I am just back from Paris and glad to finally be able to answer a question instead of only asking! My first recommendation would be to do the boat cruise. Not sure how long you are there, but there is so much walking to be done. That is an opportunity to see alot while sitting and to get a feel for how it is all laid out. We walked about 10 hours a day for 4 days. We did the cruise on Vendette Pont Neuf, as recommended by TA folks. It was great. We went at 9:30pm the first day we arrived and saw the Tower light up, lasers and twinkling! Breathtaking! As you cruise down the river people sitting on the banks drinking wine and eating picnic suppers all cheer and wave. So much fun! That all being said, if you really want to walk it, stroll along the left bank. I think you can go the whole way up to Quai Branley. I have seen another recommendation to go up rue Saint Dominique. Either way - enjoy!
Thanks, kerouac2, abwpg & wrappido!
You'll see the Eiffel Tower from any of the bridges over the river starting with the Pont Neuf and heading west towards the tower. You can also watch from these bridges at night when the tower is lit up (once every hour for 5-10 minutes from sunset to either midnight or 1:00AM). You can also see it well from the Place de la Concorde.
Thanks French_Mystique. I'll check those routes.
I looked up directions on Google Maps, and it shows it is 2.8 miles from the Eiffel Tower to Notre Dame, and it takes 55 minutes by foot. Now the route given is via main streets, so you would not get the views you want by walking along the Seine, but it should not be much farther walking along the quais.
Problem is, this is Paris. I guarantee it will take you longer to make the journey, as you simply MUST stop so often to see the wondrous things that you will encounter; from street musicians to chocolate shop windows.
Walking along the quai / riverside of SEine is ok for a short distance, but you will mostly see the boats passing. You are in a large hole! Walk along the left bank and you get the best feel of the city. Late at night, after 1am most of street lights go out and Paris is a bit scary around the Eiffel tower especially. I do a lot of night photography and was surprised how fast the time goes and suddenly the streets are dark and a long walk is necessary unless you know a taxi stand nearby. You cannot hail a cab in PAris and there is no metro service after midnight!