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Pl. du Carrousel (1st Arr.)
(33) 01-40-20-53-17 | www.louvre.fr
HOURS/TIMESMon., Thurs., Sat.-Sun.: 9:00am-6:00pm; Wed. and Fri.: 9:00am-10:00pm; Tue.: Closed
PRICE (ENTRANCE)Full day entrance (excluding temporary exhibitions): EUR 10; Exhibitions: EUR 11; Combo ticket (full day entrance and exhibitions): EUR 14
POPULAR TIMESSummer; weekends; first Sunday of the month
RESERVE IN ADVANCEYes - book online or by phone
WAIT TIME WITHOUT RESERVATIONUp to one hour at peak times
HIGHLIGHTSMona Lisa; Venus de Milo
METROPalais-Royal-Musee du Louvre
What was started in the 16th century by King Francois I as a small collection of artwork in the corner of his echoing Louvre Palace has grown over the centuries to become one of the world’s most famous and most visited fine art museums. Over eight million people a year flock to visit masterpieces like the Mona Lisa, the Venus de Milo, and paintings by the likes of Botticelli, Caravaggio, and Vermeer. The 35,000+ works of art, which are skillfully curated in the palatial space to create a series of small, engaging exhibits, cover prehistory to the mid-19th century and range from Islamic art to decorative arts to sculpture.
GO HERE WITH
Art buffs; friends; family
WHY WE LIKE IT
As Paul Cézanne so eloquently put it, "Keep good company–that is, go to the Louvre.” The collections are incredible, and we’re not just talking about pieces like the Mona Lisa (which, frankly, tend to be too crowded to enjoy). There’s too much to take in in one day (or even one lifetime…) so we prefer doing either a thematic visit (check out the free pamphlets at the information desk with details about recommended themes) or just following wherever our feet lead us. Seriously, you can’t go wrong–even the most obscure corners of the Louvre hold incredible treasures.
WHAT WE WOULD CHANGE
The massive crowds on free days.
GOOD TO KNOW
Certain rooms of the Louvre start closing 30 minutes before the museum closes, and not every room is open everyday (because they don’t have enough staff to keep them all open), so check the schedule online if there’s something specific that you want to see. Admission to the permanent collections is free on the first Sunday of every month and Bastille Day (July 14). Audio guides are available (Adult: EUR 6; Under 18: EUR 2) in English, Spanish, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, and French Sign Language. If you want to book in advance to avoid the line at the ticket counter, you can either order tickets online (you’ll need a French or US postal address to do so), or purchase them at major stores around Paris, including Fnac, Le Bon Marché, Printemps, Galeries Lafayette, and Carrefour. After spending a day at the Louvre, take a walk through the nearby Palais Royal, with its tranquil gardens and super chic shopping arcades (including Marc Jacobs, Pierre Hardy, and Didier Ludot’s legendary vintage, among others).
The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York); The British Museum (London)
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