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Paris with four children (3,6,8,10)!

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posts: 24
Paris with four children (3,6,8,10)!

My husband and I and our four children are visiting Paris (first time, from Melbourne) in late September, and there is so much I want to see as I have always dreamed of going! Obviously we will need to keep our itinerary simple for the kids, but I just want suggestions of absolutely must see or do with the kids.

My plan is to choose one "attraction" each day and then spend time around that area, preferably with some playtime in each day.

We are staying on blvd st.germain btwn st.germain and Latin quarter, so a lot is walking distance.

Any suggestions for good eating, markets, playgrounds, attractions for kids, preferably nowhere super super busy. And where to go if we get a lot of wet weather??

Thanks in advance!,

Bellflower...
posts: 2,624
reviews: 15
11. Re: Paris with four children (3,6,8,10)!

Bonjour, DanaeCosta,

I agree with HappyGoin about the bus. The following website will help you plan the routes:

ratp.fr/itineraires/en/ratp/recherche-avancee

MrsJAS

Yucaipa, California
posts: 3,379
reviews: 6
12. Re: Paris with four children (3,6,8,10)!

A few more ideas/tips for you:

Metro/RER/bus is free for children 3 and under, half fare for children 9 and under

Major museums--Pick up postcards at the gift shop first and then "scavenger hunt" for the real paintings/artwork.

Jardin d'Acclimatation—great for kids, north end of Bois de Boulogne. Metro: Porte Maillot then street train by L'Orée du Bois restaurant, or Sablon metro then a 5-minute walk. Train rides, magical river (boat rides), farm animals, play areas, classes in candy making, painting, etc., old style carnival rides and hall of mirrors, small zoo, a marionette show, water park for hot summer days, and countless other attractions. “A step back in time”. Entrance is about 3€

Tuilleries playground--behind the Jeu de Paume there are trampolines for the kids

Science Museum—Sections for different ages. Watch a film at the Geode (3D). The parc at the museum is also good for a run around in after, with some stuff for younger kids to play on.

Playground at the opposite end of Champ du Mars from the Eiffel—pony rides, pedal cars, etc.

Arts and Metiers Museum if they like machines

The Air museum--out of town but easy to get to and a very good museum if they like planes.

The Magic museum--a small museum but has a really good magic show, some fun exhibits, and a shop where you can buy magic tricks for even very young kids.

Tethered hot air balloon in Andre Citroen Parc-- also a nice park for kids to run around in

Musée de la Poupée—Impasse Berthaud off rue Beaubourg in the 3rd, Metro: Rambuteau; Open Tues-Sat, 10-5pm

Natural History museum--in the Jardin des Plantes (closed Tuesday) 5€ Open 10-6pm; Paleontology hall (animal bones) next door. Alpine garden in the Botanical Gardens (estab. 1626)--it's very lush with winding paths and is sort of hidden; there's a small zoo in the garden too, that was started with animals from the royal managerie at Versailles. There is a mineralogy museum here, also, if anyone is into rocks.

Edited: 12:24 pm, July 13, 2013
Mill Valley...
posts: 2,519
reviews: 10
13. Re: Paris with four children (3,6,8,10)!

Wow, someone (^) really knows how to entertain children! That is quite a list, Annette. Even I'M tempted on some of them, ok, MOST of them! :-))

Los Angeles
Destination Expert
for Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
posts: 10,260
reviews: 87
14. Re: Paris with four children (3,6,8,10)!

Great list, Annette. The Grand Gallery of Evolution is *amazing* and adults like it too. The kids we saw there were enjoying it thoroughly and I can't think of another museum like it on the planet. It's not a huge long endeavor to see it either, and fairly close by bus to where you are staying. The nearby outdoor sculpture garden (along the Seine) is a fun way to walk back.

If you had enough time to go to Chantilly, the horse/pony show at around 2pm in the afternoon is just amazing for kids and it was mostly kids there, and I can't remember the last time I heard so much genuine delight and laughter (it's in French, but it's entirely self-explanatory and the show is funny and amazing, you can "meet the cast" - the equine cast, anyway - before or after the show in the gigantic and amazing stable there). Chantilly is also the home of a pretty cool set of gardens and an art collection that would appeal more to adults (but kids like palaces).

The Cluny museum is a genuine castle and appeals to kids at the level of being a fairy tale come alive. There are lots of remaining late medieval/early Renaissance towers around Paris - and you're staying near some of the best of them. Even if you didn't go in the Cluny (but it's fun to go up the winding staircase and through the museum and the gift shop is *very* fun for kids), you could still see it from the outside.

Kids might enjoy Conciergerie (the displays are a bit in need of a makeover, but it's the real deal - where Marie Antoinette spent her last night), because again, it's a big medieval building.

The Louvre itself can be kid friendly (especially, again, the outside - but also elements of the inside are so awe-inspiring, like Gallerie Apollon and the area where the big format paintings are, right behind Mona Lisa).

It's a lot of walking for kids, though. Paris touring is a lot of walking for anyone. The bus system is far more self-explanatory and easy than it may first appear (every bus stop has a map of that particular line - the map is not oriented to the four directions, but always appears horizontally with a clear marker of exactly where you are at; all you have to do is figure out which side of the street you should be on, which becomes pretty clear from studying the bus map briefly; then they usually have a display saying how long till the next bus - and it's never long, but it sure helps keep people patient).

You can enter the bus from the middle if you have a stroller.

posts: 24
15. Re: Paris with four children (3,6,8,10)!

Thanks, yes I'm starting to realise the bus is the way to go :)

posts: 24
16. Re: Paris with four children (3,6,8,10)!

LOve the pastry idea, love the idea of buying postcards and then hunting for the paintings or monuments though the museums, love the sound of so many of the parks and their highlights...I'm blown away by your detailed responses...thanks so much!!!

Edited: 7:53 am, July 14, 2013
Clarksville TN
posts: 101
reviews: 8
17. Re: Paris with four children (3,6,8,10)!

If you think they would enjoy an old castle, complete with a (dry) moat around it, try the Chateau de Vincennes.

Singapore, Singapore
posts: 559
reviews: 17
18. Re: Paris with four children (3,6,8,10)!

I just wanted to say I'm planning a trip next June with my then 5, 11 And 12 year old and definitely saving this thread! Possible to share which apartment you will be at? I'm starting to realise it's not easy finding hotels that take 5 in Europe!

Paris, France
posts: 40
19. Re: Paris with four children (3,6,8,10)!

Nearby Louvre, at Jardin des Tuilleries (must see), there is funfair now, I think it's a nice place for kids!

Edited: 9:06 am, July 14, 2013
Austin, Texas
posts: 94
reviews: 12
20. Re: Paris with four children (3,6,8,10)!

We visited this summer with kids ages 13, 9 and 6. We had such a wonderful time! A couple of the highlights for them were...

The playground at Luxembourg Gardens

Berthillon every night

Staying up to watch the Eiffel Tower light up - viewed from the Trocadero

Fat Tire bike tour of Versailles (6 year old was on a tandem bike with my husband.)

They really enjoyed just taking everything in. It was such a wonderful experience. We're so glad that we did it!

They also LOVED our apartment but not sure if you could have 4 kids in it.