The best suburbs to live near Paris


 

As captivating and beautiful as it may be, life in Paris can get busy and expensive. Those looking for a bit of peace and quiet, or more space and a front yard often move to the suburbs, or banlieue. Paris is surrounded by suburbs, most of which have direct transport options to the city via RER or Metro. Some are nice, some can be a little dangerous, so you have to know where to look. I’ve put together a guide of the best suburbs to live near Paris to help you out.

Neuilly-sur-Seine

Photo courtesy of Celetta on Wikimedia Commons

Located on Paris’ western border, Neuilly is just adjacent to the city, and borders the river as well as the Bois de Boulogne. Here you’re just a stone’s throw from the Champs-Elysées but without any of the city hustle ad bustle. This is one of the most affluent Parisian suburbs, and its sister city is Winsdor, England. If that gives any indication.

Neuilly has just over 60,000 residents and is mostly an upscale residential suburb. Here, it’s quite and calm, with lots of green space and slower pace of life – though it’s just minutes from the city!

Its proximity to Paris and La Defense Business District has made Neuilly popular with students and young families, since the rent is slightly lower than Paris proper. Plus it takes just 15 minutes to reach the city center via Metro.

Image sourced from Google Maps

neuilly-sur-seine 92200
distance from city center: 7 kilometers
time to reach city center: 15 minutes
direct transport: metro ligne 1

 

Saint Germain-en-Laye

Saint Germain-en-Laye by Spedona on Wikimedia Commons

Located to the west of Paris, Saint Germain-en-Laye is one of the most charming and upscale Parisian suburbs (though still more affordable than the city). Actually, before the French revolution this was a royal town; home to French and international monarchs.

Home to just over 50,000 inhabitants, this suburb is perfect for those wanting a small town feel near Paris. The town is known for having some of the best schools in the region, so there are quite a few families living here. And at just 40 minutes to the city center via RER, Saint Germain-en-Laye is consistently rated as one of the best suburbs to live near Paris.

The green surroundings and small town commerce here really make Saint Germain-en-Laye feel a lot further than 19 kilometers from the city. The town itself is surrounded by the expansive Saint Germain-en-Laye forest, which covers 48 square kilometers!

 

saint germain-en-laye – 78100
distance from city center: 19.1 kilometers
time to reach city center: 40 minutes
direct transport: rer a

Versailles

Photo by Anthony Choren on Unsplash

Situated to the  Versailles is of course famous for its impressive Château, but did you know it’s also one of the best suburbs to live near Paris? Just half an hour to the city center by car (40 minutes via RER), Versailles makes a nice alternative for those hoping to escape the bustle of Paris, but still be close enough to commute for work or pop into the city for a visit.

The town of Versailles has a population of just over 85,000 people, so it’s still has a small town feel but has all the conveniences of the big city. Oh, and the biggest draw? It’s around half the price of Paris!

Despite the Château de Versailles and its gardens being one of France’s largest tourist attractions, you’ll find the rest of the town itself to be calm and quiet. the architecture is similar to both Paris and the South of France so the town itself is quite picturesque.  And actually Versailles served as the model for several international cities like Washington D.C. and London!

versailles – 78000
distance from city center: 20 kilometers
time to reach city center: 40 minutes
direct transport: rer C

Sèvres

Photo by VVVCFFrance on Wikimedia Commons

Picturesque Sèvres is one of the smaller and lesser known towns on my guide to the best suburbs to live near Paris. Located to the southwest of the city, Sevrès is bordered on three sides by vast national forests and on the fourth side by the Seine. Plus, Sèvres is situated on a hilltop, so you actually have a view of Paris from here, including the Eiffel Tower! And while located just 9 kilometers from the Paris city center, you’ll feel a world away in Sèvres.

Not only is the cost of living significantly lower here than in Paris, but thanks to all the surrounding greenery, the air quality is much better than in the city. This Parisian suburb is popular with young families and sporty types; the local parks are great for running, hiking, and cycling.

There are around 23,000 people living in Sèvres, making it one of the smaller and community-based suburbs to live near Paris. Plus, it’s easy to reach the city from the city. The journey will take you just half an hour via car from Paris center, or 11 minutes from Gare Montparnasse via the N train.

sèvres – 92310
distance from city center: 9 kilometers
time to reach city center: 30 minutes
direct transport: N train

Levallois-Perret

By FFFL on Wikimedia Commons

One of the more upscale of my best suburbs to live near Paris, Levallois is home to lots of Parisian luxury and high end PR companies. Situated 6 kilometers to the northwest of Paris, many of the town’s 64,000 residents commute work in Paris or in the local offices. Since it’s so close to Paris, Levallois is a convenient option for those looking to save a little cash or simply enjoy a quieter way of life.

And despite being just 6 kilometers from Paris center, walking around Levallois feels like cruising the streets of a small town in France. You have houses with yards framed by trees, small streets, and just an overall feeling of being in the countryside.

It’s easy to travel between Levallois and Paris, and the journey can take as little as 20 minutes via the Metro line 3 or the L Train. Driving to Paris is a quick jaunt too, and should take 30 minutes or less if you avoid rush hour.

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levallois-perret – 92300
distance from city center: 6 kilometers
time to reach city center: 30 minutes
direct transport: metro line 3 or L train