I first got really up close and personal with 🌻 Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1890), his artistic genius and his personal demons, when I studied him for part of my GCSE art class (eek, 30 years ago!) . . . I made my dad sit on a decrepit old garden chair in our springtime suburban garden, and then I painted him Van Gogh-style, with ☕️ a cup of … Continue reading ART HISTORY LESSON – teaching your children about VINCENT van GOGH from your home!
It was quite by chance in the spring of 2014 that we discovered that we could enjoy the 📷 « Wildlife Photographer of the Year » exhibition fairly close to home, right near the 🏔 Pays du Mont-Blanc! I had always enjoyed visiting the London-based exhibition at the Natural History Museum (NB « Wildlife Photographer of the Year » competition / exhibition was developed and is produced by the Natural History Museum, London), … Continue reading « Wildlife Photographer of the Year » (Forte di Bard, ITALY)
Every visit to the 🇮🇹 Aosta Valley unveils another wonder to the MBFF family . . . On one of our last visits (back in the spring of 2019!), we stumbled – quite by chance – upon 🖼 a modern & contemporary art museum IN a 🏰 20th century castle overlooking the valley! I did know that one of the 🏰 Aosta Valley castles (the valley is know … Continue reading CASTELLO GAMBA – modern & contemporary art in the Aosta Valley (ITALY)
When my friend heard that we were to spend the weekend in Lyon during the Toussaint holidays, she asked if we were heading to Mini World Lyon, to see the Harry Potter Lego® exhibition: « L’expo-dont-on-ne-doit-pas-prononcer-le-nom » . . . and that got me wondering if I would be able to fit in a visit to our already busy weekend in Lyon, as I have two … Continue reading MINI WORLD LYON – a unique & fabulous family visit!
During the 🍂 Toussaint holidays just gone, MBFF spent a long weekend in the beautiful city of Lyon. As Daddy MBFF had some work meetings in the beautiful city, we decided to head there en famille, arriving at our hotel (located in the 7è arrondissement, just across the river from the Musée des Confluences) at 8h in the morning (eek!), in time for me to have … Continue reading LYON – 72 hours of fun & visits en famille !
There are two 🧬 BIG SCIENCE EVENTS coming up 🏔 au Pays du Mont-Blanc and beyond : 🧪 CERN Open Days – this weekend 14th & 15th September; 🧪 La Fête de la Science – from 5th until 13th October 2019; And this got me thinking about all of the 🧬 science events, activities, workshops, and museums that surround us 🏔 au Pays du Mont-Blanc! What really put this little corner of … Continue reading SCIENCE ACTIVITIES & MUSEUMS for families au Pays du Mont-Blanc (and beyond)
🗓 WEDNESDAYS are in many of the 🏔 Pays du Mont-Blanc communes, a day free from scholastic duties (for young children, at least!). A day to perhaps explore a new ⚽️ sport or 🎨 leisure activity, to relax at home or to head to garderie . . . Colour code for listings: Chamonix Valley (Chamonix, Argentière, Les Houches, Servoz & environs) and Vallorcine Passy & environs Sallanches, Combloux, Cordon & Domancy St Gervais, … Continue reading LES MERCREDIS – creative activities, sport and relaxation for children au Pays du Mont-Blanc
🍁 AUTUMN is my favourite time of year . . . all of a sudden, one notices that there are some 🍁 shades of orange, brown and gold on the otherwise green palette of trees . . . the odd brown leaf falls to the ground, and soon there is a crunchy carpet underfoot . . . autumn is the perfect season to explore our wondrous nature, the … Continue reading AUTUMN ACTIVITIES au Pays du Mont-Blanc (and beyond)
I had been wanting to see and experience « Annecy Paysages » ever since its conception last summer . . . « Annecy Paysages » is a festival that was imagined as an itinerary through an urban centre, for spectators to wander and view the works of art that have been conceived to juxtapose and highlight the fragile balance between nature and urban life, in this beautiful … Continue reading « ANNECY PAYSAGES » en famille (Annecy)
🐧 Geneva’s Natural History Museum (Muséum Genève) has been our go-to museum on ☔️ rainy days for the last 7 years! We have – over the years – pushed a 💤 sleeping baby around the exhibits here, watched our toddlers crawl, run and topple over here, and we have spent plenty of time running after them too! What a wonderful museum this is! Set across 4 floors, the permanent exhibitions … Continue reading Muséum d’Histoire Naturelle (Geneva)
We first visited 🐶 Barryland – Musée et Chiens du Saint-Bernard with a dog-loving and inquisitive 3 year old and a sleeping (mostly!) newborn baby in a pram . . . this visit coincided with the arrival of Saint-Bernard puppies! A year later we visited again and this visit coincided with another litter of cute puppies, but also with the most wonderful 🐣 Easter egg hunt in the … Continue reading Barryland – Musée et Chiens du Saint-Bernard (Martigny)
A visit to 🌳 La Maison du Salève makes for a wonderful family day out . . . originally an 18th century farm from the Chartreuse de Pomier (La Ferme de Mikerne – see here for more history), the building has been renovated to host a cultural centre recounting the history of the ⛰ Salève mountain and its environs (a permanent interactive exhibition and temporary exhibitions) . . . … Continue reading La Maison du Salève (Présilly)
The ❄️ snow on the ski pistes starts to soften under ☀️ the golden spring sunshine, and slowly disappears from alpine town and village centres . . . and then the ski stations shut . . . 🌷 spring flowers shoot up overnight . . . and 🌳 parks and 🌷 gardens re-open . . . and then it is the season once again for hiking . . . a season when … Continue reading SPRINGTIME ACTIVITIES au Pays du Mont-Blanc (and beyond)
