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25 Things To Do on a Paris Family Vacation Besides the Eiffel Tower

25 Things To Do on a Paris Family Vacation Besides the Eiffel Tower

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Are you planning a trip to Paris with kids? Keep scrolling for a list of the best things to do on a Paris family vacation that your whole family will love!
This list of the best things to do on a Paris family vacation was written by family travel expert Marcie Cheung and contains affiliate links which means if you purchase something from one of my affiliate links, I may earn a small commission that goes back into maintaining this blog.

Planning a family vacation in Paris and looking for ideas on what to do in Paris with kids?

You’re in luck! Paris is a fantastic place to travel with kids of all ages. We’ve visited Paris multiple times and it’s so kid friendly!

If that surprises you, remember that Paris is a major capital city and a bucket-list destination for many. It’s in the best interest of museums, parks, and other attractions to be as welcoming as possible for those traveling to Paris with kids.

There are plenty of things to do on a Paris family vacation whether you’re traveling in summer or winter, with babies or teenagers.

This guide will give you the lowdown on which Paris attractions with kids are best as well as the best family activities in Paris so you can all enjoy an unforgettable, fun family trip to Paris!

Don’t have time to read a bunch of Paris blog posts and reviews? Here are some of our top picks for visiting Paris with kids.

Popular Paris Tours/Activities

Kid-Friendly Paris Hotels

25 Perfect Things To Do on a Paris Family Vacation

The Arc de Triomphe

Built by Napoleon at the beginning of the 19th century to commemorate his achievements, the Arc de Triomphe is one of the top Paris attractions.

The rooftop observation deck offers beautiful views across the Champs-Élysées and the Eiffel Tower.

Image of a family taking a selfie from the top of the Arc de Triomphe
This is the ultimate selfie spot on the observation area at the Arc de Triomphe. Photo credit: Darren Cheung

When traveling on a Paris family trip, visiting the Arc de Triomphe is probably a better experience for your kids than the Eiffel Tower.

Entry is free for children under 18. The Arc de Triomphe is usually less crowded and has less security (though you should still expect it to be busy!) so it’s less overwhelming for younger kids.

I recommend buying your rooftop tickets ahead of time. That’s what we always to do avoid a long wait. Check the latest rates and availability.

Ménagerie du Jardin des Plantes

Jardin des Plantes is a huge park on the south bank of the Seine next to Sorbonne University. The Ménagerie is a beautiful 18th-century zoo and many of the animals are housed in the original buildings.

Jardin des Plantes in Paris.
Jardin des Plantes in Paris.

They have lots of exotic animals such as red pandas, tortoises, flamingos, and kangaroos. 

One of the best reasons why it’s one of the best things to do in Paris for children is because it’s in such a convenient location in the center of the capital.

Jardin des Plantes also has a maze and a botanical garden.

Angelina Tea Room

You cannot visit Paris with kids and not let them indulge in croissants, pain au chocolat, crêpes, and other sweet treats.

Eating French pastries is such a vital cultural experience on any Paris family trip!

One of the best cafés to enjoy sweet treats is Angelina’s Tea Room. With opulent turn-of-the-century decor, it’s a Paris institution with several sites across the city.

Yes, it’s on the pricey side, but a round of hot chocolate and a pastry each shouldn’t blow your budget.

Jardin du Luxembourg

One of many exceptional parks in Paris, the Jardin du Luxembourg is a 17th-century formal garden with lots of lawns to enjoy a picnic or watch the fountains. It’s fun for the entire family.

Image of a boy pushing a toy boat in Paris
I highly recommend renting the toy boats! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

My kids LOVE to rent toy boats to push in the little pond in Luxembourg Gardens. They also really like playing at the playground. It’s a great place to meet new friends from around the world.

There’s also a marionette theater in the park which is one of the most unique things to do in Paris with kids. Check the performance schedule before you visit.

Disneyland Paris

Just an easy 40-minute train ride out of Paris’s historic center is Disneyland Paris, which is one of the top things to do on a Paris family vacation for obvious reasons! 

Find out the best things to do at Disneyland Paris. Image of a mom and two boys in front of the 30th anniversary sign at Disneyland Paris
We celebrated the 30th anniversary of Disneyland Paris (formerly Euro Disney)! Photo credit: Darren Cheung

If you’ve already visited a Disney park or are planning a separate vacation then you can skip it. It’s pretty similar to Disneyland in California.

