Top tips for visiting the louvre for kids in 2023 including details on the new, hands-on Studio! kids room in the Louvre.
Is the Louvre kid friendly? Yes!! I spent a lot of time researching Paris in general and came across lots of comments or blog posts suggesting that The Louvre was something to be survived with kids, not enjoyed. Obviously everyone’s experiences are different but my kids not only liked the museum, they loved it and asked to go back again after the first visit! I didn’t visit with the intention of writing a blog post specifically about the museum, but after we happened to stumble on The Studio! hands-on kids room, not having read a thing about it in any of the other blog posts or Facebook comments I’d read about Paris, I felt compelled to put it out there so no one misses out!
The Louvre has 35,000 works of art that are on display, the oldest of which go back more than nine thousand years! Kids are free but adults need to reserve tickets. If you’re wondering ‘how long does the Louvre take for kids?’, I’d say at a minimum two hours even if the kids aren’t super into museums. We spent four hours the first day (two were a part of a Paris Muse tour) and three hours the second day!
Top tips for visiting the louvre for kids in 2023
- Don’t miss out on the Studio! room, it’s a hands on workshop specifically designed for kids and just opened in the past year or so. More details specifically about that below this list.
- There are multiple entrances to get into the museum and often the longest line is the one into the famous glass pyramid, so research other options if you’re going at a busier time.
- You can search the collection for certain topics– my kids wanted to know if there were any pieces featuring Hades/Pluto so I searched that name and found one that was not on display and another that was, so then we got to hunt it down! It was a fun DIY treasure hunt.
- The audio guides are on Nintendo DS and have specific family tour options to follow and listen to; they are an extra charge but you can reserve them ahead of time.
- The coat room is free and has lockers to store your things – you can have water in the galleries but only food in the cafes.
- There are two gift shops split across a hall, both have different things and English language books/games are mixed in among the French.
- There is a Starbucks, two cafes, and one restaurant inside the actual museum, or you can find other options at the nearby underground shopping mall.
- They will loan out strollers & front-wearing baby carriers for free at the visitor’s desk – no backwearing baby carriers or framed backpacks allowed!
- Buy tickets online – also consider the museum pass if it makes sense for your itinerary.
- Currently, if you have a Capital One X travel credit card, one of the benefits is a 6 month membership to The Cultivist, which got us free Louvre and Musee d’Orsay tickets! Check out the card benefits here and the Cultivist perk here.
- Not all signs have english translations (though several did) – download a translation app to use if you don’t have a museum guide, it makes translating titles/information pretty quick and easy.
- Busiest times, per all the resources I could find online and common sense, are Mondays (most other museums are closed), the monthly free days, and mid-mornings on weekends. There are late hours certain days of the week (check their official schedule) and mid-afternoon or first thing in the morning during the week are going to be the least busy. However, we went in the afternoon on Monday the first time and while busy, it was fine. The place is huge, no need to stress about crowds unless you’re hoping for photos without other people in them.
- The Tuileries Gardens are right near the Louvre and a great place to take a break or start your day before asking kids to be quiet – the area has a free playground, trampolines, a carousel (under construction when we visited 1/2023), toy boats (not available when we visited in 1/2023) and open space to run, see more here.
- They have specific visitor itineraries on their site, check them out here.
- If you read a blog post or someone mention a “tactile room” where kids can touch models of sculptures it is no longer open at this time (1/2023) – I emailed to confirm this with museum staff and they said it is closed now and they hope to recreate it, but no projected re-opening date at this time.
- There are LOTS of tour options to go through the Louvre – I have read good reviews about working with Meet the Locals and a more affordable official Louvre tour ‘My first Louvre’; all need to be booked in advance. We did the Paris Muse Clues scavenger hunt from Paris Muse and my kids had fun but I felt like it was more geared at kids who don’t normally go to or enjoy museums, there wasn’t time for them to ask any questions or stop anywhere but the designated places. It felt pretty rushed and we stayed later by ourselves and then went back a second day.
- The official site has its own little kids page with some illustrated stories and videos for kids to watch.
The Studio for Kids – a kids hands-on art space in the Louvre
Located on the ground level of the Richelieu wing, the Studio is a fun, hands-on children’s area with activities and engaging information! As I said above, we stumbled on this room despite my research ahead of time, I hadn’t read about it in any travel groups or blog posts and it was just a quick sentence on the map. This space is used for classes and workshops at specific times, but open most of the day for free play! They change the activities/offerings regularly but I snapped a few photos to give you a sense of the vibe.
There were several large scale activities and puzzles, a stack of books and games, just lots of options to touch things and get engaged with art from the museum.
Here are two more examples, but there were lots of fun things not pictured. A few postcards you could use as a scavenger hunt of your own, if you can read or translate the french, the front had a close-up shot of the work you were trying to find and answer the questions about (Qui suis-je = Who am I). They give you the wing, (Richelieu), room (salle 105), and level (niveau 0) to give you a good start.
This was such a good space to be a little freer and touch things, highly recommend making it a part of your visit!