Museums to discover with the family in Paris

Suggestions for cultural outings with children.

Discovery trail

A visit to a museum is a great way to expose your children to the arts – especially in Paris, where museums have come up with a variety of inventive ways to make a visit fun for children. They use digital technology, apps and touch screen guides to make exhibits easy to understand.

Even more appealing: entry to all the national museums is free for under-18s. Certain museums also offer free entry on the first Sunday of the month.

 More info on free museums and monuments in Paris


Musée des Arts décoratifs, Galerie des Jouets, Paris © Erika Da Silva

A Paris institution, the Louvre provides an opportunity for kids to make their first foray into art appreciation. It houses a treasure trove of artworks, including artefacts from Ancient Egypt and canvases by great masters, such as the celebrated Mona Lisa. The museum also has entertaining children’s trails. La Petite Galerie, an educational section with digital equipment, gives families an interactive introduction to the arts.

Another Paris classic, the Musée d’Orsay, has a treasure hunt trail for families, and entertaining visits designed especially for children. A tablet app, The Musée d'Orsay for Families, offers themed tours of the museum. Visitors with a touch screen tablet can explore the rich diversity of the collections from different angles.

A visit to the Musée Grévin, with its waxworks of famous people, is fun for all the family. The discovery tour for children aged 7 to 12 shows how the wax figures on display are made, and includes lots of interesting historical details.


Musée National de la Marine

The Musée national de la Marine(closed till end of 2021)also offers a special tour-and-workshop for children from 7 to 12 years of age. Meanwhile, adults can browse the wonderful collection of scale models of historic boats.

The Musée de l’Homme is offering a 15-minute entertainment, ‘A l’improviste’, on a key theme from the museum, as well as guided tours for families and workshops centred around prehistory, human evolution, world cultures, and more!

And for foodie families, the gourmet chocolate museum Choco-Story offers educational tours for children and a treasure hunt, as well as chocolate-making workshops alongside a chocolatier.

In Giverny, near Paris, there is plenty to see at the house where the painter Claude Monet once lived. The water lily pond, the little bridge under the weeping willows and the ivy climbing the walls were among the master’s sources of inspiration. Children will enjoy exploring the gardens and learning more about the painter’s life during a visit to the Musée des Impressionnismes near the house.

Good to know: some Musée nationaux, like the Louvre, provide visitors with pushchairs, baby carriers and wheelchairs, as well as a cloakroom and a left luggage service.

 More info on museums

Storytelling tours for children

Learning while having fun is child’s play in Paris, where museums organize educational workshops, interactive tours and a variety of storytelling activities to initiate children into culture. These original and entertaining programmes are specially designed for family days out.

The Musée Grévin, the Musée de la Vie romantique (closed until June 2018), the Musée Carnavalet (closed until the end of 2019) and the Petit Palais  have special storytelling tours for children. Puzzle trails, activities and interesting stories will keep the whole family entertained.


Musée du quai Branly, Paris © OTCP - Lois Lammerhuber

The Musée du quai Branly - Jacques Chirac is a crossroads of different civilizations in the heart of Paris, providing insight into many of the world’s cultures. It organizes storytelling tours for children, explaining the customs and traditions of ancient civilizations from around the world.

And, for history buffs, the Musée de l’Armée has detective games, guided tours and storytelling sessions to teach children about iconic historical figures through the collections on display. Finally, the Musée du Moyen-âge (closed until mid-July 2018) regularly hosts a ‘story hour’ and ‘discovery trail’, two entertaining, family-friendly history workshops.


Creative workshops for children

Paris museums host a variety of workshops aimed at awakening and stimulating children’s artistic inclinations. These include concerts, model-making tutorials and beginner’s art lessons. These activities for small children and pre-teens accompanied by an adult are guaranteed to keep the kids happily occupied.

The Louvre, the Espace Dali, the Musée en Herbe and the MAD - the Arts décoratifs all offer absorbing classical and modern art workshops. A good way to spend a rainy weekend!

Kids can dabble in contemporary art at the Palais de Tokyo’s ‘Tok Tok’ creative workshop, which explores a number of different themes. ‘L’Atelier des enfants’ at the Centre Pompidou, trails and workshops at the Fondation Louis Vuitton and the ‘Maison des Petits’ at the Centquatre are also designed to get children interested in contemporary art. Lafayette Anticipations is organizing art workshops on the themes of fashion, design, etc. at Studiolo.

The Monnaie de Paris is also offering guided tours for families as well as discovery workshops where the secrets of coin minting are revealed.

For music fans, the Philharmonie de Paris offers music appreciation and music making workshops for children from 3 months to 12 years old, as well as a special family discount on tickets to weekend concerts.

Little Villette is putting on themed exhibitions in the Pavillon Paul-Delouvrier, a slew of workshops for children aged 1-12 based around cookery, circus skills, street art, dance, nature, music, pottery, etc., as well as other activities to go along and enjoy on Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday afternoons: reading room, games space, Lego® table, etc.

