Yvelines (78): Living in the Chic Suburb West of Paris

Bilingual schools, triangle d'or and more, welcome to the Paris west suburb of Yvelines! A favorite for expats moving to Paris and Ile de France.
Yvelines (78): Living in the Chic Suburb West of Paris
(As an Amazon affiliate, we may earn commissions for certain purchases. Please note, all information is provided for entertainment purposes only. See our disclosure policy for details.)

Editor’s note: If you haven’t read the first of this series, Paris and its suburbs, head over there now. We’ll go through the criteria that we selected to compare, what benchmarks we’re using, and a note of caution about how to interpret the results. You won’t want to miss it!

So you want to stay on the west side of Paris, but you want a house! And you perhaps want to send your kid that very famous public International school in Saint-Germain-en-Laye with its multitude of foreign language section. Welcome to the Yvelines!

The former domaine of kings, the Yvelines is littered with royal chateaux, from the Palace of Versailles, to Saint Germain en Laye, Maison Lafitte, and Rambouillet. This is where the elite used to live. And today, it is still one of the more expensive suburbs around Paris.

But hold on a minute before you back your bags, the Yvelines consists of over 258 little towns, so you have to narrow it down a bit. As they say in the real estate business, it is all about location: where you want to commute to, what school you want your kids to go to, and what lifestyle you enjoy.

My recommendation, to narrow things down, is to see if you need public transit access, and then based on that focus on the towns that have RER, Transillien, and Tramway links. Also, not all the towns have collèges (middle schools). Children are supposed to go to the neighboring town, so this would be another way to narrow things down, if you do not care to put your 10-year-old on a bus.

I have also outlined on the map below (in yellow), the area within the Yvelines, that is known as the Triangle d’Or. The area is marked by the communes of Saint-Germain-en-Laye, Versailles, and Saint-Nom-la-Bretèche. These are quite wealthy neighborhoods in the Yvelines and house prices here are comparatively high.

the Best suburbs in this area

Overall the percentage of housing in Yvelines, compared to apartments, is around 55% per Insee. Some of these towns have very charming centre-villes, and certainly have more of a village feel than suburbs in Hauts-de-Seine, for example. Since they are further away from Paris, people tend to visit more restaurants and entertainments in their own neighborhood, rather than trek into Paris.

Two of the communes the most popular with expats are Maison Lafitte and Saint-Germain en Laye (both on RER A). Both have good bilingual schools. Saint-Germain en Laye is the more vibrant of two with a proper city center. Here bilingual sections are offered for American English, British English, Dutch, Japanese and many more. Maison Lafitte, on the other hand, is a sleepier small town and very well known for its horse-riding culture.

If you are looking for public bilingual schools La Celle Saint Cloud is also a good choice. Many of these schools also have bus services, so you should also consider the towns nearby, such as Le Vesinet and Le Pecq.

The town of Versailles, as constructed by the Sun King Louis XIV and Marie-Antoinette, is also a very popular choice. It is directly linked to Paris on RER line C.

Anyway, there are over 258 little towns in the Yvelines, so we are concentrating on the 50 biggest ones which are the most populous and most popular.

☞ READ MORE: Demystifying the French Education System

Zoom in below to see towns and their closest public transit options. Note: the Map is best viewed on computer and large tablet.

The large and most popular suburbs for families have been highlighted below.

NOTES:
All information has been provided for entertainment purposes only, and we are not responsible for verifying the accuracy of the figures noted below. Caution: Use at own risk !

1. Brevet scores will vary from classroom to classroom and school to school, and year to year. Calulation is a “rough average” of Public school data, which is subject to interpretation and changes over time.

2. Population Data is from Insee Public Statistics and is subject to change.

3. Metro, RER and other public transport links are based on current state of public transportion (Oct 2019), and not future plans that under construction.

4. Greenery distinctions include “Fleurie” designation by the “Site officiel du Label Villes et Villages Fleuris” and is subject to personal interpretation.

Achères

  • Postal code: 78260
  • Population (rounded): 20900
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 31 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 80 %
  • Average family size: 2.5
  • RER: A
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 89 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Andrésy

  • Postal code: 78570
  • Population (rounded): 13000
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 46 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 88 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 80 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Aubergenville

  • Postal code: 78410
  • Population (rounded): 11700
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 38 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 87 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 93 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Bois-d’Arcy

  • Postal code: 78390
  • Population (rounded): 14800
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 32 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 91 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 94 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Bougival

  • Postal code: 78380
  • Population (rounded): 8800
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 29 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 88 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Buc

  • Postal code: 78530
  • Population (rounded): 5800
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 48 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 91 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 98 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): Collège Martin Luther King, Collège et Lycée franco-allemand
  • Comments from locals: Not much public transit, but good schools.

