Nantes red light district - Which neighborhoods should you avoid?

Because you don't want to stay in a red-light district of Nantes, you want to identify the neighborhoods to avoid and the best places in the city?

It may be surprising to speak of insecurity in Nantes because it is not a big city like Paris, Marseille or Toulouse… But the figures would show that it is a city where violence is progressing more and more (see these articles from Figaro, or France 3 Regions).

This is what I discovered myself when I programmed a sightseeing tour in Nantes. As I usually do, I explored the different neighborhoods to avoid choosing my hotel in a red-light district of Nantes.

Here is the most relevant information that I have summarized below with the map of the districts of Nantes.

Please note that the information I am communicating to you below is factual and in no way reflects judgments or discrimination.

Hot districts of Nantes - Which districts to avoid

Nantes the most dangerous city in France?

YES this was the case in 2021 but according to the latest ranking of the most criminal cities in France, it is no longer so in 2023. Indeed, on these statistics, Nantes appears in 2023 as the 2nd most dangerous city in France after Marseille.

Nantes dangerous city painting
Screenshot of the table and map published on the website

But beware, this type of ranking is only based on the statements of Internet users. It does not include any official statistics.

Is Nantes a dangerous city in 2023?

So is Nantes really dangerous in 2023? If we compare with Italian, American or South American cities, Nantes has a fairly high crime index. This is confirmed by the world rankings Numbeo of the most criminal cities in the world.

Indeed, on this ranking Nantes is ranked 80ème most criminal city in the world out of the 459 cities in the table. In fact according to in 2023, Nantes would be more dangerous than Naples, Las Vegas ou Medellin en Colombia !

You have been warned! because this ranking is based solely on the opinions and feelings of Internet users who rank cities according to a crime index from 0 to 100. It does not take into account any statistics or official figures.

Is Nantes dangerous for tourists?

NO but we must remain vigilant and avoid some districts of Nantes.

Indeed, as in the majority of tourist cities throughout France or in the world (Barcelona, New York, London, Athens, Panama City or even Orleans), there are places where tourists are more prone to theft and scams. But this does not mean that Nantes is dangerous for tourists.

Concretely, visitors have no fear of going during the day to the tourist sites of the historic center or to the island of Nantes. Of course, as everywhere, you will have to be careful, especially with regard to pickpockets.

On the other hand, tourists should also choose the location of their hotel carefully, avoiding certain hot spots in Nantes (see list below and recommendations).

Nantes neighborhood map

This map will allow you to geolocate the main districts of Nantes and those to avoid listed below.

Neighborhoods to avoid Nantes

If, 4 or 5 years ago, the city of Nantes was a quiet and peaceful city during the day, things have unfortunately changed. Indeed, in some places in the city, there are many incidents of theft, drug trafficking and settling of accounts.

Here is a non-exhaustive list of sensitive districts of Nantes (click on the links to geolocate them on Google Maps):

Dangerous neighborhood in Nantes – Malakoff

Malakoff is a city located in the heart of the city of Nantes. It is a district with many faces, with an ideal location near the center, between the Loire Valley and the Erdre Valley, close to the Museum of Arts, the Jardin des Plantes and the train station. Schools, gymnasium, shops... This city has just benefited from an urban renewal plan.

But insecurity is still very present and growing there (see article from France 3 regions: Malakoff district shootings). In fact, this district classified in priority security zone was the subject in 2017 of a deployment of the daily security police within the framework of the republican reconquest of the districts.


Neighborhoods to avoid Nantes - Le Breil

Located in the north of the city, Le Breil is one of the most sensitive in Nantes: Drug trafficking, fights, assaults, shootings… See the article in Ouest France: In Breil, this violence that plagues the neighborhood

Neighborhoods to avoid Nantes - Bellevue

To the west of the Nantes conurbation, the Bellevue district concentrates social housing in housing estates where apartment blocks are the only decorations…

Since 2012, the district has been classified as a priority and has recently been the subject of an increase in the number of national police.


