Saturday, September 12, 2009

Paris Bus tour


People often ask me "I'm coming to Paris, what should I do?" I never know what to answer of course (there are so many things to do in Paris...), but, if it's their first time here, I always recommend to start with a bus tour. It is a very touristy thing to do, but it helps having a rapid look at all the important things to see, to which you can always come back later. As far as I know, there are three tour bus companies in Paris : Cityrama, LesCarsRouges, ParisVision. I cannot tell you which one is the best, but maybe some of my visitors may...

26 comments:

  1. I think we went on the one you have taken a picture of. For my first visit to Paris it was a great way to see all the major points of interest and the commentary was good. The whole tour is just over two hours.

    Helped that it was a very hot Augut day and we could sit upstairs in the sunshine.

    The ticket lasts for two days so the 2nd day we hopped on and off at various places - never had to wait more than 10 minutes for the next bus.

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  2. I went on a Parisvision tour my first time in Paris and it helped orient me as well giving me a quick view of some of the monuments with no energy expended getting from one site to another. I never do those kinds of tours but I broke down and was glad I did!

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  3. Hey, Eric, I see actual un-bitmapped faces—how daring of you! These people will probably never find out they are quasi-famous. Have never done this, but clearly it's a good idea for getting your bearings in an unfamiliar city. Love your colorful shot too.

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  4. These folks all look so serious!! Its hard work being a tourist - slogging on with the jetlag nipping at your heels and thinking how nice a hot foot soak would feel right about now. ;)

    The man in the middle however, has just noticed a world famous Paris sight that's got his attention riveted. "Mais, oui! I'd recognize him anywhere - its Eric Tenin!!"

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  5. I took an American Express bus tour my first day in Paris. The tour couldn't go to Montmartre because terrorists had just bombed Sacre Couer. I was supposed to go there my last day on the Metro, but I had to stay in bed with a migraine. Sadly, I've never been back.

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  6. Zoom zoom. Great candid pic, Eric!

    LOL, Caro ~ I think he uttered that to the lady behind him, who's lowering her bifocals to get a better look.

    Never having been, I would take one of these to get the general lie of the land and better elevation than my usual stature allows. :)

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  7. I agree that these tours are a great way to get oriented for first time visitors. Be sure to get the tickets that get you both the bus *and* the Batobus!

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  8. Eric, you may have a point. That said, I've always said the VERY LAST THING I WOULD EVER DØ IN PARIS , is a tour bus! If you have a few days, maybe this is the way to go. I just think it's better to see the main things the first go and then return, return, return , return! :)
    Pardon, I don't know the French word for that . You get the idea!!!
    V
    PS Je retournerai! ( I pray Babelfish didn't let me down here.)

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  9. My recommendations to anyone going to visit Paris for the first time:

    1) WEAR COMFORTABLE SHOES
    2) WEAR COMFORTABLE SHOES
    3) WEAR COMFORTABLE SHOES!!!

    or take a the bus. Seriously, people ALWAYS underestimate the amount of walking they're going to do.

    these Tourist buses are really cool, though. You get an overview of the key monuments, which you can always come back to at your own pace. highly recommend the concept. going OFF the beaten track isn't always all that fun, seriously.

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  10. PS. These people aren't too happy about being photographed!

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  11. I can't believe that people would ask "what should I do?" in Paris, then again I can't believe that people come to San Francisco and ask "what is there to do here?"

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  12. They're in Paris, but they don't look very happy!
    It's that shell-shocked look of culture and sightseeing overload.

    I tend to agree with Virginia on this. My ideal is: good guide book, carnet of metro tickets, pair of Tomate's shoes and set off.
    Plus a river trip!

    Having said that, this is a good way to see a lot in a short space of time.

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  13. I always recommend a bus tour in London too - it just gives you the first scan of the place, very useful. Also if you find you haven't had time to see this or that in detail at the end of the hols, at least you saw a quick glimpse of it! I love them.
    I agree, these people don't look happy at all. How on earth can they go to Paris and not smile?

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  14. I agree, the best way for me is to discover by yourself and this is absolutely one of the best time in life if you can share this with someone with who has the same feelings and desires than you to know more and more on this or this topic. Well you know what I mean when you are in the same wave. I really enjoy tour cities like Virginia, tomate and Drummond spoke of it!
    Yes that's a great feeling!

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  15. I had been to Paris many times when I took the bus. I definitely recommend it. Do take the bus that will give you a ticket valid for 2 days. Very important if you get a late start, traffic is heavy, or if there's bad weather.

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  17. Pretrip tips that helped. Oooh yeah, shoes. My feet (not everyone's) still hurt from a month in November - and I took the metro alot. Fodor's and Frommer's chat pgs have a wealth of info. Metro/bateau/bus info all in one place with explanations. Don't let the uncool factor stop you from doing the bus. Unless you move there, Paris has more than you can ever see in any short trip. (And no one need ever know - unless someone posts a photo of you on the bus on the www!)

    Shell Sherree - LOL - I think the lady only half heard him and is looking down because she thought he'd be in his trademark prone position. ; )

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  18. I have to say we have always avoided the bus tour route....


    There is something about seeing a site approached through the area surrounding it that leaves me with the best memories...puts things more in perspective.


    Sean

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  19. Alexa : "Hey, Eric, I see actual un-bitmapped faces—how daring of you! These people will probably never find out they are quasi-famous."

    LOL. Exactly. I figured out that since they are tourists they probably will never find out and would not mind being in the photo...

    After what you all said about them being unhappy, bla, bla, I'm not so sure now!

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  20. Sure the V-sign would have been an appropriate 'hi' toward you, Eric :) They may not be Japanese, that's it!!!
    Where are they now? Probably back to their home country and remembering their tour ... I'm feeling lucky ... all I love so much is close to me... , since I live in this city. I never forget to think of it, believe me!!! I'm a true lover ;)

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  21. The one in your photo (L'Open Tour) is the best. I've done it three times :-)

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  22. I love the Bato-bus, seeing everything from the river - can you take us a photo of that?

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  23. Ahh, I wish I was on that bus right now! I would definitely be smiling! :)

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