Rue de l’Abreuvoir: Visiting this Montmartre Historic Gem

Welcome to Montmartre, a charming neighbourhood in the heart of Paris.

Curious about the history, highlights and how to visit Rue de l’Abreuvoir? Stick with me as I share one of the oldest and most historic streets in Paris. Just ask me, and every other tourist visiting Paris, this street is so quintessentially Parisian it’s a shame if you didn’t add Rue de L’Abreuvoir, the most beautiful street in Montmartre, to your Paris itinerary.

What makes me an expert? Only that I visit this street every trip to Paris (and that’s 8 times, and counting) and I’ve seen it in every season. Yes, some would say I’m Paris-obsessed, and if you are too, you will swoon over the Montmartre district.

Known for its bohemian atmosphere, old-world charm and artistic heritage, this lively district has countless hidden gems waiting to be discovered, just like Rue de l’Abreuvoir.

After all, a stroll here can easily be combined with visiting other nearby iconic sites like the Sacré-Coeur Basilica and Musée de Montmartre, as well as some hidden gems like the Love Wall and the foodie street of Rue des Martyrs.

I’m sharing it all. Let’s explore this enchanting corner of Montmartre Paris together!

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History of Rue de l’Abreuvoir

This delightful street is nestled in the heart of Montmartre, Paris. If these cobblestones could talk, they would tell you tales of centuries gone by.

Known as one of the oldest streets in Paris, this road was first mentioned on record as early as 1325 when it was known as ruelle qui va au but, or road which goes to the end. This was when Montmartre was a rural village outside bustling Paris.

It wasn’t until 1843 that the street name changed to Abreuvoir, which means ‘drinking trough,’ as this thoroughfare was once home to a watering hole for weary horses and travellers.

The allure of this prettiest street in Montmartre extends beyond its charming aesthetics. This historic street has witnessed the ebb and flow of artists, writers, and dreamers like me seeking inspiration within its enchanting ambiance.

Did you know that this street was a favourite haunt of renowned artists such as Vincent van Gogh and Pablo Picasso? Yes, these legendary figures once walked these very same streets, seeking inspiration and solace in the bohemian atmosphere of Montmartre.

All of Montmartre became a haven for artists and free thinkers seeking refuge from conventional Paris society.

Today, Rue de l’Abreuvoir Paris continues to enchant anyone who comes to this street. You can’t help but swoon over its cozy cafe and ivy-clad houses that line this street, making a great backdrop for any photo.

Whether you’re an art enthusiast, a history buff, or simply seeking a glimpse into the soul of Paris, this Montmartre famous street is a must-visit street in Paris.

Highlights of Rue de l’Abreuvoir

This picturesque street is bursting with delightful highlights that will leave you awestruck.

First up, is the iconic La Maison Rose, a pink-hued house with green shutters. Located at number 2, this quaint cafe is where Picasso himself frequented to find inspiration while sipping his espresso. Today, it is one of the most Instagrammable places in Paris.

If you can’t get a coveted table outside, the inside is just as charming. Step inside and you’ll be greeted by a cozy interior, adorned with vintage photographs and artwork that pay homage to the artistic legacy of Montmartre.

At the opposite end of the street is the Buste de Dalida. This striking bronze sculpture on the Place Dalida pays tribute to the legendary Egyptian-born singer and actress, Dalida. Installed near the entrance of the street, you’ll often find admirers leaving flowers or touching it for luck (or so the legend goes).

On every trip to Paris, I always find my way to Montmartre and to this street. I take a seat on the green bench just behind the Dalida sculpture and admire the view. The slightly curvy cobblestone road with the top of the Basilica of Sacré Coeur in the distance is one of my favourites, right behind seeing the Eiffel Tower.

Another hidden gem on this street can be found at number 4, a charming medieval house called Maison du Vieux Montmartre, or House of Old Montmartre which also goes by the name of House of Eagles. If you look closely you will notice an eagle and sundial carved into the gray stone, along with two stone eagle statues perched on the entrance gate.

This medieval house was the former home of Commander Henry Lachouque who was a great historian of the Napoleonic period and the Great Armada.

The last highlight of this street is located at number 15, the Cité Internationale des Arts. The complex consists of numerous studios and living spaces, where artists have the opportunity to live, work, and collaborate in an environment that fosters creativity and artistic growth.

A couple of times a year, the Arts Centre offers an art show open to the public to showcase some up-and-coming talent.

How to Visit Rue de l’Abreuvoir

grassy hill with roses and church in paris

If you are short on time and enjoying a weekend break in Paris, you’re in luck as Rue de l’Abreuvoir is easily accessible by metro. Take Line 12 and get off at the Lamarck-Caulaincourt station station, from there, it’s just a short walk to the street.

If you prefer to walk, it’s around 3km from the Louvre as you go through the 9th arrondissement it’s uphill, but there is a portion where you can take the Montmartre funicular to reach the top. If you have the time, I recommend walking as it allows you to see more of the city and its hidden gems.

