The Halles , covered market of St Denis!

Ok so now let’s take you out from Paris on the beltway around it, working class neighborhoods not seldom seen by visitors but with goodies to boot. Mind you not the kind of place you would come at night, but daytime it is an eye opener in French life.

Let me tell you a bit on the Halles or covered market of Saint Denis, dept 93 or Seine-Saint-Denis, in the ïle de France region, and just outside Paris.

st denis

This is a very colorful market with food from all over the world and people crowds buying all these goodies. It’s a place to really come into the working class daily French life and get to know the country a bit more. Again, for the intellectual curious is a must on daytime.

The Marché de centre ville or Downtown Market is open Tuesday from 8h to 12h30, Friday from 8h to 13h, Sunday from 8h to 13h30. On the place Jean Jaurès, you have items for the person (clothing etc) and the house. In the covered Halles and around it, you have about 70 food stalls from all over the world.

This is the largest market in Ile-de-France,region with a total of 450 merchants. On the weekend, up to 60,000 people can pass under the imposing halles of Eiffel style, built in the early 20C. The first traces of trade at this place dating back to the 7C, the Fair of Landy.

st denis

A bit of history I like

In 1229-1230, carpenters built a new hall; the old ones are covered and a wall is erected between the two halls. In 1231, the intension was to build the halles of Saint-Denis. In 1444, Charles VII reestablished the Fair of Landy inside the borough of Saint-Denis where are two large grains of covered halles. The monks had done a fair job of the said halles and make several lodges by the place de la Panthiére to lodge and receive the merchants and their merchandises. In 1556, Henry II authorizes the religious to build halles, lodges, benches and in 1567, the four gates of the corn market were mentioned, and in 1571 part of the Landy and Saint-Denis fairs took place in the adjoining markets of Beauvais (also known as wheat) and Rouen. along the rue du Pilori, they both open in the place Panetière and behind on the courtyard.The old halles are removed around 1854 and replaced by four metal halles on the market square, the current place Jean-Jaurès.

They are on the parvis in front of the famous Basilica, you go around the Hôtel de Ville or  city /town hall building and on the other side you will see the Halles. Great parking Basilica for me here! Right underground above is the Centre Commercial St Denis or shopping center, more modern. Info in French here: Shopping center Basilique in St Denis

Some webpages to help you plan your trip to the covered market or Halles are

City of Saint Denis on the Halles

Tourist office dept 93 Seine Saint Denis on the Halles

And there you go a nice walk into working class France and a wonderful vibrant market where prices will be a  pleasant surprise to all. Enjoy the Halles of Saint Denis

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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