In the suburbs of Paris, Saint-Denis is named after the Patron Saint of Paris, a Christian Martyr who was buried in the town after being executed at nearby Montmartre. Saint-Denis is located a little over 5 miles from the centre of Paris and is home to France’s national football stadium.
Best way to find your bearings: Saint-Denis is a suburban district of Paris, and you can use your Paris transport travel card (available from tourist offices and stations) to travel. Saint-Denis is on Metro line 13 which goes to iconic sites such as the Champs-Elysees and Les Invalides in the heart of Paris and from there to major city sites including the Eiffel Tower.
Wander: The Basilica of Saint-Denis is the town’s central point for tourists. The first Gothic monument in the world, it is an incredible building and is the last resting place for more than 100 French royals. A little bit off the beaten track for most Paris visitors, the enormous church is well worth the effort to get to.
You can walk alongside the Canal Saint-Denis, crommissioned by Napoleon in 1802, from the train station to Parc Villette, a large urban and cultural park in Paris. It’s about 5.5km and makes for a pleasant hike and is popular with cyclists and roller bladers. From Parc de Villette you can take a boat ride to the Musee d’Orsay.
Eating and Drinking: Brasseries and cafés abound in this energetic district of Paris.
Top Tip: Don’t miss the famous flea markets of Saint Ouen, the biggest in the world and a great place to wander and browse. There are loads of bars and cafés with a truly authentic vibe here. Nip to Les Abesses at the base of Montmartre which is close by.
(More about the St Ouen flea markets here)