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La Coulée Verte (Promenade Plantée) – A Scenic Nature Walk in Paris

About La Coulée Verte of Paris

Promenade Plantée | Coulée Verte in Paris | Paris Like a Local | Paris Travel Inspiration | Paris Bucket List | Paris walks | Parks in Paris | Paris Outdoors
Coulée Verte in Paris | Promenade Plantée | Paris Like a Local | Paris Travel Inspiration | Paris Bucket List | Paris walks | Parks in Paris | Paris Outdoors

Few Parisians know about La Coulée Verte (also known as La Promenade Plantée), located in the 12th Arrondissement of Paris. It is a pity because this free, 5 km stroll from Bastille Square to Bois de Vincennes is one of the most scenic walks in Paris, perfect for escaping the hassle of Paris without leaving the city.

La Coulée Verte follows part of the ancient railway (La Petite Ceinture) which stopped working in 1969. While the Bastille station was replaced by today’s Opera house, the viaduct was converted into glass-fronted workshops and boutiques for local artisans (the Viaduct des Arts), and the old rail tracks became La Coulée Verte.

La Coulée Verte Paris is a nature walk and car-free which crosses tunnels, trenches and parks. At times 10 meters above street level, La Coulée Verte was the world’s first elevated park walkway.

Promenade Plantée - starting point

We like to walk La Promenade Plantée in summer, to escape the high temperatures, or in the fall for its colors. The pictures on this post were taken in July and October so you can see La Coulée Verte of Paris through the seasons.

About this post

We have split this stroll into short sections, walking from east to west. For each section, you will find the walking distance, the closest metro station and the closest Vélib station in case you are moving around Paris by bike. Our stroll starts at Rue de Sahel but you can access La Promenade Plantée where you want thanks to stairs and lifts all along the way.

Ways to get the most out of La Coulée Verte

Section 1: Rue Sahel– Tunnel de Reuilly

Walking Distance: 800m

Metro Station: Bel Air, Line 6; Vélib Station#12022

Coulée Verte - Tunnel de Reuilly

We access La Coulée Verte through Rue de Sahel /Avenue du General Michel Bizot. After walking some meters we reach the section built in a trench, leaving the hassle of the city above us.

This is a beautiful section, my favorite part, very green and with lush vegetation. This part is also accessible to bikers, rollerbladers, and skateboarders. The path crosses two short tunnels beautifully illuminated. This part ends with a third long tunnel, Le Tunnel de Reuilly. At the end of this tunnel, the section heads to street level.

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Section 2: Allée Vivaldi – Jardin de Reuilly

Walking Distance: 350m

Metro Station: Dugommier, Line 6; Vélib Station#12036

Allée Vivaldi is a kind of pedestrian avenue with trees all along its way. We like to walk it when it’s fall in Paris because of the trees’ colors.

Along this avenue, we can still see the ancient Reuilly train station, which was served by la Petite Ceinture. You can see in the picture below how it looked like when La Petite Ceinture was still working. Today the train station is used for social events. At the end of this alley, we need to climb some stairs to reach the bridge which crosses Reuilly Garden.

Promenade Plantée - Allée Vivaldi

Coulée Verte - Gare de Reuilly

Allée Vivaldi – Reuilly Train Station

READ MORE –  Walking on the rails: la Petite Ceinture Paris (the full guide!)

Section 3: Jardin de Reuilly

Walking Distance: 210 m

Metro Station: Montgallet, Line 6; Vélib Station #12028

This is another cool part of la Coulée Verte because here we are walking 10 m above Jardin de Reuilly, through an elevated walkway.

Maybe this part of the path reminds you of New York’s high-line? Well, you are right! The Promenade Plantée, inaugurated in 1993,  was its source of inspiration.

In the summertime, Jardin de Reuilly is packed with people enjoying a picnic or sunbathing while in the fall this garden is usually enjoyed by some lonely walkers.

Coulée Verte - Jardin de Reuilly

Promenade Plantée - Jardin de Reuilly

Section 4: Jardin de Reuilly  – Rue de Lyon /Av. Daumesnil

Walking Distance: 1,4 Km

Metro Station: Montgallet, Line 6; Vélib Station #12027

This is the last part of this beautiful nature walk in Paris. At one point a modern building splits in two with the walkway in between, which is very cool! We are always walking 10m above the street level and it is interesting to see the surrounding architecture from another point of view.

Coulée Verte - Architecture

Promenade Plantée - Architecture

I like to describe this part as a “hanging garden”, with some water bodies, different kind of flowers and plants and some shady spots to take a break.

There are never many people around so even if it is a narrow stretch, it is nice to stop and seat on the shade for a break.

Walking the promenade

 

Viaduc des Arts

This beautiful stroll finishes at Viaduc des Arts. This is the ancient Viaduct de Bastille, built to support the railway line Paris – Bastille – Vincennes.

At the beginning of the ’80s, the City Council decided to keep and restore this place and dedicate it to arts & crafts. And that’s what you see today:  ateliers, workshops, cute cafes, and galleries have taken up residence in the vaulted arches below the garden.

Once you are done with this part, it’s time to go to Bastille Square and the surrounding streets for a more than deserved drink.

Coulée Verte - Viaduc des Arts

 

Did you like this scenic nature walk in Paris? Are there similar walks in your city?

 

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La Coulée Verte Paris, also known as La Promenade Plantée Paris, is a beautiful nature walk in Paris. Escape the crowds and enjoy some green without leaving the city!