Carrières-sous-Poissy

  • Postal code: 78955
  • Population (rounded): 16100
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 29 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 82 %
  • Average family size: 2.5
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 84 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Carrières-sur-Seine

  • Postal code: 78420
  • Population (rounded): 15300
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 43 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 85 %
  • Average family size: 2.5
  • RER: A
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 93 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Chambourcy

  • Postal code: 78240
  • Population (rounded): 5700
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 40 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 90 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 92 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Chanteloup-les-Vignes

  • Postal code: 78570
  • Population (rounded): 10400
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 40 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 81 %
  • Average family size: 3
  • RER: D
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 80 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Chatou

  • Postal code: 78400
  • Population (rounded): 31200
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 31 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 84 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: A
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 89 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Conflans-Sainte-Honorine

  • Postal code: 78700
  • Population (rounded): 35500
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 55 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 85 %
  • Average family size: 2.5
  • RER: A
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 89 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Croissy-sur-Seine

  • Postal code: 78290
  • Population (rounded): 9900
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 50 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 88 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: A
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 96 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): British School of Paris (Private)
  • Comments from locals: One person commented that there were a lack of good shops in the town

Elancourt

  • Postal code: 78990
  • Population (rounded): 25600
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 35 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 89 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 89 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none
  • Notable Landmarks: France Miniature amusement attraction.

Étang-la-Ville

  • Postal code: 78620
  • Population (rounded): 4600
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 66 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 93 %
  • Average family size: 2.5
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none
  • Comments from locals: Great neighborhood, very quiet and familial, with forest all around. Good for hiking, cycling and other sports.

Fontenay-le-Fleury

Postal code: 78330
Population (rounded): 13500
% of Houses (vs apts): 17 %
% of families having at least 1 car: 83 %
Average family size: 2.2
RER: None
Transilien: Y
Tramway: None
French Public School – Brevet Avg: 87 %
Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Guyancourt

  • Postal code: 78280
  • Population (rounded): 28400
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 25 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 87 %
  • Average family size: 2.5
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 89 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Houilles

  • Postal code: 78800
  • Population (rounded): 31700
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 44 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 79 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: A
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 87 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

La Celle-Saint-Cloud

Le Chesnay-Rocquencourt

  • Postal code: 78150
  • Population (rounded): 31400
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 13 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 83 %
  • Average family size: 2.1
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 84 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): Ecole Blanche de Castille (Private)
  • Notable Landmarks: Large mall Westfield Parly 2
  • Comments from locals: Large mall Parly 2 (which isn’t open on Sundays).

Le Mesnil-le-Roi

  • Postal code: 78600
  • Population (rounded): 6300
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 54 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 89 %
  • Average family size: 2.6
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 94 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Le Pecq

Le Vésinet

  • Postal code: 78110
  • Population (rounded): 16100
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 48 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 86 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: A
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 97 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): Ecole internationale Malherbe (Le Vésinet) (Private)
  • Comments from locals: Quiet town, with good access to RER A

Les Clayes-sous-Bois

  • Postal code: 78340
  • Population (rounded): 17600
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 44 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 87 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 86 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Les Mureaux

  • Postal code: 78130
  • Population (rounded): 32600
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 33 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 74 %
  • Average family size: 2.9
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 74 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Limay

  • Postal code: 78520
  • Population (rounded): 16600
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 50 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 86 %
  • Average family size: 2.7
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 80 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Maisons-Laffitte

  • Postal code: 78600
  • Population (rounded): 23500
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 29 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 80 %
  • Average family size: 2.2
  • RER: A
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 94 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): L’Ermitage (Private)
  • Notable Landmarks: Chateau of Maisons-Laffitte
  • Comments from locals: One person commented about the lack of variety of restaurants. Very popular for horse-riding.

Mantes-la-Jolie

  • Postal code: 78200
  • Population (rounded): 44000
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 17 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 70 %
  • Average family size: 2.6
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 82 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Mantes-la-Ville

  • Postal code: 78711
  • Population (rounded): 19900
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 44 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 81 %
  • Average family size: 2.5
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 85 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Marly-le-Roi

  • Postal code: 78160
  • Population (rounded): 16200
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 21 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 86 %
  • Average family size: 2.2
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 87 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none
  • Notable Landmarks: Le Chateau de Marly
  • Comments from locals: Very friendly place generally, not too big. Popular wealthy community, with forest all around.

Maurepas

  • Postal code: 78310
  • Population (rounded): 18700
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 45 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 88 %
  • Average family size: 2.3
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 88 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Montesson

  • Postal code: 78360
  • Population (rounded): 15300
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 53 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 89 %
  • Average family size: 2.6
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 92 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Montigny-le-Bretonneux

  • Postal code: 78180
  • Population (rounded): 33000
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 30 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 86 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: C
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 92 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none
  • Comments from locals: One mother commented that she loves the fact that we have big pavements so her kid can walk safely and few parks nearby.

