Choosing where to stay in Paris can be difficult. For the first time visitor, it can be overwhelming.
Where to Stay in Paris
Updated for 2019!
Dave and I first visited Paris in 1998 and instantly fell in love with the city. We have returned again and again and each time we discover something different.
We have also stayed in several different neighborhoods and researched where to stay when in Paris and the best things to do in Paris.
A couple of years ago, we were sent on assignment to break down the best arrondissement in Paris (Paris neighborhoods) so we know the city well and can give personal recommendations on the best area to stay in Paris from our own experiences.
This guide also tells you what to do in each arrondissement, how to get there, and suggested tours.
Best Areas to Stay in Paris
If you want to skip directly to any of the neighborhoods in Paris, click on the links below.
there are some affiliate links in the post below where theplanetd will earn a commission if you make a purchase but there is no extra cost to you!
The Best Places to Stay in Paris
- The Louvre - 1st Arrondissement - the business district with luxury hotels and trendy boutiques
- Le Marais - 4th Arrondissement - Known for its narrow streets and lively nightlife
- The Latin Quarter - 5th Arrondissement - The student center offering a central location and affordable accommodation
- Saint-Germain-des-Prés - 6th Arrondissement - neighborhood vibe with chic cafes and galleries.
- Eiffel Tower - 7th Arrondissement - Stay in the heart of all the action.
- Champs-Élysées - 8th Arrondissement - an upscale neighborhood with luxury accommodation
- Montmartre - 18th Arrondissement - affordable location with a neighborhood feel and excellent views
- Montparnasse - 14 Arrondissement - experience the real Paris as the locals do
- Plan Your Paris Trip- Tips and resources to plan your trip.
- Paris Tips- Tips that will make your trip to Paris more comfortable and exciting.
Other categories in this Paris Guide
Best Neighborhoods in Paris
There are 20 Arrondissements in the city.
We're not going to cover all 20, but we have rounded up what we feel are the top 8 best districts to stay in Paris.
We consider Montmartre the best neighborhood to stay in Paris, but you may have something different in mind.
A lot of people think that 7th Arrondissement is the best place to stay in Paris for first-timers because it is close to the Eiffel Tower.
It is overwhelming trying to decide, but we've made it easy for you.
So we made sure to break all the best locations to stay in Paris and tell you what is in each one and why you will want to stay there.
Even though Paris is big, it's a largely walkable city and this guide should take the difficulty out of deciding on the best area in Paris to stay to suit your needs.
We're here to help you choose the best neighborhood to suit your budget and to help you break down some accommodation and Paris attraction ideas for you too.
Best Time to Visit Paris
High season for traveling to Paris is June to August. Summertime in Paris is a dream.
The weather is warm and sunny, but it is also high season so you will have crowds and higher prices at hotels.
September/October are still great times to visit Paris. The weather is good and the prices are a bit lower as it is getting into shoulder season.
We've also visited Paris in Spring and it is cheaper to visit Paris at this time, but you also will have rain.
But the people of Paris are used to carrying umbrellas. So buy a chic umbrella don a raincoat and enjoy Paris in the Springtime.
Find out how cheap you can fly to Paris below!
Paris Arrondissement Map
Paris has 20 Arrondissements but you'll find that even if we suggest staying in the 1st Arrondissement, the 2nd might be a good option too.
Don't limit yourself.
As you can see from the map below, neighborhoods circle in a clockwise direction with the lower numbered arrondissements being closer to the Seine.
Choosing where to stay in Paris is easy once you get the hang of how the city works.
back to top - return to the top of the page for the full list of the best arrondissements to stay in Paris
Our #1 Money Saving Tip in Paris
Read our Paris tips:
The best way that you can save money and seeing all of the sites is to get yourself a Paris Pass.
You can get it for 2-6 days and it includes all the below and more:
- Free entry to more than 60 top attractions
- Free travel on the metro
- A 1-day hop-on, hop-off bus tour ticket
- A guidebook in 6 languages
- Skip-the-line entrance to many of the sights, like Centre Pompidou, Arc de Triomphe, Louvre Museum, and more.
- Bateaux Parisiens River Cruise
- Wine Tasting - O Chateau
No matter how long you spend in Paris the Paris Pass will save you money and time. Definitely worth it.
