Les Grands Voisins: urban camping in the heart of Paris

Les Grands Voisins: urban camping in the heart of Paris

Where can you find alternative, budget, accommodation in central Paris from eight euros a night? Knock up a pair of earrings from a Nespresso pod? Or experience a Russian steam bath?

You know when you stumble on somewhere and you go ‘Wow, this is so cool!’ That happened to me when I walked into Les Grand Voisins, or the Great Neighbours.

Les Grands Voisins is a social diversity project that has taken over the disused St Vincent Paul Hospital. The project uses the building and it’s grounds to nurture creative businesses, artists, provides social housing while creating a space with educational, cultural and sports resources for local residents and tourists to enjoy.

Les Grands Voisins is where hipsters, the homeless and travellers, tourists and local Parisians happily co-exist on this three hectares between Port Royal and Denfert Rochereau, Paris.

What can you do at Les Grands Voisins?

Hang out at Le Lingerie

Lingeries Solidarity Cafe Les Grands Voisins Solidarity Cafe serves  Africainspired luncheses on Wednesdays and Thursdays.

From Friday to Sunday, Le Lingeries offers home cooked food from the team at Yes We Camp

There’s all day coffee and tea, cakes, cheese boards and on Sunday at around 11.30am you can pop in for brunch.

The Ressourcerie Creative


At first this looks like a big charity shop selling vintage bric-a-brac, clothes, books, furniture, crockery, fabric and haberdashery.

But there much more to the Ressourceries Creative; it’s an enterprise devoted to the social economy with the aim of recovering, and re-using goods we no longer want. It offers repair workshops for small appliances. And there are creative workshops, like making a pair of earrings or a necklace from Nespresso pods.

Classes and courses

ActivitiesLes Grands Voisins also offers a huge array of classes and courses including yoga, meditation, Chinese medicine, Shiatsu, Qi Gong, kids workshops, sewing, ceramics and much more.

You can even book yourself in for a Banya or Russian steam bath. It’s similar to a sauna where you can experience both wet and dry heat, and it’s here in Paris, at Les Grands Voisins, and it’s free! Each month Les Grand Voisins runs a rolling programme of activities.

Art Installations

SunloungersDotted around Les Grands Voisins are art installations. These artworks are called Ciudad Silencio, mobile sun loungers with disco ball designed by the Argentinian artist Pedro Marzorati, who invites you to relax and contemplate climate change.




Urban Camping

This I loved! This was awesome. Camping in Paris! From only eight euros a night!

The Paris urban camping experience provides alternative, accommodation in heart of Paris including private huts, tents, hammocks, stargazing cabin, along with an open air bathroom and laundry (including a bicycle powered washing machine – this gives a new meaning to the spin cycle!) and most importantly for the tech savvy traveller a recharge phone zone.

Accommodation booked via Les Grands Voisins, starts at eight euros per night.

[supsystic-gallery id=’6′]

Les Grands Voisins

Ancien hôpital Saint-Vincent-de-Paul
82, Avenue Denfert-Rochereau
75 014 Paris

Métro Denfert Rochereau
RER B Port Royal
Bus 38, N1

Cuddle Fairy
Hot Pink Wellingtons
A Mum Track Mind
Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday


  1. September 23, 2016 / 7:39 pm

    Now this sounds endlessly cool and something I must check out next time I’m in town! Thanks so much for sharing this hidden treasure on #fortheloveofBLOG x
    A Mum Track Mind recently posted…For The Love Of BLOG – #20My Profile

    • Tooting Mama
      September 23, 2016 / 9:44 pm

      Oh thank you! I just love searching out these little hidden gems, have a few more up my sleeve!

  2. September 22, 2016 / 12:42 pm

    What an amazing place. I do love a good brunch. Urban camping sounds like fun and a bargain way to stay in a beautiful city. #kcacols

    • Tooting Mama
      September 22, 2016 / 1:52 pm

      Thank you! It’s pretty awesome there! Yes the perfect way to see Paris on budget. Thanks for dropping by.

  3. September 21, 2016 / 10:19 pm

    We’ve yet to take the kids camping. They are really excited by the idea. My husband and I? Not so much! How cool you can camp so close to the centre of Paris though?

