Some of our favourite things to do in Paris with our children

Last updated 23rd March 2024

Centre Pompidou, Paris

Centre Pompidou: a gallery that’s practically made for kids

The street performers, caricaturists and mime artists outside the Centre Pompidou will have your children hooked before they step inside.

Although once through its doors, the art gallery is great for all the family. The ground floor houses a centre dedicated solely to children, to help them understand exhibits running through the rest of the building.

Good to know: there are workshops designed for 2-12 year-olds as well as a studio for teens.

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Musée de l’Armée: the must-see museum for older kids

Although originally a hospital for disabled soldiers set up by Louis XIV, Les Invalides now houses a military museum, as well as the tomb of Napoleon. The collection of weapons, armour and artillery models span seven spaces, which are divided chronologically or in themes, so you can pick out favourites. The audio guide’s interactive trails are designed specifically for children and will help bring the museum to life. Perfect for kids that love history!

Good to know: there’s a café on site for snacks and a lift for buggy access.

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Eiffel Tower: the most iconic of all Paris icons

To add to the fun for children visiting the Eiffel Tower, a route around the monument has been created by a character called Gus. Follow his yellow footprints to discover clues, which will help answer questions in an activity booklet and teach them about the building. The best way to get there is either by Metro, on the Batobus, which links up all the major tourist attractions by boat.

Good to know: the Tower does a dazzling, after dark light show, once an hour until midnight, every night, and it’s free!

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Musée D’Orsay: an amazing introduction to art for children

Musée d’Orsay, right in the centre of Paris on the right bank of the Seine, has walls full of famous impressionist paintings and is a great introduction to art for children. Aside from what’s on the walls, there is plenty in this spectacular former train station to capture a child’s imagination, from the striking architecture to the kid’s bookshop.

Good to know: buggies are allowed through the disabled entrance, which also has a shorter queue, and there are ramps all over the museum.

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Disneyland Paris: a break from all the art and history

Forget ancient architecture, world-class museums, Michelin-starred food, what the kids really want from a visit to Paris is life-sized cartoon characters, giant pink castles and an endless stream of rides.

So to Disneyland Paris it is. Split over five magical lands the theme park really is every child’s dream, and as a parent you’ll get serious cool points.

Good to know: seven on-site hotels include the fantastical Disney Hotel, with themed bedrooms and breakfast with Mickey.

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Cité des Enfants: a head start in science for younger kids

Based in the Science Museum just outside the centre of Paris at La Villette, the Cité des Enfants is designed to introduce children to science in a fun way. It’s split into two age categories, 2-7 and 5-12 year-olds. However, both are made up of interactive exhibitions, divided into themes such as the body, water games, the garden and the factory.

Good to know: the museum is so popular it has time slots, you’ve 90 minutes to explore and tickets must be booked online.

See our recommended family hotels in La Villette

Jardin d’Acclimatation: the heritage alternative to Disneyland Paris

Even the theme parks in Paris are chic, as proven by this 152-year old amusement park in the north of the Bois de Boulogne, which will transport you back in time. Steam trains, magic mirrors, dodgems and flying swings create a vintage carnival feel in the park. There are plenty of cafés to refuel at, too.

Good to know: La Prévention Routière is a miniature road network where kids drive cars, following street signs and stopping at lights.

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Jardin des Plantes: one of the loveliest places in Paris

Paris botanical gardens are lovely to walk around or play in at any time of year. They also house The Galerie de l’Evolution (the city’s natural history museum) and the Menagerie, a little zoo that has been around since the mid-19th century and hasn’t changed since. Full of charm, it has 1,800 species, which include orang-utans, big cats and nearly 400 birds.

Good to know: the gardens are free and open year round.

See our recommended family hotels near Jardin des Plantes

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