Things to do in Paris with Kids – Jardin des Plantes: La Galérie de L’Évolution

paris with a toddler

So our son, when asked what he wanted to do in Paris, naturally responded, “I want to see dinosaurs”. Well of course he did! You may think to yourself that Paris is not an easy journey with kids. Restaurants don’t seem too child friendly and the kids are bound to get bored going from museum to museum, no? Despite this, though that has to be in the minds of quite a number of parents (especially toddlers), websites like Mama Loves Paris, among others are trying to convince us otherwise. There are plenty of things to do in Paris with kids. And you know what? It doesn’t have to be ONLY for the kids – you may very well enjoy it too. How about that?

You already know that your toddlers will love the Parc de la Villette. Especially great when the weather is perfect in Paris but what about when it’s not so sunny?

You’ve probably heard that sometimes it rains in Paris, right? This was one of those occasions and going to a museum seemed like the perfect antidote to the dreary weather.

My son wanted dinosaurs and dinosaurs he would have. Of course, mommy and daddy should have paid better attention, as we intended to go to the Natural History Museum but turns out that’s just not being specific enough as this groups various museums in Paris under the same umbrella such as the Jardins des Plantes, The Musée de l’Homme, two zoos, and a paleontology museum. You can discover all the museums here. We ended up at the Galérie de l’Évolution in the Jardin des Plantes. And I’m putting this up there as one of the 10 exciting things to do in Paris with kids – because it is!

I love the Jardin des Plantes. On a beautiful sunny day in Paris, and even this overcast, partly rainy day, it is a beautiful sight to behold. Another one of Paris’ manicured spaces so perfectly well maintained. While I used to live near here as a student, I never spent as much time as I should have here, just meandering or people-watching or visiting the exhibit halls and museums. But as a newbie mom, I am always keen to find something to grab my little one’s attention. If you are a lover of natural history, this should be on your bucket list of things to do in Paris.

Paris with a toddler

As I said we made the error of going to the Galérie de l’Evolution which is just one of the many parts of the huge Muséum National de l’Histoire Naturelle (Natural History Museum). We should actually have headed to the Galérie de Paléontologie et d’Anatomie Comparé if we really wanted to see dinosaurs but thankfully Remi didn’t seem to notice our blunder. Whew!

The Galérie de l’Evolution takes you through a discovery of animals from both land and sea. While there were a few pre-historic remains, it was primarily about modern creatures big and small.

There is a children’s gallery as well that you can include in your visit for an additional fee. This gallery serves as a discovery zone for children big and small to learn about the habitats and behaviors of various fauna.

The models are impressive to behold. All are life-size.

Paris with a toddler

We ended our day with a lovely Italian lunch within short walking distance from the park (I’ll give the name and info below)

While the website is only in French, the information within the museum was offered in at least English if not also German.

There are useful lockers both big and small to store things you don’t want to tote around. You just need a 1 euro coin to put in the door and it will be returned to you after you return the key. Strollers are allowed within the museum but I’d say if you can avoid using them you would be better off.

Useful info:
Galerie de l’Evolution
Open every day but Tuesday from 10 am – 6 pm
Closed December 25, January 1st, and May 1st

PRICE: 7-13 euros

Where we ate afterward. Turns out they have 3 restaurants in Paris. Who knew?
Tesoro D’Italia 
65 Boulevard Saint-Marcel, 75013
Metro: Les Gobelins
Tel: +33 (0)1 43 31 17 64

More things to do in Paris with Kids: Our Kids’ Cooking Classes in Paris.

“Article modified on 13 June, 2022”

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