Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Family Guide Paris (Eyewitness Travel Family Guide)

A family-focused guidebook to Paris for traveling with children ages 4 to 12.

DK Eyewitness Travel: Family Guide Paris gives parents with children ages four to twelve the specific, family-friendly information they need to plan a vacation to a city with an abundance of history, outstanding museums, and beautiful parks. Sail a toy boat at Jardin du Luxembourg, design a robot at Parc de la Villette, and explore can't-miss sights such as the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame.

What's in the book:

  • Each major sight is treated as a "hub" destination, around which to plan a day, plus, DK's custom illustrations and reconstructions of city sights give real cultural insight.
  • "Let off steam" suggestions and eating options around each attraction enable the entire family to recharge their batteries.
  • Maps outline the nearest parks, playgrounds, and public restrooms.
  • "Take shelter" sections suggest indoor activities for rainy days.
  • Dedicated "Kids' Corner" features include cartoons, quizzes, puzzles, games, and riddles to inform and entertain young travelers.
  • Listings provide family-friendly hotels and dining options.

Written by travel experts and parents who understand the need to keep children entertained while enjoying family time together, DK Eyewitness Travel: Family Guide Paris offers child-friendly sleeping and eating options, detailed maps of main sightseeing areas, travel information, budget guidance, age-range suitability, and activities for Paris.

A Look Inside Eyewitness Travel Family Guide: Paris
(click on images to enlarge)

"These books are packed with suggestions for kid-friendly restaurants, outdoor spots where travelin' tots can run free, rainy day fun, and more. They also offer tips for engaging your child's mind and sense of wonder at every stop." – Scholastic Parent & Child

"What…makes this series unusual is the attention to detail. Yes, all the big sights are here, but even the famous places are given a slight twist — always with children and their parents in mind." – Chicago Tribune

"For families traveling with young people, it's hard to do better than this handsomely illustrated guide, which is arranged geographically and notable for its focus on family friendly activities." – Library Journal

Most helpful customer reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful.
By csb
This book provides inadequate and incorrect information. It does not give the Metro stops for each spot and it's hard to track the correct one down if you don't know Paris at all.
Also, the information about days and times that certain attractions are open is often incorrect. Please note: the Louvre is NOT open every day from 9-9. We used this book with our 2 granddaughters, ages 12 and 14, and lost too much time using this book (and missed the Louvre completely).
This was a surprise because we have found the DK-Eyewitness books to be very good in the past.

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful.
2This will drive you crazy!
By wkessler
At first blush when you receive this book you're thinking, wow, great pictures, organized by Parisian neighborhoods, sidebars with areas of interest and food choices, what could be better?

But when you're on the ground in Paris, this book will drive you up the wall. Please, please find another book. Specifically,

* the metro maps show the stations, but not which lines take you to which destinations. "The Lowdown" sidebars mention the lines, but not which direction takes you to which destination or which stop is best (for instance there are two stops listed for the Louvre, but only one stop is the one directly under the museum). The maps in the back show you which metro lines go where, but don't show you which sites are near which lines, so again, you're left guessing and cross-referencing constantly.
* food choices listed are mostly very expensive. If you're a family of five like we are, and you follow the guide, you'll easily spend $100 for lunch or $55 for a "picnic lunch" (not $25 like they claim, maybe this book hasn't been updated since 1973). What you need to know in any particular spot *really* is: where is the best patisserie (bakery), where is the best pizzeria, and where can i find a bathroom/pharmacy that's open on a Sunday because my kid just threw up.
* "A perfect Parisian day" at the beginning of each section/area is a joke! If you have a little kid (we had a 4-yr old), you *cannot* cover the distances (even with a stroller) listed on those perfect days. Be warned that distances in Paris are more than they look, and while the subway can help, you have to go up and down lots of stairs dodging harried locals.
* While the guide sometimes lists parks where your kids can play, it ignores the quality/upkeep of those parks. Sometimes they're filled with needles, drunks, or other unsavory elements. I doubt the DK people actually went to the parks in person.

In general, the book paints Paris as a super-family-friendly city. While the locals can be very friendly, especially if you speak french (as I do), the city is not any more family-friendly than say, New York. So you really need to plan ahead carefully so that you don't waste time on dead-ends, end up in a spot that's really geared to adults, etc etc. For that, you need a guide that is truly oriented at families and the special information they need. This guide isn't it.

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful.
5Haven't been yet, but this book is a great starter tool
By Amazon Customer
I'm preparing to take a trip to Paris with my 8 year old son in August (4 months away). Neither one of us have ever traveled out of the country. I purchased this book and it has proved most helpful in knowing what to do, where to stay, how to get around and great ideas for making travel with children easier. The maps at the end are great and very useful after reading the content as well as the key French phrases. The "Lowdowns" on each page give you pertinent information as far as hours, costs, nearest visitor information and places of interest. We are also going to London so I will be purchasing the Family Guide London next!

See all 6 customer reviews...

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