As I didn’t grow up in a big town, I often feel like escaping the big city. To do so, it is sometimes not even necessary to really leave Paris: the city contains several intra-muros villages that make you feel like you are on the French countryside.
There are several area’s in Paris that previously used to provide housing for factory workers and that magically never became the victim of megalomanic urbanization projects. The few streets that make up this neighborhood are a lovely example, and I literally only discovered it by stumbling upon it during a walk to the Parc Montsouris.
I first assumed that the Cité Florale is called as such for the many flowers and plants that beautifully decorate the houses, but actually it’s the street names that are poetically called ‘rue des Iris’ or ‘rue des Orchidées’. Could it be any cuter?
The Cité Florale is a mini-destination in a very residential area, and is probably the quietest place I have visited in Paris so far. Out of respect for the inhabitants of its doll-like houses I would almost advise to speak quietly when you visit, as any voice of an intruder is likely to be noticed.
Cute as it is, it will take you no longer than 5 minutes to see all of this micro-neighborhood, so combine it with a visit to the Butte aux Cailles.