The Parisian love of style and fierce attachment to small local traders have kept alive a wonderful variety of speciality shops. The nineteenth-century arcades, or passages, in the 2e and 9e arrondissements, are particularly rich in intriguing boutiques, while the square kilometre around place St-Germain-des-Prés is hard to beat for anything from books to shoes, and from antiques to artworks. Other atmospheric and rewarding places for browsing include the aristocratic Marais, the trendy Bastille quartier, the quirky Abbesses quarter of Montmartre, and the broadly bohemian Oberkampf and Canal Saint-Martin areas of northeastern Paris. For haute couture the traditional bastions are avenue Montaigne, rue François 1er and the upper end of rue du Faubourg-St-Honoré in the 8e. The traditional shopping heart of the city, Les Halles, is very commercial, and mostly downmarket. The most atmospheric places for book shopping are the Seine quais, with their rows of mostly secondhand bookstalls perched against the river parapet. The quartier Latin is the home of most of the city’s best independent bookshops.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

Paris features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

An expert’s guide: the best area to stay in Paris

An expert’s guide: the best area to stay in Paris

All the clichés about Paris are true – stylish, romantic, glamorous and utterly compelling – yet it retains surprises that continue to delight even the mos…

26 Sep 2016 • Rough Guides Editors insert_drive_file Article
10 of the best European city breaks

10 of the best European city breaks

In this article sponsored by Scenic Australia, Emma Gibbs picks 10 of the best city breaks across Europe. Europe is so crammed full of fascinating, vibrant c…

01 Dec 2015 • Emma Gibbs insert_drive_file Article
The romance of Paris captured in 18 photographs

The romance of Paris captured in 18 photographs

Originally from Mumbai, India, I lived in Paris for five years. Like everyone who comes here for the first time, Paris to me was the city of romance – the s…

23 Oct 2015 • Kaamna Patel insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month