Riding in central Paris is a thing of beauty. Bike share is everywhere and there are marked and divided paths throughout. Even when crossing roads cars are moving slowly and give way. In fact it’s ambling pedestrians that pose the greatest hazard.
We rode along the Seine under the Sun and enjoyed every minute. Even the bike tunnels are great, filled with street art – and a bit of relief in the shade.
If riding was great, the Louvre was not. We only decided to go to the Louvre because all our preferred choices were sold out. It was awful. Look, the art is wonderful, and the building amazing, but the place was choc-full of people shuffling along to get to the Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo. Really any sensible administrator would just put all the famous stuff in a separate museum and let people line up for selfies. Even avoiding the obvious stuff left you fighting the flow – it was pretty much my idea of hell.
So the Louvre was not a long visit, and we recovered with fresh orange juice in the Tuileries and another fabulous bike ride on a beautiful Summer day.
In the evening we caught the Metro north to Montmatre – the Metro was like the Louvre without the art. We wandered the cool streets of Montmatre and climbed the steps up towards the view. We had dinner while being serenaded by a man in a stripped shirt and beret and then walked round to Sacre Coeur to look out over the Paris rooftops.
Partly to avoid the metro, and partly just for fun, we rode bikes back to our hotel. Even on the back streets and main road there were excellent bike paths. And at the one dodgy intersection we crossed paths with the Paris Pride parade, which removed all cars from the equation but I did think I’d end up emerging from the mosh-pit of people with colorful angel wings on my back.