#1 Eiffel Tower - 7th Arrondissement
The Major Attractions
This neighborhood is popular for first-time visitors to Paris.
If you are looking for a place to stay in Paris that is in the heart of all the major "wow" attractions the 7th arrondissement is the place for you.
The 7th Arrondissement is the best place to stay in Pariss close to everything
It is centrally located on the left bank of the River Seine.
In this neighborhood of Paris, you are going to find the Eiffel Tower, Les Invalides - home to Napoleon's Tomb, Musée d'Orsay, Musée Rodin, and the Musée du Quai Branly.
Lines can be very long at the Eiffel Tower. Book in advance for skip the line tickets and save yourself from waiting hours in line on the day. You can also find other options for tours around the eiffel tower here
This has been home to the aristocrats and upper class of Paris for three centuries.
For first time visitors to Paris, this is a great choice as you won't have to go far to see any of the iconic landmarks.
Suggested Hotels Near Eiffel Tower
Things to see near Eiffel Tower - the 7th Arrondissement
Eiffel Tower - A visit to Paris wouldn't be complete without seeing the Eiffel Tower and if you seeing it for the first time, this could be the place for you to stay in Paris.
Les Invalides - Napoleon's tomb is located in Les Invalides and it's an interesting tour through the military history of France.
Musee d'Orsay - This museum is a dream for those who love Impressionism. With Monet, Degas, Cezanne, Van Gogh, Surat, Manet and Gauguin hanging from its walls, it houses the largest collection of impressionist art in the world.
Champs de Mars - You know that giant green space you see from every aerial view of Paris? This is it. Champs de Mars offers beautiful views of the Eiffel Tower and is a perfect spot for a Parisian picnic.
Eiffel Tower and Seine Cruises combo - allowing you to skip the line and go right up to the second platform of the tower before heading on a 1-hour river cruise.
Paris 1,2, or 3-Day Hop on Hop off Bus Pass - If you are in Paris for more than one day, this is a great option for getting around to all the sites. Plus you get a book of discounts.
We used the Paris City Pass for our first visit to Paris - If you want to combine a metro pass with attractions, museums, and front of the line, get a Paris City Pass for $160.
It saves time and offers valuable discounts. Plus the Hop on Hop Off Bus!
Eiffel Tower - stop at Bir-Hakeim station along line 6
Les Invalides - stop at Invalides station on line 8 & 13
RER-C - stops at Les Invalides , Champ de Mars-Tour Eiffel and Musee D'Orsay
Batobus the hop on hop off service along the tourist sites on the Seine has stops at Tour Eiffel and the Musee d'Orsay..
The Paris Pass gives you unlimited travel on metro, bus and trains as well as skip the line tickets to the Eiffel Tower and entrance to 60 museums, sights, and attractions.
#2 Le Marais - 4th Arrondissement
This area of Paris is known for its narrow streets and Ile de la Cité where Notre Dame stands.
It is a big district of Paris with many things to see and do.
Pre French Revolution Feel
After the revolution, Napoleon III (descendant of Napoleon I) widened all of the streets to stop people from making barricades.
That's the reason most of Paris has wide large boulevards today.
In Le Marais, you'll find many pre-revolutionary buildings and narrow streets from Medieval Paris.
It's had a cool vibe ever since.
Today Le Marais is the premiere LBGTQ district of Paris where you'll find a vibrant nightlife scene, situated beside boutique shopping and gourmet chocolatiers.
It may look and feel like old Paris, but the area is definitely contemporary, most notably the Centre George Pompidou.
The Pompidou Centre spans, several blocks showing the latest in contemporary art.
But what Le Marais is most known for is the famous Notre Dame Cathedral on Ile de la Cité.
Notre Dame Cathedral
One cannot go to Paris without exploring the famous gothic cathedral and the rest of the 4th Arrondissement.
It's easy to explore Notre Dame for free on your own.
If you. want a guided tour and to skip the line to the towers Get Your Guide is a great choice.
Or check out more tours here.
This district of Paris is expensive and very busy, but if you are wanting to stay in one of the best neighborhoods in Paris to feel like a local, this is it.
Sip coffee in designer cafés and basque in boutique hotels this is where you will feel like you are truly at the heart of local living.
