Explore the Covered Passages in Paris, Episode 29

Categories: First Time in Paris, Paris, Paris Walks

This episode features our frequent and very popular guest Elyse Rivin. If you enjoy her episodes, please consider supporting her on Patreon.

Today we explore the Covered Passages in Paris and why return visitors to the City of Light should definitely consider visiting some of them. There are lots of them all over Paris, but in today's episode we are discussing our favorites.

These passages are known under many names: "galeries" or "passages couverts" in French. Occasionally they are also called "arcades" or "shopping galeries".  No matter what you call them, they are a nice place to go explore on a rainy day!

Elyse explains how they came to be historically, why she likes them so much, and suggests a few you may want to concentrate on because they offer particularly wonderful architecture or ambiance.

What You Will Learn About in this Episode

    • What are the Covered Passages?
    • Where can you explore the Covered Passages in Paris?
    • How French Kings and Noblemen created the Galleries
    • The Galleries were the original shopping malls
    • Explore the Covered Passages in Paris:
      • Passage Panorama (Near Galeries Lafayette and Printemps, 1799)
      • Passage Jouffroy (1847)
      • Passage Verdeau (think "verre d'eau!", 1847)
      • Galerie Vivienne (Palais Royal area)
      • Galerie Véro-Daudat
      • Passage Brady (ehtnic foods from Pakistan and India)
      • Galerie Colbert near the Bibliothèque Nationale
      • Passage du Grand Cerf between rue Saint-Denis and place de la République
      • Passage des Princes
      • Passage de Choiseul (1825, had theaters and cabarets)


Learn More: Paris Walks, How to Skip the Lines in France





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covered passages in paris: vivienne
La galerie Vivienne, photo Annie Sargent.
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Show Notes 

Categories: First Time in Paris, Paris, Paris Walks

12 Replies to “Explore the Covered Passages in Paris, Episode 29”

  1. I have read about these galléries, but have never heard such a complete explanation. Your descriptions and the beautiful photos make hem come alive. Would it be possible for you to post a map that would show where they are so I can find them the next time I visit Paris? I love every one of your episodes. Thank you.

    1. When we lived there, they were known as passages in French. If you Google “Paris passages,” You will come up with several sites listing them and telling some facts about them. I put the addresses together in a word document, and we went on a treasure hunt one day, finding a slew of them. Many have very unique shops. We bought a Paris panorama photo in one shop, that we took home wrapped up in a metal tube. It was 3 feet by 8 inches. Costly to frame, but a great souvenir.

      The passages are a fun thing to do that isn’t well known to tourists–yet!

      1. Hello Cindy,

        In French they are definitely know as “passages couverts” or “passages” like Elyse mentions at the beginning of the show, but I asked my cousin who lives in Paris and she only knows them as “galeries”, so it depends on who you ask I guess! Thanks for your feedback!

        1. That’s the part I forgot–couverts. Thanks! I knew there was something missing.

          By either name, it’s a unique thing to do when visiting.

    2. Hello Mary,

      Thank you for the kind words! I looked into putting maps on the website before and it was more complicated than I have time for right now. But I’ll be adding the addresses for the passages Elyse mentions by name shortly. Happy listening!

      1. Hi Annie,
        If you’ve put up a list of the names&addresses of les passages couverts, could you post a link to it here please?

  2. Bonjours Mesdames,

    Merci pour le episode. Quel est le nom de livre avec des passages couverts?

    Merci beaucoup,
    John Lopez

  3. Thank you ladies for mentioning my itunes comment during your episode 29 podcast, it made me feel special . Like I mentioned before ,I enjoy all your podcasts in particular the one regarding vacationing in France . I would like to visit Mont Saint-Michel next year, will you be doing a podcast on this area?
    Ursula Panizo.