Family visit to the Cité de la Musique, Philharmonie de Paris

Things to do in Paris Region with family when it’s raining

Check out all the best places to take your family out when it rains. From museums and cinemas to gaming rooms, the Paris Region’s indoor facilities offer just as wide a choice as for outdoor activities. What’s on the programme?
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  3. Things to do in Paris Region with family when it’s raining

The swallows are flying low and the skies of Paris are clouding up. It’s going to be a rainy day. Rain might be better than a heatwave, but it can be just as discouraging. Were you looking forward to a family day out in the capital? Thought you had it all planned? Time for Plan B. This is Paris Region, where there are plenty of back-up solutions. Instead of digging out your wellies to brave the weather, opt for indoor activities like cultural tours, games, sports or something more original. The choice is yours.

Family fun at the museum

When the weather disappoints, the museums are your best allies to help you forget the rain. Paris has plenty of these, and the range of topics covered is even greater if you include those of the entire Paris Region. But remember, if it’s a family outing, you’ll need to cater for everyone’s tastes. This is practically mission impossible when your teenager is interested in nothing but video games, the little one is mad about space and dinosaurs, and you’re more into contemporary art. Rest assured, some of our museums have the amazing power to please everyone, with activities suitable for both adults and children.

The Paradox Museum to make you dizzy

You’ll need to get your brain in gear before visiting the Paradox Museum. This museum is more like a maze of disconcerting experiences that takes you deep into the world of illusion. The tour is packed with interactive features that get the whole family involved. It is perfect for teenagers. In a mix of science and magic, you’ll try to unveil the secrets behind the museum’s visual tricks!

Paradox Museum
Paradox Museum Paris

Meet your idols at the Grévin Museum

You’ll see more celebrities at the Grévin Museum than on the red carpet of the Cannes Film Festival. This is definitely an experience for your bucket list. For families, the visit soon turns into a photo shoot. A great way to add wonderful memories to the family album. Parents will enjoy meeting General de Gaulle, the children will get to see their heroine Ladybug, and teenagers will be able to take selfies with Mbappé.

Musée Grévin
Grévin Paris

A stone’s throw from the Grévin Museum is a most original shop that should spark your children’s curiosity. For over 50 years now, Pain d’épices in the Passage Jouffroy has specialised in vintage toys and games. Children and parents alike will want to linger for hours in this magical world.

Playing with notes at the children’s Philharmonic society

Music stimulates our senses, hearts and emotions, which makes it the most intergenerational form of art there is. This is reflected at the Philharmonie de Paris, a museum and auditorium rolled into one and created with children in mind: The children’s Philharmonic society is a venue designed specially for 4-10-year-olds. In this interactive facility, families can explore the world of sound and music through a variety of activities. Who knows, your children may even find their calling.

Enfant jouant les chefs d&%2523039;orchestre devant des instrument à la philharmonie des enfants%252C Paris
The Philharmonie des Enfants

The Paris Philharmonic society can be found in the parc de la Villette. If the rain stops for a little while, take the opportunity to enjoy the coolness of the park. Besides the play areas and multiple cultural facilities, various events are held here all year round.

There’s always something to learn at the museum

“Museums are boring.” If there’s one cliché that museums don’t deserve, this is it. For many years, they’ve been striving to transform their exhibitions into immersive and interactive experiences. And some of them have succeeded hands down.

A museum that really takes off

Le Bourget Air and Space Museum retraces the history of the conquest of infinity and beyond. From unconvincing prototypes of flying machines to the Ariane space rockets, find out how much humans have achieved in their quest for the stars. Try the flight simulator, an absolute must for the children. The museum also features a planetarium. Ready to take the family travelling through space?

Boeing 747 de nuit au musée de l&%2523039;air et de l&%2523039;espace
Museum of Air and Space

A museum that makes you like science

Do your children grumble about their biology and chemistry lessons? The Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie should change their minds. This is the most innovating of all Paris museums. A cross between a museum and a mad scientist’s laboratory, the Cité des Sciences is a place for experimentation. Its Cité des Enfants is a fun area set aside for children aged 2 to 7 years. It aims to make science more approachable through various amusing experiments.

Cité des Sciences et de l&%2523039;Industrie
Cité des sciences et de l'industrie

A museum that takes you through time

Do you find history boring? Then try living it! Through various immersive activities, the Cité de l’Histoire transports you back in time to General de Gaulle’s office, Napoleon’s tent or behind the scenes of Notre-Dame de Paris. Shows and technology accompany your trip through time. And this is definitely a trip to enjoy as a family.

