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Seine River Cruises in Paris: How to Choose the Best Seine Cruise Boat Tour

Last updated: February 17, 2024 - Written by Jessica Norah 103 Comments

A Seine river cruise is a very popular way to see Paris, and one we always recommend to visitors to the city. These short river cruises allow you to take in many of the highlights of the city—the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, the Musée d’Orsay, Notre Dame Cathedral, etc.—as you float along the Seine River.

Many of Paris’s most famous and important buildings, bridges, and attractions can be seen from the river. The river viewpoint also allows you to gain some good insight into the city’s history, evolution, and architecture. In fact, the banks of the Seine in Paris were inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991.

We have taken many Seine river cruises over the years on multiple visits to Paris with a lot of different companies, and we always recommend one to friends and family when visiting Paris.

However, deciding on the right cruise may be difficult as there are several companies that provide similar tours along the Seine River.

In this article, we’ll give you the details on the most popular sightseeing boat tours in the City of Light and help you decide which one might be best for you. We’ll also provide you with a list of Seine dinner cruises and companies offering private Seine river cruises for those looking for a special evening out. We’ll also let you know which ones we chose and why for our own Seine river cruise experiences.

Paris Seine river cruises boat

Table of Contents:

Seine River Cruises: Main Paris Sightseeing Boat Companies

There are a lot of similarities in many of the Seine river boat cruises that offer larger scale cruises along the Seine.

First, most Seine cruises last about an hour in duration and stop and end at the same point unless otherwise noted. They also all complete approximately the same circuit although you can check for the exact map for each by going to the companies’ websites. Most companies operate sightseeing river cruises in Paris year-round.

In addition to regular sightseeing cruises, the majority of these companies also operate dinner cruises on the Seine (as well as other meals and special event cruises) if you are looking for a meal on board.

While you can buy tickets for most cruises the same day in-person near the dock, you may be able to save money by purchasing in advance. Often tickets are valid for 3 months to 1 year following purchase allowing you to choose the time and date of your Seine cruise. If you purchase a ticket or voucher online, be sure to print it out and take it with you to claim your ticket at the dock.

Some of the companies offer cruises seasonally whereas others operate year-round. Those that operate year-round often offer less frequent cruises in the low season. High season is generally from April to September and low season is from October to March.

Below we summarize the departure points, type of commentary or narration provided, cost of tickets, how to buy the tickets, and other points of interest about each company that offers Seine cruises. This list is in alphabetical order: 

Seine cruise boat

1. Bateaux Mouches Seine Cruise

This is the oldest company operating cruise boats on the Seine River, starting service after World War II, and these boats have become somewhat of a symbol of Paris. Bateaux Mouches has some of the biggest boats which are easy to spot because they are big, double-decker open-top boats with orange seats.

The sightseeing cruises last approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes.

Bateaux Mouches Seine cruise river Paris France

Departure Points(s)

Leaves from Pont de l’Alma (right bank) in the 8th arrondissement.

Pre-recorded narration is provided in several languages, including English, over the boat speaker system. They also provide printed handouts in 22 languages.

Pricing & Tickets

Current prices (as of June 2023): adults are 15 euros, children age 4 to 12 are 6 euros, and children under age 4 are free.

You can buy tickets online (use our link for a small discount) , by phone, or at the dock. If you purchase your ticket online, you can collect your ticket before boarding at the Pont de l’Alma at the Compagnie des Bateaux-Mouches kiosk. You will just need to present your transaction number and proof of booking.

Accessibility

Step-free access is available and the bottom floor of the boats is wheelchair accessible. The boat configurations vary, but there are approximately 10 stairs to access the second floor and it is not accessible to wheelchairs.

Access to toilets on board the boats requires navigating stairs, but there are wheelchair-accessible toilets available near the docking area. Priority access for disabled guests is available.

Other Points

  • Website: https://www.bateaux-mouches.fr
  • Also provide lunch, dinner, and special events cruises.

These boats are probably the most popular on the Seine as they are the biggest and you don’t usually need a reservation to get on them. However, this makes them very popular with tourist groups so be prepared to share the boat with hundreds of other visitors.

The open-top is great in good weather and provides unobstructed better views than some of the other boats operated by other companies without the extra deck. However, in bad weather you’ll be forced into the glassed-in bottom half of the boat.

Narration is provided but it can be difficult to hear if the boat is busy or the weather is bad. 

2. Bateaux Parisiens Seine Cruise

Bateaux Parisiens have a large fleet of medium-sized boats. Most of the boats they use for sightseeing cruises have lower enclosed decks and an upper uncovered deck. This is probably the second most popular company on the Seine.

The sightseeing cruises last approximately 1 hour.

Bateaux Parisiens Paris Seine river cruises boat

Leaves from the Port de la Bourdonnais (near the Eiffel Tower, on the left bank) in the 7th arrondissement -OR- from Quai de Montebello (near the Notre Dame) in the 5th arrondissement.

If you depart from near the Eiffel Tower , narration is provided through individual audio devices available in 14 languages on the lower part of the boat. A live guide is also available for questions.

If you sit on the upper part of the boat, the boat has recently started asking customers to download a free audioguide app on their smartphones rather than giving out individual audio devices. The app commentary is available in multiple languages, but you will need a smartphone and set of headphones or earbuds to listen.

If you depart from near Notre Dame then there is live commentary provided by a live guide in 3 languages (including French and English).

Current prices (as of June 2023) are 18 euros for adults, 9 euros for children age 4-13, and children under age 4 are free. 

Tickets can be purchased online , by phone, or at the ticket offices near the boats.

** DISCOUNT : If you plan to depart from the Eiffel Tower, you can save an extra 2 euros off your ticket price for any trips departing from the Eiffel Tower by booking your ticket online here .**

Note for PARIS PASS holders: Currently, a free Bateaux Parisiens Seine river cruise is included as part of the Paris Pass . Check the website or guidebook for most up-to-date info but Paris Pass holders can currently collect their free ticket by presenting their Paris Pass at the ticket window at Pier 3 at the Eiffel Tower departure port.

Read our review of the Paris Pass for more information, and take a look at our suggested 3 day Paris itinerary that includes this ride.

Step-free access via a ramp is available at the Eiffel Tower stop, and the bottom floor of the boats is wheelchair accessible. Access to toilets on board the boats requires going up and down stairs, but there are wheelchair-accessible toilets available at Le Bistro Parisien, the company’s restaurant near their Eiffel Tower dock.

  • Website: https://www.bateauxparisiens.com/
  • They offer lunch, dinner, and special events cruises. They also offer a special family-oriented cruise (offered in French only) that includes music and children’s activities.

If you choose Bateaux Parisiens and don’t have a strong preference regarding boarding location, I would choose the Eiffel Tower departure point as you’ll save with our discount , making this what we think are some of the best value Seine River cruises available.

If you plan to sit on top, be sure to download the cruise app onto your smartphone and bring your headphones or earbuds if you want to listen to the commentary.

3. Batobus Seine Cruise (well, sort of…)

These are hop-on/hop-off boats that make a circuit with 9 separate stops, all near major tourist destinations (e.g., Notre Dame, Eiffel Tower, Louvre). The Batobus is not really intended for a sightseeing cruise but can still be a good economical choice if you also want to use the Batobus for transportation.

If you use the boat to do a sightseeing tour, the full circuit takes about 2 hours. It stops about every 15 minutes.

Batobus Seine Cruise

Departure Point(s)

Boats leave from 9 different stops near the following sites: St-Germain-des-Prés, Notre Dame, Jardin des Plantes, Hôtel de Ville, Louvre, Champs-Elysées, Eiffel Tower, Musée d’Orsay, and Beaugrenelle.

The boats stop at each stop every 20 to 25 minutes depending on the season.

There is no narration during these boat tours as they are designed as a boat taxi service rather than an actual cruise. Staff members are on board, however, and can answer questions in both English and French.

For a 1-day pass current prices (as of November 2022) for adult passes (age 16+) are 20 euros and child (age 3 to 15) passes are 10 euros. Children under age 3 ride for free. For a 2-day pass, adult passes are 22 euros and child passes are 11 euros.

Tickets can be purchased online , at any of the 9 Batobus stops, tourist information offices, or at the Paris L’Open Tour Boutique (3 rue Auber, 75009 Paris).

Step-free access via a ramp is available only at the Eiffel Tower stop, and the bottom floor of the boats is wheelchair accessible. However, many of the other stops require steps or have cobbled walkways. There are no toilets on board these boats. Wheelchair accessible toilets are available near their Eiffel Tower dock.

I would not recommend Batobus for those in a wheelchair unless you plan to stay on the boat for a round trip ride as only the Eiffel Tower stop is easy to access for wheelchair users. Since there is no guided commentary on board, you are probably better off choosing another boat company.

Other Notes

  • Website: https://www.batobus.com/
  • There are no toilets on board these boats.

While these boats are meant to function as water buses they can still be a good choice for some views of Paris from the river. For some people who don’t want to use the bus system or metro, these can be an especially great and economical option.

For instance, a 1 day pass allows for unlimited transportation for an entire day and you can use the Batobus as a bus during the day and then sit back and enjoy the full circuit at night. Just note that if crowded these boats can get quite hot in the summer heat, but can be nice and warm on cool days as they are heated.

Please note that depending on where you want to go, there may be some walking involved to get there from the port stop. For instance, the stop closest to the Eiffel Tower requires a 15-minute walk to get to the monument from the boat stop.

4. Canauxrama Seine Cruise 

Canauxrama is one of the top companies for providing canal tours around Paris , but they also provide scenic tours along the Seine River as well as a combined canal and river cruise. The Canuaxrama boats vary a bit but all have a closed bottom deck and an open-top deck.

The main Seine River sightseeing cruises are 2 hours long and combine a canal cruise with a Seine River cruise.

Seine boat cruise

There are a number of departure points depending on which cruise you take, so it is important to check which is right for the cruise you choose.

Some cruises, specifically the combined Seine River and Canal St. Martin cruises for example, departs from the intersection of Rue Jean Poulmarch and Quai de Valmy.

Specific Seine River cruises leave from Ile de la Cité near 19 Quai de l’horloge in the 1st arrondissement.

Canal cruises leave from the intersection of Rue Jean Poulmarch and Quai de Valmy .

Live narration on board by guide in French and English.

The 2 hour combined Seine River and Canal St. Martin cruise tickets are currently (as of June 2023) 22 euros for adults, 10 euros for children age 4-12, and free for children under 4. 

It is recommended that reservations should be made in advance for all cruises.

Tickets can be purchased online in advance , or at one of their two ticket offices at the Marina Arsenal or Bassin de la Villette.

Access to the Canauxarama boat boarding points require going up or down several steps and sometimes cobbled walkways. There are also steps (up to 6 steps) on some of the boats that passengers would need to be able to climb.

There are no ramps for wheelchair accessibility. However, some people with greater mobility who are in manual wheelchairs and have a person accompanying them to help them navigate the stairs and walkways, may be able to do these cruises. Mobility scooters are usually too heavy to be moved onto the boats.

There are no wheelchair-accessible toilets on board or near where the boats are docked.

  • Website: https://www.canauxrama.com/en/
  • The cruise described is generally only offered in the evening.
  • Snacks and drinks (including alcohol) are available for purchase at the onboard bar.
  • The company offers a wide variety of different types of cruises that include the Seine as well as a number of other waterways (mainly canals) in or near Paris, however, some of these cruises are not available year round.
  • If you are interested in learning more about taking a Paris canal tour, check out our experience taking a Canauxrama cruise on the Canal Saint-Martin .

Canauxrama is better known for its canal cruises than Seine cruises; however, the company was purchased by Vedettes du Pont Neuf in 2007 which operates Seine cruise boats. If you are looking for a longer cruise (1.5 hours and longer) that does not include dinner, this is a good price.

The cruises that combine the Seine River and Canal St. Martin includes the unique experience of learning a bit about locks as the boat passes through a lock as transitions between the canal and the Seine River. Many people also appreciate the option to purchase snacks or drinks during the cruise. 

However, if you are looking for just a 1-hour, less expensive tour of the Seine, try another company. The longer cruises may be too long for younger children.

Also be sure to note the departure points and arrival points for the cruises as some leave from central Paris near the Notre-Dame Cathedral whereas others leave from the 12th arrondissement. Some cruises also do not have the same start and finish points. The Port de Paris-Arsenal is a bit further from the center of Paris than most of the other companies, but this may end up being great for those staying closer to the 12th arrondissement.

Another option if you are interested in combining a Seine River cruise and Canal Saint-Martin cruise is this 2.5 hour cruise with Paris Canal that includes a 1-hour Seine River cruise and then 1.5 hour canal ride. It departs from near the Musée d’Orsay (ends at Parc de la Villette).

5. Vedettes de Paris Seine Cruise

Vedettes de Paris operates smaller sized boats along the Seine River. The boat configurations differ a bit but each holds approximately 250 people for the regular Seine cruises.

The regular sightseeing cruises are 1 hour in length. They also offer short 30 minute stopover cruises that go between the Eiffel Tower and Notre-Dame Cathedral, as well as longer round-trip cruises that last approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes.

The company also offers a special family-friendly cruise that is geared specifically to children and families.

Seine cruise river boat

Boats for the 1 hour cruise leave from Port de Suffren (near Eiffel Tower) in the 7th arrondissement.

Most boats now include an audio guide that will play in several languages including Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, and Spanish. But some boats still have live narration on-board by guides in French and English on some cruises.

The 1-hour non-stop Discovery sightseeing cruise is currently (as of June 2023) 20 euros for adults, 9 euros for children age 4-11, and free for children under 4. 

There is also an evening aperitif cruise , including a choice of a glass of wine (€24.5) or glass of champagne (€29). It’s also available without a drink for €20.

There is also a 1-hour family cruise offered that is geared to children and families, with a live guide in both French and English.

Tickets can be booked in advance online here , or purchased at the Port de Suffren port office.

Access to the Vedettes de Paris boats are now wheelchair accessible since they got a new pontoon platform in 2020. Those in wheelchairs can now embark and disembark with step-free access. On board, passengers can sit in a regular seat or move around the boat in their own wheelchair.

Wheelchair-accessible toilets are available on board the boat and in the boarding area. There is a dedicated disabled parking space.

  • Website: https://www.vedettesdeparis.fr/
  • Paris de Vedettes offers dinner and themed cruise options with snacks. They also offer a special children’s cruise.
  • Snacks and drinks (including alcohol) are available for purchase onboard. You can also eat at the affiliated seasonal restaurant near the boat dock called Le Cafe des Vedettes. Sometimes there is a special deal if you combine a menu and a sightseeing cruise.
  • The boat configurations differs depending on the boat, but all appear to have some indoor and outdoor seating. You can see some photos of each boat on the website.

Paris de Vedettes offers pretty much the same standard 1-hour cruise of the Seine as most of the other companies; however their boats are smaller than many of the other companies.

Boats with top decks allow for better viewing and pictures, but during cold weather everyone will be forced into the covered spaces. Live narration can be difficult to hear, especially near the engine and on top deck if crowded.

6. Vedettes du Pont Neuf Seine Cruise

Les Vedettes du Pont Neuf operates a small fleet of small and medium sized boats and have been operating tourist cruises since the 1960’s. The company offers some of the least expensive Seine River cruises. 

The basic sightseeing cruises are 1 hour in length.

Paris Seine cruise boat

Boats leave from the Square du Vert Galant near the Pont Neuf on the tip of the Île de la Cité (within walking distance of Notre Dame)

Narration is provided by live guides who give commentary in both French and English. You can also download the company’s free app that provides commentary in French, English, Spanish, Italian, German and Portuguese.

The website says the tickets (as of June 2023) are regularly 15 euros for adults and 9 euros for children 4-12. However, they often have a discount if you purchase the tickets online from their website . 

Tickets can be purchased online or at the port in person before the cruise.

The Vedettes du Pont Neuf boats have a ramp for access and can accommodate step-free access and passengers with wheelchairs and mobility scooters. The access ramp is located a little further beyond the stairs and staff can help assist in finding the best place to board and exit.

However, it is advised that you call in advance before booking if you need the ramp to ensure access on your planned date of travel.

There are no wheelchair accessible toilets on board or near where the boats are docked.

  • Website: http://www.vedettesdupontneuf.com/
  • Two of the boats currently have two decks with an open upper deck, but all boats allow for open-air and inside covered seating.
  • Vedettes du Pont Neuf bought Canauxrama in 2007, so you may see boats with signage from both companies.
  • The company now offers lunch and dinner cruises as well

If you are looking for the cheapest Seine River tickets, Vedettes du Pont Neuf is probably the best choice if you take advantage of their online deals. They also offer a great central location if you are going to be near Notre Dame.

If you choose this company, take some time to explore the Square du Vert Galant before or after your cruise as it can be a peaceful little green patch on the tip of the island.

Live narration is provided by real guides; however, both sound quality and guide quality can vary. You also have the option to download the commentary in advance and listen to it during your trip with your own smartphone and headphones.

7. Bateaux de Paris Seine Cruise

Bateaux de Paris is the newest company to offer regular Seine River cruises. Although the company primarily does private events, one of its smaller boats is used for seasonal tourist sightseeing cruises. The boat is one of the smallest boats offering regular cruises and easy to spot with its bright orange color.

The company only operates cruises between April and September and does not offer them daily.

The sightseeing cruises are 1 hour and 15 minutes long. They also offer shorter one-way cruises and cruises that include stopovers at the Eiffel Tower.

Seine River boat cruises Bateaux de Paris Insolite boat

Leaves from near the Pont Saint-Michel (12 Quai des Orfèvres) in the 1st arrondissement in Paris.

No narration or commentary is offered on the basic cruise. However, you can add a handheld audioguide with commentary for 3 euros.

Current prices (as of June 2023): adults are 15 euros, children age 4 to 12 are 7 euros, and children under age 4 are free.

Tickets are also available for half cruises and cruises that do stopovers at the Eiffel Tower.

You can buy tickets online . Be sure to bring your booking confirmation to the cruise departure point.

Boat access requires being able to climb up and down a set of stairs so you need to be at least somewhat mobile to do the ride. There are approximately 30 steps from the dock to the boat. For those who can handle the steps, wheelchairs and walkers can be accommodated on the boat and there is a wheelchair-accessible toilet aboard the boat.

  • Website: https://www.bateauxdeparis.net/
  • Snacks and drinks are available for purchase on board the boat
  • Sightseeing cruises only operate between April and September

Bateaux de Paris is the newest company to begin operating regular sightseeing tourist cruises on the Seine. It currently has only one boat that offers these cruises and it only operates seasonally.

The boat is one of the smaller boats on the Seine and also one of the least known, so it can be a good one if you are looking for a cruise with fewer people. The prices, if you don’t want the optional commentary, are some of the lowest.

The boat is covered on top but open on the sides to allow for good viewing. Because the chairs are set up facing one direction, we’d definitely recommend taking the full cruise so you get a chance to fully see both sides of the river bank. You can also walk along the deck.

If you want commentary during the cruise, you can hire the optional audioguide. We recommend bringing along your own headphones or earphones so you can better listen to the commentary.

Seine River Dinner Cruises in Paris

If you are looking for a special way to experience Paris, you may want to consider a Seine River dinner cruise. Many visitors want to see Paris at night from the river while having dinner on a cruise.

These cruises typically take place on boats that have a special glass enclosed restaurant area, so you can watch the scenery but are protected from the wind and rain. Some of the cruises are only for those dining onboard and some also carry regular sightseeing guests as well.

In addition to dinner cruises, some cruise companies offer brunch, lunch, and special themed cruises that also serve food. During holidays (e.g., Christmas, New Year’s, Valentine’s Day, Bastille Day), you’ll find a number of special cruises and menus being offered. The cost of a meal cruise generally ranges from about 50 € to 200 € per person. Lunch and brunch cruises are usually less expensive than dinner cruises and specialty themed cruises.

Some Seine River cruises packages are sold that include a Seine River cruise plus other attractions such as a visit to the Eiffel Tower , a private car tour, or the Moulin Rouge . These can be group experiences or, more commonly, private experiences. For example this evening tour (choice of dinner at Eiffel Tower or on the cruise) includes a Seine dinner cruise, Eiffel Tower visit, and Moulin Rouge show.

Note that almost all the cruises can accommodate vegetarians. But if you have a more specialized dietary preferences or allergies (e.g., gluten-free, vegan, etc.), you will want to check in advance to make sure it can be accommodated.

There are over a dozen companies offering Seine River cruises with dinner, but we’ll provide a list of some of the best-rated ones to help you narrow down your search. Be sure to read recent customer reviews to find the one that is the best cruise for you. We also have a complete guide to our favourite Seine River dinner cruises to help you choose one.

Seine River Lunch Cruises

If you’d rather have a meal in the daytime (better for sightseeing), there are several Seine lunch cruises to choose from, here are the ones we’d recommend checking out:

  • This 2 hour lunch cruise by Bateaux Parisiens offers 3-course à-la-carte meal (choice of dishes), live music, wine and coffee, and choice to upgrade food and drink options. Vegetarian option available. Cruise departs from Port de la Bourdonnais (near Eiffel Tower).
  • This 2 hour lunch cruise aboard La Marina de Paris offers a 3-course à-la-carte lunch  and coffee aboard boats with large panoramic windows for great views. Wine package (“drinks package) can be added for extra 10 euros per person. Vegetarian options available. Departs from Port Solferino (near the Musée d’Orsay).
  • This 1.5 hour Sunday champagne brunch cruise is provided on Captaine Fracasse which is a company that specializes in meal cruises on the Seine. Brunch includes a mix of sweet (e.g., croissant, pain au chocolat , apple turnover, crepes, fruit) and savory items (e.g., eggs Benedict) that are freshly made on board to eat while enjoying the scenery . A 1/2 bottle of Champagne plus fruit juice and hot drinks (coffee, tea, hot chocolate) are also included. Only available on Sundays. Departs from Ile aux Cygnes, just off Bir-Hakeim bridge (near Eiffel Tower).

