We are planning on renting an apartment in paris and are looking at options from Vacation in Paris Site. All of the Rick Steve's recommended Rue Cler are taken and Vacations in Paris recommends nice apartments in the Marais area and in District 2 several blocks behind the Lourve. Has anyone had experience staying in these areas? Which would you recommend if either?
I stayed in an apartment in the Marais district last summer and just loved the location. It was convenient to most of the popular sights and it's a lively, safe neighborhood.
Larry my picks would be 4th( Marais) 5th( Latin Quarter ) 6th ( St Germain). The second is fine too, I would choose it over the 7th anyways .
I totally agree with Pat. The 7th is okay, but IMO it's overrated by Rick.
I totally agree with Pat as well.
Just to pile on to the other replies. Rick's love of the Rue Cler area mystifies most of the rest of us. It's a nice market street - and there are lots of these throughout Paris. Except for the Eiffel Tower, it's not really close to most other tourist attractions. I'm not saying one shouldn't stay there, but it certainly wouldn't be my first choice. So, don't worry if you can't stay there. Along with most others, I like the 4th, 5th or 6th, and the 2nd would also be fine. Do realize that, while the 2nd is small, the others have varied areas, so you can't assume they are homogeneous. For instance, the Latin Quarter is only part of the 5th.
I have been to Paris several times, always staying in the Rue Cler area because I like it there. After reading all of these posts, I will have to check out another neighborhood next time to see what I have been missing.
The first year we rented a studio called Scaramouche from this company on rue Marie Stuart. The Rue Montorguiel is like Rue Cler, only better. It is totally French. This year we are renting a one bedroom on rue Tiquetonne, which is one block away. We had culture shock when we moved to our Rue Cler area hotel. Souvenir shops all over and tourists everywhere. We were about a 20 minute walk to either the Louvre or the Marais. We did walk it for the first three days. Finally we started using the metro. Those marble museum floors are hard on your feet. Look at the size of the apartment. They are very small. And the pictures are accurate. I know lots of people think highly of the Marais. We plan on doing more there this trip.
Stayed in the Marais. It is very young and hip. Crowded during the day and a bit loud on weekend nights till the wee hours of the morning. If you appreciate trendy and lots of action it is the place to be. The market in Rue Cler is everything you picture when you think of France (or at least to me). It isn't very central to the rest of the city but if you want to connect with other Americans sharing your experience it offers that comfort zone. You will surely appreciate the influence Rick Steves has had on travelers. For my next visit I will heed the advice of the more experienced travelers on this site. While I do like feeling as if I am on a big tour with the rest of the folks carrying blue books, I'll look for someplace other than the Rue Cler.
The Marais is great because you're walking distance to a lot of great sights and just good strolling, and there's plenty of metro stops to take you further. I've never had a chance to stay there because of budget/availability, but I'm hoping to in the future. I've been to Paris 5 times now and every time I find myself wishing I'd stayed in the Marais. Parts of it are quite bustling, but there's still quieter streets to be found. The area behind Place Du Vosage (spelling?) is a lot quieter than say, the area near Pompidou center. Another neighborhood I would consider is over by the Palais du Luxembourg. Also convenient and nice (and like the Marais, well priced compared to the Latin Quarter but in good proximity to it)
My last Paris trip this past Septemeber, I stayed in the Marais in a apartment, only way to go. I also love the 1st and 2nd. I had never been to the 7th until this last trip and like the others, just don't understand why Rick loves it so much? It is lovely, but far from everything except the ET! Happy Travels!
We like the 5th area, near the Luxenbourg gardens and the Pantheon. we have enjoyed nice markets near our hotel (St. Christophe) and the market down the hill towards Notre Dame and the river which was closer to our previous hotel of St. Jacques. This is also a nice area with lots of different resturants because of the students at the Sorbonne. The resturants are not terribly expensive. I am not sure if we have even been to the Rue Cler area. Does this mean I will be banned from this site?
Have no fear, Bev, people here accept all points of view, even affection for rue Cler. We've never stayed there but have had several glasses of wine and enjoyed the scene and the wine. But it's not, imho, any better than various other market streets like rue Mouffetard, rue Daguerre, rue Levis, and others around the city. We've stayed in the Latin Quarter (hotel) and Montparnasse (apartment), liked both, will be in the Marais this fall. Larry, if your choices on Vacations in Paris are too constrained, you could try homeaway.com, vrbo.com, and others. Generally speaking, the farther you are from the river the less you will pay, or the bigger a place you'll get for a given cost. The metro makes it so easy to get around that you don't have to be right in the heart of things.
Larry, I've rented two different apartments from VIP in the Marais (#115 and #201). I'm renting #115 again in May. Feel free to PM me if either of these are among your choices and you want more info. I like the Marais, but there are many great areas.