visit and a mint tea at the gorgeous white Grande Mosquée de paris with it’s impressive minaret
  • a visit to the rooftop of the Institut du Monde Arabe to enjoy a breathtaking view over the City Island (center of Paris where Notre Dame is located) can be included in your private tour

Please be aware that the Latin Quarter and Saint Germain des Prés are distinct neighborhoods ! Please, be aware that many English websites, even the most renown websites and reviewers, make a confusion between the Latin Quarter and Saint Germain des Prés; Saint Germain des Prés is a wonderful neighborhood (probably among my favorite neighborhoods, the neighborhood where I’d love to live if my current neighborhood didn’t exist… and if I had much more money too !) but Saint Germain des Prés is not the Latin Quarter. 2 different neighborhoods, 2 different atmospheres and feels. and 2 very different histories…



A few words about Ann Jeanne Private walks


Share my Paris, the Paris I love. I welcome you, I accompany you and we walk at your pace. Half a day or a whole day with a native including a break in a very Parisian cafe. It’s a cross cultural experience in Paris and a way to see Paris in a Parisian perspective.

Ann Jeanne in Paris’ private tours are designed for one or two persons for a friendly and personal experience of Paris. I was born and raised in Paris. And Paris is city where I live.

More details about Ann Jeanne Paris tours Don’t hesitate to contact me

And  : Some details about the booking and pricing :


More photos of the South-East part of the Latin Quarter



OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWhat is the “Jardin des Plantes” ?… The “King’s garden”

The Jardin des Plantes is an old Paris “Institution”, though not all Parisians visit this place often, this “Garden’ (which is much more than a garden ! ) is in all Parisians’ minds. Founded more than 400 years ago :  in 1636.

No Paris without its Eiffel Tower, no Paris without its Jardin des Plantes !

For Parisians, no especially the need to go to the place, the main thing is that the garden stays there in their city ! The visitors are mostly the students of the University nearby (The University of Jussieu), who hang out in the garden, have a break between two courses, the very young children of in the middle of the week with their nurse or grandparents when no school, which means on wednesdays afternoon, or after school (generally after 4.30 pm). During the weekend, families come to stroll  around or to visit the Gallery de l’Evolution most appreciated by children. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

My “history”  : this was one of the places where my grand mother used to take me when I was a young child. Mainly because it was located in her favorite neighborhood, the neighborhood she knew the most and where she had been living since the 30s.  Also the garden where she used to take my mother and her brother too when they were children ! So, this garden and the area are deeply linked to my grand mother…

Back to what’s the Jardin des Plantes !

geographic-situation-of-the-jardin-des-plantesIt’s the main botanical garden in France. It’s situated in the 5th arrondissement of Paris, on the left bank of the river Seine and covers 24 hectares (= about : 235 000 square meters). It’s an ideal spot to stroll around. It doesn’t belong to the city. It’s run by the French state. It’s a place which inspired the Douanier Rousseau’s jungle paintings. Centenary trees like this Leban cedar were planted by Bernard de Jussieu in 1734.

About 4500 plants are arranged by family on a one hectare (10 000 M2) plot and labelled. 3 hectares are devoted to horticultural displays of decorative plants. The Jardin des Plantes exchanges seeds to maintain biotic diversity.



A lot to see, visit and discover : 

There is a double alley of trees that run the length of the park, gardens, the Natural-history museumremarkable trees, a maze, 4 greenhouses, exhibits, beautiful historic buildings, a small zoo (menagerie), play areas, a restaurant and refreshment areas. Here are some more details about all these places : 

  • The alpin garden : created in 1938. It displays 2000 mountain plants from all over the world (Corsica, Alps, Himalaya…) The high altitude plants are grouped by soil type and orientation of the sun.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  • Iris, peonies and roses gardens, The Rose garden created in 1990 has hundreds of species of orses and rose trees.
  • Museum National d’histoire Naturelle : with the Grande Galerie de l’évolution and 4 other departments (paleontology, palaeo-botany devoted to plant fossils, Mineralogy and entomology with some of the oldest fossilized insects on earth).
  • The Botanical gardens established in 1626. 45000 species which are labelled and regrouped by families. It includes  a natural history museum and a botanical school which trains botanists.  
  • The Greenhouses : 2 elegant greenhouses, Art Deco style buildings . Built after the architect went to study the heated greenhouses in London’s Kew gardens. On his return he designed the largest two steam-heated greenhouses of metal and glass in the world at that time. Both of these buildings were finished in 1834 and 1836.  The  greenhouses  are devoted to plants from the French territory of New Caledonia, Madagascar, New Zealand, plants from Tropical climates including coffee bush, cactus from the southwestern USA and so on.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA



Differents galleries :

  • The Grande Galerie de l’Evolution : It’s a monumental 19th century glass-domed building standing at the end of the garden. Opened in 1889 just a few months after the inauguration of the Eiffel Tower.  It was first called Gallery of Zoology . Thousands of naturalised animals, one of the largest in the world that seem to come to life with lighting effects, sounds and musical sequences. It’s part of the National Museum of Natural History and is very popular among both children and adults. During the last 20 years, more than 13 million visitors came there to discover the collection of naturalised animals 
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A tour of the Jardin des Plantes’ neighborhood, (including the Garden) can be organized for you, customized, according to your wishes. The Jardin des Plantes neighborhood is one of the oldest part of Paris, with an authentic feel of a neighborhood (open air market, narrow cobblestones streets, Houses dating from the Middle Age…).

For more details : Contact me or annjeanne@afriendinparis.com 

  • A Paleontology museum
  • Mineralogy et Geology Galleries with exceptional examples of minerals, météorites and precious stones  and a collection of giant crystals…
  • A zoo was founded in 1795, by Bernardin de Saint_Pierre from animals of the royal menagerie at Versailles

A bit of History :

Louis XIII

Louis XIII, king of France, founder of the Jardin des Plantes

Founded in 1626, and originally known as the Jardin du Roi (the King’s garden). Become a medicinal herb garden in 1635 by Guy de La Brosse , Louis XIII’s physician. In 1640, it opened to the public. In 1693, Dc Guy-Crescent Fagon ran the gardens, surrounded himself with a team of brilliant botanists (Joseph Pitton de Tournefort, Antoine de Jussieu, Antoine Laurent de Jussieu and his son Adrien-Henri. …). In 1739, the Comte de Buffon, a famous naturalist became the curator and expanded the gardens adding a maze (the Labyrinth) which remains today. Buffon, a famous naturalist. In 1792 the Royal Menagerie (zoo) was moved to the gardens from Versailles.

The greenhouses : Built in 1834 – 1836, they are an early example of French glass and metal architecture.

Notes : Louis XIII (1601 – 1643) ,King of France, Henri IV and Marie de Medicis ‘s son



Useful informations: image-plan-du-jardin-des-plantes

Address : 2, rue Buffon (Censier Daubenton or Monge Metro stops) – Paris 5, or Place Valhubert (Gare d’Austerlitz metro stop), or 57 rue Cuvier – Paris 5

Metro: Gare d’Austerlitz, Jussieu or Place Monge- line 5 and 10

Buses : lines 57, 91, 89

Website : http://www.jardindesplantes.net/, email : webedito@mnhn.fr

Opening hours : 7.30am-8pm Apr-Oct, 8am-5.30pm Nov-Mar – Greenhouses are closed on tuesdays

Admission free, except the galleries and the Green houses

The tickets to visit the Grandes Serres : 7 euros

Experience Paris, with Ann Jeanne in Paris, native Parisian : 

  • You’d like visit Paris, but you don’t feel having a tour with a group ?
  • You ‘d like to feel welcome in Paris, whether you’re coming alone or not
  • You’d like to  get a real feel of an authentic Paris, the Paris of the Parisians and get full of tips from a native ?
  • You’d like to see Paris in another perspective and to know more about Paris and Parisians’s life and culture ?

Anne à Montsouris - Format original-2637FEEL WELCOME !

  • I’d be delighted to welcome you and share “my” Paris with you. And Paris will be “your” city too 🙂
  • The tours are private (with you only or you and the person you choose), at your pace and customized according to your wishes and interests
  • For more details : “Ann Jeanne in Paris” tours,  Booking and Pricing
  • All the tours can be customized