But if you’re not, planning a Disneyland Paris family trip is a great way to inject some excitement and variety in the middle of your vacation.

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    Parc des Buttes-Chaumont

    On the site of a former quarry, Parc des Buttes-Chaumont has one of the best playgrounds Paris with bridges, ponds, trails, tall trees, and waterfalls. 

    Sibyl temple and lake in Buttes-Chaumont Park, Paris, France
    Buttes-Chaumont Park is a gorgeous place just outside the city.

    It’s a little out of central Paris but ideal if you’re staying nearby.

    Some other great parks in Paris are Parc Monceau, Parc Montsouris, Parc du Champ de Mars, and Parc de la Villette. 

    Picnic at the Eiffel Tower

    While we’ve gone to the top of the Eiffel Tower with kids, it can be a crowded/chaotic experience for little ones.

    Image of a green lawn in front of the Eiffel Tower
    There are plenty of places to enjoy a picnic near the Eiffel Tower.

    Climbing the Eiffel Tower might not be one of the best things to do with kids in Paris, but you definitely need to see it!

    There’s a huge lawn underneath the iconic 19th-century landmark so pack a picnic to enjoy underneath the tower instead.

    Les Catacombes de Paris

    Looking for things to do in Paris for kids who are a little older? They might find the Catacombs of Paris super interesting.

    catacombs of Paris. Burial of millions of people in underground labyrinths.
    Millions of people are buried in the Paris Catacombs.

    Catacombs are usually religious burial chambers with the skulls and bones of the deceased used as decoration. There are over six million people buried in these chambers and children under 18 have free entry.

    The most popular tickets for families is this skip-the-line attraction tickets with an audio tour. But if you’re really interested in the Catacombs, you might want to splurge for this VIP tour that goes into restricted areas.

    Book a Family Photo Shoot

    Whenever we travel, we almost always book a family photo shoot with Flytographer. They are super easy, affordable, AND guarantee that I’ll be in some photos. You can get $25 off if you book through this link or use the code HAWAIITRAVEL.

    Musée de la Magie

    The Museum of Magic is an obscure exhibit in Saint Paul village all about the history of illusionists in Paris from the 1700s until the present. 

    It’s one of the best Paris museums for kids because you can watch actual magic shows here too. Check the latest rates for skip-the-line tickets.

    Vincennes Woods

    Encompassing almost the entire 12th Arrondissement, Vincennes Woods is a 995-hectare park that is home to Paris Zoological Park, a flower garden, a tropical garden, and so much more.

    Vincennes, the temple of love and artificial grotto on the Daumesnil lake, in the public park
    There is so much to explore at Bois de Vincennes.

    This is one of the best things to do in Paris with toddlers that just want to walk everywhere as there is just so much to pique their curiosity here.

    Jardin d’Acclimatation

    Founded by Napoleon III in the late 19th century, Jardin d’Acclimatation is a beloved amusement park in Bois de Boulogne and one of the best playgrounds in Paris.

    It’s one of the best Paris attractions for families as there are rides and carousels for kids (and kids at heart) of all ages. Check the latest rates for a 1-day ticket.

    Marché aux Fleurs et Oiseaux

    While not an obvious thing to do in Paris with family, the flowers and birds market near the Notre Dome is one of the best things to do in Paris with a baby or very young kids. 

    There are so many nick-nacks, bright colors, and chirping birds in this place. Strolling through the stalls is all the sensory entertainment your baby wants.

    Aquarium de Paris

    One of the best Paris indoor activities to visit on a rainy day is the Aquarium de Paris. It’s located in Jardins du Trocadéro opposite the Eiffel Tower so it’s in a super convenient spot.

    Shark tunnels, a movie theater, and touch-friendly tropical fish pools are just some of the highlights of this high-tech aquarium. Check the latest admission rates.

    Musée du Louvre

    With its sprawling galleries and large crowds, the Louvre Museum isn’t the best place to visit with super young kids. But if you want to visit with older kids and are looking for ways to keep them engaged, follow one of the trails.

