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Friday, 11 October 2013

15. Accommodation in Paris

Well so far I don't seem to be much further advanced in working out my itinerary than I was the last time I did one. (I have the "bones" of where I'll be, but the actual details are still up in the air.) One of the reasons for this is the cost - it's much more expensive than Asia or China and when you're used to accommodation for $30 or less for a room in a guesthouse or small hotel, you're up for $300 for ten nights.

Paris will be the most expensive, not only because it is an expensive city, but most of the hostels I've looked at don't seem to be that good. They're either in dodgey areas and/or have no lift, bad reviews and a long way from the city centre which means instead of being able to walk everywhere, or nearly everywhere, I'll have to take public transport every day and this I would prefer not to do.

Do you know something? I had visions a long time ago of staying in a little apartment somewhere in Montmartre with a little balcony, sitting on it watching the world below while drinking coffee or wine. But Montmartre it seems is a bit of a risky place or so I've been told as it's very near Pigalle, the "red light" district. Someone I know, said she stayed at the Regent Hostel and, in her words, " The biggest problem was the area, in that I didn't feel terribly safe at night which was a shame. There were literally hundreds of north African men standing around in gangs in front of every cafe, on every corner and by all the benches." She also said although they didn't cause her direct problems, it was intimidating even just walking from the metro to the hostel.

Now, I could be wrong, if anyone reading this blog disagrees, please feel free to leave a comment and give your views.

Le Marais
A French chap I know when I asked him where to stay in Paris, said "Le Marais or the Bastille" When I said a friend who had been to Paris this year said the best place to stay was either in the 5th or 6th arrondissement, he told me they are too touristy.

When I mentioned this to my friend, she said she didn't feel safe there, she thought it was dodgy and full of people she didn't like the look of.

Latin Quarter
This is the area where Vee stayed - she said it was the safest part of Paris. From the many hours I've spent, eyes glued to the computer screen, there is a shortage of budget places to stay.

Now this would be a great area in which to stay. Alas, there is a an ever greater shortage of budget accommodation here. I guess this is where the well-heel stay.

If I am to go with a hostel, it looks like either the furthest part of the Latin Quarter or up around Montmartre.
If however, I don't go for a hostel, then it'll be an apartment. From what I've seen on airbnb, there are some apartments for the same price as a small hotel. And if I'm very lucky, I might be able to snag one in the Saint Germaine area. There were only one or two, but who knows, I could be lucky. It all comes down to this -
Do I spend around 220 - 280 euros, about AUD$330 for a dorm bed in a hostel, or do I stay in an apartment/hotel and pay twice the money - $660?

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