Mikes bike tour-segways in Paris??

Jan 19th, 2004, 05:05 PM
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Mikes bike tour-segways in Paris??

We are going to Paris in April and I thought the segway tour given by Mike's bike tours looked like fun. Has anyone done this? Did you do the day tour or evening tour?? Thanks. Also was it difficult to get the hang of it?
cparris is offline  
Jan 24th, 2004, 01:07 PM
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We are hoping to do this as well. Was wondering if our 8 year old could do it. Anyone?
sterling17 is offline  
Jan 24th, 2004, 01:17 PM
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a friend has done this. I think it's no more than 8 that goes on tour.
cigalechanta is offline  
Jan 24th, 2004, 06:12 PM
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cigalechanta is offline  
Jan 24th, 2004, 06:35 PM
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My husband and I did one of the Segway Tours offered by Mike's Bikes in November. We took the day tour and had an absolute blast. (Night tours weren't offered in November because it was too cold in the evening.) The guides / instructors are great, and we had no trouble at all learning to ride one...and I'm somewhat klutzy. With basic instructions and a few turns around the practice area you'll be ready in a flash. Do it! We'll be back in Paris in June for a few days and plan to take the evening tour.

Re the question about whether an eight-year-old can go. I believe one has to meet a basic height standard and be within a certain weight range to take a Segway Tour. If you don't find the specifics on the website (URL below), I'd email the company and ask, giving your child's height and weight.

http://www.parissegwaytours.com/

MaisonMetz is offline  
Jan 24th, 2004, 07:52 PM
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Hi - my husband and I did Mike's evening tour in July - wasn't dark until the end of the tour that time of year. Should you do it? We still talk about it - one of the highights and a great way to cover a lot of ground.

Do not expect the kind of tour where you learn about the sites - our guide was not familiar (from the states), but it's not that kind of experience. I would question an 8 year old doing this as you are on streets as well as sidewalks and the things can go quite fast. You start with the "slow key" and half way through (after ice cream on Isle St Louis and a recharge of the segway batteries) you get a faster key. The segways are highly responsive to your weight shift and even more so when the faster key is used. I compare it to riding on a magic carpet - or at least a horse! My husband tried to stop it by leaning back which made his steed back up only faster until a wall intervened.

It's pricey, but a great experience - wouldn't have missed it!
bev3 is offline  
Jan 24th, 2004, 08:23 PM
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I'm quite surprised that no Euro-purists have chimed in bemoaning/whining about the advent of this American invention onto sacred Paris landscapes. An army of inexperienced two-wheeled hellions on the sidewalks seems a trifle more intrusive than one little Starbucks storefront, if you ask me.

Funny how selective people can be.
KS452 is offline  
Jan 24th, 2004, 09:10 PM
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We did a bike tour to Versailles with Mike's. Yes, a highlight of our trip. Ages 8-62. Hope to return someday & do Segway.
janeg is offline  
Jan 25th, 2004, 04:06 PM
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How long did one of these bike tours take? Are they morning long tours? I'm also not as in shape as the rest of my family. What level of rider would you need to be for a bike tour?
Thanks,
Ellie
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Jan 25th, 2004, 04:19 PM
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Ellie, there's a lot of information about the bike tours on the basic Mike's Bike Tours website (URL below). We only did their daytime Segway tour, so I don't have any first-hand bike experience to share.

http://www.mikesbiketoursparis.com/
MaisonMetz is offline  
Jan 26th, 2004, 06:55 AM
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I haven't ridden the segways, but did Mike's evening bicycle last spring. It was one of the highlights of my vacation. YMMV, but I can't imagine having enjoyed the segway as much as I enjoyed the bicycle tour, it would have been too much about the segway and proportionately less about Paris by night.

Keith
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Jan 29th, 2004, 08:36 AM
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Did you feel like the bike ride was at all dangerous with the traffic...especially at night? Also do you remember what time the night ride started and finished. It is really alot less money then the segway. I have 3 teens so I think they might enjoy this.
cparris is offline  
Jan 29th, 2004, 11:20 AM
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We met up at 7PM and finished about 11:30.

The tour starts on some quiet streets and sidewalks, so we were used to the 5-speed bikes and moving with the group by the time we were on serious streets. Most of the busier streets had bike lanes.