Suggested Hotels Le Marais
Things to See in Le Marais - 4th Arrondisement
Île de la Cité - Home to the world's most famous medieval Catholic cathedral, Notre Dame. It's free to visit but if you want to go up to the bell tower there is a charge.
Île Saint-Louis - is the other natural island of the city and a quiet escape filled with cafes and shops.
Jewish Quarter - Along rue des Rosiers you'll will find the city's oldest and most famous Jewish settlement dating back to the 13th century. Today you'll see many Jewish synagogues, restaurants, bookshops and eateries.
Hôtel de Ville is home to the city's administration buildings. This has been the location of city hall since 1357 but the building we see today date back to 1628.
Place des Vosges is one of the oldest squares in Paris
Pompidou Centre - is a modern building housing the Museum of Modern Art, Paris Public Library and the Institute for Research and Coordination in Acoustics/Music.
Metro stop for Le Marais: St. Paul
The Paris Pass gives you unlimited travel on metro, bus, and trains as well as skip the line tickets to the Eiffel Tower and entrance to 60 museums, sights, and attractions.
#3 Champs-Élysées - 8th Arrondissement
Luxury and Shopping
If you are looking for where to stay in Paris when focusing on shopping this is it. This is the posh area of Paris and it is where you'll have quick access to the Champs-Élysées.
The 8th arrondissement is located on the Right bank of the River Seine.
A day can be spent walking along this street, peeking into boutiques, dining on fine French cuisine and even catching the latest Hollywood movie.
A walk up the Arc de Triomphe will give you a bird’s eye view of all the streets in Paris leading away from this downtown core. We recommend going at night.
The 8th arrondissement centers around the Opera, but really, if you are staying here, it’s all about the high-end shopping, fine dining, and extravagant living.
It’s home to the most famous street in the world. That street is the Champs-Élysées. This is a street that stretches from the Place de la Concorde to the Arc de Triomphe.
Suggested Hotels Near Champs-Elysees
Things to see near Champs Elysees - the 8th Arrondissement
The Opera - Founded in 1669 by Louis XIV this beautiful opera house can be toured privately, with a guide or you can still see a live production today.
Champs-Élysées - the most famous street in the world is beautiful and a perfect spot to spend the day shopping, people watching and walking from the Place de la Concorde to the Arc de Triomphe.
Place de la Concorde - square where the likes of Marie Antoinette and King Louis the XVI were executed. Today it houses Paris’ Luxor obelisk and one of the most expensive hotels in the city
Grand Palais - It's name says it all. Grand Palais is a grand exhibition hall hosting major art exhibits each year.
Arc de Triomphe - This imposing monument honours those who fought in the French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars
Tomb of the Unknown Soldier - Located under the Arc de Triomphe, the tomb of the unknown soldier lays to rest as the eternal flame burns over his grave.
Paris Opera - Take a 90 minute guided tour of the Opera Garnier.
If you're going to the Louvre on regular hours, book in advance at skip the line for a reasonable self guided tour.
If you want to visit unlimited museums at anytime, the Paris Museum Pass is an excellent deal for 2,4, or 6 days starting at $77 USD.
Arc de Triomphe Skip the Line - Get front of the line access to the Arc de Triomphe rooftop for a panoramic view of Paris.
Paris Vintage Citroen Tour - We did this tour of Paris and it was a wonderful way to explore the city in the backseat of a classic car.
Getting to the 8th Arrondissement
Most lines go to the 8th Arrondissment.
Look for stops along the Champs-Elysees, Conforde, Madeleine.
#4 Montmartre - 18th Arrondissement
Montmartre is the 18th arrondissement.
This is our favorite neighborhood to stay. If you want an affordable place to stay in Paris this is it.
If you are looking for a local vibe, this artisan district is right up your alley.
Staying in Montmartre is really all about going local.
When staying in this neighborhood of Paris, you'll want to relax in a cafe and watch the talented street performers entertain.
Here you can take in a traditional cabaret and try to find the only vineyard in Paris still in operation.
It’s filled with great things to see like the Basilica of Sacre Couer standing high on a hill overlooking the city.
This is where you will find one of the best overhead views of Paris and it doesn’t cost you a penny.
