Vedettes du Pont Neuf & Traiteur Chez Zhang (Paris)

This is my first day in Paris and my forth day of my London & Paris trip.

Click here to return to the London & Paris overall.

In this post, I will be covering:
Vedettes du Pont Neuf
- Traiteur Chez Zhang

The Seine River from Pont Neuf
Have you noticed that many cities in the world are close to bodies of water? The River Thames flows through London. Chao Praya River cuts through Bangkok. Even a small country like Singapore has the Singapore River! Being close to bodies of water is one of the important features that influence the growth of cities. Bodies of water offer sources of drinking water, food, transportation.

What makes the Seine river unique? For centuries, poets, painters, philosophers, novelists, architects, lovers, suicides and tourists have been mesmerized and seduced by the Seine River. During Spring, couples attach a lovelock onto the railings of the Pont des Arts and toss the key into the river to symbolise eternal love. In the sweltering summer, people swim in floating pools and relax on stretched out sandy beaches. During Autumn, the trees lining the river turn golden brown while in Winter, the short daylight allows for lightshows of the Eiffel Tower to be reflected onto the Seine River. The Seine River is an integral part of life in Paris! It has also been rewarded the UNESCO World Heritage status. Taking a boat ride on the Seine River is a great way to get familiar with many of the city's stunning monuments, historical buildings and ornate bridges.

There are plenty of bateaux (plural for boat in French) companies in Paris. We picked Les Vedettes du Pont Neuf as they are one of the trusted and popular operators who provides open discounted tickets when bought online! At 11€ (18/05/14), it is one of the cheapest on the Seine River. Attached below is the photo of the boat that I sailed with. 
Parisis (Photo from Vedettes du Pont Neuf)

I could not take a photo of the boat because I was on it and when I disembarked the boat, I was busy looking through the souvenir photographs on sale. There will be a photographer who will be walking around the ship to get your photos taken just like a rollercoaster ride. There is no obligations to purchase the photos at the end of the trip. I can't remember the prices of the photos but they were reasonable at the point of purchase. The picture below is the dock for the Vedettes du Pont Neuf which starts from the base of the Pont Neuf Bridge. The Pont Neuf Bridge is the oldest bridge on the river in Paris. A great way to start our sightseeing in Paris!
The dock of Vedettes du Pont Neuf

Taking the boat ride down River Seine allows you to view many of Paris' best-known landmarks from a different vantage point. To name a few, Musée d'Orsay, Alexandre III Bridge, Eiffel Tower and the Notre-Dame. There will be live commentary in both French and English or you could rely on one of the brochures that they have provided at the docking station. Below are some of the photos taken on the boat ride! The ride itself takes an hour, arrive early (15 minutes) to get a seat right up front in the boat. The boats are large and hardly filled.
Musee D'Orsay
Eiffel Tower
The smallest house in Paris.
Pont des Art
Notre Dame

Vedettes du Pont Neuf Boat Tours does not offer lunch or dinner cruises like Bateaux-Mouches or Bateaux-Parisiens but you can bring on board snacks! I would strongly recommend that you consider a boat tour when you are in Paris as you will see some of the city's essential attractions in an hour. Economical, relaxing and romantic. You could get some snacks at the dock but they maybe priced steeply.
The snack bar at the docking station.

We were back on land and decided that it was time for dinner. We wondered around the 1st arrondissement in search of food but settled with an unusual choice. A Chinese restaurant called Traiteur Chez Zhang.
Photo of Rue de Rivoli
The crazy amount of traffic signs on Rue du Pont Neuf
It is definitely an interesting meal! We ordered a Menu Complet/Complete menu (8.80€/S$15.30) . The complete menu includes 1 starter which I chose "dim sum", mains which I chose fried rice, a choice of a meat such as Beef, Chicken, Duck, Pork, Fish or Shrimps and a drink or dessert. I opted for the Sweet and Sour pork. It was more sweet than sour but the meat was flavourful. The meal was satisfying as my family has not eaten rice for 4 days! (Asian woes) Here is a picture of my dinner. (:
Menu Complet (8.80€/S$15.30)

Traiteur Chez Zhang
33 rue Berger
75001, Paris, France
Tel: +33140284516 

After a long day, we took the metro back to our hotel. Here is the interior of the train. Be warned as the trains may smell like a sewage. For the older trains, you may have to open the doors by yourself! Cheap thrills.
Interior of a metro cart.
What you need to know:
- When you are travelling in groups. Consider buying a carnet, a package of 10 tickets. A carnet costs 13.70(18/05/14), much cheaper than buying single tickets which cost 1.70€ (18/05/14).
- Arrive early to secure a seat right up front in the boat.
- Book your boat tickets online to save $$$. The tickets are flexible as you can walk in whenever you feel like taking the boat. This is great as the ride is weather dependent.
- There are plenty of food options when you are in Paris. You could consider dining at Little Breizh which is near Pont Neuf for Crepes!

Click here to return to the London & Paris overall.

Here is an overview of Day 4 of my London & Paris trip in June 2013. (Best viewed using Google Chrome)
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About Unknown

Koo Haoming. Founder of The Fat Chemist. Currently an undergrad at the National University of Singapore with a burning passion for science! Inspired to start a blog after reading the book, "Napoleon's Buttons, How 17 Molecules Changed History". The book fills the gap between Chemistry and History. Adapting the style of the book, posts written by me highlight the chemistry in the food we eat.
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