Why pick spring for an easy family break in Paris this year

Last updated 16th March 2024

In case you missed it, the Paris Olympics is happening this summer, if you’d like to go in spring instead, here are 10 things to do in Paris with kids before the Olympic crowds hit.

Lay claim to Ladurée macarons before the Paris Olympics creates queues

Krispy Kreme had Parisians queueing round the block when it opened its doors in Les Halles for the first time last December. But they’re a long way from knocking the city’s most iconic patisserie off top perch. And yes, we know there are Ladurée shops worldwide, but Ladurée macarons just hit different in their home town, and Paris is undeniably that.

To get an eyeful of creativity, head to Ladurée at 75 Avenue de Champs Élysées to catch the sweetest window displays. And it’s not just macarons: Lala Ladurée, the chocolate Easter bunny is a bit of a spring thing in Paris. Also worth mentioning that Ladurée comes with big TikTok energy, so it’s definitely for teens. Although the really discerning should taste-test Pierre Hermé macarons on the Champs Élysées as well.

Book a family stay at Nuage on the Champs Élysées this spring

Venture out to Versailles to catch this spring’s musical fountains

It’s worth taking the train from Paris to the Palais de Versailles any time of year; the gardens even look hauntingly lovely in winter. However, as an added incentive this spring and summer, Versailles is upping its game with musical fountain displays several days a week and splashy evening spectacles at the weekend.

Download the Versailles treasure hunt app

The fountains go live on 30 March 2024 and if that’s not enough fun for kids, you can download the Rabbids@Versailles treasure hunt app to play in the gardens too. This is definitely one to catch in spring as Versailles is the venue for equestrian events during the Paris Olympics. Buy a Passport (reduced rate for children) and you get access to the Palais, the Trianon Estate and the musical gardens.

Book a family stay at Novotel Château de Versailles this spring


Le mur des je t’aime, Montmartre

The I Love You wall re-opens for romantic teens this spring

You really don’t need an excuse to explore Montmartre, especially in spring. But if you did, the re-opening of Le mur des je t’aime is  good one. It’s set to be TikTok ready again in late March and you’ll find it in Jehan Rictus Jardin in Montmartre.

A must for romantically inclined teens, the tiled wall contains 311 versions of the words I Love You in 620 different languages. So, not only charming and whimsical, it’s a learning experience too.

Look out for the puzzle at the heart of the wall

Take note of the seemingly random red splashes. The wall’s creators, artists Frédéric Baron and Claire Kito, designed them with intent: supposedly when put together in the correct order they form a large, scarlet heart.

Honestly, even no teens in tow shouldn’t put you off seeking this one out, before the Paris Olympic hordes descend.

Book a family stay at Hôtel des Arts Montmartre this spring

Do Disneyland Paris soon for family spring break offers

Disneyland Paris stops for nothing, not even the Paris Olympics. Although it does have some persuasive reasons for avoiding summer this year, including a family spring break offer.

New things to do at Disneyland Paris

A Million Splashes of Colour, launched on 10 February 2024, is the new daytime spectacle performed at Sleeping Beauty Castle. Although if you hang on until evening, there’s more newness in the shape of the Disney Electrical Sky Parade which involves a dazzling dance of up to 500 drones, again, above the second most famous palace in Paris.

And for newly magical sleeps, the recently reimagined Disneyland Hotel lets kids in on the fairy tale for real with interactive experiences, royal makeovers and even it’s own entrance to the park.

Book a family stay at Disneyland® Hotel this spring

The Rodin Museum invites your kids to hunt eggs this Easter

This year the oldest chocolatier in Paris, À La Mère de Famille, has teamed up with the Rodin Museum to bring you probably the most Parisian Easter egg hunt ever.

Families are invited to quest around the famous, statue-filled gardens from 2pm to 4pm on Wednesday 27 March 2024.

There’s more than chocolate to day at the museum

As well as the thrill of the chocolate chase, there’s a game trail in the sculpture garden too, along with duck fishing, story telling, flash tours, a sculpture workshop and an add-your-own-creative-touch mural.

A citywide sweet tooth means this will be popular, but you can book in advance from 13 March and three time slots are available. The hunt is for 3 to 12 year olds, though older kids are unlikely to be bored by the historic museum and gardens.

Book a family stay at Hôtel Bourgogne & Montana this spring


Model yachts, boating pond, Luxembourg Gardens

Grab a spot in pretty parks before the Paris Olympic crowds

Spring comes with a fairly good chance of warm, sunny weather in Paris, only perfect for exploring city gardens: one of the greatest free things to do with kids.

