trip to France with family

My daughter has asked us to go on a trip with them to France. They want to do 3 days in Paris, then head over to Normandy - then they will head south to Nice to visit friends, and my husband and I will finish out the trip by ourselves. My husband and I have been to Paris 2 times and Normandy once. Took the Battlebus tour with Dale Booth which was fantastic. But, I have no idea what 16, 14 and 10 year olds would like to do in Paris and if Normandy would be something of interest. We will ask them, of course, but wondering about other's experiences with children. Also, when we leave them in Normandy (if that's where we go), where do my husband and I go? I was thinking perhaps north of Paris to some of the WWI sites. I'm just starting the investigation but thought someone might have some ideas based on your experiences. Thanks.

Posted by Nancy
Costa Mesa, CA, USA
160 posts

Took our kids when they were 10 and 12 and they loved Paris and Normandy! Highlights in Paris included climbing to the top of Notre Dame and the Eiffel Tower, visiting the Musee de l'Armee, the catacombs and eating!!!
As for Normandy, my kids liked this the most - loved the Battlebus tour as well. My advice would be to give the kids some of the guidebooks and let them come up with some ideas. As for what you and your husband do afterwards you've got lots of choices!! You could go down to Provence or to the Loire - both are easy to get to via train and have lots to offer!

Posted by Terry kathryn
Ann Arbor, Mi
3287 posts

Took two of my grandsons and they were 14 and 16 and each one loved Normandy and Paris was their favorite city (2 different trips) and they have both been to other European cities... and much to my surprise Paris topped the list. We did the typical stuff but also just wandering around and stopping at lots of cafes and sitting by the river was what they really enjoyed. One spent the night on MSM...another highlight. As for the two of you, if you have not been to Provence, that is where I would go. Take the train to Avignon, get a car and enjoy the region.

Posted by Christina
New York, NY, 10025
365 posts

If you have not been to Mont Saint-Michel, go when you are in Normandy. When I was a kid, the idea of the place fascinated me. See if you can time it so that you can take one of the guided tours of the mud flats. I didn't get to but I bet the kids would like it.

Posted by pat
victoria, Canada
9066 posts

I have taken my 11 yr old and 13 yr old to Paris ( among some other places) and they had tons of things they enjoy. Invalids Army Museum , Notre Dame Towers, The Catacombs( my 13 yr old found this one while doing his mandatory research.. I make my kids contribute to itineraries!) Eiffel Tower, the Louvre and ORsay( yes, my 13 yr old skateboarding son ENJOYED the Louvre,, my daughter preferred the Orsay) Daytrip to Versailles ,, we also visited Peirrefonds and Chantilly. I can also suggest Fat Tire Bike Tours ( yes, easy enough for you I promise) and a daytrip to Provins ( a world heritage site, look it up!)

Posted by Diane
New York, NY, USA
163 posts

Just came back from Paris and Normandy with my 16 yr old son - who loved both Paris and Normandy. We stayed in Bayeaux for one night. My son is an urban kid so I let him go on his own to some of the art museums in Paris, He also enjoyed the D Day museum in Bayeaux and all the DDay associated sites.

Posted by SUSAN
93 posts

From Paris to Normandy, my husband and I went to Honfleur - a beautiful town right at the junction of the Seine and the Atlantic with beautiful walking path along the shore looking over at Le Havre. It has wonderful restaurants, shops, playgrounds, parks, etc. WE stayed at Le Fond De La Cour B&B (wonderful !). We took a 15 minute drive to Trouville and walked the beach, then continued on to Deauville, very upscale beachy community - great shopping and restaurants also. We then did the Route de cidre, stopping at local places to sample the Calvados - we GPS'd the route to Beuvron En Auge - one of France's "most beautiful villages." Google Honfleur.....I'd go back in a heartbeat and you and your husband will enjoy it. Somewhere different, not too far from Paris - two hours and easy drive. Enjoy your trip !

Posted by Bryan Cribbs
Urbana, IL, USA
7 posts

With that age group, I'd consider visiting the Cité des Sciences, (in NE Paris). I visited this place by myself in early August 2103 (because I'm a science geek) and I had a great time as an adult, but many exhibits were obviously geared towards children and teenagers. It is mostly accessible to english speakers (some exhibits did not have english translations).