I felt totally comfortable with the traffic, though I did think that I wouldn't have wanted to be responsible for the group.

There were 19 on my tour. All but one French teen were from North America. No one seemed to have trouble keeping up. By the time we got to the boat ride (about 10PM) I somewhat knew everyone and it was nice socializing during the illuminations cruise.

The bikes all had names. Mine was named King Louis.

Keith

BTW: Mike's also provides public internet access and offers to assist people with travel questions.
Keith is offline  
Jan 29th, 2004, 12:10 PM
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I did an evening Segway tour last July. I would echo alot of the comments made previously. First, I agree that if you want to learn about the city, this tour isn't for you -- the tour guides aren't that knowledeable and just regurgitate some facts they must have memorized somewhere. However, it is still a fun tour. I found that the novelty of riding the Segway was the highlight and that eventually, the sights along the way were just an afterthought. The tour could have taken place in the neighborhood around my house and I still would have had fun because riding those Segways is a blast. They are also very easy to get the hang of -- you spend a while outside Mike's Bike Tours' office practicing before you actually get out on the streets and begin the tour.
One thing that I didn't like about it is that it is an exhausting tour. After all, you stand on that little platform on the Segway for four hours with only one opportunity to stretch your legs. By the end, my feet were sore and my legs were incredibly stiff. Stand up where ever you're at now and stand there, without moving, for 4 hours and you'll get an idea of what it is like.
Like I said, I did the evening Segway tour. Immediately preceeding it, I was on one of their Versailles bike tours. Overall, I was pretty disappointed with that. The tour was supposed to start at 10 am, but of course until everyone was there and ready to go we were already 20-30 minutes behind schedule. Then we had to ride to the train station, take the train out to Versailles, and ride to a market in town to pick up some picnic food items before we even got to Versailles. That took almost two hours. Then we rode to see the little hamlet, then rode past the Petite Trianon, then stopped briefly at the Grand Trianon (but didn't go inside), then rode to the end of the Canal and ate our picnic, then rode toward the Palace. Until we got inside the Palace, it was very late afternoon and all audio guides were gone so we were left to run through the Palace quickly without any information describing the rooms. Then we had to ride back to the train station, take the train back to Paris, then ride back to their offices. Overall, I didn't think it was a very good use of my time. I definitely wouldn't do it again.
klg42 is offline  
Jan 29th, 2004, 12:14 PM
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Elearit:
We didn't ride to Versailles. Rode from Mike's to RER, put bikes on RER, got off at V, biked around with guide from Mike's. Lots of stops, bought picnic lunch, ate it by lake. All flat. Left Paris at 10a, home by 4p or so. A few stairs at train station, but nice strong folks carried my bike up them for me. Perfect for this 63 year-old, slightly overweight grandma.
janeg is offline  
Mar 15th, 2004, 04:16 PM
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Jul 16th, 2004, 10:10 AM
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cigalechanta is offline  
Jul 16th, 2004, 10:21 AM
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Are Mike's Bike Tours the same thing as Fat Tire Bike Tours? We're planning to do one of the night ones.
strass is offline  
Jul 16th, 2004, 10:22 AM
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See http://www.fattirebiketoursparis.com/bikes/bike-tour/ (formerly Mike's Bike Tours, it says).
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Jul 16th, 2004, 10:55 AM
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I just did the night Segway tour with Mike's this past May.

It was a highlight of our time in Paris, and I will echo what others have said about the tour. What you learn about the sights you see on the tour is not unlike one of those hop on/hop off bus tours - kind of like "Paris lite". The tour is more about the fun of zipping around on the Segway through the beautiful city of Paris.

Do not do any extensive walking prior to the tour - when I was finally able to step off the Segway at the end of our tour, my feet were numb and my calves were aching.

I don't know about taking a child younger than 12 or so on the tour - besides the weight/height restrictions, these things can go pretty fast, and a good part of the tour is spent on the streets alongside traffic, and you're not necessarily in a bike lane all the time.

During the tour we got quite a few stares, and a few people came up and wanted to check the Segways out. There were some glares and muttered comments about something or another Americans - these were usually by elderly Parisians, but definitely in the minority.

Most just seemed curious - and we were certainly a sight - wearing bright blue vests with reflector tape all over it, trailing behind our guide through the streets of Paris like a flock of deranged ducklings.
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