Seine River Dinner Cruises

Dinner is the most popular time to eat on a Seine River cruise and there are a lot of options out there. Here are the ones we’d recommend checking out:

  • This dinner cruise by Bateaux Mouches is approximately 2 hours and 15 minutes long and provides a 4-course meal and live music. Two menu choices offered with 1 glass of champagne and 1/2 bottle of wine per person. Vegetarian option available. Smart dress code enforced. Wheelchair accessible. Tours depart from Port de la Conférence (5 minute walk from Pont de l’Alma).
  • The well-rated dinner cruises by Bateaux Parisiens offer different cruise lengths, seating options, and menus (choice of dishes) across different price points. There is an early evening cruise that is 1 hour and 15 minutes (least expensive option) and a longer evening cruise that is 2.5 hours long that includes live music. Vegetarian option available. Smart casual dress code. Cruise departs from Port de la Bourdonnais (near Eiffel Tower).
  • This 2 hour dinner cruise aboard La Marina de Paris offers a 3-course à-la-carte dinner with option to add a glass of champagne and 1/2 bottle of wine per person. Vegetarian options available. Departs from Port de Solferino, 1 rue de la Légion d’Honneur 75007 (near the Musée d’Orsay). We have done this dinner cruise and enjoyed it.
  • This 2 hour dinner cruise by Captaine Fricasse offers a 3-course meal that is freshly cooked onboard the boat. Plant based menu available on request. Upgrades are available to add Champagne and drinks to the reservation or can order from the beverage menu. Tours depart from Île aux Cygnes, middle of the Bir-Hakeim bridge in the 15th arrondissement. We really enjoyed this dinner cruise when we did it.
  • This 1 hour 45 minute dinner cruise by Paris en Scène serves a 3 course dinner (choice of main) in a casual bistro-like setting with all dinner chairs facing windows for a good view. Meals are freshly prepared on board. Champagne and wine options available. Vegetarian option available. Cruises  depart from Île aux Cygnes, middle of the Bir-Hakeim bridge in the 15th arrondissement.

Paris dinner cruise Seine river boat dinner cruise

Seine River Cruises: Private Boat Cruises

Most visitors to Paris want to join one of the regularly scheduled group Seine river boat cruises from one of the companies above. However, if you are looking for a special private or semi-private Seine cruise, this can also be arranged.

Most of the previously mentioned companies offer either a semi-private cruise option (e.g., a private area, restaurant, room, or terrace of a boat) or a fully private cruise option (an entire boat just for the exclusive use or you and your group).

Private Seine river cruises are great options for special celebrations, weddings, marriage proposals, large families, holiday parties, tour groups, or corporate travel events. Meals, drinks, and entertainment can also be arranged on most semi-private and private Seine cruises.

Costs for a fully private cruise generally start at about 200 € for an hour for 2 persons or a family and can go well above 2,000 € depending on the duration and type of cruise experience you want.

Here is a list of companies that offer semi-private or private boat tours along the Seine. First, here are those companies which specialize in private Seine cruises which are probably the best fit for those looking for a private experience as a couple, family, or small group.

  • Lakana Paris Cruise – This company offers a 2.5 hour private boat cruise on the Seine for up to 4 guests. It is small company run by Gaël and Raphaël. This is the private cruise company Laurence and I have personally used and can recommend. Note that the cruise departs from outside central Paris (easily accessible from central Paris by bus and metro).
  • Green River Cruises – This company offers boats that can accommodate 1 to 11 persons, and have set prices for cruises from 1 hour to 3 hours in duration. This is perfect for couples, families, and small groups. 
  • River Limousine – This company offers private boat rides in a custom-designed Venetian boat for small groups of 1 to 6 persons. Perfect for couples and families. 

The rest of the cruise companies (most of which also offer regular sightseeing cruises) specialize in renting for private hires for larger groups, weddings, and corporate events.

  • Bateaux Mouches – This famous Seine river boat company offers a variety of private hire options for up to 350 guests for personal or corporate events.
  • Bateaux de Paris – This company currently has 3 boats and rents 2 out for exclusive use and can accommodate up to 250 people.
  • Bateaux Parisiens   – Bateaux Parisiens offers semi-private experiences to smaller groups (2 to 50) as well as entire private boat hires for larger groups that can accommodate over 100 people.
  • Batobus – A Batobus boat can be hired for private use and can seat up to 180 persons. These hires are geared towards shorter corporate hires.
  • Canauxarama – This company offers boats for private use along both the Seine River as well as the Canal St Martin. Boats can accommodate between 50 to 200 guests.  
  • Vedettes de Paris – This company offers boats that can accommodate 30 to 250 persons for events, cocktail hours, and sit-down meals and can do a variety of semi-private (part of a boat or lounge) to private options. 
  • Vedettes du Pont Neuf – This company offers various options and can accommodate 30 to 200 people depending on the boat and type of event.
  • Yachts de Paris   – This company operates a fleet of yachts and barges for private use in Paris which range from small to large boats, which can arrange sailings for groups from 2 to 800 people!

Green River Cruises private Seine River boat cruises

How to Choose Your Seine Cruise

So there you have it, the details of seven different companies that operate Seine river cruises in Paris, plus a list of companies that offer dinner cruises and private Seine River cruises!

Summary of Seine River Cruise Factors to Consider 

So how can you use all the above information to decide which Seine cruise might be the best for you? This is a matter of deciding on what is most important to you regarding the cruise. Main factors you probably want to consider:

  • Location of port departure
  • Price of tickets
  • Narration type and languages
  • Accessibility (for those with physical mobility limitations)
  • Length of trip
  • Size of boat
  • Do you want to pay extra for a meal, themed cruise, or private cruise?
  • Do you plan to purchase a pass, such as the Paris Pass , that includes a Seine cruise?

If you are short on time in Paris and interested in seeing a lot of highlights in one day (and do a Seine River cruise), we recommend this full day walking tour . It includes a Louvre tour, visit to Eiffel Tower, Seine River cruise, view of Notre Dame, and visit to Montmartre.

Best Time of Year to Take a Seine River Cruise in Paris

Most companies operate Seine River cruises year round. The high season for the companies is generally April to September with these being the most popular times to take a river cruise in Paris. Most companies have more frequent departures and more boats operating during the summer months.

Obviously the cruises are more pleasant, especially if you want to sit or stand outside, during the warmer months. It can be too cold or windy to sit outside during the winter months. If you have a flexible schedule, I’d try to go on a day without rain forecast.

The boats can become crowded, especially in the summer months and around school holidays. The first and last cruises of the day are often less crowded. If you are in Paris during a busy time of year, we recommend making sure you go to the port well in advance of your desired cruise departure to get your ticket and be among the first in line to get aboard.

Note that the cruises cannot operate in severe weather so during storms they are often canceled. They also cannot operate if the river levels get too high or low. Between November to April in particular, the water levels can often get too high making it difficult or impossible for them to go under some of the bridges, causing cruises to either stop operating or modify their sailings.

Seine River Cruise Tips

Once you know the cruise you want to take and have booked your tickets, here are some things to remember:

  • We recommend booking your ticket in advance for any of the Seine cruises as the prices online may be discounted. However, for most of the general sightseeing cruises you can normally buy same day tickets in person at the dock. But for the meal cruises and any special event cruises, it is generally necessary to book in advance and have a reservation.
  • Many of the Seine River cruise companies have very similar names. Be sure you know the exact name of the company you book your ticket with so you don’t get confused when trying to find the departure point. Even if you book the ticket through a third-party seller like Viator, you’ll want to know the boat company’s name.
  • Make sure you know the location of the departure point and leave some time to find it. Many people have difficulty finding the cruise departure points since they are often not at an exact address. Most of the ticket kiosks are located along the riverside quays so you will need to be looking right along the river. You will often need to walk down a set of stairs to reach the riverside quays and find the boat docking location.
  • Most boat companies ask that you be at dock and get your ticket at least 30 minutes before your departure. But this varies by company and the type of cruise.
  • Many of the boat companies offer smartphone applications that you can download with the cruise commentary in various languages. If you wish to do this, be sure you bring your fully-charged smartphone and have headphones with you . You can download the app before your cruise or once you are there. In some cases, this is now the only option on some cruises for commentary.

Paris Seine cruise

Our Seine River Cruise Experiences in Paris

For my first Seine River boat tour in 2012 with then partner Ethan, we prioritized location, followed by price, and then narration. After researching the options ourselves, we personally chose Vedettes du Pont Neuf for an evening cruise along the Seine for a few reasons.

First, it was within a 5-minute walking distance of where we were staying in Paris. Second, it provided the best prices and we booked tickets in advance online for only 16 euros total for the two of us. These tickets also gave us a lot of flexibility regarding when we used them as they were good for one year following purchase.

Third, the live narration was preferred by us over pre-recorded narration although honestly it rained (unfortunately!) and it was difficult to hear the guide during parts of our cruise because of the rain. Finally, we were not interested in any sort of meal or specialty cruise and the no-frills cruises provided by this company was a good fit for us.

Overall, we were very satisfied with our choice as the only major problem was that it started to rain during our cruise. I would definitely recommend trying to do the cruise when you have good weather if you can.

Paris Seine cruise

Then in 2017 I decided to do another Seine river cruise with Laurence as he had never done one before. This time we chose the Bateaux Parisiens. Our decision was made simple on this visit as we were traveling with the Paris Pass and we were able to get free tickets with our pass for this cruise.

The main departure point for this cruise is next to the Eiffel Tower which is convenient if you are planning to do a cruise before or after a visit there. See our Eiffel Tower tips for making the most of your visit to the Tour Eiffel!

This time the weather cooperated and we were able to sit outside and enjoy the views. Towards the end we also moved inside and listed to the commentary. The Bateaux Parisiens boats are larger than those by the Vedettes du Pont Neuf and it was more crowded than my first experience but there was plenty of space to sit and move around. 

Paris Seine river boat cruises

Hope this guide was useful in helping you select the Seine cruise that was the best fit for you during your trip to Paris. Essentially no matter which Seine cruise you choose, you are going to see the same scenery!

If you are planning to travel to Paris in the future, you might want to save this article by pinning it to Pinterest to read again later:

A guide to finding the best Seine river cruises in Paris. The guide reviews all the top cruise companies, listing cost, duration, narration type, departure points, and other information. We also provide information for those wanting to book a dinner cruise or private Seine cruise. #Seinecruise #Paris #Seinerivercruise #Seine #river #cruise #France

Have you taken a Seine cruise during a trip to Paris? Let us know what company you chose and let us know your feedback and tips for other readers trying to decide on a boat tour.

Have a question about taking a Seine River cruise or another question about traveling in Paris? As always, all questions and comments are welcome.

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BabaWaga Post author

May 19, 2023 at 5:26 am

Hi Jessica and Laurence, just wanted to send a little message of thanks: randomly found your blog post whilst researching Seine cruises for an approaching visit to Paris and can honestly say I didn’t need to go any further, your wonderfully informative article covered it all. Thank you so much! We have opted for the Vedettes de Paris sightseeing tour with our children as nice & close to the Eiffel tour where we are booked in to visit later that same day (I ordered the onboard champagne as a surprise for my hubs!)

As we will have a bit of time between disembarking and the Eiffel visit we’re looking for somewhere to stop by for lunch? Is there anywhere you would recommend nearby – cafe’s, restaurants all considered. Many thanks and warmest regards.

Jessica & Laurence Norah Post author

May 21, 2023 at 9:46 am

Hi BabaWaga,

So happy to hear that our Seine River cruise post was helpful in choosing a cruise company and booking a cruise. I am sure you will have a good time.

Yes, the locations near the Eiffel Tower make it really convenient to visit the tower afterwards. The Champagne I am sure will be a nice surprise. On tip is that I would recommend being early to make sure you locate the correct boarding spot (a few cruise companies board near there so it can be a bit confusing) and to be near the front of the line for your booked or preferred cruise time so you have more choice of seating.

So to be honest, there is not a lot of places I would really recommend there. But one nice (and inexpensive & kid-friendly) experience if the weather is nice is to get sandwiches or buy ingredients for a picnic (or buy them before your cruise) and have a picnic lunch on the Champs de Mars with a grand view of the Eiffel Tower. There are some benches there as well as areas of the grass that you are allowed to sit on (parts were closed when we were last there a couple of weeks ago but there was still plenty of space open). Just be sure to bring something to sit on and something to pack away your rubbish until you find a bin. I did this with my own family a couple of weeks ago and it was really nice.

Hope that helps and wishing you and your family a lovely trip to Paris!

Best, Jessica

Okon Post author

November 9, 2022 at 7:06 am

Great information at one spot! My spouse and I are planning a first-time Paris tour in the Spring, 2023, the tour that will include a dinner cruise on the Seine. Some of the luxury tour boats we see in pictures look like cattle boats. We’d like a boat which is less cram and with a seat/table choice. What interests us most in your presentation is the mention that Bateaux Parisiens Dinner Cruise has seat/table choice options. I wonder if there are other companies with that offer. Any more information in this regard will be highly appreciated.

November 10, 2022 at 10:23 am

So glad that you and your spouse are vising Paris for the first time in the Spring. Such a wonderful city 😉

So yes, the Bateaux Parisiens dinner cruises on the Seine do offer you a seating/table choice. But so do most of the other dinner cruises. I would recommend trying to get a table for 2 persons only with a window view. Some boats only have window views, but many have a middle row of tables as well.

Captaine Fracasse is another company that focuses only on lunch and dinner cruises and is often rated as having some of the the best food on the Seine.

But if you are really wanting a true luxury cruise and want a more private experience, you’ll probably want to book a private cruise if you have that kind of budget. In all the cruises they do try to pack in tables to get in the most guests for the given floor space.

As all the main companies are serving 50-100 guests a 3-course meal in a 1.5 to 2.5 hour period on a boat. The food and service was good in our experience and we enjoyed the dinner cruises we’ve taken, but it is not necessarily a luxury experience. All the dinner cruises are fairly similar. So you’ll want to go in with realistic expectations I think to enjoy the cruise as you are paying for being able to enjoy dinner while floating on the Seine.

Hope that helps, and just let us know if you have any further questions as you plan your trip to Paris.

jeff cabine Post author

April 6, 2022 at 4:37 am

I found it interesting when you said the boat layouts vary, but there are around 10 stairs to the second story, which is not wheelchair accessible. I used to think differently and now it makes more sense my disabled friend should love this trip to have fun. What you said about seine tours was really interesting to me.

April 6, 2022 at 7:19 am

Yes, I think you are referring specifically to the Bateaux Mouches boats as their boats are wheelchair accessible to get onto and the ground floors are accessible. But as you note, many of their boat have a second story which requires going up a set of stairs so are not accessible for those in wheelchairs or mobility scooters.

There are a few different Seine River cruises that are wheelchair accessible which is great. It is always a good idea to double check with any of the boat companies in advance of your visit as sometimes construction, docking, etc. issues can temporarily impact accessibility even if the boat itself is accessible.

Wishing you and your friends a great trip to Paris, Jessica

Jenn Post author

February 16, 2022 at 6:59 am

I just wanted to say thank you for including detailed accessibility information on your blog post. It is so helpful to me and almost no one includes actionable accessibility information. Thank you so much!!

February 16, 2022 at 7:05 am

You are very welcome, and I hope the information is helpful in choosing a Seine boat cruise company in Paris. The information was accurate pre-COVID so you may want to double check before booking with any company if the info is not noted when booking as I know some companies are running fewer boats now and have had to make some changes. But I think most of the information should still be valid.

Wishing you a great trip to Paris and just let us know if you have any questions!

SA NY Post author

November 11, 2021 at 12:22 am

Awesome info! Thanks for sharing this information on Paris cruises with us.

November 11, 2021 at 4:07 am

You’re welcome SA, and just let us know if you have any questions about choosing or booking a Seine cruise in Paris!

Jessica Post author

October 25, 2021 at 7:06 pm

Thank you for your helpful guidance! We will be in Paris for Bastille Day on July 14, 2022. Any suggestions for a Seine river boat cruise where we can watch the fireworks?

October 26, 2021 at 6:37 am

Hi Jessica,

Yes, Bastille Day is a great time to be in Paris if you enjoy celebrations and festivities. A couple of the cruise companies usually offer Bastille Day cruises in the evening, such as this particular dinner cruise which includes a special 6-course dinner with wine and Champagne.

I haven’t seen an announcement about the specific plans for Bastille Day in 2022, but the river is typically an excellent place from which to watch the illuminations and fireworks in central Paris. Normally the main fireworks are shot off from the Eiffel Tower and you get a wonderful view of the Eiffel Tower from the river. There will be both tourist cruises out as well as lots of small private boats to watch the fireworks.

Just note that for a holiday like this prices are going to be higher both for Seine cruises but also for dinner around that time period because of the holiday as many restaurants will be serving special menus. But it is a great time to be there. Just be sure to book well in advance for any cruises, activities, or dinners!

Mel Danbrook Post author

August 31, 2021 at 10:42 pm

Hello! We will be arriving in Paris on September 18/21. (arriving around 12:30pm) We only have that afternoon and evening to try and see a few sights (taking the train the following morning to Switzerland). Seeing the Eiffel Tower is on our list – the idea of a short Seine River cruise to try and see a little more of the city is intriguing! What would be a good river cruise option that leaves/returns close to the Eiffel Tower – probably one with a meal option as we would be looking to have dinner somewhere anyway. Any suggestions on options that will allow us to see a little more of the city in a short time frame would be wonderful! Cheers

September 1, 2021 at 11:56 am

Yes, it would be pretty easy to combine a visit to the Eiffel Tower and a Seine River cruise into one afternoon/evening. A few of the cruises leave near the Eiffel Tower. So one good option is the Bateaux Parisiens (listed above) which leaves from the Port de la Bourdonnais (a 5 minute walk or less from the Eiffel Tower). There is a discounted ticket for that one available here .

Another option might be take the Batobus hop-on hop-off boat cruise as that will allow you to get on and off the cruise as you wish. The Eiffel Tower is one of its stops. You can see more about it here .

But there are a few options. Most of the normal sightseeing cruises lasts about 1 hour. There are also dinner cruise options available as well which will be longer and in the evening. But since you are wanting to see the city, I’d probably recommend taking a sightseeing one in the daytime so you can more clearly see the landmarks along the river.

Hope that helps! Jessica

Tavish Post author

July 17, 2021 at 9:06 pm

Could you suggest the best option for a longer night time dinner cruise. My daughter just graduated and has never been to Europe, I had hoped to do this on our first evening, but the cost for a nice meal and a window seat seems to be in the 500$ range, and the reviews of the meals are awful, they say there is no customer service, and that many times the boats did not leave the dock without being offered a refund either. Time is not an issue, budget is, but mostly I want to start off her adventure with a really positive experience. The alternative idea was to try to get an earlier dinner at a really good restaurant (I dont know where), and then a nighttime cruise to see the lights and sites. I worry dinner would be too slow, and we would be pressured to get to the boat on time and it would ruin the meal. I would appreciate any guidance/suggestions. Thanks so much.

July 18, 2021 at 4:20 am

For the dinner cruises, you do need to get to the boat on time. You actually need to get there a bit early to make sure you have time to check-in and board. If you miss the boat, you simply miss it. Many people who leave poor reviews had trouble finding the boat, so I’d leave plenty of time for this as if you are not used to looking for addresses along the river, it can take awhile to find the correct spot.

Almost all the dinner cruises last about 2 hours and this was more than enough time for us to enjoy 3 courses. So I don’t think you’d feel rushed in terms of eating. But you do of course do some of the sightseeing while seated and eating your meal.

I am not sure how many people you are booking for but you should be able to easily find an option for $100 per person or less. You do have to pay more for extras like a guaranteed window spot, flowers, Champagne, etc. But for 2 persons on the cruise we did , seem to be currently ranging from $150 to $250 for 2 persons, depending on the extras.

Some of the dinner cruises and regular Seine river cruises are currently not running due to the pandemic so that is something to keep in mind as well as there are fewer choices at the moment than 2 years ago.

Captaine Fracasse is probably the cruise best known for having better food. But I would recommend not booking for the meal itself but for the overall experience, we had good food on our cruises but it was not amazing. Most of their evening cruises are 2-hour dinner cruises.

But if you are looking for the option to order what you want à la carte and the level of service that you can get at a nice restaurant on land, you may be better suited to do the dinner at a restaurant and then get a regular evening cruise to see the sights at night. If you go that route, I’d consider what cruises can work and then find a restaurant within walking distance, a short metro, or taxi ride away from the departure point. If doing a regular sightseeing cruise, your ticket is usually good all day so you have the flexibility of when you get to the boat, you just need to get there well before their final departure time.

Sarah Post author

November 26, 2020 at 5:29 am

Oh, you know, once l used the service of Bateaux Mouches Seine Cruise. Water and everything that connected to it is my passion, even in Amsterdam l was sailing on a boat 3 times during 1 week of stay. Enjoyable. Thank you, guys, for this article!

