This is not a sponsored post. I am in no way affiliated with Fat Tire Bike Tours. I just really like them. All of the statements regarding them are my own opinion.
There are a few things that I would highly recommend to anyone visiting Paris.
- Get ice cream from Berthillon.
- Eat at Aki Boulanger.
- See Olivier Giraud’s one man show How to Become Parisian in One Hour?. Hands down the funniest show I have ever seen. Like laugh-out-loud-stomach-hurting-from-laughing-too-much-tears-nearly-streaming-down-your-face funny.
- Get a crepe from a street vendor. And remember it’s one crepe, two crepe. Not one crepe, two crepes.
- Take a biking tour of Versailles.
You may think, biking tour? That doesn’t sound like much fun.
Oh, but you would be very, very wrong. It was one of the best experiences on our trip.
You meet up at the Fat Tire Bike Tour office in Paris and then take a short walk to the train station.
Once in Versailles we got our bikes at a little storage area not too far from the Versailles open market. Going from the storage area to the market was a little scary for me. Mostly because I hadn’t ridden a bike in over 15 years. And I was super afraid of getting hit by a car. But I made it to the market fine and only nearly fell off my bike like three times.
Once at the market our tour guide, Andre (the most awesome tour guide EVER), instructed us on where to find really good breads, cheeses, wines, etc. After a little shopping we all gathered our goods, packed them on our bikes, and were on our way again.
Now, you might think riding in a big group would be a little difficult. And it was. Buuuut, we learned three things that helped make it easier.
- The first thing you learn to do is DOMINATE the road as a group. Think along the lines of the Spartans in the movie 300.
- Next you learn the palm of power. This is where you extend your arm and hold out your palm to the cars as you pass them by. The people in the cars will do one of three things: 1) Laugh 2) Honk/Shout obscenities or 3) Give you the finger.
- In the case of the last thing, you are instructed to give them a finger back. But not the same finger. You give them the finger of disdain, in which you shake your index finger at them and shake your head at the same time.
The grounds of Versailles are very beautiful. Huge, but beautiful. There is no way we would have been able to cover the same amount of ground just by walking.
After riding around for a bit and stopping along the way to learn more about Versailles, we stopped by a part of the Grand Canal that faced the palace for a picnic. It was very relaxing. The one thing that would have made it even better would have been hammocks.
After lunch we took a short ride to the palace itself and got to tour it for a couple of hours. If you’re not a fan of big crowds, you may not enjoy this part so much. Still, Versailles is the epitome of opulence & excessive indulgence that must not be missed.
If you only have time to do ONE tour in Paris, this is the one to do. Andre was ah-mazing. He was very knowledgeable and made everyone feel welcome. If we lived in Paris, I would totally want to be friends with him.
So go. Do the Fat Tire Bike Tour of Versailles. You will not regret it.