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A Review on Paris Greeters Authentic Free Walking Tour in Paris

A Review on Paris Greeters Authentic Free Walking Tour in Paris

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Are you planning a trip to Paris and looking for things to do? For free walking tours, Paris Greeters is a fabulous choice! Below you can read my review on the amazing tour my family of 4 took with this lovely organization.
This post about free Paris walking tours was written by family travel expert Marcie Cheung and contains affiliate links which means if you purchase something from one of my affiliate links, I may earn a small commission that goes back into maintaining this blog.

Paris offers a whirlwind vacation with top attractions on both sides of the River Seine, beautiful architecture, historical landmarks, and much more. But it can be challenging to know where to start. Consider a free walking tour with Paris Greeters!

When it comes to free walking tours, Paris Greeters is the best. Their local tour guides work with you to plan an itinerary based on your family’s interests.

You could explore the Latin Quarter in the heart of Paris or one of the city’s suburbs.

Traveling to Paris as a family with young children, I knew I wanted to book a private tour that could accommodate us. Paris Greeters went above and beyond! Below, you’ll read my detailed review of one of the best walking tours in Paris.

Don’t have time to read a bunch of Paris blog posts and reviews? Here are some of our top picks for visiting Paris with kids.

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What is Paris Greeters?

Paris Greeters is an organization of volunteers passionate about sharing their city with visitors. The volunteers live all over Paris and its surrounding areas.

Their website has a spot to register for a free walking tour. Then, based on your information, they connect you with a volunteer.

A Review on Paris Greeters Authentic Free Walking Tour in Paris
Patrick pushed our stroller during this walking tour while chatting with my husband about the poets featured in this park in Boulogne.

But these aren’t skip-the-line tours of the Louvre Museum. Instead, it’s a great way to enjoy Paris from a more authentic perspective (and still see major landmarks, if you wish).

Volunteers are passionate about their amazing city. They’ll suggest walking tours in different neighborhoods while sharing all the intriguing facts along the way.

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    What Happens Before Your Tour

    A few weeks before our trip to Paris, I ran across a blog post about Paris Greeters. My husband and I are always looking for authentic experiences when traveling; this seemed the perfect way to do it.

    I filled out the online form on their website, noting that we’d have a baby and a 3-year-old with us. A few days later, Paris Greeters proposed a walking tour of Boulogne, a suburb of Paris.

    I had to Google it. This quiet neighborhood is known for 1930s Art Deco design. We excitedly confirmed the walking tour!

    We kept in touch with our volunteer, Patrick Lucard, until the day of our free tour. This was helpful for planning the rest of our trip itinerary.

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    Our Paris Greeters Walking Tour

    We later learned that our volunteer, Patrick, was the President of Paris Boulogne Greeters. This is a “sister” or affiliated association of Pais Greeters. And he was beyond fabulous!

    After we met him at the Michel Ange Auteuil Metro stop, he suggested we grab coffee like true Parisians. It was a great ice-breaker for our free walking tour!

    We headed across the street to the bar to sip a cappuccino. In talking, we discovered he had just returned from a trip to Seattle a few weeks prior.

    It was nice to see what he thought of our city before we explored it! It helped us trust Patrick, the way he found a common point of interest with us.

    A Review on Paris Greeters Authentic Free Walking Tour in Paris
    Playing at a Parisian park was a highlight for our 3-year-old. Photo Credit: Darren Cheung

    Visiting a Geniune Parisian Park

    Since we had our 3-year-old, Patrick thought we’d like to visit a neighborhood park in Boulogne. We’d brought a stroller, and Patrick offered to push our son around.

    This made the walk even more enjoyable! I wore our baby in our Tula baby carrier, which freed my husband up to take photos along the walking tour.

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    On our walk to the park, Patrick points out a vintage Art Nouveau “Metropolitan” sign by Hector Guimard. I’d seen this on a postcard but didn’t realize how rare it was to find. There are only two left in Paris!

    Then, he showed us the different styles of architecture in the neighborhood. He explained that the second floor was the most desired floor and often featured a balcony—that’s where the builder would live!

    A Review on Paris Greeters Authentic Free Walking Tour in Paris
    The highlight of the walk for me was talking with Patrick about Paris and life in general. Photo Credit: Darren Cheung

    The park was a really wonderful experience. We saw several nannies there with a handful of children. It was our first time in a park in Paris, and our son was ecstatic for the chance to run and play!

    Patrick and I sat on a bench and talked about life. He told me that when he travels around Europe, it’s about seeing great architecture and experiencing the culture.

    But he said that when he visits the United States, it’s like a dream vacation! I told him that we feel the same way when we visit Europe.

    We also discussed the importance of learning other languages and exposing our children to different cultures through travel.

    A Review on Paris Greeters Authentic Free Walking Tour in Paris
    We never would have explored the greenhouses had we not taken the Paris Greeters walking tour. Photo Credit: Darren Cheung

    We decided to continue our walking tour and “look at the fishies,” so we headed to a nearby greenhouse.

    Patrick told us this was a favorite spot to bring his daughters because it was never crowded. We only saw one person in the greenhouse, and she was sketching in a notebook.

    It was really beautiful to see the different plants and to see the fish. They had just pruned so we didn’t get to see as many flowers as we had hoped. But it was still very relaxing.

    We saw that it was raining outside, so we lingered a bit inside another greenhouse to stay warm and dry.

    A Review on Paris Greeters Authentic Free Walking Tour in Paris
    Exploring Hotel Molitor was an insider’s experience. Photo Credit: Darren Cheung

    Exploring the Hotel Molitor Paris

    Coming from Seattle, we never let a little rain interrupt our plans. But Patrick was quick to think on his feet and told us he had somewhere to show us.

