Enchanting parks, playgrounds and special attractions specifically designed to delight and entertain children of all ages make Paris a wonderfully family-friendly destination. Venues across the city cater to les enfants (children) with workshops, exhibitions, and many restaurants have kids’ menus.

This four- to seven-day itinerary highlights the best Paris has to offer for families. In partnership with Delta Vacations, we’ll show you how to Go Beyond the Flight and get more from your vacation experience. Here you’ll find just a sample of accommodations available through Delta Vacations that are perfect for families – plus easy transfer options and, most importantly, one-of-a-kind activities both on and off the beaten path. 

Whether it’s an elevated experience at a well-known tourist destination or an under-the-radar gem, there’s something special for every family in the City of Light.

Plan for elevated experiences at Paris' most recognizable places © Craig Waxman, Polysphere Creative, for Lonely Planet

Day one – Left Bank favorites

Begin your family adventure with an overview of the city. A Seine Cruise, Eiffel Tower & City Tour experience is a triple-treat, combining a panoramic tour of Paris; priority access to the Eiffel Tower’s 2nd floor (where story windows provide an insight to the lifts’ mechanics, and a vision well lets you to gaze all the way down through glass panels to the ground); and a one-hour cruise on the Seine. From the boat, you’ll be able to play "I spy" with numerous other standout Parisian landmarks such as the city’s famous cathedral, Notre Dame (saved from destruction after the 2019 fire, and due to reopen once again in late 2024).

Having ticked off some of the city’s most famous sights, heading off the beaten track to lively street rue Daguerre, in the 14e arrondissement (city district), will give you a real snapshot of local Parisian life, lined with food shops and cafes. Nearby, fearless teens might be intrigued by Les Catacombes. a spine-tingling walk through passages tightly packed with skulls and bones. Beneath Paris’ streets, this  macabre ossuary evolved at the turn of the 19th century when overflowing Parisian cemeteries exhumed remains and relocated them to this dark, damp abandoned quarry. (Skip a visit here if your children are young, or if anyone in your party gets claustrophobic; it’s definitely not for the faint-of-heart.) 

© Graphics by Jacob Rhoades/Lonely Planet

Up in the fresh air, a winner with the whole family in the St-Germain neighborhood, 6e, is the city’s loveliest park, the Jardin du Luxembourg. Dedicated to the children of Paris by Napoléon, it’s filled with delightfully old-fashioned activities. Kids can prod 1920s-design toy sailing boats with a stick on the Grand Bassin octagonal pond, ride the beautiful carousel and laugh at the antics of marionettes at the park’s little puppet theatre Théâtre du Luxembourg. Also here are pony rides and modern playgrounds. Kiosks in the park sell snacks like candy floss and cold drinks, or bring a picnic (across the city, Paris’ bakeries not only turn out crunchy, elongated baguettes, but are great for filled sandwiches and savory staples like quiches, as well as sweet pastries).

Round out the day in the neighboring 5e arrondissement, better known as the Latin Quarter. Wonderous candy store Le Bonbon Au Palais is even educational, themed like a  school geography classroom with traditional artisanal sweets from all over France. Close by, overlooking the Seine in front of square René Viviani (home to Paris’ oldest tree), English-language bookstore Shakespeare & Company, with nooks and crannies filled with books and a wishing well, has a dedicated children’s section and an attached cafe.

There are plenty of classic experiences in Paris the whole family can enjoy © Craig Waxman, Polysphere Creative, for Lonely Planet

Day two – Eastern Paris adventures

Meeting lions, giraffes, vivid-pink flamingos and white rhinos makes a memorable start to the day. You can see these and some 3000 other creatures from camouflaged vantage points across different biozones at the Parc Zoologique de Paris.

The zoo is at the edge of Paris’ rambling eastern forest, the Bois de Vincennes. In warm weather, it’s  well worth exploring if you have time in your schedule. The centerpiece for families is the botanical Parc Floral de Paris, with magnificent flower displays, as well as playgrounds and various concerts and shows for children in season. Once royal hunting grounds, the forest retains a royal château (the only castle within central Paris), the moated, fortified Château de Vincennes. Older kids might also enjoy hiring a rowing boat on the forest’s Lac Daumesnil.

Paris’ efficient, easily navigable underground rail, the metro, will zip you to mainline train station Gare de Lyon, where spectacular art-nouveau restaurant Le Train Bleu makes a fabulous backdrop for lunch. Its children’s version of its gourmet multicourse menus features smaller portions of traditional French dishes, such as scallops, monkfish or beef tartare.

Hop back on the metro to reach another superb family destination, northeastern Paris’ Parc de la Villette. So much more than a park, it’s a giant cultural center where attractions include a science museum, the Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie, with a special children’s section for ages two to seven, and a planetarium. Budding musicians will love the Cité de la Musique – Philharmonie de Paris complex, with a music museum, concerts, shows, instrument workshops and a space especially for children aged four to 10, the Philharmonie des Enfants.

From the Parc de la Villette, you can make you way southwest to Canal St-Martin, with views of swing bridges pivoting to let boats pass through, and cafes and restaurants galore along its banks and surrounding side streets.