Start with the Jardin Nelson Mandela since it’s the newest and just a few minutes walk from Les Halles shopping centre in the heart of the city. It comes with some pretty steam-punk looking play equipment for 7 to 11 year olds, and the recently added 400m² space decorated by street artist, Romain Froquet, features a football pitch, basketball court and ping pong tables, which should keep older kids happy.

Come sail a boat in the Jardin du Luxembourg

Jardin du Luxembourg on the Left Bank is a bit more of a traditionalist and won’t win kids over with funky playground design. Instead it’s the place for hiring toy yachts to sail on the pond, catching puppet shows or a classic carousel,  saddling up for pony rides down the pretty tree lined avenues or just bagging an iconic green chair and a spot in the sun.

Book a family stay at Hotel Trianon Rive Gauche this spring

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Pompidou Centre, Paris

Two great Paris museums are all about your kids this spring

The Pompidou Centre couldn’t be more family focused at the moment from the Station 0.2 introduction to art and the art of self-expression for under twos (and parents) to Studio 13/16 where teens can explore anything from dance, music and film to fashion and design, in their own, sociable space.

Even a basic grasp of French will be enough for older kids to join in, so don’t let language be a barrier. Although if you prefer to go it alone, the Centre also has a new, free, family guide designed to help you discover the galleries in your own way through a range of fun, imaginative and thought provoking activities.

Don’t miss First Louvre for little art lovers

However, In English makes the new First Louvre experience easy for all families. Held every Saturday and Sunday at 11am, it’s a firmly child-friendly introduction to the world’s largest museum collection with an eye on its most famous exhibits, including the Mona Lisa, of course.

Book a family stay at Citadine Les Halles Paris this spring

It’s circus time for families in the Bois de Boulogne

Le Jardin d’Acclimatation in the Bois de Boulogne might be open all year round now, but spring really is the season to go ride those mechanical mice, take a turn on what’s arguably the city’s most extravagant carousel and just generally stroll about watching Parisians at play in the only Paris-proper amusement park.

The petting zoo is another cute springtime treat

If 42 attractions and the pretty setting don’t swing it for you, there’s an Egg Hunt on Easter Sunday and Monday this year. But that’s not as unmissable as the new Cirque de Jardin d’Acclimatation which hoists its big top on 6 April and stays around until 12 May.

The French have a long circus tradition so expect a bit of dazzle, plenty of clowns and juggling, as well as high-wire and aerial acts. They promise at least two shows a day and each lasts about 35 minutes. Although really young kids will be pleased to know the Jardin’s petting zoo is particularly cute at this time of year too.

Find apartments in Paris for family breaks this spring


Parc Asterix 35th Anniversary, Paris 2024

Come celebrate 35 years of Parc Asterix anytime in 2024

Kids just a shade too big for the quaint fun of the Bois de Boulogne, could be persuaded to go all Gallic by a day at Parc Asterix. This one often gets dismissed as a purely French obsession, but turns out to be a lot of fun and up for the sort of silly nonsense that’s universally appealing. Plus it features 50 rides and white-knuckle obsessives won’t be disappointed by the likes of Pégase Express.

Kids under 11 go free at Parc Asterix this spring

With all the hoopla about the Paris Olympics, you may not have realised Parc Asterix turns 35 this year. The up side of that is lots of great offers kicking off in late March, including free passes for kids under 11 and a new app which lets families create their own adventure or choose one of the Parc’s adventures: good if you’re only planning a few hours here.

Discover Pensacola and find your own, personal Way to Beach


Vintage toys, Saint-Ouen flea market, Paris

Take your kids on a spring tour of Les Puces de Saint-Ouen

Spring is one of the best times to visit Les Puces de Saint-Ouen in the north of Paris. It’s one of the biggest, oldest and most famous flea markets in the world and open every Saturday and Sunday. Mondays are market days too, but not the same vibe at all.

If you’re happy to just go and browse and watch how Parisians snare bargains, it’s the place for that. Although it’s also enormous, so even a slight sense of purpose could save you reaching saturation point in the first five minutes. Download the map (in the link above) and start at Paul Bert Market because it’s the coolest for teens, then head to Le Passage: the heartland of vintage clothes. Both these part of Les Puces score high on friendliness.

Find the perfect Paris flea market tour for teens

Alternatively, book a spot on one of the guided tours. There are plenty available and mostly bi-lingual. But the new Get Your Guide Les Puces de Saint-Ouen in-app audio tour created by a market trader, and in English, is a bit of a bargain. They also do a Paris Flea Market Insider’s Tour which gets great reviews, sells out fast and the guides are bi-lingual.

Up to you how you flea, but catch this one before summer crowds descend from the Paris Olympics. And it might be in the north of the city, but it’s just a few minutes’ walk from Porte de Clignancourt Métro station.

Book a family stay at Montmartre Residence this spring

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