Paris is one of my favorite cities. As a college student, I spent my Junior year exploring the streets on foot, discovering hidden nooks and crannies. When my daughter was 10 and we were trying to decide on a place for her 5th grade trip with Mom, Paris was the natural source. After all, she does share her name with a Metro stop and a church. Going to Paris with a 10 year old is different from going there in your 20's. With a little creativity and a ton of research, I planned a trip that was memorable for both of us.
Kids Love Food!
Paris is full of iconic foods. We didn't go to any of the high-end restaurants, but we still had fun exploring the food scene. Our first morning, we went to Angelina for the famous Chocolat Chaud and a Montblanc pastry. While walking to the Eifel Tower, we stopped off to try the snacks at a street market. When our feet were tired from walking we would sneak into a cafe, watch the world around us and try some snacks. My daughter ended the trip loving the Croque Monsieur, just a grilled ham and cheese. We made a point to try a few well-known places and specialties, but we also just explored.
Scavenger Hunts, the Secret to Exploring
The Louvre is huge and crowded. You know you are near Winged Victory or the Mona Lisa by the current of the crowds pushing you to them. That said, I love the Louvre. I spent every afternoon there for half of 1995. However, you are going to need some help exploring. Paris Muse offers private family tours that incorporate games into the tour. It allows you to explore the rich beauty of the Museum beyond the more well known exhibits.
Also check out ThatMuse ThatMuse offers self guided scavenger hunts throughout different museums and different Parisian neighborhoods. It was a great way to explore and my daughter to play a game.
Find Special Experiences
These experiences were the most memorable for my daughter. We had a layover in Copenhagen and had dinner with a Danish family. In Paris, we took a farmer's market tour with a chef and cooked lunch after. The chef showed us the different types of tomatoes and mushrooms. To this day, my daughter still knows the number of different varieties of tomatoes. Our afternoon inspired a love of cooking in my daughter. After lunch, he gave us recommendations for the best pastries in Paris.
In planning the trip, we did enjoy the well-known sites, but we found a way to make the experience more engaging for both of us. From exploring the Louvre to visiting the chateaux of the Loire, we had a trip that we will both remember. During trip, I could take a little break from parenting and enjoy spending time and exploring with my daughter!