Paris is the perfect place to visit with young kids. From its iconic landmarks like the Eiffel Tower and Louvre Museum to its charming cobblestone streets and beautiful gardens. There’s so much to see and do in the French capital, and it really is an ideal city for a family trip. I just returned from a magical 4 days in Paris with my 5 (and-a-half – I’d get in trouble if I left that out) year-old. We had the most wonderful trip, and I am now convinced that traveling to cities with kids is the way to go. I am going to share everything we did, our favorite family-friendly adventures, and how we got around. Here’s my guide to Paris with kids. 

 

A Guide to Paris with Kids: The Best Things to See and Do

 

This was my first trip to Paris with a young child. I had a pretty good idea of some of the things I wanted to see and do, but no idea where my not-so-adventurous eater would eat. Or how to plan out our days, and what activities to do together. So I turned to Zoe of The Petit Guide to help me plan out what to see and do. I gave her my rough itinerary, and she made a few tweaks, and gave me some great tips for navigating the city with a young child. 

Our trip was a little different since we planned the entire thing around the ERAS tour. It was Margot’s dream to see Taylor Swift in concert, and the tickets I purchased were 7x less than they would be in the states. So we went to Paris, and it was a dream trip. But a very late concert meant sleeping in on our second day knowing we would be up until midnight, and sleeping in on day 3 after being at the concert. So the next time we go, I want to bring the whole family and stay for at least a week. 

 

 

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Planning Your Trip to Paris

Choose the right place to stay: Opt for family-friendly hotels or apartments located in central areas close to public transportation and attractions. We stayed at Maison Delano in the 8th arrondissement, and it was a great location with kids. It’s very walkable and only 10 minute walk to the Tuileries. I loved our hotel but would also stay in the 6th near Luxembourg since we had so much fun there. 

Planning your trip: I would recommend a call with Zoe of The Petit Guide to map out what to do each day, along with ideal activities for your kids depending on their ages and interests. I found this especially helpful when it came to choosing kid-friendly places to eat. 

Weather considerations: We traveled in early-mid May. Our first day was a little cooler, but we had warm, sunny days the rest of the trip. The week prior to our trip was chilly and rainy, and I’ve experienced cold, rainy weather in June in Paris. I would always pack a travel umbrella, shoes that you can wear in the rain, and of course, layers. 

Language: French is the primary language spoken in Paris, but I found that many locals also speak English. I would recommend learning a few key phrases with your kids, and have them experience using them in Paris. My daughter said “bonjour,” “merci,” etc. 

Book a Paris photographer: We booked a photo shoot with Lindsey of Pictours Paris and it was the best experience! I really wanted photos of us together beyond what I could get with an iPhone and tripod, and I will treasure these photos forever. She made it fun – we went to the Tuileries, rode the carousel, and walked around, and the photos are so beautiful! You can follow her in IG, too. (Our session was not gifted – I paid her and will definitely book another shoot with her the next time we’re in Paris). 

 

 

Practical Tips for Traveling with Kids:

Transportation: Utilize Paris’s efficient public transportation system, including buses and the metro, which are stroller-friendly. Consider purchasing a Paris Visite pass for unlimited travel within specified zones.

Getting to and from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport: I brought a travel vest that functions like a car seat/booster. It was essential for getting to and from CDG airport, and we used it a few times within the city.

Rest and Relaxation: Pace your itinerary to allow for rest breaks and downtime, especially for younger children. Consider scheduling afternoon naps or quiet activities to recharge before exploring further. I opted to have the stroller to make navigating the city easier, and we explored as much as we could, and then ordered food to the hotel room when she was too tired to go to dinner. 

Safety: Keep a close eye on children in crowded areas and establish a meeting point in case of separation. Ensure that kids know basic safety rules, such as staying together and not talking to strangers.

Taxis: I used the G7 app (recommended by Zoe) almost every day. G7 made our life so easy. You can request a car with a booster, so it was really easy to get around. I would not request a car with a car seat since the car seat since the car seats never seemed to be properly installed. So if you have a doona or booster, these are great. I would otherwise rely on the Metro which is a great way to get around, but I didn’t want to navigate that solo with a stroller and 5 year-old. 

 

Do you need a stroller in Paris? 

This is very child-dependent, but I knew we’d need a stroller, and am so glad I brought ours. I chose a stroller than can be opened and closed one-handed, and has a carry strap, so it’s easy to use. I wouldn’t plan on carrying it for long periods of time, but it was easy to use and ideal for solo travel with a young child. 