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The Cité de l'Histoire

A museum that brings out your artistic talent

There’s a French saying that says tastes and colours are not to be discussed! But the Musée en Herbe invites children to do just that. The art exhibitions and creative workshops will unleash their imagination. And as parents, you’ll have just one question on your mind by the time you leave: on which wall to display your offspring’s work of art?

Musée en Herbe
Musée en Herbe

A museum for experimentation

Last on our list in this category is a museum that combines science, digital culture and sustainable development: Exploradome. Here, it is forbidden to not touch. Which is great news for children! And a huge relief for parents. After a multitude of spectacular experiments, you’ll leave this museum with your head full of fresh knowledge and fabulous memories. An adventure suitable for children aged 4 years and up.

Exploradôme
Exploradôme

Dive with the family to 20,000 leagues under the sea

While it rains on the parks and zoos of the Paris Region, take shelter in the alternative universe of the aquarium that will also have the children gazing in wonder.

One aquarium, two ambiances

In the heart of the city, in the Trocadéro gardens to be more precise, the Aquarium de Paris houses Europe’s largest collection of jellyfish. If you’re not convinced by the bewitching ballet of these prehistoric cnidarians, try the aquarium’s visite nocturne. The subdued atmosphere only adds to the magic of the seabed.

Aquarium de Paris - enfant qui caresse des poissons dans un bassin
Aquarium de Paris

Paris’ first aquarium

Paris has another aquarium further from the city centre, the Aquarium tropical du Palais de la Porte Dorée, on the edge of the bois de Vincennes. Historically speaking, this is the capital’s first aquarium. In addition to the species typically seen in aquariums, this one also has crocodiles and alligators wallowing in a terrarium. These animals are even more scary than the sharks, and kids find them sensational

Fishy attractions

The last aquatic attraction takes us a little further out of Paris, to the Disneyland theme park. Or rather, its vicinity. Instead of trying to escape the rain on the Crush’s Coaster, why not go and see Nemo in the flesh? At the Aquarium Sea Life, expect to meet penguins, sharks, octopuses and other inhabitants of the seabed.

King Penguin
Aquarium Sea Life

Take the family to explore the world without leaving the Paris Region

The grand hothouses of the Jardin des Plantes

Shelter from the rain and cold in this world where vegetation rules. The garden’s hothouses contain three different habitats: tropical forest, desert and the varying landscape of New Caledonia. The fourth hothouse retraces the history of plants. This visit is a world tour in its own right!

The children’s gallery

On the first floor of the Muséum d’Histoire Naturelle, the children’s gallery offers 6 to 12-year-olds a chance to learn about our planet’s biodiversity. The amusing educational tour will teach them just how amazing nature is, but also how vulnerable it can be.

The Butterfly House

In this superb equatorial jungle, around forty species of butterfly dance and twirl among the vegetation. Children love visiting this hothouse, one of the 30 most popular tourist attractions of Paris Region.

Outings to enjoy as a family

A host of indoor activities

Among the most popular leisure activities to do when it’s raining in Paris, the cinema is near the top of the list. From the neighbourhood cinema to the biggest silver screen in Paris, the choice is huge. Check out all the latest releases, you may find there’s a new live-action Disney film showing.

Don’t like the idea of spending hours doing nothing? Then why not try the patinoire or a karaoke session? If you’re worried about falling or singing out of tune, tell yourself it doesn’t hurt to make a fool of yourself now and again. What counts is sharing quality time with the family.

All the rage during the 80s and 90s, amusement arcades went into decline with the arrival of game consoles. But vintage is back with a bang and this type of recreation is the latest trend. The Tête dans les nuages arcade is much like the ones we remember but with an even wider diversity of machines and attractions.

Family activities with a difference

Prefer to avoid cinemas and shopping centres, which are often crowded when it rains? To keep the whole family occupied, try a more unusual experience: toute votre famille, tentez une expérience qui sorte de l’ordinaire :

Rex Studios
Leisures
Want to get behind the screen? To unravel the mysteries of film making? Come to Rex Studios in the heart of Paris to immerse yourself in the world of the 7th Art… Action!
Homme travaillant le chocolat à l'atelier C, Paris
Atelier C
Unusual Gastronomy
There are many Parisian chocolate temples, but only the chef of Atelier C holds the French record for the largest chocolate egg! Now is the time to create !
Visite en famille de l'Opéra Garnier
A family outing to the Palais Garnier
Art & culture Strolls
Dive into the magical world of dance and opera in the centre of Paris with an independent family visit to the Garnier opera.
iFLY Paris
IFly Paris
Leisures
Ever wanted to fly without stepping foot on a plane? Then head to IFly Paris for an exhilarating indoor skydiving experience, suitable for beginners and experts alike!

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  • Copyright image: William Beaucardet