The 3rd arrondissement of Paris is a tiny neighborhood—second only to the 2nd in terms of size—on the Right Bank of the Seine, ranging from Réamur-Sébastopol on the west to the boulevards du Temple and Beaumaurchais on the east, and from the boulevard Saint-Martin in the north to the rues Rambuteau and des Francs Bourgeois in the south. The neighborhood is home to the Jewish section of Le Marais—the Pletzl—where the lion’s share of the area’s medieval architecture is found.
For fine bistro dining, Les Enfants Rouges on rue de Beauce is a fantastic choice in the neighborhood. Chef Daï Shinozuka, an alum of Le Comptoir de Relais, owns the place and does a legendary baba au rhum for dessert, with the rest of the three-course pre fixe menu representing some solid French fare with Asiatic flair. Breizh Café on rue Vieille du Temple has a stunning menu of crêpes, from a salted butter caramel edition to exotic variations like seared scallops and other tastes of Tokyo. A selection of more than sixty ciders from Bretagne and around the world complements the crêpes superbly.
For cheaper dining, Le Mary Celeste on rue Commines serves up a seasonal menu from chef Mads Christensen that changes daily, with oysters on offer from September to April and a wine and cocktail list that hits every note. If you’re into coffee and people watching, the big windows and Belgium roasts of Loustic are a safe bet.
Les Enfants Rouges
9 rue de Beauce
Métro Filles du Calvaire, Arts et Métiers
+33 01 48878061
Open 12-2pm and 7-10pm Thursday to Monday.
109 rue Vieille du Temple
+33 01 42721377
Open 11:30am-11pm Wednesday to Saturday, 11:30am-10pm Sunday.
Le Mary Celeste
1 rue Commines
Métro Saint Sébastian-Frossart, Filles du Calvaire
Open 6pm-2am daily.
40 rue Chapon, Paris 3rd
Métro Arts et Métiers, Rambuteau
+33 09 80310706
Open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm, Saturday 9am-6pm, Sunday 10am-6pm.
If you’re looking for a wine bar, Le Barav is a super amiable bar started by three friends with good prices and a selection of cheese and meat plates to even out the wine. If it’s cocktails you’re after, then it’s the Little Red Door or the choose-your-own-alcohol adventure of L’Acte 3.
6 rue Charles-François Dupuis
+33 01 48045759
Open Monday to Friday 12-3pm and 6pm-12:30am, Saturday 6pm-12:30am
Little Red Door
60 rue Charlot
Métro Filles du Calvaire
+33 01 42711932
Open Sunday to Wednesday 6pm-am, Thursday to Saturday 6pm-3am.
94 rue Quinxampoix
Métro Étienne Marcel, Rambuteau
Open Tuesday to Saturday 6pm-2am.
Featuring more than five thousand works by the master himself, the Musée Picasso is an unmissable stop for art lovers. Housed in a hôtel particulier that’s worth close inspection in its own right, the museum is augmented by Picasso’s personal collection of works by contemporaries and artistic forebearers like Cézanne and Matisse.
The Musée des Arts et Métiers, on the other hand, is as scientific as museums get, and contains 80,000 objects alone, many of which, out of necessity, are in storage. On display, though, you’ll find the original Foucault pendulum, a mock-up of the State Of Liberty by Auguste Bartholdi, and the frankly mind-boggling Avion III steam-powered plane designed by Clément Ader. For history fans and francophiles alike, the Musée de Carnavalet is a living museum about the city of Paris, with scale models, historical treaures from throughout the city’s history, and thousands upon thousands of sculptures, engravings, furnishings, and every other artifact of human life.
If you’re into freakish dolls, the Musée de la Poupée on the impasse Berthaud will be right up your ruelle, and for a larger view of the Jewish history of Le Marais and beyond, try the Musée d’Art et d’Histoire du Judaïsme on rue du Temple.
5 rue de Thorigny
Métro Chemin Vert
+33 01 85560036
Open Tuesday to Friday 11:30am-6pm, Saturday and Sunday 9:30am-6pm.
Musée des Arts et Métiers
60 rue Réamur
Métro Arts et Métiers
+33 01 53018200
Open Tuesday to Sunday 10am-6pm, Thursdays until 9:30pm.
Musée de Carnavalet
16 rue des Francs Bourgeois
Métro Chemin Vert, Saint-Paul
+33 01 44595858
Open Tuesday to Sunday 10am-6pm.