Another great travel idea in my Paris Gems series.
At the time of this visit to Paris in October 2019, I had a few boat rides under my belt taken along the River Seine. However, I had yet to do a boat tour of the lovely Canal Saint-Martin. The canal intersects with the Seine. It is approximately 4.5 kilometers long. It was built by Georges-Eugène Haussmann, commonly known as the Baron Haussmann, in 1860-1862. The Canal St. Martin was part of a ginormous city improvement and renovation project assigned to Haussmann by the Emperor Napoleon III.
So Shelby and I ventured out one beautiful afternoon onto the canal. We booked on Canauxrama:
For all of their itineraries click here: https://www.canauxrama.com You can choose from different itineraries which include morning or afternoon departure times.
We chose the 3 pm cruise with a departure point of 71 Quai de Valmy 75010 Paris (métro: République) This is a two hour cruise with commentary. The actual boarding location was just a stone’s throw from the front of Hôtel de Nord. Included in our ticket was a yummy crepe, fruit or chocolate, your choice.
The canal has a completely different look and feel from the River Seine which is reason enough to climb aboard the Canauxrama. The canal is lined with trees, which in the fall will dazzle you with color, but in the spring and summer will relax you with their deep green foliage. Go past a swinging bridge, two locks and through the mysterious Bastille tunnel. This tour combines the charms of both the Saint-Martin canal, and the River Seine, encompassing so many treasured historical sites and bridges along its route.
The waterway remains uncovered until Square Frédéric-Lemaître. From there to the Arsenal basin (past the Place de la Bastille), the canal disappears into a tunnel.
This installment of Paris Gems, along the Canal Saint-Martin, is brought to you by your insatiable traveling friend, Judy. Recently, the Museums of Paris created a new social media hashtag in light of the havoc which Covid has wreaked on Paris tourism. And I would echo those eloquent words here: #demainjereviens (Tomorrow I am coming back!)
My most recent trip to Paris was in February of this year 2020. Yeap I returned to the states on the 24th, and just under the Corona radar as it turns out. The cool thing about this trip to Paris was I played like a first time tourist. I did this because it so happens I was visiting with first time tourists to this beautiful city. My sister, Cindy, her husband Danny and my lovely niece Racheal. My daughter Shelby also joined us. She is currently living in Paris as an au pair. It was a blast for Shelby and I to take our family to all the “usual” places and have the opportunity to view those breathtaking sites through their fresh and expectant lenses.
So I thought it would be fun to recreate their itinerary for you. And hey, what perfect timing. Because most of us in this world are mandated shelter in place right now due to COVID-19. Yes indeed, what a perfect time for us to dream and plan our next vacation. We CAN do that.. Alors, Voila! My contribution to your Paris dream as you plan a first visit. Or, maybe you are like me and have longed to be your loved one’s personal guide to this iconic city. In either case, I hope this is helpful. Before you go, download the citymapper app. It is an excellent app for deciding the best transportation route around the city. Please note, our “Day 1 to Day 7” was a Sunday to Saturday. Yours might be different, so please check online to make sure of opening days and times for all of the places you buy tickets. Now let’s get started.
**You always arrive in Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG) airport (or anywhere in Europe) a day after you leave the states. And that’s where we are starting at the airport. Sure you can take the inexpensive RER train to your BNB or to your hotel. (Just go to terminal 3 at CDG to catch the RER train to Paris.) But I wouldn’t recommend this with luggage. It’s just too plain hard, and you look like a target of opportunity to a thief.. It is worth the money to pay for a cab or an Uber. I have the Uber app in my phone so it is an easy click, and then Poof! I am in an Uber headed to paradise. In terminal 1, you meet your Uber on departures level outside. So, be sure to check your Uber app for the correct place to call depending on your terminal of arrival. If I am flying to a new place, I actually like to check online before leaving home in order to make sure I know where to go to call the Uber upon arrival.
