Les Invalides
(Museum of Arms and Armor)

The collections showcased at Les Invalides are varied, interesting and span over large periods of time

Old cannons on display at Les Invalides
Old cannons on display at Les Invalides cc licensed photo by b1mbo

War has played a significant role in almost every country's history and France is no different. Les Invalides or the Museum of Arms and Armour contains a comprehensive history of war and the role it played in the establishment and development of the great country of France. Items on display here include weaponry, artillery used and armour and uniforms utilized by the French army. There are also a number of other important documents and tributes that are on display.

One thing to bear in mind is that much of the ancient French armour and weaponry, while practical and functional for its time, are also intricate and beautiful works of art. Viewing the exhibits of le musée de l'Armée is on par with visiting any of the finest art museums in Paris.

Les Invalides is situated in the 7th arrondissement of Paris and is home to an assortment of military equipment, monuments and military buildings. The buildings and palatial structures that house the museum and other military facilities including a hospital and veterans retirement home are truly spectacular. They have a rich history dating back to the late 1600s.

A visit to Les Invalides is quite the cultural experience for those looking to immerse themselves in the history of Paris and France. The museum of arms and armour resides within one of the buildings at Les Invalides while the burial site of some of the country's most revered war heroes is contained in one of the other buildings. In fact, the remains of Napoleon Bonaparte himself are buried in a tomb here, a tomb many patriots and historians would love to pay tribute to.

The museum, as it stands today, is more than a century old. It was established in 1905 when two prominent museums merged into one. The Historical Army Museum and the Artillery Museum merged to form the Museum of Arms and Armour. Some of the most notable collections in the museum would be the "ancient weapons and armours" collection, the "artillery scale-models" collection and the collection dedicated in part to Napoleon I. The collections showcased are varied, interesting and span over large periods of time and this museum is considered to be one of the best of its kind in the world. A visit to Les Invalides and the Museum of Arms and Armour is one of the best cultural daytrips you can go on while in Paris.

Nearby attraction: Musée Rodin

Facts For Your Visit

Fee: Yes, however entry is free with the Paris Pass and for individuals under the age of 18. There is also lower admission after 5pm in summer and during winter.

Currently Closed

Hours This Week:
  • Monday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Tuesday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Wednesday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Thursday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Friday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Saturday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Sunday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM

Address: 129 Rue de Grenelle, 75007 Paris, France

Phone: 0 810 11 33 99

Official Website: Les Invalides

Directions

Metro / RER Line Nearest Station Walking Time
M8La tour - Maubourg3 minutes
M13Varenne5 minutes
RER CInvalides7 minutes

How to get to Les Invalides by Metro / RER

By Metro: from Latour - Maubourg station exit and walk northeast along Avenue de la Motte-Picquet to the main entrance; from Varenne Station exit and walk north along Blvd. des Invalides then left on Place des Invalides to the entrance.

By RER C: exit Invalides Station and proceed straight south through the plaza along Avenue du Marechal Gallieni to the entrance.

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Reviews

Rated 4.5 out of 5The Army Museum Star Rating

4 Star Rating Lots of history, very well preserved. Lots to see. Definitely worth a trip. Napoleon has his tomb here, of course, but there are several other museums here. The Charles de Galle history section in the basement was mildly disappointing, but the rest of it was great!

Melinda Hanson - 6 hours ago

3 Star Rating The exhibits and overall experience is priceless, especially if you are interested in WW2, military, the French resistance and Charles de Gaule. The description on almost all exhibits is only, in French though so unless you feel comfortable with French, a tour guide is recommended (you would have to pay extra for that)

Panagiotis Petsas - 17 days ago

5 Star Rating If you are a fan of anything military related, you need to visit this place. To be honest though I think there would be something in here to attract everyone. We saw less than half of what they had and it was great. My boyfriend really enjoyed seeing the WWI and WWII exhibitions, and getting to see and hear about the wars from a French perspective. I enjoyed seeing all the uniforms of the different countries and squadrons, as well as looking at the various styles of propaganda used throughout the wars.

Lizzie Johnson - 1 month ago

5 Star Rating Pretty cool Museum. The ticket buys you access to all 5 parts so there is no way it's not worth it. The museum is laid out nicely as well and my reccomendation would be shell out the 6 euros for the audio guide which does make all 5 parts much better.

Alex Crew - 1 month ago

5 Star Rating Do medieval weapons and armours interest you? Are you interested in seeing some of the finest craftsmanship in military equipment history? Do you like cannons? Bigger cannons? And huge ass mortars? Does the history of WW1 interest you in any way? Are you keen to see the equipment, weapons, tools and vehicles from WW2 era? Would you like to see the enormous tomb of Napoleon under an enormous dome? If you answer yes to any one of the questions, this is the place for you. Devote at least 4 hours if you are not planning to make a speed run (which I do not recommend). One problem was a great majority of the info regarding the exhibits were in French only. You would get the name in French, English, German etc., but the explanation part would be in just French. I used Google Translate instant translation to some extent, but this is definitely a shortcoming for this place. Other than that it is a lovely building and the exhibits are very well laid out, you do not get lost or have to branch off to see everything. I PERSONALLY PREFER A LINEAR EXPERIENCE IN MUSEUMS.

Selim AKIN - 3 months ago

Video


This excellent video takes you on a stunning tour through le musée de l'Armée

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