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Square de Montsouris, A Secret Village in the 14th Arrondissement

Last Updated on 5th April 2022 by Sophie Nadeau

On a fairly sharp bend in the road, behind an ivy-clad house lies a tantalising secret… a road which looks like it’s come straight out of the pages of some early 20th-century novel: this is Square de Montsouris.

parisian doors

Finding hidden locations is easily one of my favourite things about Paris. Because the thing is, you never know quite what you’ll stumble upon next! And each time you do, it feels like you’re the first person Paris has revealed its secrets to.

Square de Montsouris is no exception. It’s one of those places in Paris which has been frozen in time, hopefully for a while to come… Situated in the 14th arrondissement of the city, not far from Parc Montsouris (the same park from which it takes its name), the ‘square’ is actually a 200-meter long road.

Fully cobbled and packed with art deco and art nouveau architecture, the greenery of the place creates an atmosphere which feels quite like the road is an extension of the park itself.

square de montsouris paris france
square de montsouris paris france
 

A history of Square de Montsouris

Built during the 1920s and 1930s, it would appear that not much has changed in the years since. Built in the interwar period, during a time of peace for France, there are 60 numbers in total. Of course, there are plenty of beautiful locations throughout the city.

But Square de Montsouris has one of those rare qualities that it can be hard to find nowadays, even in Paris. It truly is a gem preserved, untouched by technological and architectural advances. Save for the occasional car, the tranquil place was the perfect spot for a short stroll, and a great way of avoiding the summer crowds.

Furthermore, the square sits in a part of the city which has a long and documented history. Part of the Petite Ceinture lies nearby, as does a long-forgotten entrance to the Parisian catacombs. The name ‘Montsouris’ literally means ‘mountain of mice’.

The name apparently originated from a windmill by the name of Moulin de Moque-Souris. This meant ‘windmill that mocks the mice’ and was meant to be a (half) joking warning against the mice who dared steal grain from the mill. Over time, the name was shortened to ‘Montsouris’.

Stained glass windows, lush vegetation, and quirky architecture come together to make this one of the prettiest squares of the city, and a must see for those who wish to visit a little off the beaten track…

square de montsouris paris france

Psst. If you’re planning to visit Paris this spring, then we’ve created a gorgeous 50+ page eBook full of beautiful photos and insider tips by a local. Included you’ll find hidden gems, the best places to enjoy cherry blossoms in the city, some of the top restaurant recommendations, and points of interest you can’t miss. Find more information here.

How to visit Square de Montsouris

Should you wish to visit Square de Montsouris for yourself, you should note that the street is free to visit and is open 24/7. With this being said, the street can get pretty popular during the weekends during its picturesque nature and so I particularly recommend heading there mid-week and earlier in the week (if possible) so as to avoid the crowds and take the best possible photos.

The closest metro station is Alésia metro station (line 4), though this is around a 15 minute walk away from Square de Montsouris. Alternatively, there are a number of nearby bus and tram stops available to reach the pretty Parisian street.

square de montsouris paris france
square de montsouris paris france
square de montsouris paris france

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Square de Montsouris; a quirky and secret Paris location in the 14th arrondissement of the French capital, Paris, France. How to visit an art deco and art nouveau road in Paris, Europe
square de montsouris paris france

Sophie Nadeau loves dogs, books, travel, pizza, and history. A fan of all things France related, she runs solosophie.com when she’s not chasing after the next sunset shot or consuming something sweet. She now splits her time between London and Paris! Subscribe to Sophie’s YouTube Channel.

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Melody

Sunday 19th of March 2017

The way you're able to capture the beauty in this little place in Paris makes me want to buy a ticket and head there as soon as possible!

Sophie Nadeau

Tuesday 21st of March 2017

Thanks (:. Haha, don't we all want to buy a ticket and head to Paris asap ;)

Tanja (the Red phone box travels)

Sunday 19th of March 2017

oh so pretty! and those red doors, very fairy tale like:)

Sophie Nadeau

Tuesday 21st of March 2017

Ahh, I was literally wandering around, snapping photos and planning my future house! :P

Kasie Chelanne

Sunday 19th of March 2017

WOW, I haven't had the opportunity to explore this corner of Paris but it truly looks like something out of a fairytale. Isn't it amazing to discover private corners of a city like this? It really does look like visiting must feel like taking a step back in time! I'm pinning this for my next trip!

Sophie Nadeau

Tuesday 21st of March 2017

Yes, I totally recommend checking out the entirety of the 14e (Parc de Montsouris has easily become one of my faovurite parks in the city!) :)

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