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Paris with Babies

Embarking on Our First European Adventure with the Kiddos!

We were so excited for our first trip since moving to Europe - and what a wonderful adventure it was! After carefully considering our options, Paris emerged as the ideal destination for our family.

One of the key factors in our decision-making process was the need for a direct and efficient travel option. With young children in tow, we wanted to minimize the time and hassle of the journey, aiming for a total travel time of no more than 6 hours. Driving was quickly ruled out,

so this left us focusing on direct flights or train connections. Another priority was going to be budget due to our recent move across the Pond.

The prospect of visiting Disneyland Paris for our toddler's upcoming birthday sealed the deal. Not only would this provide a magical experience for our little one, but the 4-hour train ride from our current location was both budget-friendly and logistically convenient.

Ultimately, the combination of a direct travel option, ample activities for both kids, and the opportunity to celebrate a special occasion made Paris the clear frontrunner for our first European family adventure.

Here are the details of our long weekend in Baltimore.

And incase you want to skip ahead to other sections:

May stays in Paris can be quite expensive, especially when it comes to accommodation. Given that we were traveling with six people—our family of four plus the kids' grandparents—it was important to stay within budget.

We were so excited when we found a whole house just outside of Paris for less than €900 for 4 nights. It seemed too good to be true! But when we got there, we were so happy to see that the house was amazing. The house was very spacious, with enough room for all 6 of us. It had a lovely garden where the kids could play. It felt very private and peaceful, which was great after busy days exploring the city.

What we loved most was that this was clearly a real family home that they rented out sometimes. It wasn't just a vacation rental property. The house had everything we needed to keep the kids entertained and make ourselves at home.

This hidden gem of a house was the perfect base for our Paris adventure. It was such a great value, and really gave us an authentic local experience that made our family trip even more special.

The town of Vincennes was beautiful. It was very walkable, with plenty of shops, cafes, and restaurants. The area felt very family-friendly, and it was a delightful place to stay outside the hustle and bustle of the city. The local atmosphere was warm and inviting, and the people we met, often fellow families, were kind and welcoming—an experience that pleasantly contrasted with some of my previous trips to Paris.

The only real downside was the travel time to get anywhere.

One of our plans for the trip was to visit Disneyland Paris, so it was crucial for us to stay near the RER A line, which goes there. According to the listing, the home was "within a 15-minute walk" of the station. However, upon arrival, we discovered it was closer to a 25-minute walk—30 minutes with a toddler. Once on the train or metro, it took an additional 20-30 minutes to reach our destinations. This meant we were looking at an extra hour of travel after our long days.

In hindsight, I wish we had taken more advantage of the bus system to save some walking, but the bus schedules didn't ultimately save much time.

For our next Paris trip, I think we'll aim to stay within the city's central Zone 1, closer to a metro or bus stop. While the home we found this time was lovely, the location further out from the main attractions meant more travel time, which wasn't ideal, especially since we only spent one day at Disneyland.

By staying in the heart of the city on our next visit, we can minimize commute times and have easier access to all the sites we want to explore. The convenience of being near public transportation will be worth the trade-off, even if it means sacrificing the extra living space and private outdoor area we enjoyed this time around.

Overall, the experience taught us the importance of prioritizing location for maximum efficiency when traveling with babies or young kids. We'll keep that in mind as we plan our next Parisian adventure.

Transportation to Paris:

For our trip to Paris, we traveled from Düsseldorf and opted for the Eurostar direct train. The journey took just under four hours with no transfers, making it an ideal choice for traveling with two young toddlers.

We purchased six seats, including two for our kids, which cost only €30 round trip per child—a fantastic deal! The extra space was absolutely worth the cost, even if you don't think your child will use the seat. By the time we reached Aachen, two stops after Düsseldorf, the train was completely full.

For my complete guide to taking the Eurostar in Europe, visit my blog here.

Transportation within Paris

One of the logistical challenges of exploring Paris with little ones is managing the city's complex public transportation system while maneuvering a stroller. While the metro, buses, and trains can be an efficient way to get around, accessibility is often lacking, with many stations and vehicles presenting obstacles for families with young children.