**Use the airport ATM to get cash, that is to say, euros. I like using cash when I travel abroad because it is a ton easier having two or three cash withdrawals import into my budget than it is 25 to 50 separate transactions from various places who now have my credit card number to boot. If you’re like me, you have a vacation budget or spending limit. Well, I get cash, according to my budget, and categorize it as “vacation” or else split it, for instance, between “vacation” and “dining out.” My hotel or BNB is prepaid at this point. And I ordered all of my tourist tickets online and paid for them prior to traveling. They were either printed or stored in my phone for mobile retrieval. (Don’t worry there’s help for that here in this blog) So that pretty much leaves food. It’s nice later when I’m not sorting through 50 different transactions saying, “Did I really spend that money at that place?” Caution: Cash is easily pickpocketed like your cell phone. So protect it!
**It’s likely you will arrive anywhere between 7 am and 11:00 am depending on your airline carrier. Once you arrive to your hotel room, feel free to freshen up. And if you must, take a short nap (no longer than 2 hours), then eat the lunch that you grabbed from the local grocery story (if not the airport prior to leaving). Excellent local grocers include Carrefour, Monoprix, or Lidl. Then, after your shower, short nap, and lunch, you’re ready to go. Check your citymapper app for your best routes for getting to your first site.
**Arc de Triomph. You can buy your tickets ahead of time here: http://www.paris-arc-de-triomphe.fr/en/ I printed them. Your ticket should be good for one visit for one year from the date of purchase.The arc anchors the Champs-Élysées on one end, and the Place de Concorde on the other end. The arc offers an excellent view of that famed avenue Champs-Élysées from the terrace. Napoleon 1 ordered the construction of the arc in 1806. It memorializes names of battles and generals from the Revolution and the First Empire. Every evening, the flame is lit on the tomb of the Unknown Soldier from the Great War. Interestingly, during the German occupation of WWII from 1940-1944, machine guns were placed at all 12 avenues converging at Place de E’toile surrounding theArc de Triomphe. Additionally, four cannons were placed at each of the main 4 arteries: Avenues Foch, Victor Hugo, Champs-Élysées, and Marceau. Learn more about Occupied Paris 1940-1944 by clicking below:
**From the Arc, make your way to the Pantheon located in the Latin Quarter of the 5th arrondissement. Buy your tickets here: http://www.paris-pantheon.fr/en/ Also good for one visit for one year from the date of purchase. Besides the immaculate and stunning architecture of this building, the two main highlights of the Pantheon are the crypt and the Foucault Pendulum. The crypt inters larger than life personalities such as Victor Hugo, Marie Curie, Alexandre Dumas, Jean Moulin and Voltaire, and many others who were instrumental in shaping French culture, literature and academia, and heralding their freedom, as in the case of Jean Moulin.
**It’s been a long day, so call it good and take a short stroll through the Latin Quarter on your way to the metro stop. Enjoy dinner on an inviting terrace of a Parisienne cafe. Then return to your cozy place of lodging for the night. Set out your tickets for the next day’s adventure, check citymapper app for your morning destination, and get a good night’s sleep.
**Louvre. It opens at 0900. Be there when it opens. You can thank me later. You can get your tickets here: https://www.ticketlouvre.fr/louvre/b2c/index.cfm/home Our tickets, which I printed out, were day specific. Note it is closed on Tuesdays. We went on Monday. The Louvre was a royal palace, the residence of French kings dating from Francis 1 of 1546 until 1682 when Louis XIV moved his court to Versailles. Today it houses a vast collection of some of the greatest art and antiquities in the world. Okay the Louvre can be overwhelming, but if it’s your first time to Paris, then make sure you see these Louvre highlights. Certainly modify the list if you like, but if you are art-challenged and need guidance, this is very good.
Start in the Sully Wing on Level 1 where you will find the Pavillon de l’Horlage.You will be standing in the original medieval fortress. This underground area reveals the medieval fortress that was created for King Philippe Auguste in 1190. You will be thrilled to see the remnants of the medieval moat, and the dungeons, as well as the Salle Saint-Louis (built between 1230 and 1240), the only remaining vestige of the medieval fortress’ main building.
