So, you’ve spent an entire day inside the Louvre, a half-day at Musée d’Orsay, and you’ve walked around the Jardin de Tuileries. You’ve waited in line to take a peak inside the beauty that is Notre-Dame, and you’ve most definitely picnicked in front of the eiffel tower. You’ve seen the catacombs and Sacré-Coeur, and you may have enjoyed a show at the Moulin Rouge. You’ve eaten baguette, croissant, and pastries to your heart’s content (for now!). So what next? Here’s one insider tip for you my fellow traveler.
The Promenade Plantée, also known as Coulée Verte René-Dumont, is a 4.7 km (2.9 mile), elevated garden/walkway in the 12th district of Paris. Resting 10 meters above the busy streets, atop the remnants of the Vincennes railway tracks, it would be easy to miss this hidden gem if you didn’t know to look for it!
Gratefully, my husband lives within walking distance, so I came here for a run and some outdoor exercise on my recent trip. For a step-by-step video of that workout routine, click here!
I am beyond blessed to have been introduced to this beautiful greenbelt on my very first trip to France. I make it a point to go for a run on the promenade every time I visit. In a city filled with so many people, it’s a luxury to feel the solitude you experience while walking through this park. This was my first time seeing the city during springtime, and this garden has never been more beautiful! My heart was so happy being up there with all the flowers and greenery, like cherry trees, lavender, rose bushes, and those cute little white flowers I don’t know the name of.
The promenade is just east of the Opéra Bastille, and runs parallel to the avenue Daumesnil. It sits atop the Viaduc des Arts, which is a row of very nice art studios and boutique shops. I’ll often finish my run on street-level just to peak inside the windows and catch a glimpse of artists, or some of their unique work!
Jardin (garden) de Reuilly-Paul-Pernin intersects the promenade. My first summer in France, I caught a ton of local Parisians sunbathing there.
This is where you enter, near the Opéra Bastille. There’s also elevator access!
(Fun for me because I’m a nerd. Possibly boring for you if history isn’t your thing, so feel free to keep scrolling!)
- It was the first rail-to-trail park constructed in an urban area. The next being New York City’s High Line in 2009!
- Designed by landscape architect Jacques Vergely and architect Phillipe Mathieux, the Promenade Plantée was inaugurated in 1993 as part of then-president Mitterrand’s ongoing Grands Projets. The projets included the Louvre pyramid, and the Opéra Bastille.
- The eastern portion is reserved for pedestrians. The western portion is open to cyclists and those on foot! If you’re a cyclist or rollerblader, hit that sh*t up!
- The Vincennes railway line began in 1859 and closed in 1969.
- More elevated gardens will be popping up all around the world: London, Washington DC, Toronto, and Rotterdam.
Future travel destinations? I think so!
Traveling can be exhausting. You’re trying to do so much in such a short period of time. You’re balancing personalities, and preferences. You’re outside your comfort zone. I love all that. So much. But that doesn’t mean I don’t need a break from it for like an hour. Exercise does that for me. It’s my me time. I cherish it.
So if you need a respite from the insanity, come up here alone, take a walk or a jog, or just sit with your favorite treat and zone out.
And if alone time isn’t your thing, bring your travel companions and experience this spot together! I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
Would you want to go here? Or did you already know about it? Feel free to comment below!
Have an amazing day!