November 26, 2020 at 6:35 am

Glad you enjoyed your Bateaux Mouches cruise on the Seine while you were visiting Paris — sounds like you really enjoy river cruises!

Nancy Post author

February 15, 2020 at 2:53 pm

We will be in Paris June 8, 2020. We are coming in for the afternoon from Charles De Gaulle Airport. We would like to take the evening cruise at 21:00. Since we aren’t staying in Paris and need to get back to the airport after the cruise, what cruise line and departure point would you recommend? We would also like to sit on the top deck outside. Thank you so much for any information you can give us!

February 16, 2020 at 3:24 am

I think the best cruise probably depends on what else you plan to do in Paris and how you plan to return to the airport. So for instance if you plan to visit the Eiffel Tower (or something nearby), you could do that, and then walk from the tower to a boat departure point. Two of the main places where the Seine River cruises leave (and return) are near the Eiffel Tower and near Notre-Dame.

Most of the cruise companies will have a 21:00 (9:00pm) departure time in June as that is a very popular time of year for the cruises. Many of the cruise companies depart every 30 minutes. Most cruises are 1 hour in duration. You have many choices for cruises.

I would suggest maybe checking out Vedettes de Paris or Bateaux Parisiens as they both leave from near the Eiffel Tower and I think most (if not all) of their boats have top decks with outdoor seating. They normally have departures every 30 minutes in the summer. If you buy a voucher online, it is good for the full day and then you can exchange it at the company ticket booth for when you want to take the cruise.

Note that all of the boat companies have multiple boats and the boats can have different deck and seating configurations so you can’t guarantee a particular boat. It also might not be possible (or desirable) to sit outside if the weather is bad. If there is a type of seat you want, I’d get into line early to be among the first to board for your departure.

If you are planning to go directly to CDG airport after the cruise, you could then walk to the metro station, take Line 6 to RER B. RER B will take you directly to the airport. Or, of course, you could catch a taxi to the airport.

February 16, 2020 at 12:11 pm

Thank you so much! We will take your advise. You have a lot of good information on your web site! Nancy

Davina Cipriano Post author

January 3, 2020 at 5:47 pm

My daughter and I will be coming to Paris in March. When we purchase the ticket do we have to purchase for the exact date we plan on using it? We are going to be in Paris for a little over a week. Or do can we purchase the ticket and use it on the day that works best for us? I notice online it make you pick a day but then says its good for like 6 months.

January 3, 2020 at 6:57 pm

Hi Davina, Sounds like a great trip. For the Seine river cruises, it depends on the cruise company and which cruise you want to take. But yes some of the companies that have the regular daily sightseeing cruises allow you to buy a ticket and then use it for any date and time for a certain period of time (6 months, 1 year). So I am not sure which company you are referring to specifically, but if the ticket says it is valid for 6 months, then I am sure it is valid. Feel free to follow-up with the cruise company and I’m happy to double-check for you. Best, Jessica

Lauren Levy Post author

December 14, 2019 at 5:51 pm

HI! We’ll be in Paris in December and want to take a river cruise with teenagers. Thinking we’ll do an evening cruise sans the food. But we want to take a boat out and around the sister of the US Statue of Liberty. What cruise do you suggest? Is it pretty to see this at night or should we regroup and do this during the day instead? Thank you!!

December 15, 2019 at 10:33 am

Yes, unfortunately, many of the boats do turn around near the Pont d’Iéna after passing the Eiffel Tower, which is just before they get to the Liberty of Statue replica statue. For instance, the Bateaux Parisiens course map shows that its longer lunch, dinner, and festive cruises go past it but not the regular 1 hour sightseeing cruises.

The 1.5 hour Canauxarama sightseeing cruise does go there, probably because it is a bit longer, so that might be the best cruise for you if you don’t want a meal.

From the boat, you can see if just after you go under the bridge Pont de Grenelle, it is located just at the tip of the Île aux Cygnes (Island of the Swans). The statue is probably easiest to see and photograph during the day, but they do light it up at night so you can see it at night as well. When you view the front of it from the boat, you can also see the Eiffel Tower in the background.

You can also walk over by bridge to the Île aux Cygnes as well if you find yourself in that area and want to see the statue up close.

Celeste Post author

December 8, 2019 at 3:35 pm

My daughter and I will be in Paris in late December. Given that it will be cold and possibly rainy, do you have a recommendation? We simply want to see the sites (no meal necessary). Also, are the river cruises impacted by the current strikes? Thank you!

December 9, 2019 at 6:56 am

Hi Celeste,

Yes, I think all the regular Seine cruise boats have ample enclosed/covered as well as open-air space, so any of them should be OK in case of rain/cold. But definitely dress warmly as the air moving through the boats will make them feel a bit colder. We’ve personally used Bateaux Parisiens and Les Vedettes du Pont Neuf and I’ve sat inside on both (once during rain).

I’d recommend going during the day as it will be warmer and you can see more – at night you can see the lights and the Eiffel Tower lit up, but you can’t see the rest of the sites very well.

I don’t believe the Seine River cruises are being affected by the current strikes in Paris, but the strikes are having a huge impact on the metro, suburban trains, and traffic. Hopefully they will end before your trip, but if not, you’ll need to allow more time to get around.

Hope that helps, and just let me know if you have further questions.

Cindy Post author

October 16, 2019 at 3:06 pm

I’m so confused. 2 of us will be travelling to Paris in May 2020, which Seine River cruise would you recommend for us and which canal cruise would you recommend? Is a canal cruise worth doing? Thank you

October 17, 2019 at 10:47 am

It really depends on the type of cruise you are looking for and I review all the major companies that offer Seine cruises above. Do any sound better to you than the others?

If you are just wanting a sightseeing cruise (no meal) and don’t have a particular price point or concern for where it departs, I would say Bateaux Parisiens is a good one to consider. We’ve done it and it is a standard and popular sightseeing cruise that offers daytime and evening cruises. Cruises last about 1 hour. It has both covered and open seating and you can listen to narration on your phone (pre download app to phone) or in the bottom part of boat using wired in wands. You can read more and book ahead here .

If you are interested in also doing a canal cruise. I would consider combining a Seine River cruise and Canal Saint-Martin cruise, you might consider t his 2.5 hour cruise with Paris Canal that includes a 1 hour Seine River cruise and then 1.5 canal ride. It departs from near the Musée d’Orsay and ends at Parc de la Villette (it is NOT a round-trip cruise).

If you have limited time in Paris and are not overly interested in the canal, then I’d say to just do the Seine River cruise. I’ve done the canal cruise and enjoyed it but the canal section is much slower as it has to slowly go through each lock and there are no major attractions to see unlike the Seine River portion which goes past places like Notre Dame, Musee d’Orsay, and the Eiffel Tower.

BTW, if you plan to purchase the Paris Pass , then a Seine River cruise is included so don’t book separate tickets.

Hope that helps, Jessica

October 17, 2019 at 5:10 pm

Thank you for the great advice.

Cassim Degani Post author

May 25, 2019 at 8:23 am

Will like to take the Siene cruise on the historical boat on June 5th during midday

May 25, 2019 at 8:29 am

Hi Cassim, Which cruise company do you plan to take? You can book your ticket online in advance or just show up a little early and buy it at the dock. You can often save a few euros by booking in advance, depending on the cruise company, so that is generally what we recommend. Also in summer, although boats have large capacity they can sometimes book out in advance. Enjoy your Seine cruise. Best, Jessica

Patty Post author

May 10, 2019 at 1:10 pm

Thank you for this review. We will be in Paris in two weeks and wanted to take an anniversary dinner cruise. This will help me out a lot to make a final decision.

May 12, 2019 at 11:58 am

Hi Patty, Glad you found our article helpful, and I’d read over the reviews for the dinner cruises and pick one that sounds like a good fit. Wishing you a wonderful anniversary in Paris 😉 Best, Jessica

Bob Post author

February 25, 2019 at 7:24 pm

Excellent info, thank you so much for sharing a great article. We are in Paris for a week (first time, probably only time) and we having a hard time deciding between day and night. Do you think it would be worth it to take a day and evening Seine cruise? Thanks for any input.

February 26, 2019 at 6:49 am

Hi Bob, Yes, I think that if you want to see the views from the river both during the day and night, then taking two cruises may be a good choice for you since you have a full week in Paris. I would not recommend this if you had only a few days. You might consider doing one of the cruises as a meal cruise (lunch or dinner) and then one just as a sightseeing cruise to change it up a bit. Enjoy your time in Paris. Jessica

Peter Post author

February 20, 2019 at 6:52 am

Great advice. I’ve had the pleasure of staying at a hotel near this river where I could jog from Notre Dame to the Eifel Tower. It was a wonderful trip.

February 20, 2019 at 7:23 am

Hi Peter, Yes the area along the Seine River in central Paris is great and you are able to see a lot of the most notable attractions from a Seine River cruise which is nice! Best, Jessica

jdawg Post author

January 29, 2019 at 11:51 am

Thanks you for the comprehensive article.

Trying to narrow down and decide which to take. My wife and I will be traveling with out 7 & 9 year old kids.

Would you recommend an evening / nighttime cruise or daytime?

Also thinking that the 2 hour tour might be too long for the kids?

Thanks again!!

January 29, 2019 at 12:31 pm

Hi there, Yes, I agree that I would choose one of the 1 hour cruises as 2 hours may be too long for the kids (and perhaps some adults).

If looking for a cruise (not a hop on hop off) I’d skip Batobus. If cost is a factor Vedettes du Pont Neuf usually offers the lowest priced online tickets. But I’d also let location guide you if none stand out to you and a few of the companies leave from the Eiffel Tower and a couple from Notre Dame so that might help narrow down which might fit better into your itinerary.

Day or night is hard and we’ve done both. Both are enjoyable in different ways. The highlight of the evening cruises for most is seeing the illuminated monuments, particularly the Eiffel Tower sparkling but you can see a bit more in the day time. If traveling in winter, I’d definitely make sure you have a boat with indoor seating. I’d maybe ask your kids opinions and let them choose between night and day 😉

Enjoy your Seine cruise and time in Paris! Jessica

Marlene Post author

December 15, 2018 at 11:45 pm

I just wanted to let you know simply how much I appreciated the time you took to write this useful post on Paris cruises. It is so complete and helpful, and as my father travels with either a cane or wheelchair, the accessibility information was essential and something we did not find elsewhere. Thanks so much for your excellent travel blog!

December 16, 2018 at 5:23 am

Hi Marlene, Thanks so much for taking the time to leave a comment and we are so happy to hear that you found our information helpful. We hope that it has helped you decide which Seine river boat cruise is best for you. Yes, it can be difficult to find a river cruise that is accessible but there are a few boat companies that make this possible for those using canes or wheelchairs. Wishing you a wonderful trip to Paris! Best, Jessica

Sharon Post author

October 22, 2018 at 11:05 pm

This article was very helpful! It really narrowed down the options. Thank you!

October 22, 2018 at 11:07 pm

Hi Sharon, Thanks so much for taking the time to comment, and we love to hear our post was helpful. Just let us know if you have any questions about Seine cruises in Paris! Best, Jessica

Ro Post author

October 21, 2018 at 3:30 am

Any offer vegan food on the dinner cruises?

October 21, 2018 at 8:34 am

Hi Ro, Most offer meat options as mains, but most also offer a vegetarian option. A few can do vegan options by request. I know Paris en Scene offers the option for a vegan menu on their Seine dinner cruises, but you need to make the request to the company after you make a dinner cruise reservation. Here is an example of one of their dinner cruises. Best, Jessica

Bill Post author

August 6, 2018 at 1:35 pm

Can you provide any information on wheelchair accessibility? There is a lot of very general information available on the cruise websites but very little specifics. My wife travels in a wheelchair buy is able to manage a few steps. Are there steps to board the boat? (and how many?) Is there a lift to the top deck? Are toilets available and are there steps involved? Thank you for any information you can provide.

August 6, 2018 at 2:13 pm

Yes, the cruise boat operators unfortunately do not share much info on accessibility (France is notoriously bad about this). I don’t know a lot about the accessibility of the boats but many do have stairs and I doubt any of them have lifts. The other issue is that most companies have several boats, and not all are of the same design.

I actually researched this a bit for another reader who emailed last week which Seine cruises were wheelchair accessible. It seems like the best chance is going to be from one of the cruises that leave from near the Eiffel Tower as these are the most popular and appear to have the most services and there is at least once access ramp here.

I would recommend calling the company you are most interested in to check specifically about accessibility and the specific needs you may have, but here is the info I found on the main Paris Seine River cruise company websites:

-Here is what the Bateaux Parisiens website says: “Bateaux Parisiens welcomes people with reduced mobility. For safety reasons, the number of seats may be limited depending on the configuration of the boat. Access to toilets on our boats is only by stairs. PMR toilets are available at Bistro Parisien, our restaurant dock, pontoon n ° 2.”

-Here is what Batobus website says: “Can disabled people in wheelchairs board the Batobus? Because of the many steps leading to the quays and/or the boats, only the Eiffel Tower stop has wheelchair access. NOTE: access to this stop is via a ramp that is also used by vehicles.”

-Here is what Canauxrama says: “The access to the boats is problematic for people with wheelchairs, especially at the Marina Arsenal since it is entirely paved. Plus there are stairs on some of our boats. Only the persons with manual wheelchairs can do the cruise on the Saint-Martin Canal if they are accompanied with people who can help them. It is the same problem for the cruise on the Marne River, because there are stairs at the landing stage in Joinville le Pont.”

-I could not find NO accessibility information on the Vedettes de Paris , Bateaux Mouches , or Vedettes du Pont Neuf websites.

I would love to know what you find out if you contact the companies about this and I would love to hear about your experiences to update this article and better help future readers. I will note that the other reader I was talking to said that the company he contacted did not respond to his email, so calling is probably the best way to get an answer from some of them.

Hope this helps! Jessica

Regina Post author

June 21, 2018 at 8:25 am

What is the temperature month of October ? What would be a nice romantic dinner an Eiffel dinner or Seinne river cruise ?

June 25, 2018 at 1:19 am

In October the weather in Paris is often cool but not cold, although it can be warm. Rain is definitely a possibility. I’d check the forecast closer to the time. I’d just check the forecast that morning and dress appropriately. You’ll be covered and warm at a Eiffel Tower restaurant or a Seine River dinner cruise (just make sure it offers indoor or covered dining area) so the weather should not matter too much. I think both would be nice. I have eaten in the Eiffel Tower and most tables have a nice view over the city (I’d request one when you make your booking). But on the boat you are on the water with the ever-changing scenery of Paris and you have the Eiffel Tower as a beautiful backdrops.

There are a few restaurants on the Eiffel Tower (e.g., 58 Tour Eiffel and Le Jules Verne) and the most well known is probably Le Jules Verne which offers fine dining. Note that the prices here are high as you are paying more for the location and view than the food here. It is a nice experience but expensive.

The Seine River dinner cruises are likely going to be less expensive than a dinner at the Eiffel Tower but may not offer as many options or be as nice as a restaurant. You can check out compare some of the dinner cruise options here .

If budget is a factor, I’d consider visiting the Eiffel Tower first and then doing a dinner boat cruise in Paris. Many of the cruises leave near the Eiffel Tower. That sounds like a very nice romantic evening that combines both the Tower and the cruise 😉 But either way, I am sure you’ll have a wonderful evening, just be sure to book in advance.

Hope this helps, and wishing you a romantic trip to Paris! Jessica

Mae Post author

June 5, 2018 at 9:29 am

Hello there. I’m so thankful I found your blog. This is very helpful. It’s my first time visiting Paris this July. I was wondering if you think it will be a good decision to do the cruise in the evening. I have a Paris Pass, btw. Will the ticket for the cruise that’s included in the Paris Pass allow me to do the Seine cruise in the evening? How long does the cruise take?

June 6, 2018 at 3:28 pm

Glad you found our articles helpful in planning your Paris trip 😉 A night cruise can be nice, we particularly like getting on the boat just before sunset. But we’ve also done them during the day and at night to see the lights – any time is nice really as long as the weather is good 😉

Currently, Paris Pass holders can claim a free ticket for a Seine River cruise with Bateaux Parisiens. The cruises take approximately 1 hour. The current schedule shows that these tours depart every 30 minutes between April-September from 10:00 to 22:30. So yes you can definitely do a night cruise if you wish.

But you can consult the Bateaux Parisiens website or this page for the Paris Pass information on the cruise for more details and the latest updates before your trip.

Hope this helps and wishing you a wonderful trip to Paris!

Laura Post author

April 15, 2018 at 6:36 pm

Very helpful article! Thank you! I think I would looking at Vedettes du Pont Neuf due to location. I leave in may, can’t wait!

April 17, 2018 at 10:49 pm

Hello Laura, Thanks so much for taking the time to comment and enjoy your trip to Paris and your Seine river cruise!! Best, Jessica

Michael Barnes Post author

April 15, 2018 at 12:09 pm

Hi – great blog, so thanks for the time you’ve taken to share what you’ve learned. Question, though – in this page about the river cruises, you mention that the Paris Museum Pass included a particular sightseeing boat tour, but your page about the Museum Pass says that no boat tours are included. Looking at the Museum Pass’ own website, it looks like there is no longer a boat tour included. Is that now correct?

April 15, 2018 at 12:12 pm

I think I just answered my own question – here you’re referring to the Paris Pass, not the Paris Museum Pass. Thanks.

April 17, 2018 at 10:47 pm

Hi Michael, Yes, the Paris Pass and Paris Museum pass are separate passes although the Paris Pass includes the Paris Museum Pass as well as several other attractions, including the Seine cruise. Best, Jessica

April 17, 2018 at 10:46 pm

Hi Michael, Glad you found the post helpful. Yes it is the Paris Pass (not the Paris Museum Pass) which includes a Seine River cruise and the information is still correct as of today. Enjoy your time in Paris! Best, Jessica

Norma Post author

March 23, 2018 at 5:54 am

Amazing post here, Thank you so much for taking the time to write about and compare all the Paris river trips. I think I am going to do a dinner cruise on the Seine!

March 23, 2018 at 7:00 am

Hi Norma, Great, glad you found it helpful and wishing you a lovely dinner river cruise in Paris 😉 Best, Jessica

Philippe Post author

March 7, 2018 at 2:53 am

Your article was very helpful! Thank you so much! 🙂

March 7, 2018 at 7:45 am

Hi Philippe, You’re very welcome 😉 Enjoy your trip to Paris. Best, Jessica

hind idris Post author

March 4, 2018 at 1:24 am

thank you for the kind info on seine river boats really thank u

March 4, 2018 at 6:03 am

Hi Hind, You are very welcome 😉 Hope you have a fantastic time in Paris. Best, Jessica

Chartres Post author

January 17, 2018 at 11:29 pm

Thanks for this amazing blog about boat cruises in Paris. Very helpful!

January 18, 2018 at 6:31 am

Glad you found it helpful, wishing you a wonderful trip to Paris!

Andrew Drogby Post author

December 1, 2017 at 4:55 am

Hi thanks for this article about the river cruises in Paris . I tried Bateaux Parisiens after reading your article. My experience was great. And I wanted to share it with you… If you go in Paris in winter especially I advise you the illumination cruise. It s cold during the winter but you will be able to feel all the romanticism of Paris city. After 5 pm the darkness come over the city and the buildings around the Seine river are illuminated. This emphasizes the character of the city . Be sure to bundle up otherwise you will be a Mr Freeze!

December 2, 2017 at 12:37 pm

Hi Andrew, Glad that this article helped you choose a Seine river cruise, and glad you had a great time with Bateaux Parisiens. Yes, warm layers are definitely a must on river cruises, especially in the winter, when it can get pretty cold outside in Paris!! Stay warm and enjoy the rest of your winter trip to Paris! Best, Jessica

Sacha Post author

June 22, 2017 at 1:25 am

Good & helpful information on Seine river boats!!!

June 22, 2017 at 10:19 am

Hi Sacha, Glad you found our Paris article on Seine river cruises helpful, and thanks so much for taking the time to leave us a comment 😉

John Post author

June 14, 2017 at 8:38 am

I have a few safety tips for the Seine river boat cruises. Watch out for your stuff at all times. Check whether all your bags are present throughout the entire trip. Be extra vigilant when changing locations and boats to avoid loss or theft. While these tips are important, there’s nothing like experience to help ensure a safe voyage.

June 15, 2017 at 10:19 am

Hi John, Thanks so much for sharing these safety tips for the Seine Cruise boat tours in Paris! Best, Jessica

Nicolleen Post author

May 5, 2017 at 6:40 am

I really thank you for your amazing write- up. It really did helped in making my mind up with regards to the Seine river boat company that I needed, You should write more since you are doing such an impressive job!!! Thank you once again

May 5, 2017 at 12:55 pm

Hi Nicolleen, Thanks for taking the time to comment and glad that our article helped you choose the Seine cruise tour that was a best suited for you! Enjoy your trip to Paris. Best, Jessica

alicia Post author

May 2, 2017 at 8:32 pm

FYI all the children’s cruises are in French

May 4, 2017 at 1:50 pm

Hi Alicia, Thanks for this information!