Sensitive district of Nantes – Dervallières – Zola

This district Dervallieres-Zola is however well placed (near the city center and the Procé park). But it is considered by residents to be dangerous (see thearticle by France Bleue or Ouest France).

Sensitive DISTRICT les dervallières NANTES

Sensitive neighborhoods of Nantes – Northern neighborhoods

Neighborhood Nantes North is one of the eleven districts of Nantes which is located, as its name indicates, to the north of the city. Despite many assets (Petit Port racecourse, Pierre-Quinon stadium, swimming pool, banks of the Erdre, 5-star campsite, university campus, etc.), it is a sensitive area that is best avoided.

Dangerous neighborhoods in the city center of Nantes

If the hyper center is "secure" during the day, there are some places where it is better not to go for a drink in the evening or to walk there in the middle of the night.

Indeed, according to the web press, criminals meet there at night to deal, to tamper, to steal or to clash between rival gangs.

Here are the dangerous areas in the city center of Nantes to avoid in the evening or at night:

  • Certain streets of the Bouffay district
  • Shipyard
  • Vincent Gache
  • Banana shed
  • Wattignies Square
  • Around St Jacques hospital
  • Square Admiral Halgand
  • Around Place René Bouhier

Red light districts in Nantes

Among the neighborhoods to avoid at night in Nantes, we should also mention the red light districts:

  • The Quai de la Fosse (which is changing)
  • Rue des Trois Matelots
  • Place Wattignies
  • Bellamy and Schuman boulevards
  • Gloriette and Baco avenues

Best neighborhoods in Nantes

Whether you are a student, on a business trip, on a tourist trip or looking for an apartment to live there, it is recommended that you choose your accommodation in one of the best areas of Nantes.

The districts of the hypercentre of Nantes are the most sought after and the most expensive. Indeed, there are the splendid buildings of the 18th century (former Ile Feydeau), elegant buildings on Place Royale and around the Graslin theater, bourgeois streets around the cathedral ...

Real estate agents have defined a Golden Triangle between Place Mellinet, Place Canclaux and Parc de Procé + Le Guist'heau. It is a quiet area, without insecurity, where you can find the most beautiful private mansions in Nantes.

Where to choose your hotel in Nantes?

The districts of the very center of Nantes are the most beautiful, the safest and the best located for tourism: private mansions, buildings of character, banks of the Loire… It is therefore in these districts that it will be best choose your hotel for a tourist stay.

Here is my recommendation (magnificent hotel in a chic and safe area of ​​Nantes for 107 € per night):


On vacation in Nantes? here are some visit advice or my itinerary to visit Nantes on foot.

5 thoughts on “Nantes red-light district – Which neighborhoods to avoid?”

  1. Ping: Neighborhoods of Nice to avoid - The worst and best neighborhoods to stay + map

  2. Ping: London neighborhoods to avoid - London neighborhood tips and map

  3. Ping: Rome neighborhoods to avoid - Ranking and map of Rome neighborhoods

  4. I arrived in Nantes a few months ago and I'm trying to settle there (find a job + permanent accommodation, one not without the other) so I have already done a few AirBNBs, sub-loc and roommate throughout the city and I unfortunately have to confirm, with regret, your article.

    I thought that the people who warned me about the insecurity in Nantes had a little exaggerated, but it is not.

    I had to go visit a roommate in Rue d'Agen, Bellevue district, and well I never succeeded, I was taken to task, provoked and intimidated then * accompanied * by a group of 6-7 young people who did not want clearly not of my presence in the neighborhood.
    Experience more or less similar to Malakoff one MORNING!
    And shot with a glance while crossing the northern districts by bike.

    In short, we must remain vigilant.

  5. Ping: Visit Nantes in 1 day - My tourist trail on foot with route map

Leave comments

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Back to top