Before leaving the Sully Wing, you must see Great Sphinx of Tanis and The Venus de Milo located on level 0.
Next move on to the Denon Wing, and check off the lion share of your Louvre visit: The Winged Victory of Samothrace and just around the corner from Winged Victory, is the famed Mona Lisa. But don’t expect to be able to get up close and personal. She is roped off and the crowds around her are huge. Better to be there at opening. But also in this wing are two of my favorites: The Coronation of Napoleon and Liberty Leading the People, the latter by Eugene Delecroix. And prepare to be enthralled by the utter devastation of The Raft of the Medusa. And before leaving Denon Wing, get a long look at sculptures by Italian Renaissance artist Michelangelo’s, both The Dying Slave and The Rebellious Slave. Honestly, as I study these sculptures, the artist’s emotions are palpable.
You can go to the Richelieu Wing on level 1 at any point beginning or ending your visit to the Louvre to visit the Petite Galerie also known as the beautiful Glass-Covered Sculpture Courtyards.It’s breathtaking and full of light.
Finally Napoleon’s Apartments are not to be missed. This part of the tour may be helpful to those of you who want something that you can sink your teeth into beyond the iconic art that adorns the walls of the Louvre. They are located on Level 1 of the Richelieu Wing. Room 87.
**This was a perfect day for lunch packing of sandwiches and chips and snacks put together before leaving our hotel and made from our local Carrefour grocery purchases. We left the Louvre and went out into the lovely Tuileries Garden, a public garden located between the Louvre and the Place de la Concorde. Great for lunching and just for relaxing.
**After eating our packed lunch in the Tuileries, we walked over to Angelinas at 226 Rue de Rivoli for the famous Le chocolat chaud à l’ancienn. All you have to know is this: it is hot chocolate, delicious x one million. And it is okay to be seated for only drinks. If there is a line when you get there, fear not. I have never known the wait to be over 20 mins or so unless perhaps it’s prime time summer travel season.
**After Angelina’s, we wrapped up this segment at Place de la Concorde a square in the 8th arrondissement of Paris, France, which anchors the Tuileries Gardens opposite from the Louvre. It also bookends the Avenue Champs-Elysées opposite the Arc de Triomph. This gorgeous square is known for the Luxor Obelisk, a 3,300 year old Egyptian obelisk erected on the square in October 1836 surrounded by luxury hotels. The Obelisk sits on the spot where once the gruesome guillotine stood during the French Revolution.
**For the remainder of our afternoon, we chose to wander around the epic Marias district of Paris including St.Paul’s cathedral and St Gervais church. This is also known as the Jewish District of Paris.
**Before leaving St. Paul’s we arrived at Le Mémorial de la Shoah the Jewish Memorial and museum. This memorial is free to enter, but donations are accepted. This memorial museum chronicles every Jew who was deported from Paris during the war, but also honors those who aided the Jewish people during this devastating time in the history of France. The Wall of the Righteous bears the names of those who helped to rescue Jews in France during the war, not only from the Nazi occupiers but from French collaborators as well.We were able to squeeze this in later in the afternoon of our second day. I would suggest you afford a lot more time to visit this documentary center and its incredulous exhibit.
**Head over to The Île de la Cité, where Paris was first settled in 52 BC by a small Celtic tribe called Parisii. Here in the heart of the city, you can visit St. Chapelle and The Concierge in concert together. Buy your tickets here: https://booking.parisinfo.com/il4-offer_i536-conciergerie-sainte-chapelle.aspx Your ticket will be good for one visit to each place on the same day, also good for up to a year. St. Chapelle was the royal chapel for Kings of France for several centuries and was originally intended to house precious Christian relics, including Christ’s crown of thorns, which as legend has it, was acquired by Saint Louis. It is a breathtaking stained glass experience. Arranged across 15 windows, the glass panes depict 1,113 scenes from the Old and New Testaments recounting the history of the world until the arrival of the relics in Paris. Do this tour in concert with the Concierge next door which was once a revolutionary tribunal and prison where Marie-Antoinette was held prior to her beheading. When you exit the Concierge, before exiting to the street, this is your chance to walk inside the Palais de Justice which houses the law courts today. It is a striking building and worth the venture. For more details and photographs on Sainte-Chapelle click below:
**Time for lunch. We packed again! This saves tons of money and allows us to enjoy the delightful Parisienne outdoors. Today we ate our packed lunches in my favorite square in all of Paris, the Place Dauphine. This is a public square located near the western end of the Île de la Cité in the first arrondissement of Paris. It is just a stone’s throw from St. Chapelle, Conciergerie, and Palais de Justice.
