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Where to Stay in Trieste for First-time Visitors
May 13, 2024
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Where to Stay in Paris for First-time Visitors + Places to Avoid

paris for solo travelers

Paris, like to many of us, first came to me as an idea. Its images conjured in my head were the ones fed by the literatis who lived in this city, from Victor Hugo to Simone de Beauvoir. Hmm, okay, I majored in literature. Before there is Emily in Paris, there was Amélie. Paris to a budding vagabonding writer like me, at first, was oddly unappealing. It never occurred to me to travel there despite it being near to Munich. I needed a reason to visit. A friend living there and a friend who visited his adapted home for the holidays were enough push to finally book that flight (last minute decision so train was way more expensive) and visit. Having friends who lives in Paris for a while gives me a sort of privileged access to the many wonders of Paris, both the idea and the reality. Wondering where to stay in Paris for first time visitors? Consider this as your rough guide to the best districts in Paris to stay on a budget. With notes from my friends.

The best budget hotel for couples: Montparnasse Daguerre and Hotel Champerret Heliopolis
The best budget design hotel: Zoku Paris
and Hôtel Henriette
The best budget hotel for families or groups: YOOMA Urban Lodge
and Novotel Paris Centre Bercy

In a nutshell: the best places to stay in Paris for first-time visitors

These neighborhoods offer a mix of affordability, local charm, and access to attractions, making them great options for budget-conscious travelers. However, it’s essential to research specific accommodations within each area to ensure they meet your needs and budget.

Belleville: Nearby Attractions: Parc de Belleville, Belleville Market, and Buttes-Chaumont Park.
Pros: Affordable accommodation options, vibrant local atmosphere, great street art scene, diverse dining options, one of the best places to stay in Paris for first timers
Cons: Can be a bit gritty in some areas, less touristy, farther from central attractions.

Montmartre: Nearby Attractions: Sacré-Cœur Basilica, Moulin Rouge, Place du Tertre.
Pros: Historic charm, picturesque streets, artistic atmosphere, relatively affordable accommodation options.
Cons: Can be crowded with tourists, some areas can feel touristy, hilly terrain might be challenging for some travelers.

Latin Quarter (5th arrondissement): Nearby Attractions: Panthéon, Jardin des Plantes, Musée de Cluny.
Pros: Lively atmosphere, lots of budget-friendly eateries and cafes, close to universities and libraries, good public transportation connections, certainly one of the best places to stay in Paris for first time visitors
Cons: Can be noisy, especially at night due to the student population, limited hotel options, some areas can feel crowded.

Le Marais: Nearby Attractions: Place des Vosges, Musée Picasso, Hôtel de Ville.
Pros: Trendy neighborhood with a mix of historic and modern attractions, plenty of budget-friendly dining options, great for shopping, certainly one of the best places to stay in Paris for first-time visitors
Cons: Accommodation options may be slightly pricier compared to other budget areas, can be crowded with tourists during peak seasons.

Canal Saint-Martin: Nearby Attractions: Canal Saint-Martin, Parc des Buttes-Chaumont, Belleville neighborhood.
Pros: Hip and trendy vibe, picturesque canalside walks, budget-friendly cafes and bars, alternative shopping scene
Cons: Limited accommodation options, can be noisy due to nightlife activities, slightly farther from central attractions.

Three neighborhoods in Paris that first-time visitors might want to avoid

Gare du Nord and Châtelet-Les Halles

  • Reason to Avoid: While these areas are major transportation hubs and offer convenient access to trains and metro lines, they can be overwhelming for first-time visitors due to their bustling nature and high concentration of commuters. Additionally, Gare du Nord is known for its higher crime rates, especially pickpocketing, which can be concerning for tourists. Châtelet-Les Halles is also a complex maze of underground passages that can be confusing to navigate, potentially leading to frustration for newcomers.


  • Reason to Avoid: Barbès-Rochechouart, located in the 18th arrondissement, is known for its diverse population and bustling street markets. However, it also has a reputation for higher crime rates and can feel somewhat gritty and unsafe, especially after dark. Tourists might feel uncomfortable or out of place in this area, particularly if they are not familiar with the surroundings or the local culture.


