Note : In April 2016, the French Parlement passed a law allowing for punters to be fined up to 1 500 euros for paying a sex worker. It is very hard to tell how this is working in practice. For example, there has been long-term 'problems' in Belleville in Paris - theoretically the women there should now be exempt from the attentions of the police, but that does not appear to be happening. See the article under 'Paris' for more information about Belleville and the boulevard de Strasbourg. The law and police attitudes are mentioned in an article under 'Lille'. And a recent report in a local newspaper there claimed that there had only been 3 prosecutions in Alsace in the past year.


Place Pierre Semard


This is an article giving some brief information about the situation in Avignon.


Avenue President Wilson


Quartier de la gare Saint Jean : Belcier, quai de paludate

Quartier Saint-Rémi : rue du pont de la mousque, rue courbin

Les quinconces

Passage Birly, rue de Ruat : massages

Rue du Pont de la Mousque

More information here


Cours Montalivet, Caen The traditional area of place Saint Saveur appears to have been displaced to other areas, and French workers appear to have been largely displaced by foreign workers.

Africans formerly used to work from vans on cours Montalivet, but have now moved across the river to the Presqu'île de Caen (see image). According to the press, the workers feel safe here : "Nous avons de bons rapports avec la police et nous nous sentons en sécurité ici. Notre transfert s'est déroulé sans problème / We have a good rapport with the police and we feel secure here. Our transfer went through without problems".

Among the relevant streets are cours Caffarelli, quai de Normandie, rue Gaston Lamy.

Otherwise : Romanians on quai de Juillet and la promenade de Madame de Sévigné, the banks of the River Orne in general, or quai Hamelin.

Earlier they talked of 'torpedo-prostitutes' who lived in Paris and travelled up to Caen for the day. Apparently more women are now actually resident in the area.


La croisettte

Le Havre

Rue LaSueur, Le Havre

Small and cheap but not of a particularly 'high standard' as such.

The center of gravity seems to have shifted recently. Previously it was concentrated on the rue LeSueur, adjacent to place Danton with one or two women on the rue Laperouse. With the demolition of the prison, the trade on the rue LaSueur appears to have finished, and recent renovations on rue Haudry appears to have done the same there. Thus leaving the rue Laperouse adjacent to the bar on the corner, with maybe just one 'frangine'.

It is also quite strange in not 'opening' until about 1400 and seeming to close down around 1800. There appears to be no activity during the night at all.

The view shows rue Laperouse where the 'center of activity' is close to the bar shown on the corner.

Photos (1)

Photos (2)


Quartier Peuple Belge (place de Gand, rue de Courtrai, place aux Bleuets)

Enquête : la prostitution dans le Vieux-Lille by France3Nord-Pas-de-Calais

Prostitution dans le Vieux-Lille : le ras-le... by TNTWeo

•  La Madeleine, just to the north of Vieux-Lille

•  Prostitutes quitting the streets of Lille


The area around the Champ de Juillet, opposite the railway station. In 2014, the mayor and council attempted to halt the trade in this are, but that was officially annulled at the end of 2016, after a legal challenge.

Prostitution in Limoges


near gare de Perrache (image from Wikipedia)

river "quais" (Rhone and Saône), quai Perrache, quai Jules Courmont .

Occupation of Saint-Nizier Church by the Prostitutes of Lyon, events of 1975


Quartier du Val Fourré


Red Light Districts of Marseille


Boulevard de Strasbourg

The avenue de Toulouse appears to be a more shady district, inhabited by clandestine immigrant sex workers (and possibly subject to common police checks).


Eue de la source


Rue Paul Bellamy

Quai de la Fosse

Rue de Strasbourg

Rue de Talensac


Promenade des Anglais

Rue de France


rue St Denis, Arc de Triomphe The rue St Denis is possibly the best known area - roughly speaking that section between rue Reaumur and boulevard Saint Denis (the latter marked by a prominent arch). This area includes the side streets of rue Blondel and rue de Ponceau. Rue Blondel appears to have recently 'changed' its character a bit - for example, there is a launderette halfway along the street.

Despite the new law, there now (the beginning of 2018) appears to be as many women here as before. And what's more, they make no attempt to speak with passers-by, just as though this new law had never been introduced.

On the boulevard St Denis, between rue St Denis and boulevard de Sebastopol, there are often a large number of (mainly) Chinese women. In the past, you might have been expected to take a metro ride out as far as Charonne or similar, but nowadays I think there is a good chance that they usually have a room within walking distance

Latest (but possibly inaccurate) news on this topic:

Chinese Prostitutes of Strasbourg - St. Denis and Belleville

There are often one or two women further down rue St Denis between rue Réaumur and rue Turbigo (adjacent to the passage de Cerfs particularly).

In the past there were often a few older women right at the bottom of the rue St. Denis, around the rue des Lombards (but this might no longer be the case).

Many sex shops were formerly to be found in the 'middle' section of rue St Denis, i.e. south of the rue Reaumur. This trade has declined but now there is there the Love Hotel where 'exotic' rooms can be rented by the hour. The Sexodrome in Pigalle sells itself as officially the largest sex shop in the world. (One sex shop does still exists at the top of the rue St. Denis (just down from the arch), and there a few around the gare du Nord).

'Aux Belles Poules', rue Blondel 32, is a former brothel that has retained its interior (consequently it has had a preservation order slapped on it). It is due to be preserved and be opened for viewing.

If you are interested in a short history of the rue St Denis area, go here.

How to Get There : Metro Stations Strasbourg-St Denis (the arch end) or Sebastopol Reaumur (the rue Reaumur end)

The 'unofficial' district around Belleville (an obvious Chinese district) appears to still exist, and the new law has probably given it a 'boost'. The number of women definitely seems to imply that the new law is not being applied.

The area lies adjacent to the Belleville metro station and north along Boulevard de la Villette and Rue Civiale. Sometimes outside the L'Espace Belleville de la CFDT (building of the CFDT), on the eastern side of the Boulevard de la Villette and in the open space behind this building.

Moulin Rouge, Pigalle The Pigalle area is known for the Moulin Rouge (see image) and its past, although today it is probably very tame in comparison. However there is an interesting Museum of Eroticism (now closed unfortunately)

The rue de Budapest close to gare St. Lazare, appears to have ceased its activities.

The bois de Boulogne and porte de Vincennes are well-known areas for working from vans.

Photographs of Paris

Photos of Paris - 2

Vintage Erotica Depicts Parisian Sex Workers In The 1930s

Brothels of Old Paris

Brothels of the Belle Epoque


Rue St Jacques, in the evening. Possibly spreading into the boulevard des Belges

•  Further details here

• Photos


Avenue de la Forêt-Noire

Route du Rhin

Quai des Alpes

Quai Louis-Pasteur

Boulevard de Lyon Quartier de la Gare


Rue Bayard

Quartier du Canal

Boulevard de Strasbourg


Red Light area of Troyes boulevard Gambetta, rue Argence, rue Paul Dubois

• More information

La Jonquera (Espana)

Paradise, Le Jonquera

Town on the French border

Le Paradise

two other brothels under same ownership at at Melianta, near Banyoles (south of Figueres) and at Mont-Ras near Palafrugell on the Costa Brava.

In 'Le Paradise', each client has to buy an obligatory drink (alcoholic 12€ , soft 10€ ) and has to pay 5€ for a disposable sheet, a condom, a lubricant and a towel.

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