Paris is a very bike-friendly city and cars are used to sharing the road with cyclists and pedestrians. Designed specifically to allow people to get around Paris safely by bike, the lanes are marked out using white lines, signs and bicycle symbols. I am so encouraged by the new bicycling initiative in Paris and know that it will result in a whole new cycling culture in the city that will benefit urban cyclists as well as recreational tourists exploring Paris by bike! I know that if the weather conditions are bad, by law you even have to wear a kind of safetyvest as a cyclist in France. Social distancing - ride your bike. Cyclists have also been given the right to ride in both directions on certain one-way streets (20 mph zone). If you realy think it is to busy to cycle on the street, use the sidewalk and slowly cycle between the pedestrians. New laws came into force in 2016 for motorcyclists and scooter riders, regarding the requirement to carry a fluorescent hi viz vest or jacket while riding in France. Note that in USA Cycling’s COVID-19 Q&A with Dr. Michael Roshon, he recommended not riding outside during a shelter-in-place order (see the 27-minute mark). Riding a bike in Paris ain't for sissies. The five best routes to discover Paris by bike Hop on your trusty steed and soak up the city's finest sites by bike By Megan Carnegie Brown Posted: Monday July 17 2017 How can we collaborate to stop the spread of COVID-19? Helmets are available to rent. Alternative to public transport - ride your bike. Don't worry; if you stay safe during your crucial early experiences on a bike, it will give you more confidence when you're ready to take on more challenging conditions. During a time when safe is definitely better than sorry, for all of us, here are three guidelines that might help you keep your sanity and yet ride safely outdoors. Of particular interest here are several guided tours, especially those outside of Paris. While the metro subway system is extensive, it's generally safe and easy to use once you familiarize yourself with it a bit. If you’re going to bicycle in Paris, do yourself and your family a favor, wear a helmet. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Despite my personal bias against big-city bicycling, it’s important to note that urban cycling is dramatically changing throughout Europe, including Paris. World Bank, London bus travel now free after 20 drivers die from COVID-19, The link between air pollution and COVID-19 deaths, Here’s how lockdowns have improved air quality around the world, Minister for Ecological Transition Élisabeth Borne, 60% of "trips made in France in normal times are less than 5 kilometres, France announced tentative measures to ease lockdown, banning private cars from one of its main streets, the Rue de Rivoli, triple the rate of daily commutes taken on two wheels from 3% to 9% by 2024, get people around safely as lockdown eases, Airparif agency which monitors air quality in the greater Paris region, levels of harmful particulate matter have dropped by up to 60%. Bikes can be collected from their offices in the 3rd arrondissement or you can pay extra to have your bike delivered and picked up from your apartment. Sam also provides high quality service, assembly and disassembly and packing if you transport your own bike to Paris. This new Paris bicycling initiative is really great news for cyclists down the road, but what should you do if you are planning a trip to Paris in the next couple of years? Even better, take advantage of one of the many suburban bike tours offered by companies like Fat Tire Bike Tours or Paris Bike Company. If you are on a busy roundabout, even point with your arm in the direction you are going. For those interested in touring on their own, there are self-guided options with bike and GPS rental. Not surprisingly, Paris, or any large city would be one of the last places I’d ride a bike. One week on a bike in France and life takes on a different meaning! The bikes are unisex and are suited to people 14 years and older. Enter your email address to receive notifications of new posts by email. Just the thought of trying to maneuver a bicycle in and out of traffic with buses behind and in front of me, people and cars coming from all directions makes me twitch! One thing I always do is claim my spot on the road. With more than 700 kilometres of bike paths, Paris has become bicycle-friendly. There’s safety in numbers, so enjoy the security of bicycling with a guide and with a group of fellow cyclists. Better yet, splurge and take a guided tour. However there is a network of cycle ways in Paris. The Paris people also do this. If you are looking for a way to bicycle from Point A to Point B in Paris, Velib Paris may be for you. Can’t go to the gym or spin class - ride your bike. Yes, they will be angry