Safety in Paris – Do/ Don’t and Where to stay?
This article is to give you an overview on safety in Paris with also a few tips on how to avoid pickpockets or the best places to stay in Paris. It is based on researches done by L’observatoire national de la délinquance for example and on our own experience at Feel Parisien. For us Paris is safe, as we never had one single problem. But we know tourists don’t see the city with our eyes and are often robbed.
SafeAround state that Paris is a very safe city with a safety index of 68% “Although the police force is highly effective in making Paris a safe place, tourists may nevertheless be a target for pickpockets and crooks on the city’s streets.” You can wander in almost every district with a very low risk of mugging if you take precautions as explained below in this article. However, some areas are safer than others.
Let’s take a look at a few neighbourhood in Particular, where is it safe to stay in Paris?
The center of Paris and mains area including the touristy one’s (Le Marais, the Latin quarter, the Louvre area….) are very safe, as it’s a vibrant area either at day or night.
Les Halles is a huge meeting place with metro and RER connecting from a lot of places. Therefore, it can be a bit crowded during the day and might be a place for pickpockets to take advantage of tourists. It can be a bit scary at night as it’s a spot for drug dealers to exchange but it’s getting better and more surveillance by police. Beware of large teenager’s groups during the weekends; they are often gangs from the suburbs who come to Paris looking for trouble.
Montmartre is a safe neighbourhood. Down the hill it’s Pigalle which is the equivalent of the Red-Light district, but as it is very touristy during day and night you should not have any problems. Don’t stay too long on the boulevard because the downside of being very touristy and lively is that there can be large groups of people drunks and some deal of drugs as well… (be especially cautious if you are a female).
The North of Paris is controverted. It’s not safe in every street and you should be careful Around both Gare du Nord and Gare de l’Est, you should always keep an eye on your wallet. If you want to explore La Goutte d’Or, which is a quite poor district, you should go there only during the daytime. For example, you would find some cheaper apartments around Chateau Rouge, the main boulevard is safe but I would not rent apartments in Rue doudeauville and la goutte d’or as a Woman.
Belleville and Menilmontant, both African and North-African areas, have become safer places these last 5 years. They are popular among young “bourgeois-bohèmes” (also know as “bobos”) who have settled here to escape the high rents of other funky areas like Bastille.
Bastille is so vibrant with its many cafés and bars that you may encounter drunk people at night with extravagant behaviour but nothing especially dangerous.
The Champs-Elysées is very lively and not too risky, at least during the day. You should still be careful on this large avenue, especially at night because it’s so crowded that it is the perfect place for pickpockets. Also, because most of the Parisian night clubs are in this area, you can might encounter drunk people or gangs of young people who just want to cause trouble. You can have a safe walk on the Champs Elysées but not after midnight.
The western part of the city (17th, 8th and 16th arrondissements) is quite wealthy, it’s mostly residential, there are not a lot of restaurants, bars or animation and that’s why it can get pretty empty when the night comes and become a bit scary but it’s mostly a very safe neighborood.
On the other side of the Seine, the 13th district, Montparnasse, the 6th, 7th and other districts from the south of Paris are all secured areas to visit.
What neighbourhood to avoid in Paris at night? What about night time Safety?
Some district and metro stop are less welcoming by night and you should be more carefull when travelling alone after dark from 10:30pm : Chatelet les Halles, Les Halles, Pigalle, Couronnes, Belleville, Place des Fetes, Porte de St Ouen, Porte de Clichy, Gare du Nord, Stalingrad, Jaures, Porte de la Chapelle, Porte de Clignancourt, Porte de la Villette, Aubervilliers-Quatre Chemins. These stations are not dangerous or no go-zone but you would want to take extra care by not travelling alone as a woman for example in the night time.