The metro, in particular, can be a tricky endeavor. Many stations lack elevators or escalators, forcing you to carry your stroller up and down flights of stairs. Even when elevators are available, they may be out of service or difficult to locate. Often we were just left with no other option than to carry up or down steps within not only to enter the station but also within the station to get from one train to another or onto the platform.

Buses, on the other hand, tend to be more stroller-friendly. Most buses have designated spaces for folding strollers, and the boarding process is generally simpler than navigating metro turnstiles. However, increased traffic congestion can make bus routes less time-efficient than the metro for certain journeys.

For more details on navigating the Paris Public Transportation system with a baby and stroller, visit my blog post here.

What We Did

Day 1

Disneyland Paris: For Stella's 3rd birthday, we decided to take her to Disneyland Paris (DLP) before her big day. As a mini Disney enthusiast, she was thrilled with the experience, and it was everything we had hoped for in terms of the sheer joy she showed throughout the day.

If you're looking for more tips for visiting Disney parks, I have several blogs on the topic that you may find helpful.

When asked on Instagram about the key differences between DLP and the US Disney parks, here's what I've observed:

Overall, the DLP parks are a bit smaller in size compared to their American counterparts. However, the majority of the main attractions are quite similar. One noticeable difference is that the lines at DLP tend to be shorter, with the longest waits topping out at around an hour and a half to two hours.

Another distinction is the pricing and crowds. DLP generally has lower admission costs and sees smaller crowds overall, which can make for a more relaxed and manageable park experience.

That said, I did notice a slight difference in the "Disney magic" factor. While the cast members were professional and helpful, they didn't quite exude the same level of enthusiasm and engagement that is so characteristic of the US Disney parks. The employees seemed more like workers rather than true part of the immersive Disney experience.

One thing we did that I found really helpful - with two toddlers getting around DLP and keeping lightweight around Paris - was bringing a single stroller for travel around Paris and then renting a stroller at the parks. It was €25 for the whole day in both parks and worth the money instead of having to bring a double stroller to Paris or relying on our almost 3 year old to walk all day.

But despite these minor differences, DLP still provided Stella with an absolutely magical 3rd birthday celebration that she'll never forget. If you have the opportunity to visit Disneyland Paris, I'm confident you and your family will have a wonderful time.

Day 2

Arc de Triomphe: This impressive triumphal arch, located at the center of the Place Charles de Gaulle, offers breathtaking views over the city from the top of its 50-meter height. Tickets to climb the stairs to the observation deck cost €13 for adults and €6 for children. While the stairs can be a bit of a workout, the panoramic vistas stretching out over the Champs-Élysées, the Eiffel Tower and beyond are well worth the effort.

Navigating the Arc de Triomphe with a stroller is certainly doable, though you'll want to be prepared. There is an elevator available to transport visitors and their strollers up to the top, but be aware that lines can get quite long, especially during peak tourist seasons. I'd recommend arriving early in the day or late afternoon to avoid the biggest crowds. Overall, the Arc de Triomphe is a must-see landmark that provides an unparalleled perspective of Paris's stunning cityscape.

Champs-Élysées: Starting at the iconic Arc de Triomphe, the Champs-Élysées stretches out as a quintessential Parisian experience. This famous tree-lined avenue extends for nearly 2 kilometers, featuring a myriad of high-end shops, restaurants, cafes, and theaters. However, if you're looking to escape the crowds and explore some of the more authentic Parisian neighborhoods, I'd recommend venturing off the main avenue and into the side streets.

Navigating the Champs-Élysées with a stroller can be manageable, but the wide sidewalks quickly give way to narrower, cobblestone streets as you head into the surrounding neighborhoods. While this may require a bit more maneuvering, it's well worth the effort to discover the charming cafes, local boutiques, and hidden gems that lie just beyond the tourist-heavy Champs-Élysées.

