Walks in Paris will be simple if you stay at the boutique hotel Degres de Notre Dame right in the heart of the action, within sight of Notre Dame Cathedral on one side and an easy walk to the Pantheon and the Latin Quarter on the other side. The hotel might be tiny by most standards, but the Hotel Degres de Notre
Dame offers a continental breakfast and an English speaking staff that is exceedingly helpful. They will help you with good local information, maps of the city and she will ease your stay in the walkable city of Paris.
Walk one block north of the hotel and you are at the Cathedral of Notre Dame and the island within the seine. This landmark can help to distinguish all other features on the maps and it can act as your guide to all of Paris; the 200-foot high towers of the Gothic cathedral built in 1163 are visible from several blocks around.
From the hotel you can walk through the grounds of the Cathedral to Saint Chapelle, a church built in 1240 to house holy relics, including the crown of thorns, and now famed for its stained glass windows. From there go along the seine to the Louvre.
An alternative is to walk to the boat dock on the seine and take the Batobus tour boats where 14 Euros gives you two days of on and off stops at eight locations of significance on the Seine. This could be one of the best bargains in Paris and will give you a great overview of the city.
In June, darkness falls at about 10:00 PM in Paris, lengthening your day of sightseeing.
An afternoon Paris walk will give you four to eight hours of daylight, enough to catch a lengthy hike and include a sunset from one of the 30 or more bridges that cross the Seine in the center of the city.
The first walk could start at the Notre Dame Cathedral and take you to the Musee du Louvre, walking through the gardens to the Place de la Concorde and its Egyptian obelisk. Continue along the Avenue des Champs-Elysees and through a gauntlet of sidewalk restaurants and upscale shops including a gigantic Sephorus.
The avenue ends at a rotary around the Arc de Triomphe. From there a walk down Avenue Kleber to the Trocadero will give you a great view of the Eiffel Tower. From the Eiffel Tower a walk through the Champ de Mars Park and then to Avenue de Tourville will take you to the Mussee D' Larmee, Napoleon's tomb and to the Musee d Orsay. From there a walk along the Seine will take you back to the Cathedral de Notre Dame.
With a 14 Euro, two-day Batoboat ticket you could combine walking and the boat's handy docks on the river to make the same trip with less walking.
Another walk from the Hotel Degres de Notre Dame will take you through the Latin Quarter. This one may best be done at twilight when the clubs and restaurants start to hum with music and the excitement of pick-up bands of clarinet, guitar, and violin that try to capture a Django Reinhardt, Stephane Grapelli mood.
The Sorbonne and Pantheon mark this area of clubs, restaurants, and lively nightlife.
Another small hotel in the Latin Quarter, the Observatoire Luxembourg, just across from the Garden of Luxembourg on the Boulevard Saint-Michel, gives good access to the heart of Paris and although small, will offer friendly service and convenience to the Metro at the Luxembourg station or to walks along the Seine.
Another Paris Walk in the Montmartre to the Basilica of Sacre Coeur (Sacred Heart) starts after a bus or subway ride to the vicinity of Gare du Norde, Gare St Lazare, or the Blanche Metro Station near Boulevard de Clichy, easily identified landmarks on the maps.
The Sacre Coeur is the highest point in Paris and from the steps of the basilica you can get a great view of the city.
Walk to the Moulin Rouge on Boulevard de Clichy and visit the cabaret that has for over a hundred years held performances.
Toulouse-Lautrec left a record of the turn of the century Moulin Rouge performers with his paintings, a style that remains with glitter and the feathers of the Cancan revue.
Many other guided tours by bike, walking , or Segway are available.
Paris may be the ultimate walkable city. So much history and great architecture located in a small area along the River Seine makes Paris ideal for those that like to walk. If you combine the boats that cruise the Seine with the buses that make loops through the heart of the city and if you use the Cathedral of Notre Dame and the Eiffel Tower as central landmarks, you can easily navigate the city and visit many of the historic sites in four or five walking trips.
The two day pass on the boat is a great bargain. When you combine Paris walking with a boat ride you can see much of the historic city.
|Walking Tours of Paris|
|Paris Walking Tours|