Atelier Mini Factory en famille - fondation Louis Vuitton © Fondation Louis Vuitton - Martin Argyroglo

Paris is also a cinema lovers’ paradise. The Cinémathèque française has a number of children’s workshops on vocal training, screenwriting and animation.

The Musée Archéa in Val d’Oise provides fascinating insights into archaeological techniques, and the interactive exhibitions are a great way to turn children into history enthusiasts. At the creative workshops, kids take part in a dig and research the items they find, like real archaeologists.

In the visual arts field, the Maison européenne de la Photographie in Paris and the Musée français de la Photographie in the nearby town of Bièvres organize children’s photography workshops.

Helping kids make sense of science

It’s never too early to discover the wonders of science. Paris has any number of activities to help inquiring minds learn more about the world around them. Besides their rich collections, places like the Palais de la découverte, the Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie and the Musée des Arts et Métiers offer a range of amazing and highly instructive activities geared to children.

Nearby, the Géode has the biggest hemispherical screen in Europe. It often shows 3D documentaries and feature films suitable for children: an enjoyable outing for the whole family.

Atelier enfant à la Cité des Sciences et de l'Industrie, Paris © DR

The Exploradôme in Vitry-su-Seine is an interactive museum with lots of interesting science experiments: making water safe to drink, creating an optical illusion, learning to use navigation tools, and so on. There is a range of educational workshops geared to kids of different ages.

In Boulogne-Billancourt, Drôle de Science organizes all kinds of science workshops for kids aged 4-12. They’ll learn about the five senses, electricity, the world’s oceans, the workings of the human body and much more.

Finally, the Musée de l’Air et de l’Espace in Paris-Le Bourget airport has a wonderful collection of aircraft and a planetarium, and organizes an educational children’s workshop called ‘Planète Pilote’.

Multimedia discovery for families

Kids these days are up to speed with digital connectivity, new technology and online games. Paris has plenty of instructive, innovative activities for digital-age children and teenagers.

Offering free entry with no prior booking required, Studio 13/16 at the Centre Pompidou is the first interactive space devoted to teenagers. The interactive artworks and the experiments in digital creativity spanning various art genres will appeal to teens and adults alike.


Le Cube, atelier Dirti for iPad, 2, Paris © Olivia Lacoste/Le Cube

At the forefront of digital culture, the Gaîté Lyrique and the Centquatre regularly hold talks and exhibitions with a focus on new technology. The Cube – the centre for digital creation in Issy-Les-Moulineaux organizes interactive workshops for children up to 11 years old.

 



Centre Pompidou Member

Museum
Place Georges Pompidou, Paris, 75004
Book

The Centre Pompidou, designed by Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, is a 20th-century architectural marvel, immediately recognizable......

Cité des sciences et de l'industrie Member

Museum
30 avenue Corentin Cariou, Paris, 75019
Book

At the heart of the largest landscaped park in Paris, there is an original and spectacular place. You just have to step foot......

Grévin Paris Member

Museum
10 boulevard Montmartre, Paris, 75009
Book

Like to have a one-to-one with Louis XIV, Mozart or Jean Reno? Are you a Ronaldo fan? Have you fallen for Ryan Gosling or are......

Musée d'Orsay Member

Museum
1 rue de la Légion d'Honneur, Paris, 75007
Book

Internationally renowned for its rich collection of Impressionist art, the Musée d'Orsay also displays all Western artistic......

Musée du Louvre Member

Museum
Pyramide du Louvre, Paris, 75001
Book

Every trip to the capital deserves a visit to the Louvre to discover the wealth of treasures it contains. The museum houses......

Musée du quai Branly - Jacques Chirac Member

Museum
37 quai Branly, Paris, 75007
Book

Located on the banks of the Seine, near the Eiffel Tower, the Musée du Quai Branly - Jacques Chirac exhibits 3,500 works of art......

Monnaie de Paris Member

Museum
11 quai de Conti, Paris, 75006

The Monnaie de Paris is changing. In April 2011, to make their heritage accessible to a wider audience, the Monnaie de Paris......

Fondation Louis Vuitton Member

Museum
Bois de Boulogne - 8 avenue du Mahatma Gandhi, Paris, 75016
Book

The Fondation Louis Vuitton, situated in the Bois de Boulogne, a stone's throw from the Jardin d’Acclimatation, opened its doors......

Philharmonie de Paris Member

Concert hall
221 avenue Jean Jaurès, Paris, 75019
Book

The Philharmonie de Paris is the new musical heart of the capital. The new building was designed by architect Jean Nouvel. Beside......

Fondation Claude Monet - Giverny

Museum
84 rue Claude Monet, Giverny, 27620
Book

Claude Monet's property at Giverny became the Claude Monet Foundation in 1980. House with its pink crushed brick façade where the......

Palais de la découverte Member

Museum
Avenue Franklin D. Roosevelt, Paris, 75008

The Palais de la découverte, part of Universcience, presents fundamental and contemporary science in a dynamic way in the form of......

Paris Story Member

Guided tours
  • Opéra - Grands Boulevards

In this screening room, discover 2000 years of Parisian history in one hour on panoramic screens. Break through the secrets of......