As you make your way down the avenue, you'll be treated to stunning views of the iconic Arc de Triomphe at your back. While this landmark is certainly worth a visit, the real highlights can often be found in the more low-key, less touristy side streets. Here, you'll find ample opportunities to stop, grab a bite to eat at a cozy bistro, and simply immerse yourself in the authentic Parisian atmosphere, away from the crowds.

While the Champs-Élysées offers a quintessential Parisian experience, don't be afraid to venture off the beaten path. The surrounding neighborhoods are full of hidden gems and local gems that are well worth exploring, even with little ones in tow. With a bit of flexibility and a sense of adventure, you're sure to uncover some of the most memorable and authentic aspects of the city.

Coutume Mathis: Speaking of the side streets, this charming specialty coffee shop is located just a short stroll from the bustling Champs-Élysées, offering a welcome respite from the crowds and tourist traps of the main avenue.

As part of the Coutume Paris coffee chain, Coutume Mathis brings the brand's commitment to high-quality, ethically sourced coffee and a distinctly local vibe to this convenient location. As you step through the doors, you'll be greeted by the aroma of freshly roasted coffee beans and the warm, friendly staff. The cafe has a minimalist, Scandinavian-inspired design that creates a serene and comfortable space.

While navigating Coutume Mathis with a stroller requires a bit of maneuvering due to the small size of the cafe, the staff was really kind and very accommodating, and it's well worth the visit to experience the more authentic, local side of Parisian cafe culture.

My order: Iced Americano + the Gourmet Bun (bacon, scrambled eggs, cheddar cheese sauce and mixed salad)

Avenue Montaigne: Again branching off from the Champs-Élysées is Avenue Montaigne, a fancy shopping street with high-end fashion stores and luxury brands. While the Champs-Élysées can be crowded, Avenue Montaigne offers a more peaceful and upscale experience.

As you walk down the tree-lined Avenue Montaigne, the wide sidewalks make it relatively easy to navigate with a stroller. However, the exclusive stores and ritzy atmosphere can feel a bit intimidating, so you'll need to be mindful of the pace and avoid blocking foot traffic.

One of the highlights is window shopping. The storefronts of famous brands like Dior, Chanel, and Louis Vuitton have beautifully curated displays that are fun to admire, even if you're not in the mood to shop. In between the high-end boutiques, you'll find some upscale cafes, restaurants, and hotels. This is a chance to experience a more refined and luxurious side of Parisian life.

Champs de Mars: Navigating the Eiffel Tower and Champs de Mars with a stroller can be a bit of a challenge, especially when faced with the massive crowds that flock to these iconic Parisian landmarks. As one of the most visited sites in the world, the area surrounding the Eiffel Tower can feel overwhelming, with throngs of tourists, street vendors, and even pickpockets looking to take advantage of distracted visitors.

When approaching the Eiffel Tower, it's important to be mindful of the crowds and to keep a tight grip on your belongings. Pickpockets are known to frequent the area, so be extra vigilant and consider keeping your valuables in a secure, hard-to-access location, such as an interior pocket or a cross-body bag. If you are storing stuff in your stroller, don't ever leave it unattended.

Navigating the wide expanse of the Champs de Mars, the lush green space that stretches out in front of the Eiffel Tower, can occasionally be a challenge with a stroller. The grassy areas and pathways can be uneven, making it difficult to push a stroller smoothly. I found it was best to stick to the paved walkways whenever possible.

Despite the crowds and logistical challenges, the Eiffel Tower and Champs de Mars remain must-see destinations for visitors to Paris. To make the most of your experience, consider visiting during off-peak hours, such as early in the morning or late in the evening, when the crowds tend to be smaller.

Eiffel Tower: We actually opted out of going up into the Eiffel Tower this trip. With a baby or stroller, it requires a bit of extra planning, especially when it comes to purchasing tickets. The most convenient option is to buy skip-the-line tickets in advance, which can be done online or through authorized ticket vendors.

When purchasing tickets, be sure to select the option that allows you to access the elevators, as the stairs can be quite challenging with a stroller or young child. The elevators, while very crowded, will provide a much easier and more comfortable way to reach the different viewing platforms.

