In the past few years, urban farming and community gardens have exploded in popularity in Paris, with miniature plots of land popping up on rooftops, in quiet corners and even on bustling avenues.
The garden at Place Frehel: Perched in between the Menilmontant and Belleville neighborhoods, this community garden is a space to admire not only the budding plants and flowers, but also the area’s abundant street art. Large murals fill the walls surrounding the garden and the next-door Culture Rapide (103 Rue Julian Lacroix, just off of Rue de Belleville) is a great place to stop in for a coffee or beer, or hang out on the outdoor terrace.
Every Thursday at 8pm, the bar offers a literary open mic night in English, featuring spoken word poetry, musical theater and comedy.
Poetry not your thing? You can also head up the road to the Parc de Belleville, a hilly, flower-filled expanse of land. Or, if you’re up for some Chinese food, go down Rue de Belleville a few paces to enter into one of Paris’s two Chinatown neighborhoods with tasty restaurants galore.