    Thank you for linking up to #KCACOLS and I hope to see you back again on 1st Oct when the linky opens again x
    Maria recently posted…Piccolo Plates: Children’s Meal Delivery ServiceMy Profile

    • Tooting Mama
      September 22, 2016 / 6:24 am

      I bet the kids are excited about camping – it’s a glorious experience for kids, they just run off and play all day! Hope you manage to go camping and thanks for the note on #KALCOLS.

  4. September 21, 2016 / 9:45 pm

    Paris is up there as one of my favourite cities, I didn’t realise you could camp there though. What a lovely way to stay.
    winnettes recently posted…Disappointing WeekendsMy Profile

    • Tooting Mama
      September 22, 2016 / 6:21 am

      Oh yes camping has come to Paris – great for the early summer, I’d probably book a cabin though, and put the kids to work on the bicycle powered washing machine! Burn some energy!

    • Tooting Mama
      September 22, 2016 / 6:22 am

      I’m with you on the luxury cabins. Actually we’ve camped on the Gower Coast in Wales and it’s gorgeous. Camping is a fab holiday for kids!

  5. September 19, 2016 / 12:35 pm

    Sounds like a really fab space! A great place to take the kids and the urban camping does sound tempting. #citytripping
    Elizabeth (Wander Mum) recently posted…City Tripping #44My Profile

    • Tooting Mama
      September 19, 2016 / 2:31 pm

      It’s a great space…not a bad place to crash down for the night in the centre of Paris! Maybe a cosy cabin rather than a tent. Might leave that to gap year travellers!

    • Tooting Mama
      September 19, 2016 / 9:23 am

      Me too…but the weather has turned, so maybe snuggling down in a nice,cosy cabin! Thanks for stopping by!

    • Tooting Mama
      September 19, 2016 / 9:22 am

      It’s pretty awesome, but I think I’d opt for a cabin and spend my day chilling out in a hammock!

  6. September 18, 2016 / 3:08 pm

    What a unique place with something for everyone. And so much fun to be had on a budget too. #fortheloveofBLOG

    • Tooting Mama
      September 18, 2016 / 5:55 pm

      That’s the perfect word, unique, and yes lots of fun on a budget!

    • Tooting Mama
      September 18, 2016 / 5:54 pm

      Thank you! It’s a pretty cool find.

  7. September 17, 2016 / 6:28 pm

    I’m a terrible camper, but I’d go for one of those luxury cabins! I love the whole setup of this – the workshops to repair small appliances is such a great idea, we throw away so much these days that could so easily be repaired if we knew how to do it! Thanks so much for joining us again at #SharingtheBlogLove
    Katy – Hot Pink Wellingtons recently posted…#SharingtheBlogLove #12My Profile

    • Tooting Mama
      September 17, 2016 / 7:53 pm

      I’m not great at camping, but a good private cabin or a hammock with a starry night view would be awesome. The whole upcyling, recycling ethos of the project is brilliant. Always happy to be part of #sharingtheBloveLove you ladies are awesome!

  8. September 16, 2016 / 8:09 pm

    Oh wow – this is absolutely awesome! I have never been to Paris but would love to. Kaz x

    • Tooting Mama
      September 17, 2016 / 7:55 pm

      Well when you do get to visit Paris – drop me a line, happy to suggest a few placed for you to check out!

    • Tooting Mama
      September 16, 2016 / 1:23 pm

      Paris is a great city and it does have some great projects going, you’ll have to come and visit soon!

  9. September 16, 2016 / 10:00 am

    What an interesting project! That sounds like a great initiative, helping out and supporting lots of people. & I’m not a camping fan, but urban camping does sound a little more me! (Lucy/R is for Hoppit)
    Silly Mummy recently posted…Friday Frolics – 16th September 2016My Profile

    • Tooting Mama
      September 16, 2016 / 1:24 pm

      I’m not the world’s best camper, I think if I had to book a pitch I would opt for one of the cabins, and maybe chill out in hammock!

    • Tooting Mama
      September 16, 2016 / 9:04 am

      It’s pretty cool there, so much to see and do.

    • Tooting Mama
      September 15, 2016 / 10:42 am

      I think you should! There’s more to this city that Disneyland!

  10. September 15, 2016 / 8:28 am

    I never heard of it before but it sounds like a fab idea! Well done for sharing this kind of info! #SharingtheBlogLove

    • Tooting Mama
      September 15, 2016 / 9:02 am

      Thank you! It’s a really cool place, I love the social ethos with the solidarity cafe and social housing as well as supporting local fledgling businesses.

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