Upon arrival at the Eiffel Tower, look for the designated "Families and Persons with Disabilities" entrance, which is typically located to the side of the main entrance. This line tends to move more quickly, and the staff is generally more accommodating of those with strollers or small children.

Once inside, you'll want to be mindful of the crowds and keep a close eye on your little one, as the rush of people can be disorienting. Consider ditching the stroller and wearing your baby in a carrier or sling, as this will free up your hands and make navigating the tower's platforms and staircases much easier.

If you're planning to ascend to the higher viewing levels, keep in mind that the elevators can be very crowded and the wait times can be lengthy, particularly during peak hours. Be prepared to potentially wait it out or, if your child becomes fussy, consider heading back down to the lower levels, where the views are still impressive.

Stroll down the Seine: Starting from the Eiffel Tower, we took a stroll along the banks of the Seine River, with the Eiffel Tower as our starting point. This picturesque route takes you past some of the city's most iconic landmarks and offers a delightful way to explore the city with a stroller in tow.

Beginning at the Eiffel Tower, you'll want to navigate the crowds and find the best spot to access the riverfront promenade, known as the Quai Branly. This well-paved pathway is generally stroller-friendly, allowing you to easily push your way along the Seine, taking in the stunning views of the tower and the surrounding cityscape.

If you also take this walk, you'll by the Pont d'Iéna, a grand bridge that offers a perfect vantage point for capturing photographs of the Eiffel Tower. Be mindful of the cobblestones and uneven surfaces, as they can make for a slightly bumpy ride, but the overall path is well-maintained and accessible.

Continuing downstream, the Musée d'Orsay, a former train station that has been transformed into a world-class art museum. While exploring the museum itself may not be practical with a stroller, you can still admire the impressive exterior and the beautiful Beaux-Arts architecture that characterizes this iconic building.

We eventually reached the Passerelle Léopold Sédar Senghor, a pedestrian bridge that offers a convenient way to cross over to the opposite riverbank and the upper bank, as it provides a gradual incline that is much easier to navigate with a stroller compared to some of the steeper staircases in the area.

Crossing the bridge, you'll find yourself in the Jardins des Tuileries, a sprawling and beautifully manicured public garden that stretches out in front of the iconic Louvre Museum.

Throughout your stroll, be mindful of the crowds, especially during peak tourist seasons, and keep a close eye on your belongings to deter any potential pickpockets.

Jardin des Tuileries: The Jardin des Tuileries is an expansive, well-manicured garden that offers a serene and picturesque escape from the bustling city streets. As you explore this iconic Parisian green space, you'll be greeted by a variety of sights and activities that are well-suited for families with a baby and stroller.

The wide, paved pathways throughout the gardens make it easy to navigate with a stroller, allowing you to meander through the different sections at a leisurely pace. One of the highlights for families is the Jardin des Enfants, a designated children's play area that features a range of age-appropriate equipment, such as swings, slides, and sandboxes, providing a safe and engaging space for your little one to explore.

Beyond the dedicated play area, the Jardin des Tuileries offers plenty of other sights and activities to enjoy with your baby. Stroll through the meticulously groomed flowerbeds and admire the vibrant seasonal blooms, which can make for excellent photo opportunities. You may also encounter street performers, such as puppet shows or musicians, that can captivate your child's attention.

When it comes to logistics, the Jardin des Tuileries is generally quite stroller-friendly, with smooth paths and ample space to maneuver. However, do be mindful of the occasional cobblestone or uneven surface, which can make for a slightly bumpier ride. Additionally, keep an eye out for any temporary construction or events that may temporarily obstruct certain areas of the gardens.

If your little one needs a break or a snack, there are several cafés and refreshment stands located within the Jardin des Tuileries, offering a variety of options for both parents and children. These can serve as convenient stops during your exploration of the gardens.

With its well-designed infrastructure and child-friendly amenities, it's an excellent choice for a relaxing and enjoyable outing with a baby and stroller.