  • Reason to Avoid: Situated in the 19th arrondissement, Stalingrad has undergone some gentrification in recent years but still retains a rough edge. It’s known for its large immigrant population and can feel somewhat isolated from the main tourist areas. While it has its own unique charm and cultural diversity, it may not be the best choice for first-time visitors who are seeking a more typical Parisian experience or who prioritize safety and convenience. Additionally, some parts of Stalingrad can feel rundown and less inviting compared to other neighborhoods.

For first-time visitors to Paris, sticking to more central and tourist-friendly areas can enhance the overall experience and help avoid potential safety concerns or feelings of discomfort.

The Best Places to Stay in Paris: Design Hotels on a Budget

This is my personal bias. As an avid fan of architecture and interior design (watched all Netflix shows on house flipping, tiny house design channels on YouTube, AD, vacation rental designs, and Bobby’s portion on Queer Eye is my fave), design hotels are destinations themselves. Normally, they also cost a fortune. But in Paris there are some design hotels that are still on the budget to midrange, meaning, their daily rate does not go past $200 a night. Here are some of my favourites.

Hôtel Riesner

19 Rue d’Austerlitz, 12th arr., 75012 Paris, France

Looking for a comfortable stay near Gare de Lyon? Look no further than Hôtel Riesner! The family room comfortably fits four people, with a double bed and two singles, ensuring a restful night’s sleep for everyone. Located just a short walk from Gare de Lyon and Accor Arena, it’s the perfect spot for travelers attending events or concerts.

The hotel’s stylish design and clean interiors create a welcoming atmosphere, while the extremely friendly and helpful concierges are always on hand to offer insider tips and recommendations. Plus, it’s pet-friendly, so your furry friends are welcome too!

Hôtel Henriette

9 rue des Gobelins, 13th arr., 75013 Paris, France

Looking for a charming stay in Paris? Look no further than Hôtel Henriette! With its fantastic location and friendly staff, it’s a top choice for your next visit to the city of lights. Mahdi at reception is known for his warmth and accommodation, making you feel right at home.

The rooms are compact yet clean, effective, and comfortable, ensuring a good night’s sleep. Plus, the metro station is just steps away, and the area is quiet yet lively, with delicious dining options nearby like Dame Augustine. With its impeccable design and remarkable staff, Hôtel Henriette offers a memorable and delightful experience for your Parisian adventure.

Zoku Paris

48 Avenue de la Porte de Clichy, 17th arr., 75017 Paris, France

With its meticulously designed rooms and innovative concept, Zoku is a standout choice for travelers seeking something different. The location is perfect, with the metro station just a stone’s throw away. The interior design is both functional and stylish, making you feel right at home.

The loft rooms are clean, comfortable, and equipped with everything you need for a cozy stay. Plus, despite being close to a busy road, the hotel is surprisingly quiet. With comfy beds and a pantry room for extra supplies, Zoku ensures a memorable and enjoyable stay in Paris.

Okko Hotels Paris Gare de l’Est

30A rue d’Alsace, 10th arr., 75010 Paris, France 

Situated in an amazing location, Okko offers beautiful interiors and excellent value for money. The rooms are cozy and comfortable, and the staff are super friendly, making you feel right at home. Plus, Okko’s sustainability efforts set it apart from other hotels.

While the entrance may be a bit unusual to find, once you’re inside, you’ll be delighted by the service and hospitality. Although the surrounding area may seem a bit unsafe at times (the entire Paris feels kinda similar to be honest), the hotel itself is secure and welcoming. Overall, Okko provides a memorable and enjoyable experience for your Parisian adventure.

Hotel Monsieur & Spa

62 Rue Des Mathurins, 8th arr., 75008 Paris, France

With Hotel Monsieur & Spa’s excellent location, just a short walk from iconic attractions like the Louvre and Champs-Élysées, and a metro station nearby, exploring the city couldn’t be easier. You’ll find plenty of dining options within walking distance, and the friendly staff are always ready to offer recommendations.

The rooms are modern, clean, and well-appointed, with thoughtful touches like bathrobes, slippers, and umbrellas provided. Plus, the private sauna and fitness room offer the perfect way to unwind after a day of sightseeing. Hotel Monsieur & Spa truly offers a brilliant stay in Paris.