    The Louvre, or the Louvre Museum, is the worlds largest art museum and a historic monument in Paris, France. A central landmark of the city, it is located on the Right Bank of the Seine in the citys 1st arrondissement.
    It’s free to walk around the Louvre courtyard but you’ll need to tickets to explore inside.

    There is a trail just for the masterpieces, one for Ancient Egyptian works, and even a trail that follows artwork featured in Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s music video!

    If you want to walk through it on your own to snap a selfie with the Mona Lisa, I suggest getting this timed entrance ticket. Otherwise, I suggest booking this kid-friendly Louvre tour that will keep kids engaged with activities.

    Paris Plages on the River Seine

    If you’re planning your Paris family vacation in summer, you have to check out the Paris Plages on the banks of the River Seine near the Pont au Change.

    Image of a Paris beach along the Seine
    Spend a day soaking in the sunshine at a beach along the River Seine.

    This is an artificial beach where you can sit under a beach umbrella and build sandcastles so it’s a great thing to do in Paris for kids. Who needs a coastline?!

    Musée en Herbe

    While many museums in Paris are child-friendly, few are specifically for kids except Musée en Herbe.

    This children’s art museum has colorful displays, child-friendly tours, and interactive exhibits where children can make art themselves. It’s worth looking into for your next trip to Paris with kids.

    La Promenade Plantée

    This park is actually a disused railway line turned into a green walkway. If you’re familiar with the High Line in New York City, it’s the same thing. 

    It makes the list of things to do in Paris with family because it’s a more exciting and safer way to walk from A to B than the sidewalks. The wooden path is stroller-friendly, there are tons of benches, and you don’t need to worry about traffic.

    Funiculaire de Montmartre

    Exploring Paris can be tiring for adults, let alone kids. Finding ways to conserve their energy is easier said than done.

    Montmartre cable car and down stairs Paris france
    My kids thought this was a unique ride!

    However, if you want to visit the Basilica of Sacré-Cœur in Montmartre, save your little ones from having to walk up the hills by taking the funicular instead. It’s a fun way of climbing the hills in Paris for children and adults alike.

    L’Atelier des Lumières

    This is an art gallery with a difference. L’Atelier des Lumières uses classic artworks in their immersive light projection, video, and musical experience. 

    It’s a fun sensory experience plus you won’t have to worry about your kids touching the artwork because it’s just a projection!

    Centre Pompidou

    Home to France’s National Modern Art Gallery, Centre Pompidou has a gallery specifically aimed at kids and even a studio where kids can create their own artwork.

    Fish-eye view of The Pompidou cultural center in Paris, France
    The Centre Pompidou is fun on the outside AND the inside!

    It’s a quirky-looking building with wide, wooden walkways which are very stroller-friendly. Check the latest admission rates.

    Cirque d’Hiver Bouglione

    Looking for places to take your family in Paris during the winter months? This circus first opened in 1852 and is open every year from October to March.

    It’s a quintessential circus experience with a Big Top tent, acrobatics, music, and more. Plus, it adds a little whimsy to a Paris vacation in winter.

    Seine River Cruise

    Walking tours and food tours aren’t a fun way to see the city with little ones, but sailing down the river Seine on a boat cruise is something the whole family can enjoy.

    The Eiffel Tower and seine river in Paris, France
    Doing a Seine River cruise is a great way to take a break from walking around Paris.

    Some great boat companies include Bateaux-Mouches and Bateaux Parisiens or you could take the hop-on, hop-off Batobus.

    Vedettes de Paris, in particular, has hour-long tours specifically for young families.

    Le Bassin de la Villette

    This canal turns into three public swimming pools every year from June to September. Paris can get super humid during August so if your family is feeling too hot to explore, head here to cool off instead.

    Palais de la Découverte

    One of the best science museums in Paris, this interactive museum is housed in a beautiful, ornate building overlooking the Seine. It’s perfect for older kids and there’s so much to see.

    Family Portraits at Place du Tertre

    Some might say they’re tacky, and some might say they’re a scam, but where better to get a family portrait drawn by a real artist than on the streets of Paris?

    painters put their pictures on the place du tertre in paris, france.
    Having a custom portrait is a unique Paris souvenir!

