Where to Go in Paris When You’re Feeling Homesick for the U.S.

A small boat in a body of water with a city in the background

Even when you’re in one of the most beautiful cities in the world, it’s not unusual to get a little nostalgic for your homeland. Here’s a list of places around Paris frequented by American expats of the past and the present.

American Library In Paris

The American Library In Paris, established in 1920 by the Library of Congress in conjunction with the American Library Association, just celebrated its 100th anniversary. Though originally a project designed to provide American soldiers in World War II with English-language reading material while they were abroad, the library has stuck around as a crucial resource for Anglophones in Paris. Membership is 135€ per year, or 100€ for students. But it could be a lot cheaper in the long run than buying books at Shakespeare & Co. for 25€ a pop. — 10 Rue du Général Camou, 75007

Treize Au Jardin

Kitty-corner to the Jardin de Luxembourg is a very un-French bakery by the name of Treize Au Jardin. Founded by American expat Laurel Sanderson, the bakery and teahouse is a slice of Southern comfort food on Marie Antoinette china. When you enter, curling script on the facing wall proudly proclaims, “Bienvenue, Y’all,” and if that doesn’t tell you enough about the general atmosphere, should we mention the all-organic menu and non-smoking (gasp!) terrasse? — 5 Rue de Médicis, 75006

The Real McCoy


In 2018, we lost Thanksgiving, the go-to specialty grocery store in the Marais for difficult-to-find American products. Luckily, there’s still The Real McCoy, which sells everything from instant mac’n’cheese to kitschy Walgreens-style holiday decor (tiny American flags on toothpicks, fake Easter bunny ears, etc.). Its partner, the McCoy Cafe, is just around the corner if you’d like your pecan pie right now, please. — 194 Rue de Grenelle, 75007

Harry’s New York Bar

Though it consistently ranks as one of the best bars in Paris, this “New York bar” was built by an American jockey named Tod Sloan. The wooden bar was actually shipped to Paris from Manhattan in 1911, which means that if these walls could talk, they’d tell you to fugget about it. It was the favorite bar of Lost Generation souls like Fitzgerald and Hemingway, and you’re still likely to find a good number of Americans there on any given day, raising a glass to those long gone. — 5 Rue Daunou, 75002

Happy Days Diner


Happy Days isn’t exactly an American diner as you would find one today. It’s a bit more like a sound stage milkshake joint straight out of Grease, but it’ll get the job done if you’re feeling 50s Americana nostalgia. Go for the milkshakes, and maybe stay to find out what a “Brexit Burger” is. Student lunch deals start at 10€. — 25 rue Francisque Gay, 75006

La Cave À Bulles

There are few things that have become more ingrained in the current American culinary zeitgeist than craft beer. But if you’re in France, it might be hard to find any beer at all that’s not the homegrown staple, Kronenbourg. Which is why La Cave À Bulles in the Marais decided to become the go-to craft beer place in Paris, offering hundreds of options from microbreweries all over the world. It was even one of the first places in France to put New York’s own Brooklyn Brewery on draft. — 45 Rue Quincampoix, 75004


Chattanooga is a California-inspired surf and skateboard shop just a couple of blocks away from the Eiffel Tower. Though the owner is from French Basque country, he was so inspired by West Coast surf culture in the ’70s that he decided to bring it to Paris… and it’s been there ever since. So if you’re in the need for sporty shirts, a frisbee, a boogie board, or a custom knockoff of a mass-produced American skateboard covered in Ninja Turtles, this is your spot. — 53 Avenue Bosquet, 75007

The American Church In Paris

If spiritual guidance is what you seek (or maybe just community) The American Church in Paris might be a good place to stop in on a Sunday. It was the first American church established abroad, and they hold regular services, and even a new member orientation. Or, if mass isn’t quite your thing, they have live jazz events in their cafe, and other performances and events. — 65 Quai d’Orsay, 75007

Shakespeare & Co.

This is one place we couldn’t just leave off the list. This English-language bookshop was opened by American expat Sylvia Beach a century ago, and it’s still a place where Americans congregate to browse, buy school books for study abroad programs, or meet up for a weekly writer’s workshop or book group. And sometimes even to sleep above a bookcase for the night. — 37 Rue de la Bûcherie, 75005

Featured image: Stock Photos from dvoevnore / Shutterstock

A close up of a sign


Get your weekly dose of Frenchly’s news.

Read more

Frenchly newsletter.

A close up of a sign

Get your weekly dose of Frenchly’s news.

Frenchly Newsletter.

A close up of a sign

Get your weekly dose of Frenchly stuff.