|Subject: Re: Paris for kids|
Pat, my daughter-in-law and I took the 11 yr old granddaughter to Paris last April. She was enthralled and thanked her mother over and over for taking her; she asked on the return trip to the airport that we be quiet so she could soak up her last minutes of the city. I had given her the DK Eyewitnesses guide to Paris (bought second hand) because it had more drawings and photos of the sites than most, so she could have a say in what we visited. She is artistic and even had her own list of the paintings she wanted to see at the d'Orsay.
We went to the Louvre on Weds night so she could get right up to the Mona Lisa; there were only two other people there. She seemed to enjoy Montmartre--the church (have them climb to the top of Sacre Couer, that will tire them out), the artist square (be prepared to be harrassed when you had cute kids with you), the mimes and the musicians who happened to be there that day. We had to drag her out of the Montmartre cemetery; she was fascinated by the statuary and tombs so unlike ours at home - the boys might really enjoy this or the one in Montparnasse which has bird and cat sculptures on the tombs. They would probably enjoy the bird market at Notre Dame (on Sunday, I think, without checking my notes). The 7 yr old might want to ride the donkeys in the Champs de Mars or Parc Ranelagh near the Marmottan for Monet for the adults; the 10 yr old would probably want no part of it! The metro and buses fascinated her; she lives in a car- based neighborhood. For that yuck experience, find a Turkish toilet - Katie decided to wait! The street self-cleaning bathrooms are fun; just make sure the boys are out before the spray comes on! Paristory is a good overall, one hour show for the history of Paris (near the Opera Garnier). Take them to both locations for the Statue of Liberty copies - Luxembourg Gardens and the Allee des Cygnes (there was some profanity sprayed painted on it last April-the war had just begun; may be cleaned by now). There is the Arenes de Lutece, where they can pretend to be gladiators or watch the kids playing soccer. And the taxidermist on rue de Bac (read chapter in Paris to the Moon) with a horse in the window. There is the art squat at 59 rue Rivoli; junky, messy, funky artistic studios, again some work is a bit profane. Katie stuck her toes in the Seine on one of the quais. The canal boat ride is three hours, but goes through several locks and ends at the Parc Villette with various play equipment. There were other things on Grandmom's list we didn't do - the carousel, magic and wax museums, etc. I envy you - I am returning in a few weeks, but with just another adult - I wish I could see it again through my granddaughter's eyes. Beth W., Washington, DC