Pictures at the Musee du Louvre: Our walk through the Jardin des Tuileries ended at the renowned Louvre Museum. By the time we arrived, we felt a bit tired, as it had been a full day of exploration. With the prospect of the hour-long trip home still ahead, we were ready to wrap up our outing.

Despite our fatigue, we couldn't resist the opportunity to capture a few photographs in front of the Louvre's iconic pyramid and historic façade. While there were public restrooms nearby, in a moment of practicality, we opted to discreetly change our toddler's diaper on the cement blocks commonly used as a backdrop for photos. Truthfully, the convenient surface allowed us to address our child's needs without disruption.

Day 3

Notre Dame de Paris: Unfortunately it is still closed due to the fire in 2019 but the outside of the Notre Dame Cathedral is still incredibly impressive to see, even with the building under reconstruction. The towering Gothic facade, with its ornate stone carvings and iconic towers, makes for a stunning sight in the large plaza in front of the cathedral. This open space provides plenty of room to maneuver a stroller and capture great photos of your little one with the cathedral as the backdrop.

One of the highlights of visiting this area for me has always been indulging in the delectable crepes from the many food stands and vendors lining the plaza and surrounding streets. It's the perfect Parisian snack to enjoy while admiring the architectural grandeur of the Notre Dame.

Another convenience for families is the presence of accessible and clean public restrooms within the gardens in front of the cathedral. This makes it easy to attend to your baby's needs during your time exploring the area.

Beyond just the cathedral itself, the Île de la Cité island where it is located offers a charming neighborhood to wander with your stroller. The quaint streets, historic buildings, and peaceful atmosphere provide a wonderful setting for you and your little one to soak in the ambiance of this iconic Parisian destination.

Croissants at Bakery La Maison d'Isabelle (and a few other places): We took the 5 minute walk to La Maison d'Isabelle who offers flaky, buttery croissants made with traditional methods. You can even enjoy the square further by stopping in to one of the other specialty shops for your wine, cheese, meat, fish, or other needs.

When we arrived we actually needed some coffee and the line for the boulangerie was quite long so we sat down at the cafe next door to the bakery. We ordered some coffee and asked if they offered the croissants from next door or offered their own. They were more than happy to run next door to grab some of the famous croissants skipping the long queue for the sweet treats entirely.

Word of Caution: They do charge more for the croissants for the trouble than if you were to wait in line and get them themselves. You also cannot sit at the tables unless you order something from the cafe.

Other great nearby options include Poilâne, famous for its artisanal breads and croissants, and the cozy Boulangerie Julien.

Here are what I believe to be 5 of the most famous croissants you can find in Paris. These are considered some of the absolute best in the city, revered by Parisians and visitors alike for their exceptional taste and exemplary craftsmanship. Whether you're looking for a traditional butter croissant or a creative twist on the classic, these bakeries deliver quintessential Parisian pastry perfection.

  1. Croissant au Beurre from Boulangerie Poilâne - This iconic Parisian bakery is renowned for its perfectly flaky, buttery croissants made with high-quality ingredients.

  2. Pain au Chocolat from Du Pain et des Idées - The chocolate-filled pastries from this beloved boulangerie are celebrated for their crisp exterior and rich, gooey chocolate center.

  3. Croissant Ordinaire from La Maison d'Isabelle - This classic Parisian croissant is renowned for its traditional flavor and texture.

  4. Croissant Feuilleté from Boulangerie Bakea - Known for its delicate, paper-thin layers, this croissant is a masterclass in French pastry technique.

  5. Croissant à l'Ancienne from Boulangerie Julien - This old-fashioned style croissant has a rustic, artisanal quality that croissant connoisseurs adore.

Pantheon: Just up the road from La Maison d'Isabelle is the Pantheon, another iconic Parisian landmark worth visiting during your time in the city - and it's very family-friendly.

The Pantheon is an excellent destination for those traveling with young children and strollers. The grand neoclassical building features wide, accessible entryways and spacious interior spaces that accommodate even the largest strollers. There are also elevators available to reach the crypt level, making the entire site easily navigable for those with small children in tow.

