When you reach the metro station Olympiades, you mustn’t miss out on a stroll around the Chinese Quarter, also called the ‘station neighbourhood’ (quartier de la gare).
Everything here has a Chinese touch from the supermarkets to the fast food shops. A little further along you’ll reach the Butte-aux-Cailles (butte means small hill). At 63 metres in height this hillock is bigger than that of Montmartre. Originally populated by windmills, craftsmen and merchants, today this busy area has the air of a provincial village. It also boasts the Piscine de la Butte-aux-Cailles (swimming pool), filled by hot artesian wells discovered in 1866 by Francois Arago. Not far away there is another little marvel: the Cité Florale (Floral City) whose houses are covered in lush vines and flowers and where nature seems to have taken the upper hand in the Parisian urban jungle. Still further on, you will see the Montsouris Park, 37 acres landscaped in the English style, and the Cité Internationale Universitaire, a student campus.
Also worth seeing: the Gobelins Manufactory, a tapestry factory founded in 1601 under Henri IV; the Church of Sainte-Anne de la Butte-aux-Cailles, in Romano-Byzantine style; the National Library of France, opened by President François Mitterand in 1995.