Pavillons de Bercy - Musée des Arts Forains Member

Museum
53 avenue des Terroirs de France, Paris, 75012

The Pavillons de Bercy house 4 different areas: The Musée des Arts Forains The Théâtre du Merveilleux The Salons Vénitiens......

Gaîté Lyrique Member

Museum
3 bis rue Papin, Paris, 75003

La Gaîté Lyrique is dedicated to digital culture and holds exhibitions, workshops, concerts, talks and screenings. It is a mix......

Choco-Story Paris - Le musée du chocolat Member

Museum
28 boulevard de Bonne Nouvelle, Paris, 75010

You think you know everything about chocolate? Come and enjoy new chocolatey experiences! Discover the history of......

Cité de la musique Member

Museum
221 avenue Jean Jaurès, Paris, 75019

A venue truly devoted to music, Cité de la Musique, situated in the south of the Parc de la Villette near the Conservatoire de......

Dalí Paris Member

Museum
11 rue Poulbot, Paris, 75018

In the heart of Montmartre, Espace Dalí presents the only permanent exhibition in France entirely devoted to the master of......

Atelier des Lumières Member

Museum
38 rue Saint-Maur, Paris, 75011

Located between Bastille and Nation, in a former foundry in the eleventh arrondissement of Paris, the Atelier des Lumières will......

Musée des Arts et Métiers Member

Museum
60 rue Réaumur, Paris, 75003

The Musée des Arts et Métiers, founded in 1794, is housed in the Abbaye de Saint-Martin-des-Champs. With a total surface are of......

Musée de l'Armée - Invalides Member

Museum
129 rue de Grenelle, Paris, 75007

The Musée de l'Armée, created in 1905, is located in the prestigious setting of the Hôtel National des Invalides. It was created......

Le Centquatre

Exhibition and Trade Show venue
5 rue Curial, Paris, 75019

The CENTQUATRE is a new Paris city council artistic establishment and a unique place devoted to production and innovation.......

Studio 13/16

Exhibition and Trade Show venue
Centre Pompidou - Place Georges Pompidou, Paris, 75004

Studio 13/16 is a space within the Centre Pompidou for teens aged from 13 to 16. The programme of events is based on......

Musée des impressionnismes - Giverny

Museum
99 rue Claude Monet, Giverny, 27620

Discover, at the heart of Giverny, the works of celebrated impressionist artists: Pierre Bonnard, Claude Monet, Edgar Degas,......

Parc de La Villette - Plein Air Member

Exhibition and Trade Show venue
211 avenue Jean Jaurès, Paris, 75019

Built on the site of former abattoirs and designed by the architect Bernard Tschumi, the Parc de la Villette is the largest urban......

MAD - Musée des Arts Décoratifs

Museum
107 rue de Rivoli, Paris, 75001

Situated in a wing of the Louvre, the Musée des Arts Décoratifs provides visitors with an insight into the decorative arts from......

Lafayette Anticipations

Museum
9 rue du Plâtre, Paris, 75004

La fondation d’entreprise Galeries Lafayette a fait de ce bâtiment du XIXe siècle, réhabilité par Rem Koolhaas, un nouveau lieu......

Archéa - Archéologie en Pays de France

Museum
56 rue de Paris, Louvres, 95380

The Archéa museum presents the latest objects from archaeological sites in exhibitions that are varied, lively and interactive,......

Cinémathèque française

Museum
51 rue de Bercy, Paris, 75012

Enjoy the fabulous and exciting history of this rare and unique collection, entirely devoted to cinema. This wonderful venue......

Exploradôme

Museum
18 avenue Henri Barbusse, Vitry-sur-Seine, 94400

Exploradôme is an interactive museum for the discovery of science, multimedia and sustainable development. After 10 successful......

Maison européenne de la photographie

Museum
5-7 rue de Fourcy, Paris, 75004

The magnificent "Hénault de Cantobre" private mansion (18th century) regularly presents exhibitions about the themes, movements,......

Musée de Cluny - Le monde médiéval

Museum
6 place Paul Painlevé, Paris, 75005

The visit begins on the Boulevard Saint-Michel, where even before entering the museum, you can admire the vestiges of Gallo-Roman......

Musée de l'Air et de l'Espace

Museum
Aéroport de Paris - Le Bourget - BP 173, Le Bourget Cedex, 93352

The Musée de l’Air et de l’Espace is the oldest aeronautics museum around today. Originally built at Chalais-Meudon, it is now......

Musée en herbe

Museum
23 rue de L'Arbre-Sec, Paris, 75001

Since 1975, the Musée en Herbe has been presenting art exhibitions available to everyone. Prestigious art exhibitions and......

La Géode

Cinema
26 avenue Corentin Cariou, Paris, 75019

Located in the heart of the Parc de la Villette, the Géode is an exceptional cinema for so many reasons: the giant steel globe,......

Le Cube - Centre de création numérique

Exhibition and Trade Show venue
20 cours Saint-Vincent, Issy-les-Moulineaux, 92130

In Issy-les-Moulineaux, just outside Paris, Le Cube, centre for digital creation, aims to help the public learn about digital......