There’s nothing like an amazing building filled with amazing things to keep both parents and kids happy. This palace, literally the Palace of Discovery, provides just that.
Housed in the west wing of Le Grand Palais and dating back to 1897, the Palais de la Découverte was converted into a museum in 1937 by the Nobel-Prize-winning physicist Jean Baptiste Perrin. Here, between the Champs Elysées and the Seine, this lesser-known museum combines history, glamorous architecture, science, and oh so much discovery.
Brimming with interactive exhibits on chemistry, mathematics, biology, and astronomy, this science museum features a pi room, optical illusions, puzzles to solve, buttons to press, and discoveries to be made. Most exhibits have English translations, and the very few that don’t are still fun, as the interactive set up gives you a clue what it’s all about soon enough.
In addition to the permanent exhibits, the ‘Discovery Palace’ also hosts temporary exhibitions – the current one, Poison, explores all things poisonous with live snakes, lizards, and frogs, along with videos and shows and runs through August 2019.
Whether visiting with children or among adults, plan to stay a while. There really is so much to see and do, and plenty of fun to be had for young and old. Pressing buttons on small machines to see what happens is more enjoyable than I care to admit. You could even spend the whole day here – a café serves coffee and snacks as well as a superb gift shop sure to delight any nerds: periodic table or pi mugs, science books, chemistry sets, some cute Paris souvenirs, and plush, fluffy spiders… What more could you ask for?