Welcome to the Best Museums In Paris guide.
Header photo Coronation of Napoleon, Louvre Museum, from the city of Paris. Credit photo : Olivier Bergeron
Table of contents
History And Ancien Art
Indispensable and at the top of this Best Museums in Paris guide, the Musée du louvre is the world’s most-visited museum in the world with more than 10 millions visitors in 2018 before the pandemy. The Louvre is located in the first arrondissement in the center of the city of Paris on the right bank of the river Seine.
A little bit of history, the foundation of the medieval fortress of the 12th-13th centuries are still visible under the museum. Gradually the louvre became a royal residence intermittently until the 14th century.
Francois 1er the king of France ordered the demolition of the dungeon in 1528 in order to build an Italian style palace and
in 1546, he charged the architect Pierre Lescot to build a modern palace in the spirit of the Renaissance architecture. After that, the Louvre Palace was gradually modified by his successors.
In 1983, the President of the French Republic François Mitterrand commissioned the Louvre Pyramid, a glass and metal structure, designed by the Chinese-American architect Ieoh Ming Pei. Opened in 1989, it is now the main entrance to the museum.
Loving old stones, my favorite collections are Egyptian, Greek, Roman and Etruscan antiquities as well as Persia. I also have a weakness for the gallery of Africa, Asia and Oceania arts. But I still feel a great emotion when admiring paintings such as Mona Lisa, the Liberty Guiding The People, the Raft Of Medusa, the Coronation of Napoleon, the Wedding at Cana.
Don’t forget the Louvre is a GIANT museum and you will need more than one day to fully appreciate the collections in details.
However you can speed up and concentrate on the most famous artworks and on the subjects that interest you the most to fit them all in one day.
The two nearest metro stations are louvre-Rivoli and Palais Royal-Musee Du louvre while the main entrance is at the Pyramid of Louvres.
In terms of free, the Louvre is only free on July 14. In the past, the museum was free on the first Sunday of the month and I took the opportunity to discover the Louvre at my own pace for several weekends of the year and take the time to appreciate the collections.
For certain categories the Louvre is free: -18 years old, -26 years old and residents of the European Economic Union and some categories like art teachers. Check the conditions on the Louvre website.
Rue de Rivoli, 75001 Paris
Palais-Royal / Musée du Louvre (lines 1 and 7)
Pyramides (line 14)
Main Entrance : the pyramid
Carnavalet Museum – History Of Paris
Located in the heart of the Marais district in Paris, the Carnavalet museum traces the history of Paris from the Mesolithic to the French Revolution, passing through the Gallo-Roman civilization and the medieval period.
After 5 years of renovation, the museum has reopen in 2021. It is the oldest museum in the City of Paris, effectively it opened to the public on 1880. The museum has a collection of around 600 000 pieces !
The Musee carnavalet is one of my favorite in this best museums to visit in Paris guide, especially for stone lover and history lover.
And above all, the permanent collection is FREE so don’t miss the opportunity to visit this museum during your stay in Paris.
The first time I came to this museum, when I was 14 years old, it was with my college Latin teacher who had wisely decided to take our class of provincials from central France to discover the Gallo-Roman civilization of Paris. In this time, I was really impress by the antic piece of the museum !! Since the museum has changed enormously, at that time, the neolithic canoe of Bercy had not even been discovered yet !
Some others pieces of the collection
We can recognize Mercury by his attributes, he wears a winged-hat and he hold a purse in his right hand and a caduceus in the left.
Bacchus is the god of wine and pleasure. He is also the protector of the dead so he is frequently depict on funerary monument. On this pilaster we see two naked men dancing in a Bacchus parade, maybe drunk or in trance. At the top, a horseman is crushing an ennemy.
The sergeants in armor address the prior of the Schoolchildren who, with his index finger, points to the church, fulfillment of their wish.
23 Rue de Sévigné, 75003 Paris
1) Line 1: Saint-Paul
2) Line 5: Bréguet Sabin
3) Line 7: Pont-Marie
4) Line 8: Chemin Vert
Paris Museum Of Modern Art
Inside the magnificent Palais de Tokyo, built for the universal exposition of 1937, along the Avenue de New-York, the Musée d’Art Moderne de Paris is devoted to modern and contemporary art.
Globally the museum has a collection of around 15 000 pieces while the permanent collection is FREE so it’s a good opportunity to visit this museum during your stay in Paris.
The entry of the museum is located on the 11 avenue Wilson , additionally the nearest metro are the stations Alma-Marceau or Iéna on the line 9.
11, avenue du Président Wilson 75016 Paris.
line 9 – Station Alma-Marceau or Iéna.
A visit to the Orsay Museum is a must in Paris. Its collection of works by impressionist painters is astonishing.
The Musée d’Orsay is free on the first Sunday of the month.