    He brought us to the Hotel Molitor Paris. Originally a public swimming pool in the 1930s, they kept the Art Deco vibe when they turned it into a hotel.

    It was a stunning stop on our tour! It felt like the type of place where you could just relax and soak in the cool vibes.

    Patrick took us inside to show us the original 1930s pool, which was breathtaking. He also took us inside the spa area so we could see the indoor pool.

    Not only was it a great way to warm up and stay dry, but it was definitely somewhere we never would have seen without our guide.

    He rounded out the walking tour by showing us more Art Deco homes and the Rugby stadium on our way back to the Metro station. By the time our 3-hour tour ended, we really felt like we were saying goodbye to a family member.

    It was so much more than just a tour of a city.  My husband and I felt like we were in great hands.

    A Review on Paris Greeters Authentic Free Walking Tour in Paris
    Our Paris Greeters walking tour was a highlight of our trip to Paris. Photo Credit: Darren Cheung

    My Thoughts on Our Paris Greeters Tour

    When it comes to free walking tours, Paris Greeters is priceless! Our guide, Patrick, was thoughtful and passionate. He chose destinations we wouldn’t have seen as unknowing tourists in Paris.

    He immediately put us at ease, and it truly felt like we were exploring Boulogne with a family friend! And you could really tell that he thought about what a family would be able to do on a Paris tour.

    This was a highlight of our entire trip to Europe. I highly recommend Paris Greeters to anyone traveling to Paris. Whether you’re looking for quality free tour options or want a unique experience, this organization is an excellent choice.

    FAQ about Paris Walking Tours

    Can you just walk around Paris?

    One of the best ways to see Paris is on foot! You could easily walk across the city in a few hours. I suggest picking a neighborhood and spending at least a few hours there! For example, you could spend an entire afternoon walking down Champs Elysées. See the Arc de Triomphe, stop at a cafe, and shop at the stores along the avenue.

    What is the most walkable neighborhood in Paris?

    The most walkable neighborhoods in Paris are along the River Seine, especially if you want to skip the metro. Le Marais and the Latin Quarter are great for a mix of old and new attractions. Rue Cler is stunning. Spend your days shopping at romantic street markets with one of the most famous landmarks in the background—the Eiffel Tower!

    How much are the tours in Paris?

    Prices for tours in Paris range widely. However, if you want to save some money, I highly recommend Paris Greeters. They offer an authentic experience with local guides and half-day neighborhood tours. You’ll work with your local guide to plan a private walking tour that works for your party.

    Book the Best Free Walking Tours with Paris Greeters

    It’s guaranteed that you’ll have a great time when traveling to Paris. You might sometimes want exclusive tours, but this Paris Greeters experience was one for the books.

    When you’re looking for free walking tours, Paris Greeters is a cut above the rest. We cherished this opportunity to connect with a local Parisian and see Paris off the beaten path! Plus, we can go at our own pace.

    Of course, we loved exploring the main attractions of this amazing city, like the Eiffel Tower and the Notre Dame Cathedral. And no trip to Paris is complete without seeing the Luxembourg Gardens and the Louvre Pyramid!

    But sometimes, you want the authentic, down-to-earth experience that only a local can give you. Paris Greeters offers that. Plus, it’s a free walking tour! What’s better than that?

    Looking for more Paris travel resources? Check out my top Paris planning tips, best day trips from Paris by train, Paris vs London, Paris Instagram spots, coolest Paris hidden gems, whether it’s worth visiting Versailles with kids, things to do in Paris with teens, how to take cute Paris family photos, my kid-friendly Paris itinerary, tips for visiting Paris with kids, the best kid-friendly Paris tours, 2 days Paris itinerary, and the best things to do in Paris at night!

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    Bonita

    Monday 15th of May 2017

    This is a really cool way to explore Paris! Especially to a traveler who's never been to France! Thanks for the virtual tour !!!!

    marciecheung

    Tuesday 16th of May 2017

    It was super fun!

    Anita

    Sunday 14th of May 2017

    I love this Idea of Paris greeting tours. It would be great to try it myself some time. It must be a special feeling to be taken care of. Thanks for sharing!

    marciecheung

    Tuesday 16th of May 2017

    It would be awesome for solo travelers!

    Reebex | Recovering Hippie

    Sunday 14th of May 2017

    This walking tour sounds absolutely brilliant. I'm a big fan of taking a walking tour when I arrive in a new place, but they are usually in big groups and, although they can be fun and informative, they are sometimes a little impersonal. It sounds like Paris Greeters do a really good job and matching you with the right guide. This is definitely something I will look into when I visit Paris later this year.

    marciecheung

    Sunday 14th of May 2017

    Yes, look into it! I loved how personalized the tour was. And it went at a pace that worked for our family. Have an awesome trip!

    Sandy N Vyjay

    Sunday 14th of May 2017

    We never knew about Paris greeters and good we got a chance to read your post. We have been to Paris and have heard about walking tours but never thought how it would be. Now that you have introduced Paris greeters to us, we will make it a point to register and do the Paris walking tour. Your pics are incredible!

    marciecheung

    Sunday 14th of May 2017

    Thanks! Paris Greeters is a great program and I'm so glad we were able to try it out!

    Gracie Gill

    Friday 12th of May 2017

    This is something I would like to experience when I visit a different country! Aside from the famous tourist attractions, it's always good to be closer to the locals and for sure they have better places to show you. I hope they have something like that in different countries too. I used to tour my friends from different countries because they said they wanted to know more about the locals, but sometimes it'sexhausting. But the idea is great! Thank you for sharing this!

    marciecheung

    Friday 12th of May 2017

    Yes, I get exhausted showing people around Seattle. But, it is fun to see someone experience your city for the first time!

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