4th Arrondissement of Paris: Where To Eat, Play & Stay in Ile de la Cité and the Marais

Introducing the 4th Arrondissement of Paris

The Paris 4th Arrondissement is one of our favorite districts of Paris. This Paris Arrondissement is full of history, nice cafes, art galleries and shops, the kind of place where you can never get bored!

If you are wondering what arrondissement is Notre Dame in, 4th Arrondissement is the answer. The 4th Arrondissement of Paris is also the Ile de Saint Louis and Ile de la Cité Arrondissement.

4th Arrondissement of Paris Map

Definitely one of the liveliest districts of the city, the fourth arrondissement comprises Notre-DameHôtel de Ville (Paris’ town hall), Ile de Saint Louis, the eastern tip of Ile de la Cité and the southern part of Le Marais.

Paris 4 is delimited by the Seine River in the south, and also by Paris 1, Paris 3, Paris 11, and Paris 12. The 4th Arrondissement is divided into 4 neighborhoods: Saint-Merri, Saint-Gervais, Notre-Dame, and Arsenal.

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Ile de la Cité & Ile Saint Louis

Seine River in Paris

In the 4th Arrondissement of Paris, we find the eastern tip of Ile de la Cité (the western tip is in Paris 1), one of the city’s oldest areas.

On Ile de la Cité you cannot miss Notre Dame Cathedral*. Built during the Middle Ages, Notre Dame is a Gothic architecture masterpiece and one of the most visited monuments in Paris.

If you want to know more about the Roman Paris Lutetia, take the steps down to the Archaeological Crypt, one of the most fascinating underground Paris sites. Despite its central location, just in front of Notre Dame, the Archaeological Crypt gets few visitors, which is a pity! After reading some information panels about Parisii and its first inhabitants, visitors can walk through Lutetia’s Roman remains and get a glimpse of Paris during Roman times.

Pont de Saint Louis, behind Notre Dame, will lead you to Ile Saint Louis. This is a lovely place for a stroll, with a particular atmosphere and beautiful views of the Seine and the city. On Ile de Saint Louis, you will find the best ice cream in Paris at Berthillon. There are many ‘Berthillons’ on Ile Saint Louis, but the original one is on 31 rue Saint Louis en l’Ile (you will recognize it by the long lines!).

*NOTRE DAME UPDATE: Following Notre-Dame Fire, Notre Dame Cathedral is temporarily unable to welcome visitors

Le Marais: Much More than Private Mansions

Enjoy the liveliest part of Le Marais, in Paris 4th Arrondissement. This old marsh area became in the 14th century the aristocratic neighborhood of Paris when King Charles V decided to move to Le Marais. The most important people in the court followed the king and built around the new Royal Palace some of the city’s most grand houses (hôtels particuliers).

The best way to explore the Marais is on a walking tour that covers its most beautiful sights. During your tour, don’t miss Place des Vosges, Hôtel de Sully, and Hôtel de Beauvais, home of a young Mozart during his first trip to Paris.

GOOD TO KNOW: Le Marais is neither a neighborhood nor a district of Paris. It is an area that corresponds to the 3rd and 4th arrondissements in Paris. Le Marais means ‘marsh’ in French, and a long time ago, it was just this, a marshland. Things changed in the 14th century when Charles V drained the marshlands and included this area inside the city’s new ramparts.

Gay District Paris

Le Marais is far from being a homogeneous area. On the streets around rue de la Verrerie, there is the gay district of Paris with rainbow flags everywhere, while the little courtyards, quiet cafes, and vintage shops of Village Saint Paul have a small-town vibe.

Finally, the Marais in Paris 4 is also the heart of the city’s main Jewish community. Cross rue Rivoli and you will find yourself in a small Pletzl (=little square in Yiddish) in the heart of Paris.

The first Jewish community settled in this area during the 18th century. From 1881, Ashkenazi Jews began to flock to France, fleeing the persecutions, and they found shelter with their coreligionists established in le Marais. More than half of the people living in the Pletzl died in the Nazi concentration camps whilst the survivors managed to keep the Pletzl’s spirit until our days: street merchants, orthodox Jews with their recognizable hats, boulangeries proposing the Hallot and other Jewish delicacies, and even a Schnorrer (rue des Rosiers).

4th Arrondissement Attractions

Top Sights in Paris 4 – Map made with Google My Maps

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1- Notre Dame de Paris – this magnificent Gothic cathedral built between the 11th and 12th centuries is Paris’s heart and soul.

2- Place des Vosges – this elegant square is one of the royal squares of Paris, and also the oldest.

3- Marché aux Fleurs on l’Île de la Cité – enjoy a scented stroll around this colorful flower market.

4- Hotel de Ville – this Renaissance building houses the city’s local administration, and it is the theatre of many city events.

5- Centre Pompidou – this eclectic architecture designed by the architects Piano & Rogers hosts a world-known contemporary art museum.

6- Tour Saint Jacques – this impressive tower built in flamboyant Gothic style welcomed the pilgrims on the way of Santiago de Compostela.