Tours, tastings and activities offer an in-depth look at what makes Paris, Paris © Craig Waxman, Polysphere Creative, for Lonely Planet

Day three – Paris activities

Foodie families will want to make a beeline to Montmartre in northern Paris. This neighborhood is one of the best areas in Paris for food-shopping streets and specialized gourmet boutiques, alongside some of the most exciting dining venues in Paris today, run by a new generation of creative chefs. An ideal way to discover the area is on a small-group Secret Food Tour of Montmartre.

If you’re inspired to make your own creations (and memories) in the kitchen, Montmartre cookery school Cook’n With Class runs short sessions of with English-language instruction by professional chefs. Kids over the age of 12 can join in with the adults; for younger chefs, there are parent-child family classes available (making a three-course French meal, patisseries or macarons) and classes just for kids.

© Graphics by Jacob Rhoades/Lonely Planet

Back down the hill from Montmartre at the western edge of Le Marais, the "inside-out" Centre Pompidou cultural center, with brightly colored pipes, vents and utilities on its exterior, will undergo a multiyear renovation after the Paris 2024 Olympics. Prior to that, you can still catch great exhibitions at its Musée National d’Art Moderne, France’s national collection of art dating from 1905 onwards, as well as art workshops for kids aged three to 12 and teen events in Studio 13/16. An unmissable sight while you’re here is the panoramic view over Paris from the building’s rooftop.

If your family trip coincides with the colder months (around October to March), you can catch clowns, trapeze artists and acrobats at the city’s winter circus, the Cirque d’Hiver Bouglione, which has entertained children since 1852 in a striking 20-sided building on Le Marais’ eastern side.

Le Marais’ plethora of restaurants includes many popular with families, such as Breizh Café. It cooks authentic Breton savory buckwheat-flour galettes and sweet crêpes with toppings such as deliciously sticky salted caramel; there are several other locations around Paris.

Make a plan to mix the most classic experiences with a view of Paris most travelers don't take the time to see © Craig Waxman, Polysphere Creative, for Lonely Planet

Days four to seven – Out-of-town explorations

Kids fascinated by princesses and princes, and adults interested in history will be wowed by the Château de Versailles. The Sun King, Louis XIV, transformed his father’s hunting lodge 14 miles southwest of central Paris in the mid-17th century into this 700-room palace and ornate formal gardens complete with splashing fountains, reflective ponds and canals. King Louis XVI and his queen, Marie Antoinette, held court here before the French Revolution ultimately ended the French monarchy. Now a Unesco World Heritage–listed monument, the estate’s scale and role in history mean that seeing Versailles with a guide on a coach trip from Paris helps to put it into context.

Other day trips from Paris include a Giverny bus tour with a guide every spring through to fall to see impressionist artist Claude Monet’s house and colorful gardens in the pretty Normandy village.

Extra days on your Paris vacation will allow time for trips to other family highlights like amusement park Jardin d’Acclimatation, in Paris’ western forest, the Bois de Boulogne, reached by a little ride-on train from Porte Maillot.

Farther out, Disneyland Paris tours from Delta Vacations, including tickets and transfers from the city, let you make the most of every magical moment at its two theme parks: Disneyland Park, featuring classic rides and beloved characters, and Walt Disney Studios Park, immersing you in the animated worlds of Disney, Pixar and Marvel. Another amusement park a day trip from the city, Parc Astérix, is based on the classic French comic books. 

Families will want a hassle-free home base from which to explore the city © Craig Waxman, Polysphere Creative, for Lonely Planet

Where to stay in Paris for families

Families will find plenty of accommodation options in Paris to fit their needs but booking well ahead is always a good idea, especially in busy holiday periods. For hassle-free travel to and from the airport, arrange a private van transfer, bookable through Delta Vacations.

An ideal home base for seeing the sights of Paris is the Paris Marriott Champs-Élysées. Right on the avenue des Champs-Élysées, it’s an unforgettable spot with family-friendly rooms and suites, and babysitting services available.

© Graphics by Jacob Rhoades/Lonely Planet

Providing space, privacy and practicality for families traveling with children, many of the rooms at the boutique Majestic Hotel and Spa have kitchenettes to whip up meals sourced from Paris’ food shops and markets (there’s also an in-house restaurant offering room service). Spa facilities include a swimming pool. It’s situated just a few footsteps from the Arc de Triomphe.

Even the most jaded teens will be impressed by the super-chic serviced apartments (which come with full kitchens), amenities including a gym, and the awesome location of La Clef Champs-Élysées Paris by The Crest Collection, in a stunning Belle Époque building on the city’s most famous street.

Why this partnership?: Delta Vacations is reinventing itself – your miles are worth more when you use them toward your vacation, so you can do more. Choose from flights, stays, rides and activities all over the world, all in one place.

Sponsored by Delta Vacations

As a travel entertainment and inspirational media outlet, we sometimes incorporate brand sponsors into our efforts. This activity is clearly labeled across our platforms.

This story was crafted collaboratively between Delta Vacations and Lonely Planet. Both parties provided research and curated content to produce this story. We disclose when information isn’t ours.

With sponsored content, both Lonely Planet and our brand partners have specific responsibilities:

  • Brand partner

    Determines the concept, provides briefing, research material, and may provide feedback.

  • Lonely Planet

    We provide expertise, firsthand insights, and verify with third-party sources when needed.

Explore related stories

Young Asian woman embracing her little girl on the street. Bonding between mother and daughter. Family lifestyle. Love and care concept.


Paris on a budget: affordable ways to experience the city

Mar 31, 2024 • 10 min read