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Canal Saint-Martin

The quartiers around the Canal Saint-Martin (a 4.55 km canal) are in the 10th and 11th arrondissements of Paris, between the République, Jacques Bonsergent, and Goncourt Metro stations.

A small trendy village right in the centre of Paris!  Bobo Paris, the workers' Paris and always romantic.

You just need to take an evening walk past the Hôtel du Nord on 102 quai de Jemmapes, cross a footbridge beneath the ancient trees to hear the voice of Arletty saying "Atmosphère, atmosphère! Est-ce que j'ai une gueule d'atmosphère?"

This was once a very working class area of Paris but today the Canal Saint-Martin has become very 'bobo' (bourgeois bohème).  However, it is still just as romantic with its bridges and its locks.  It is still busy with barge and pleasure boat traffic. 

Here you might meet actors, producers, IT people, artists, engineers and even the odd journalist but you will also meet families who like to take a walk in this little bit of countryside in the city.  On summer evenings people bring their picnics or set up impromptu musical performances. 

Bars and Restaurants - Chez Prune at 36 rue Beaurepaire, Le Verre Volé at 67 rue de Lancry … - attract the locals and passers-by with their welcoming ambience. 

There are cycle paths, ideal for long bike rides, and since 1994 cars are forbidden to drive in some street on Sundays.  This is something that would not have displeased Louis XIV who designed the canal and Napoléon I who began its construction in 1802. It was built to bring water to Parisians, financed by a tax on … wine.

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