A few weeks ago, some friends and I ventured into the 10th arrondissement to enjoy a stroll along the Canal Saint-Martin. Before coming, I had heard a lot about the canal and seen many beautiful pictures – to me, and many will probably agree, it is like having a tiny part of Amsterdam here in the middle of Paris! You may well recognise the Canal Saint-Martin from its staring role in the film Amélie, which shows the audience one of her favourite past times – skipping stones across the water. I totally forgot to do that myself when I went, so I’ll will have to go back to attempt to recapture such a moment.
The construction of the canal was begun during the beginning of the 19th century under the direction of Napoleon I, with its main function to supply fresh water into the city of Paris. Throughout the centuries, the canal was also used as a means of transporting food and various building materials into the heart of the city. However, today the canal is simply a magical reminder of a previous time and a popular designation for Parisians.
The Canal Saint-Martin is the perfect place for a walk, despite the season. There’s even more good news. If your legs get a little weary or you’re feeling parched, do not fear, as there are so many quaint cafes to rest in. With so many new places to wine and dine along the canal, you’re definitely spoilt for choice. As you walk along the canal, you’ll also notice that many of the walls of the buildings aligning the walkway are covered in vibrant graffiti. It’s almost like walking around an outdoor gallery.
I had such a lovely time Canal Saint-Martin, and cannot recommend it enough to anyone visiting/living in Paris who are yet to experience this wonderful area. Unfortunately I did not take any photographs using my DSLR camera, so it looks like I’ll have to come back and pay the canal a visit soon!