Dining and Drinking en Plein Air in Paris

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The mighty river Seine is a focal point in the City of Light. Many activities revolve around it. When the weather is glorious and Paris is all blue skies, nothing can be more enjoyable than dining or having your favorite beverage quai-side or cruising down the river. (Or alongside it in a glass-ceilinged bus or lively bike cart.)

Here are some of our recommendations for Paris drinking and dining experiences in the open air.

Dining and Drinking Outside in Paris


Diners on the Bustronome double-decker bus meet at the Arc de Triomphe at the corner of Avenue Kleber in the 16th arrondissement. Through the glass-ceilinged buses, you can glide along just above the chaos of Paris traffic, with unobstructed views of the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, or Notre Dame. The price for lunch is 70 euros per person for four courses, and dinner is 120 euros per person for six courses. Your meal will include changing menu items like an appetizer of gravlax de saumon, and a main course of cabillaud (cod) or filet de boeuf. For dessert try the nougat glace. (They also offer a full vegetarian menu, as well as a children’s menu.)

Telephone: 09 54 44 45 55

Bus Toqué

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In my opinion, Bus Toqué offers more value for money with its carefully selected chef suggestions and the addition of a cheese course. Enticing food choices include an appetizer of green pea gazpacho with mint sherry vinegar, a main course of guinea fowl, an assorted cheese plate, and a dessert of mousse au citron.

Lunch starts at 12:30pm and lasts until 2pm at a price of 95 euros per person. Dinner tours are available at 6:30pm for 1.5 hours at a cost of 118 euros per person. But you can also opt for a truly grand epicurean experience for 2 hours starting at 8:30pm at 142 euros per person, including an apéritif coupe de champagne to sip on as one admires Paris’s monuments magnificently illuminated at night. This bus has a tour guide on board as well as audio tablets on each table explaining the historic sites.

Telephone: 01 87 21 21 86

Bateaux Parisiens

This is the cruise experience I take my friends on when they visit. Although, like everything in Paris, prices for the Bateaux Parisiens have increased. It is well worth it.  There are lunch and dinner cruises with the evening cruise at 8:30pm offering a dance band with a repertoire of French songs, including favorite tunes from Edith Piaf and the like.

The lunch cruise, which departs at 12:45pm from the Pont d’Iéna at the base of the Eiffel Tower, is 69 euros per person with a 3 course lunch and accompanying wines.

There are two dinner cruises. The one that departs at 6:15pm and lasts for 1.5 hours is the most reasonably priced at 109 euros per person with appetizer, main course, dessert, and wine. But the 8:30pm cruise of 2.5 hours, which takes place as the sun is setting over Paris, has quite the festive atmosphere. Price per person depends on where one wants to sit on the ship. The most expensive option is in the bow of the ship at 215 euros per person. It is an all out dining experience with a glass of champagne on arrival, an aperitif, and then an appetizer, main course, cheese plate, and dessert, all with accompanying wines. Other dinner prices are 139 euros and 149 euros per person. In my opinion there is no bad seat on the Bateaux Parisiens. 

Examples of some menu choices include foie gras as an appetizer, followed by sea bass or guinea fowl as a main course, and a Peach Vacherin cake as dessert.

Telephone: 01 76 64 14 45

Paris Beer Bike

Paris Beer Bike is a unique way to get exercise and drink your favorite beer at the same time while exploring the city. A 1.5 hour tour of Paris is 30 euros per person, and includes 3 beers per person and a limit of 11 people per cart, plus the driver. The meeting spot is Place du Trocadéro, facing the Eiffel Tower.

Telephone: 07 56 97 32 33

Byke & Co.

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Byke & Co. offers three options for cycling around Paris: Le Byke Tour at 1.5 hours for 25 euros per person with cocktail mixers and snack; The Beer Bike at 32 euros per hour for the same amount of time but with a whopping amount of beer and savory snacks; and Le Byke Brunch at 39 euros per person with picnic items of pastries, French smoothies, mixed cheese and charcuterie platter and drinks. (Its duration is 2 hours.)

Téléphone : 07 67 07 06 89

Fat Tire Tours

Fat Tire Tours offers a “Picnic Like a Parisian” bike tour, which is a fun way to learn about food while pedaling a bike around town, and ends with a picnic in the Champs de Mars park at the foot of the Eiffel Tower. It is €39 per person and lasts 3.5 hours. The tour begins at the Eiffel Tower and explores open-air markets, food emporiums, and wine shops in Paris. Each rider can pick up their favorite food items and wine, and enjoy them at the final park picnic.

Telephone: 01 82 88 80 96

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