You have perhaps heard that saying ☔️ “ there’s no such thing as bad weather; just badly dressed people “ ? (I heard this several times on a couple of work trips to 🇮🇸 Iceland!) . . . that may well be, but even the strongest of resolves can be broken by days and days of 🌧 rainy weather in the mountains (especially when you can no longer actually see … Continue reading RAINY DAYS au Pays du Mont-Blanc
When I had my first baby 8 years ago, I had just moved to a new town 🏔 au Pays du Mont-Blanc . . . I was quite lonely and keen to find baby activities and playgroups in order to get out and about and to socialise a bit! Progressively, I discovered the 🌈 playgroups that were available locally for parents and babies . . . but … Continue reading BABY & TODDLER activities au Pays du Mont-Blanc (and beyond)
Whether you live 🏔 au Pays du Mont-Blanc or you are visiting at this ❄️ WINTER WONDERLAND time of year, then this is the article for you! We all need FRESH IDEAS for family days out (and ideas that don’t only involve ❄️ winter sports!) and – lucky for us – the 🏔Pays du Mont-Blanc is located at the crossroads with 🇨🇭 Switzerland and 🇮🇹 Italy and close to other parts of 🇫🇷 Haute-Savoie and Savoie, with plenty … Continue reading WINTER ACTIVITIES for families au Pays du Mont-Blanc (and beyond)
We are lucky to have some 🖼 wonderful museums 🏔 au Pays du Mont-Blanc, many housed in architectural gems (old, new and renovated). . . and as well as their permanent collections, they also offer 🎨 temporary exhibitions and workshops for children and families over the school holidays! And if we venture further than the 🏔 Pays du Mont-Blanc: 🇫🇷 to Cluses, to Annemasse, to la Maison du Salève, to Annecy, to … Continue reading MUSEUMS & EXHIBITIONS au Pays du Mont-Blanc (and beyond)
Throughout the year in 🇨🇭 Geneva, and from 🗓 October until May in 🇫🇷 Cluses & Annecy, several 🖼 museums & temporary exhibitions are FREE on the 🗓 FIRST Sunday of the month! In addition, the museums often put on some 🎨 wonderful workshops and guided tours for children and families (also FREE) on this day. The next FREE Sundays will be this 🗓 Sunday 1st February and Sunday 1st March 2020); Cluses FREE first … Continue reading [ Geneva, Nyon, Cluses & Annecy ] – FREE museums on FIRST SUNDAY of the month!
🎨 Le Chalet des Créateurs in Saint-Gervais-les-Bains is a fabulous venture, bringing together: 🖼 a gallery showcasing local creative talent (45+ créateurs, with collections changing with each season); 🎁 a boutique with unique hand-made, local goods and gifts to buy; 🎨 a centre providing workshops for children and adults throughout the year (and especially during the school holidays); a workshop for local artists; A little history Charlotte Paget is the protagonist in this … Continue reading Le Chalet des Créateurs (Saint-Gervais-les-Bains)
A contingent of the MBFF (the youngest member and myself) headed off last week on a voyage of art exploration and discovery . . . to the newly painted multi-storey 🚙 car park in Saint-Gervais-les-Bains: 2KM3. This new art project really is a masterpiece: an alternative museum of street art, a FREE museum, a museum open every day of the year! Parking one’s car has never been … Continue reading 2KM3 – when a car park becomes ARTWORK! (Saint-Gervais)
The MBFF team are 🇮🇹 big fans of Italy for holidays! As a destination from the Arve Valley, it is easy to get there through the Mont Blanc Tunnel and we can also book hotels and apartments last minute! Italians LOVE children (and not just well-behaving children; ALL children!), the food is very family-friendly (and delicious!), and there is endless nature, history and culture to explore. We … Continue reading Forte di Bard (Italy)
🖼 La Fondation Pierre Gianadda in 🇨🇭 Martigny, Switzerland is one of my all time favourite museums! There are some fantastic 🖼 temporary exhibitions organised here (every 6 months the main exhibition is changed, and past exhibtions have included: Klee, Goya, Rodin, Giacometti, Moore, Modigliani, Claudel, Chagall, Braque, Dégas, Manet, Dufy, Miró, Gauguin, Bonnard, Van Gogh, Picasso, Morisot . . . ), the building itself is an architectural … Continue reading La Fondation Pierre Gianadda (Martigny)
The 🏔 Musée Montagnard is housed in one of the oldest 18th century houses in the centre of Les Houches and has been arranged to show three typical rooms of such a house: the pèle (bedroom & living room), the outa (kitchen) and the sarte (pantry). The museum houses a rich collection of traditional furniture and objects, largely provided by M. Albert Laprade, the eminent architect-urbanist, who was keen to protect the … Continue reading Le Musée Montagnard (Les Houches)
[ NOTE – the 🐻 Centre de la Nature Montagnarde in Sallanches is undergoing a huge renovation project, and is set to re-open in 2020. While it is shut to the public during the works, you can visit the affiliate site (rue de Doran, old médiathèque site) / guided tours only summer 2019 ] Set in the historic 14th century 🏰 Château des Rubins, just behind the Eglise … Continue reading Centre de la Nature Montagnarde (Sallanches)
Chamonix has a great selection of 🖼 museums, and these museums often offer 🎨 creative workshops or guided tours for children during the school holidays (the Tourist Office will have a list of those scheduled during your stay). In Chamonix town itself you will find; 🏔 the Musée Alpin; 💎 the Espace Tairraz (Musée d’Alpinisme et des Cristaux); 📷 the Maison de la Mémoire et du Patrimoine Janny Couttet; In addition … Continue reading Chamonix Museums