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Maps of Paris

Plan de Paris / City Map of Paris

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JohoMaps! 2005-06


City Map of Paris
  Date:   Sep, 2005 (2nd Ed)
Map format:   jpeg
Dimension:   1065 x 928 pixels (1.28 mb)
Copyright holder:   Johomaps!
Conditions of using this map:   Unlimited educational use, free download.  Free web posting with web link to
Computer Specifics:   Prepared using Adobe Illustrator

Carte du Metro de Paris / Metro Map of Paris

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JohoMaps! 2006


Metro Map of Paris
  Date:   Sep, 2006
Map format:   jpeg
Dimension:   917 x 850 pixels (908 kb)
Copyright holder:   Johomaps!
Conditions of using this map:   All rights reserved.  Contact for permission
Computer Specifics:   Prepared using Adobe Illustrator

Carte du Metro de Paris / Metro Map of Paris

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JohoMaps! 2006


Region Map of Paris (Geographic)
  Date:   Sep, 2006
Map format:   jpeg
Dimension:   918 x 799 pixels (1.28 mb)
Copyright holder:   Johomaps!
Conditions of using this map:   All rights reserved.  Contact for permission
Computer Specifics:   Prepared using Adobe Illustrator
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City Info

Parisien / Parisienne (French)
Parisian (English)

Paris (From Wikipedia)
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Paris is the capital city of France and a French département. Situated on the banks of the river Seine in north-central France, it is also the capital of the Île-de-France région (also known as "Paris Region"), which encompasses Paris and its suburbs. Paris had an estimated mid-2004 population of 2,144,700. The Paris urban area, extending well beyond the city boundaries, has today an estimated population of 9.93 million. The Paris metropolitan area (including satellite towns) stood at 11.5 million in 1999 and is one of the most populated metropolitan areas in Europe.

The Paris Region is France's most dynamic centre of economic activity. It produces more than a quarter of France's wealth, with a GDP of €478.7 billion (US$595.3 billion) in 2005.  With La Défense, one of the largest business districts in Europe, the Paris urban area (unité urbaine) also hosts the head offices of almost half of the major French companies, as well as the offices of major international firms. Paris is a leading global cultural, business and political centre and has a major international influence in fashion, gastronomy and the arts. It is widely regarded as one of the world's major global cities, with the headquarters of international organisations such as UNESCO, the OECD, the ICC, or the informal Paris Club.

The city, which is renowned for its defining neo-classical architecture, hosts many museums and galleries and has an active nightlife. The most recognisable symbol of Paris is the 324 metre (1,063 ft) Eiffel Tower on the banks of the Seine. Dubbed "the City of Light" (la Ville Lumière) since the 19th century, Paris is regarded by some as one of the most romantic cities in the world. It is also the most visited city in the world, with more than 30 million visitors per year.

Nicknamed "the City of Light" (la Ville Lumière) since the 19th century, the city of Paris also has a reputation as a "romantic" city and the "heart of Europe". The most recognisable symbol of Paris is the 324 metre (1,063 ft) brown metal Eiffel Tower located on the banks of the Seine. Paris is also internationally renowned for its defining neoclassical architecture and its influence in fashion and the arts.

As one of the main cultural and political centers in Europe since the early Middle Ages, Paris contains many vestiges from its past including numerous art galleries, museums and theatres. More recently, it has grown into a significant centre of international trade with ever-growing modern business districts, including La Défense, which forms a secondary city centre. Paris hosts the headquarters of many international trade and social organisations, including the OECD and UNESCO in addition to the head offices of nearly half of all French companies and offices of many major international firms.

The city of Paris within its administrative limits has an estimated 2004 population of 2,144,700, but over the last century the city has grown well beyond its administrative boundaries, so that the population of Paris urban area (the contiguous built-up area) is estimated at 9.9 million in 2005 and the population of Paris metropolitan area (also including satellite cities) is estimated at 11.6 million people in 2005. The Île-de-France région, of which Paris is the capital, produces over a quarter of France's wealth, with a GDP of nearly €450 billion.


The earliest signs of permanent habitation in the Paris area date from around 4200 BC. Celtic migrants began to settle the area from 250 BC, and the Parisii tribe of these, known as boatmen and traders, established a settlement near the river Seine from around then.

Westward Roman conquest and the ensuing Gallic War overtook the Paris basin from 52 BC, and by the end of the century Paris' Île de la Cité island and Left Bank Sainte Geneviève Hill had become the Roman town of Lutetia. Gallo-Roman Lutèce would expand over the following centuries, becoming a prosperous city with palaces, a forum, baths, temples, theatres and an amphitheatre.