and honk a lot. Fresh air & less isolation - ride your bike. The plan includes a cycle expressway with more than 80 km of two-way cycle paths spanning the city north, south, east and west. Also, if you just cross the roundabout in a straight line. Run by American Sam Weaver, Paris Bike Company is the place to go if you are looking to rent a road bike in town. Introduced in Paris in 2007, Vélib now includes 20,000 rental bikes available at 1,800 stations. Perhaps in the future when there are bicycle-only lanes I may change my mind. Custom travel services are also available. I hate traffic, crowds and congestion. Reservations are required. I love the adventure and unpredictability of experiencing France by bike. To see this in Paris I’m shocked. Pocket Paris: Cyclist and Pedestrian) which costs about €5 or the free Paris à Velo available from Paris town hall offices. Details on each of these options are included on the website. Private tours are available upon request. And always give clear directions which you go. They will need to go to the lane next to you to go around you. This includes roundtrip RER transportation to and from Versailles from central Paris. "We want this period to take a step forward in cycling culture, and that the bicycle is the little queen of deconfinement in a way," the Minister for Ecological Transition Élisabeth Borne said. I began to realize this when I spent a week exploring the glorious bicycle paths in and around Strasbourg. ... hardly a 15-minute walk or bike ride to the dentist or laundromat. Here’s a rundown of some of the current options and some thoughts from me. No walking tours here, it’s all about experiencing Paris by bike. We often get asked if it's safe to cycle in Paris. Paris Bike Tour rents bikes that are recent, safe and comfortable; complementary equipment, such as helmets, locks, raincoats or baskets are available on request (free of charge). Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, now mandatory to wear facemasks on public transport, Milan and Brussels are increasing the number of cycle lanes, London Underground could be overwhelmed by demand, Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International Public License, Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship. For bike hire in Paris, see our bike hire listings. I created Experience France By Bike to inspire recreational cyclists to visit France the slow way....by bike, and to be the best source of information for planning the perfect bicycling adventure. Finally, keep safe We all love to be out on our bikes, but some time without a ride or just riding indoors on the trainer is a sacrifice worth making to help get the pandemic under control. Cycling in Paris. Paris was the first major city to introduce a city-wide free bike system. As much as I love bicycling in France, I personally don’t feel comfortable bicycling in Paris or any other city of its size right now. The company also offers several guided tours of Paris at 32€. Meaning, don’t cycle at the utmost right of your lane but ride in the middle. You can read more about how years of campaigning by cyclists ultimately led to a more cycle friendly Paris on our guest blog by campaigner Audrey de Nazelle. Or pick up a helmet at a local sporting goods store and travel to one of Velib’s suburban locations. Wearing a helmet might give you some safety, wearing colorfull clothes or a safety vest might also help. See plan. Better yet, splurge and take a guided tour. Based on a new plan approved this spring, it appears that Paris is also looking to create a similar cyclist-friendly environment. Your guide will provide you with your RER ticket to return back to Paris at your own pace. These cycle expressways will be completely separate from car traffic, dramatically improving the safety of bicyclists of recreational cyclists as well as experienced urban cyclists. Group riding is fine - but stick to strict hygeine guidelines. I stayed at a boutique hotel so there weren't a ton of cabs waiting at any given whim, so Uber was the most convenient as there were plenty of cars around. Traffic is often heavy, pedestrians don't always follow road crossing rules, and the city is full of one-way streets, roundabouts and busy intersections. A one day ticket is 1,70€, a 7 day ticket 8€. Adult-child tandems are also available for 40-50€/day. Today it was windy and -10 in Copenhagen, NOT nice weather for riding bicycle. Regardless of where I cycle, I would never get on my bike without a helmet. If you already know a route to your school and it is possible to travel it on a bike, use it. I encourage readers to embrace the uncertainty of the road ahead and to take the path less traveled, exploring roads, towns and villages that you would never experience traveling by car. Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window), Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window), Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window), Top Resources To Kickstart Your Loire Bike Trip Planning, Favorite Loire Itineraries: Angers to Tours, Favorite Loire Itineraries: Amboise to Orleans, Exploring The Hill Towns Of Provence By Electric Bike, Currently being updated, Giverny By Bike, A Perfect Day Trip From Paris, Planning A Cycling Trip To France For 2021, Cycling Across France: 10 Favorite Places, 3 Favorite Websites for Cycling The Canal Du Midi, 10 Things I’m Glad I Had On My Summer Cycling Trip In France, My Summer Cycling Adventure In France: 10 Favorite Memories. I can’t say whether you should or shouldn’t bicycle in Paris. This spring, Paris announced a 5 year, 150 million€ bicycling initiative that will radically transform transportation in the City of Lights. There’s safety in numbers, so enjoy the security of bicycling with a guide and with a group of fellow cyclists. Make sure that you rent a bike from an agency that rents helmets unless you bring your own. Fat Tire Bike Tours offers some of the more popular guided bicycle tours in Paris, including tours to Giverny and Versailles, priced at 80€ and 90€ respectively. In the meantime, if you cycle in Paris, don’t forget to wear a helmet! Anyone who does is committing an offence. Started in 2007, the system has 20,000 bikes for let at 1,800 bike stations in Paris and 30 surrounding cities. Where the helmet is optional. This 5 year plan will double the number of cycling paths in Paris to 1400km. Velib Paris has a terrific website that will answer almost any question that you may have about renting a bike through the system. Find a safe route to school. You'll get a young, entertaining, often foul-mouthed, sometimes informative guide who will give you a breezy introduction to the city and a close-up look at back streets few tourists ever see. I’ll look forward to keeping you up to date on improvements to the Paris cycling infrastructure. More were injured. I’m purely a recreational cyclist, and I’m most at home along riverbanks, on quiet vineyard trails and on cycle paths in the countryside. In this case it will be hard for any car to try to pass you. Vélib' If you use the bike longer, you pay fees according to the usage charge schedule: 1st additional half hour is 1€, 2nd additional half hour is 2€ and 3rd additional half hour and more are 4€. Source of sunshine -ride your bike. Guided bike tours are popular in cities throughout Europe (especially Amsterdam, Barcelona, Bruges, Paris, Munich, Berlin, and Budapest), as well as many bike-friendly countryside areas. All participants over 12 years of age must be able to ride a bike. Bicycle hire in Paris and cycling accommodation in Paris. See here for Paris train maps and rules for taking bikes on Paris trains. But I can say that bicycling can be dangerous, especially in big cities and to ride without a helmet is a bad decision. However I have seen many seperate bike paths also in the busy center of Paris. Paris a Velo c’est Sympa rents bikes and offers several 3 hour tours. Velib Paris does not rent bike helmets and the system does not rent kid’s bikes. Paris' bike routes are detailed in guides such as Paris de Poche: Cycliste et Piéton (i.e. All participants under 18 must be accompanied by an adult and carry proof of age documentation. Rates range from 12€ /1/2 day for a city bike to 20€/ 1/2 day for an e-bike. Take your time by taking roads less traveled, and you'll be able to focus more on the art of riding without worrying about avoiding dangerous distractions. Both of these actions will significantly enhance the safety of those traveling by bike. From Paris to Portland, ... and into welcoming, safe streets and squares. About two years ago I got lucky, and a friend of mine actually gave me a mountain bike that had been used by one of his sons, now gone to university. If You Do Ride Outside. Stretch out your arm to left or right as far and as long as you can. In France, the bicycle could play a key role in that, as the government plans to encourage people to cycle more after the lockdown measures are eased, to keep pollution levels down and people safe. If you’re looking for a low-cost bicycling adventure, read my article, Giverny By Bike, A Perfect Day Trip From Paris. France is preparing to ease COVID-19 lockdown measures on 11 May. Thanks so much for your very helpful comments! Just ignore that. Even better, take advantage of one of the many suburban bike tours offered by companies like Fat Tire Bike Tours or Paris Bike Company. Strasbourg embraces cycling and cyclists, making you feel safe traveling the city streets on two wheels. However when you build SAFE bikeways, #AllAgesAbilities , people of all ages and abilities do ride … I liked