Hôtel de Ville-Paris

Unique Things to Do in the 4th Arrondissement of Paris

In our Paris Arrondissement Guides, we like to encourage people to beat the crowds and explore Paris beyond its main sights. Despite being one of Paris’s most touristy districts, there are many unique things to do in the 4th Arrondissement of Paris beyond the classic stroll along Ile de la Cité.

7- Paris from Notre-Dame’s Towers – climb up to the top of Notre Dame Towers for one of the best views of Paris, surrounded by gargoyles and other fantastic creatures.

Views from Notre Dame Towers

8- Cloître des Billettes – Eglise des Billettes hosts the only cloister from Middle Ages (14th century) that we can still see in Paris.

9- Village Saint Paul – a quiet and stuck in time labyrinth of cobblestone streets, cafes, and vintage shops with an old town feeling.

10- Brancusi’s Workshop – Located just in front of Centre Georges Pompidou, Brancusi’s workshop allows you to get a glimpse of how artists worked during the ’20s.

Atelier Brancusi - Paris

11- An apéritif on the banks of the Seine River this is a locals’ must! Enjoy a French apéritif with some wine, a Parisian baguette & fromage, while watching the Seine riverboats sail by.

12- Wander around rue des Rosiers get a taste of its many street food options in the heart of the Pletzl, the Jewish Quarter.

Best Local Restaurants in the 4th Arrondissement Paris

The Marais is an area with many good Parisian bistros. Foodies in Paris will love colorful rue des Rosiers, home to the best falafels in the city and other yummy cheap eats, while rue Rambuteau is well-known for its delicacies shops.

Best Restaurants in Paris
More Paris 4th Restaurants

Don’t you know where to find the best restaurants in the 4th District Paris? Here, some of the best restaurants in Paris 4 proposing good French cuisine.

» L’Ange 20  44 Rue des Tournelles, 75004 Paris. Typical Parisian bistro, not far from Place des Vosges, with good food and a relaxed atmosphere.

» Le Chanard  8 Rue Saint-Paul 75004 Paris. This is a small Parisian bistro, with a warm and friendly setting, with a countryside touch. The cuisine is both authentic and modern, with a menu that changes every day.

» Le Caveau de l’Isle – 36 Rue Saint-Louis en l’Ile 75004 Paris. Located in Ile Saint Louis’s heart, enjoy traditional but very refined cuisine in a very charming place from another era. 

Click here for more restaurants in Paris 4

4th Arrondissement Hotels

The 4th Arrondissement concentrates a generous offer of hotels and furnished apartments for all kinds of travelers.

Booking.com is the best site for booking hotels in Paris. They have good rates and a huge selection of hotels of all kinds plus it is possible to cancel for free if, in the end, you cannot make it to Paris.

Click here for the best hotels in Paris 4



Located in the Marais, in a former convent, Hotel de Josephine Bonaparte is inspired by Napoleon’s wife. Its unique decorated rooms are elegant and romantic, and its cozy saloons are the perfect place for a last glass of champagne.

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Located between Place des Vosges and Bastille, this is a good and comfortable hotel with contemporary rooms – fairly spacious for the Parisian standards – and a delicious breakfast buffet.

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This boutique hotel has the ideal location in the heart of the Marais, at only 2 min walk from Place des Vosges, bars, and restaurants but in a fairly quiet side street with little traffic. All the rooms come with a private bathroom and they have a beautiful interior design and a comfortable bed

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Hotels are still the most popular option in Paris but if you dream of living the Parisian lifestyle, then an apartment is the best way to get a feel for the local atmosphere. Enjoy Paris in the comfort of your Paris furnished apartment, regardless of the length of your stay.

Click here for the best Apartments in Paris 4

Paris Fourth Arrondissement Directory

Le Marais - Paris

Notre Dame de Paris : 6 Parvis Notre Dame, 75004 Paris temporarily closed

Place des Vosges: Place des Vosges, 75004 Paris

Marché aux Fleurs: 37 Place Louis Lépine, 75004 Paris

Hotel de Ville: Place de l’Hotel de Ville, 75004 Paris

Centre Pompidou: Place Georges Pompidou, 75004 Paris

Tour Saint Jacques: Square de la Tour Saint-Jacques, 75004 Paris

Notre-Dame’s Towers: 1 rue du Cloître Notre Dame, 75004 Paris temporarily closed

Cloître des BillettesÉglise des Billettes. 24 rue des Archives, 75004 Paris

Village Saint Paulrue Saint Paul, 75004 Paris

Brancusi’s Workshop: Place Georges Pompidou, 75004 Paris

Banks of the Seine River: Rives de Seine, 75004 Paris

Rue des Rosiers: rue des Rosiers, 75004 Paris

Want to Explore Beyond Paris 4?

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Quirky Parisian explorer with a preference for lesser-known sights, I am continuously looking for new ideas and tips to bring you the best of the City of Light! Read more about me.