The artist district is a great choice for a walk. Here you will find the former studios of Dali and Picasso and you may also see the house of Renoir.
Like the Cimetiere Pere Lachaise, you can stroll through the Cimetière de Montmartre for free you will see where many famous artists have their final resting place.
Montmartre is filled with cafés and shops and is also home to one of the three remaining windmills in Paris.
Suggested Hotels in Montmartre
Things to See in Montmartre - 18th Arrondissement
Sacre Couer - It has one of the best views of the city. Sacre Coeur Basilica is a Roman Catholic church located on the highest point of Paris. You can visit the Basilica for free from 6 am to 10 pm. If you want to visit the tower there is a charge.
Carousel and Funicular - The Funicular is included in your Metro Pass. When you arrive at Sacre Couer, you can take the funicular instead of walking up the steps. There are many carousels scattered throughout Paris and this one offers beautiful photo opportunities.
Views of Paris - Pack a bottle of wine (be discreet) and a picnic to enjoy on the steps while you take in the best view of Paris for free!
Moulin Rouge - the famous Moulin Rouge is located in Montmartre. Take in a show or tour the theatre.
Montmartre Museum and Dali Museum - Montmartre has several museums most notably the Dali Museum located where Dali used to live.
Vineyards - You'll find the oldest vineyard in Paris in Montmartre. How cool is it to see grape vines growing in the middle of the city?
Windmills - Paris used to be scattered with windmills. Today there are few left but you will find them in Montmartre.
Suggested Tours with Get Your Guide
Moulin Rouge with Champagne - watch the world famous cabaret as you sip on a half bottle of champagne per person.
Montmartre Guided Tour - Join a local guide will weaving through the streets of Montmartre. Highlights include Place du Tertre, Place du Calvaire, the Montmartre vineyard and the windmills of Montmartre.
Moulin Rouge with Dinner - Take a guided city tour at night and end with at the Moulin Rouge where you'll travel by luxury coach and toast your champagne while watching the famous can-can.
Paris Eiffel Tower Dinner, Seine Cruise and Moulin Rouge - The Ultimate Paris City Tour starts with a 3-course dinner at Altitude 58 in the Eiffel Tower, then a tour down the River Seine before ending the evening at the Moulin Rouge to watch the world-famous Can Can dancers as you sip champagne.
The Paris Metro stations for Montmartre are
Abbesses – Line 12 (green)
Anvers – Line 2 (blue) will take you to the foot of Sacré Coeur. You can walk up the stairs, take in the view of Paris or if you want, you can take the Funicular de Montmartre to the top as the fee is included in the Paris Metro ticket.
Lamarck Caulaincourt – Line 12 (green)
Blanche station (line 2) -coming out of Blanche (line 2 Porte Dauphine-Nation), you will see the Moulin Rouge
We also took a stroll one day from Montmartre to the Seine. It's less than an hour's in the most direct route, but we suggest walking east from Montmartre to the Canal Saint Martin and walking along the water for a little bit for a true feel of local living.
Paris also has a comprehensive bus line and you can take buses 30 - 31 - 80 - 85 to the Anvers Sacré-Coeur.
#5 The Latin Quarter - 5th Arrondissement
The Student Centre
This is definitely a popular tourist and student area when choosing where to stay in Paris. It has been the student hangout for 800 years.
Here you'll find a lot of budget and moderately priced accommodation.
The latin quarter is home to the menu formule. If you stroll the streets you'll find a lot of budget food choices.
You'll also get your kitschy tourist items in this area and plenty of cheap drinks. The charm of this area is just getting lost in the streets.
Suggested Hotels Latin Quarter
Things to see in The Latin Quarter - 5th Arrondissement
The Latin Quarter has the benefit of being an excellent central location. Filled with history and the distinction of being the intellectual center of the city.
The Pantheon is the most imposing landmark of the Latin Quarter modeled after the ancient temples of Greece.
The Eglise Saint-Séverin Saint-Nicolas is a wonderful Gothic gem of Paris.
Get lost in the streets as you browse shops, cafés, art cinema houses, vintage shops, and bookstores.
Visit the Luxembourg Gardens and Cluny’s medieval gardens.
Place St. Michel's baroque fountain of St. Michel killing a demon is a popular meeting spot and many free walking tours leave from here.
