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Rue Mouffetard Market

Market street vs Street market

Rue Mouffetard is both a market street, and a street market. What does that mean?

Parisians have always been keen on fresh foods, and being in the city access has been limited since medieval times.  Every day farmers and producers from the agricultural lands around the city would come into particular streets to sell their wares.  Hence a market within a street.

But with the growing civilization of the city there have been rules set about market cleanliness and behavior for hundreds of years, and gradually market stalls were cleaned up and producers moved into shop fronts.  These streets full of shops selling fresh produce are Market streets and while Paris has many it is without doubt that rue Mouffetard is the premier market street of the city.

In his novel A Movable Feast the American author Ernest Hemmingway called the street a "that wonderful narrow crowded market street which led into the Place Contrescarpe".  To him it was a market street, but then he lived in the northern part just steps from Place Contrescarpe, while the street stalls of the produce market are at the far southern end at Square Saint-Médard.

While you are there don't miss a look inside the church itself, appreciate the fountain in the center of the traffic circle and of course pop in to the Mouff branch of The House of Androuet, the premier fromageries of Paris.  Don't just look at the 200 types of cheese, but step back and observe the beautiful painted exterior of the building itself at 134 rue Mouffetard.

 

Opening Hours

Market stalls often close when at lunch and do not open again in the afternoon so mornings are the best time to visit.  Before 9am shops will have not opened, indeed some won't be fully operational until 10am. 

Opening Days

Completely closed on Sunday afternoon and on the whole of Monday the market does operate all other days, however it is most interesting by far to visit when it is open on Saturday and Sunday morning when the local population visit to shop. On the weekends the whole street throbs with activity as people shop, drink, converse and enjoy themselves.

Map / Location

At the southern end of the street, right outside the church, is where you will find the market stalls selling produce.  But of course don't miss walking up the street to see the many other shops of the market street many of which have open air frontages with stalls in the pedestrian street extending the market experience for hundreds of meters.

Metro stop

Closest Metro stop to the market stalls is Censier - Daubenton. The closest bus line is 47.