5 of the best Seine River Cruises

by Paul Joseph  |  Published January 26, 2023

One of the world’s most famous rivers, visitors to Paris can experience the Seine at close quarters by booking on to a wide choice of river cruises.

(Photo: Artur Staszewski via Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0)

Cutting through the heart of Paris, the gentle waterway is the epicentre of the French capital. Lined with booksellers and bordered by beautiful boulevards, historic cafés and charming neighbourhoods, taking a relaxing boat tour down its waters is a fantastic way to get acquainted with the City of Light. Along the way, you’ll pass under beautiful bridges, and see some of Paris’s most famous buildings and monuments. If that all takes your fancy, here’s our pick of 5 great Seine river cruises.

Champagne Tasting River Cruise

Add some extra sparkle to your river adventure with a champagne-tasting cruise in the company of an expert sommelier. The 1-hour tour begins at the dock by the Eiffel Tower as the evening settles on the city. Here, you’ll receive a personal reception aboard the boat before making your way to the front to meet your sommelier. As you set off, you’ll learn about the distinguished French wineries and styles through three champagne tastings – a Brut, Demi-sec, and Rosé – while admiring the great riverside landmarks like the Musée d’Orsay, and the Louvre. The tour ends at the Grand Palais where your cruise price includes free entrance to explore the historic museum complex. From €69.75 per person.

Book at Viator

Night River Cruise with Waffle Tasting

(Photo: Global Tours And Tickets / Courtesy GetYourGuide)

Combine an after-dark river cruise with a chance to sample some famous Parisian waffles on this tour experience. After boarding by the Eiffel Tower, you’ll embark on a 1-hour cruise equipped with multilingual audio guides, marvelling at the city’s famous landmarks illuminated in the night air. Along the way, you’ll pass such iconic attractions as the Louvre, Notre Dame Cathedral, and Orsay Museum. Before or after the cruise, depending on your preference, you’ll get to savour a mouth-watering waffle at the casual stall located just in front of the dock. From €18.50 per person.

Book at GetYourGuide

River Cruise and Paris Canals Tour

See Paris’s legendary landmarks and lesser-known gems from the water on this 2.5-hour cruise down both the River Seine and Canal Saint Martin. After making your way to the embarkation point near either the Musée d’Orsay or the Villette Basin (depending on departure time), you’ll settle into a seat in the inside cabin or outside deck of your boat before going on your way. Over the ensuing hours, you’ll glide past riverside monuments like Notre Dame and the Louvre, and then explore a side of Paris many tourists miss as you float through the tunnels, footbridges and locks of the city’s historic canal system. Live onboard commentary from your guide illuminates the story of these picturesque waterways. From €22.60 per person.

Book at Viator

City and River Tour on an Amphibious Bus

(Photo: Les Canards de Paris / Courtesy GetYourGuide)

Can’t decide whether to explore Paris by land or sea? This 1.45-hour tour allows you to do both, all in the same trip, and indeed the same vehicle. Travelling aboard an amphibious bus, you’ll dive into the famous sights of Paris and the Seine, while being regaled with insightful commentary along the way. Highlights include seeing the Seine Musicale, the Saint-Cloud gardens, and boats owned by local people, as well as more prestigious places of interest such as the Eiffel Tower, the Alexander III Bridge, the Champs-Elysées, the Arc of Triumph, and the Trocadero. Be sure to wave at the sailboats and kayaks on the river before heading back to your starting point. From €38.75 per person.

Book at GetYourGuide

Private Romantic River Cruise, Dinner, and Illuminations Tour

For a more exclusive and intimate River Seine experience, this private evening combo tour complete with a gourmet dinner may well fit the bill. You’ll sip champagne as you glide down the river, before later sitting down to enjoy a gourmet dinner for two at an upscale restaurant near the famous Champs-Elysées. After dinner, you’ll take a private tour by car of the beautiful city at its best – when it’s lit up at night – taking in illuminated sights like the Arc de Triomphe, the Pantheon, and the Eiffel Tower. The tour price includes a hotel pick-up and drop-off, your river cruise with champagne, your 3-course dinner with champagne or wine, and your private car tour. From €652 per group (2 people).

Book at Viator