How safe is around Moulin Rouge ?

Jan 9th, 2008, 03:38 PM
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How safe is around Moulin Rouge ?

My dear daughter will be traveling to Paris next summer to study French an vacation France. Would you Fodorites recommend an apartment in Rue Fontaine near Moulin Rouge ?

Thanks for sharing your knowledge !

jmgocan is offline  
Jan 9th, 2008, 04:28 PM
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Where is her school?

hopscotch is offline  
Jan 9th, 2008, 04:37 PM
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Her school is near Arc de Triomphe, between avenue Hoche and avenue Friedland. There´s a metro stop near the apartment (blanche) to take metro line 2 which gets to the Charles de Gaulle-Étoile stop.
jmgocan is offline  
Jan 9th, 2008, 06:23 PM
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From what I recall, rue Fontaine is mostly an historic street with shops and hotels. The Moulin Rouge is on a main drag with a lot of sleaze (sex shops, etc) but it's active and busy with tourists in one way or another most of the time.
elaine is online now  
Jan 9th, 2008, 06:32 PM
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The area is safe - in terms of violent crime = but quite tacky and unpleasant. NOt a place I would ever stay voluntarily.
nytraveler is offline  
Jan 9th, 2008, 06:35 PM
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The Moulin Rouge is at the base of Montmartre.I walked down the steep market street to the corner where the MR sits from Montmartre...I was quite surprised as I was expecting some sleazy boulevard from what I had heard...

It was maybe not as swanky as the 7th but very nice. I shopped at the grocery store across the street in the basement and there were many well dressed Parisian women..

.I didn't see any sex shops but then I wasn't looking either.I loved the area..
hypatia is offline  
Jan 9th, 2008, 08:27 PM
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From MR you needed to continue east along the boulevard (Boulevard de Clichy). Within about two blocks you hit "it."
MrNuke is offline  
Jan 9th, 2008, 08:34 PM
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Where I was walking on Boulevard de Clichy from Moulin Rouge to Montmartre, one can not *avoid* seeing the tacky seedy sex shops. They are everywhere.

Maybe my friends took me on that route specifically because that's what they wanted to see, but if you are on the particular stretch of road, you can't miss them.
cheryllj is offline  
Jan 9th, 2008, 10:10 PM
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Nothing wrong with the area, and metro line 2 is quite convenient. No one is obliged to visit the sex shops.
kerouac is offline  
Jan 9th, 2008, 10:43 PM
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I used to live very near there. It's as safe as most other areas in Paris that I can think of. Always lots of people around, which I prefer to deserted streets. And a stone's throw from the rue des Abbesses and rue Lepic, which are great for food shopping and have some very nice cafés and bars.
hanl is offline  
Jan 9th, 2008, 11:29 PM
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It's as safe as any fake "red light district" in any large city set up to fleece the tourists.
brotherleelove2004 is offline  
Jan 10th, 2008, 04:28 AM
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I think it's a safe area, but NOT pleasant. I took my 18 year old sister in law to see the Moulin Rouge and I thought she was going to die of embarrassment. It was my first time visiting that area as well. It was worse than I expected. I thought because it was a touristy area it would be more fun or tongue in cheek, more novelty than anything. I was wrong. I also thought it would be more discreet, like in the states. Again, I was wrong. It was very in your face! I believe that the "sleazey" area can be avoided but it seems like there are much more pleasant areas of Paris in which to live.
BKP is offline  
Jan 10th, 2008, 05:08 AM
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I wasn't going to offer an opinion on this because my knowledge of the area is not great. But I think I know as much as some other people who are tendering opinions.

First, one needs to understand cities. You can live near a dodgy area and be safe and untroubled. A young woman can even live in a dodgy area and be safe (less sure about untroubled). There can be invisible borders in cities. Yes, the Boulevard de Clichy is a bit seedy, but rue Fontaine is not, especially as you move further away from the Boulevard de Clichy end.

Second, a lot depends on the individual. Is she reasonably streetwise? People who are not attuned to the ways of cities can wander into places where it is better not to be. That applies to Paris generally, not just rue Fontaine.

A young French female student that I know lived for two years in that neighbourhood with no trouble other than the noise of traffic.
Padraig is offline  
Jan 10th, 2008, 05:26 AM
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I think the area around Pigalle is safe but as mentioned already it is pretty dodgy. There are sex shops, peep shows etc. Here is my Paris trip report with pictures and links:

Gard - trip reports and pictures
gard is offline  
Jan 10th, 2008, 05:42 AM
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Rather safe, but tacky or dodgy. It depends maybe on your daughter. Is she rather 'zen' or an anxious, easy frightened person? Can she 'go her way'?
baldrick is offline  
Jan 10th, 2008, 05:58 AM
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While the sex shops, cinemas etc. are certainly there, it is pretty easy to avoid them if you want to.

As others have said, they are really only located on Boulevard de Clichy, which is not where the apartment would be located. And to be honest, when you live around there, it's not long before you hardly even notice the XXX shops any more.
It's easy to cross place Blanche and pretty much ignore them, and if you are walking down Boulevard de Clichy towards Pigalle then there is a wide pavement in the middle of the road between the two lanes of traffic, so you don't even have to walk right past them.
hanl is offline  
Jan 10th, 2008, 06:02 AM
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Figure it isn't the peep shows and the sex shops that are the "dodgy"'s some of the people who happen to go there....and the reason they are going there is because they probably wouldn't have any real interest in your daughter anyway.

Frankly, I think the whole thing about the place being a danger zone has been somewhat overhyped..often by the same so-called "expert" Paris posters who tell you they wouldn't waste their money on "that kind of show" at the Moulin Rouge and have never even seen it.

The area is certainly not the "prettified" Paris we often hear about here but it IS Paris and i think kerouac, who lives there, has given you the best advice.

Let her GO, Mom....she'll be fine like it or not.
Dukey is offline  
Jan 10th, 2008, 06:14 AM
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It's funny what you say Dukey, because when I lived near there I used to joke that it was the safest part of Paris for women - it was about the one place I could walk around on my own without getting any hassle or unwanted comments from men (due to their attention being diverted)!!
hanl is offline  
Jan 10th, 2008, 07:17 AM
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A couple years ago I lived in an apartment on rue Houdon, half a block north of the Pigalle metro stop. I lived there for three weeks. Yes the two or three block strip between Pigalle and the Moulin Rouge does have it's share of sex shops but after a while you just ignor them. The one thing I did not like was the people who approached me trying to get me into their shops. I found a way to avoid this was to walk in the center of the boulevard and not on the sidewalks in front of the stores.

There were a couple good sized supermarkets near by and I felt safe when I was on the street. I also felt the metro connections were good.

I think she will be OK.
Randy is offline  
Jan 10th, 2008, 07:50 AM
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Men get bothered a lot more than women in that section -- all of the sex shops and peep shows try to drag them in if they are alone and look even remotely like a tourist or out-of-towner.

It is much less of a 'problem' for women.
kerouac is offline  

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