 

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Where we Stayed

We stayed at Maison Delano in the 8th arrondissement. I did not partner with this hotel in any way, and want to share why it’s so family friendly. When booking, I saw that you can receive 50% off a second or connecting room, as well as complimentary breakfast and special welcome gifts for children. Margot was given the sweetest little stuffed dog, and everyone was so nice to her. The complimentary breakfast was great, and made mornings so easy! 

I booked a smaller room, but since I used Amex they upgraded us, which was wonderful. That said, we were moved to the smaller room for the last night, and it had a bath which would be great for kids. I loved both rooms, and probably preferred the smaller room for the two of us since it had city views and a bath. 

I would just make sure they don’t have any big events happening during your stay, or request that your room is on the street side of the hotel and not their restaurant. There was a wedding on our last night, and at 10:30PM, the music was blaring. It’s Paris and a Saturday, so it’s fine, but not ideal with a 5-year-old who needs to go to bed. I called the front desk and they were wonderful about it. The music was going to go on for at least another hour, so they offered to move us to a room on the other side of the hotel. Given how tired she was and the fact that we had a flight the next day, I took them up on their offer. 

 

My favorite Paris attractions

You could easily spend a whole week in Paris and still not see everything. There is a lot worth seeing, that you can easily pass while walking, driving, or boat tours on the Seine. We passed the Arc De Triomphe, Notre Dame Cathedral, 

Eiffel Tower: A visit to Paris wouldn’t be complete without seeing the iconic Eiffel Tower. I decided not to go to the top of the Eiffel Tower since the experience can take an hour and-a-half, and heights aren’t my favorite thing. I’d rather go to the top of Arc di Triomphe or Montmarte for city views. We did have a late dinner next to the Eiffel tower (Zoe recommended Francette, and it was great!) and were able to see it sparkle at 10PM. We both loved it! 

Palace or Versailles: If we had more time, I would have taken a day trip to Versailles, and would also recommend a guided tour there. 

Montmartre: Visit Sacre Coeur and ride the 2-story carousel. Walk around, get a crepe, and order mac and cheese at Le Coq & Fils. It’s a great place to visit with the best views, and lots to see and do. 

 

The Columns of Buren: Margot loved climbing the black and white columns at Palis Royal. There are 260 of them in varying heights, and they’re a fun spot for playing and taking photos. 

Champ de Mars: This park is right next to the Eiffel Tower, so it’s a beautiful and iconic spot to visit. 

Notre-Dame Cathedral: Although currently under restoration, Notre-Dame remains a symbol of Parisian history and architecture. Take a stroll around the exterior and explain its significance to children.

Jardin d’acclimatation: A friend recommended this amusement park, so the next time we visit the city, we’ll definitely visit. I’ve also been told Disneyland Paris is a lot less crowded and easy to navigate, but spending a day at a Disney park when I could be in Paris feels like a waste of a day to me. It’s just a short train ride from the city center though, so if we had more than a week and my kids were dying to go, I’d probably take them. 

 

My Favorite Gardens in Paris

Luxembourg Gardens: Luxembourg is one of my favorite spots in the city, and it’s especially perfect on a warm, sunny day. This is one of the best places to spend an afternoon in Paris with young children. Grab a picnic lunch, ride the carousel, rent a wooden boat, get an ice cream cone, and ride the pony rides. There’s an amazing playground, too. The carousel was her favorite – make sure your child sits on one of the outer ponies to participate in a jousting game. She loved it! I would plan on spending a lot of time here. If we had more time, I would have taken her back a second day. 

Tuileries Garden: Our hotel was a 10 minute walk to the Tuileries. Margot loved the carousel, boats, and giant cotton candy which is sold right at the carousel. It’s a great way to spend an afternoon, but we did end up having more fun at Jardin du Luxembourg. 

Jardin des Plantes: This is a beautiful garden that I love visiting, but we only had so much time. I would recommend it, but would prioritize Luxembourg and the Tuileries. 

 

Family-Friendly Activities:

Seine River Cruise: Go on a leisurely boat cruise along the Seine River – one of the best ways to see Paris landmarks. Many cruises offer commentary in multiple languages, including English.

Picnic in the Park: Take a break from sightseeing and enjoy a picnic in one of Paris’s picturesque parks, such as Jardin des Tuileries or Luxembourg Gardens. Let kids run around and play while you sit and relax.

Puppet Shows and Street Performers: Keep an eye out for street performers and puppet shows in popular areas like Montmartre or along the Seine. These impromptu performances are sure to captivate young audiences.

