The Latin Quarter and its sumptuous Pantheon

If you ask any Parisian under the age of 25 what their favourite district is, chances are they'll say the Latin Quarter. It has to be said that this traditionally student neighbourhood knows how to attract young people with its affordable bars and lively atmosphere. But if you're not in that age bracket, don't let that put you off! With its rich history, typically Parisian restaurants and small boutiques, the Latin Quarter has a lot to offer! At its heart, the Panthéon is a must-see in the capital. It's world-famous for its architecture and for its crypt, which houses the remains of famous figures from French history such as Jean Moulin, Victor Hugo and Marie Curie. You can also climb up to the balcony of its dome, which offers one of the finest views of Paris.

The Panthéon dome in Paris.

- © Tupungato / Shutterstock
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In the heart of the Latin Quarter...

Located on the left bank of the Seine, in the 5th arrondissement, the Latin Quarter is the oldest part of Paris and has always had a large student population. The origin of its name dates back to the Middle Ages, when many of the local schools taught in Latin. The famous Sorbonne University, founded in 1257, is still located here. A stone's throw away, the Sainte-Geneviève library dates from the same period and is still in use today!

Une rue du quartier latin.

- © Kamira / Shutterstock

Today, the district is popular with Parisians and tourists alike for its friendly atmosphere, lively café terraces and cheap beers. Rue Mouffetard and Place de la Contrescarpe are the epicentre of this young, relaxed atmosphere. But visitors sometimes prefer Saint-Michel, with its typically Parisian architecture and trendy bars and restaurants.

The Latin Quarter is also very popular for the traces of the past that can be seen along its streets. Start with the Arènes de Lutèce, a Gallo-Roman amphitheatre built in the 2nd century, where gladiator fights and theatrical performances were held. Accessible free of charge, they are a reminder of just how ancient the history of Paris really is.

The arenas of Lutetia.

- © Antoine2K / Shutterstock

The district also boasts the Saint-Michel fountain, built under Napoleon III, the 15th-century church of Saint-Séverin and the capital's oldest tree, planted in 1601, in the Square René Viviani. Want to go even further back in time? Head for the Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle in the Jardin des Plantes, itself created in the 17th century by Louis XIII to train doctors in medicinal plants.

Focus on the Panthéon

Located on Mont Sainte Geneviève, the Pantheon is a neo-classical monument built between 1764 and 1790. It is one of the masterpieces of Soufflot architecture and was originally intended to be a church. Today, however, it is a different story: all the French personalities who have left their mark on the country's history are buried here. Scientists, philosophers, artists, writers and statesmen - France's greatest are buried here for eternity.

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To name but a few: Voltaire, Victor Hugo, Jean Jacques Rousseau, Jean Jaurès, Emile Zola, Jean Moulin and André Malraux all rest in peace here. Located in the heart of Paris, it was a privileged witness to the history of France and could only welcome within its walls the greatest figures of this country. It is a shame, however, that only six women are buried here: Simone Veil, Marie Curie, Germaine Tillion, Geneviève de Gaulle-Anthonioz, Sophie Berthelot and Joséphine Baker.

The Pantheon in the Latin Quarter.

- © V_E / Shutterstock

Visitors to the Pantheon will discover its grandiose architecture, inspired by Agrippa's Pantheon in Rome. Inside, ancient paintings adorn the walls of the monument, contrasting skilfully with the contemporary works of art by Pascal Dusapin and Anselm Kiefer on display since 2020. In the middle, a Foucault pendulum installed in 1851 tirelessly marks the rotation of the Earth.

You can go down into the crypt to see the vaults of the personalities buried here. Information panels summarise the lives and works of these great men and women. But the Panthéon has another advantage: while tourists flock to the top of the Eiffel Tower, the Tour Montparnasse and the Arc de Triomphe, it is the Panthéon that offers the best 360° view of Paris from the balcony of its dome!

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Practical information for the Panthéon

As well as its sublime architecture, the Panthéon is home to the remains of people who have left their mark on French history, making it a must-see when visiting Paris. Allow around an hour and a half to visit the main room, the crypt and the balcony of the dome.

🚌 How do I get to the Panthéon?

The Pantheon is located in the heart of the Latin Quarter. It is not far from the Cardinal Lemoine metro station served by line 10, and the Luxembourg station through which the RER B passes. Buses 21, 27, 38, 82, 84, 85 and 89 also stop nearby. Velib' stations are also available nearby.

⏰ Pantheon opening times

The Panthéon is open every day of the year. It is open from 10am to 6pm from 1 October to 31 March and until 6.30pm the rest of the year.

The Pantheon in Paris.

- © Christian Mueller / Shutterstock

👛 Prix du Panthéon

  • Normal price: €11.50
  • Panorama rate: €15
  • Under 26s from EU countries: free
  • Under 18s: free
  • Go City All-Inclusive Pass / Paris Museum Pass / Paris Passlib': free of charge

To find out all the prices and book your ticket online, go directly to the official website of the Centre des Monuments Nationaux.

A few tips for your visit

  • The Panthéon can be very busy, so book your ticket online to avoid the crowds!
  • Audio guides are available for an additional €3.
  • Minors may not visit the Pantheon without an adult.
  • Food is not permitted inside the monument.
  • Suitcases, selfie poles, tripods, motorbike helmets, scooters, rollerblades, sharp objects and glass bottles are not allowed inside the monument, which does not have changing rooms.
  • The Panthéon is accessible to people with reduced mobility.
by Editorial Team
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