Noisy-le-Roi

  • Postal code: 78590
  • Population (rounded): 7600
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 49 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 92 %
  • Average family size: 2.5
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 98 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): Collège J-B de la Quintinye

Orgeval

  • Postal code: 78630
  • Population (rounded): 6200
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 90 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 96 %
  • Average family size: 2.7
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg:
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Plaisir

  • Postal code: 78370
  • Population (rounded): 31700
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 38 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 86 %
  • Average family size: 2.5
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 88 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Poissy

  • Postal code: 78300
  • Population (rounded): 37200
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 17 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 77 %
  • Average family size: 2.3
  • RER: A
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 78 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none
  • Notable Landmarks: Collegiale Notre-Dame de Poissy (Church)

Rambouillet

  • Postal code: 78120
  • Population (rounded): 26300
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 36 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 82 %
  • Average family size: 2.2
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 90 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none
  • Notable Landmarks: Château de Rambouillet
  • Comments from locals: One of the larger towns in Yvelines, a little bit further away from Paris, but still very popular.

Saint-Cyr-l’École

  • Postal code: 78210
  • Population (rounded): 18100
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 20 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 82 %
  • Average family size: 2.3
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 85 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none
  • Notable Landmarks: Les Fermes de Gally (Farm with fresh fruit and vegetables) which welcomes kids.

Saint-Germain-en-Laye

Sartrouville

  • Postal code: 78500
  • Population (rounded): 52700
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 38 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 78 %
  • Average family size: 2.5
  • RER: A
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 84 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Trappes

  • Postal code: 78190
  • Population (rounded): 32700
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 19 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 73 %
  • Average family size: 2.9
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 76 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Triel-sur-Seine

  • Postal code: 78510
  • Population (rounded): 11900
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 71 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 91 %
  • Average family size: 2.5
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 97 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Vélizy-Villacoublay

  • Postal code: 78140
  • Population (rounded): 21600
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 14 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 84 %
  • Average family size: 2.1
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: Y
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 90 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none
  • Notable Landmarks: Large mall Velizy 2 with all large stores such as IKEA and Auchan in the area.
  • Comments from locals: Mall is very popular, but a bit of an industrial feel.

Verneuil-sur-Seine

  • Postal code: 78480
  • Population (rounded): 15500
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 40 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 88 %
  • Average family size: 2.4
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 85 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): Notre-Dame International High School (NDIHS) (Private)

Vernouillet

  • Postal code: 78540
  • Population (rounded): 10100
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 60 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 88 %
  • Average family size: 2.8
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: None
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 78 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Versailles

  • Postal code: 78000
  • Population (rounded): 85400
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 11 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 75 %
  • Average family size: 2.2
  • RER: C
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 91 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): Collège du Sacré-Cœur (Private)
  • Notable Landmarks: Château de Versailles
  • Comments from locals: Beautiful town, with the charm of Paris, but a village feel. Too many tourists around the Palace of Versailles

Villepreux

  • Postal code: 78450
  • Population (rounded): 10900
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 72 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 91 %
  • Average family size: 2.7
  • RER: None
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: None
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 82 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Viroflay

  • Postal code: 78220
  • Population (rounded): 16100
  • % of Houses (vs apts): 35 %
  • % of families having at least 1 car: 78 %
  • Average family size: 2.3
  • RER: C
  • Transilien: Y
  • Tramway: Y
  • French Public School – Brevet Avg: 92 %
  • Bilingual School (Primary and higher): none

Public Transport and RER A train

Like the Hauts-de-Seine, several towns in the Yvelines, especially those in and around the Triangle d’Or, have good access to RER A (and thus La Défense). Nevertheless, Insee statistics show that 85% of households in the Yvelines have at least one car. They may not necessarily drive every day to work in their car, but they certainly have them to perhaps drive to the closest railway station, or to use on weekends.

There are also several public transportations in the works at the moment that are expected to be finished before the 2024 Olympics in Paris:

  • a new line RER E which is currently being built to transport commuters from many Yvelines communes such as Poissy and Les Mureaux to La Défense and central Paris.
  • new metro line 18 from Versailles to Orly airport
  • Four new tramway lines extensions across the Yvelines.

Greenery

As I mentioned in the Hauts-de-Seine section, I have noted the Ville Fleurie distinction that was given by the government association Le Conseil National des Villes et Villages Fleuris. They denote the designation, and how many plants (1-4) the town has received.

The Yvelines decided to do one better, and apply as a Department. As this area is surrounded by forests, the entire dept received the distinction of “Department Fleurie” (the only one in France). Since it didn’t make sense to note each town in this case.

spacer

If you are feeling a bit priced out of the Yvelines, you may want to look at the Eastern Suburb of Val de Marne which is also on RER A. From there, you can easily get you to central Paris and La Défense (if that is your priority) just as quickly. And of course, you can have another look at our other neighborhoods in Paris, Hauts-de-Seine, Seine-Saint-Denis and more.

Good luck and à bientôt!

Did you enjoy that article? Save it for later!


FREE NEWSLETTER

Check out our Substack and subscribe to get the latest posts and what’s happening in Paris and across France, straight to your inbox. À bientôt!

Yvelines (78): Living in the Chic Suburb West of Paris

Leave a Reply