Note: She is referring to the fact that Vedettes de Paris have recently introduced special children’s boat cruises on the Seine for children (mostly for school groups, reservation required) and they are currently only available in French as of May 2017.

sai kapoor Post author

February 1, 2017 at 8:21 am

We are planning for a short trip to paris, your article was very helpful in planning our trip. Thank you

February 2, 2017 at 4:25 am

Hi Sai, Glad to hear this and thanks for taking the time to comment. I hope you found the perfect Seine Cruise boat for you and that you have a lovely trip to Paris! Best, Jessica

Mohammed Post author

July 19, 2016 at 8:51 pm

I really thank you for your amazing write- up. It really did helped in making my mind up with regards to the Seine river boat company that ! needed, You should write more since you are doing such an impressive job!!! Thank you once again

travelcats Post author

July 21, 2016 at 4:49 am

Hi Mohammed, glad the post was useful to you and thanks for taking the time to leave us a comment. Enjoy your trip to Paris! ~ Jessica

Gulzar Post author

June 25, 2016 at 5:49 am

Thank you for the write up. This really made it easier choosing the Seine cruise for my upcoming trip to Paris.

June 25, 2016 at 8:02 am

Hi Gulzar, Great, glad this was information was helpful in helping your choose the best Seine river cruise for you. Have a great trip to Paris! ~ Jessica

Shannon Post author

May 27, 2016 at 3:58 pm

Wow, I am planning our 21 day European vacation and know that I want to do a cruise on the Siene River. I have been overwhelmed at the choices and trying to figure out which company to go with. Thanks for writing this article! It includes all of the major companies that have come up during my research. Since we are staying near the Eiffel Tower, I will take location into consideration, however I do like the idea of a live guide.

May 27, 2016 at 6:43 pm

Hi Shannon, Thanks for taking the time to write a comment, we greatly appreciate it and it makes our day to know we are providing useful and helpful travel info! I hope you have a great European vacation and best of luck on choosing a Seine river cruise; I am sure you’ll enjoy any cruise on the Seine. Paris is a wonderful city! Happy travels, Jessica

Ginn Post author

January 21, 2016 at 5:26 am

Very good info, im glad that i found your blogpost here. I was trying to google which boat offer an open deck

January 21, 2016 at 6:13 am

Hi Ginn, Glad you found the post on Seine river cruises helpful. As you can probably see by looking at the photos, almost all of the boats have some open deck seating. I would just avoid the Batobus as it is not very open and is not really designed for sightseeing (it is a hop-on/hop-off boat). I think you should be fine with any of the other companies, and just try to get in line early to make sure you get the type of seat on the boat you want. Enjoy your time in Paris! ~ Jessica

Devon Post author

November 7, 2015 at 10:55 am

This is a great post. I’ve been writing similar one during my trip around the world and I’m happy to use yours. I’ll be on the Seine tomorrow!

November 8, 2015 at 3:35 am

Hi Devon, glad you liked the post and hope it helped you choose a Seine cruise in Paris that is right for you. You are happy to link to our post in your own post about the Seine. Enjoy Paris, I look forward to visiting again next month! ~ Jessica

Mike Post author

October 15, 2015 at 7:03 am

Hey, yes cruising in the Seine river certainly one of the best thing to do in Paris. I have tested many of them. I think the best one certianly the cruise between Normandy and Paris. (the impressionist road by the river). I also like dinner cruises in Paris, it’s a good way the visit the French capital. We I have some visit (familly or friends) I generally book a simple cruise with bateau. For originality ,you can also try the canauxama in the Canal St Martin.

October 24, 2015 at 7:08 am

Hi Mike, yes, I also really enjoyed the cruise on the Canal Saint Martin which is a nice thing to do if you have already done a Seine river cruise in Paris. You can read about our experience on the canal cruise here:

https://independenttravelcats.com/2014/02/16/canal-cruises-paris-boat-ride-canal-saint-martin/

Meghan Post author

October 16, 2013 at 12:10 pm

I wish I could remember with which company I went on a boat cruise when I was in Paris. But I do remember it was a great way to rest our feet after tromping around the city and up the Eiffel Tower!

October 16, 2013 at 4:55 pm

Yes, it is definitely great to get an hour or two off your feet after a lot of walking!

MOl S Post author

October 16, 2013 at 4:28 am

Excellent! I’ll definitely take a cruise on the Seine the next time I’m in Paris

October 16, 2013 at 5:19 pm

Yes, hope you enjoy it!

Missy Homemaker Post author

October 12, 2013 at 9:44 am

I am just loving reading about your travels! I’ve nominated you for a Sunshine Award. You can read about it on my post today 🙂

Vanessa Morgan Post author

October 7, 2013 at 3:45 am

Beautiful photos of Paris and great information.

October 7, 2013 at 8:44 am

Thanks Vanessa!

Kate Post author

October 6, 2013 at 11:59 pm

I never took advantage of a boat tour on the Seine because I used to walk past it so frequently and saw a lot of parts of it in my time living in Paris. I had some friends that did and said they enjoyed it. But I think it’s different when you are just visiting I guess, less time to see things.

October 7, 2013 at 8:43 am

Yes, what I think is interesting about the cruises is they give you a different perspective of the buildings and scenery from the water than from the banks.

Miwa Post author

October 6, 2013 at 4:00 pm

New follower! Your blog is amazing! Such great photos and detailed info. I will definitely keep this post bookmarked for the next time I’m in Paris. (Not sure when that’ll be but hopefully soon!)

October 6, 2013 at 4:09 pm

Thanks for stopping by, glad you enjoyed the post. Paris is a special place for us as it was my first international trip when I was 16 and about 10 years later the first place Ethan and I visited together as a couple. Look forward to checking out your blog as well.

Suzanne Lucas Post author

October 5, 2013 at 8:02 am

Although I’m sure the rain wasn’t the greatest for your cruise, I must say the picture of the Eiffel tower through the rainy window is stunning. Paris is definitely on my must-see list. Thanks for the insight.

Stopping in from the Happy Kids Blog Hop.

October 6, 2013 at 12:06 pm

Yes, between the rain and having to keep the windows closed during about half the cruise, it did put a bit of a damper on the cruise but we came prepared with a travel blanket, jackets, and rain ponchos and made the best of the trip. We’d love to do it again with the rain!

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5 Best Seine River Cruise in Paris: Your Ultimate Guide

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Searching for the perfect Seine River Cruise in Paris, but overwhelmed by the choices? You’re not alone. Paris offers a smorgasbord of cruising experiences, from quick one-hour sightseeing jaunts to luxurious evening sails complete with Champagne and gourmet dinners .

Deciding on the best Seine river cruise can feel like navigating a complex maze of options, each more tantalizing than the last.

That’s why I wrote this guide. I live in Paris, love the Seine River Cruises and curated this exclusive list of the best Seine River cruises available.

Let’s set sail and discover the Seine as you’ve never seen it before.

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Salut, I am Lena – travel planning expert and parisienne since 2006 🩷

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Quick List: The Best River Cruise in Paris

If you’re not in the mood to sift through endless options and prefer a quick guide to the best choices, you’re in luck. Below, I’ve distilled the wide array of Seine River Cruises down to an essential shortlist—featuring the top 3 most popular and highly recommended experiences in Paris.

best boat cruise in paris

Best 1h River Seine Cruise

  • Roundtrip Seine River Cruise
  • Audio Commentary
  • Panoramic Views on Eiffel Tower , Notre Dame and more
  • Boarding at the Eiffel Tower

best boat cruise in paris

Best 2h River Seine Lunch Cruise

  • All-inclusive 3-Course Lunch with drinks
  • Panoramic Views on Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame and more

best boat cruise in paris

Best Seine Dinner Cruise

  • 3-Course Dinner with Drinks
  • Live Jazz Music & Window Seating
  • Panoramic views on Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame and more
  • Boarding near Musée d’Orsay

These top 3 Seine River Cruises are reliable picks if you prefer not to sift through the multitude of options available for river tours in Paris

However, if you’re interested in exploring additional options, or if you’re still undecided about which Seine River Cruise is the best fit for your Paris trip, continue reading

Don’t miss these articles, they can help you plan your Paris trip:

  • Is the Louvre Worth It? Your No-Nonsense Guide
  • 20 Arrondissements in Paris (Quick Guide + Map)
  • 21 best things to do in Paris on a Sunday

The Agony of Choice: Find the Perfect Paris River Seine Cruise

I’ve created a decision tree to help you easily identify the Seine River Cruise that best matches your preferences, expectations, and budget.

FInd the best seine river Cruise

The 5 Best Seine Cruises in Pairs

Do you know now which Cruise is the best for you? And which boat tour in Paris matches best your expectations? Then here’s for without further ado the compiled list of the best 5 Seine Cruises in Paris.

#1 The Go-To Option: One-Hour Sightseeing Cruise on the Seine

➲ Secure your seat on board of the Bateau Mouche here

The standard one-hour sightseeing cruise on the Seine is a fail-safe choice for any Paris visit.

This budget-friendly option allows you to view Paris’s most celebrated landmarks from the comfort of your seat—no extravagant add-ons, just the essentials.

For those pressed for time or seeking flexibility, this is an ideal pick. Most cruises of this kind depart every 30 to 60 minutes throughout the day.

The top-rated Seine River Cruise embarks right at the base of the Eiffel Tower. You can book it here . The tour offers a multilingual audioguide available in 10 languages , and accepts mobile vouchers—no need to worry about printing tickets. Just display it on your mobile device, and you’re all set to cruise.

Despite its straightforward approach, the tour doesn’t skimp on amenities, offering onboard WiFi for your convenience. Click here for exact schedules and booking info.

The Eiffel Tower is one of the sights you see from board of a Seine River Cruise

#2 Gourmet Lunch Cruise on the Seine: Savor the Sights

➲ Book this Lunch Cruise in advance , it sells out quickly

Picture this: you’re aboard a riverboat, cruising past iconic landmarks like the Eiffel Tower and Île de la Cité, all while indulging in a gourmet French meal and sipping fine wine . Sounds idyllic, doesn’t it? This two-hour Seine River Cruise offers just that experience .

As you sail, you’ll be entertained with live commentary and treated to a three-course à-la-carte French menu that includes an appetizer, starter, main course, and dessert. And let’s not forget the wine! For an even more authentic French experience, you can add a cheese course as an extra.

The cuisine on this lunch cruise is of a gastronomic caliber because it features a broad selection of French classics like foie gras and duck, as well as various meat, fish, and vegetarian options. To preview the menu in advance, click here.

Be aware that lunch cruises on the Seine are highly sought after and tables fill up quickly. To secure your spot, check rates and availability here and book in advance .

Find the best Seine river cruises in Paris and enjoy Paris sights from the comfort of a boat. No matter if you chose to take a Seine river dinner cruise or a night cruise, you sure have a great time!

#3 Jazz & Dining: The Best Seine Dinner Cruise

➲ Book this 3-Course Dinner Sightseeing Cruise here before it’s booked out

Want to elevate your Paris experience? Consider hopping on a 3-course dinner cruise that sets sail close to the Musée d’Orsay. As you drift along the Seine, you’ll catch iconic sights like the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame Cathedral, all from the comfort of your guaranteed window seat.

But let’s talk about the food—you’ll get to savor a gourmet 3-course meal complete with wine, Champagne, and other beverages . If you’re a fan of live music, the Jazz band on board adds a touch of ambiance without overwhelming the experience.

You have the flexibility to choose between a 1.5-hour early evening sail or a more leisurely 2.5-hour cruise. The dress code? Smart casual , so it’s stylish yet relaxed.

One note: the cruise is intended for those 10 years and older.

Don’t wait too long to book . Spots tend to fill up fast.

➲ 1.5h Seine Dinner Cruise starting at 6 PM: See availabilities here

➲ 2.5h Seine Dinner Cruise starting at 8PM: See availabilities here

Seine River Cruise Night

#4 Private Boat Tour in Paris: An intimate Seine Rive Cruise

➲ Book your private boat tour in Paris here

Opt in a Private Boat Tour in Paris for an intimate and luxurious adventure on the Seine .

The boat accommodates up to eight people, so it’s ideal for your small gatherings, celebrations, or simply an elevated sightseeing experience in Paris. If you travel with a pet, I have good news because your furry companions are also welcome on board.

The journey begins at the Statue of Liberty near the Eiffel Tower and sails all the way up to Notre Dame and back. Here you have the choice to either disembark where your tour began, or near the Louvre. A convenient drop off location, for your next Paris stop.

If you’re in the mood for a Parisian apéro, feel free to bring your snacks and drinks to enjoy as you cruise.

To top it off, the boat is equipped with Bluetooth speakers, so you can set the soundtrack to your unforgettable cruise. All while absorbing Paris from an entirely unique vantage point.

Click here to see if the Captain has still availabilities on your travel dates.

Private Boat tour in Paris

#5 Paris Night Cruise: The Illumination Cruise Explained

➲ Book your Night Time Paris Seine Cruise here

Discover the magic of Paris at night with an “Illumination Cruise” on the Seine. While the name might make it sound like an exclusive, high-priced affair, the reality is much simpler.

Essentially, this is your standard 1h-Seine River Paris Cruise but timed perfectly to showcase the city’s lights. Simply choose a late time slot—ideally around or just after sunset—to experience Paris as it transforms into the “City of Light.”

Aside from the dazzling lights, everything else about the cruise remains the same, from the iconic landmarks you’ll pass by to the ticket price. So you’re getting an extraordinary experience for the ordinary cost of a Seine cruise.

This evening adventure is perfect for photographers, romantics, or anyone wanting to see Paris from a different angle.

Don’t miss out on this enchanting yet surprisingly affordable experience. Book your Illumination Cruise now to capture Paris in its finest light.

Paris Night Seine Cruise

Panorama View from a Bateau Mouche

You may be wondering what sights you’ll encounter on your Seine River Cruise and whether it’s worth your time and money. Rest assured, it’s a valuable experience.

Not only does a Seine cruise offer a picturesque overview of Paris in a condensed timeframe, but you’ll also glide past many of the city’s major landmarks.

  • the Tour Eiffel
  • Musée d’Orsay
  • Musée de Louvre
  • Île de la Cité
  • Grand Palais
  • Petit Palais

Your Seine river cruise will also pass through more than 20 bridges – some of them are the most famous bridges in France , like the Pont Neuf, the Pont Alexandre III, and the Pont des Arts.

Paris Seine Cruise: Travel Tips

Be Prepared for the Weather: Don’t overlook weather conditions. Pack sunscreen for sunny days or an umbrella and raincoat for unexpected showers. Keep in mind you may have to wait in an uncovered queue before boarding. ( Find the latest weather forecast here ).

Mobile Vouchers: Check in advance if your chosen tour accepts mobile vouchers. Some tours still require printed vouchers, which can be inconvenient if you’re already on the go.

Dress Code: If you’ve opted for a lunch or dinner cruise, be sure to review the dress code requirements to avoid any boarding issues.

Consider the Paris City Pass : Before finalizing your booking, take a look here at the Paris City Pass . It covers over 60 activities, including the Seine cruise. If you plan on multiple activities, the pass often offers better value. ( Click here for a full list of included activities ).

There you have it—the top Seine River Cruises in Paris, tailored to fit a variety of preferences and budgets. Whether you’re in the mood for an indulgent dinner cruise or just a laid-back scenic ride along the Seine, both are bound to be highlights of your Parisian adventure. Enjoy 🙂

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PS: Check out these posts, they will help you plan your trip to Paris

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FAQ Seine River Cruise in Paris

The standard 1h Seine River Cruise with one of the Bateaux Mouchesstarts at €16. Lunch cruises start from €60 and Dinner Cruises from €80.

A Seine Cruise is a lovely way to see Paris. It is very popular and one of the best things to do in Paris. Because while you sit relaxed on board, you see some of the most spectacular sights of Paris: The Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, Pont Neuf and many more.

The standard Seine River Sightseeing Cruise in Paris takes 1h. If you opt in for a Lunch or Dinner Cruise on the Seine, allow 1.5 to 2.5 hours. To be on time, make sure to arrive 15-30 Minutes in advance.

To be on the save sight, it’s best to book the Paris Seine Cruise in advance. The standard Cruises are often not dated, and you can use the voucher whenever it suits you. Dinner and Lunch Cruises need to be booked in advance, as they sell out very quickly.

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Home > Paris Attractions > Paris River Cruise Guide – What is the Best Seine River Cruise in Paris?

Paris River Cruise Guide – What is the Best Seine River Cruise in Paris?

Glide by the famous sights of paris on a river seine cruise.

The Seine River (La Seine in French) winds its way through the heart of Paris, bisecting the city from east to west. The Seine River is the origin of Paris , and its development is uniquely tied to the River.

If you visit Paris for the first time , book a Seine River cruise to experience the city from a different perspective and spot some of the most famous landmarks in Paris along the waterway. This is especially beautiful on a Seine River night cruise, when the historical monuments are lit up: the Eiffel Tower , the Musée d’Orsay , the Conciergerie ,  Notre Dame , and more.

There are many Seine River cruises in Paris. Some of these Paris River cruises are only for sightseeing, while others come with dinner and music for an all-included magical experience. You can even craft your own River Seine cruise by chartering a boat for you and your crew! Go on reading for the best Seine River cruises Paris has to offer, with our best tips to help you decide.

Best Seine River Cruises Overview

Day river seine cruises, private seine river tours, seine river dinner cruises, seine sunset cruises, seine river cruises for families.

Table of Contents:

Paris River Cruise – How it Works

Seine river cruises in paris – itinerary & map.

  • Best Seine River Cruise Paris (Sightseeing Only)

Best Private Seine River Cruise

Best seine river dinner cruise.

  • Best Seine Sunset Cruise ( Seine River Night Cruise Without Dinner)

Best Seine River Cruise for Families

Seine boat tour – best tips.

A Seine River cruise is one of the top attractions in the city. We recommend taking a Paris River cruise in the following Paris itineraries:

  • 1 day in Paris itinerary
  • 2 days in Paris itinerary
  • 3 days in Paris itinerary
  • 4 days in Paris itinerary
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Many boat companies are working on the River Seine, and they all cover the same itinerary, more or less. The difference between them remains in the starting point, the options, and of course, the experience onboard.

Seine River cruise times are more or less the same for all companies, from 10 am to 10.30 pm.

All the boats are adapted to disabled visitors (wheelchair accessible).

A Paris Seine River cruise (only sightseeing) usually lasts from 60 minutes to 90 minutes, and they are available every day of the week. Some of these cruises offer a glass of champagne, other drinks, and snacks as an option.

A Seine night cruise can be with or without dinner. A Seine River dinner cruise usually lasts from 1hr 15 min to 3 hours, and it comes with or without music. Most of these River Seine cruises with dinner offer different menus with vegetarian and vegan dishes, and this is something that you need to specify during the booking process.

With few exceptions, the itinerary is very similar to all the Seine River cruises in Paris, covering the part of the Seine River that goes through the central Arrondissements of Paris , from the Eiffel Tower in Paris 7 to Ile de Saint Louis in Paris 4.

Boats go downstream following the Seine’s Left Bank, and they turn after Ile de Saint Louis to go upstream following the Seine’s Right Bank.

Along the way, visitors can admire the following top sights: the Eiffel Tower, Assemblée Nationale, Musée d’Orsay, Institut de France, Cité de la Mode, Hôtel de Ville, Notre Dame, Conciergerie, Concorde, Grand Palais, and Palais Chaillot.

With some companies, and usually with the Seine River dinner cruises, the boats sail further to the Statue of Liberty on the Ile-aux-Cygnes.

The map below shows the point of departure of the best Seine cruises, Paris.

best boat cruise in paris

Click here to view this Seine River Cruises Map on Google

  • Yellow: Bateaux Mouches
  • Red: Bateaux Parisiens
  • Green: Vedettes de Paris
  • Purple: Batobus Paris
  • Black: Paris en Scène
  • Light Green: Paris Duck Tour (tour on an amphibious bus)
  • Blue: Paris Canal (Seine River + Canal Saint-Martin)
  • Brown: Trattoria On Seine (Italian meal + panoramic rooftop)

Best Seine River Cruise Paris ( Sightseeing Only)

Best combo tickets with a paris seine cruise (sightseeing only).

Save money with a Paris combo ticket! Combo tickets usually include 2 or 3 top attractions in Paris at a discounted price (usually 10-15% off).

1. Bâteaux Mouches

Bateaux Mouches Paris

The company Bateaux Mouches has been operating on the Seine River since 1949! The iconic Bâteaux Mouches is today the 4th most visited paid attraction in Paris, only after the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre Museum, and the Centre Georges Pompidou.

The Bâteaux Mouches can transport up to 600 passengers. They are the big double-decker boats with orange seats sailing on the River.

With this Seine River cruise, Paris’ top landmarks won’t have more secrets for you as the cruise is complemented by a pre-recorded narration in multiple languages. You can also book a glass of champagne.

  • Duration:  1 hour 10 minutes
  • Departure /arrival point: Pont de l’Alma Rive Droite – Port de la Conférence, Paris 8 Right Bank
  • Adapted toilets on the pier, a removable ramp for access from the pier to the boat, and no steps on board. No adapted toilets on board.

Click here to Book this Seine River Cruise

2. Bâteaux Parisiens

Bateaux Parisiens

The Bateaux Parisiens propose similar boat tours to the Bâteaux Mouches. The fleet consists of fully glazed boats for an amazing panoramic view, and they can transport up to 250 passengers. Visitors can also stay outdoors on the deck, but space is limited.

Starting from the Eiffel Tower, this Paris Seine River cruise comes with an individual audio guide that is available in 13 languages. The cruise lasts approximately 1 hour, and there’s the option to book it with a glass of champagne.