However, during peak tourism season, it's highly recommended to purchase Pantheon tickets in advance. The site is enormously popular, especially in the summer months, and lines to enter can become quite long. Buying tickets ahead of time allows you to skip the queues and go straight in, saving valuable time and energy - crucial when exploring with little ones.

Once inside, kids will be captivated by the Pantheon's impressive scale and historic significance. The cavernous central chamber, capped by an immense dome, offers ample space for little ones to explore without feeling cramped. And the crypt below, home to the tombs of famous French figures, provides a fascinating and educational experience the whole family can enjoy.

The Pantheon staff is also very welcoming of families. They can provide guidance on the best routes to navigate the site with a stroller, as well as recommendations for keeping young visitors engaged and entertained throughout the tour.

Exploring Saint Germain and the Latin Quarter: The charming neighborhoods of Saint Germain and the Latin Quarter surrounding Notre Dame Cathedral are wonderfully family-friendly, offering plenty of activities and amenities suited for young children.

While strolling through the winding streets, you'll find ample green spaces perfect for little ones to explore. The Jardin du Luxembourg is an expansive public park with playgrounds, pony rides, and a picturesque central fountain that will delight babies and toddlers. Nearby, the tranquil Jardin des Plantes boasts beautiful flower gardens, a small zoo, and even a children's botanical garden - all easily navigable with a stroller.

For refueling, the neighborhoods are dotted with casual cafes and eateries welcoming to families. Many of the more casual cafes and bistros offer high chairs, kids' menus, and quiet corners perfect for nursing or soothing a fussy little one. Grab a bite at cozy spots like Cafe Mabillon or Le Procope, Parisian institutions with a relaxed, family-friendly atmosphere.

Beyond the parks and dining, Saint Germain and the Latin Quarter provide educational enrichment as well. Wander the charming bookstores and artisan shops, pointing out interesting sights and textures for your curious toddler. You can even stop by the Sorbonne, one of the world's oldest and most prestigious universities, to admire the grand architecture.

Wish List

I always like to include a list of things that were on our list but we weren’t able to get to. Sometimes it is due to schedule, location or other factors but all worth mentioning in case you get the chance to add it into your own itinerary!

And truthfully, two days in Paris are just NOT enough time, so there is a lot we missed out on.

Saint-Chapelle: This stunningly ornate 13th-century Gothic chapel is the one I am most upset we missed. The stained glass windows and ornate Gothic architecture can be captivating for children. Its one of my favorites in Paris and I just totally blanked on getting tickets. They are currently selling out days in advance so you will want to make sure to book your tickets ahead of time. It is generally stroller-friendly although a bit more complicated than just climbing some stairs. Entry includes mandatory security screenings with metal detectors. According to the website, strollers must be small and collapsible to fit into the X-ray machines however I saw some people just strolling them through the metal detector.

Food: In general, we didn't prioritize exceptional dining or focus much on the food during this trip. With young children in tow, our meal choices were often dictated more by convenience and practicality rather than seeking out the city's culinary highlights. Beyond the quintessential Parisian staples like crepes and croissants, many of our other meals were more functional than memorable - not bad, but also not particularly great.

The reality is that planning elaborate food-focused outings can be quite challenging when traveling with little ones. Factoring in the kids' schedules, finding restaurants that can accommodate strollers, and carving out the time required to truly savor a meal made it feel a bit overwhelming given our limited time in the city. In hindsight, I wish we had been able to incorporate more of Paris' renowned cuisine into our itinerary. But the sheer logistics of it, combined with the need to keep the kids happy and well-fed, meant that we ended up settling for more casual, readily available options instead of seeking out the city's true gastronomic gems. It's something I regret a bit, as Paris is so renowned for its exceptional food culture. But with the constraints of traveling with young children, it's understandable that our culinary experiences this trip weren't as exceptional as they could have been.

Musee du Louvre: One of the world's largest art museums, with stroller-friendly entrances but a massive size that can be overwhelming. Extensive security measures are in place, including mandatory pass-through metal detectors - THE LINES CAN BE LONG - so advance ticket purchase is strongly advised to expedite the entry process. The Louvre does have some exhibits and activities tailored for families and children, including audio guides and treasure hunt-style tours. The Egyptian antiquities, Galerie des Machines, and Petite Galerie are particularly engaging for kids.