your comment about bicycling on the sidewalks, but I have been reprimanded several times for doing so by walkers….so as you said, you need to be firm about claiming your turf! The first 30 minutes of each rental are always free. The rental system has been designed to be as simple as possible. To make your ride safer and more enjoyable a variety of accessories are offered: helmets, baskets, rain-ponchos, baby-seats, maps of Paris. … Stay 1.5m from others - ride your bike. Cycling in France is the ultimate slow travel adventure, an opportunity to see it through the back door in a way few tourists experience. Boundary markings are placed on the road, and occasionally on pavements or bus lanes. High quality road bikes like Cannondale are the only bikes rented here. See here for bike-friendly accommodation in Paris. There is an Ibis Budget hotel with garage at Rueil Malmaison, 800m from the RER (express transit rail) station with direct trains to central Paris. Riding in the slush and snow will kick a lot of salty, dirty water onto your bike’s parts, which can cause corrosion and damage over time. Paris Bike Tour offers you everything you need to explore Paris your way. TripSavvy / Taylor McIntyre Paris boasts one of the world's safest and most efficient public transportation systems. This on-your-own adventure can be done easily in a day, including a picnic lunch and train ride to and from Paris. One should be the one you take most of the time and the second one should be a backup. The Fat Tire Bike Tour to Versailles, although appealing and I'm sure lots of fun, is a bit pricey at about $85 per person.Seems one could take the RER to Versailles from Paris, rent a bike once there with the whole trip costing much, much less.Although this plan would be sans guide and other participant riders, it should still be fun and perhaps even more interesting. Around the world, public transport is starting to move again with new safety measures. Maybe not. In addition, more than 7000 intersections will be redesigned to allow bicyclists to turn right at any time and speed limits will be lowered on most city streets to 30km/h. We’ve spent 14 years with travelers like you developing the best bike tours in Paris, featuring smaller groups, safe routes, English-speaking guides, local secrets, insider food tips, incredible photo ops, and more. Important side note: your credit card will be charged a 150€ deposit for the term of your ticket. Helmet rental is available. Rental rates begin at 50€ for the first day and 30€/day for days 2-7. I have cycled in Paris a fair bit – the first time was more than 20 years ago; these days, I pass through quite regularly – often en route to somewhere else. Riding a bike in Paris can be stressful, and not ideal in terms of safety conditions. Our latest model bikes are light and comfortable. Located near the Saint-Sebastien-Froissart (line 8) and Richard-Lenoir (line 5) metro stations, the agency rents e-bikes, city bikes and touring bikes. BB (Before Bike), I dreamed of floating along Parisian streets as I once did on the bike paths along the beach in Santa Monica and Venice, CA. Existing bicycle paths will be expanded to link with the new axis and new paths will be added. It’s introducing a $20 million scheme to get more people cycling - to cut pollution and keep people safe. I used Uber about 5 or 6 times last week in Paris and it was perfectly fine - safe and rather quick. Still I agree you need to be very carefull. Paris Bike Tour offers basic city bike rentals starting at 15€ for 8 hours to 20€ for 24 hours, delivery available upon request. While all of our tours maintain a leisurely pace, we want our guests to have fun and be safe, so being able to ride a bike is paramount. It’s safe, fun and perfect for beginner or experienced cyclists. Meanwhile I have cycled in Paris a few times and yes the streets are busy! Next to it that as a cyclist you are allowed to use the bus and taxi lanes. In the years since Velib was launched in Paris, 8 people have died while on a Velib. It’s available 24-7, no advance booking is needed and you can buy a 1 day or 7 day ticket online or at any Velib station. To avoid taking bikes into Paris, find a place to stay in the suburbs. When I see tourists riding bikes anywhere in France without helmets, I shake my head. Use Google Maps and find two bicycle friendly routes to your school. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! I much prefer the quiet, relaxing pace of bicycling in the French countryside and along river and vineyard trails where I’m often the only person on the road. Package price includes bike rental and admission ticket. The ambitious plan will double the number of cycle paths across the city by 2020. Currently, you can buy one but you can't ride it on a UK public road, cycle lane or pavement.