Take line for to Métro Saint-Michel
Line 10 to Cluny-La Sorbonne, or Maubert-Mutualité
Line B of the RER to: Luxembourg station
Other stops in Latin Quarter - Métro Cluny-La Sorbonne, Saint-Michel, or Odéon station
The Paris Pass gives you unlimited travel on metro, bus and trains as well as skip the line tickets to the Eiffel Tower and entrance to 60 museums, sights, and attractions.
#6 The Louvre - 1st Arrondissement
The Business District
Located on the Right Bank of the River Seine this is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Paris.
It's primarily a business district and the smallest by area in the city.
The west end is where you'll have the very upscale hotels reaching out to the Place de la Concorde.
The center has the Louvre, Famous Ponte Neuf and gardens while the East reaches out to touch on the Ile de la Cite.
Suggested Hotels for Louvre
Things to See near the Louvre - 1st Arrondissement
The Louvre - This is the star attraction of the 1st Arrondissement and you can spend days at the Louvre. The outdoor gardens are a must. Walk from the Lourvre to the Place de la Concorde through the Jardin des Tuileries and marvel at the outdoor statues, gardens and fountains.
Rue de Rivoli - shop in the elegant boutiques and trendy cafés along this street.
Ponte Neuf Bridge - it's the oldest bridge in Paris and our favorite in the city. Take a walk along this centuries old bridge linking the Right and Left Banks through the Ile de la Cite.
Pedestrian Streets - The area around Les Halls and the River Seine is home t many pedestrian streets
Les Halles - Go shopping at Paris' premiere underground shopping center. This was formerly the Paris food market, now it's a place to shop and see a movie.
Jardin du Palais Royal - Palais Royal is home to the ministry of culture but you can visit its gardens and surrounding boutique shops
Louvre Museum Evening and Charcuterie Board - Take an exclusive evening tour of the Louvre free from crowds. The guided tour will take you through the highlights and end at a famous wine bar.
Louvre Skip the Line & Private Tour - Lines can be long at the Louvre and it's difficult to find the art you are looking for, so skip the line and follow a knowledgeable guide to the best sites the Louvre has to offer.
Mona Lisa Best of the Louvre - Just want to see the best and most famous sites. This guided tour will take you to the iconic masterpieces of the Louvre.
Heart of Paris Cycling Tour - A three-hour cycling tour takes you through the highlights of Paris along the Seine river to Notre Dame Cathedral and Palais-Royal.
Coco Chanel's Paris - Meet at the chick Rue de Rivoli to explore Chanel's favorite haunts. Walk in her footsteps to see her first boutique, choice restaurants, and her home.
#7 Saint-Germain-des-Prés - 6th Arrondissement
Galleries, nightclubs, restaurants...this neighborhood has it.
But be prepared it's an upmarket atmosphere.
This area houses the Jardins Luxembourg where we have always suggested is the perfect spot for a picnic.
For that classic Parisian neighborhood feel this is the place. Here you'll spend your days sitting in the city's most trendy cafés lining Saint Germain.
It's a very artsy district in Paris with the school of fine arts and many galleries and museums.
Suggested Hotels Saint-Germain-des-Prés
Things to See in Saint-Germain-des-Prés - 6th Arrondissement
Located not far from the Latin Quarter, St. Germain is another area that is more known for its cafés and shops rather than iconic Paris landmarks.
Many of the sights are similar to what you will see in the Latin Quarter with the Odeon, Eglise Saint Sulpice and Luxembourg Gardens.
Chocolate Tour - Saint-Germain-des-Prés is a premier fashion and food district. You'll find lots of sweets here so take a chocolate tour to taste chocolates, pastry, and bread created by foodie artisans.
Sidecar Motorcycle Tour - You are staying in a vintage area, so take a vintage tour on a motorcycle through the coolest neighborhoods of Paris including the cafés of Saint-Germain.
Historic Paris Half Day Tour - Transportation through Paris in a luxury air-conditioned coach and boat ride through the most historic parts of Paris including the Marais District and Latin Quarter and Saint-Germain-des-Prés.
#8 Monteparnasse - 14th Arrondissement
Modern Life in Paris
Montparnasse was the first place we ever stayed in Paris.
