Cité des Sciences et de l'Industrie
As well as putting on a profusion of events and temporary exhibitions, this landmark cultural site within the Parc de La Villette offers permanent exhibitions on space and sound. The Cité des Sciences's shows and films take the visitors into another world at the Planétarium. There is cinema on a grand scale on the 1,000 m² hemispherical screen at the Géode, and the Argonaute, a real submarine from the 1950s. The Cité des Enfants attracts kids aged 2-7 and 5-12, whilst the Carrefour Numérique appeals to those who are older.
Bonus: Afterwards there are plenty of surprises in store in the park.
Palais de la Découverte
Get to know everything about earthquakes and volcanoes, flavours, climate change, the chemistry of light. Understand animal communication. Analyze a crime scene in a setting worthy of a forensic lab. Observe celestial phenomena from any point of the Earth, at any point in time past or future … All this, and much more too, in the different galleries and Planetarium at the Palais de la Découverte.
Bonus: During the course of your visit, science educational staff carry out experiments that are often quite spectacular, give presentations and organize workshops.
Parc zoologique de Paris
The 80-year-old Paris zoo has been totally transformed and is better than ever! It is made up of landscapes that recreate the native biotopes of the animals. The visit of the Parc zoololgique de Paris is now conceived as a journey through 5 regions of the world and 16 natural environments. 180 species live here under stringent conditions of comfort.
Bonus: Workshops and guided tours adapted to all levels (from kindergarten to high school) address issues such as endangered species, food, classification, the diversity of natural environments, relations between human beings ...
Cité de l’architecture et du patrimoine
What do an abbey, a train station and a skyscraper have in common? They are all a part of French architectural heritage, and it is the worthy mission of the Cité de l'architecture et du patrimoine within the palace of Chaillot to familiarize you with them … And get you to appreciate them. And to do this, three galleries roll out a saga from the Middle Ages to the present day. And if it is not yet the case, programming featuring young architectural talent will eventually give the visitor a passion for architecture.
Bonus: Special visits with a member of staff, lecture-visit, storytelling, sketching or workshop visit for young audiences and school groups.
Grande galerie de l’Évolution du Muséum national d’histoire naturelle
In a monumental space emblematic of the 19th century, the Grande Galerie de l'Évolution presents 9,500 stuffed specimens including several star exhibits, like Siam the Asian elephant or Kiki the giant tortoise. Revamped in sound and light to celebrate its 20th anniversary in 2014, it takes the visitor through marine, land and aerial worlds to fully appreciate the diversity of living species, understand the evolution of life, and the role of man in this evolutionary process.
Bonus: By using fun tools, the Galerie des Enfants raises the awareness of children aged 6-12 about biodiversity and environmental issues and challenges.
Musée de l’Homme
Reasons to go to the Musée de l'Homme: Because it reopened in 2015 after six years of renovation work, with a complete makeover of its exhibition spaces, and the launch of an original cultural and scientific project. ‘Who are we? Where do we come from? Where are we going? These three questions make up the visit, along with the answers to them that combine biology, philosophy, anthropology and history. The exploration continues on the ‘Balcony of science’, in the auditorium and over the course of the temporary exhibitions.
Bonus: Go back in time using a crank handle, feel the heat of a prehistoric fire, visit a Mongolian yurt ... and lots of other fun things to do.
Catacombes de Paris
A few enthralling statistics: 20 metres deep, 800 metres of underground passageways, 6 to 7 million bones. These Catacombs were laid out on the site of former quarries to house the remains of Parisians that were transferred from overcrowded cemeteries in the city between 1788 and 1814. The remains of Charles Perrault, Jean La Fontaine, Danton and Robespierre are reputed to be amongst them. In short, here you have a history lesson ‘six feet underground’ that you are not likely to forget in a hurry!
Bonus: As well as regular tours, visitors can take a tour of the ossuary in French sign language, with a tour guide, and on a storytelling visit (from 10 yrs).
Pavillons de Bercy - Musée des Arts Forains
Built in the 19th century, these former wine warehouses are listed historical monuments. They are the perfect setting for showcasing the largest European collection of authentic objects from shows and fairground arts in five different ‘worlds’: Musée des Arts Forains, Théâtre du Merveilleux, Salons vénitiens, Théâtre de verdure and Magic Mirror (a real travelling dance hall from the 1920s!).
Bonus: visitors get to join in the fun of the fair at this museum cum show (guided tours only)!
Musée des Égouts de Paris
Visitors are guaranteed a unique experience on a one-hour visit to the Égouts de Paris, an underground city spanning 2,400 km! The tour takes them through a section of galleries specially-adapted to show the inner workings of the most extensive and modern sewer system in the world. They will learn – with the help of models, and real machinery from the past and today – how the city has managed its waste water and water supply since the time of Lutetia.
Bonus: The sewer workers, who accompany the visit and talk about their unusual profession, think that curiosity is a great quality …