Lille: 6 surprises to experience with children

A zoo on the ramparts, a museum in a pool, a ferret who sells books and vanilla waffles… take the family and discover the surprises of the capital of Hauts-de-France.

Go to the zoo

Renowned for its 17th century red brick houses, paved pedestrian streets and Grand'Place, Lille maintains its historic heritage. Around the citadel fortified by Vauban, a beautiful park has been created, a paradise for children with its playgrounds, its mini amusement park (the Cita-Parc, opened last August) and its miniature zoo where live more than 100 species. From wolves to big-eared fennecs, we meet beautiful people while raising awareness of the protection of biodiversity through many activities and events.
Lille Zoo (External link) (French only)
Cita-Parc (External link) (French only)

Dive into an art pool

The New York Times has ranked La Piscine among the most fascinating museums in the world. It must be said that this old pool Art Deco style looks and should entertain the curious with its beautiful pool, its large diving board and statues and works of art, signed Rodin, Claudel, Miro or Picasso, exposed until in the locker rooms and shower stalls! To visit the André Diligent Museum of Art and Industry in Roubaix just enlarged and reopened to the public, it's easy: just take the metro from the center of Lille.
La Piscine, André Diligent Museum of Art and Industry (External link) (French only)

Enjoy a waffle at Méert

If ever there was a secret recipe, it’s this one. For nearly 250 years Maison Méert has been delighting gourmands, young and old, with its famous vanilla waffles from Madagascar. Impossible to visit Lille without succumbing to this delicately scented delicacy. You can take them away or enjoy them in the back shop, a delightful vintage tea room brimming with sweet fantasies.
Méert (External link) (French only)

Visit Gare Saint-Sauveur

A former goods station, fully renovated and transformed into a vast cultural and leisure space – this is a place for the whole family. With games, parties and shows on the esplanade, exhibitions, projections and concerts in the hall, there’s something happening all year round. You can sit on the terrace below the great hall at Bistrot de Saint So, a bar-brasserie in the front row where children are welcome.
Saint-Sauveur Station (External link) (French only)

Get lost in the Furet du Nord

A long time ago in Hauts-de-France, rabbits were hunted with ferrets. But in place of a fur shop, a bookshop was set up in 1936 on Lille’s Grand Place. As a nod to this local tradition, it took the name of Le Furet du Nord. Today it boasts the largest children’s literature department in France, an educational toy library and 700m² of books and games – including a selection in English – to instil a love of reading in your youngsters.
Le Furet du Nord (External link) (French only)

Take in the air at LaM

A museum in beautiful grounds: this is the LaM, Lille Métropole Museum of Modern Art, Contemporary Art and Art Brut. Culture lovers can visit the beautiful collection and take part in family workshops, while others can simply enjoy the sculptures in the fresh air. Taking a break on the grass in the shade of a large Calder structure will give you plenty to talk about.

Lille in Northern France