  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Departure /arrival point: Port de la Conférence, Paris 7 Left Bank
  • Adapted toilets on the pier. Some boats have wheelchair access on the main deck and inside, while others can be accessed through a temporary wheelchair ramp. For adapted toilets also onboard, ask for “Juliette Greco” or “Brigitte Bardot” boats.

TIP: This Seine cruise is included in the Paris City Card . If you are considering buying this fantastic card, this is an extra reason to get it now!

3. Vedettes de Paris

Vedettes de Paris

The Vedettes de Paris are elegant and smaller boats that transport fewer people. During the 1-hour Seine River tour, learn about the history of Paris and the sights along the cruise with audio commentary.

This is the best Seine River cruise Paris has to offer to avoid crowds. The onboard bar offers interesting French-inspired apéritifs and snacks. If you already know that you will fall into the temptation of trying some, we recommend booking them online with your ticket: usually, they are more expensive if paid onboard.

TIP: This Seine boat tour is included in the Paris Seine Pass . If you are considering buying this fantastic card, this is an extra reason to get it now!

  • Departure /arrival point: Port de Suffren, Paris 7 Left Bank (see our Google map)
  • Options: sightseeing cruise, sightseeing cruise + glass of champagne, sightseeing cruise + drink and /or snack
  • Passengers with wheelchairs can be accommodated with the help of a staff member if passengers are able to climb the 3 steps. There are adapted toilets at the embarkation point and on the boats Paris Etoile, Paris Iéna, and Paris Trocadéro

4. Batobus Paris (Seine River Cruise Hop-On Hop-Off)

best boat cruise in paris

This  Seine River cruise hop-on, hop-off is the less touristy option available on the Seine River, without audio commentary. It is a great alternative to the classic Paris hop-on hop-off bus because it avoids the traffic jams on the streets of Paris.

This is the best Paris River cruise for a more local experience. It is possible to get on the Batobus Paris as often as you want over a specified period of time without buying new tickets.

Batobus is the Seine River tour that we know best because years ago, it was included in the monthly Navigo Pass Metro ticket. It was fun to sail the River Seine from time to time!

  • Duration: 1 day or 2 days, with unlimited trips
  • Departure /arrival point: passengers can hop on and hop off the boat from any of its 9 different stops: Eiffel Tower, Invalides/Pont Alexandre III, Musée d’Orsay, St Germain des Prés, Notre-Dame, Jardin des Plantes /Cité de la Mode, Hôtel de Ville, Louvre, Champs-Elysées.
  • Only the Eiffel Tower and Louvre stops are accessible to those in wheelchairs. The other stops have too many steps for wheelchairs.

5. Paris Duck Tour (Tour on an Amphibious Bus)

The Paris Duck Tour is the latest addition to this list of Seine River cruises in Paris. This small bus, for only 35 people, can also navigate along the Seine River, so you have a bus tour and a Seine boat tour for the price of one! Actually, the splash!, when the bus enters the water is one of the highlights of this unique Seine boat tour.

The itinerary is also different from the other Seine cruises. On the bus, you will pass by iconic sites like the Eiffel Tower, the Invalides, the Alexandre III Bridge, the Petit Palais and Grand Palais, the Champs-Elysées, the Arc de Triomphe, and more.

The splash! takes place on the outskirts of Paris, where you can discover the Seine Musicale, the Parc de Saint-Cloud, and the Bois de Boulogne. Count on sailing about 20 minutes of the 1 hr 45 min that lasts the full tour.

Another (big) difference is the guide, who was hand-picked for his humor and passion to make this tour fun and memorable.

  • Duration: 1 hr 45 min
  • Departure /arrival point: Place Vauvan, in Paris 7 (see our Google map)
  • Options: sightseeing cruise only (no food or drinks)
  • No toilets onboard

This is a new and unique tour much coveted by tourists and locals (yep, we also like trying new experiences!). Because of the small capacity of the bus, the Paris Duck Tours sold out very fast, so it is usually necessary to book many weeks in advance. If you don’t find this Seine River tour available for your dates, consider this Seine River + Canal Saint-Martin Duck Tour or this Paris to Versailles Duck Tour also with their unique amphibious bus.

Click here to book this Seine River Cruise

6. River Cruise Paris with Champagne Tastings (Maxim’s + Ô Château)

Seine River in Paris

This 1.5-hour Cruise with Champagne Tastings with a Professional Sommelier is the perfect combo for a unique afternoon in Paris. Board Maxim’s Bâteau Ivre , decorated in the Art Nouveau style, and enjoy the tastings of three champagnes carefully selected by the chef sommelier of Ô Château .

This is a more intimate and fun Paris Seine cruise, and it is set in a Belle Epoque atmosphere. Your sommelier will also share stories about the monuments you see along the cruise while you enjoy the breathtaking view of Paris from the water’s edge.

  • Duration: 1 hr 30 min
  • Departure /arrival point: Le Bon Port, at the foot of Notre Dame, in Paris 4 (see our Google Map)

Click here to Book this Seine River Cruise with Champagne Tastings

7. Canal Saint-Martin + Seine Cruise

best boat cruise in paris

This Paris River cruise navigates the waters of the Seine River and Canal Saint-Martin. Admire classics of Paris, like the Orsay Museum, the Louvre, and Notre Dame, before heading to the tunnels and locks of Paris’ most picturesque Canal.

This is a one-way cruise that starts at the Orsay Museum (Paris 7) and ends at Parc de la Villette in Paris 19. Then, you can take the opportunity to explore this less-touristy district of Paris, with interesting sights like the Parc de la Villette, Parc Buttes-Chaumont, and the banks of the Bassin de la Villette. If you prefer, you can sail from La Villette to the Orsay Museum in central Paris by booking this tour .

  • Duration: 2 hrs 30 min
  • Departure /arrival point: Port de Solferino, in Paris 7 Left Bank /La Villette or vice-versa (see our Google map)
  • Options: sightseeing cruise only

Click here to book this Seine River + Canal Saint-Martin Cruise

Seine Cruise - Emily in Paris

Craft your own experience and book a private cruise on the Seine River. Admire Paris’ most beautiful avenue while sipping a glass of wine or enjoying a picnic onboard.

There’s no best private Seine River cruise; it depends on what you are looking for! You can book this private Seine boat tour which follows a similar itinerary to the other Seine boat tours, or choose another boat more adapted for you and your cruise (the map on this page shows where the boats are moored).

Most of the boats for rent in Paris come with a skipper, so let him do the hard work while you sit back, relax, and have fun with your partner, family, or group.

With this kind of river cruise, Paris will delight you. You can bring your own food and wine for a picnic or a French apéritif . Sometimes, you can purchase them as an add-on during the booking process.

Click here to book a Private Seine Boat Tour

Seine River at Night

A Paris night cruise with dinner is one of the best things to do in Paris at night . Enjoy the views and some of the famous foods in Paris while sailing through the city’s most beautiful avenue.

Some boat companies offer two Seine River dinner cruises a day, the first starting around 6 pm and the second starting at 8.30 pm or later.

The first Seine River dinner cruise is usually less expensive. This is because the menu options are more limited, and the cruise is shorter. The second dinner cruise is fancier and usually features live music.

For some people, 70 minutes is long enough to have their meal while enjoying some of Paris’s most beautiful sights. Others will find that it is a bit rushed.

Another important thing to consider is the time of the cruise, especially during the summer . If you want to do this Seine cruise at night, check out the Paris sunset times and plan your Seine night cruise accordingly:

  • The 6 pm Seine River night cruise finishes around 7.10 pm. This means that during the summer, you will be sailing in daylight.
  • With the 8 pm Seine night cruise, you can be sure to enjoy the Paris illuminations during the tour, at least for the last part of the cruise.

The dress code for a dinner cruise in Paris is usually smart casual (check what to wear in Paris here ), but nobody will complain if you wear your best dress or suit!

Find the best dinner cruise in Paris for you from the options below.

1. Bateaux Parisiens Dinner Cruise

Bateaux Parisiens offers a Seine River cruise, a night option with dinner, starting at 8.30 pm.

In general, this Seine River dinner cruise gets good reviews for its food, drinks, and kind staff. The 3-course meal comes with different starters, main dishes, and dessert options, and all the proposals include a glass of champagne. There is also a vegetarian option available.

This Seine River dinner cruise features live music and lasts 2 hours and 30 minutes. The price varies depending on the menu and the placement of your table.

MAKE IT SPECIAL: we suggest paying a little extra to be seated along the windows (Service Privilege) or at the bows of the boat (Service Premier). It is well worth it! 

Click here to Book this Seine River Dinner Cruise

2. Paris en Scène Dinner Cruise

Paris en Scène is perhaps the lesser-known boat company proposing Seine River dinner cruises in Paris. However, their proposal is very attractive, flexible, and definitely one of the best Paris River cruises with dinner.

First of all, the boats are imagined like a theatre where the Seine River is the main stage.  All the seats are arranged in front of the view to admire the Seine River and all the monuments illuminated along the way. The passengers are comfortably seated in large club chairs, and they dine side by side on tables specially designed to enjoy both the view and the meal. Boats also have a bar and a huge open sky terrace so visitors can get the most out of the Seine River during the cruise.

With prices starting at 59€, this is definitely the least expensive dinner cruise in Paris. The meals are Parisian bistro-style, all cooked on-site, and with fresh and seasonal produce. Enjoy a 2-course menu starter, main, and dessert at your window-facing table, and upgrade it with wine or champagne.

3. Bateaux Mouches Dinner Cruise

Bateaux Mouches offers a River Seine cruise with dinner starting at 8.30 pm. In general, this river cruise gets good reviews for food, wine, and entertainment.

The all-inclusive menu offers 3-5 different options (depending on the chosen menu) of starter, main dish, and cheese or dessert, and there’s always at least one vegetarian option for each course. Beverages and coffee or tea are included.

Bâteaux Mouches offers a romantic dinner cruise lulled by the sound of the piano and violin. Enjoy a three-course menu designed to bring you the best of French cuisine and good live music with your best company in the City of Light.

Best Seine Sunset Cruise (Seine River Night Cruise Without Dinner)

For those who wish to cruise along the Seine River at sunset – at night, admiring Paris illuminated, without having dinner, there are a few options competing for the best Seine River night cruise without dinner.

An important thing to consider for a Paris night cruise is the sunset time, as the sunset in Paris in summer is quite late. If you want to take a Seine sunset cruise – night cruise, check out the Paris sunset times and book accordingly.

Both the Happy Hour Evening Cruise on the Seine and the Apéritif Cruise on the Seine are mid-size boats that come with music and a bar onboard. The difference between these two Seine cruises is the duration of the cruise, with a longer itinerary for the Happy Hour Evening Cruise. This Happy Hour Evening Cruise also offers the option to buy some food.

TIP: Save money with the Paris Seine Pass , a combo ticket that includes the Apéritif Cruise on the Seine mentioned above, access to the Sainte-Chapelle and the Orsay Museum , and a 10% discount on other Paris attractions.

best boat cruise in paris

What is the best Seine River cruise in Paris for families? There are a couple of Paris River cruises especially designed for families with children. They both last 1 hour, and the commentaries are more adapted for the little ones.

The Paris Cruise for Kids (with Quiz) comes with a booklet – a Paris quiz for children, but it is in French.

The best Seine River cruise for families is, in our opinion, the Family Cruise on the Seine . This Seine River tour comes with a funny guide (English & French) specialized in capturing the imagination of the little ones.

Conicergerie - View from the Seine River

»  While you can buy tickets for most of the sightseeing cruises the same day at the dock, you may be able to save money by purchasing it online in advance. Be sure to print the confirmation email out and take it with you to claim your ticket at the dock.

»  First arrived, first served! Tickets for sightseeing cruises do not have a seat assigned, so try to arrive well in advance to find a good seat to admire the Seine River.

»  On a Seine night cruise with dinner, it is worth paying a little extra to be seated by the window and enjoy a better view.

» The Paris City Card tourist card includes a Seine River cruise. If you are considering buying this fantastic card, this is an extra reason to get it now! Find all the Paris City Card benefits here .

» Seine cruises might be canceled if the water level is too high or too low to operate. In this case, you will be given a couple of options, including a full refund.

So there you have it, our selection of the best Seine River cruises in Paris, so you can find the best River Seine cruise for you and your crew. Which Paris Seine cruise would you like to take right now?

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Best Seine River Cruises in Paris, Best Cruises on the River Seine, Sightseeing Seine Cruises in Paris, Seine River Dinner Cruises, Seine Night Cruises

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Quirky parisian explorers with a preference for lesser-known sights, we are continuously looking for new ideas and tips to bring you the best of the city of light read more about us ., we’re elisa, norbert, valérie, and cédric, four travel bloggers and friends living in paris. quirky explorers with a preference for the local side of our city and its lesser-known sights, we are continuously looking for new ideas to enjoy the best of paris & around . do you want to go beyond the louvre museum or the eiffel tower keep clicking for first-hand information & our best tips learn more about us.

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Dinner cruises: Bistro style Seine dinner cruise

Best River Seine cruises

Forget the Metro: Paris’s beautiful river is the best way to see the city’s sights – and beyond

It might be chock-full of tree-lined boulevards and covered by the sprawling Métropolitain network, but no trip to Paris is complete without a relaxing ride along the Seine. Trust us. Whether you want to take in the sights and attractions with a bottle of champagne, or prefer to hop on and off as you please, there’s a cruise out there to suit all tastes and budgets. In fact we’ve lined up the very best of them here. All you have to do is find your sea (okay, river) legs and hop aboard! Setting sail on a River Seine cruise really is one of the best things to do when visiting Paris.

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Best cruises on the River Seine

Champagne tasting on a Seine River cruise

1.  Champagne tasting on a Seine River cruise

What could be more pleasureable than taking in the delightful Parisian sights while sipping on a bit of bubbly? Few things, we'll wager. On this 60-minute river cruise, you'll sail down the Seine in style, passing major landmarks like the Louvre, Eiffel Tower and Musee d’Orsay.

Bateaux Parisiens Seine River dinner cruise

2.  Bateaux Parisiens Seine River dinner cruise

Let’s face it, cruises aren’t cheap so if you find one that hasn’t got that certain  je ne sais quoi then it’s not worth your money.   Thankfully, this beautifully decked out boat has you floating past all the sights with a glass of champers in hand, and a live band to keep you company while you tuck into a superb three-course à la carte menu. Tres glam, non?

Skip-the-line Eiffel Tower and Seine River cruise

3.  Skip-the-line Eiffel Tower and Seine River cruise

Like every world-famous landmark, the Eiffel Tower has become a victim of its own success, and one major frustration when visiting is is the snaking queues to climb up to its viewing galleries. That’s why the savvier visitor to Paris will book this cruise. Once you’ve whizzed up the elegant landmark and snapped a selfie with the Parisian skyline, stroll over to the banks of the Seine river for a close-up of all the sights by boat. 

Seine River hop-on hop-off sightseeing cruise

4.  Seine River hop-on hop-off sightseeing cruise

Take in the City of Lights at a leisurely pace via the Seine River sightseeing cruise. This boat ride, which stops at nine points along the river – including Eiffel Tower, Musée d'Orsay, Notre Dame Cathedral – lets you hop on and off as you please. This not only saves on travel spending, but avoids you having to navigate the Metro network too.

Paris illuminations river cruise

5.  Paris illuminations river cruise

Explore the City of Lights in all its dazzling glory via this after-dark cruise, which takes you past floodlit monuments, luminous bridges, not forgetting all those pretty city lights glittering on the water. Oh, and let’s not forget one other pretty major highlight, which is the unbelievably cheap price. Parfait!

Bateaux Parisiens Cruise: quick entry ticket

6.  Bateaux Parisiens Cruise: quick entry ticket

Spent all your euros on fancy plonk? See the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame Cathedral, the Louvre, and more from this glass-topped trimaran, which is affordable and informative – if you opt for the audio guide. There’s a real-life human guide aboard too, to provide additional info. 

Versailles, Paris city tour and Seine River cruise day trip

7.  Versailles, Paris city tour and Seine River cruise day trip

Kill three birds with one stone on this tour. It begins out of town at the opulent Palace of Versailles, takes you up to the summit of the Eiffel Tower and ends with a relaxing one-hour cruise along the Seine. Perfect for anyone who is only in Paris for a short while, but is determined to do as much in their scant time as possible. 

Eiffel Tower, Seine River cruise and Moulin Rouge show

8.  Eiffel Tower, Seine River cruise and Moulin Rouge show

If a fancy dinner up the Eiffel Tower, a glitzy show at the Moulin Rouge and a calming cruise along the Seine are top of your Paris to-do list – and if they are, more power to you – then this tour is the one for you. Dig out your sparkliest glad rags and hop aboard! 

Seine and Marne river loop cruise

9.  Seine and Marne river loop cruise

Follow in the footsteps of the Impressionists with this six-hour tranquil cruise on the Seine and Marne rivers (the later being a smaller tributuary that makes its way through the east of the capital). The boat will be laid out for lunch so you can tuck into your baguette surrounded by the scenery that inspired some of France’s greatest artists.

Seine River cruise and Paris canals tour

10.  Seine River cruise and Paris canals tour

Explore the city's canalways; sailing beneath old tunnels steeped in character, through locks that date back tot he nineteenth century and under beautiful bridges. The trip lasts two and half hours and sets off in the morning and afternoon, depending on your preference.

Three-in-one: Eiffel Tower, Louvre and Seine cruise tickets

11.  Three-in-one: Eiffel Tower, Louvre and Seine cruise tickets

When it comes to your travels, time is precious. So whatever time you save skipping the queues, you can spend enjoying the sights themselves. With this tour, you get to smugly saunter past the chumps waiting in line at the Eiffel Tower AND the Louvre Museum, before chilling on a one-hour cruise of the Seine. Winning! 

Seine River cruise, Paris illuminations and dinner close to the Champs-Elysees

12.  Seine River cruise, Paris illuminations and dinner close to the Champs-Elysees

Ramp up the romance – you are in Paris, after all – with a lamp-lit cruise along the Seine before hopping on a coach that will take you on a route around the city. The tour ends with you tucking into a three-course meal and a glass of wine, overlooking the Arc de Triomphe on the Champs-Élysées.

Paris Seine River Paris Night Bicycle Tour & River Cruise

13.  Paris Seine River Paris Night Bicycle Tour & River Cruise

There’s nothing better conclusion to a day of cycling around the streets of Paris than a boat cruise to rest your aching legs. Oh... and a well-deserved glass of plonk, of course. Combine both on this guided tour and you can contentedly sip your drink as you cruise past sights including the gorgeous Saint-Chapelle on the Ile de la Cité and the Latin Quarter.

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Seine River cruises with dinner offer guests some of the best panoramic views of the city

Paris River Cruise: 10+ Top Rated Tours in 2024

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If you’re looking for the perfect way to experience the City of Lights, a Paris river cruise is an ideal choice. From the comfort of your own boat, you can take in some of the city’s most stunning sights while enjoying a leisurely journey along one of Europe’s most iconic rivers.

But, as you’ve probably figured out by now there are actually dozens of companies that offer Paris boat tours… which makes figuring out which River Seine cruise is right for you, well… pretty difficult!

Fortunately, I’ve created this list of the top-rated sightseeing cruises for your next trip! From lunch cruises to epic dinner and dancing cruises, you’ll have everything you need to make an informed decision on the one that’s right for you.

Romantic dinner cruises in Paris happen after dark when the Eiffel Tower is doing its light show

Don’t have time to read the entire post? No problem!

This Bateaux Parisiens Seine River Gourmet Dinner & Sightseeing Cruise is easily the #1 Paris boat tour on this list! With nearly 3,000 5-star reviews and a 3-course à la carte dinner with endless wine and champagne, this Paris river cruise is our #1 pick !

Not to mention, whether it’s day or night, there are plenty of attractions to see and experiences to be had on this beautiful stretch of water. From the Notre Dame Cathedral to the Eiffel Tower and even Le Louvre, you’ll get one of the most unique perspectives of Paris!

With its charming bridges, picturesque quayside, and exquisite views across Paris’ skyline, a Seine River cruise offers something truly special.

So, let’s jump into finding the Paris river cruise that’s right for you!

10 Top Rated Paris River Cruises

🚢1. eiffel tower, seine river dinner cruise, moulin rouge show.

Some Paris river cruises include stops at the Moulin Rouge or the Eiffel Tower

What’s Included? ⤵️

  • 7 hours in duration
  • Choice of either a glass or half bottle of champagne
  • Experience a traditional Parisian cabaret show at the Moulin Rouge
  • Choose between dinner at the Eiffel Tower or on a Paris river cruise
  • Priority access to the 2nd floor of the Eiffel Tower
  • 1.5 hour cruise on the Seine River

Looking for the most bang for your buck? This adventurous tour takes you on three iconic experiences around the City of Lights! From taking in the panoramic views from the second floor of the Eiffel Tower and enjoying a classic cabaret show at the Moulin Rouge to embarking on a 90-minute Seine River Paris cruise, this tour knows how to plan a good time. With over 1,100 5-star reviews, this is one tour you should have at the top of your list when visiting Paris!

🚢2. Bateaux Parisiens Seine River Gourmet Lunch & Sightseeing Cruise

best boat cruise in paris

  • 2 hours in duration
  • Free glass of local champagne
  • 3-course à la carte lunch with wine
  • Live music throughout the ride
  • Convenient departure point

Another phenomenal boat tour in Paris with nearly 1,100 50-star reviews , this classic Bateaux Parisians boat ride offers a gourmet à la carte lunch and some lovely music to accompany your journey around the city. Enjoy a free glass of local champagne as you board to kick off your 2 hour cruise around some of Paris’ top sights!

