“métro, Expo, Resto”
Break out of the mould of “métro, boulot, dodo” (a French expression that, translated literally, means “Métro, work, sleep”) and get ready for “Métro, expo, resto”, as Babylangues introduces you to a new way of exploring the Paris Métro system. Join us in our quest to discover the various stations dotted across the city. How did they get their name? What are the surrounding neighbourhoods like? What can be found nearby? Some many questions and Babylangues has all the answers!
Served by line 12 of the Parisian metro, Abbesses is a bustling station on the western side of the butte (hill) of Montmartre in the 18th arrondissement. At 36 metres below ground, the station is the deepest of all the metro stations in Paris. The lifts have recently been renovated, but if you’re feeling energetic, take on the challenge of all 285 winding steps and enjoy the arty murals on the walls. There are plenty of cafés and restaurants on the square above the station to stop to refuel before you tackle even more stairs up to the Sacré Coeur!
Abbesses station opened in 1913, three months after the extension of the original Parisian metro line A, which ran from Pigalle to Jules Joffrin. The entrance to the station was designed by French architect, Hector Guimard, and is one of only two surviving original glass-covered Guimard entrances, called édicules (kiosks), left in Paris (the other is located at Porte Dauphine, while a third, replica édicule can be found at Châtelet).
Discover more metro stations HERE.
What Is There To Do Nearby?
- La Basilique du Sacré-Cœur de Montmartre
More commonly known as Sacré-Cœur, this church and minor basilica stands on top of the highest point of Paris, the Butte de Montmartre. The basilica, which boasts the “best view in Paris”, was completed in 1914 and also serves as a political and cultural monument. In the spring and summer, tourists and locals alike gather on the steps for picnics and to watch live music against the backdrop of Paris.
- La Place du Tertre
This square, located only a few streets away from the Sacré-Cœur, is home to many local artists who set up their easels there each day to paint or draw portraits for tourists. At the beginning of the 20th century, it was the mecca of modern art with many painters, including Pablo Picasso, living there. Today, the square is lined with traditional restaurants and brasseries that open their terraces in the spring.
- The Streets of Montmartre
Our favourite thing to do near the station is to wander (or flâner, as the Parisians say) the winding, cobbled streets, following in the footsteps of generations of artists, film stars and colourful Parisien characters. Indeed, the romantic streets and squares surrounding Abbesses feature in countless films such as ‘Midnight in Paris’, ‘Amélie’, ‘La Vie en Rose’, and ‘An American in Paris’.