Second Arrondissement of Paris


The Second arrondissement of Paris is home to the Stock Exchange (la Bourse) and is bordered to the North by the Grands Boulevards.

A few words about the 2nd arrondissement

The Second arrondissement of Paris (le deuxième arrondissement) is situated on the right bank of River Seine between the Grands Boulevards and the northern limits of the First arrondissement.

It is the smallest arrondissement of Paris, covering an area of 0.992 km2 with a population of 22,927 (2011). The 2nd arrt is home to an important business district, centred around the Opéra Garnier, second to France after La Défense. The former Paris Bourse (stock exchange) is found in its centre and occupies the Palais Brongniart, a rectangular neoclassical edifice completed in 1826. The Paris Bourse is surrounded by a large number of banking headquarters.

The 2nd arrt is also well-known for the textile trade known as the Sentier.

There are several covered shopping arcades from the 19th century – the Passages – which were the precursors to the modern shopping malls: Passage des Panoramas, Galerie Vivienne, Passage Choiseul…

The shopping street of Rue Montorgueil straddles the First and Second arrondissements. Lined with restaurants, cafés, boulangeries, poissonneries, fromageries, fleuristes, cavistes and épiceries fines, the street is a great place to enjoy daily shopping the Parisian way.

On Rue Étienne Marcel, the defensive tower of Tour Jean Sans Peur (John the Fearless) is the last remaining vestige of the former Hôtel de Bourgogne, built between 1409 and 1411 by Jean sans Peur, Duke of Burgundy.

Public institutions and organisations in the 2nd arrondissement

Many public institutions have their seat in the 2nd arrt:

  • the AMF – Autorité des Marchés Financiers (Financial Markets Authority), which is the stock market regulators in France.
  • the former headquarters of the Bibliothèque nationale de France (site Richelieu)
  • the AFP (Agence France Presse) on Place de la Bourse
  • the Parisian headquarters of Le Crédit Lyonnais (LCL) bank.

Main places of interest in the 2nd arrondissement

The 2nd arrondissement is usually bypassed by tourists as it does not contain many famous landmarks and monuments. However, it does connect the touristic 1st arrondissement to the shopping precinct of Boulevard Haussmann.

The main places of interest in the 2nd arrondissement are:

  • the Palais Brongniart (Paris Stock Exchange)
  • the covered glazed Passages, particularly Passage du Panorama
  • the semi-pedestrian food street of Rue Montorgueil
  • the Tour Jean Sans Peur (Tower of John the Fearless)
  • The Grand Rex cinema. Its main auditorium is the largest cinema theatre in Europe.

  • Our pages on the 2nd ARRONDISSEMENT

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    About Author

    Pierre is a French/Australian who is passionate about France and its culture. He grew up in France and Germany and has also lived in Australia and England. In 2014 he moved back to Europe from Sydney with his wife and daughter to be closer to their families and to France. He has a background teaching French and holds a Master of Translating and Interpreting English-French with the degree of Master of International Relations and a degree of Economics and Management.

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