The Louvre

The Louvre is the most visited museum and arguably the most renowned museum in the world

Famous Glass Pyramid entrance to the Louvre
Famous Glass Pyramid entrance to the Louvre cc licensed photo by zoetnet

There are few museums anywhere in the world that have attracted more attention than the Louvre. The world's most visited museum, the Louvre is home to in excess of 35000 pieces of art dating from the earliest times to the 19th century and displayed in an exhibition space covering an amazing 650,000 square feet. Some famous pieces of art include The Madonna and Leonardo da Vinci’s Saint Anne, however there are literally thousands more works of art and historical pieces for visitors to view.

The Louvre has a lengthy and interesting history. During the 12th century, Paris was Europe's largest city. To protect the capital from the Anglo Norman threat king, Philippe Auguste, who was reigning at that time, decided to build a garrison to reinforce its western defences on the shores of the River Seine. The large fortress comprised of a moat, a huge tower at the centre of the structure plus other towers encompassed narrow gates at the wall on south and east sides. The solid building had two inner buildings butt against the exterior walls on the south and west sides. This magnificant structure lost its ability to be Paris' defence fortress as the city grew far beyond the original wall by the mid 14th century. Other defences were developed under King Charles V which enclosed the Louvre within the expanding city. In 1364 he commissioned his architect, Raymon du Temple, to transform the ancient garrison into a splendid royal mansion.

Each section of the Louvre has its story to tell and bears the mark of a different influential personality. The Louvre was turned into a museum in 1791 and first opened its doors as such in 1793. The first pieces on display were works of art that were donated or loaned by families that could afford to do so. Since then, the Louvre has simply grown in splendour and has had many galleries added and renovations done to turn it into the amazing museum that it is today.

The Louvre, as with most famous museums, offers floor plans, audio guides and guide books to visitors. It also features a number of cafes, media centres and even a bookstore for those that wish to bring a little of the Louvre home with them. The Tuileries Gardens offer a number of activities for the restless little ones who may not enjoy taking in the art of the Louvre as much as their parents. Instead, they can be amused with boat rides and trampolines and other play area activities in the gardens.

Nearby attractions: Jardin des Tuileries and Museum of Decorative Arts

Facts For Your Visit

Fee: Save time and skip the queue Free entry with the Paris Pass and on the first Sunday of each month.

Open Now: No

Hours This Week:
  • Monday: 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Tuesday: Closed
  • