A reader asked about the Batobus and its frequency between stops. She is traveling with small children and thought it would be a good way to give their little legs a rest. The Batobus is a delightful way to see Paris from the water. The regular Seine boats are round trip. The advantage of the Batobus is jumping on and off.
How big is your hurry? It is not the fastest way to get around. Here is what I responded to her questions about the RER, Eiffel Tower and the Metamorphosis show.
Substituting RER travel, the Eiffel Tower and Saint-Michel
The Batobus has the same route as always and appears to be at the same easy pace every time we see it glide down the Seine or people jump on and off (even Japanese wedding parties).
You probably have seen that they have an ambiguous time schedule on the Batobus Web site. I read the table as 17 to 35 minutes between stops depending on the season. It is not the quickest route, that is sure. It depends on the age of the children whether they want to wait, walk or use an alternative.
Buses run along the Seine on either side. Traffic direction is going opposite to where you want to go on the left bank for the show (Notre-Dame and Saint-Michel area).
Why not walk across the bridge from the Eiffel Tower (Pont d’Iena) the bus stop for 72 is to the right once you cross the Seine on the bridge.
The GPS sign will tell you how long to the next bus; the map at the stop will show you where the stops are.
Take bus 72 past the Ponts (Bridges) de l’Alma, des Invalides, Alexandre III, de la Concorde, L.S. Senghor, Royal, Carrousel, des Arts, Neuf, au Change and exit the bus at Pont Notre Dame (Google Maps should help you with these locations). Then you have passed all of the highlights above ground.
Walk through Ile de la Cité past Notre Dame and down the stairs to the boats.
The RATP (transportation service in Paris) has many maps (plans) to download on their Web site. The bus map with the above information will be helpful (the maps are free at any metro stations). Click on any of them.
Reservations for the 3 p.m. magic show
You should have time to eat and take the bus. The ride is shorter than an hour with lots of sightseeing along the way, but factor in the walking.
We have been to the Théâtre Métamorphosis a few times. Both with nieces and nephews (American) and with nieces and nephews (French). The most recent for birthdays (she turned 11 and he turned 16). They arranged a birthday surprise on stage and we had cake for dessert.
It’s magic — so it is easily understood. If they hear you speaking English, the master of ceremonies picks up on it (he watches everyone who boards the boat). I believe he is preparing for the show and sizing up the audience.
It’s fun and I recommend combining the evening dinner + spectacle. Reserve and plan on dining as early as possible so you don’t have to rush for the show. Some of the people serving are also in the show.