Sightseeing Cycling Route in Paris

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cycling route in paris

Cycling in Paris is easy and a great way to explore the city and do some sightseeing.
This route will bring you close to all of the major landmarks.

Paris is one European city that is strongly associated with cycling.

This mode of transport is part of the relaxed atmosphere that runs right through the city, so much so that it’s usually included as part of the clichéd stereotypes in Hollywood movies that are set in the French capital. 

It’s not just average Parisians that love cycling though. Every year, millions of cycling fans flock to the city to watch the biggest race of the year as the Tour de France comes to a climax in the City of Light. 

For these fans, it’s a dream to cycle through Paris, following in the tracks of their favorite cycling stars.

Thankfully, cycling in Paris is easy. It’s also a great way to explore the city and do some sightseeing. 

Sightseeing Route: Place de l’Alma to Notre Dame de Paris

If you only have one day in Paris and you want to see all of the main sights, then this route will bring you close to all of the major landmarks.

Running 6.5 km along the River Seine and through the city’s streets, you’ll get to experience Paris up close and personal. 

  1. Starting off at the Place de l’Alma, you’ll have views of the Eiffel Tower over the river. There’s also the Glamme de la Liberte here, which is a 1:1 scale replica of the torch at the top of the Statue of Liberty in New York.
    As an alternative to this starting point, you can begin on the grounds of the Eiffel Tower and cycle over the river to rejoin the original route.
  2. From Place de l’Alma, you can head along Avenue George V towards Avenue des Champs-Elysees. Along here you’ll see some of Paris’ most beautiful homes and the famous Fouquet restaurant at the Champs-Elysees.
    Again, you can extend this route if you want to get closer to the Arc de Triomphe. This way you’ll arrive at the Champs-Elysees from a different angle. 
  3. With the Arc de Triomphe behind you, you’ll cycle along the Avenue des Champs-Elysees and then turn right onto Winston Churchill Avenue. Along this road, you’ll find the Grand Palais and the Petit Palais, two of Paris’ most famous museums. 

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what to see paris

Head along Winston Churchill Avenue until you get to the river; cross over the famous Pont Alexandre III bridge, admiring the columns with golden statues and the view over the water.

  1. Take a left once you’re over the bridge, and you’ll find yourself on the Seine Quayside. Keep going until you reach Parc Rives de Seine, an area popular with cyclists, particularly in the summer months
  2. Cross the river again when you get to Pont de la Concorde, one of the best-looking areas of the city. As you ride, you’ll come across the Louvre, Musee d’Orsay, and Jardin des Tuileries. Just after the Louvre, the river forks in two; turn right onto Pont Neuf so you can cross the river again.
  3. You’ll find yourself at lie de la Cite and you’ll see the famous Notre Dame Cathedral.
  4. When you’re finished admiring the Notre Dame, cross back over the river for the final time using Pont d’Arcloe. When you arrive back on the other bank, you’ll find yourself at Hotel de Ville de Paris, the end of this tour.

Things to Remember When Cycling in Paris

Paris is one of the most cycle-friendly cities in the world, so you should feel safe while you navigate around. That said, you should always be courteous to other road users and follow the rules. 

How to Recognise Paris’ Cycle Lanes

cycling route in paris

There are plenty of cycle lanes in the city thanks to its large cycling network. Paris is regularly adding more too, meaning it’s possible to use a bike to get just about anywhere and everywhere safely. 

The cycle lanes are marked with white lines on the ground, signs, and symbols.

If you are familiar with the road signs in most other European cities, you’ll have no problem recognizing them in Paris because France has signed up for the Vienna Convention on Road Signs and Signals. 

This includes easily recognizable standards like blue signs with white bicycle symbols.

If you want a map of all of Paris’ cycle lanes, an up-to-date version is available online, while the Geovelo smartphone app makes planning your routes a lot easier.

You can even use it to filter routes by length and steepness of the incline. If you can mount your phone to your bike, you can use the app on the go and it will give you instructions on where to go next.  

Rules for Cycling in Paris

Do not ride on pavements or in pedestrian-only areas. If you do, you’ll be liable for a fine.

You also need to make sure that your bike has reflectors on both the wheels and pedals, front and rear lights, a bell, and functioning brakes on both wheels. 

It’s not compulsory for adults to wear a helmet while they’re riding a bicycle, but it is still a good idea to wear one since you’re 44% more likely to survive a collision. 

paris by bicycle

Hiring a Bicycle in Paris

If you don’t want to take your own bike with you, there are plenty of places that you can hire one from while you’re there. 

Popular e-bike rental services like Jump are also available in the city, meaning you can just open the app to find the nearest one, unlock it with your phone, and cycle as far as you like.

Most conveniently, you don’t need to worry about where to return it. Just park it up and use your smartphone to end the ride. 

Jump’s e-bikes cost €1 to unlock and €0.15 per minute to use, though you should be aware that if you park the bike outside of the city center, Jump will charge you a fee of €50. This helps to ensure the service is available for as many people as possible. 

While you might not be reaching Tour de France speeds, you’ll certainly enjoy yourself cycling through Paris. 

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