Best Areas to Stay in Paris
Of course, Paris is huge and there are so many possible places to stay. The following are some of the most popular areas with good atmosphere (in my view), good location (close to tourist attractions, restaurants, good metro access), high concentration of hotels, and (some of them) with reasonable room rates:
Sacre Coeur – Montmartre (18th arrondissement)
One of my favourite places. Northern part of Paris inner city, close to Gare du Nord. Many streets feel very fresh and green (in spring/summer). The natural centre of this area is the iconic Sacre-Coeur Basilica on the top of the Montmartre hill (make sure to go to the top, because there is beautiful view of Paris from there). Compared to some other popular areas in Paris, it is possible to find cheaper places to stay and cheaper restaurants in this area. One downside (on a lighter note): It is not walking distance from the Eiffel Tower for most people, but in Paris you can never stay within walking distance from everything. Pigalle Station (near Sacre Coeur) is 6 metro stops from Place de la Concorde and 8 stops from the Eiffel Tower.
Tour Eiffel – Invalides and Champs Elysees (7th + 8th arrondissement)
The top place to stay in Paris for many people, because it is the very centre, surrounded by the most famous landmarks including the Eiffel Tower, Champs Elysees, Place de la Concorde, or Arc de Triomphe. Also very close to Louvre and Notre Dame. Everything you imagine when you say Paris, you find in this area: theatres, museums, shops, restaurants. Downsides: Prices in most hotels reflect the prime location and some of the streets can be rather busy.
Another nearby location, similar in character, is the 1st arrondissement, Louvre – Chatelet:
Pantheon and Saint Germain (5th + 6th arrondissement)
The area south of the Seine River behind Notre Dame. Good atmosphere of the old traditional Paris. There are lots of colleges and educational institutions in this area, including the most famous one, Sorbonne. Another dominant feature of this part of Paris is the large Luxembourg Garden, another favourite place of mine. The location is close enough to walk to Louvre, Concorde, and the other top landmarks, but quiet enough. I can’t think of any downsides now (sure there are some).