I have lots of Paris itineraries, ideas and photos to still share but decided to break it up a bit by age. I notice so many parents that reach out for tips on places to visit, want to know what to do or if it’s “a great place for” a specific age group. Since we are currently traveling with all ages from a toddler to a teen, I’m happy to give guidance on all age groups! Today, I’ve put together a guide to visiting Paris with teens and tweens.
While parenting tweens and teens at home is not always the easiest job, parenting them while traveling can be a ton of fun. They’re old enough to appreciate cool spots to eat, they can help give ideas of things they want to see and do and you don’t have to worry they’re going to run off and get lost. But like traveling with little kids, if you make it too educational and cram too many museums into a day, you can quickly have a grumpy teen on your hand and be subject to many an eye roll.
I can’t guarantee this guide will ensure no eye rolls but I did have a teen and a tween help me put the list together. They let me add zero boring things and if all else fails: Paris does have a very beautiful Starbucks (more info on that in the guide).
Paris with Teens and Tweens
Paris Day 1:
Wake up late, walk to get hot chocolate and a french pastry for breakfast. Start the trip in a relaxing way. Yes, there’s tons to see but a tip for traveling with teens: letting them sleep an extra hour can sometimes really make the day better. We stayed near Rue Cler and loved that it was such a nice little neighborhood to stroll around in the morning: fruit stands, cafes, quiet enough to let them roam a bit.
Pick a tour that will show them the city in a fun “non adult-y tour” way. Two suggestions:
1. A River Cruise: there are a number to pick from, some even with themes. It’s an easy way to see the city while relaxing on a boat
2. Vintage Sidecar Tour: Our friends did this with their tween & teen daughters this summer and loved it. They did the 9am tour on a Sunday so there was no traffic and they could cruise around and stop to get off and see different sights. They used Txango Tours and said they’d highly recommend.
Jardin du Luxembourg: This was my kids’ favorite park. No matter their age, suggest they get a boat to push around the pond. It’s not as easy as it looks. Then walk around and explore, get some gelato or soda.
When I asked my tween & teen their top 3 favorite things we did in Paris, both listed “seeing the Eiffel Tower sparkle” as one of their top picks. Eat dinner at Francette. It’s a boat and it’s basically under the tower view wise. It’s a hip spot teens will love and even serve mini churros with chocolate to dip them in. We made the reservation at a time we could be there in the daylight but still there when the sun went down. Then after dinner we walked closer to the tower to see it sparkle.
Paris Day 2:
Musee du Parfum: This is a tiny museum with a very affordable perfume making class. My girls absolutely loved this. You get to make your own fragrance to bring home with you.
Galeries Lafayette: The Musee du Parfum is across the street from Galeries Lafayette. This department store is a must visit with tweens and teens. It’s spectacular to see and if you go up to the top floor you can go outside and see the city views.
Lindt Chocolate: No, not really very Paris but it’s across the street from Galeries Lafayette, serves great coffee for parents and gives out free chocolate samples. Teens seem to love free samples, so added this to the list.
PSG Tour: If perfume making isn’t their thing and soccer is, head to the tour at PSG. Or, if they like both, I’d suggest the PSG tour firs thing in the morning and then perfume & Galeries Lafayette after. The tour at PSG was awesome. You do it at your own pace, so really the kids are just walking around exploring one of the most amazing sports stadiums in the world. Plus they get a chance to walk through the tunnel like they’re heading out for a game. Then, of course, there’s a giant PSG shop.
Paris Day 3:
The following can be done in any order but I added them all to one day because they are near each other. Also, breaking up the 2 museums with running around the Tuileries is highly recommended.
Musee de L’Orangerie: This was their favorite museum. It’s small enough that I let them explore a bit on their own. There is a great headset that is a scavenger hunt through the museum. The Monet rooms are incredible and their massive, curved shape is even impressive to the tween & teen audience.
Tuileries Garden: Walk out of the Musee de L’ Orangerie into the Tuileries Garden. There are lots of cute little spots to eat right in the park. Make sure to find the trampolines in the park. This was a huge hit.
If you are there in the summer, there is the annual Fun Fair of the Tuileries. This was another thing that my girls both chose as a “top 3” in Paris. There are rides, games, slushies: just a ton of fun.
The Louvre: This may be an unpopular opinion, but I felt the Louvre was incredibly overwhelming and too crowded to enjoy. Unless your child loves art and has a list of things they want to see at the Louvre I think it’s a: see Mona Lisa and go. It cracked my girls up the number of people crowded in one room trying to see such a small painting. They both agreed it was cool to see and hope to go back someday when it’s not so crowded.
Jardin du Palais Royal: The famous black and white columns. Walk over and snap some fun photos
Paris Day 4:
Montmartre: We loved Montmartre. Leave a full day if you can and stroll around. I would highly recommend either hiring Zoe, from The Petit Guide or at least buying her Montmartre with Kids Guide (20 euro). I would have loved to have had Zoe take us on a tour but she was away when we visited. I bought and printed her guide and it was awesome. Not only does it give easy to follow directions it shares cool facts and things to see. Here are some of the things my teen & tween loved about Montmartre:
- The walk up to see Basilique du Sacré-Cœur and the views
- The area near Basilique du Sacré-Cœur with all of the artists painting
- Buying a lock and adding our name/ adding it to the fence
- The “Love Wall”
- Seeing Moulin Rouge
- So many cute shops
Fancy Starbucks: One more thing they said I have to add in this guide is where to find the “most beautiful Starbucks”. It’s on Boulevard des Capucines. From the outside it looks like any Starbucks and even the front area where you order is nothing special. Then, once you head back to sit down you feel like you are drinking your Starbucks in a palace. It dates back three centuries. It was a major highlight for my Starbucks loving gal. It’s not far from the Opéra Garnier, so add in some history after you get your Pink Drink.
Street Food: Tweens & teens tend to be a hungry crowd to travel with. Good thing Paris has some great street food. Getting crepes while walking around was a major highlight. Whether it’s nutella for the sweet tooth or cheese… make sure you get a few on the trip!
Where to Stay: We stayed in two different spots this summer in Paris. For most of the time, we were in this apartment. It was wonderful, spacious and the girls loved their room. The absolutely loved that you could see the Eiffel Tower sparkle at night right from the living room windows. The neighborhood was perfect for this age.
After traveling around a bit, we were back in Paris for a few days and stayed in this apartment. It’s a totally different area of the city but also cool for teens & tweens because it’s a “hip” area. It’s also near a major Metro hub so easy to jet out to different places.
There is plenty more to see and do in Paris but these were my girls favorites on our trip this summer, at ages 11 and 13. There are also so many great spots not too far from Paris to see. We loved our time in Colmar and my teen did a day trip to Normandy. More France info coming soon….
(Visited 539 times, 13 visits today)