**After lunch, leave Place Dauphine via Pont Neuf, the oldest bridge in Paris, and turn left and take your time walking along the Seine River, by way of the Quai des grands Augustins. It will turn into Quai St-Michele. Take this to Shakespeare and Company bookstore just past Rue de Petit Pont. Peruse this infamous bookstore for as long as you like, but no pictures are allowed inside.
Side note: The original Shakespeare and Company was owned and operated by American Sylvia Beach at 12 rue de l’Odéon in the 1920s until the summer of 1940 when the Nazis occupied Paris. Sylvia was a literature icon and her bookstore was a welcome respite for the likes of Hemingway, Joyce, Ezra Pound, Fitzgerald and many others. She was truly a great literary influence and publisher among literary expats in Paris in the early 20th century. She was also instrumental in making a global impact on literature that still resonates in the world today. The current Shakespeare and Company was started in the early 1950’s by American George Whitman and given its name in honor of Sylvia Beach and her contributions to literature. For more interesting, in depth details about Hemingway’s sojourn in Paris, click below.
As you leave the bookstore, don’t miss the great view you have here of Notre Dame under reconstruction. Then, make a right turn onto Rue St. Julien-le-Pauvre walking behind the bookstore to one of the most beautiful little spots in Paris. Visit the medieval church of St. Julien-le- Pauvre, and the lovely park next to it. Stop sit and relax for awhile. Then take a left and walk about halfway down the picturesque street of Rue Galande visiting Shelby’s favorite boulangerie (bakery) on the right, if you so desire, for a sweet roll. Then do a turnaround, going back down Rue Galande from which you came and continue across Rue Sainte Jacques and onto Rue St. Séverin into the Latin Quater. Rue St. Séverin is one of the oldest streets in Paris and No 22 is fun to find. It is the most narrow building in the city. It currently houses a 17th century hotel.
**Find another Parisienne cafe for dinner before heading over to see the EiffelTower in all its glory, completely lit up after dark.
**Eiffel Tower all lit up at night! Wait for dark and prepare to be dazzled.
**Okay now head back to your hotel, and get another good night’s sleep. You are going to need it. Also check citymapper for how long your commute will be to Versailles tomorrow. Whatever it says, add 30 minutes to 1 hour on top of that. If it says your commute is 1 hour. Then make like it is 1 hour and 45 minutes.
**Versailles. For starters wear comfortable walking shoes or you will be miserable today. Definitely buy your tickets online. Buy the “passport” for your regular entry ticket into the palace. We did not get the passport with timed entry. We purchased the regular passport ticket. BECAUSE we bought a guided tour (with a specific tour date and time) in conjunction with buying our passport ticket for the palace. And if you have children, under 18, they are free, but the guided tours are only free to children 10 and under. Buy your tickets here (both the Passport and the guided tour of your choice) and print them out. http://en.chateauversailles.fr/plan-your-visit/tickets-and-prices I highly recommend you pay the 10 euro (extra) for a guided tour. The tours are small and can show you locations and rooms you don’t get to see in the palace otherwise. HERES THE DEAL. If you have a private guided tour, then you have a separate entrance from the throngs of other peasants. The private tours enter in the building to the right of main entrance A. So, if you’re standing facing the Palace/Entrance A, just make a 1/4 turn to the right and you are facing the north wing of the building, and you will see the stairs into that section of building which take you directly to your tour guide.You will be excited because there will likely be a very long line to enter the palace at entrance A. Once you finish with your tour, you continue inside the castle. No line. But of course the castle will be crowded. YOU MUST HAVE both your passport ticket and your guided tour ticket (they are two different tickets) in hand at the tour guide meeting spot. They will check both at that time. Our guided tour time was 9:30. We walked straight into the North Wing with that guided tour ticket and our regular palace passport ticket. The private guided tour lasted about an hour and boom we were dropped off in the main palace. Save your passport tickets. You will need them again later for Trianon and the Coach House.
