Neighborhoods to Avoid in Paris: A Comprehensive Guide for Safe Travel (2023)

Paris, the capital city of France, is a popular tourist destination known for its rich history, stunning architecture, and vibrant culture. While Paris is generally a safe city for tourists, it is important to be aware of certain neighborhoods that may have higher crime rates or safety concerns. In this guide, we will provide you with detailed information about the neighborhoods to avoid in Paris, both in the city center and on the outskirts, to help you make informed decisions and ensure a safe stay in the City of Light.

Understanding Safety in Paris

Before we delve into the specific neighborhoods, it is essential to understand the overall safety situation in Paris. While some rankings may label Paris as a dangerous city, it is important to note that these rankings often consider the ratio of the number of inhabitants to the number of crimes and misdemeanors. In reality, safety in Paris is comparable to other European and American capitals.

According to the latest crime indices, Paris ranks in the average range among French cities. It is worth mentioning that these rankings are based on the opinions and feelings of internet users and do not necessarily reflect official figures or statistics .

Safety for Tourists in Paris

For tourists visiting Paris, the city is generally safe, with the exception of pickpocketing, which is a common issue in many tourist destinations worldwide. In the beautiful neighborhoods in the center of Paris and at popular tourist sites, tourists are not in immediate danger. However, it is important to remain vigilant and take precautions to avoid becoming a victim of pickpocketing.

Organized networks of pickpockets, particularly targeting Chinese tourists, operate in Paris. These networks often target individuals carrying large amounts of cash and high-limit bank cards. While the municipality of Paris is working to address this issue, it is advisable to be cautious and keep personal belongings secure .

It is important to note that violent crimes in Paris primarily involve settling scores between rival gangs and crimes related to drug trafficking. These incidents are not widespread throughout the city but are concentrated in certain suburban areas and specific districts. Tourists are generally not directly affected by these types of crimes.

Neighborhoods to Avoid in Central Paris

While the majority of central Paris is safe for tourists and residents during the day, there are a few areas where it is advisable to exercise caution, particularly in the evening. Here are some neighborhoods to avoid in the center of Paris:

  1. Red Light District: The district of Pigalle, located in the 9th arrondissement, is known for its adult entertainment establishments. While it attracts a population seeking lively nightlife, it is recommended to avoid walking in this area at night, especially if you are traveling with children .

  2. 19th Arrondissement: The 19th arrondissement is considered one of the most sensitive and least safe areas in central Paris. It has a high delinquency rate, organized drug trafficking networks, and a relatively high crime rate. Specific neighborhoods to avoid in the 19th arrondissement include Place Stalingrad, Place des Fêtes, Cambrai, Mouzaia, Danube, Jaurès, Ourcq, Cite Cambrai, Curial, the Chaufourniers (red city), the White city, and Riquet-Stalingrad.

  3. 18th Arrondissement: While the 18th arrondissement is popular among tourists due to the charming neighborhood of Montmartre, there are certain neighborhoods within this arrondissement that are less attractive in terms of safety. Areas to be cautious of in the 18th arrondissement include Goutte-d'Or, La Chapelle, Château-Rouge, Barbès, Pigalle, Porte de Clignancourt, and the vicinity of the Saint-Ouen flea market.

  4. 10th Arrondissement: The 10th arrondissement is generally not considered dangerous, but the northern part of the borough, particularly around Gare du Nord, has been associated with drug addiction and incidents of assault, fights, and theft. It is advisable to exercise caution in this area .

Most Dangerous Neighborhoods on the Outskirts of Paris

Outside the city center, mainly in the northern part of Paris, there are several neighborhoods that are considered the most dangerous. These neighborhoods are often concentrated in the 93rd department. Here are some of the neighborhoods to be cautious of:

  1. Saint Denis
  2. Saint-Ouen
  3. Argenteuil
  4. Bondy
  5. Epinay-sur-Seine
  6. Sarcelles
  7. Villiers-le-Bel
  8. Stains
  9. Aulnay sous Bois
  10. Clichy sous Bois
  11. Sevran
  12. Montfermeil

Choosing a Safe District to Stay in Paris

When selecting a district to stay in Paris, it is important to consider safety along with other factors such as proximity to attractions, amenities, and personal preferences. The most beautiful districts of Paris are often located in and around the Golden Triangle, which is delimited by the avenues Montaigne, Champs-Élysées, and George V.

For those seeking accommodation in a building with character and a typically Parisian refined decor, we recommend considering hotels in these desirable districts. Additionally, for budget-conscious travelers looking for affordable accommodation in safe areas close to tourist sites, there are several budget hotels available .

In conclusion, while Paris is generally a safe city for tourists, it is important to be aware of certain neighborhoods that may have higher crime rates or safety concerns. By avoiding the mentioned neighborhoods and taking basic precautions against pickpocketing, tourists can enjoy their visit to Paris and experience the city's rich cultural heritage and charm.

Note: The information provided in this article is based on research from various sources and is intended to serve as a guide. It is always advisable to stay updated with the latest travel advisories and consult reliable sources for the most accurate and up-to-date information regarding safety in Paris.


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