Traveling to Paris is a big dream for a lot of people. I acknowledge the fact that I am very lucky to be able to go as often as I do. I have one reader that went to Paris on her honeymoon 20 years ago, and now with kids and a mortgage she is not sure if she will get there again, but she keeps the flame going nonetheless.
I have a couple of other readers that have never been but are savings up to get there and have big plans when they get there as it may be their one and only trip.
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There are also different philosophies when it comes to hotels. Some believe it is an essential part of the entire travel experience while others view it as a place to drop their suitcases and their head at night, as what is outside of the hotel is what makes the trip.
There is a Paris for everyone and a hotel for everyone too. If you are coming to Paris on a budget – and believe me with the continually high exchange rate between the dollar and the Euro who isn't – there is a wonderfully situated hotel called the Hôtel Elysées Flaubert that is the perfect solution.
You can get a perfectly adequate no-frills, a clean room with wifi/internet access, and a continental breakfast. There is a helpful and friendly staff (trust me, not always a given in Paris) that can assist you with your needs.
It is within walking distance to the Arc de Triomphe, Champs Elysées, Place de Ternes, public transport (metro, RER), restaurants, and everything else in Paris.
Speaking of restaurants, food-wise there are great restaurant options for you to enjoy close to Hôtel Elysées Flaubert. I personally like the brasserie Le Congrès Maillot, especially their strawberry millefeuille!
Two other options suggested by Paris by Mouth (17th arrondissement at a €24-30 for the dinner price range) are Zinc Caïus and Le Bouchon et L’Assiette.
If you are going to splurge on dinner, how about a picnic lunch? Check out one of the two market streets open Tuesday through Sunday in the 17th where the Hôtel Elysées Flaubert is located: Rue Lévis – (Metro stop: Villiers) and Ternes-Rue Lemercier – (Metro stop: Brochant).
In addition, here are 5 farmer's markets (marchés) suggested by Clotilde of Chocolate and Zucchini. Buy lunch supplies and head to the beautiful Square des Batignolles park or Parc Monceau which is one of Paris's best-kept secrets..sssh, and have a lovely picnic.
For shopping, you can wander through the luxury stores on the Avenue des Champs-Élysées (in the 8th arrondissement), but for a more budget-friendly store that is a real treat to walk through, check out the Monoprix located at Avenue de Villiers. Wander in and out of smaller clothing stores such as Promod or Camaieu and definitely take a peek into one of the pharmacies they are so much fun to explore!
And when you have exhausted yourself of sights (and sites) and sounds and filled your belly with amazing food, then head back to your affordable room at the Hôtel Elysées Flaubert and lay your head on that nice clean pillow with a smile knowing that you are enjoying Paris and sticking to a budget! It can be done!
Insider tip: ask for a room overlooking an inner courtyard with a small garden, you will feel like you are in a whole other world.
How about you? Do you have a Paris-on-a-budget tip?