As other Roman cities, early Lutetia was structured as a regular grid (300 feet squares), with the cardo maximus (main North-South axis) being the current Rue Saint-Jacques, and the decumani (East-West axis) were parallel to current Bd Saint-Germain and Rue des Ecoles. The "point zero", or groma of this grid was probably located at the southwest corner of the forum, which corresponds to nos. 172 and 174 of Rue Saint-Jacques: the highest point on the Saint-Geneviève hill.

The collapse of the Roman empire and third-century Germanic invasions sent the city into a period of decline: by 400 AD Lutèce, largely abandoned by its inhabitants, was little more than a garrison town entrenched into its hastily fortified central island. The city would reclaim its original "Paris" appellation towards the end of the Roman occupation.

Middle Ages

Around AD 500, Paris was the capital of the Frankish king Clovis I, who commissioned the first cathedral and abbey. On the death of Clovis, the Frankish kingdom was divided, and Paris became the capital of a much smaller sovereign state. By the time of the Carolingian dynasty (9th century), Paris was little more than a feudal county stronghold. The Counts of Paris gradually rose to prominence and eventually wielded greater power than the Kings of Francia occidentalis. Odo, Count of Paris was elected king in place of the incumbent Charles the Fat, namely for the fame he gained in his defence of Paris during the Viking siege of 885-886. Although the Cité island had survived the Viking attacks, most of the unprotected Left Bank city was destroyed; rather than rebuild there, after drying marshlands to the north of the island, Paris began to expand onto the Right Bank. In 987 AD, Hugh Capet, Count of Paris, was elected King of France, founding the Capetian dynasty which would raise Paris to become France's capital.

From 1190, King Philip Augustus enclosed Paris on both banks with a wall that had the Louvre as its western fortress and in 1200 chartered the University of Paris which brought visitors from across Europe. It was during this period that the city developed a spatial distribution of activities that exists even today: the central island housed government and ecclesiastical institutions, the left bank became a scholastic centre with the University and colleges, while the right bank developed as the centre of commerce and trade around the central Les Halles marketplace.

Paris lost its position as seat of the French realm while occupied by the English-ally Burgundians during the Hundred Years' War, but regained its title when Charles VII reclaimed the city in 1437; although Paris was capital once again, the Crown preferred to remain in its Loire Valley castles. During the French Wars of Religion, Paris was a stronghold of the Catholic party, culminating in the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre (1572). King Henry IV re-established the royal court in Paris in 1594 after he captured the city from the Catholic party. During the Fronde, Parisians rose in rebellion and the royal family fled the city (1648). King Louis XIV then moved the royal court permanently to Versailles in 1682. A century later, Paris was the centre stage for the French Revolution, with the Storming of the Bastille in 1789 and the overthrow of the monarchy in 1792.

Nineteenth Century

The Industrial Revolution, the French Second Empire, and the Belle Époque brought Paris the greatest development in its history. From the 1840s, rail transport allowed an unprecedented flow of migrants into Paris attracted by employment in the new industries in the suburbs. The city underwent a massive renovation under Napoleon III and his préfet Haussmann, who leveled entire districts of narrow-winding medieval streets to create the network of wide avenues and neo-classical façades of modern Paris.

Cholera epidemics in 1832 and 1849 affected the population of Paris — the 1832 epidemic alone claimed 20,000 of the then population of 650,000.  Paris also suffered greatly from the siege ending the Franco-Prussian War (1870-1871), and the ensuing civil war Commune of Paris (1871) killed thousands and sent many of Paris's administrative centres (and city archives) up in flames.

Paris recovered rapidly from these events to host the famous Universal Expositions of the late nineteenth century. The Eiffel Tower was built for the French Revolution centennial 1889 Universal Exposition, as a "temporary" display of architectural engineering prowess but remained the world's tallest building until 1930, and today is the city's best-known landmark. The first line of the Paris Métro opened for the 1900 Universal Exposition and was an attraction in itself for visitors from the world over. Paris's World's Fair years also consolidated its position in the tourist industry and as an attractive setting for international technology and trade shows.

Twentieth Century

During World War I, Paris was at the forefront of the war effort, having been spared a German invasion by the French and British victory at the First Battle of the Marne in 1914. In 1918-1919, it was the scene of Allied victory parades and peace negotiations. In the inter-war period Paris was famed for its cultural and artistic communities and its nightlife. The city became a melting pot of artists from around the world, from exiled Russian composer Stravinsky and Spanish painters Picasso and Dalí to American writer Hemingway. In June 1940, five weeks after the start of the German attack on France, a partially-evacuated Paris fell to German occupation forces who remained until the city was liberated by the 2nd Armored Division of General Leclerc in late August 1944. Central Paris endured WW II practically unscathed, as there were no strategic targets for bombers (train stations in central Paris are terminal stations; major factories were located in the suburbs), and also because German General von Choltitz refused to carry out Hitler's order that all Parisian monuments be destroyed before any German retreat.

