Europe’s largest science museum and one of Paris’ most visited exhibition spaces, La Cite des Sciences et de L'lndustrie, or the City of Science & Industry, has been fascinating visitors with its hands-on exhibits since its inauguration in 1986.
An innovative edifice of glass and iron masterminded by architect Adrien Fainsilber, the museum’s shimmering façade sets the scene for a journey into the high-tech world of modern-day science. Set in the modern parklands of Parc de la Villette, Paris’ largest park, the City of Science & Industry is renowned for its pioneering exhibitions, covering everything from genetics to audio technology, and including an inventive Space exploration exhibit. Most impressive is the Cité des Enfants, aimed at children from 2-12 years, where an incredible range of child-friendly installations offer interactive demonstrations allowing children to operate robots, experiment with water conductivity and broadcast ‘news’ footage on a live television.
A planetarium, a cinema fitted with screen-synced hydraulic seating and a Navigation Museum housed in the Argonaute, a 1950s submarine, are also among the museum’s unique selling points. Equally popular is the iconic La Géode, an Omnimax cinema housed in a 112-foot-high mirrored sphere that dominates the museum’s futuristic frontage.
There’s enough technological wizardry on show at La Cite to keep even the sharpest intellectuals on their toes, but if you’re not science-minded, don’t worry - the museum’s vast showcase has a plethora of science-themed fun to keep you amused. Play around with wacky optical illusions, experience weightlessness or dub your voice onto the image of the Mona Lisa. All in the name of science!