Notre Dame Island with Medieval History of Paris Guided Tour

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Notre Dame Island with Medieval History of Paris Guided Tour
from £27.76
Explore the island where Paris evolved from a pagan settlement to medieval superpower on a 1.5hr walking tour. Discover the story of the balancing act between religion and government that led to a bloody revolution and changed the world. View the majesty of the medieval cathedrals and learn how they have survived and reflected the major changes that created the Europe of today.
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In Brief

Paris, France
1 hour 30 minutes
Monday and Friday
Important InfoInfo
This is a typical itinerary for this product

Stop At: Ile de la Cite, 75001 Paris France

Immerse yourself in the Paris of the middle ages on a 1.5hr walking tour of Île de la Cité with an expert historian guide. Founded on a river crossing by a pagan tribe, this settlement became a global leader by trying out a range of dramatic forms of rule over the course of hundreds of years.

Along with your guide, you’ll wander through the picture-book Paris of Place Dauphine which was built by a king and designed for infinite games of boules. You’ll pass by the brooding Conciergerie where they held members of the royalty while the guillotine was sharpened.

At the stunning Palais de Justice, you’ll see where Marie Antoinette was sentenced to death. Sainte-Chapelle is also nearby, still standing where it was built as a chapel for the royals and to hold the fragments of Christian faith which French Knights brought back from the crusades. If the spire looks familiar it is because it was the model for the one on Notre Dame which was recently destroyed by fire.

As you explore further into the island, you’ll discover the roots of pagans, the remains of Romans and the faith of kings and queens which led them to believe they had a divine right to rule.

Your tour will also take you across the Seine to the Left Bank, the playground of thousands of students and artists such as Joyce and Hemingway. While they were attracted by famous bookstores like Shakespeare and Co you will visit it to get the best views of Notre Dame Cathedral*.

The Cathedral is, of course, currently closed due to the savage fire that ripped through it, but the exterior can be viewed on the tour. Its flying buttresses still stand strong under the scaffolding which surrounds it as restoration continues. Your guide will fill you in on how it became the Grand Dame of France and why its architecture was a radical departure from European churches of the time. The global outpouring of grief after the fire is a testament to the esteem that this cathedral is held in. You will discover how it has survived more than one occasion like this.
*Please note that the streets around the Cathedral are closed until further notice. Therefore, we won’t be able to access the square in front of Notre Dame and see the 0km point. However, your guide will ensure to take you through alternative routes so you can get as close as possible to the Cathedral

Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes

Pass By: Seine River, 75001 Paris France



  • Visit to Ile de la Cite
  • Local guide
  • Small group of 25 people max
  • Headsets when appropriate
  • Optional Access to Corciergerie, prison where Marie-Antoinette was kept (when booked)


  • Gratuities
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off

Departure Point

Statue équestre d'Henri IV, 15 Place du Pont Neuf, 75001 Paris, France

Returns To

Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris, 6 Parvis Notre-Dame - Pl. Jean-Paul II, 75004 Paris, France

Additional Information

  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Please note that the streets around the Cathedral are closed until further notice. Therefore we won’t be able to access the square in front of Notre Dame and see the 0km point.
  • Near public transportation
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 25 travelers

Booking Information

You can present either a paper or an electronic voucher for this activity.

Cancellation Terms

This trip is fully refundable up to 96 hours prior to the commencement of your trip.

Booking Terms and Conditions

When you book this trip, you need to read and accept the terms and conditions for booking our day trips in excursions.

Scoring an average traveller rating of 5 out of 5 based on the last 24 recent reviews