    Head to Place du Terte in Montmartre where you’ll find dozens of street artists attempting to make a living from their craft. You’ll be able to hang up your new portrait and always remember your incredible trip to Paris.

    Things To Do on a Paris Family Vacation FAQs

    Is Paris a Family-Friendly Vacation?

    Yes! Paris is definitely a family-friendly vacation. 

    There are lots of things to do in Paris with kids including tons of parks, cute cafés, kid-friendly museum exhibits, and fun activities that the whole family will enjoy.

    Paris is a sprawling city with many neighborhoods so you will need to use public transport at some point. Some of the tourist attractions can get quite crowded too.

    Most of the museums and attractions are at least partially accessible, but there might be some floors or towers that are off-limits for strollers. If you have babies or very young toddlers, carriers are your friend. 

    Family vacations in Paris might require a little more forward planning, but that’s the case with every vacation if you have kids!

    How many days do you need in Paris with kids?

    If you’re visiting Paris for the first time, you’ll want at least 5 days. That will give you time to climb the Eiffel Tower, see Notre Dame de Paris, do the toy boats at Jardin du Luxembourg, and more on your Paris itinerary.

    You can also plan a day trip to Disneyland Paris and Walt Disney Studios. It makes for a dream trip to Paris with kids!

    What is the best way for a family to get around Paris?

    If you’re traveling into Paris with family from any of the Paris airports, book a transfer. 

    Shuttles cost around €60 one-way (you can book shared ones to lower the price) but it’s worth it if you have a large family, very young kids, and/or a lot of luggage!

    Navigating the metro system in Paris with family is much easier than you’d think and is the most affordable and best way for a family to get around Paris.

    Children under four can travel on any public transport network (bus, train, tram, or metro) for free and children age four to nine pay a half fare. 

    Currently, 90% of metro stations have motorized, wide-access ticket gates for wheelchairs and strollers. Many of the stations have elevators, but not all. If you’re bringing a stroller, prepare to carry it up and down steps on some occasions. 

    When will Notre Dame Cathedral re-open?

    The Notre Dame Cathedral is expected to reopen in late 2024, five years after the fire that destroyed its iconic spire and roof.

    The $865 million reconstruction project was launched in April 2019, but progressed in spurts due to the COVID-19 lockdown, a flurry of archaeological finds below the church’s foundation, and a controversial modernization plan.

    What area in Paris is best for families?

    There are three areas in Paris that are best for families: Saint Germain in the 6th Arrondissement, Rue Cler in the 7th Arrondissement, and Marais in the 3rd Arrondissement.

    All three neighborhoods are central which means you won’t have to travel far to see the main attractions.

    Saint Germain is close to lots of shops and restaurants. Rue Cler is quieter and has a village vibe so you won’t have to worry about any wild parties outside your accommodation. Marais used to be the Jewish Quarter and is a little more upmarket and family-friendly.

    Is there any kid-friendly French cuisine?

    Yes, there are many kid-friendly French dishes. My kids love crepes, macarons, and creme brulee as treats. They also enjoy Quiche Lorraine and ordering “frites” aka French fries!

    Are there any theme parks in Paris for kids?

    Yes, there are several theme parks in Paris including Disneyland Park, Parc Astérix, Jardin d’Acclimatation, France Miniature, and Aquaboulevard.

    Things To Do on a Paris Family Vacation Wrap Up

    With countless parks, playgrounds, amusement rides, and cool museums for kids in Paris, planning what to do with kids in Paris couldn’t be easier.

    It helps that many top Paris attractions cater to families too.

    You can enjoy many of the same cafés, famous landmarks, and art museums in Paris with children that you would visit on a solo or couples trip.

    Whether you’re traveling with kids in Paris on a short city break or part of an epic European adventure, there are endless things to do in Paris with kids so you can have a fun Paris family vacation.

    Looking for more tips for visiting Paris with kids? Check out my top Paris planning tips, best day trips from Paris by train, Paris vs London, Paris Instagram spots, coolest Paris hidden gems, whether it’s worth visiting Versailles with kids, things to do in Paris with teens, how to take cute Paris family photos, my kid-friendly Paris itinerary, tips for visiting Paris with kids, the best kid-friendly Paris tours, Europe travel tips, 2 day Paris itinerary, and the best things to do in Paris at night!

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