"Paris is always a good idea" : Groovy and her mum Marisa fully agree. Read all about their special bond with the City of Lights and numerous adventures in the capital. Find inspirations on what to visit, where to shop, where to stay and where to eat for your next family trip to Paris with children.
Paris : a city dear to our hearts
I have been madly in love with Paris since I first visited at the wide-eyed age of 22. The beauty, romance and glamour of the city have always entranced me. In recent years, however, Paris has taken on new depth and meaning.
When my daughter Groovy turned four (she is now eight) we began taking regular Mommy/Daughter weekend trips, slowly exploring the city together. I am rediscovering old haunts through her eyes as well as exploring new places. Paris offers an endless source of experiences and has so many hidden gems.
My daughter has a real sense of curiosity and is always on the lookout for wonder. This makes our adventures all the more fun. For us Paris is a constant moveable feast of art, beauty and food.
Our Parisian traditions
We usually travel for the weekend since there is a perfect direct flight on Friday afternoon from Palma de Mallorca, where we live, that returns on Sunday evening. This allows us a full two days in Paris.
On Saturdays, we like to stick to our favourite traditions and then spend the second day exploring a new neighborhood going to an exhibit or attraction we have never visited before.
We have stayed in different parts of the city, but our favorite place to stay is at Hôtel Bel Ami in the Saint Germain des Prés neighbordhood on the Left Bank. We start the day with breakfast at the hotel (or possibly Café de Flore sitting outdoors watching the city wake up and soaking in the Parisian ambiance).
We then visit the Musee d’Orsay or Musee de l’Orangerie to admire the Impressionist works of art. Groovy was very proud to wear her Monet inspired dress for the occasion. It is slightly hidden under the coat but you can catch a glimpse of the floral print.
We then make our way into the Jardin des Tuileries for a walk. The carousel there is our favorite in Paris, and Groovy always makes a friend or two on the playground just next to it.
For lunch we like to head back over the river to Saint Germain. Being Americans living abroad, I am not ashamed to admit that our favorite lunch destination on our first day is Ralph’s.
After lunch we head over to the Jardin du Luxembourg to play with the wooden boats and visit the incredible playground there.
Then it is, of course, a short walk to your beautiful (and our favorite) shop - L’Ile aux Fées. It’s a must for every visit and something we greatly look forward to. I will never forget the first time we visited and how special you made Groovy feel.
We also came with some of our dearest friends who are almost sisters to Groovy! We had to get matching dresses of course.
My niece, Delphine, just got to experience this for the first time as well, and my sister said she was over the moon. Your dresses have become tradition with our family and friends.
Groovy loves visiting you and discovering the personalised welcome message which always awaits her.
She also loves the tradition you have started of letting her pick a quote and writing it on the window to inspire bypassers. And of course, she enjoys picking out a new dress.
After a wonderful visit to your boutique we always head to the children’s department at Le Bon Marché (the best in the world, in my opinion) and then back to the hotel for a rest.
On Saturday evening, we always go to Hotel Costes for dinner, the table by the fireplace is our favorite.
Sunday involves exploring the city and doing new things. We always appreciate the information you send us on new or special exhibits and seasonal activities. The Frida Kahlo exhibit at the Fashion Museum Palais Galliera was spectacular, as was the Dior Gallery.
This most recent trip in March we explored Montmartre in the morning with visits to the Sacré-Coeur Basilica and the Love Wall followed by lunch at Chez Prune on the Canal Saint-Martin to search for Kylie the Crocodile. It is the character from one of Groovy’s favorite books based in Paris by Oliver Gee & Lina Nordin Gee. We did not find her on this trip, despite walking the length of the canal to the Seine... We will have to plan another trip and search even better next time!
We are already dreaming of our next visit to see you in the Fall, and talking about the places we wish to go. Planning is part of the fun of these adventures together! The Palais Garnier, hopefully for a performance, is definitely next on our list…
A final tip for families travelling to Paris
My advice would be to not plan too much. The beauty of Paris is walking along the Seine, spending time in the parks (and on the many carousels) and people watching in the many amazing cafés.
To receive personalised tips for your next trip to Paris, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org