**After the palace, we went out to the lovely gardens and ate our lunch which we packed from our grocery store purchases.
**Now that you are energized with lunch in your gullet, be sure to visit The Estate of Trianon, which includes Grand Trianon and Petit Trianon palaces, as well as the Queen’s Hamlet and a variety of ornamental gardens.There are golf carts on hand you can rent to cart yourself to this section of the estate, but they are ridiculously expensive. Find the tram stop. Or do as we did: walk to the Estate of Trianon and take the tram back to the palace when you’re finished. The tram is not free, but super cheap, and you can pay the guy cash when you get on board. NOTE: If I ever return to Versailles, I am going to spend an entire day at the Estate of Trianon. No palace. We wanted to see more of it beyond the PetiteTrianon and a few of the gardens. But we were already exhausted from our palace tour, and the amount of walking we had done to this point. I am just warning you not to get too wrapped around the axel about not being able to conquer all of the Estate of Trianon, on this your first visit to Versailles. Research about the Estate of Trianon before you go, and decide what is important to you. BUT the palace itself is a must do site to knock off of your Versailles check list. Trianon can wait if it must.
**Now that you are finished with the palace and Trianon, walk directly across the street in front of the palace and visit the Coach Gallery. You gain entrance with your regular palace passport ticket. Located in the Great Stables, the Coach Gallery exhibits an exceptional collection of carriages, sedan chairs and sledges.These vehicles are extremely ornamental and so fun to see up close and personal.They have been used in the past to serve royal, imperial and presidential power.
**Okay, when you are all done in Versailles, you can head back to Paris.Use Citymapper or treat yourself to an Uber. But if you do the latter, it will be pricey. Once in Paris, return to your hotel if you like and pack it in early. You deserve it. On the other hand, if you feel up to it, take in some other wonderful places like Les Invalides or The Cluny Museum. Or our personal favorite art museum in Paris, the Orsay. It is a ginormous mecca of impressionism art in the most beautiful building ever (old train station!) At any rate, once you’re back to your cozy home away from home, you can cook your dinner (BNB) or pick up dinner and take it back to your hotel. We cooked dinner in our BNB on this particular evening. Set out tomorrow’s tickets for the Catacombs and check citymapper for your route.
**Montmartre: No tickets required here! Montmartre is full of ambience! Perched on the top of a small hill in the 18th arrondissement, it is a serious source of material for the arts, and inspiration for the cinema. It also was and still is the home of painters. Picasso loved this place. Montmartre gives abundant pleasure to those who stroll around it and figures high on the list of Paris must sees.
**We arrived at the base of the hill of Montmartre by way of the Abbesses Metro Stop. You can take the stairs, but in the interest of saving your legs and since this is day 5 of a 7 day trip with a LOT of walking, I would take the elevator up to the top. Abbesses is way. down. under. ground. So normally, yeah, we take the stairs to exit any metro in Paris. But at Abbesses you really want to think about that. It is the deepest Paris metro station at 118 feet.
**So okay once you exit Abbesses, make sure you go visit the “Love Wall.” It’s fun and a great place for a picture. Then sit for a coffee at a cafe directly across from the love wall and/or shop at a super cute souvenir store right next to it just before you start up the hill.