If you’re an early bird like me, consider starting your day here with a visit. In the early morning, the streets are quieter, allowing you to appreciate the serenity and architectural beauty of Rue de l’Abreuvoir without the crowds.

If you are hoping to capture this street through your camera lens, you will have to get creative with the interplay of light and shadows.

The lighting is best during golden hour, just before sunset. But Montmartre is one of the best places to watch the sunset. Many come here to watch the sun begin its descent, making it one of the most romantic things to do in Paris. You, along with everyone else.

During the day, it is buzzing with energy and people. But that also is one of the charms of Montmartre.

10 Best Things to Do in Montmartre

After you’ve had a chance to stroll Rue de lAbreuvoir, there is a lot more to see and do that is nearby, including some of the best streets in Montmartre.

Montmartre, along with the neighbourhoods of Le Marais in the 3rd and 4th arrondissements and Saint Germain in the 6th arrondissement are mine and a tourist’s favourite and should be included on any 7-day Paris itinerary.

French tip: Montmartre pronunciation

Montmartre is pronounced as “mohn-mahrt.”
Mont: Pronounced like “mohn” with the ‘o’ sound similar to the ‘o’ in “more.”
martre: Pronounced like “mahrt,” with the ‘a’ sound similar to the ‘a’ in “car.”

Montmartre Things to Do

  1. Visit the Sacré-Cœur Basilica: Explore this magnificent white-domed basilica and enjoy panoramic views of Paris from its hilltop location.
  2. Wander through Montmartre Village: Take a stroll through the other charming streets of Montmartre, lined with quaint shops, cafés, and art galleries.
  3. Discover Place du Tertre: What to see in Montmartre is this lively, historic square, where artists gather to create and sell their artwork.
  4. Explore the Musée de Montmartre: Immerse yourself in the history and artistic heritage of Montmartre through the museum’s exhibits and gardens.
  5. Enjoy a cabaret show at Moulin Rouge: Treat yourself to an unforgettable evening of music, dance, and dazzling performances at the world-famous Moulin Rouge.
  6. Admire the Windmills: As one of the things to see in Montmartre, the picturesque Moulin Rouge and Moulin de la Galette, two historic windmills dating back to the 17th century, top my list.
  7. Capture the Love Wall: Visit the famous “Le Mur des Je t’aime” (Wall of Love) in Jehan Rictus Square, adorned with “I love you” in over 300 languages.
  8. Find a hidden gem called Clos Montmartre: Seek out an urban vineyard in the heart of Paris that produces around 1,500 bottles of wine each year.
  9. See some art at La Halle Saint-Pierre: Tucked away near the Sacré-Cœur, this unconventional art space for unknown artists features a bookshop and cafe. The unique exhibitions and the boho atmosphere make it worth seeking out.
  10. Indulge in French Cuisine: Treat your taste buds to delicious French delicacies at the nearby bistros and restaurants in Montmartre.

Where to go in Montmartre 🍽️

Boris Lumé Boulangerie: indulge in freshly baked bread and pastries from this renowned bakery 📍48 Rue Caulaincourt
Café des Deux Moulins: soak up the charming ambiance of the famous café featured in the movie “Amélie” 📍15 Rue Lepic
Le Consulat: experience traditional French cuisine like escargots, coq au vin, and crème brûlée at this historic restaurant and popular hotspot 📍18 Rue Norvins
Chez Pitou: delight in the flavours of a laid-back modern restaurant 📍28 Rue Tholoze

Top 3 Picks for Best Experiences in Montmartre

Wondering what to do in Montmartre? Well, if you’re a wine enthusiast like me, indulging in delightful wine tasting experiences in this charming neighbourhood would be top of my list. Here are some more recommended picks to enhance your Montmartre adventure.

#1 Top Pick
cookies on solo travel paris with chocolate

Montmartre Cheese, Wine & Pastry Guided Walking Tour

✅ 3 hours

✅ 705 reviews rated it 4.8/5⭐️

Reviewers say: local guide made it super interesting, shared history paired with the food

#2 Pick
2 people pointing to architecture on tour on rue de l'abreuvoir

Hidden Gems of Montmartre Walking Tour

✅ 2 hours

✅ 211 reviews rated it 4.8/5⭐️

✅ Reviewers say “We saw and learned things we wouldn’t have known if we went on our own.

#3 Pick
2 girls doing the can can on rue de l'abreuvoir

La Nouvelle Eve Cabaret Show with Champagne

✅ 1.5 hours

✅ 124 reviews rated it 4.5/5⭐️

✅ Reviewers say “It was a little bit cheesy, but it was pretty fun.”

As a Holidaymaker

Hopefully, I’ve answered your burning question of “is Rue de l’Abreuvoir worth visiting?” If you adore old-world charm then yes, it’s worth visiting!

Now, if you are looking for more Paris inspiration you’re in luck as I have covered this city extensively on my France Travel blog.

I recommend you read this next article, where to find the secret covered passages, another hidden gem in Paris. See you there!

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