🍷If the wine is catching your eye on this cruise along the Seine River, be sure to check out one of these 15+ Top-Rated Wine Tours in France for 2024 ! They offer popular wine tastings, visits to numerous vineyards, and the chance to learn more about the art of French winemaking!

🚢3. Bateaux Parisiens Seine River Gourmet Dinner & Sightseeing Cruise

Seine River cruises with dinner offer guests some of the best panoramic views of the city

  • 2.5 hours in duration
  • 3-course à la carte dinner with wine
  • Enjoy a complimentary glass of champagne (if option chosen)
  • Live entertainment and music

On this exciting evening dinner cruise with Bateaux Parisiens , you will find yourself gliding past many of Paris’ most iconic sights all while dancing to live music (including a singer) and stuffing yourself with delectable French cuisine. Paired nicely with wine and even a glass of champagne if you so choose, this is easily one of the best tours on this list… which is probably why they’ve earned Viator’s Badge of Excellence award and have nearly 3,000 5-star reviews ! If you’re looking for a romantic dinner cruise to impress a special someone on your upcoming trip to Paris, this one surely won’t disappoint.

🗼These beautiful dinner cruises are just one of the items I mention in this list of 33 Magical Things To Do in Paris at Night !

🚢4. Paris Seine River Dinner Cruise & Live Music by Bateaux Mouches

best boat cruise in paris

  • 3 hours in duration
  • Traditional French 4-course dinner
  • Beverages & coffee/tea
  • Live music onboard

Looking for a classic, all-inclusive dinner cruise through Paris’ Seine River for you and someone special? This is it! Not only will you get an abundantly romantic boat ride in Paris , but also a 4-course French meal and endless drinks while on board. Perfect for friends and family, couples, Europe honeymooners , and even solo travelers, this tour has over 1,100 5-star reviews and always books up fast!

🚢5. Paris Gourmet Dinner Seine River Cruise with Singer and DJ Set

Some Paris river cruises include music and dancing or even a DJ

  • 3.5 hours in duration
  • Live musician/singer and DJ set
  • Gourmet dinner
  • Panoramic views from the terrace

Rightfully earning Viator’s Badge of Excellence, this exciting 3.5 hour evening cruise along the Seine River is sure to delight everyone in your group! Paired perfectly with a popular singer and full DJ set, you’ll be enjoying your evening floating down the Seine with a delicious dinner, a sparkling beverage, and epic views of the city from the enormous rooftop terrace!

🚢6. Paris Seine River Gourmet Dinner Cruise with Champagne

If you want to cruise the Seine River, then a Paris river cruise is the perfect choice

  • 90 minutes in duration
  • Gourmet 3-course dinner with Champagne (lunch option also available)
  • All alcoholic beverages
  • Coffee and tea
  • Option to add the romance package (rose petals, window seating, & personal photos)

Thinking of popping the question to your partner on a trip to Paris? This gorgeous 1.5 hour Paris river cruise actually offers a romance package to help you out! Fitted with rose petals, preferred seating, and even a private photographer to capture the moment, they remove the stress of planning all of these small details out in advance. Talk about the ultimate Paris proposal package! Or, if you’re simply planning a nice evening out in the city, you’ll be treated to a delectable French meal and unlimited alcohol during your sightseeing cruise.

🚢7. Paris Seine River Private Boat Tour

Some Paris boat tours go by the Eiffel Tower

  • Fully private tour for you and your group
  • Bring your own snacks & drinks
  • Pet friendly!

Want to avoid the chaos of traveling with dozens of other tourists down the Seine? While it is nice to enjoy the all-inclusive options, sometimes a private Paris boat tour like this one can offer a more personalized and fun experience. Free to bring your own dinner and drinks and even your furry friend, this is the ultimate choice for anyone looking to drop a Paris proposal or simply want to enjoy the ride with just their friends and family. Easily one of the best Seine River night cruise options on this list, this tour has earned Viator’s Badge of Excellence award for good reason!

🚢8. Paris at the First Lodges – Ducasse sur Seine Lunch Cruise

best boat cruise in paris

  • Exquisite views of the city and ensured window seats
  • Four-course lunch of gourmet French cuisine
  • Extensive wine list to choose from
  • Ride on an electric boat that emits 10x fewer CO2 emissions than a traditional diesel boat

Are you or someone else in your group determined to be environmentally friendly on your Paris river cruise? If so, then we should be friends because I’m always looking for the lowest-emission tours available too! Fortunately for both of us, this tour is free of fuel and offers a glorious 4-course lunch and wine list for your afternoon glide along the Seine! With guaranteed window seats and an utter lack of pollution, this tour will leave you feeling guilt-free ( well, almost… it depends on how much wine you have! 😉)

🚢9. Paris at the First Lodges – Ducasse sur Seine Dinner Cruise

  • Immaculate views of the city
  • Guaranteed window seats
  • Four or five-course dinner of gourmet French cuisine
  • Fully electric boat

Similar to the lunch cruise, the Ducasse sur Seine dinner cruise is perhaps one of the most romantic dinner cruises on this list! Offering the choice between a 4 or 5-course evening meal, stunning views of the city at night, and a refreshing lack of fuel emissions, this is one tour that almost never has leftover space.

🚢10. Paris in a Day with Eiffel Tower, Musée d’Orsay & River Cruise

best boat cruise in paris

  • 9 hours in duration
  • Small group tour
  • Skip-the-line tickets to the Eiffel Tower 
  • Skip-the-line tickets to the Musée d’Orsay
  • Professional and local English-speaking tour guide
  • One hour Paris Seine River cruise

Looking to take a Paris boat tour and see the Eiffel Tower and the Musée d’Orsay all in one? Now you can! With numerous skip-the-line perks to some of Paris’ most iconic sights and a one-hour cruise on the Seine, this Paris in a day tour is the perfect way to spend a full day in the City of Lights!

🚢11. Paris Seine River Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Cruise

best boat cruise in paris

  • Choose between a 24 or 48-hour pass
  • Heated boats in winter
  • Rooftop terrace option available in summer
  • Knowledgeable crew

The hop-on hop-off boat in Paris is easily one of the best Seine River night cruises without dinner you can take ( it actually has over 1,300 5-star reviews )! Keeping things ultra simple, you can choose a 2-hour ride on either a one-day or two-day option, though nothing onboard is included. If you’re trying to stay on a budget, then this is by far the best option! You’ll get the chance to see numerous sights across Paris, and have the option to hop on or off the Seine River cruise at the Eiffel Tower, L’Académie Lime, Musée d’Orsay, Quai Malaquais, Quai de Montebello, Quai Saint-Bernard, Quai de l’Hôtel de Ville, Quai du Louvre, or the Concorde – Quai des Tuileries stops! Plus, with free cancelation up until 24 hours before departure ( just like most of the tours on this list ), there’s really no stress in reserving your spot.

FAQ: Paris River Cruise

In this next section, I’m going to answer some important questions that are essential to your Paris boat tour!

How Much is a River Cruise on the Seine?

best boat cruise in paris

A Seine River cruise in Paris can cost you anywhere from $20 to $130 or more , depending on the type of cruise you choose. Lunch cruises tend to be cheaper than dinner and dancing cruises, while private boat tours are usually the most expensive ( rightfully so! )

It may be tempting to save some money on your dinner cruise and book the cheapest one, but unfortunately in Paris, and most of Europe for that matter, you get what you pay for .

Having walked along the Seine my fair share of times at this point, I will say that it is very obvious which boats are for budget travelers versus which boats ( more like cruise ships ) are for those who paid for dinner, dancing, or some champagne.

The overall cleanliness of the boat will vary as well as its comfort level, the onboard food and beverage selection, and the length of the trip.

Thus, it’s recommended to budget for this outing on your Paris itinerary rather than trying to save some cash in this department.

How Long Does a Seine River Cruise Take?

Most Seine River cruises in Paris take between 1-2 hours

Most Seine River cruises last between 1-2 hours , although some last up to 4 hours. If you’re looking for a shorter river cruise, opt for lunch cruises that usually last around 1 hour.

But, if you’re looking for something longer and more immersive, private boat tours as well as dinner and dancing cruises are the way to go!

If you only have one day in Paris , then a lunch tour is perhaps the best choice.

Can You See the Eiffel Tower from a Seine River Cruise?

the best time to go on a Paris river cruise is during the summer months

Yes, you usually will be able to see the Eiffel Tower from your Paris river cruise! Depending on which boat tour you take, you may have impressive views of the iconic structure from all angles.

Where do Paris Boat Tours Leave From?

best boat cruise in paris

Most Seine River cruises in Paris leave from the embankment near Quai de Montebello , which is right by Notre Dame Cathedral.

However, depending on the company you book with, there may be other departure points available such as the Port de la Bourdonnais which is near the Eiffel Tower.

What is the Beautiful River in Paris?

best boat cruise in paris

The name of the beautiful river in Paris is the Seine! The Seine is a 780 km-long river that runs through the north of France and is one of Europe’s most important rivers.

It flows through Paris from east to west, dividing the city into two halves known as the Left Bank and Right Bank.

Not only is the Seine beautiful, but it also serves an important purpose in terms of transportation.

Do I Need to Pre-book a Seine River Cruise?

Private Paris river cruises are the perfect choice for people ho want an exclusive tour

While you don’t technically have to pre-book a Seine River cruise, it is highly recommended . The best ones book up months in advance, so if you want to get a seat in one of the more popular cruises, it’s best to book your tickets early.

Otherwise, you’ll be stuck roaming the banks of the Seine for a boat with enough tickets left for everyone in your party, which I’m guessing isn’t how you want to spend your day in Paris.

By booking in advance, you’ll save yourself time, stress, and even money!

Yes, you read that right. Many of the Seine River cruises offer discounts and deals for purchasing tickets online ahead of time, so this ultimately is the best way to manage your reservations.

Do River Cruise Prices Include Airfare?

Seine River boat tours don't include airfare

No, none of the Paris river cruises on this list or any that are available along the Seine include airfare in their price.

These tour companies aren’t all-inclusive vacation planners, so you would need to handle airfare, lodging, and so forth either on your own or with an experienced travel agent prior to your trip.

What is the Cost of a Paris River Cruise?

Public Paris boat tours often get filled up months in advance

The cost of a cruise on the Seine River will vary depending on which boat tour you choose.

A private boat ride in Paris will run you upwards of $400+ per group ( which really isn’t that bad depending on how big the group is ), but you can also find tours such as the hop-on hop-off boat in Paris for as little as $20 per person.

Again, you get what you pay for, so if you book the ladder, don’t expect top-rated service, food, or beverages!

What Should I Pack for a Seine River Cruise?

Paris boat tours that include lunch occur in the middle of the day

Depending on if you’re taking a day lunch cruise or an evening dinner cruise, you’ll need slightly different items, though many will carry over from one to the next.

The list below includes everything for both, so remove any items that don’t make sense in relation to the cruise you pick.

  • Sunscreen/sunhat
  • Comfortable clothing and footwear
  • A light jacket for cooler evenings
  • Camera with a charged battery
  • Travel adapter (if needed)
  • Passport/ID
  • Cash or credit card for onboard purchases (food, drinks, French souvenirs )
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Snacks such as nuts, fruit, energy bars
  • Day backpack (if allowed – check with your company)

Do River Cruises in Paris include Dinner?

Most Paris river cruises go by the Notre Dame Cathedral

Some river cruises in Paris include dinner while others do not.

If you are hoping for a Paris boat tour that includes an evening meal, check out the Bateaux Parisiens Seine River Gourmet Dinner & Sightseeing Cruise , the Paris at the First Lodges – Ducasse sur Seine Dinner Cruise , or the Eiffel Tower Access with Seine River Dinner Cruise and Moulin Rouge Show .

When is the Best Time to Go on a Paris River Cruise?

If you're looking for a Paris river cruise, choose one with dinner

The best time to go on a Paris River cruise is during the spring and summer months when the weather will be warmer and sunnier .

The busiest times of year are usually during school holidays ( particularly in the months of June through August ), so if you’re looking for a more intimate experience try to plan your trip outside of these peak periods or opt for a private Paris river cruise.

For dinner cruises and private boat tours, late afternoon/early evening is the best time to go as you’ll get a chance to take in the city at night while enjoying your meal ( which means you’ll get to see the Eiffel Tower do its light show from the river! )

Just be sure to read this list of Paris safety tips if you’re planning on exploring the city at night.

For discounted and budget-friendly boat tours, opt for an early morning or late afternoon cruise when there are fewer people onboard.

✈️ For a more detailed explanation on when to go to the City of Lights, read up on The BEST Time to Visit Paris for Travelers in 2024 .

best boat cruise in paris

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Jump to the bottom of the post? No problem!

While there are dozens of reasons to visit Paris , a boat tour on the Seine is probably one of the most important!

Now that you know what to look for in a Paris Seine River cruise, it’s time to start planning your journey! From lunch cruises to dinner and dancing tours, there is something special waiting for everyone.

So take some time out of your busy schedule to explore this beautiful city from one of its most iconic rivers and book yourself a memorable Paris river cruise today!

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Hey there! I'm Emily Concannon, a seasoned globetrotter who has backpacked her way across over a dozen European countries, immersing myself in the diverse cultures, languages, and cuisines of the region.

My passion for travel transcends personal experiences; I've spent years learning how to transform my globetrotting knowledge into personalized itineraries for fellow travelers worldwide.

With a tally of 26 countries (and counting!) under my belt, my day job involves extensive research on different countries which often leads me to booking a new adventure every chance I get!

Cruise on the Seine with Bateaux Mouches

Discover our gift vouchers for a lunch or dinner cruise    

Cruise on the Seine with Bateaux Mouches

Compagnie des Bateaux Mouches® invites you on a cruise to explore Paris from its best avenue: the Seine. Book online for brunch or lunch in a quirky restaurant, a romantic dinner on the water or simply a guided tour for an original way to visit Paris’ most beautiful monuments, from one of our boats.

best boat cruise in paris

Explore Paris differently

Climb on board one of our boats and explore Paris from a different viewpoint, from the Seine. Sail past the foot of the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame de Paris, the Conciergerie, the Louvre and the Musée d’Orsay ...

best boat cruise in paris

Quirky restaurant and romantic cruise

Explore Paris over a delicious meal!

All our dishes are cooked by our own chefs using seasonal products in our boats’ modern kitchens.

Our à la carte menus include aperitif, starters, main courses, cheeses and desserts as well as a selection of wines matched to the dishes served, mineral water, non-alcoholic drinks and to finish, traditional teas and coffees accompanied by an after-dinner liqueur.

A romantic moment in one of the most unique restaurants in Paris

best boat cruise in paris

Rental and Privately Hiring a boat on the Seine

All year round Compagnie des Bateaux Mouches is available to host private and professional events by offering its boats for rent or private hire for daytime or evening. You will be assigned a dedicated team to assist you with organising your personal event, helping you hand-pick the services you require: from the wide choice of menus to various types of entertainment, and not forgetting personal decor.

best boat cruise in paris

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12 Best Seine River Cruises in Paris

Want to know the best Seine River cruises in Paris?

As one of the top things to do in Paris, there are surprisingly a lot of different options to choose from.

That’s why I’ve researched for you.

Not to mention, throughout my 9 trips to Paris, I’ve taken a couple of different ones myself so I know firsthand how they work and how relaxing they are to see the city and its landmarks.

There’s everything from sightseeing tours with audio guides to gourmet dinner cruises. A Paris boat tour is a popular thing to do in the City of Light and that’s why there are so many options. Which Seine River cruise is the best one for you will depend on your personal preferences. That’s why selected 12 of the best boat tours on the Seine.

Table of Contents

This post may contain affiliate links. If you click on an affiliate link, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a small commission if you decide to book. Please check out my  privacy policy and disclosure  for more information.

My Top 3 Picks of Best Seine River Cruises in Paris

Wondering what is the best Seine River cruise in Paris? If you don’t want to go through my list of 12, I’ve shared my top 3 picks.

river with tour boat on best river cruises in paris

River Seine Cruise

✅ Most popular

✅ Audio guide

✅ Budget-friendly

night with sunset on best river cruises in paris

Dinner Cruise

✅ Option to select seating

✅ 3-course a la carte dinner

✅ Special Occasion

eiffel tower and boat tour on river cruise in paris

Eiffel Tour & Seine Boat Tour Bundle

✅ 2-4-1 attractions

✅ Skip-the-line entry at Eiffel Tower

✅ Bundle pricing

Best 12 Tours: Cruises on the Seine River Paris

river with boat and buildings on best seine river cruises in paris

1. Tour 1: River Seine Cruise

⭐️  RATING:  4.3/5 Stars | ⏳  TOUR LENGTH:   1 hour | 📍 LOCATION: Eiffel Tower | ✅  BOOK IT: Best Seine River cruise for families

This Seine River Tour is an excellent way to discover Paris and its famous landmarks. With an audio guide commentary, you can learn about the history and architecture of iconic sites such as the Eiffel Tower, Musée d’Orsay, and Notre-Dame Cathedral while enjoying the stunning views from the water.

This tour isn’t going to break the travel budget. It’s one I take over and over again like to see the Paris autumn foliage in the fall.

Traveller’s Pro Tip : have your Smartphone fully charged and bring your headphones (or headphones are provided) to get the best Seine River cruise experience.

Check Prices and Availability!

2. Tour 2: Dinner Cruise on the Seine River

⭐️  RATING:  4.6/5 Stars | ⏳  TOUR LENGTH:   2.5 hours | 📍 LOCATION: Eiffel Tower | ✅  BOOK IT: For a special occasion as the best dinner cruise in paris

A Seine River dinner cruise is a romantic way to experience Paris . While indulging in a delicious à-la-carte 3-course meal, you can take in the breathtaking views of Paris, illuminated for the night, aboard an all-glass boat.

This is a perfect way to celebrate a special occasion or to create a memorable experience while visiting Paris .

My husband and I celebrate our wedding anniversary every 5 years in Paris. And on one of those trips we booked this tour, and fondly cherish that memory. There’s nothing quite like a cruise on the Seine at night.

Traveller’s Pro Tip : upgrade your package to include priority seating like we did and you are guaranteed a seat by the window and a glass of champagne to make this one of the best dinner cruises in Paris (a vegetarian option is available).

3. Tour 3: Eiffel Tower Summit Access and Seine River Cruise

⭐️  RATING:  4.5/5 Stars | ⏳  TOUR LENGTH:   3 hours | 📍 LOCATION: Eiffel Tower | ✅  BOOK IT: First-timers to Paris

The Eiffel Tower & Seine River Cruise bundle is the ultimate way to experience the iconic landmarks of Paris.

The combination ticket includes access to the Eiffel Tower summit, where you can enjoy stunning panoramic views of the city from one of its most famous landmarks.

Additionally, the bundle includes a 1-hour cruise in the Seine River Paris, providing a unique perspective of the city and its iconic landmarks, such as the Ile Saint Louis and Louvre Museum.

The bundle is an excellent value for those visiting on a quick Paris getaway and wanting to experience two of the most popular activities in Paris in one convenient package. It also includes a guide.

REVIEWERS say: collecting tickets was easy , go as a group with a guide (pros/cons) , great way to see 2:1 attractions

4. Tour 4: River Seine Cruise with Lunch

⭐️  RATING:  4.7/5 Stars | ⏳  TOUR LENGTH:   2 hours | 📍 LOCATION: Eiffel Tower | ✅  BOOK IT: Leisure lunch

A River Seine Lunch Cruise is a perfect way to indulge in a delicious meal while taking in the stunning views of Paris from the water. Enjoy an à-la-carte 3-course lunch, prepared by skilled chefs, aboard an all-glass boat.

Appreciate the beauty and charm of Paris while enjoying a luxurious dining experience. Whether it’s a romantic outing or a family gathering, a River Seine Lunch Cruise is a memorable and delightful way to experience the best of Paris.

REVIEWERS say: enjoy the upgrade of priority seating, cheese platter and champagne, food was delicious, attentive servers

5. Tour 5: Marne River Loop Cruise with Lunch

⭐️  RATING:  4.7/5 Stars | ⏳  TOUR LENGTH:   6 hours | 📍 LOCATION: Musee d’Orsay | ✅  BOOK IT: Art and History lovers

The Marne River Loop Day Cruise is a fantastic way to experience the scenic beauty of the French countryside. The 6-hour Paris boat trip takes you along the Seine and Marne rivers, offering stunning views of the countryside that inspired the Impressionist art movement.

Indulge in a delicious lunch while taking in the breathtaking views, including gardens and quaint villages. This France off-the-beaten path experience is a perfect way to escape the hustle and bustle of Paris and enjoy a relaxing day in the countryside.

REVIEWERS say: small sized group, ability to order champagne, guide was insightful, pleasurable way to spend the day

bridge on river seine with museum on best river cruises in paris

6. Tour 6: Louvre Museum and Seine River Cruise

⭐️  RATING:  4.4/5 Stars | ⏳  TOUR LENGTH:   1 day duration | 📍 LOCATION: Eiffel Tower | ✅  BOOK IT: Art and Architecture lovers

The Louvre Museum & Seine River Cruise bundle is the best way to experience two of the most popular activities in Paris. The combination ticket includes access to the world-renowned Louvre Museum, home to some of the most famous works of art in the world, including the Mona Lisa.

The bundle ticket also includes a 1-hour boat ride on Seine River. The value-pack bundle is perfect for art enthusiasts and anyone interested in exploring the history and culture of Paris.