**We are ready to hike up to Montmartre. At the top meander around the famous Place du Tertre with all of its local artistry, then keep walking to Sacre Coeur Basilica. The Place du Tertre is a square in the 18th arrondissement of Paris. Only a few streets away from Montmartre’s Basilica of the Sacré Cœur, it is the heart of the city’s elevated Montmartre quarter. Note: We came up by way of Abbesses Metro but if you come up Rue Lepic, well that’s also a wonderful way to go. Along that route, you can see where Vincent van Gogh lived with his brother Theo in Paris. I love Rue Lepic and its history. For more (fascinating) information about Van Gogh click below:
Construction on the Montmartre Sacré-Cœur Basilica began in 1875 and ended in 1914. The organ is considered to be one of the greatest in all of Europe.You can go and decide for yourselves. Interestingly the basilica, a Roman Catholic church, is also a double monument. If you go inside you will find memorials representing national penance for two major events: The defeat of France in the 1870 Prussian War – (Yes the Germans occupied Paris from 1870-1871 as well as 1940-1044) – and also for the socialist Paris Commune of 1871 a year later. (Think Parisienne Civil War basically) Tumultuous times indeed.
**Lunch time. And we did not pack our lunches today because we are going down the hill (opposite of the side we came up) directly below the basilica to a captivating restaurant called L’Ete en Pente Douce. It’s entirely too cute to miss. The food is great and priced reasonably. So sit and take a load off. Moreover, the walk down from Montmartre to this restaurant is one of those off the beaten paths in Paris! Don’t miss it!
**The Abbey Bookshop and Saint Sulpice. After lunch, we moseyed on back to Paris’ centre. I am both a cathedral and book lover. Maybe it’s the history link they share. I don’t know; but I never tire of either.
**When I purchased our tickets for the catacombs here http://catacombes.paris.fr/en/visit I did so for a specific day and time. This is yet another excellent example of why you always buy your tickets ahead of time.We arrived at the Catacombs for our designated tour at 4:00 pm. There was an unblievable long line of people waiting to get in and buy tickers. We walked right pass that line and into the entrance with our time stamp on our tickets and were admitted immediately. I can’t tell you how good it feels to bypass long lines, which we pretty much did all week because we had purchased all of our tickets ahead of time.
Paris had a huge problem in the late 18th century. Their city was being over ran with the dead due to that fact the cemeteries were way overpopulated. This led to a major city wide health crisis. So they decided to do something about it. The new underground burial site was originally called the Paris Municipal Ossuary, but later changed to the “Catacombs.” The first cemetery evacuations were made from 1785 to 1787 and concerned the largest cemetery in Paris, the Saints-Innocents cemetery. Starting in 1809, the Catacombs were opened to the public by appointment. And today? You can take this somewhat ghoulish but absolutely fascinating tour yourself. Audio guides are provided in your language and do an excellent job of giving you all the facts as you make your way through the labyrinth of bones.
**For dinner tonight you have a 7:30 pm reservation at l’auberge Etchegorry. Let me just say that the food in Paris at the local cafes is very good. But I always make a reservation for at least one special restaurant that serves truly authentic French food on at least one night. This place will not disappoint in terms of ambience, service, and quality. And it will not break the bank. Make your reservation here: https://etchegorry.fr/fr
Eiffel Tower. It opens at 9:30. Your tickets are time and day specific. We made our reservations for 10:30 am. And we reserved our tickets here: https://ticket.toureiffel.paris/en#_ga=2.148962035.435615988.1585695867-1093338768.1585695867 Our tickets were kept on my mobile phone. Just make sure they are downloaded. When you purchase your ticket make sure you purchase it for the top most level. You can purchase slightly cheaper tickets for going up only to the 2nd floor, (but why would you do that??) Your ticket will be for “the top.” You will take a lift to the top. But you can opt to take the less crowded stairs back down. Don’t worry there is 0 danger of falling. The stairs are completely encased with a barrier. But the view is so different and well, it’s just dang fun. Personally, I think the stairs are way less intimidating than the lift. There are two entrances into the Eiffel Tower. Entrance 1 and Entrance 2. Typically Entrance 2 is less crowded if you are in a hurry, but at either one, y0u will have to go through security to gain entrance to the tower. Also note this from the website: “Make sure you check the time on your e-ticket, this is the time when you need to be on the esplanade, in a queue for “Visitors with tickets” (green flag). So that you’re here on time, we recommend arriving 15 minutes in advance so that you have time to make it through the security checks at the entrance. For example, if your ticket is for 10am, plan to arrive at the Eiffel Tower entrance at 9.45am.”