In the post-war era, Paris experienced its largest development since the end of the Belle Époque in 1914. The suburbs began to expand considerably, with the construction of large social estates known as cités and the beginning of the business district La Défense. A comprehensive express subway network, the RER, was built to complement the Métro and serve the distant suburbs, while a network of freeways was developed in the suburbs, centered on the Périphérique expressway circling around the city.

Since the 1970s, many inner suburbs of Paris (especially the eastern ones) have experienced deindustrialization, and the once-thriving cités have gradually become ghettos for immigrants and oases of unemployment. At the same time, the City of Paris (within its Périphérique ring) and the western and southern suburbs have successfully shifted their economic base from traditional manufacturing to high value-added services and high-tech manufacturing, generating great wealth for their residents whose per capita income is among the highest in Europe. The resulting widening social gap between these two areas has led to periodic unrest since the mid-1980s, such as the 2005 riots which largely concentrated in the northeastern suburbs.

Urbanism and architecture

"Modern" Paris is the result of a vast mid-19th-century urban remodelling. For centuries it had been a labyrinth of narrow streets and half-timber houses, but beginning in 1852, the Baron Haussmann's vast urbanisation levelled entire quarters to make way for wide avenues lined with neo-classical stone buildings of bourgeoise standing; most of this 'new' Paris is the Paris we see today. These Second Empire plans are in many cases still actual, as the city of Paris imposes the then-defined "alignement" law (imposed position defining a predetermined street width) on many new constructions. A building's height was also defined according to the width of the street it lines, and Paris' building code has seen few changes since the mid-19th century to allow for higher constructions. It is for this reason, save for a few 'pointed' examples, that Paris seems an essentially flat city when compared to some of the world's other metropoles.

Paris' unchanging borders, strict building codes and lack of developable land have together contributed in creating a phenomenon called muséification (or "museumification") as, at the same time as they strive to preserve Paris' historical past, existing laws make it difficult to create within city limits the larger buildings and utilities needed for a growing population. Many of Paris' institutions and economic infrastructure are already located in, or are planning on moving to, the suburbs. The financial (La Défense) business district, the main food wholesale market (Rungis), major renowned schools (École Polytechnique, HEC, ESSEC, INSEAD, etc.), world famous research laboratories (in Saclay or Évry), the largest sport stadium (Stade de France), and some ministries (namely the Ministry of Transportation) are located outside of the city of Paris. The National Archives of France are due to relocate to the northern suburbs before 2010.

Paris has over 2,400 km of underground passageways dedicated to the evacuation of Paris' liquid wastes. Most of these even today date from the late 19th century, a result of the combined plans of the Préfet Haussmann and the civil engineer Eugène Belgrand to improve the then very unsanitary conditions in the Capital. Maintained by a round-the-clock service since their construction, only a small percentage of Paris' sewer réseau has needed complete renovation. The entire Paris network of sewers and collectors has been managed since the late 20th century by a computerised network system, known under the acronym "G.A.AS.PAR", that controls all of Paris' water distribution, even the flow of the river Seine through the capital.

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Web Maps (with Rating by Johomaps *) - External Links

Paris Balades General Rating:
  • A simple map of Paris that lets you click to one of the 20 districts (arrondisments) of Paris, as well as a few important districts outside the city (like La Défense)  
  • Detailed descriptions of many important buildings and attractions
  • User-friendliness: 3.5/5
  • Printer-friendliness: 1/5
  • Special Features: Detailed description on each district.  Not the traditional zoom in zoom out function.  District by district is more user-friendly because it is hard to figure out where you are looking at with traditional zoom in zoom out function.
  • The detailed map (of each arrondisments) is put in a framed page, and the map frame is too small.  However, you can resize the frame by dragging it.  Do so!
Required Program None
Orthophoto (Date: 2002)
Road Names and Highway Numbers (no hwy numbers)
Additional Info N/A


Google Maps
  • High Definition satellite photo
  • User-friendliness: 4/5
  • Printer-friendliness: 4/5
  • Special Features: Hybrid Maps, i.e., highway info projected on satellite images.  Images are scaled and projections are very accurate
  • Good zoom in and zoom out function
  • Detailed info only appears at appropriate levels to avoid cluttering the map.
Required Program N/A
Road Names and Highway Numbers


Reference Maps and Info  - External Links

Map and info of Métro System of Paris (Urban Rail. net)
Maps and the most updated info on the subway (métrpolitaine) of Paris


* Ratings are based solely on opinions of our map reviewers.  Financial support and benefits to the web site have no influence on the ratings.