We booked a cheap room at an Ibis Hotel and had three glorious days in Paris. We loved our time in the city and found this to be an excellent area to stay.
It's not too far from anything and easy to get around.
We just hopped on the metro each day and made our way to the Paris attractions.
I get the feeling this is where the residents of Paris live. It feels like a modern liveable part of the city.
If you want the best neighborhood in Paris to feel like a modern-day local, this is the spot.
Suggested Hotels Monteparnasse
Things to do in Montparnasse - 14th Arrondissement
Catacombs of Paris - The underground labyrinth of bones is one of the most fascinating tours in Paris.
The Panoramic Observation Floor of Montparnasse - This offers some of the best views of Paris, without the crowds of the Eiffel Tower. It gave us our first view of the Eiffel Tower and Paris skyline and we can attest, it does offer excellent views.
Le Bar Américain on the 56th floor - Have a drink in style after taking in the views of Paris
Paris Observatory - Dating all the way back to 1667! It's under renovation right now, but who knows, by the time you visit Paris, it might be open again.
Follow in the footsteps of Picasso, Hemingway, and Modigliani as you relax in the art deco cafes.
I imagine this is the spot where Owen Wilson walked the streets of Paris during Midnight in Paris.
After all, it is the district where Jean-Paul Sartre discussed existentialism.
Sadly most of the cool cafes and artist studios were demolished in the 1960s to make way for the train station and the eyesore known as Tour Montparnasse.
But it still has that real life vibe.
Catacombs Priority 2-Hour Tour - A guided two-hour tour of the Catacombs including front of the line access. Learn all about its history with your English Speaking guide.
Montparnasse Terrace Access - Skip the line for the best view of Paris and the Eiffel tower
Paris to Vesailles Helicopter - Take a 25 minute helicopter tour to marvel at Paris and out to the Palace of Versailles. Enjoy drinks at Saint-Cyr l’Ecole and then fly back to the city to enjoy birds eye views of the Seine to see the Trocadero, Montparnasse Tower, and Eiffel Tower.
Take lines 4, 6, 12 and 13 arrive and depart from level -2 at Montparnasse Station.
The Air France coach leaves from from Charles De Galle Airport to Montparnasse. www.lescarsairfrance.com/
For the Catacombs
Metro Stop - Denfert Rochereau. Catacombs are right across the street
Bus # 38 and #68
Paris Quick Tips
The city is easy to get around so don't stress too much about choosing a hotel near your favourite monument or museum.
The Metro is affordable and easy to navigate. When you arrive in Paris, you can easily pick up a pass and travel is easy.
A five day pass in zones 1-3 is only €37,50.
- If you want to travel further, you can get a pass for zones 1 to 5: travels in Paris, the suburbs Orly/CDG airports, Disneyland and Versailles start at €24.50 for a one day pass.You can pre-order your tickets online and have them delivered to your home as well.
- Depending on which zones you select, Paris Transport allows you to travel on: metro lines, RER lines (RATP and SNCF), Ile-de-France bus lines (RATP and OPTILE), except those circulating on Jetbus, Allobus Roissy CDG, tourist excursion and Air France networks, Tramway lines and the Montmartre funicular.
Plan Your Paris Trip
Dress in layers and pack mix and match clothing. Paris can be hot and sunny or cool and damp. Bring waterproof outer layers and a sweater or wrap for evenings.
See our free things to do in Paris for budget ideas.
How to pack for a European vacation - We give our best tips for packing for Europe from what to bring and how to pack it. With video too!
Eagle Creek Plug Adapter - This all in one adapter is all your need for Paris and other European and world travels.
Paris is on the Euro - $1USD = .85 Euro - For up to date conversions get the XE Currency Converter App
So there you have it. Our choices on where to stay in Paris. Do you have any suggestions?
Leave them in the comments below. Our readers would love to have as many ideas and reasons for choosing as they can.
Have you chosen the best area to stay in Paris for you?
Let us know where you end up and how you liked it!
If you enjoyed this article about Paris Neighborhoods, give it a Pin to save to Pinterest.
Disclosure: There are some affiliate links in the post above, but these are all products we highly recommend. We won’t put anything on this page that we haven’t verified and/or personally used.