Our original tour had to be altered due to the unfortunate fire at Notre Dame. However, the tour that they switched us to was phenomenal. Our tour guide, Shannon, was amazing and guided us through the French history as we walked the streets of Ile de la Cite. Thank you, Shannon, for a wonderful tour!
• Submitted 24 Jul 2019
Beside the fact the tour having to be changed to a walking tour and time change(which the email got miss placed somewhere) due to the fire at Notre Dame. We were very happy with the the guide’s Hugo,humours way of telling us the story of the Notre Dame chapel . King Henry the 4 and the Sainte-Chapelle . We enjoyed it very much and worth the changes
• Submitted 03 Jul 2019
We enjoyed the trip very much.The guide was excellent and give us a lott information.Will do it again in future
• Submitted 03 Jul 2019
We were fortunate to have Shannonas our private guide. She was prompt, knowledgeable, and had interesting anecdotes. Worth every penny!
• Submitted 07 Jan 2019
I’ve been in this tour before and went again with friends who haven’t been before and I’m so glad I did. Leo had stories and fun facts that I hadn’t heard before. He was engaging, informative and fun!!!
• Submitted 03 Oct 2018
Loved the tour - the duration, the information and particularly our tour, guide Charlie. We came away knowing so much more about French history, architecture as well as Notre Dame.
• Submitted 01 Oct 2018
This was a very interesting tour. Charley was very knowledgeable and friendly. Worth the price to skip the line. would do this again.
• Submitted 29 Sep 2018
Our tour guide, Charlie, was superb. He was informative and funny without lecturing the tout group. He kept the tour moving without feeling rushed. This was a highlight and I would highly recommend it.
• Submitted 26 Sep 2018
Loved this, again I felt quite privileged not having to wait in line. There was a service on the time of our allocated visit which was cool you got to see some of it, but we also got ushered out of a small area because of it which shortened our time there. Totally recommend the tower climb, so worth it once you are up there. Our guide was great, tour very organised and precise.
• Submitted 19 Sep 2018
the view from the top was fantastic. Second best view in Paris
• Submitted 13 Sep 2018
The tour guide made the best tour we had while in Paris. Very informative, polite, funny and holds your attention. It was outstanding.
• Submitted 20 Aug 2018
We love the information that was provided in this tour. Highly recommend.
• Submitted 19 Aug 2018
Great tour! Our guide, Anitoli , was excellent! Personable, knowledgeable and humorous! Mad the tour enjoyable and informative!
• Submitted 30 Jul 2018
Highly recommended if you want to avoid spending 3-4 hours in line to get into Notre Dame.
• Submitted 23 Jul 2018
Nice one hour tour of the surrounding area followed by SKIPPING THE HOURS LONG LINE and walking straight into NOTRE DAME.
• Submitted 23 Jul 2018
The guide was very knowledgeable about the history of French aristocracy and the Notre Dame Cathedral.
• Submitted 23 Jul 2018
A very satisfying walking tour of the area near and including Notre Dame cathedral. Our guide, Georgie, was incredibly knowledgeable and personable. A true professional, she learned all the participants names before the tour started. She is a passionate expert on gothic architecture along with possessing a depth of knowledge on French/Paris history. Provided a deeper understanding during this tour than a semester course. She has multiple years of experience leading tours in Rome and Paris. Georgie made what was always going to be a fun day into an extraordinary one. My wife and I have had the good fortune to take many great tours around the world. We agreed Georgie was probably the finest guide we have ever had. My highest recommendation for any Paris tour she leads (catacombs, etc).
• Submitted 15 Jul 2018
The guide was very knowledgeable and we skipped the lines. He pointed out architectural details we did not know. His historical knowledge was outstanding.
• Submitted 09 Jul 2018
This tour of Nortre Dame and Île de la Cité was fantastic. What made it so good was our guide Charley! He was extremely knowledgeable and was excellent at telling the stories and history of the island and cathedral. I would highly highly recommend this tour.
• Submitted 09 Jul 2018
We thought we had missed the tour but the guide saw us sitting there and introduced himself. The guide was engaging and informational. We enjoyed the ability to go to the top of the Cathedral.
• Submitted 10 Jun 2018
very happy whit all the tour that I book whit This company Viator
• Submitted 24 Apr 2018
This tour was excellent and I would highly recommend it. Our guide was really exceptional in that she was fun, knowledgeable and very effective as a guide.
• Submitted 09 Apr 2018
Our guide Ferret spelling? was both entertaining and extremely knowledgeable, particularly with regard to Notre Dame. Well worth the money.
• Submitted 09 Apr 2018
Outstanding! worth every penny Randa was absolutely awesome, best tour we've ever had! would do this again!
• Submitted 04 Apr 2018

In Brief

Paris, France
1 hour 30 minutes
Monday and Friday

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