The digging work started on the 28th January 1887. On the 31st March 1887. (wow as I type this, TOday (March 31) is this girl’s 131st birthday!) TheTower was finished in record time – 2 years, 2 months and 5 days – and was established as a veritable technical feat. It was a creation of Gustave Eiffel’s specifically for the 1889 world’s fair. It was planned to be only temporary. Well, as you can see, thank goodness that plan was thrown out the window, and we still have her today. P.S. The Parisiennes as a whole, mostly did not like this huge ugly metal giant in the middle of their fair and gorgeous old city. They thought she was an eye sore. They registered many complaints about it. Still, it has managed to sustain itself for 131 years, and we are all the better for it.
**We left the Tower and walked a short way, past the Merry-Go-Rounds down to the Seine where we sat and ate our packed lunch of local purchased, fresh baguettes or croissants (yummy) along with our sandwiches and chips from the grocery. We had tickets for an afternoon boat ride.You can research all the different boat companies in Paris and choose for yourself. We paid for a simple 1 hour cruise on Bateaux Parisiens and purchased our tickets here: https://www.bateauxparisiens.com/english.html So this is an itinerary for first timers to Paris. Thus, I would always recommend doing a boat cruise at some point, because the view of all these iconic sites from the water is just all together different than what you get close up. Both are fantastic. If you have the time to do so, try a canal/river combo cruise in one, with Canauxrama. You can buy your tickets for that here: https://www.canauxrama.com/en/ And you can read more about that the Canal Saint Martin tour here:
SIDE NOTE: In 1993, a monument was created to commemorate the round-up of 14,000 Jews in Paris (by the French Vichy Nazi collaborators) from 16-17 July 1942, and their detainment in the Vélodrome d’Hiver, an indoor cycle track at the corner of the boulevard de Grenelle and the rue Nélaton in the 15th arrondissement of Paris. They were deported from this inhumane holding place to various concentration camps around Germany. Men, Women and children. Very few of them survived. On the day you go to the Eiffel Tower, please just ahead of that, go by this memorial. Study up on what happened in July, 1942 to the Jews in Paris and be determined to come away from this visit with one additional new fact (you never knew before) about this devastating era of French history.
**We had a relaxing walk the remainder of the afternoon around the city, grabbed dinner at a local French bistro and eventually made our way home to our BNB where we had a good night’s sleep and prepared for our last day in the city of lights. The Fat Tire Bike tour.
Fat Tire Bike Tours. Reserve your tickets here: https://www.fattiretours.com/paris I know I know I say this all the time. But Fat Tire Bikes is an absolute must for a first visit or a 5oth visit to this city. I have done bike tours with this company in Paris (night and day tours), Berlin, London and Barcelona.They are fantastic. So. much. fun. The English tours are always done with native English speakers. I love the people that I get to meet like our friend John from Milwaukee who lives in Barcelona. He is an American expat living in Barcelona with his wife and daughter. I always meet the most fascinating people on Fat Tire Bike tours from all different nations and backgrounds. This was my daughter Shelby and I’s 6th or 7th Fat Tire tour (I’ve lost count). But it was my niece Racheal’s first. She was nervous at the thought of biking thorough Paris. But I assured her: No problem! The guides are excellent and their instructions are impeccable. Just do it. It’s truly a thrill.
So there you are: 7 perfect days in Paris. And I’m not going to charge you a thing, except this. Please enjoy every minute of the dream, as you read this. And when you actually go, have all the fun you can muster. That is all the payment I require.