The Best Hotels in Paris for Couples on a Budget

These best hotels in Paris for couples on a budget range from $150-$200 a night. From charming boutique stays to cozy hideaways, these accommodations, I personally selected, offer the perfect blend of affordability and intimacy, ensuring a memorable and romantic getaway in the City of Love.

Montparnasse Daguerre

94, Rue Daguerre, 14th arr., 75014 Paris, France

where to stay in paris for first time visitors

Experience Montparnasse Daguerre, your perfect budget-friendly retreat in Paris! Located at the top of rue Daguerre, this hotel offers couples a convenient and charming stay. With metro and bus stops just meters away, exploring the city is a breeze. Rue Daguerre itself boasts delightful food shops and bars, perfect for a romantic stroll.

The rooms feature excellent facilities and are both clean and cozy. Enjoy the warmth of the welcoming staff as you make this quaint hotel your base for exploring the city’s wonders. With reasonable prices and a prime location, Montparnasse Daguerre ensures a memorable and affordable Parisian getaway for couples.

Hotel de Flore – Montmartre

where to stay in paris for first time visitors

108 rue Lamarck, 18th arr., 75018 Paris, France

Welcome to Hôtel de Flore Montmartre, your perfect hideaway in the heart of Montmartre! Away from the main hustle and bustle but still just a decent walk from Sacre-Coeur, you’ll find yourself surrounded by plenty of charming shops, including an amazing boulongerie up the street and a convenient supermarket nearby.

Plus, there’s a handy laundromat just across the road. Their friendly staff will greet you warmly and ensure your stay is nothing short of excellent. With clean and spacious rooms featuring fantastic power showers, you’re guaranteed a comfortable stay. And don’t forget, the location offers easy access to the metro and nearby attractions, making exploring Paris a breeze.

Hôtel 29 Lepic

29 Rue Lepic, 18th arr., 75018 Paris, France

where to stay in paris for first time visitors

Hôtel 29 Lepic is your perfect budget-friendly retreat in the heart of Paris! Located just a stone’s throw from the iconic Moulin Rouge, the hotel offers a fantastic experience for couples seeking romance on a budget. Their helpful and courteous staff ensure a warm welcome and impeccable service throughout your stay. With excellent cleaning service and a delicious and varied breakfast, you’ll feel right at home.

Plus, its prime location provides easy access to shops, bars, restaurants, and the nearby Metro station, making exploring Paris a breeze. Immaculately clean rooms, comfy beds, and good showers guarantee a comfortable stay. Whether you’re here for sightseeing, rugby, or simply soaking in the city’s charm, Hôtel 29 Lepic is the ideal choice for your Parisian adventure.

Hôtel des Batignolles

26-28 Rue Des Batignolles, 17th arr., 75017 Paris, France

Welcome to Hôtel des Batignolles, where comfort meets convenience in the heart of Paris! Guests rave about its homely feel, akin to a cozy house rather than a typical hotel room, making it perfect for short or extended stays. Each room is equipped with extra amenities like a radiator, microwave, kettle, and iron, ensuring a hassle-free experience. The rejuvenating shower provides a spa-like effect, while the sumptuous breakfast delights the palate. Enjoy the plush beds, spacious bathrooms, and soundproof windows for a restful night’s sleep.

The attentive staff adds to the pleasant atmosphere, though language barriers can occasionally arise. Nevertheless, Hôtel des Batignolles earns five stars for its stylish rooms, impeccable cleanliness, and overall thoughtful design, making it a standout choice for discerning travelers. Plus, with the Rome metro station nearby and underground parking available, exploring the city couldn’t be easier.

Hotel Champerret Heliopolis

26-28 Rue Des Batignolles, 17th arr., 75017 Paris, France

where to stay in paris for first time visitors

Discover Hotel Champerret Heliopolis, a top pick for a delightful stay in Paris! Nestled in a charming neighborhood within walking distance of the Arc de Triomphe and the iconic Champs-Élysées, this hidden gem offers both convenience and comfort. With a metro stop nearby, exploring the city is a breeze. Plus, parking is free right outside the door, making it a rare find in Paris.

Pet-friendly rooms ensure that furry companions are welcome, while friendly and helpful staff add to the welcoming atmosphere. Despite compact rooms, guests rave about the comfortable beds and overall cleanliness. Whether it’s your first visit or a return trip, Hotel Champerret Heliopolis promises a memorable stay with great value.

