Parisian Living

The 7 Best Paris Terraces For Summer

by Lily Heise

After months of shuttered closure, Parisians are thrilled about the recent opening of terraces, cafés, and museums. Café terraces are an essential to life in Paris, whether it’s for a solo coffee in the morning or apéro among friends in the evening. With new rules allowing eateries to set up tables in the spaces in front of their establishments, terrace mania has spread across the city. In order to help you choose the best one for you, we’ve brought together a selection of the best Paris terraces for summer.

Left: A picture of terrace diners in a lovely street in the city of Versailles beside a real estate agency 'Vieux Versailles Immobilier'. Right: A picture of someone's hand holding a dish of Agneau (Lamb) chops with an egg in a pretty bowl at the Parisian terrace by the Seine called Maison Maison.
Top left & above right: Maison Maison / Top right: @philarty_photo / Above right: rue de Satory, Versailles – @ruemargaux

Best New Terrace – Rosa Bonheur de la Porte Jaune

Eastern Paris is about to get hipper with the arrival of the latest Rosa Bonheur. The modern guinguette spirit of its other three locations will be replicated at this new location, found on an island in the Bois de Vincennes and boasting a vast outdoor terrace.

Left: The iconic café in Saint-Germain-des-Près "Les Deux Magots" with its empty terrace chairs. Right: A photo of an outdoor terrace on Place de la Sorbonne, overlooking the famous dome of La Sorbonne university.
Left: @varsovianna / Right: Place de la Sorbonne – @herve_in_paris

Best Historic Terrace – Les Deux Magots

The debate over which of the two legendary cafés of Saint-Germain is best could go on forever. Nevertheless, when it comes to the terrace, Les Deux Magot wins over Café de Flore. If you’re going to spend six euros on a coffee, at least it comes with a much larger terrace and a view of the Saint-Germain-des-Pres church.

Left: A picture of the iconic Parisian café called Café Saint Regis with its dark green and wooden outdoor terrace chairs and tables. Right: Another iconic Parisian café, Le Nemours, taken from Place de Colette.
Left: Café Saint Regis – @ruemargaux / Right: Le Nemours – @pariswithlanden

Best Quintessentially Parisian Terrace – Le Nemours

Overlooking the alluring Place Colette, this effortlessly chic café, with a long terrace with chairs facing outwards, is the archetypal Parisian café experience and is perfect for sitting back and watching Paris pass you by.

Left: One of the oldest covered passages in Paris, the "Passage des Panoramas". Right: A picture from the interiors of Maison Maison, a terrace by the Seine. In this photo, customers are seen in their terrace enjoying the view of the Seine and the Pont Neuf bridge.
Left: Passage des Panoramas – @ar1cha / Right: Maison Maison

Best Terrace on the Seine – Maison Maison

Paris has really been upping its game with its river-side terraces, and while the ones in the 13th and on Les Berges are great, it’s hard to beat the views and central location of this laidback venue with views of the Pont Neuf, Pont des Arts, and Eiffel Tower in the distance.

Left: Parisian friends are enjoying their quiet moment in a hidden terrace in Paris called Café A. Right: A plate of different seafood meals you can order from Maison Maison.
Left: Café A – @cafeapics / Right: Maison Maison – @thefrenchteur

Best Hidden Terrace – Café A

This cool terrace is located within the courtyard of a 17th-century convent near the Canal Saint-Martin. Although it’s a tranquil oasis within the city, the ambiance is fun and festive, especially on weekends.

Two pictures from Cafe de l'Odéon which is situated in the Place de l'Odéon, which is right in front of Théatre de l'Odéon. Crowds seated in at least 20 sets of tables and chairs are enjoying their time.
Café de l’Odéon – Left: @parisnowart / Right: @wendyandr

Best Under-the-Radar Terrace – Café de l’Odéon

Although it’s only a few paces from the Luxembourg Gardens, the large terrace of the Odéon Theatre remains for those in the know. Not only does it get a lot of sunshine, but you also have the pretty backdrop of the historic theater and very little traffic noise.

Left: A cute garden terrace called Café A. Right: A photo of Jardin 21 Paris, a eco-forward café with a vast vegetable garden.
Left: @cafeapics / Right: @jardin21paris

Greenest Terrace – Jardin21

Nestled within a vast vegetable garden in the Parc de la Villette is this eco-forward café. It serves local artisanal beverages and food made from ingredients from its very own garden, the ideal break after a stroll along the Canal de l’Ourcq.

Addresses:

Rosa Bonheur de la Porte Jaune – Avenue de Nogent, 75012 Paris

Les Deux Magots – 6 Place Saint-Germain des Prés, 75006 Paris

Le Nemours – 2 place Colette, 75001 Paris

Maison Maison – access via stairs below 16 Quai du Louvre, 75001 Paris

Café A – 148 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Martin, 75010 Paris

Café de l’Odéon – Place de l’Odéon, 75006 Paris

Jardin21 – 12/A Rue Ella Fitzgerald, 75019 Paris

Left: A cute garden terrace called Café A. Right: A photo of Jardin 21 Paris, a eco-forward café with a vast vegetable garden.
Left: @cafeapics / Right: @monpetitfour

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Written By

Lily Heise

Lily Heise has been living in Paris for more than 10 years. When she's not getting into romantic mischief, she writes on dating, travel, and culture. Her writing has been featured in Frommer’s Guides, the Huffington Post, Conde Nast Traveler, City Secrets, DK Eyewitness Guides, and other local and international publications. She is the author of Je T'Aime, Me Neither, and Je T'Aime... Maybe? lively novelized memoirs on her romantic misadventures, and continues to share dating tips, stories and travel features on her blog www.jetaimemeneither.com. View Lily Heise's Website

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