The second tour operator has four different routes around Paris
and is called l'Open Tour Buses, which will get
you to a great deal more different tourist attractions. Although it is slightly more
expensive for a pass, you can hop on different buses to go on different routes, which will
get you covering far more of the incredible monuments and landmarks of this famous city and you can very easily
spot these buses as they are yellow and green!
Both of these tour operators have an open deck at the top of the bus, which although is
the best place to view the sights, you do have to pick on a nice day, otherwise you will
be stuck down below or get very wet! You can purchase the tickets for these
bus tours from selected outlets, in
advance or even in some cases from the bus drivers themselves.
Another great way of getting around Paris is via the
Batobus service that runs along the River Seine and has selected drop off and pick up
points. Again, this is a system that operates as a hop on and hop off service for
the purchase of a day pass, which is another great way of seeing the sights from a totally
different perspective. This will get you to places such as the Eiffel Tower, Notre
Dame Cathedral, The Louvre and other places
situated along the Seine, but you are limited to the vicinity, rather than going further
afield, although the experience is something quite different.
One thing that we found though, is that you would have to be rather mobile to use this
service, as you will end up going up and down the stairs at different points to get onto
the Quay, so if you have young children or push chairs, then fitness will help with
negotiating stairs and steep inclines!
However, if you are an energetic and also an environmentally friendly type of person, then
you may wish to consider using a bicycle. Well, Paris has a great system in place
where you can cycle around, knowing that you are going to be safe doing so, with the
amount of cycle lanes in place that amount to well over 350 kilometres.
But if you do not already have your own cycle with you, then you can hire a bike with the Vélib' Self-Service Bike Scheme, with pick up
and drop off points all over the city and at only around 300 metres apart. For an
initial set up charge and only a small fee when you use your cycle you can use the cycle
for short trips and maybe from one arrondissement to the next by choosing a one day
ticket, or you can opt for a five day ticket. However, if you are staying in Paris
for a longer period of time then a yearly pass could be the best option, which is what
many people do and it certainly saves you a lot of money and hassle with parking, plus
gets you fitter!
Unfortunately, someone does have to be over fourteen years of age to take advantage of
this service, but it is definitely a great alternative from the metro of getting around
this famous City of Lights. Although these passes can be obtained online, you can
also obtain them from the Vélib' Service Points if you decide upon the option when you
are already there, and we would like to point out that the first 30 minutes of every
journey you take using the Vélib bike is completely free of charge!
We have found that travelling around Paris can
be fun, even with children. And although at rush hour times it is always goings
to be hectic, taking the more, shall we say, tourist type avenues can actually be a lot
more fun for everyone and you get to see a lot more of Paris from above ground!