Best hotels in Paris to stay with family

Explore the best hotels in Paris for families on a budget! With prices ranging from $150 to $300 per night, these accommodations offer comfort and convenience. Each hotel boasts guest reviews of 8+ and above, ensuring a quality stay for you and your loved ones in the City of Light.

Holiday Inn Express Paris – Canal de la Villette

Best hotels in Paris to stay with family

68, Quai De La Seine, 19th arr., 75019 Paris, France

Located in a quiet residential area along the picturesque canal, Holiday Inn Express Paris – Canal de la Villette offers a serene setting for your city getaway. With friendly and helpful staff like Marc and Albane, you’ll feel right at home. Enjoy the convenience of nearby metro stations and supermarkets, plus the added security of a nearby police station.

While the suite rooms may lack a wardrobe, they make up for it with clean and comfortable accommodations. Whether you’re a runner or just seeking a peaceful stroll along the riverbanks, this hotel’s location is perfect for exploring. Plus, with an English breakfast spread to start your day, it’s the ideal base for your Parisian adventures.

Novotel Paris 20 Belleville

64-74 Boulevard De Belleville, 11th arr., 75020 Paris, France

best places to stay in Paris on a budget

Conveniently located in front of the metro station, the new Novotel Paris 20 Belleville offers well-appointed rooms with comfortable beds and Rituals amenities for that extra touch of luxury. The restaurant serves delicious yet affordable meals, perfect for dinner with the family.

With friendly and attentive staff treating you like royalty, you’ll feel right at home. Plus, the hotel is easy to find, and the rooms are clean with good shower pressure. Don’t miss the breakfast buffet with something for everyone! And if you arrive early, they’ve got luggage storage sorted for you.

Novotel Paris Centre Bercy

best places to stay in Paris on a budget

85 Rue De Bercy, 12th arr., 75012 Paris, France

Looking for a family-friendly stay in Paris? Look no further than Novotel Paris Centre Bercy! With breakfast available from 06:30 to 11:00 on weekends, your family can start the day right. Kids will love the breakfast entertainment, like the magician, while adults appreciate the high-quality meals served in the restaurant.

The spacious rooms comfortably accommodate a family of four, and the friendly staff are always ready to assist. Plus, special surprises like the Sunday balloon event add to the fun. While there were minor cleanliness issues, overall, families enjoy a pleasant and memorable stay at this 4-star hotel.

YOOMA Urban Lodge

51 Quai de Grenelle, 15th arr., 75015 Paris, France

best hotels in Paris to stay with kids!

YOOMA Urban Lodge is one of the best hotels in Paris to stay with kids! With free arcade games and a children’s room, your little ones will be entertained for hours. Despite cozy rooms, the hotel’s cleanliness and kid-friendly facilities stand out.

Plus, the friendly staff and stylish decor make for a comfortable and enjoyable stay. Located just a 15-minute walk from the Eiffel Tower, it’s convenient for sightseeing with the family. Whether it’s exploring Paris or relaxing at the hotel, YOOMA Urban Lodge ensures a memorable experience for families with kids of all ages.

Hôtel des Comédies Paris

where to stay in paris for first time visitors

8 Rue d’Hauteville, 10th arr., 75010 Paris, France

With spacious rooms accommodating two adults and a child, including a king bed and a regular twin bed, everyone will have a comfortable place to rest at Hôtel des Comédies Paris. The hotel also has a gorgeous attic room that can accommodate four. The generous bathroom adds to the convenience.

You’ll appreciate the cleanliness and the warm welcome from the friendly staff. Plus, the central location makes it easy to explore all that Paris has to offer. Even if you arrive early, you can safely leave your luggage and start your Parisian adventure worry-free. With clean rooms, comfortable beds, and a convenient location, Hôtel des Comédies Paris ensures a memorable family stay.

Jona of Backpacking with a Book

Hi there, I’m Jona, originally from Cebu, Philippines, had live in Hanoi, Vietnam, and now currently based in Munich, Germany. This blog used to house thoughts on life and books, but eventually it morphed into a travel blog. For collaborations, projects, and other things, please email me at For essays, creative nonfiction, and others, find me elsewhere.

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