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  • JONA | BACKPACKING WITH A BOOK
    02/08/2017 at 1:39 am

    I’m a huge fan of gardens and greeneries. This place perfectly fits the bill! I wouldn’t mind walking around here for hours. Or perhaps have a lovely date with a book.

    • WorldInParis
      02/08/2017 at 8:01 pm

      from what you say, la promenade plantée is perfect for you 🙂

  • Vicky and Buddy
    01/25/2017 at 2:57 pm

    I’ve been to Paris twice now and had no idea this existed! And how cool that New York’s high-line was modeled after Promenade Plantee. I’ll definitely add it to my list of things to do next time I’m in Paris; it looks so beautiful and peaceful!

    • WorldInParis
      03/01/2017 at 8:46 pm

      It is, it is!! I am sure you will enjoy it a lot. So next time . . .

  • Megan Jerrard
    01/25/2017 at 7:41 am

    I’ve been to Paris a couple of times, but I seem to have missed this! So much greenery, what a lovely walk! I’ll have to make a note to remember Promenade Plantee on the next trip, and then Viaduct des Arts after we’ve finished in the gardens 🙂 Thanks!

    • WorldInParis
      03/01/2017 at 8:46 pm

      I am sure you will enjoy it, especially if you walk it during summer time. So refreshing!

  • Indrani
    01/23/2017 at 8:59 am

    Promenade Plantee is so fascinating. I wish I was there for a couple of days more to explore Paris in detail. The 5 days I spent there flew off in no time. 😛 🙂

  • Aga
    01/23/2017 at 4:13 am

    I’ve been to Paris so many times and had no idea there are such beautiful green places! Will have to explore this side of Paris next time I’m there. Thanks for sharing!

  • Sumti
    01/22/2017 at 6:41 pm

    Paris is really beautiful. Lovely Photos. I never know there is so much greenry to see which is the best place to have a walk and roam around the city

  • Vicki Louise
    01/22/2017 at 4:59 am

    What an amazing green space in the middle of such a bustling city! It would be so lovely to spend a couple of hours surrounded by nature without actually having to travel outside the city. The few Parisians that know about it must love having this area on their doorstep.

    • WorldInParis
      02/26/2017 at 11:12 pm

      Yes, we do love it! It is a charming place especially in spring and summer time

  • Anne Slater-Brooks
    01/21/2017 at 6:34 pm

    This reminds me of the Trans-Pennine Trail which is near where I live. I love cycling or running along it and think I would feel the same about this place. I love that building with the sculptures on top.

    • WorldInParis
      02/26/2017 at 11:13 pm

      Never heard about Trans-Pennine trail. Where is it? It would be interesting to have a look . . . 🙂

  • Jerny
    11/26/2016 at 12:13 am

    A little stroll wouldn’t hurt! or maybe run around these greens. I am a fan of parks and gardens. I always tend to be a watcher of people, observing them. It’d be awesome to walk here with a loved one as well, a girlfriend perhaps, and talk about just anything enjoying the scenery. Sweet! Thanks for sharing!

    • WorldInParis
      11/26/2016 at 10:16 am

      You are welcome 🙂

  • Marge
    11/25/2016 at 8:50 pm

    To me it’s a good thing that few people know about the La Promenade Plantée or else it would be crowded and may make that bit about “escaping the city” impossible. It’s lovely though, and I can definitely imagine myself walking through there, to the view of all those greens, down to the tunnel.

    I have always wanted to go to France, it is my lifelong dream. When the universe takes me there (hopefully in the near future), I will take a walk to the promenade plantee for sure.

    • WorldInParis
      11/26/2016 at 10:11 am

      if the universe takes you there, just give me a call 😉

  • Rashmi and Chalukya
    11/25/2016 at 1:29 pm

    We have always known Paris as a bustling city. Its great to know about such green places away from the hustle bustle to spend some peaceful time amidst the nature. Thanks for the post!

    • WorldInParis
      11/26/2016 at 10:14 am

      you are welcome! i love to write about this less known places in Paris 🙂

  • neha
    11/25/2016 at 10:12 am

    This place is so green. I simply feel like staring forever on its greenery. The locals must understand the importance of such a place and nurture it with all their love..ask someone like me whose hometown is deprived of greenery

    • WorldInParis
      11/26/2016 at 10:18 am

      there is so much to see and do in paris that it is impossible to know everything

  • Danica
    11/25/2016 at 9:37 am

    I’ve always dreamt of going to Paris someday. Haven’t heard of this Promenade but definitely worth to visit! I love walking around and one day, I hope to see myself walking around this exquisitely beautiful place.

    • WorldInParis
      11/26/2016 at 10:15 am

      hope you will make it to Paris soon 🙂

  • SindhuMurthy
    11/24/2016 at 5:20 pm

    Woow is the word! I just love all the wonderful pics in this article. I very much enjoyed reading about this face of Paris which is otherwise considered synonymous to the famous Eiffel tower.Thanks a ton for the visual tour 🙂

    • WorldInParis
      11/26/2016 at 10:14 am

      thanks a lot for your nice comment 🙂

  • Gypsycouple
    11/19/2016 at 10:01 am

    We’re especially fond of green areas in a city and this seems to be perfect in so many ways. Hopefully we will have some time when we visit Paris to go on a walk in this promenade 🙂

    • WorldInParis
      11/22/2016 at 5:11 pm

      I hope so, it is a nice stroll! 🙂

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