All of Paris is well trod. If a single footprint could be allotted one-quarter inch in height, then all the individual footprints trod at Tour Eiffel or Notre Dame for just one year, if stacked, would create a pinnacle nearly forty miles high. And yet, given the intricacy of the city, no two wanderings ever are likely to be the same. Paris delivers the grand sense of place that is dreamily anticipated, and yet also manages to yield a surprisingly personal experience. A seven-story height limit on buildings and plenty of wide-open spaces make the famous attractions visible from afar, sticking out like cartoon drawings.
If you don’t speak French, best to take someone along who does and who can haggle. Memorize the exchange rate and buy something that will fit in your suitcase. Mailing anything from France can be more expensive than your treasure.
How to get to the Paris Flea Market:
Porte de Clignancourt, line 4, coming from Paris.
Take the exit marked Boulevard Ornano, odd numbers, then the exit rue Belliaud /rue letord. Go under the ring road. Avenue Michelet is the continuation of the Porte de Clignancourt, but the easiest way to get to most of the markets is along the rue des Rosiers (first left off the avenue Michelet).
Garibaldi, line 13, from Saint-Ouen.
Reach the end of the rue des Rosiers by crossing the square Marmottan or along the rue Edgard Quinet .
N°85 (Gare du Luxembourg-Mairie de Saint-Ouen), Paul Bert stop (except Sundays and bank holidays, when the bus only goes as far as the Town Hall of the 18th arrondissement).
N°56 (Château de Vincennes-Porte de Clignancourt).
The PC: Porte de Clignancourt