Call out the inner kid in you and plan a whimsical carousel chasing day within your Paris itinerary. This is the ultimate guide to Paris carousels that are permanent in the city. It also includes an easy walking map to help you locate them easily.
Carousels add colours to your Paris photos, not to mention the fun of tracking them down.
Some fun facts about carousels:
Did you know that carousels came from jousting games played by kings and knights of Europe? It was the Turkish and Arabian horsemen in the 12th century that introduced these games.
They evolved overtime into calvary spectacles where commoners would take part as well. People started to make carousels with wooden horses hung on chains for children to mimic these games in the 17th century. Animals and people powered them.
Thomas Bradshaw was the man who invented the first steam powered mechanical carousel in 1861. Then came a mechanism that enabled the horses to bop up and down on gold twisted poles as the carousel turns in the 1870s by Frederick Savage.
Since then, improved versions were being made until those of what we see today.
Here are 8 permanent Paris carousels that you can find dotted around. I have also provided an easy walking route map to finding them at the end of this post.
1.Paris carousel at Place St Pierre, 75018, Paris(Metro line2 : Anvers)
This carousel sits at the base of the Sacre Coeur. Have a walk around Montmartre and visit the church before descending down to have a twirl on it. The design is from the belle epoque era.
2.Paris carousel at Square de Bagtinolles, 144bis, rue Cardinet, 75017, Paris (Metro line : 14 Pont Cardinet)
If you’re a pop culture fan, this Paris carousel is well worth tracking for. The theme is 1920s Disney characters.
3.Parc Monceau Carousel, 75008, Paris (Metro line 2 : Monceau)
This carousel houses antique vehicles of sorts in deep vibrant colors. It sits not too far from the main entrance of the park on the left. Perfect for escaping crowds in the afternoons. Also makes a perfect quiet location for your Paris surprise proposal if you are a garden fan.
4.Carrousel du Trocadero, next to the Fontaine du Trocadero , 750016, Paris (Metro line 6 : Trocadero)
This carousel sits at the bottom of the Trocadero next to the fountains. It is not only beautiful but also one with great views to the Eiffel Tower.
5.Carrousel de la Tour Eiffel, Quai Branly, 75007, Paris (Metro line 6: Bir Hakeim)
This is the first green carousel in Paris. It consumes up to less than 12 times of energy than the traditional carousels. They are partly powered by solar panels, photo sensors and pedal powers. The horses and some vehicles on the carousel has pedals which turns a wheel that generates power. Next to this carousel are bikes which you can pedal to generate power to it if you don’t fancy riding on the carousel. But, going on the carousel and feed your sense of wonderment is way more fun.
This place is not the greatest for your Paris photoshoot though. It is too close to the Eiffel Tower and there’s fence up all year round which spoils the carefree look.
6.Paris carousel in the Jardin des Tuileries, 75001, Paris (Metro line 1 : Tuileries)
This carousel is located between the Louvre and Place de la Concorde in the Jardin des Tuileries. You can either metro it or walk down from the Louvre or walk up from Place de la Concorde.
Jardin des Tuileries can be a nice resting place too for your tired feet. You will find benches along tree lined paths. You will see typical green metal chair around and in particular where the ponds are. This is also a great place to do your Paris surprise proposal.
7.Paris carousel at Jardin du Luxembourg, closes access at 9 rue Guynemer, 75006, Paris (Metro line 4 : Saint Placide, 12 : Notredame des Champs or Rennes)
This carousel is the oldest in Paris, dating back to 1879. You can tell by looking at the tired horses and the architecture of the carousel. The charm of this carousel is the ring game (played in the medieval times with real horses, spears and rings). Children are given a wooden shank where they will try and spear the most tin rings as the carousel turns. The winner will have the next ride for free.
8.Dodo Manege, Jardin des Plantes, entrance by rue Buffon, 75005, Paris (Metro line 5 : Austerlitz, 7 and 10 : Jussieu)
This 1930s styled carousel features extinct and endangered animals (hence the name Dodo). It is only built in 1992 though. You can find this carousel situated at the fringe of the Jardin des Plantes.
It is well worth meandering around this jardin in May, where flowers begin to bloom in earnest. Bring along snacks, there are benches in the park for you to soak up the pretty flower beds and have a little respite.
You can also visit the greenhouse for a small fee. You can find a small outdoor cafe from the small rue Buffon entrance serving cold and hot beverages. This garden can be a nice location for your Paris proposal or an engagement photoshoot.
9.Carousels in Paris easy walking map
The walk from one carousel to the next takes about 3.5 hours. Give yourself a day for it so that you can take it leisurely and time for photos.
Click on the map for live navigation!
I hope you’ve enjoyed this little write up on Paris carousels. It did take some time to go around taking the photographs and writing up, so please spread the love and share away!
If you would like to schedule a Paris photoshoot or a photoshoot with the carousels, I’d love to hear from you. Get in touch and let’s work together.