Your LivTours’ Private Paris Full Day Tour with River Cruise start when you meet your private expert guide near the iconic Moulin Rouge at the base of the Montmartre district. Opened in 1889, the same year Paris hosted the Universal Exposition, The Moulin Rouge is certainly one of the most iconic buildings of Paris and catered to more affluent gentlemen than the other cabaret venues inside the Montmartre district. The Moulin Rouge, a symbol of the changing times, was a reflection of the huge changes in society at the turn of the 19th to 20th centuries that saw the inventions of cameras, gramophones, and light bulbs change their everyday life.
Walking in the neighborhood behind the Moulin Rouge, the entire vibe changes from neon light Times Square to quaint cobble-stoned streets and two-story buildings reminiscent of its former status as a village. Attracting young artists like Renoir, Van Gogh, Picasso, and writers like Ernest Hemmingway due to its lower rents and bigger spaces. It was the place to live if you were an up-and-coming artist at the turn of the century. Your expert local guide will share with you lesser-known features of the neighborhood, like a hundred-year-old vineyard that still produces wine every year and the oldest cabaret venue in the city, Au Lapin Agile where greats like Edith Piaf performed. The venue was also featured in paintings by Picasso and Utrillo. Still, a thriving artists’ community, who perform regularly at the Place du Tertre which is featured as a key setting in the film Amelie.
Your tour continues to the highest point in the city where you can enjoy the most memorable views over Paris at the base of the Sacré-Cœur Basilica. The all-white basilica is often referred to as the meringue by locals, was built at the end of the 1800s, and sits at the top of Paris’ most bohemian neighborhood.
Your expert guide will accompany you to the infamous Louvre Museum. Enjoy priority access entrance tickets, skipping the often long lines, another way that LivTours allows you to maximize your time in Paris. The Louvre is a world-class museum holding over 35,000 works of art, with most of them on display year-round, having an expert guide by your side makes it easy to navigate to see the most important highlights including the marvelous Greek sculptures, like Venus de Milo, dramatic Delacroix paintings, and Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa.
ILE DE LA CITE
Once you have had your fill of the Louvre, you will have free time to recharge and find an authentic French lunch. Your guide will be happy to recommend a place to suit your preferences. Please note, lunch is not included in the price of the tour. Then, it is time to stroll across the river to visit the Île de la Cité, the bigger of the two islands in the Seine. One of your first stops will be the Place Dauphine, an elegant square in Paris, that might bring back memories if you have seen Woody Allen’s film Midnight in Paris. There is more to this square than appearing in a movie and your guide will share with you the stories from a thousand years ago that lead to its fame.
You’ll pass by the charming Sainte Chapelle and then hear darker tales from Paris’ past as you pass by the former prison of Paris. Used during the days of the French Revolution, you will hear about Marie Antoinette’s last days, which were spent here before she met her fate. Just around the corner, is France’s beloved Notre Dame Cathedral. Temporarily closed due to the massive fire in 2019, your guide will take you to see the untouched main facade, explain the church’s architecture and bring you up to date on the reconstruction of the Cathedral’s roof.
As your magical full-day Paris tour comes to a close, your guide will give you tickets for a relaxing Seine river cruise, which you can choose to take at sunset, or the next day. The floating visit will take you past the Conciergerie (former prison where Marie Antoinette was held); the Académie Française, home to the French language governing body; the Musée d’Orsay, now a museum holding Impressionistic art it was a former railway station; the Hôtel National des Invalides, dating back to the 17th century this still active hospital for injured or disabled war veterans; and, lastly, the monument built for the 1889 Universal Exposition, the famed Eiffel Tower. Certainly, the perfect way to end your full-day Paris tour.