People seem to either love or hate guided city tours. But to my mind, there is no better way to get your bearings in a new city. And this includes Paris.
Many travellers seem to avoid Paris tours. I think it might be because Paris has such a long list of must-see highlights…if they choose to, visitors can treat Paris like a supermarket shopping list, ticking attractions off one-by-one.
I’m always amazed when people say they’ve visited Paris (sometimes more than once) but they don’t really have any idea of how the arrondissements hang together or whether something they saw was on the left or right bank of the Seine River.
This is where guided tours can really help. You not only get your bearings, which really assists future wanderings but you are sure to pick up something you didn’t know about this magical city.
And the great news is that Paris offers tour options for just about everyone! Walking, bike and bus tours are very popular and easy to track down at every price point.
Eight years ago, on our first ever full day in Paris we ignored the jet-lag and braved the traffic (sans helmets) to do an electric bike tour of Paris. We were lucky in that we were the only travellers who had booked the tour for that day, so we had the tour guide all to ourselves. Our tour started at Place Vendôme and we learnt so much as we crossed from right to left bank visiting both big sites and hidden secrets.
But, as you might imagine, not all Paris tours work for everyone, so make sure you do your research before you book. I always look for multilingual tours that offer a diverse itinerary – when I am trying to get to know a city, the further a tour takes me the better. I also use sites like TripAdvisor to check the reviews of fellow travellers.
Have you done a Paris tour that you would recommend to others, or do you have tips for selecting a tour? If so, I’d love it if you’d share your experience in the comments below.
Until next time – au revoir.