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Paris with a baby... What you wish someone would have told y

Baltimore, Maryland
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Paris with a baby... What you wish someone would have told y

My wife, one-year old daughter and I will be staying in Paris for a week (next week), and we'll be staying in an apartment right across the street from Notre Dame.

I feel like I've done tons of research, and am now just looking for any little suggestions, recommendations, tips, etc etc... that we should be aware of with a baby in Paris!

Any good kid friendly places to eat around Notre Dame? Are there sites we MUST avoid with a baby? Any and all feedback is greatly appreciated.

Sydney, Australia
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1. Re: Paris with a baby... What you wish someone would have told y

As far as possible avoid the metro. The buses are brilliantly set up for pushchairs but most of the Metro lines have stairs, even if only to get up and over the lines underneath. I watched families with prams lifting and carrying again and again.

2. Re: Paris with a baby... What you wish someone would have told y

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Paris, France
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3. Re: Paris with a baby... What you wish someone would have told y

The French have a zillion babies themselves and manage to cope just about everywhere. Any café or brasserie is kid friendly.

Vancouver, Canada
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4. Re: Paris with a baby... What you wish someone would have told y

Take a kid backpack, not a "pram" or stroller, problem solved. I would not want to give up the metro - too useful!

We travelled extensively when our kids were tiny. We never owned a stroller. We did own a tri-wheel speed machine for running though.... but didn't take it travelling.

Paris, France
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5. Re: Paris with a baby... What you wish someone would have told y

Many Metro stations - maybe all of them? - have a large gate where strollers can pass through very easily. They are right there, next to the regular turnstyles - sometimes they look like part of the fence, though.

You must validate your ticket, as usual, and some stations require you to contact the agent at the counter, who will open the gate for you. It takes a minute longer, but it's a lot easier than lifting child and stroller over/under the regular turnstyle.

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6. Re: Paris with a baby... What you wish someone would have told y

Take lots of formula if you bottle feeding!!!! The only milk powder brands that have a french equivalent is Antimalarial....Milupa in Europe. The formulas are very different in France. My 11 month old is not agreeing with the French formula.l....poor soul!! the nappies are interesting!!!

San Diego...
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7. Re: Paris with a baby... What you wish someone would have told y

Here is a recent trip report from someone who took their 1 yr old. It sounds like they ate in some higher end restaurants which I, personally, don't think is a great idea.

They had problems taking away food that their baby didn't eat. I suggest taking zip lock baggies and just put the food in it. I wouldn't ask just do it when the waiter isn't at the table.


Leiden, The...
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8. Re: Paris with a baby... What you wish someone would have told y

A lot of bistros/cafes/restaurants do not have high chairs. Most of the chain type restaurants usually have high chairs - Leon of Brussels, Hippopotamus etc.

I know you can buy some kind of baby seat thing that attaches to a normal chair to make it into a kind of high chair - makes feeding a child a bit easier than having them loose on a chair or stuck in a pushchair.

Tampa, Florida
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9. Re: Paris with a baby... What you wish someone would have told y

There's no reason to avoid the Metro -- thousands of French people manage to figure out how to navigate the Metro with strollers, every single day. If there are two of you, stairs are a non-issue.

I'll agree that high-end restaurants are no place for babies. There are plenty of cafes and bistros that are casual enough to take baby, and still bring out very good food. Part of having a family means recognizing that small kids don't travel like adults, and you have to adjust your travel schedule...this includes restaurant choices.

It is normal to not have a doggy bag in restaurants - knowing this in advance keeps you from ordering things you know won't get eaten. Squirreling away food into ziploc bags will be seen as the height of tackiness should you be seen -- absolutely not recommended. Kids are welcome to eat from their parents' plates -- there's no pressure to order a meal for a baby or toddler, and kid-friendly dishes are almost always available, even if they're not specifically on the menu.

Traveling with kids depends on your kid's personality -- ours was a laid-back, happy kid who didn't bat an eye at transatlantic flights, and begged to go on the Metro when he was old enough to know what it was. We have friends whose kid screamed bloody murder on the 5-minute trip to the grocery, and the smallest unfamiliar crumb on the plate led to breathless tantrums. They wanted to travel, but understood that it just wasn't in the child's makeup to travel at that time, so they waited, and this same child is now a road warrior who loves to travel.

Garden Grove...
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10. Re: Paris with a baby... What you wish someone would have told y

We were there with our 1 yr old granddaughter and her mom a few years ago. We had a great time. We did use the metro a lot. my daughter wore the baby in a front pack and we carried the folded umbrella stroller onto the metro. When we got off she placed the baby in the stroller. We moved at a slower pace but we still moved. This trip was a little different for us. We stayed in St Mande. We took the metro to central parts of Paris for sight seeing and shopping and then came back the St Mande for an hour or so in the beautiful park there. We then went to Monoprix for dinner items. We were there in April and blessed with wonderful weather. My daughter brought formula and diapers so I cannot comment on those things. The baby loved the yogurt and the fresh fruit we got in Paris. She really liked gnawing on the end of a baguette. Kept her quite happy. We did not go to any museums or up the Eiffel tower on this particular trip. We did do lots of walking and up to the the top of the Arche.

The lack of high chairs was a bit of an annoyance because we had to take turns holding the baby while we were eating. The only place I recall having a high chair was at one of the Hippo restaurants.

We have some beautiful memories from this trip and a wonderful photograph of my husband helping Cass take he first steps at Parc Monceau.