Montmartre is home to many iconic Parisian images, the Basilica of the Sacré Coeur towering above the city, the red windmill of the Moulin Rouge and artists line up on the cobblestoned streets. There are two things Montmartre is known for, religion and art. The history of worship in Montmartre can be traced back through the centuries, dating as far back as the Romans, then with the creation of the Church of Saint Peter and now with the the Basilica of the Sacré Coeur. Just as people have flocked to Montmartre to worship so to have artist flocked here to work and live including artists like Salvador Dali, Amedeo Modigliani and Pablo Piscasso. Today the area is probably too expensive to be home to many struggling artists, however, many of the cobblestoned streets, especially those on the way to the Sacré Coeur are full of artists demonstrating their talents for the tourists. In a strange way you can’t help but feel that Montmartre is religion and debauchery coexist, what with the close proximity of so many important churches to many dance halls like the Moulin Rouge.
There are several ways to explore Montmartre. You can follow the herds of tourists making their way up the steps to Sacré Coeur to take selfies in front of the church. The other option is to get lost in the cobbled streets, stopping for a wine in one of the many wine bars and cute cafes. Or if you are like us you can do a combination of both! We started our exploration by getting off at the Blanch metro stop. As we ascended the steps of the metro we were greeted by the Moulin Rouge’s red windmill- perfect way to start the day! After a quick peep into the foyer and the gift shop we wandered down the Rue Lepic to Cafe des Deux Moulins, the cafe made famous by the film Amelie. We slowly made our way uphill, abandoning all maps, but knowing so long as we headed uphill we would reach the majestic Sacré Coeur. We were particularly lucky to experience such beautiful weather as the white domes of the Basilica seemed to sparkle against the blue backdrop. Just be sure to watch out for pickpocketing. After visiting Sacré Coeur we simply got lost in the streets, stoping into stores that looked interesting and enjoying some people watching and a glass of red wine.