Paris From Your Kid’s Perspective
Visiting France? Here are some of the ways to keep your children entertained.
School is almost over and you are probably all pumped up for the forthcoming vacation. Only traveling with kids is not always as smooth and glamorous as it is cut out to be…
If you are headed to the city of lights, right along some amazing wine tasting and enjoying the best patisseries, you need to schedule in some kids-friendly activities. Whereas there is no doubt in mind that you will LOVE Paris, I have prepared a handy list to make your little (and not so little) ones fall in love with the city.
Here are my best tips for digital-devices-free activities for happy expat kids in Paris:
Toddler - Friendly Cafes:
Le Poussette Café (pushchair café is an ideal place to bring your baby.
Not only is it a child-friendly cafe but it has a play-area, offers courses such as baby massage and has baby clothes for sale.
The practical info: Square Montholon, 6 rue Pierre Semard 75009, metro: Poissonnière.
Cafézoïde is the only café in Paris which is reserved exclusively for children from 0 to 16 years old (accompanied by a parent)! Every day, this unusual venue hosts games, shows, exhibitions, encounters, chats, outdoor games and parties.
The practical info: 92 bis Quai de Loire 75019, metro: Crimée ou Laumière
Cafe Grenadine offers home-made dishes for children and parents, a shop area, a toys corner, workshops, story hours and of course all the necessary equipment for your little ones.
The practical info: 161 avenue du Maine75014 , metro: Mouton-Duvernet
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La Cité des Sciences et de lIndustrie
This ultra-modern science museum has everything from space, to science work, videography and more. The Cité des Enfants runs workshops for younger children. See the website for details.
The practical info: La Villette, 30 av Corentin-Cariou, metro: Porte de la Villette
The children’s gallery at the Centre Pompidou is a great way to engage those six and above with contemporary art. Interactive workshops, painting and art creation.
The practical info: Place Georges-Pompidou 75004, metro Rambuteau
The Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature
A private museum of hunting and nature located in the 3-rd arrondissement. The museum houses a collection of weapons and stuffed animals.
The practical info: 62 rue des Archives, metro Rambuteau
Musée de la Poupée
The Paris Doll Museum is a lovely museum well suited to children. It has 300 French dolls from 1850 to today, displayed as part of lively Parisian scenes, art and culture.
The practical info: Impasse Berthaud 75003, metro: Rambuteau
Cite de la Musique
A wonderful museum that doesn’t get the attention it deserves. Great exhibits on instruments, composition, and the history of music. There are also workshops available.
The practical info: 221 Avenue Jean Jaurès 75019, metro: Port de Pantin.
Best outdoor amusement parks
Ok do I need to say more?! It is the most visited theme park in all of France and Europe with all of the favorite figures in one location, the perfect experience for kids all ages (and their parents!).
The practical info: Marne-la-Vallée, a new town located 32 km east of Paris (RER ride)
This children’ park was actually designed in the 19th century, and although it’s been updated with lots of cool rides and play equipment there’s still an air of old Paris about the place.
The practical info: Bois de Boulogne 75116, metro: les Sablons.
A cross between a botanical garden and an amusement park, where jazz concerts are held on weekends in summer.
The practical info: 1 Route de la Pyramide 75012, metro: Château de Vincennes.
Jardin des Plantes
The Jardin des Plantes is the main botanical garden in France.
It is one of seven departments of the Muséum national d'histoire naturelle.
It contains more than 10,000 species and includes tropical greenhouses and rose, winter and Alpine gardens – is an enchanting place.
The practical info: 57 Rue Cuvier 75005, metro: Jussieu or Gare d'Austerlitz.
Bois de Vincennes
The largest public park in the city, there are boating lakes, a Buddhist temple, a racetrack, restaurants, a baseball field and a small farm.
The practical info: metro: Château de Vincennes
For rainy days:
This is one of the most special places in Paris. It is part art installation, part interactive museum.
The installations are made to play in and “experience” and are perfect for both children and adults.
The practical info: 5 Rue Curial 75019, metro: Le Centquatre
The Aquarium de Paris
offers a restrained but entertaining array of fishes and other marine life, just across from the Eiffel Tower in the Palais Chaillot.
The practical info: 5 Avenue Albert de Mun 75016, metro: Trocadero
Grande Galerie de l'Évolution
More than 7000 preserved animal specimens over 4 floors, each presenting a different theme.
The practical info: 36 Rue Geoffroy-Saint-Hilaire 75005 , metro: Place Monge
The Passages of Paris
Paris has numerous passages or covered malls dating from the 18th and 19th centuries.
These days they house interesting shops and restaurants. Some recommendations: Galerie Vivienne the Passage du Grand Cerf in rue Saint Denis .
The practical info: metro Les Halles
SEE ALSO: Why students and expats are the same
The Cream of the Crop
Chocolate and Pastry Tasting Tour
Taste 3 pastries, 5 chocolates, and several sorts of bread in the shops you visit on the tour in the upscale neighborhood of Saint-Germain-des-Prés is a premier fashion district in Paris.
The practical info: 19 rue de Sèvres75006, metro: Sèvres - Babylone
Paris’ most famous Church is an amazing sight to behold any time of day, but it is truly special late at night.
The basilica is lit, and the steps leading to it are choc-a-bloc with revellers, especially in the summer.
The practical info: 35 Rue du Chevalier de la Barre, 75018 , metro: Abbessess
There’s nothing like enjoying a nice summer picnic in one of the big green parks of the city.
Their company provides you with quality meats, cheeses, breads and wines, make delicious fresh salads and desserts and provide you with cutlery, plates, glasses and even a blanket to sit on (which is yours to keep) for a perfect picnic in the city of love.
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About the Author
Rita Golstein-Galperin is a Career Makeover Strategist® for expat women and the founder of Expat Renaissance. A serial expat from childhood, she is now a multicultural mom in Paris and a passionate lover of all chocolate:) She is also an author, entrepreneur, public speaker and a career and business coach for expats, striving to help women around the world redefine and reinvent their success abroad. Catch upo with Rita on Follow me at Expat Renaissance.