Where to stay in Paris
Paris is a big city, let's not pretend otherwise. However, it does have a first class and very affordable transport system which means that wherever you choose to stay within the city, you will find it relatively straightforward to get to where you need to go. As with any big city, there are of course good and bad areas to stay both in terms of the relative safety of the neighbourhood and what you can see in that area.
Prices for accommodation in Paris will generally be far higher in the traditional "centre" of the city and will reduce as you radiate out from there. In terms of choices of accommodation, the centre is most often home to the large hotel chains although there are some great little places that can be found in the city centre if you are prepared to look.
The city itself is divided up into districts called "arrondissements" which are administrative regions. The fifth and sixth arrondissements are home to the Latin Quarter which tends to be one of the more affordable areas to stay in the city centre. It is home to many students and the area generally attracts a younger crowd as it has a reputation for excellent nightlife.
The area of Montaparnasse and Alesia, which form the sixth and fourteenth arrondissemnts respectively, are still very central but are much quieter than the Latin Quarter in terms of nightlife. This is a relatively quiet area but one that is still very close to the centre and easily accessible to the main tourist sites that you may want to visit. Montmartre and the eighteenth arrondissement offer a more "village" type feel for your stay as the area is located on the top of the Montmartre hill. The area is picturesque with small, narrow streets and offers great views of the city due to its elevation. The area is trendy and has an "arty" feel to it and is definitely one to consider if you are looking for a more relaxed and bohemian atmosphere.
If you are looking to stay in style and amongst the hoi-polloi, the eighth arrondissement around the Champs Elysées is the place to head for. The area is home to many of the large hotel chains which are popular week in week out throughout the year. Here you will experience the glamour and romance of Paris but rest assured you will pay heftily for the privilege!