 

Museums

There are so many wonderful museums in Paris, and Museums are a great way to spend a rainy day in the city. Just be sure to book tickets in advance to avoid long lines! I tried to pop into L’Orangerie to show Margot the water lillies, and the line was way too long, so we missed it. I didn’t know how tired we’d be on our first day, and didn’t want to buy tickets and mis out. 

How to visit the Louvre

This was my 4th trip to Paris and first time visiting the Louvre. I would recommend going since it’s one of those things you should see and do. But – I would only do it with a private tour. We did a 2 hour tour scavenger hunt tour with Paris and Beyond Tours. It was perfect for Margot (and for me, too). Josephine was wonderful and so great with kids. And there’s nothing like a treasure hunt to keep kids engaged. She walked us right in (yes, you get to skip the lines) and made the experience fun and enjoyable for both of us. It was short and sweet, which is just what a 5-year-old needs. This would be wonderful for families with older kids, too. She really caters the tour for families depending on your kids ages.

The other kids similar in age to my daughter were being pushed in strollers with iPads which is no way to experience the Louvre. So go, but book a tour to keep everyone engaged. Margot loved the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo, and searching for (and learning about) the various statues and jewels.

 

 

Galerie Dior: If you have a child that likes gowns and sparkly things, this is a must-see. Margot audibly gasped a few times. We both loved it. 

We only had 4 days in the city, so we weren’t able to make it to my favorite museums. Next time, we’ll definitely go to L’Orangerie. I love the Picasso Museum, Musee D’Orsay, and Rodin, but wouldn’t do more than 1 in a day, and we just didn’t have the time. 

 

Dining with Kids

Paris is a city with such great food, but this was not my food trip. I love few things more than sitting at a cafe for hours,  just people watching and taking in the city. That is not what this trip was. After long days, Margot was a little tired. There were 2 nights we ended up going back to the hotel to relax, and ordered food via Uber eats. This is not something I’d normally do in Paris. But I valued exploring with her more than anything. It wasn’t worth making her sit through a meal at the end of a long day. 

Boulangeries: Margot’s favorite is pain au chocolat, so she had that every single morning. Boulangeries are great for a little treat, croissant, or warm baguette. 

Kid-Friendly Restaurants: Look for restaurants with children’s menus and accommodating staff. Many establishments in Paris welcome families and provide high chairs and kid-friendly utensils.

Local Markets: Experience Parisian culture by visiting local markets like Marché Bastille or Marché des Enfants Rouges. Sample fresh produce, cheeses, and pastries, and let kids pick out their favorite treats.

Picnics: Take advantage of Paris’s abundance of bakeries and delicatessens to assemble a picnic lunch or dinner. Find a scenic spot in a park or along the Seine and enjoy a relaxed meal as a family.

Bakeries and Patisseries: Indulge in Paris’s pastries and desserts at local bakeries and patisseries. Margot loved sugar crepes (you can find them on almost every corner) and Laduree’s macarons! Let kids sample macarons, éclairs, and croissants, or enjoy a leisurely afternoon at a café with hot chocolate and crepes.

 

Where we ate

Popu Pizza: Kids can make their own pizzas, but we ended up ordering pizza to our hotel room via Uber Eats. Zoe recommend Popu Pizza, and it did not disappoint. 

La Maison d’Isabelle: Go here for a croissant! 

Coq et Fils: This is a nicer restaurant in Montmartre, and Margot loved the mac and cheese. I ordered the roast chicken and potatoes, and it was delicious. I would recommend making a reservation for dinner. Again, I didn’t know how tired she would be, but we got lucky and they had a spot at the bar for us. 

Francette: This restaurant is on a boat docked directly under the Eiffel Tower. Get a meal or or drink with a view. Margot really liked their chicken tenders. I was tired and not that hungry since it was so late, so I just ordered an aperol spritz and had a few bites of her dinner. Make a reservation for 9 or 9:30 to see the Eiffel Tower sparkle at 10PM. 

Uber Eats: No, this isn’t a restaurant, but if you’re traveling with kids and staying at a hotel or Airbnb, it’s a great option for ordering food when you need some down time. 

Our favorite toy stores

Si Tu Veux: Zoe also recommend this charming toy shop. I bought a beautiful wooden boat for Jack, and Margot picked out a few small toys for her and her sister. 

King Jouet: This store isn’t nearly as charming as Si Tu Veux, but Margot loved it. 

 

Paris offers endless experiences for families traveling with kids, from iconic landmarks and museums to charming parks and activities. By planning ahead and incorporating family-friendly activities into your itinerary, you can create lasting memories and foster a love of travel in your children. I highly recommend traveling to Paris with young children – my daughter didn’t want to leave. We had the best time together, and can’t wait to go back. 

 

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