Conciergerie: Medieval palace and former prison of Marie Antoinette with fascinating French history. I personally found this museum really interesting on a previous visit but it may not engage young kids, and stroller access could be limited. Security screening with metal detectors is in place at the entrance, but advance tickets are not essential.

Montmartre: The charming hilltop neighborhood of Montmartre, with its winding streets, lively cafés, and artist's studios, is a quintessential Parisian experience. While the steep inclines and numerous staircases throughout Montmartre can make it quite challenging to navigate with a stroller, the vibrant atmosphere and stunning views make it well worth the effort for many families. There is a funicular near the Sacré-Cœur that can help you take the load off.

If you are a fan of Art Nouveau advertising posters, a visit to the Musée de Montmartre is a cannot-miss attraction. This museum showcases an impressive collection of vintage posters, as well as providing insights into the neighborhood's rich artistic heritage. The museum itself is housed in an 18th-century building with lovely gardens, though the layout and lack of elevators may pose accessibility issues for those with young children in tow.

Sacré-Cœur: Perched atop the Montmartre hill, the Sacré-Cœur Basilica offers breathtaking panoramic views over Paris. Unfortunately, the numerous stairs leading up to the church make it very stroller-unfriendly although there is a funicular nearby that can help a portion of the way. The funicular ticket costs the same as a single-way journey on the metro.

Galeries Lafayette Rooftop: This famous department store's panoramic rooftop terrace provides stunning vistas over the Parisian cityscape. The rooftop is open to the public with access to elevators.

Montparnasse Tower: From the observation deck atop this modern skyscraper, visitors can enjoy 360-degree views stretching out over Paris. However, the Tower's layout and elevators may pose challenges for those with strollers during the peak season. Purchasing tickets in advance is recommended to skip potential lines.

Jardin du Luxembourg: An exceptional destination for families with young children visiting Paris. The expansive, meticulously landscaped gardens offer ample space for kids to run, play, and burn off energy, with delightful features like ornamental fountains, a historic puppet theater, and the quintessential Parisian activity of renting miniature toy sailboats to sail across the central pond. Family-friendly cafés, playgrounds equipped with slides and swings, and stroller-friendly pathways throughout the grounds make the Jardin du Luxembourg an absolute delight for children and a must-visit spot for families exploring the city.

Jardin des Plantes: is another wonderful option for families with young children visiting Paris. As a large, sprawling botanical garden, the Jardin des Plantes provides kids the opportunity to immerse themselves in the natural world, with diverse plant life, landscaped greenery, and shaded pathways perfect for strolling. While there aren't dedicated children's exhibits, the vibrant colors, interesting textures, and lush foliage throughout the gardens can captivate young imaginations. Families can also explore the small zoo onsite, home to a variety of animals including pandas, llamas, and exotic birds. Though lacking the playgrounds and activities found at the Jardin du Luxembourg, the serene, educational atmosphere of the Jardin des Plantes still makes it delightful.

Batobus Hop-on Hop-off River Cruise: This relaxing boat service provides a convenient way to see many of Paris' iconic landmarks from the Seine River. The boats have good stroller accessibility, and advance tickets are not essential, though I highly suggest purchasing to skip the long queues.


Looking back on our whirlwind 3-day adventure in Paris, it's clear that traveling with a 2-year-old and a 1-year-old presented its fair share of unique challenges. Between navigating the crowds and logistics of a day at Disneyland Paris, and trying to experience the highlights of the city center while keeping the little ones happy and rested, there were certainly some stressful moments.

Though tiring at times, this trip has solidified our family's love of travel and our ability to adapt, make the most of each moment, and find joy in the simple pleasures. We will absolutely need to revisit Paris again someday, sans strollers, to truly do justice to all it has to offer. But this experience has left us with a lifetime of happy memories and a deep appreciation for the challenges and rewards of adventuring with our little ones.


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