Top 5 Places to Stay in Paris + Tips to Explore the City
Boutique Hotel, Hostel, AirBnB… Find the Best Accommodation in Paris!
You’ve just booked your flight to Paris and now you're looking for a place to stay.
However, you’re not sure which option is the best for you or which neighborhood to stay.
It’s not always easy to find the perfect place to stay, especially in a big confusing city like Paris.
But our French U30X staffer, Marion, has the experience and done the research. Here is a list of the best places to stay + tips to make the trip even more magical.
L’Hôtel du Petit Moulin
This out-of-the ordinary boutique hotel is located in the Marais and close to a lot of shopping.
It was originally Paris’s first bakery and the original shop frontage still remains. The interiors were designed by the French fashion designer, Christian Lacroix, and every room is different with a unique atmosphere.
Melissa, one of our travelers during the France trip, stayed at Petit Moulin:
“It's a different place to stay that's not the average hotel! All of the walls are decorated in cool patterns and the furniture is brightly colored and funky shapes. It's close enough to some tourist attractions like Notre Dame and the Seine that you could walk but it's also a little out of the city center so you get a more authentic experience! It's also a small hotel so the people who work there remember who you are when they see you."
The Indigo Hotel Opéra is part of the IHG group so if you have a lot of hotel points, you can stay there for really cheap.
That’s where our U30X Alumni, Nick, decided to stay there to enjoy a few days exploring Paris:
“I thought the location was great - away from the touristy areas but still an easy walk or Uber ride to most places (e.g. took me 20 min to walk to the Louvre). It is also located near a ton of shops and restaurants.”
The Village Hostel
The Village Hostel is located in the very charming and artsy neighborhood of Montmartre--one of my favorite places in Paris!
It is a very lively place where young travelers and backpackers come and stay to enjoy a warm atmosphere and meet others travelers from around the world.
The hostel provides all the services that you need: free wifi, towel rental, hair dryer, laundrymat, fully equipped kitchen, board games and books, bar, live music.
You can choose to stay in a 3 or 4 bed private room if you travel with friends or in mixed dorms. Female travelers also have the option to stay in dorms reserved for women (with a private bath!). And all the rooms are non-smoking rooms!
Generator Hostel Paris
The Generator Hostel is also a good hostel chain that I recommend.
The rooms are modern, comfortable, and some of them even have a private terrace! Prices are still affordable and you can take advantage of all the facilities that are provided by the hostel.
Why not go relax on the rooftop and enjoy the view on Montmartre and Sacré-Coeur?
The Generator Hostel Paris is located near the Canal St Martin, an authentic and quiet area in the heart of Paris!
It is obviously the best option if you want to get a different experience and stay in someone’s home. This can be a great opportunity to meet locals and experience the Parisian life in a nice and comfy apartment or studio in the heart of the city!
I’ve stayed in many Airbnbs in France & in the rest of the world and was never disappointed!
Make sure to read the review, the exact location of the place and the list of amenities to make sure you book the right spot to match your needs.
Tips to Explore Paris
Paris is easy to visit by foot or public transportation. Whether it is by bus, metro, tramway or RER (Parisian train), the city and its surroundings are very well connected.
This means you don't need a car as the public transportation will allow you to visit the main attractions very quickly.
If you want to explore the city without taking the public transportation, that’s possible too!
Pick up a bike “Velib’s” in one of the many spots all around the city. It’s the perfect combination between outdoor exercise and getting to places quickly. The rental process is very flexible as you can drop it off in many other spots without returning to your starting point.
Uber is of course a good option if you want to avoid public transportation and go somewhere in a short distance. Marcel Cab is another private cab platform that you can use; and you can even book a cab in advance! It is also the cheapest that you can find in Paris.
What to Avoid in Paris
Unless you only stay one night in Paris and your flight leaves early the next morning, don’t stay in a hotel near the airport. Both Paris’s airports are pretty far outside the city.
Also, don't stay outside the city center, meaning the "20 arrondissements."
You’ll be too far from the center and some of the suburbs are not very safe. The best neighborhoods in Paris are Marais, Canal St Martin, Montmartre, and the Latin Quarter.
It’s not necessary to stay near the Eiffel Tower. The neighborhoods near the Eiffel Tower are upscale residential areas, which means they are expensive and kind of boring (in my opinion).
Plus, you can see the tower from all over the city. However if you absolutely want to stay close to the Eiffel Tower, the Comtesse Hotel is a very nice spot to stay!
I definitely do not recommend staying in the Champs-Elysees. It is an overcrowded place filled with expensive shops you can find anywhere else. You can go there once if you want and walk to the Arc de Triomphe.
Big thanks to Melissa and Nick for sharing their hotel experience in Paris on this blog post!