Paris is a city famous not only for the astonishing architectural and historical sites, but also for its markets. Did you know that you can find the world's biggest flea market in Paris? But not only! In the City of Light, there is a market for everybody. There are even special markets for textiles, books, flowers or birds. And don’t forget, the Parisian markets are the perfect places where you can meet and live like locals. In this article, I will take you to the oldest covered food market in Paris – Marché des enfants rouges.
The Marché des enfants rouges, established in 1628, is the oldest covered food market in Paris. In English, the name of this market literally means the “Market of the Red Children” and refers to the children clothed in red who lived in a nearby orphanage. This market is the place that kept all of its authenticity, and it is trendy among Parisian so-called BoBo's (Bourgeois Bohemians). Here, you can buy fresh fruits and vegetables, but also you can find a big number of stalls where you can actually eat. The only "trouble" is that you have to choose between delicious Japanese bento boxes, Lebanese sandwiches, Moroccan couscous, good quality burger or buckwheat pancakes. And I assure you this is not an easy thing to do! However, my favourite place is “Chez Alain Miam Miam” where you can have a delicious and rich pancake sandwich. But just to warn you, it is also a favourite lunch place for many other people, so be prepared to queue.
This market has been registered as a historical monument since 1982, but in the mid-1990s it had almost been destroyed and turned into a parking lot. The Parisian authorities thought that this market is too old, so they decided to tear down the historical structure. But the inhabitants of the Marais area had mobilized to prevent its disappearance. As a sign of protest, some people even chained themselves to the gates of the Marché des enfants rouges. And they won! After six years of restoration, the market reopened in 2000.
The Marché des enfants rouges is not easy to find, so pay close attention for the gate and archway that indicate the entrance. Also, you need to know that this is not a food court, so each stall operates as a separate restaurant, and you should eat at a table at the stall where you ordered. Of course, you can always take your meal away and have a picnic in a beautiful nearby park - Square du Temple. The Marché des enfants rouges is closed on Mondays. Métro: Filles du Calvaire or Temple.
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