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What you will do
The municipality has identified 11 "smart and comfy" cycling routes to discover Paris by bike. Our itinerary will use parts of no less than 6 of those routes to compose a grand tour of the city's central quarters.
The total distance will be approximately 17.6 miles, so it will take between 2 hours (for the fastest) and 3 hours to cover it, pauses notwithstanding. So be sure to have at least half a day available to complete the whole tour - of course the various possible visits available may (and probably will) extend that time.
On the map you'll find (at the highest zoom levels, so please zoom in if you don't see them) all Vélib stations (Vélib is Paris' bike-sharing system) and, provided you have an internet connection, current availability of both bikes and bike stands for each station. This will allow you to modulate your itinerary and better plan the breaks you'll take.
Step by step
- We start at the Champ de Mars : a Vélib station is located at the beginning of Octave-Gréard avenue, to the West. Another is at the end of Rapp avenue, to the East. Should you reach the Eiffel Tower with the subway, the closest station is Bir-Hakeim (line 6). 1
- Find de la Bourdonnais avenue and turn left towards the embankments, then right into the Quai Branly. 2
- Next, the Quai d'Orsay will lead you up to the stunning Alexandre-III bridge, with a view on both the Grand Palais and the Petit Palais. Then head south to the Invalides. You'll also find Rodin museum alongside the boulevard des Invalides. 3
- Continue on du Montparnasse boulevard and, instead of going to the Railway Station and the famous Tower of Montparnasse, take de Rennes street. 4
- Now reach Saint-Germain boulevard to the East, from Saint-Sulpice through Bonaparte street and, turning right, du Four street. Saint-Jacques street and the next stop will be on your left after the Square de Cluny. 5
- Continue along Saint-Germain boulevard then take de Sully bridge up to the right bank of the Seine. 6
- The Quai des Célestins on your left will take you to Saint-Paul street. Take it to the right towards Saint-Antoine street. Turn right into it also, then make a turn left up to the Place des Vosges. 7
- Go back to Saint-Antoine street and head West. Continue into de Rivoli street in the continuity. 8
- After the Tower of Saint-Jacques, take de Sébastopol boulevard to the right up to de Turbigo street. Make a sharp turn left and reach Etienne-Marcel street. 9
- Before reaching the Place des Victoires, take du Louvre street to the right then Montmartre street in the same general direction, after a brief passage into d'Aboukir street. 10
- Once getting to the Grands Boulevards, turn left into Montmartre boulevard then Haussmann boulevard in the continuity. 11
- You'll then get to Saint-Augustin. Take de Laborde street, north of the church, to the West. 12
- Turn left into de Mirosmesnil street. You'll get to the Palais de l'Elysée, the house of the French Presidency, then head into de Marigny street, cross the Elysian Fields, and reach the Grand Palais. 13
- Get to the banks again. Follow the Cours de la Reine westbound up to the Pont de l'Alma. There, head northwest and take du Président-Wilson avenue towards the Trocadéro. 14