Things to Do in Paris 13th Arrondissement
Ideas for When you Visit Paris – The 13th Arrondissement contains the Gare d’Austerlitz (Austerlitz Station), one of the six large Paris train stations, the France National Library and several unique residential communities.
Gare d’Austerlitz gets it name after the famous Napoleon battle which was fought in the region that is now known as the Czech Republic
Gare d’Austerlitz Bridge
Visit Paris Train Stations – Take Overnight Trains From Paris
Initially, Gare d’Austerlitz train station was the origin for the Paris-Bordeaux and Paris-Toulouse main lines, but since the introduction of the TGV Atlantique served by the Gare Montparnasse, Gare d’Austerlitz has lost most of its long-distance south-western services.
It is used by some 25 million passengers annually, about half the number passing through Montparnasse.
The Elipsos Train Hotels (Trenhotel) operate jointly between France, Italy and Spain.
These overnight trains generally leave Gare d’Austerlitz around 7pm local time and travel overnight arriving the next morning at their destinations. Make sure to check their schedules as times may vary.
Some of the Paris train stations are going through changes and Gare d’Austerlitz is currently being refurbished, with four new tracks under construction and the existing tracks being covered. When this is completed, it will be another superb example of Paris travel and attractions.
The interior will be rebuilt in order to receive the TGV Sud-Est and TGV Atlantique, partially transferred from the Gare de Lyon and Gare Montparnasse, both of which have reached maximum capacity.
The reconstruction is scheduled to be completed by 2020, and will allow a doubling of the station’s activity.
When you Visit Paris Enjoy the Residential Areas with Public Spaces
On your Paris tours in the 13th visit a public space called Place d’Italie.
This square is less than 200 meters but the following streets meet there:
- Avenue des Gobelins
- Avenue de la Sur-Rosalie
- Avenue d’Italie
- Avenue de Choisy
- Boulevard Vincent-Auriol
- Boulevard de l’Hôpital
- Boulevard Auguste-Blanqui
- Rue Bobillot
- Rue Godefroy
On the Left Bank of the River Seine, the 13th arrondissement is primarily a residential and business district in the south-eastern part of the French capital.
The 13th arrondissement is also home to Paris’s main Chinatown, perhaps the biggest in Europe.
Tolbiac is a good entrance point to the Paris Chinatown
Although not generally recognized as an area of Paris attractions, the 13th does hold several attractions of interest including the François Mitterrand Bibliothèque Nationale de France (National Library), now part of a major new developing business district of the Paris Rive Gauche (PRG).
When you Visit Paris – Check Out Modern Living and Shopping on Your Paris Travel
The first of these urban projects was Les Olympiades, with its raised esplanade and the latest of the Paris Meteor (high-speed metro) stops, the driverless hi-speed Paris Metro Line 14 running every 4 minutes.
Les Olympiades is a district of residential towers built along a huge pedestrian only esplanade. A shopping mall, known as the Pagode, stands at the center of the esplanade.
The tallest towers are named after cities that have hosted the Olympic Games: Anvers (Antwerp), Athènes (Athens), Cortina, Helsinki, Londres (London), Mexico, Sapporo, and Tokyo.
Les Olympiades were built with the aspiration that a population of young professionals would see this as an area of unique Paris attractions with a very modern complex offering multiple services, education, sports, etc.
Visit Paris Take a Romantic Stroll Along the Seine River
It’s an easy walk from the 13th arrondissement to the center of Paris (Île de la Cité) which takes around 40 minutes, either through back streets or along the Seine promenade. It can be a very pleasant walk and you can walk across the Latin Quarter through the rue Mouffetard in the 5th arrondissement.
Gobelins Tapestry Factory
Paris Tours – Discover an Ancient Tapestry Factory
The Manufacture des Gobelins is a tapestry factory located in Paris, is a different type of Paris attraction, and best known as a royal factory supplying the court of Louis XIV and later monarchs. Now run by the French Ministry of Culture, it is open for guided Paris tours several afternoons per week by appointment.
Behind the Gobelins Manufactory is the adjoining Bièvre river.
Previously, in 1602, Henry IV of France rented factory space for his Flemish tapestry makers on the current location of the Gobelins Manufactory.
The factory, near the Les Gobelins Paris metro station, has been used for a general upholstery factory, in which designs both in tapestry and in all kinds of furniture were supervised by the royal painter, Charles Le Brun, who served as director and chief designer from 1663-1690.
The manufacture of carpets was added to that of tapestry and in 1871 the building was partly burned down by the Communards.
The Bourbons revived the factory during the Restauration in 1826. The factory, now operated by the state, is one of the fascinating things to do for your Paris travel as it contains Le Brun’s residence and workshops that served as foundries for most of the bronze statues in the park of Versailles, as well as looms on which tapestries are woven following seventeenth century techniques.
Visit Paris – Top Picks of the 13th Arrondissement
- Bibliothèque nationale de France National Library, Tolbiac
- Gare d’Austerlitz
- Gobelins manufactory
- Park Choisy
- Place d’Italie
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