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Best things for teenagers to do and see in Paris?

We are taking our two teenage sons to Paris in a couple weeks.  We have been there a couple times and know what we like to see and do but would appreciate some travel tips regarding teenagers. They are active, athletic boys who also appreciate art, architecture, music and good food.

7 Answers

answered by
Larry from Hopewell Junction

If they're into movies and movie history, they should check out Cinémathèque Française, in the Bercy quartier. The Philharmonie de Paris 2 has a museum of music, with exhibitions in all genres. A trip to the roof of the Tour Montparnasse has the best view of Paris.  And the George Pompidou Centre usually has something cool going on. There's the Catacombes de Paris too.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Cinémathèque Française (attraction)
  2. Philharmonie de Paris 2 (attraction)
  3. Tour Montparnasse (attraction)
  4. George Pompidou (attraction)
  5. Catacombes de Paris (attraction)
2 thanks

answered by
John from Carlsbad (California)

La Plage Parisienne  or Plage-Paris) is set up on certain parts of the banks of the Seine during the summer, and might be interesting for you sons.  It will be hot in August, and there are fountains and some small pools to cool off, and at the La Villette location, Kayaks, pedal boats, sailboats, and canoes, which I think are free during the day.  There are also places to just relax and cafes to eat and have a glass of wine for the adults.  There are also free concerts in venues at or near the "beaches."

Art in Paris is everywhere, but there is a limit to how much you can see in one trip.  The Louvre can be overwhelming.  If you decide to go there, get tickets or a pass in advance and have a good idea of what you want to see.  You might have your kids go online and see what interests them, and then tailor your visit to that.  The Musée d'Orsay is a good choice, too.  I'm guessing they would like the Impressionists there.  L'Orangerie has the large format water lilies Monet painted toward the end of his life, which are stunning and don't take a lot of time to see.  If they are interested, a trip to Giverny! Jardins de monet, where they were painted, is a nice day trip.  If they are really interested,  Musée Marmottan Monet has a super collection and is not too big.  The Musee Rodin building is closed for renovation, but you can still see the gardens, which have many works scattered all over, including the iconic Le Penseur.

You almost have to take them to the Eiffel Tower.  Get tickets in advance so you don't wait in line.  Alternatively, have them walk up as far as they want, and they will sleep well that night.  Other opportunities for exercise would be walking up to the towers of Notre Dame Cathedral and walking up to the top of the Arc de Triomphe.  Less strenuous good views are available at the Tour Montparnasse (the old joke is that it has the best view because you don't see it from the top), and the La Grande Arche de La Defense, which has an elevator and a great view down to the Louvre and has stunning modern architecture all around it.  

Traveling through the waterways of Paris is fun for everyone.  You can do a cruise on the Seine with or without lunch or dinner.  If you don't want to do that, at least take them on a couple trips on the Batobus to get the perspective from the river.  One of my favorite cruises is the one down the Canal Saint Martin and along part of the Seine.

Have a great trip!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. La Plage Parisienne (restaurant)
  2. La Villette (attraction)
  3. The Louvre (attraction)
  4. Musée d'Orsay (attraction)
  5. L'Orangerie (restaurant)
  6. Giverny! Jardins de monet (attraction)
  7. Musée Marmottan Monet (attraction)
  8. Musee Rodin (attraction)
  9. Le Penseur (attraction)
  10. Eiffel Tower (attraction)
  11. Notre Dame Cathedral (attraction)
  12. Arc de Triomphe (attraction)
  13. Tour Montparnasse (attraction)
  14. La Grande Arche de La Defense (attraction)
  15. Canal Saint Martin (attraction)
1 thanks

answered by
Simon from Paris

It depends on what your children like. If you're gonna be around 28th august, there is a great rock festival, Festival Rock en Seine, or maybe you can tried a party boat, like the Le Nix Nox

For restaurants I can recomend you Chez Gladines which has great french food, or Chez Boris St Honoré which is a super good steak house. If you like greek food Le Daraton its just the best greek restaurant in paris


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Festival Rock en Seine (attraction)
  2. Le Nix Nox (attraction)
  3. Chez Gladines (restaurant)
  4. Chez Boris St Honoré (restaurant)
  5. Le Daraton (restaurant)
1 thanks

answered by
Haleigh from Paris

Hey Melissa! Lucky first trip to Paris was as a teen and it changed my life...I ended up moving here! If they are at all into style, fashion, cool gadgets etc the store Colette in the Rue Saint Honore is a cool stop to check out where the young and hip people in Paris are shopping. As Abigail said as well, they would love the Marais as if there something for everyone there in terms of shopping and dining. Also a very cool spot appreciated by the younger crowd in Paris is Canal Saint Martin. Its also nice to see the scenic but less frequented corner of Paris to see how the younger crowd lives and hangs out in Paris. If they are old enough to go out by themselves (18 in France) then I would recommend the Wanderlust. I would understand if you don't want to send them out at night on their own, but in the afternoon Wanderlust also hosts amazing hangouts with live DJ's on their terrace along the Seine for people to sun and listen to good music. Lastly, the banks of the Seine between Eiffel and Musée d'Orsay are a really fun dynamic stroll. There are tons of little places to eat and drinks along the way, sit and hangout, and also tons of sports that are public, like badminton, skating, and more that you can all enjoy together. Hope that helps!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Colette (attraction)
  2. Canal Saint Martin (attraction)
  3. Wanderlust (attraction)
1 thanks

answered by
Hoyt from New York City

As you likely already know walking around Paris is half the fun, and some great destinations include Montmartre, the "little" Statue of Liberty, the Roman ruins below Notre Dame Cathedral and the Musee Rodin (which includes a fantastic garden you can walk). They might also like restaurant Derrière.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Montmartre (attraction)
  2. Notre Dame Cathedral (attraction)
  3. Musee Rodin (attraction)
  4. Derrière (restaurant)
1 thanks

answered first by
Abigail from Paris

Hi Melissa,

If you have good weather while you’re here, it might be fun to do a guided bike tour of Paris (ex. Fat Tire Bike Tours). If you prefer to discover the city on your own, you could pick an area and opt for a self-guided walking tour. Plenty of itineraries are available in guide books or online. I quite like the Ile Saint-Louis, Quartier Du Maraisand Saint-Germain-des-Prés.

One restaurant that is great for families or a group is Flam's. It’s a casual chain with several locations in Paris (I assure you, it’s good!) where you can enjoy all you can eat Flammekueche, a delicious specialty from the Alsace region.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Ile Saint-Louis (attraction)
  2. Quartier Du Marais (attraction)
  3. Saint-Germain-des-Prés (neighborhood)
  4. Flam's (restaurant)
1 thanks

answered by
Edna from Paris

Hi Melissa, there are some great suggestions here! I would like to add your teenagers might enjoy the Treasure Hunt AThe Louvre, known as THATLou, which is a fantastic way to see the museum and learn more about it in an engaging way (and it only takes 1.5 hours, instead of all day)!

I personally don't enjoy museums but have gained a much greater appreciation for the Louvre and all of its masterpieces after taking three THATLous! 

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. The Louvre (attraction)

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