Exploring Paris’s Abandoned Railway
We first noticed an abandoned railway in Paris while walking through the 14th arrondissement. A bridge went over an overgrown corridor with train tracks running along it. We decided it was something we should try to explore one day. Before long we found a news article about an abandoned railway in Paris which we figured must have been what we had seen in the 14th. The line was built in 1852 and closed in 1934 according to wiki. It seems to have been mostly left untouched since then which makes it a great place to explore in the middle of the city.
After searching through what other explorers have posted online about exploring the Paris’ abandoned railway, we tried to find an entrance to the railway described by one writer. The line could supposedly be entered not too far from Père Lachaise cemetery through a gate that was usually left open enough for people to squeeze through. The gate was locked tight when we found it though so we had to walk on the streets below the line for over an hour before finally finding a weak spot to get in. The entrance we used was located on the end of Villa du Bel Air (google maps), the fence is short enough in this area that it should be an easy climb for just about everyone.
The line is littered with graffiti. There was even a few people spraying some while we were exploring.
Even the bridges the line runs across are still standing over Paris’ busy streets. When we were walking below you would have never known the bridges were part of an abandoned rail line.
The elevated areas of the track offer a view into the courtyards of the many apartment buildings that line the rail line.
There are supposedly as many as 17 platforms and stations that still exist along the line. During our walk we came across what we assumed were at least a couple of them. Strange to imagine what these platforms might have looked like during there peak.
By the time we found an entrance to the line we didn’t have a lot of daylight left to explore. Supposedly some of the secret entrances to the Catacombs are located along la Petite Ceinture. We will definitely be going back to explore some more of Paris’ abandoned railway and hopefully find one of the entrances to the Catacombs as well.