REVIEWERS say: appreciate the skip-the-line access to the Louvre, the flexibility of when to use the boat cruise

7. Tour 7: Hop-on Hop-off Bus Tour & Seine Cruise

⭐️  RATING:  4.3/5 Stars | ⏳ TOUR LENGTH: Valid for 1, 2 or 3-day options (at booking) | ✅  BOOK IT: Relaxed sightseer

The Hop-on Hop-off Bus Tour & Seine River Cruise bundle is an excellent way to explore the city without strolling the Paris streets .

The combination ticket offers 1, 2, or 3-day options, allowing you to experience the city at your own pace. The bus tour provides an informative audio commentary and stops at all of the major landmarks, including the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame Cathedral, and the Louvre Museum.

Additionally, the bundle includes a cruise on the River Seine Paris giving you a new perspective of the city and its famous landmarks.

REVIEWERS say: the buses were on schedule, information was shared on the bus tour and the boat tour was different so no duplication

8. Tour 8: Illumiantions Seine River Cruise

⭐️  RATING:  4.3/5 Stars | ⏳  TOUR LENGTH:   1 hour | 📍 LOCATION: Eiffel Tower | ✅  BOOK IT: Sunset Lovers

The Illuminations Seine River Cruise is a magical way to experience Paris’s landmarks at their most beautiful. Cruise Paris Seine River for an hour where you can enjoy stunning views of Paris, illuminated by the evening sunset. The landmarks include the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame Cathedral, and the Louvre Museum, among others.

The experience offers a unique perspective of the city, allowing visitors to appreciate the beauty and romance of Paris as the light slowly dips into the horizon.

It’s an excellent way to cap off a day of exploring the city and a must-do for anyone looking to experience the enchanting ambiance of Paris at its finest.

REVIEWERS say: time it perfectly to catch the sunset, best night boat tour Paris offers to see the Eiffel Tower twinkle lights, top deck does not have audio

9. Tour 9: Seine Cruise & Crepe Tasting

⭐️  RATING:  4.2/5 Stars | ⏳  TOUR LENGTH:   1 hour | 📍 LOCATION: Eiffel Tower | ✅  BOOK IT: Foodies

The Seine Cruise & Crêpe Tasting is a delightful way to experience Parisian cuisine while taking in the beauty of the city from the water. The 1-hour Paris Seine River cruise takes you along the famous river, offering stunning views of Paris’s iconic landmarks such as the Grand Palais and Hotel de Ville.

Before or after the cruise, you can indulge in a delicious crêpe at the foot of the Eiffel Tower, a quintessential French treat.

REVIEWERS say: delicious crepes, the cruise boat offers outdoor seating and indoor seating with glass windows, busier times are in the evening to catch the sunset , best night Seine River cruise

10. Tour 10: Evening Cruise with Drink and City Walking Tour

⭐️  RATING:  4.2/5 Stars | ⏳  TOUR LENGTH:   2 hours | 📍 LOCATION: Eiffel Tower | ✅  BOOK IT: Explorers

The Evening Cruise with Drink and City Walking Tour is an exciting way to experience Paris. This 1-hour Seine River cruise at night takes you past some of the city’s most treasured landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower and Les Invalides. During the cruise, visitors can enjoy a glass of champagne, adding a touch of luxury to the experience.

After the River Seive boat tour, you can choose from a selection of 10 audio walking tours around Paris, allowing you to explore the city’s charming streets and neighbourhoods, like Saint Germain . This fun experience offers a unique perspective of Paris, combining stunning views of the city with a cultural walking tour.

REVIEWERS say: glass of wine was a nice touch, loud music on board (pro/con), option of using the walking tour after the cruise is over

11. Tour 11: Seine River and Canal Saint-Martin Cruise

⭐️  RATING:  4.2/5 Stars | ⏳  TOUR LENGTH:   2.5 hours | 📍 LOCATION: Eiffel Tower | ✅  BOOK IT: Hidden gem seekers

The Seine River and Canal Saint-Martin Cruise is a fascinating way to experience the hidden side of Paris’s waterways. The 2.5-hour cruise takes you along the Seine River and Canal Saint-Martin, offering a unique perspective of the city’s secret side. This is the best Paris boat tour for exploring the charming and lesser-known areas of Paris.

The cruise offers stunning views of the city’s historic buildings, arched bridges, and picturesque locks. It’s a perfect way to escape the crowds and experience Paris’s peaceful and hidden waterways.

REVIEWERS say: watching the opening of the canals, guide commentary is difficult to hear and only inside seats, great value for experience

12. Tour 12: Sunset and Evening River Cruise with Music and Drinks

⭐️  RATING:  4/5 Stars | ⏳  TOUR LENGTH:   1 hours | 📍 LOCATION: Eiffel Tower | ✅  BOOK IT: Nightlife seekers

The Sunset and Seine River Night Cruise with Music & Drinks is a fantastic way to experience the magic of Paris at night. The 1-hour cruise on the Seine Paris takes you past 8 of the city’s top landmarks. Enjoy a glass of champagne, wine, or beer while listening to music on board, adding to the ambiance of the experience.

The Sunset and Evening River Cruise is a perfect way to unwind after a long day of sightseeing and enjoy the beauty of Paris at night.

REVIEWERS say: best part is rooftop, magical, couldn’t hear guide, bring own headphones and Smartphone , one of the best Paris river cruises to see the lights

Tips & Highlights for Your Seine River Cruise

bridge, boats in cruise on best seine river cruises in Paris

To make the most of your Paris river cruise it’s important to plan and keep these tips in mind:

  • Book your tour in advance to ensure availability and to get the best possible price.
  • Double-check the departure point and time to avoid any confusion or delays.
  • Read the instructions and details of the tour you are taking to manage expectations.
  • Arrive early, as it allows you to choose your preferred seating and ensure a smooth boarding process.
  • Dress appropriately for the type of tour you’ll be taking – whether it’s a casual daytime cruise or a more formal dinner cruise.
  • Cruises are wheelchair accessible. There may be limitations once onboard the boats in Paris. But all boats have ramps suitable for wheelchair users to get on and off safely.

Each of the River Seine Tours starts and ends at the Eiffel Tower and will cruise past 8 iconic landmarks:

  • Les Invalides
  • Musée d’Orsay
  • Ile de la Cite
  • Notre Dame Cathedral
  • Hôtel de Ville
  • Louvre Museum
  • Place de la Concorde
  • Grand Palais

The cruise on River Seine Paris will take you under 16 of the most iconic bridges like Pont Alexandre III and Pont des Arts.

As a Holidaymaker

So there you have it, some of the best Seine River cruises in Paris that will leave you with unforgettable memories. From romantic dinner cruises to family-friendly options and everything in between.

So whether you’re here for a special occasion or just want to take in the sights and sounds of one of the most beautiful cities in the world, be sure to hop on board one of these amazing river cruises. Bon voyage!

boat tour on seine river

Creator, Founder of Dream Plan Experience

She specializes exclusively in European travel and crafting unforgettable day trips within her home province of Ontario, Canada.

She has been travelling to Europe for over 35 years and has lived abroad in Germany twice. Revisiting countries and exploring them extensively to create in depth travel itineraries, destination guides and helping travellers plan their trips to Europe through her customized services.

She also is a co-partner in a woman-led company that offers luxury retreats in Europe offering immersive cultural experiences.

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best boat cruise in paris

Paris Boat Tours & Cruises: How to Book the Best?

Last Updated on February 5, 2024

Sunset boat tour of Paris. Cruises on the Seine river are popular at all times of year

Most “top attractions” lists for Paris, including our own , suggest booking a boat tour of the Seine river or other waterways in the capital. But since these sightseeing cruises are so commonplace, you may wonder whether they’re really worth your time and money. And how to choose among the many options to make sure you book a high-quality cruise?

For some of you, such tours may feel too touristy and predictable to merit a couple of hours. It’s true that they’re generally not exactly “off the beaten path”, as attractions go.

However, you should know that Seine sightseeing tours and cruises aren’t your only option. A cruise along Paris’ canals and nearby rivers , including the Marne River and the Canal Saint-Martin , can offer fresh perspectives and picturesque joys, even for seasoned visitors.

And if it is your first time exploring the city , a boat tour of the Seine or other waterway is something I definitely recommend.

Keep reading for my take on why these cruises provide an excellent overview of the capital and some of its iconic sights, and for full advice on choosing the right boat tours and packages.

Explore This Article

What Are The Pros of Taking a Paris Boat Tour or River Cruise?

Bateaux Parisiens dinner cruise on the Seine, with Notre Dame Cathedral in the background.

There are a few noteworthy benefits of touring the city by boat, especially if you’re planning a debut trip to Paris. By taking a sightseeing cruise in particular, you can get an excellent overview of the city– its layout, geography and millennia-long history.

Related: The Top 10 Things to Do in Paris When You’re a First-Time Visitor

The commented cruises generally include interesting details on Parisian history, architecture and culture.

This can be a good way to get oriented from your first day, and help you figure out what you’d like to focus on in more details on the remaining days of your trip.

For this reason, I tend to recommend that you take a boat tour toward the beginning of your stay.

What’s more, these basic cruises are affordable and accessible to all, no matter your budget or mobility levels.

Bateaux-Mouches boat tour of the Seine: a commented sightseeing cruise that's affordable and accessible.

Fresh air, photo opportunities and the ability to just sit back and rest your feet for a stretch are other bonuses, in my book.

During the evenings, especially during the summer and early autumn, sitting out on the deck and taking in the soft lights reflecting on the water can be simply idyllic, too.

Lunch or dinner cruises, while certainly not very original, can nevertheless be romantic. And visitors often overlook the joys of a lazy lunch cruise, especially on a sunny day.

In the summer, drifting down the Seine or the Marne (see below) onboard a boat, enjoying cool breezes from off the water, and sipping a crisp glass of Sauvignon or rosé can be something approaching bliss.

{Paris’ Seine River: Key Facts and Historical Moments}

Finally, cruising the Seine is one key way to “get in touch” with the ancient history of Paris. It was around the Seine, on the Ile de la Cité, that a small Celtic tribe called the Parisii founded a first settlement in the area, around the 3rd century BC.

{Related: Can You Swim in the Seine River?}

From there, the Roman Gauls and then-medieval French monarchs built their respective cities around the banks of the Seine, erecting fortified walls to tightly demarcate their boundaries. Over the centuries, these boundaries would continue to expand outward.

best boat cruise in paris

When you float down the Seine on a guided cruise, in short, you can easily imagine the original bounds of the Celtic, Roman and early medieval predecessors of modern Paris.

What Will You See on a Typical Seine River Cruise?

The Grand Palais hosts many of the early fall season's most exciting exhibitions. Creative Commons/rights-free

Ah, the Seine . It’s probably safe to say that no other river in the world has been the subject of so much poetic fussing, frantic picture-taking and all-around adulation.

Touring the river– which is the literal center of Parisian civilization–  is a great way to familarize yourself with stunning monuments, historical buildings and ornate bridges. Photo opportunities also abound, of course.

{Related: Some of the Most Beautiful & Historic Bridges of Paris)

Most sightseeing cruises, including those from Bateaux-Mouches, Bateaux Parisiens and Vedettes du Pont Neuf, include commented views of the following sites and monuments:

By Didier Moïse, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=50131339

  • Notre Dame Cathedral
  • Eiffel Tower
  • Musée du Louvre
  • Musée d’Orsay
  • Assemblée Nationale (The National Assembly building)
  • Hotel des Invalides
  • Conciergerie
  • Pont Neuf ( despite it’s name claiming that it’s “new”, this is Paris’ oldest bridge, dating to the 16th century)
  • Pont Alexandre III (Art Nouveau bridge dating to 1896)
  • Grand Palais (Belle Epoque building housing National Galleries)

Many other attractions and monuments are in your range of sight, too– not to mention more impressionistic scenes. Enjoy dapples of dusky light hitting the water, or the fiery glow of leaves from autumn trees clustered around the Ile St. Louis. 

best boat cruise in paris

Admire some of the finer details of Parisian architecture: ornate statues decorating old bridges, and warm afternoon light illuminating the medieval turrets of the Conciergerie, once a royal palace.

Catch a glimpse of the traditional Seine-side booksellers ( bouquinistes ) , whose wagon-green metal stands brimming with books, posters, engravings and more have been around in various forms for centuries.

Sometimes, the boats themselves are even noteworthy attractions– such as the Louisane Belle steamboat-style cruiser pictured above, and operated by Bateaux de Paris for private events and special occasions such as New Year’s Eve.

Commentary Languages

Commentary is generally available in English, French, Spanish, Italian, German, Chinese and other languages. Check with the tour you end up choosing to ensure they offer commentary in your language of choice.

Book a sightseeing tour of the Seine in advance

Bateaux Parisiens are considered among the best boat tour operators in Paris.

It’s not strictly necessary to reserve in advance for most sightseeing cruises, but especially during peak tourist season it’s something I recommend.

  • You can compare popular sightseeing cruises on the Seine and book online here (via GetYourGuide).
  • To read reviews from fellow travelers and select the cruise that’s best-suited to your budget and interests, visit this page (at TripAdvisor).
  • If you’re in the mood for something a bit indulgent and romantic, why not try a dinner cruise ? Book an evening dinner cruise on the Seine here (via GetYourGuide) . The 2.5 hour sunset trip includes a three-course meal and glass of champagne, wine or an aperitif. This is a good option for an anniversary, Valentine’s day celebration or birthday gift.

Dinner cruise in Paris with the Eiffel Tower in the distance.

If you’re interested in a lunch or dinner cruise (and don’t mind going all-in on an activity that’s a bit of a romantic cliché), you have plenty of options.

Lunch & Dinner Cruises on the Seine

While the fare aboard these cruises is rarely exceptional, this can be a relaxing and picturesque way to take in the city while enjoying some decent, typically French food and wine.

Companies including Bateaux Parisiens offer onboard dinner packages that typically range from 3-course meals with wine and water to more elaborate “tasting menus” and “VIP” packages include champagne.

Most have at least one option for vegetarians these days, but vegans will generally have a harder time finding something suitable among the fixed menu options.

You’ll generally pay more for the best views at the front of the boat or by a window. Some cruise packages also include live music or other performances onboard.

Lunch packages are, on the whole, a bit more casual, but can also be elaborate. For example, the Bateaux-Mouches lunchtime cruise (complete with slightly corny-but-charming accordion music) includes a welcome aperitif, three courses including starter, main and cheese or dessert, wine and bottled water.

Book a Lunch or Dinner Cruise

Unlike sightseeing cruises, which run throughout the day and don’t require a reservation, you’ll almost certainly need to book a lunch or dinner package ahead of time.

See this page (via GetYourGuide) to compare and book dinner cruise offers . For popular lunch cruise packages, see this page (via Come to Paris)

Which Seine Cruise Companies and Boat Tours Are the Best?

Boat tours of the Seine: a wonderful way to get oriented and in touch with Parisian history. Guilhem Vellut/Creative Commons

Since there are so many companies out there competing for your attention, you may wonder which to go with. I can’t give you any absolutes, but here are a few notes to help you find the right offer:

  • I have personally vetted the basic sightseeing cruises for Bateaux Mouches and Bateaux Parisiens , as well as a sunset dinner cruise from Bateaux Parisiens. I found the quality-price ratio to be high for all of these tours and packages, and confidently recommend them.
  • In addition, as I note below, I have tested and recommend the canal and Marne River cruises from Canauxrama .
  • Companies including Les Vedettes du Pont Neuf and Vedettes de Paris are also well-respected, both offering sightseeing and lunch/dinner cruises.
  • To make an informed choice about a particular company and choose a Paris boat tour or cruise that fits your budget, read reviews from fellow travelers at TripAdvisor .

Independent Type? Hop-On, Hop-Off With Batobus

Batobus is a hop-on, hop-off boat company in Paris with nine stops.

Some of you will feel restless on a commented cruise and would prefer a “hop-on, hop-off” sort of service. Batobus is a quirky way to get around central Paris and some of its more popular tourist attractions.

A good alternative to the metro in some cases, it allows you to explore at your leisure, taking all the time you need.

The nine stops include the Eiffel Tower, Musée d’Orsay, Louvre and Eiffel Tower. Batobus “shuttle boats” depart every 20-40 minutes, depending on the time of year.

You can purchase a one-day or two-day pass. Boats are equipped with glass rooftops and are heated during the winter months.

Get tickets: You can book 24-hour or 48-hour tickets for Batobus here (via Tiqets.com)

Canal Tours & Day Trips With Canauxrama

Canauxrama cruise on the Canal St Martin in Paris

Especially if you’ve already taken a Seine sightseeing tour or cruise and wonder what else there is to do sur l’eau (on the water), consider exploring the city’s canals and nearby rivers.

Canauxrama offers cruises on the Canal St. Martin, giving you interesting perspectives of one of the city’s historic industrial waterways.

The center of a vibrant local nightlife scene , the canalside area is scenic and less touristy than the Seine riverbanks. This cruise is especially interesting for the way it allows you to glimpse and learn about the canal’s elaborate lock system.

{Book a Romantic Cruise on the Canal Saint-Martin With Viator}

The waters are emptied, then refilled at incredible speeds to allow for the passage of boats and cargo vessels.

best boat cruise in paris

Itching to get out of the city for a day trip? You can also take a longer, half-day cruise on the Marne river , drifting alongside banks immortalized by Impressionist painters including Camille Pissarro and Claude Monet.

I boarded a weekend cruise on the Marne with some friends a few years ago, and was astonished at how green and bucolic the surrounding landscapes were.

It was a true “escape to the countryside” that was well worth it. Pack a typical Parisian-style picnic to enjoy a break on the banks of the river during the warmer months.

When is the Best Time to Take a Boat Tour of Paris?

When is the best time of year to take a sightseeing cruise of the Seine or other boat tour?

The best time for sightseeing cruises is generally May through mid-September, when skies tend to be clearer and temperatures are generally warm.

Fall and winter tours are still worthwhile, but keep in mind that wind chill and frequent rain can make sitting on the open-air deck less than desirable.

I once embarked on a wintery evening Seine cruise with my grandparents. While I cherish the memory of sitting on the open deck of the Bateaux-Mouches with my grandmother, both of us wrapped in thick gloves and scarves to fend off the icy wind, this won’t be to everyone’s taste.

When is the Best Time of Year to Visit Paris? All Seasons Have Their Charms.

As for lunch and dinner cruises , fall and winter can still be a lovely time of year to embark on one.

But I do recommend that you check forecasts and try to pick a clearer day. Foggy or wet conditions could make your cruise less scenic and enjoyable, after all.

Is a Package Deal Always More Worthwhile?

best boat cruise in paris

In a word, no. Only book one of these if you really want to see the Eiffel Tower, the Moulin Rouge or whatever else is being offered alongside the cruise.

Sometimes tourists mistakenly believe that it’s always better to go for a packaged deal, even if your enthusiasm for certain activities is low.

Several companies offer discounted packages allowing you to book a combined cruise/dinner/cabaret show if you so choose, or to follow up your Seine tour with a visit to monuments such as the Eiffel Tower. 

If everything on offer in such deals sounds fantastic, go for it. Otherwise, I recommend opting for simplicity. Sometimes, an hour of sightseeing is all you want and need.

Book a Cruise Package

best boat cruise in paris

If you do think a packaged deal may be for you, there are plenty of offers to choose from. See this page at ParisCityVision for packages that combine cruises, cabarets and/or visits to attractions such as the Eiffel Tower.

See this page (via GetYourGuide) to compare and book dinner cruise offers   . For popular lunch cruise packages in Paris,  see this page (via Come to Paris) .

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the ultimate guide to seine river cruises and other boat tours in Paris. France

Editor’s Note: This post includes some affiliate links. Booking cruises or packages through these comes at no additional cost to you, but will help to fund more in-depth features and news at this site. Thank you.

Courtney Traub

Courtney Traub is the Founder and Editor of Paris Unlocked. She’s a longtime Paris resident who now divides her time (as well as she can manage) between the French capital and Norwich, UK. Co-author of the 2012 Michelin Green Guide to Northern France & the Paris Region, she has been interviewed as an expert on Paris and France by the BBC, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Le Figaro, Matador Network and other publications. Courtney has also written and reported stories for media outlets including Radio France Internationale, The Christian Science Monitor, Women’s Wear Daily and The Associated Press. In addition to going down various rabbit holes of curiosity when it comes to French culture, history, food and art, Courtney is a scholar of literature and cultural history whose essays and reviews have appeared in various forums.

One thought on “ Paris Boat Tours & Cruises: How to Book the Best? ”

I am a fan of the Canauxrama guided tours given also in what they call English in particular their adorable weekend Seine tours,never crowded smaller boat no dinner but a pleasant bar selling beverages wine coffee sodas etc and fine sandwiches (plus of course rest room:) Just above the quay Arsenal from where boat tour departs there is a real nice summer restaurant Le Grand Bleu for dinner before departing on evening tour at 8.30 pm

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Paris Dinner Cruise Guide: 10 Top Companies Compared (2024)

Enjoying dinner while cruising along the River Seine is an iconic Parisian experience. But with so many boat companies offering tours, how do you choose?

As a long-time Paris local, I’ve personally researched, reviewed, and rated all the best Seine dinner cruise options. Whether you’re looking for romance, luxury, entertainment or just delicious French food with amazing city views, you’ll discover the perfect riverboat here.

This guide also features my insider tips to help you book dates and seats that suit your trip.

