When people think of Paris, they always think of the Eiffel Towe or the Louvre Museum. The truth is, however, there are many other interesting and surprising districts to be seen in the amazing city of Paris. For example, La Défense district, even though it is the business district of Paris, has many wonders to be discovered and you can lose yourself there for an entire day.
This district is actually very different from the typical tourist areas of the city. It is located west of the French capital, is made up of networks of offices, companies and skyscrapers, and we highly recommend that you visit it.
We would like to give you a small guide to some of the must-visit areas of La Défense district so that you can make the most of your time here and not miss anything. The best and most stress-free way to get to Paris is by our high-speed trains from Renfe-SNCF in Cooperation. Travelling to Paris could not be easier!
The Arch of Défense
The Arch of Défense – an innovative monument that does not have to envy the Arc de Triomphe in Paris
This cube-shaped Arch is definitely the most emblematic monument of this district. It was actually the winner of a national design competition that was put in place by President François Mitterrand in 1989. Since then, it has become one of the icons of the French capital. Its shape stands out at 110 meters high and you could actually fit Notre Dame inside the middle whole of the arch. That should give you an idea of just how big it is.
An outdoor museum
Whether visiting places with kids or with your partner, we can all admit that we all love anything free. You may think that a business area of the city would not be a place for this but La Défense District has over 60 pieces of art such as vibrant sculptures from Joan Miró, Calder, César Baldaccini or Louis-Ernest Barrias to name some. This is an art lover’s dream.
Les Quatre Temps
Paris is widely known for its attraction for the shopaholics that come from all over the globe so it is no shock that la Défense has its own shopping centre, Les Quatre Temps, famous for not only its size but also for its variety of shops
. It impresses visitors with its 100,000 m2 surface and has everything from exclusive brands to the typical retail shops that we have all grown to love in Europe. So, why not take a look, even if just for window shopping?
La Défense unites modern with traditional, creating perfect harmony in a historic city like Paris
Notre-Dame de Pentecôte
La Défense district is quite a modern, cool-looking neighbourhood and one of the most peculiar buildings here is the Notre-Dame de Pentecôte church. It doesn't look like the typical church at all, as it has a very modern facade and blends in perfectly with the appearance of the neighbourhood. However, what gives it away is the huge cross that welcomes you. Built just two decades ago, its mission has always been to serve as a place of complete disconnection for employees who work in that area – a lovely idea.
El barrio de la Défense de París
You wouldn't imagine the Berlin Wall to be in Paris in your wildest dreams, but one of La Défense's best-kept secrets
is that it houses a section of this iconic historical monument. It is not very visible, so finding it will be quite a challenge unless you know exactly where it is. Let us give you a hint: you can find it next to Notre-Dame de Pentecôte.