Instantly recognizable monuments? Check.
Incredible collections of masterpieces? Check.
Delicious food? Check.
In Paris, you’ll never run out of things to see or do. Whether you’re a history buff, foodie, or even a sports fan, the City of Love has something for everyone to love. The only downside is figuring out how to go everywhere during your vacation. Thankfully, with the Paris Big Bus tour, you can easily go from one landmark to another as much as you want. No need to buy pricey metro and bus tickets. Just sit back and relax on the bus and you’re guaranteed to see all there is to see!
1. What is it?
The Big Bus tour in Paris is a convenient tour that will take you to the city’s most iconic sights and more. Since you can hop on and off as much as you like, you can discover the City of Lights at your own pace. Craft your own itinerary: If you want to stay at the Louvre and admire works by da Vinci and more, just hop off and catch the next bus once you’re done.
It’s extra useful since the most popular attractions are quite far apart and Paris’ public transportation can be pricey and confusing to navigate. Plus, there’s also audio commentary available in 11 languages so you can learn about some of France’s most important historical landmarks while taking in the views from the open-top deck.
The price for the Big Bus tour in Paris depends on the type of tour you’ll choose. There are three options that differ in inclusions and validity:
The Classic Tour (€30.70) – For one day, you can explore Paris’ top landmarks like the Louvre, Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, and more aboard the double-decker bus. This is perfect for visitors who have limited time in the city. Children can join at a discounted price of €15.85.
The Premium Tour(€40.50) – No need to hurry for this 2-day hop-on, hop-off tour that visits 11 of Paris’ incredible attractions. Kids aged 4 to 12 are eligible for the discounted tickets worth €19.80.
The Deluxe Tour (€42.90) – Take it up a notch and go on a Seine River cruise on top of your bus tour to see the City of Lights by land and water! With a difference of only €2.40, it’s a no-brainer. Children can join in on the fun with discounted tickets worth € 21.05.
3. Route & Map
The Paris Big Bus tour route has 11 stops, each at a famous Parisian monument where you can take photos, learn about the local history, and shop for souvenirs. Here are all the details you need to know:
Operating hours: 10:00-18:00
Frequency: Every 30 minutes
Starting point: Eiffel Tower
Tour stops and highlights: Arc de Triomphe – Trocadéro – Eiffel Tower – Hotel des Invalides – Louvre – Musée d’Orsay – Notre Dame – Champs-Elysées – Grand Palais
For the Deluxe Tour option, which includes a cruise along the Seine River, the information you need to know is down below:
Seine River Cruise by Bateaux Parisiens:
Cruise availability: 1 July – 31 August
Operating hours: Daily from 12:00-21:00
Frequency: Every 60 minutes
Starting point: Bateaux Parisiens, Port de la Bourdonnais, 75007 Paris (near bus stop #1: Eiffel Tower)
4. Attractions to See
Here’s just a sampling of the 11 iconic attractions you’ll be able to see on the Big Bus tour in Paris:
Is it really a trip to Paris without a visit to the Iron Lady herself? During the tour, you’ll have the opportunity to marvel at the tower from afar or up close, so there are plenty of chances to take photos. You can even go up the tower yourself, grab a meal there, and enjoy the Parisian skyline from the ultimate Parisian icon. Or, just visit the gardens (it’s free!) and take in the front-row view.
Klook tip: Make sure to stop by at sundown to see the Eiffel Tower sparkle! It happens at the start of every hour for five minutes after sunset until 1 am.
Head to the Notre-Dame Cathedral to see one of the oldest and most stunning churches in the world. While you may not be able to go inside the famed church after the 2019 fire, you can still admire its intricate French Gothic architecture from outside and snap a photo of its unblemished west facade. Once you’re finished, you can visit the famous Shakespeare and Company bookstore right across the street.
As the world’s biggest museum, the Louvre is one of Paris’ can’t-be-missed attractions. While the glass pyramid outside is iconic in itself, the best sights are inside where you’ll see the most famous painting in the world, Mona Lisa, along with other masterpieces like the Venus de Milo and Winged Victory of Samothrace. You’ll also find French Crown Jewels and pieces of art from Ancient Egypt, Asia, and the U.S.A.
Arc de Triomphe
Did you know that you can climb up the Arc de Triomphe? Hop off the bus and go through the underground entrance at Champs-Élysées to reach the top of the arc—but be prepared to walk up narrow, spiral staircases! Enjoy unobstructed views of the Paris cityscape as you see the Eiffel Tower, La Défense, Sacré-Cœur, and more. Then, head to the ground floor to admire the sculptures of the arc and the inscriptions detailing the French military’s triumphant battles.
Feel like a king (or queen) when you visit the opera house’s sophisticated and grand interior that was built for Emperor Napoleon III. Famously known as the setting for Gaston Leroux’s 1910 novel, The Phantom of the Opera, Palais Garnier embodies opulence and grandeur. Revel in the golden details of the interior, snap photos of the Grand Staircase, or stay and watch a performance.
5. What else is good to know?
The Big Bus tour in Paris offers audio commentary as it travels from one site to another. It’s available in 11 languages: Chinese, English, Spanish, Arabic, Russian, Portuguese, Japanese, German, Korean, French, and Italian.
To get real-time bus times, routes, and a digital map, download the free Big Bus Tours app on Google Play or the Apple Store.
COVID-19-related restrictions have eased across France. Masks or vaccine certificates are no longer required to visit venues but they’re still recommended.