“Quartier Latin,” as the 5th Parisian District is called, is situated on the south side of the river in the city center. The Quartier Latin is well known among students for its fresh atmosphere. Mainly around Saint-Michel fountain you’ll meet a lot of young street artists creating hand-crafted products from wires or spray paint, and you’ll find many stands of cheap street food for students. The district is really animated and alongside the Republic Square, it is one of the best places to go for an evening drink. However, pay attention – as “Quartier Latin” is becoming more and more touristic, so you have to carefully choose from an enormous number of restaurants and bars. In order to not to fall into a tourist traps, this article will provide two tips for very nice places where you can sit and enjoy your drink with real locals, far from crowded tourist destinations.
Le Reflet - a bar for the cinema lovers
The first bar you should definitely not miss is located on the very small rue Champollion, which is situated just next to the metro station Cluny-La Sorbonne. Despite its tiny size, rue Champollion is surely one of the most interesting streets of the district – it hides an enormous number of art cinemas whose look seems to be stuck in the 60’s, the golden age of “cinephilia.” There is one cinema next to another and they have all an interesting program to explore. The best films are shown together with the most interesting new masterpieces, and if you’re a true cinema lover it is compulsory to see at least one classic movie here. In case you get thirsty, there is also a tiny bar called “Le Reflet,” just next to one of the cinemas.
Reflet is an ideal place to meet after a movie screenings. The interior of the bar stimulates post-viewing discussions even more as the walls are decorated with cinema posters from the most famous films. You’ll always find some students talking about films with a pint of beer in hand, as well as cinema employees sitting on bar stools with a small glass of wine. One could say that you’re in cinematic heaven. The overall relaxed and familiar mood is supported by the choice of background music – the oldie hits rule here. I ensure you that once you enter Reflet you won’t leave.
Something to eat as well....
Le Reflet has a large variety of beers, delicious wines, and cool cocktails. Also their hot drinks are worth trying - I strongly recommend the hot chocolate with whipped cream or the true cappuccino with lots of milk foam on top. Reflet is also well-equipped for hungry visitors and offers really delicious homemade snacks. You can choose from assorted cheese and sausage plates, homemade French fries, a variety of hearty salads as well as a large scale of toasted breads called “tartines” in French. Order a carafe of house wine with one of these tartines and your evening can’t be better!
Connolly's Corner - cosy Irish atmosphere
Another great place to have a good drink is located on the bottom of the famous rue Mouffetard. One of the best places to taste delicious street food, and experience nightlife is on le Mouffetard. At night, the street is full of young students from all over the word that come here to meet and spend time together. The le Mouffetard area has plenty of cheap bars that offer young students attractive happy hours promotion. One bar in particular deserves special attention – a small Irish pub called Connolly’s Corner, which can be found at 12 rue Mirbel, just few steps from the Censier-Daubenton metro stop. The exterior of Connolly’s Corner is decorated by funny Irish leprechauns and imps making the outside one you can’t miss. Because of its homey atmosphere, it is often very crowded. Despite this, you should go to Connolly’s Corner and try to grab a place – if not at one of the small tables made from repurposed wooden barrels, then at least grab a stool at the bar. Have yourself a nice pint of beer (the selection is large and of excellent quality) and have fun by examining the variety of ties that are hanging on the walls, which were left there by happy customers. On Sunday nights, there is one more reason to visit Connolly’s Corner: each week different groups play live Irish music for free. The musicians, always smiling, playing and drinking, create a unique atmosphere filled with cheerfulness. There are not so many places like this in Paris…
Now, it is just up to you which bar do you prefer to visit – the Irish lively atmosphere of Connolly’s or French cinematic enchantment of le Reflet? In any case, you won’t be disappointed.
The best bars in the Latin Quarter
In this article you’ll find two tips for the best places to go for a good drink and food in the Quartier Latin. If you follow this advice, you will avoid the tourist traps and your Parisian evening will be perfect.
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