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Valentine's Walk in Paris - rue de la Colombe


image: en.wikipedia.org

Well, P'Nicher's, we've arrived at the most loved up and romantic day of the year - Valentine's Day. While arguably much less commercial than in the States, there is no doubt of all the romance to be found in Paris - she is, after all, the City of Love...


Let's take a P'Niche peek at my absolute top-favorite street in all of Paris - we won't even need the P'Niche Time Travel Machine as the street is so well preserved in all her medieval glory. Welcome to la rue de la Colombe (Street of the Dove)...



Well ok, ONE brief stop in the P'Niche Time Machine (who can resist?) as we speak of lovers (and you might want to swing by the - very close - home of the OG lovers of Paris in the 11th century - Héloïse and Abelard). The site of Héloïse's house is located at 11, quai aux Fleurs (also located in the 4th arrondissement) and has a bird's eye (dove's eye?) view of the Seine. More on those star crossed lovers soon, so do subscribe to Parisian Niche for more...


Ok, we're back to the 1200's and the construction of everyone's (well most people's) favorite cathedral - Notre Dame de Paris. (See you in December 2024 for the glorious re-opening, huzzah!)


As legend narrates, a talented sculptor from Brittany (who was employed on the works of the cathedral) was living over at (what we now call) 4, rue de la Colombe (that'll be important in a minute)...


This charming Breton gentleman kept a couple of domesticated doves as his pets (as one does).


Sadly, one day, a terrific storm happened and his medieval home had collapsed under the weight of the fierce weather. Uh-oh! Monsieur Breton's pet birds were still inside - DUN DUN DUN!



image: Chrissy Consolé

Now, here's where we get to the Valentine's romance of it all...


Through struggle, hard work, or divine intervention (hey, Notre Dame, after all), the male dove (let's call him Louis) was able to get himself freed from the rubble.

However, the female dove (let's call her Marie) was still stuck inside unable to get free!


Well, true love would not be swayed and Louis never forsook his one true lovebird, Marie, bringing her food, seed, and water (from the Seine, no less!) for over a week...


Le sigh, le swoon...




image: Chrissy Consolé

Finally, after about a week or so, neighbors and passersby began to notice our brave and gallant Louis Dove returning each day to care for his Marie.


Took them long enough!


Overwhelmed by Louis' devotion, they began to dig out the Breton sculptor's rubbly home remnants, and Marie was able to make her way out - at last!


After resting for the evening, on the following morning, the doves rose in the sky performing a sort of "thank you dance" for those who helped to reunite the pair. You cannot make this stuff up! (Well, technically, you can, and might have, but the story is so dear and delightful, we're gonna go with it...) Louis + Marie 4Ever!



Recalling that back in ye olde medieval days, streets took their names from what they sold, produced, or were known for, this little jewel came to be aptly and lovingly titled rue de la Colombe, "Street of the Dove."


A plaque on the little street also tells the story of the charming lovers who overcame much to be together - a real Valentine, I tell ya!



image: Chrissy Consolé

If you are inclined to stay a while on your dreamy V-Day walk, you can certainly enjoy a lovely meal at Les Deux Colombes.


While having many iterations over the years (even as a saucy cabaret), since 2020, and under the leadership of Vincent Kupelian, you can enjoy a très romantique and gourmet masterpiece (oui, en terrace) in the warmer weather...




image: Chrissy Consolé

As you stroll onward, you might notice a change in the unique cobblestones - this is because you are now crossing what was the original wall of Paris.


We can recall that what is now flat was once 7 or 8 meters high and nearly 3 meters wide.


A sweet little whispered remembrance of the days of Lutèce, which was left untouched by Haussmann's renovations...



You might even venture onwards, taking a left to see 24, rue Chanoinesse, location of the wildly Insta-famous "Au Vieux Paris d'Arcole," known for sweeping wisteria (or whimsical holiday lights and décor) if you time it right.


And you'll be pleasantly surprised to know that it's not just great for photos - the meal, delightful service, staff, and (very accessible!) wine cave are all top notch - P'Niche gladly recommends...



image: Chrissy Consolé

Ready to check out the romance for yourself this Valentine's day? Wonderful!


4, rue de la Colombe

Métro: Cité (Line 4)

Pont Marie (Line 7)


The street remains open, but you would want to check availability / make a reservation at the restaurant, based on availability.


So, P'Niche, what is your favorite street in Paris? Let us know in the comments below et à bientôt!


6 comments

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6 Comments


Debra Borchert
Debra Borchert
Feb 20

I must return just for this street. Merci for the beautiful story, Chrissy!

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chrissy
Feb 23
Replying to

I hope you do and cannot wait to hear what you think upon seeing it with new eyes! :)

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bobkolinski
Feb 15

Thank you as always CC ❤️ 🕊️

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chrissy
Feb 16
Replying to

you are le BEST, bob, merci!

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Susan Maxheim Carter
Susan Maxheim Carter
Feb 14

The restaurants at that spot have changed many times over the years but in 1989 there was a beautiful white tablecloth restaurant, aptly named La Columbe, where we had dinner at the suggestion of a chef who had worked there before moving to the US. He even gave us a note to give to the owner so we would receive special attention. A truly great memory.

Sukicart

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chrissy
Feb 16
Replying to

how cool is that - makes me want to check it out even more and appreciate you sharing that lovely memory! 😍

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