Warning: these choices only reflect my personal opinion!

⭐️ Top Paris Dinner Cruise Picks

  • For those looking for a reliable, classic River Seine cruise experience , I recommend Bateaux Mouches or Les Bateaux Parisiens . These long-running dinner cruises consistently receive excellent reviews.
  • If romance is your top priority , treat your loved one to an intimate evening on Bateaux Mouches’ Privilège Étoile service or the newer luxury yacht Don Juan II .
  • For a high-end Michelin star meal , only Alain Ducasse’s Ducasse Sur Seine single-handedly matches fine dining with smooth electric riverboat transport.
  • On a budget but still interested in Seine views? Check out Paris en Scène or historic boat Le Calife for cheaper dinner cruises that impress.

Now let’s go into detail about each dinner cruise on the Seine.

Bateaux-Mouches, the Iconic Paris Dinner Cruise With Live Music

bateaux mouches bateau diner croisière

Bateaux-Mouches is a registered trademark that has been around for over 60 years.

Originally, the name referred to boats that transported goods, and it was during the 1867 Universal Exhibition that some boats began to accept passengers on board.

You will discover the main monuments of the capital: the Eiffel Tower, Notre-Dame-de-Paris, the City Hall, the Musée d’Orsay… so many romantic places for your dinner on the Seine.

⌚ Schedule: 8:30pm (duration: 2h15)

  • €115 for the “Prestige” menu (aperitif, starter, main course, dessert, drink)
  • €155 for the “Excellence” menu (window seat, aperitif, champagne, starter, main course, cheese, dessert, drink)

You can also enjoy special events:

  • New Year’s Eve : €460/person (from 20:30 until 02:00, band and singer)
  • Christmas : €110

😍 What We Love:

  • the large windows
  • the live music that creates a great atmosphere
  • the quality of the food
  • the vegetarian options
  • the wine included even in the cheapest package

🫤 What We Like Less:

  • Saturdays are often fully booked weeks in advance
  • the portions could be larger
  • disappointing Cheese selection, like brie, were not up to expectations.

Note : Book in advance. Especially if you want to come on a Saturday, you should do so several weeks or even months in advance.

➡️ Book your dinner cruise with Bateaux Mouches   🔥 H IGH DEMAND

Bateaux Parisiens, a Sophisticated Glass-Enclosed Cruise

bateaux parisiens sur la seine

You can board the Bateaux Parisiens next to the Eiffel Tower or Notre-Dame. Their main point is their enormous glass panes offering a panoramic view of Paris.

Whether you’re on the Onyx , the Diamant II , or any other of their boats, the Bateaux Parisiens will serve you the most famous monuments in Paris such as the Eiffel Tower, the Invalides, the Louvre and many more on a silver platter.

⌚ Schedule :

  • 6:15pm (duration: 1h15)
  • 8:30pm (duration: 2h30)
  • Dinner Cruise 6:15pm (1h15): €95 for Dinner Etoile, €125 for Dinner Privilege, €149 for Dinner Premier.
  • Dinner Cruise 8:30pm (2h30): €115 for Dinner Etoile, €139 for Dinner Découverte, €185 for Dinner Privilege, €215 for Dinner Premier.
  • July 14th (National Day): €159 for the Excellence service (panoramic view)
  • New Year’s Eve : €430/person

😍 What We Love :

  • the fully glazed boats
  • French cuisine
  • the casual chic atmosphere
  • the musical entertainment
  • good timing with the Eiffel Tower’s light show
  • a children’s menu at €39.

🫤 What We Like Less :

  • the boat can sometimes appear quite crowded
  • few availabilities
  • the (too) short (1h15) and (too) early (at 6:15 pm) route

Note : Les Bateaux Parisiens can be difficult to book, so don’t wait until the last minute, especially if it’s for a Saturday (which can sometimes be fully booked 1 or 2 months in advance).

➡️ Book your dinner cruise with Bateaux Parisiens   🔥 H IGH DEMAND

Paris Seine, an Intimate River Cruise With French Cuisine

Marina de Paris

The boats offered by Paris Seine will delight you with their elegant and intimate decoration.

You will be able to enjoy high-quality food while admiring the main monuments of Paris, as the route starts at the foot of the Musée d’Orsay.

  • Dinner Cruise 6:45pm (1h15): €85
  • Dinner Cruise 9:15pm (2h): €100 without drinks, €130 for VIP including drinks, €165 for Romantic package.
  • July 14th (National Day): €149 special menu
  • A very popular cruise available most of the time
  • The 9:15 PM journey allowing views of the illuminated Eiffel Tower
  • Children’s menu at €40
  • 100% vegetarian menu with several options
  • Enjoyable live music performances.
  • The price of additional options (drinks and seats near the windows)
  • Some seats are sometimes too tight and crowded.

➡️   Book your dinner cruise with Paris Seine

Le Diamant Bleu, Paris By Night With Singers and DJs

diamant bleu bateau de nuit

Discover the magic of “Paris by night” aboard the Blue Diamond and savor a gourmet dinner while admiring the breathtaking views of the city’s iconic monuments.

Enjoy a 2.5-hour cruise along the Seine with a choice of starter, main course, and dessert, all prepared by the talented Chef Mohamed Gamara and his team.

Enjoy live entertainment with singers and a DJ.

⌚ Schedule : 8:30 pm (2.5 hour)

  • €89 Gourmet Dinner Cruise
  • €109 Gourmet Dinner Cruise with Wine (1/2 bottle of wine per person)
  • €129 Sparkling Gourmet Dinner Cruise (1/2 bottle of champagne/wine per person)
  • €144 VIP Sparkling Gourmet Dinner Cruise (guaranteed window table)
  • The superb upper deck terrace
  • The excellent quality of food
  • The Lounge and live music ambiance. The performance of the musicians and singer is incredible (songs in French and English)
  • Friendly and very helpful staff
  • The opportunity to dance back at the dock (Live DJ)
  • Music a bit too loud for having a conversation
  • No vegetarian options
  • Limited non-alcoholic drink options
  • Some tables are a bit too close to each other

➡️ Book your dinner cruise with Le Diamant Bleu  

Calife, a Charming Barge Cruise That Feels Like Old Paris

the Calife on the Seine

The Calife , whose personnel clearly seems to treat you as a pasha combines two opposite aspects: a both sumptuous and friendly atmosphere.

Whether it is the music, the decor and, obviously, the Parisian monuments to admire, you will definitely not be in want.

⌚ Schedule : 8:45 pm (duration: 2h).

  • Calife menu priced at €67/adult without drinks (welcome cocktail, starter, main course, dessert)
  • Royal menu priced at €109/adult (welcome cocktail, starter, main course, dessert, wine, champagne)
  • Children’s menu called Les Petits Matelos priced at €45 (starter, main course, dessert)
  • good value for money
  • the barge is pretty, typical and quite small
  • outdoor pontoon to admire Paris
  • retractable roof to see Paris under the stars in the open air
  • there are vegetarian options
  • some tables are close to each other

➡️ Book your dinner cruise with Le Calife

Ducasse sur Seine, Alain Ducasse’s Gourmet Electric River Boat

  View this post on Instagram   Une publication partagée par Ducasse sur Seine (@ducassesurseine)

Now you can enjoy the excellence of chef Alain Ducasse on the Seine. Since 2018 it is possible to take a (gastronomic) dinner cruise on board the Ducasse sur Seine.

Beyond a simple cruise, Alain Ducasse offers you a real experience on board an electric boat. A silent trip around the historical and remarkable sites of Paris.

⌚ Schedule : 8:30 pm (duration: 2h).

  • €160 for the 4-course menu (excluding drinks).
  • €200 for the 5-course menu (excluding drinks).
  • €305 for the 5-course menu & wine pairing.
  • the only eco-friendly dinner cruise (100% electric)
  • the silence of the boat
  • the high-level gastronomic cuisine
  • over 100 wine references
  • the valet parking service (€15)
  • drinks not included in the menu (glass of wine is expensive).

➡️ Book your dinner cruise with Ducasse sur Seine

Vedettes du Pont Neuf, Casual Terrace Dining With City Views

vedettes du pont neuf on the seine

Initially founded in 1959 with no less than four boats, the Vedettes du Pont Neuf have been welcoming travelers who want to visit Paris in a tasteful atmosphere.

As such, under the lights of the Eiffel Tower and other famous monuments, you will be able to enjoy a meal worthy of French gastronomy.

💰 Price: €79 for the menu (excluding drinks): Earth Menu, Sea Menu, Vegetarian Menu

  • the terrace
  • the beautiful 2h00 trip
  • the French cuisine
  • there is a vegetarian menu
  • Background music: French classics
  • drinks not included in the menu

➡️ Book your dinner cruise with the Vedettes du Pont Neuf 

Paris en Scène, an Affordable Cruise With Parisian Bistro Fare

paris en scene bateau

An affordable dinner cruise on the Seine is possible! And it’s offered every day of the week.

You will enjoy a meal inspired by French bistro traditions, comfortably seated in large leather armchairs.

After dinner, treat yourself to a breathtaking panoramic view of Paris’ landmarks from one of the boat’s three captivating terraces.

⌚ Schedule : 7:30 pm, 10:00 pm (duration: 1h45).

  • €62 for the Water formula
  • €72 for the Wine formula (½ bottle of wine for two)
  • €82 for the Champagne formula (½ bottle of champagne for two)
  • the value for money
  • the comfortable leather armchairs
  • the romantic atmosphere
  • the friendly service
  • the vegan/vegetarian options
  • the lack of live performance
  • the wait between courses can be long
  • the insufficient portions

➡️ Book your dinner cruise with the Paris en Scène 

Capitaine Fracasse, a Cozy Dinner Cruise on A Freshly Renovated Boat

capitaine fracasse boat at night

The Capitaine Fracasse offers a cruise on the Seine aboard a freshly renovated boat, allowing you to discover the most beautiful Parisian monuments along the river.

Inside, passengers are seated in a contemporary and elegant setting, with an optimal view of the Seine from their table thanks to the large bay windows.

The menu offers gourmet dishes cooked on board with options for all tastes and budgets.

Well thought-out packages are available to suit all budgets and options are offered to enhance the cruise.

⌚ Schedule:

  • Sunday to Friday: 8:45 PM (duration: 2 hours 15 minutes)
  • Saturday: 6:15 PM (duration: 1 hour 45 minutes), 9:00 PM (duration: 2 hours 15 minutes)
  • €75 for the Fracasse formula (without drinks)
  • €85 for the Amiral formula (welcome cocktail and ½ bottle of wine included)
  • €95 for the Vinophile formula (75 cl of a superior wine for two)
  • the human-sized boat
  • the welcoming and quality service
  • the quality of the dishes
  • the soft background music
  • access to the rooftop and animation by the photographer
  • vegan and gluten-free options
  • the wait between the starter and the main course can be long
  • the staff’s insistence on taking photos can be a bit too much.

➡️ Book your dinner cruise with the Capitaine Fracasse 

Don Juan II, Michelin-Star Dining On a Luxurious Parisian Yacht

best boat cruise in paris

Since 1991, Yachts de Paris allow you to discover the monuments of Paris in luxury.

They’re aiming for excellence.

The 7 yachts, all more splendid than the next, will welcome you in an elegant atmosphere but it is on the Don Juan II that you can have your dinner.

The cuisine, created by the Michelin-starred chef Frédéric Anton, is worthy of a three-star restaurant. You’ll definitely never want to leave the Don Juan II.

💰 Price : fixed menu at €240 (drinks not included)

  • the extremely high-class ambiance
  • the human-scale barge
  • the atypical setting
  • the menu worthy of a gourmet restaurant
  • the originality of the dishes
  • the discreet musical atmosphere
  • the portions are sometimes too small
  • drinks are not included in the menu

➡️ Book your dinner cruise on the Don Juan II 

Comparison Table of the Paris Dinner Cruises

Paris dinner cruise booking tips.

Planning ahead is key when booking a memorable Paris River cruise. Follow these tips for an amazing hassle-free tour:

  • Reserve Early: Popular cruises like Bateaux Mouches or intimate boats fill up weeks in advance, especially for peak summer months and weekends. Book your tickets at least 2-3 weeks out if possible. Last-minute trips could have limited days or times.
  • Consider Group Size: Smaller barges like Le Calife or Don Juan II provide a more exclusive vibe. If traveling with more guests or kids, larger boats like Bateaux Parisiens accommodate bigger groups.
  • Check Schedules: Evening illumination cruises to see monuments like the sparkling Eiffel Tower are stunning but shorter in length. Late evening departures allow you to dine at leisure while taking in the sights.
  • Confirm Dress Code: While most Seine cruises have no formal dress code, shorts and flip-flops are best avoided. Business casual or smart casual attire creates the right vibe for these classy Parisian dinner events.
  • Bring a Cover: Even in summer months, cool breezes can pick up at night on the open river. Having a light sweater, wrap or jacket ensures you stay comfortable admiring the views.
  • Arrive Early: Aim to arrive 15-30 minutes before your cruise departure time to check-in, get settled at your table, and enjoy a pre-dinner drink on board

Mona

I aim to share my tips and recommendations for the beautiful country of France. My goal is to help you plan your next adventure, whether it’s a weekend getaway or a once-in-a-lifetime trip. From finding the best hotels and restaurants, to discovering unique activities and sights, I’ve got you covered!

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  1. Cruising the Seine River in Paris: How to Choose the Best Seine Cruise

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  2. Bateaux Parisiens: The Best Seine River Cruise in Paris

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  3. The Best Luxury Boat Cruises in Paris

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  4. Paris Restaurant Boat: dinner cruise on the Seine

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  5. Paris with Seine River Cruise

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  6. Bateaux Parisiens: Seine River Cruise

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  6. Our 12th Anniversary on the boat cruise

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  1. THE 10 BEST Paris Boat Rides & Cruises

    THE 10 BEST Paris Boat Rides & Cruises. 1. Paris Seine River Dinner Cruise with Live Music by Bateaux Mouches. See the iconic sights of Paris from the water, illuminated for the evening, on this Bateaux Mouches sightseeing dinner cruise…. 2.

  2. Seine River Cruises in Paris: How to Choose the Best Seine Cruise Boat Tour

    4. Canauxrama Seine Cruise. Canauxrama is one of the top companies for providing canal tours around Paris, but they also provide scenic tours along the Seine River as well as a combined canal and river cruise. The Canuaxrama boats vary a bit but all have a closed bottom deck and an open-top deck.

  3. 5 Best Seine River Cruises in Paris: Your Ultimate Guide

    Below, I've distilled the wide array of Seine River Cruises down to an essential shortlist—featuring the top 3 most popular and highly recommended experiences in Paris. #1 BUdget seine Cruise. Best 1h River Seine Cruise. Roundtrip Seine River Cruise. Audio Commentary.

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    Book now. Advertising. 7. Champagne at the Moulin Rouge and Seine River Cruise. Sure, this is on the pricier end of tours on offer, but it will definitely be a night you remember. The evening ...

  5. Paris River Cruise Guide

    Seine River Cruises in Paris - Itinerary & Map. With few exceptions, the itinerary is very similar to all the Seine River cruises in Paris, covering the part of the Seine River that goes through the central Arrondissements of Paris, from the Eiffel Tower in Paris 7 to Ile de Saint Louis in Paris 4.. Boats go downstream following the Seine's Left Bank, and they turn after Ile de Saint Louis ...

  6. THE TOP 10 Paris Boat Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours (w/Prices)

    2,920. See the major sights of Paris from the water on a hop-on hop-off Seine boat cruise. With either a 1- or 2-day ticket, glide leisurely along the river, hopping off and on when you wish to visit the attractions that most interest you, such as the Eiffel Tower, Musée d'Orsay, the Louvre and Notre Dame.

  7. THE 10 BEST Paris Boat Rides & Cruises

    12. Paris Seine River Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Cruise. See top Paris sights on a leisurely hop-on hop-off Seine boat cruise. Forget traveling underground on the metro or tiring…. 13. Paris Seine River Champagne Tasting Cruise. Set sail along the River Seine and admire Paris' historic landmarks from the water.

  8. Best Seine River Cruises & Boat Tours in Paris: reviews, tips

    The Bateaux Mouches boat trip is considered as one the best boat tour in Paris it is the most famous. And, good news, the Fly boats are not too expensive. Prices: €16. €7 for kids aged 12 or less. Departure every 15min or 30 min until 11 pm ( 9 pm in winter) - Duration 1.10 hour.

  9. 13 Stunning Seine River Cruises You Cannot Miss

    4. Seine River hop-on hop-off sightseeing cruise. Take in the City of Lights at a leisurely pace via the Seine River sightseeing cruise. This boat ride, which stops at nine points along the river ...

  10. The BEST Paris Cruises & boat tours 2024

    The best Paris Cruises & boat tours are: Paris: 1-Hour River Seine Cruise with Audio Commentary. Paris: Louvre Reserved Access and Boat Cruise. Paris: Evening River Cruise with Music. Paris: Louvre Museum Entry Ticket and Seine River Cruise. Paris: Seine Cruise & Crepe Tasting near the Eiffel Tower.

  11. Cruise on the Seine in Paris

    starting from 95.00 €. Book. Mother's Day Boat Cruise on the River Seine. starting from 85.00 €. Book. Christmas lunch cruise - December 25 in Paris. starting from 115.00 €. Book. Bateaux Mouches® is the benchmark for cruises on the Seine in Paris: Boat tour, lunch or dinner, there is a cruise for everyone in Paris.

  12. Paris River Cruise: 10+ Top Rated Tours in 2024

    Easily one of the best Seine River night cruise options on this list, this tour has earned Viator's Badge of Excellence award for good reason! Check Rates & Availability for the Paris Seine River Private Boat Tour. 🚢8. Paris at the First Lodges - Ducasse sur Seine Lunch Cruise.

  13. Bateaux Parisiens

    Enjoy a very special, magical moment on a cruise in central Paris. +33 (0)1 76 64 14 45 Practical Info FAQ Restaurant Cruises Sightseeing Cruises Le Bistro Parisien Bateaux Parisiens Private Hire Private events Corporate events Schools ...

  14. Paris Seine river cruise

    Cruise on the Seine with Bateaux Mouches. Compagnie des Bateaux Mouches® invites you on a cruise to explore Paris from its best avenue: the Seine. Book online for brunch or lunch in a quirky restaurant, a romantic dinner on the water or simply a guided tour for an original way to visit Paris' most beautiful monuments, from one of our boats.

  15. THE 10 BEST Paris Boat Tours (Updated 2024)

    Boat Tours in Paris. We perform checks on reviews. 1. Paris Seine River Dinner Cruise with Live Music by Bateaux Mouches. See the iconic sights of Paris from the water, illuminated for the evening, on this Bateaux Mouches sightseeing dinner cruise…. 2. Paris Seine River Private Boat Tour. Welcome to 2024.

  16. How To Pick The Best Seine River Cruise In Paris

    Here are my recommendations for the best cruises: Bateaux Mouches cruise - a classic Seine River cruise and a favorite of travelers, you also have the option of a lunch or dinner cruise. Bateaux Parisiens cruise - another favorite, the ferry in this case is glass covered to give you even better views.

  17. 12 Best Seine River Cruises In Paris

    2. Tour 2: Dinner Cruise on the Seine River . ⭐️ RATING: 4.6/5 Stars | ⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 2.5 hours | 📍 LOCATION: Eiffel Tower | BOOK IT: For a special occasion as the best dinner cruise in paris A Seine River dinner cruise is a romantic way to experience Paris.While indulging in a delicious à-la-carte 3-course meal, you can take in the breathtaking views of Paris, illuminated for the ...

  18. Paris Boat Tours & Cruises: How to Book the Best?

    Book a sightseeing tour of the Seine in advance. A boat from Bateaux Parisiens heads under a bridge near Paris City Hall (Hotel de Ville) It's not strictly necessary to reserve in advance for most sightseeing cruises, but especially during peak tourist season it's something I recommend. You can compare popular sightseeing cruises on the ...

  19. The Best Luxury Boat Cruises in Paris

    Mid-sized Group Private Tours & Meal Cruises. For groups larger than six or for a sit-down meal, the Yachts de Paris have a fleet of eight luxury yachts which are excellent for diverse functions. The Cachemire, a 24-metre 1982 De Vries yacht inaugurated in June 2007 by its "Godfather" John Travolta, is the perfect boat for a small group of ...

  20. THE TOP 10 Paris Dinner Cruises (UPDATED 2024)

    Paris Theo Boat Seine River Italian Trattoria Style Dinner Cruise. 394. Book this group tour to experience Paris at night while cruising on the Seine, dining on a fresh Italian meal. This hassle-free experience is great for couples or families, and still has an intimate feel even though it is a group cruise.

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    Paris Dinner Cruise Booking Tips. Planning ahead is key when booking a memorable Paris River cruise. Follow these tips for an amazing hassle-free tour: Reserve Early: Popular cruises like Bateaux Mouches or intimate boats fill up weeks in advance, especially for peak summer months and weekends. Book your tickets at least 2-3 weeks out if possible.

  22. Paris Dinner Cruises : Choose the Best Dinner Cruise in 2024

    6.2K. A dinner on the Seine River on board a Parisian boat is an incredible experience. The view of the most famous monuments of the city is worth a trip, and menus are often refined. There are several options like the Bateaux-Mouches, the Bateaux Parisiens, the Capitaine Fracasse, or the Marina de Paris.Read our tips and recommendations to help you choose the best dinner cruise in Paris in 2024.