A dream came true for the Travel Team recently, when we had the chance to stay on a houseboat on the Seine, in Paris, near the heart of the city.
We rented the houseboat through Tripadvisor and were impressed by the easiness of booking, paying and making arrangements through Tripadvisor.
The houseboat nested with a group of other houseboats near the Gare d’Austerlitz, just beside the bridge Pont d’Austerlitz. The good boat Chalik was going to be our home for the next 4 days.
At first, it required a bit of getting used to walk on a boat that rocked – most of the times it didn’t move much, but when a tourist boat or freight boat came by, the boat was merrily bobbing as it served as wave breaker for the other boats further to the harbour.
After a few days, however, we got so used to the rocking, that the firm ground started to feel wobbly instead!
In a houseboat you are in a confined space, and that can be both cosy or crazy, depending on
- The number of guests on the boat and
- Your state of mind
When you can’t change 1, you have to change 2!
The boat was in great condition and we didn’t suffer any inconveniences during our stay. Instead, it was like having a private flat, where you could kick back and enjoy a glass of wine, make dinner or enjoy breakfast by yourselves – but a flat by the waterfront, with the opportunity to sit at the outside terrace and enjoy the view of the Seine – and feel like a true Parisienne, when the tourist boats came sailing by!
When you dare to venture past your normal habits and try something out of the ordinary, you get the extraordinary adventure! And remember – speaking a bit of the indigenous language goes a long way in making contact with the locals and ensure a memorable experience.
And you don’t have to be in Paris – the extraordinary can begin whenever and wherever you want it!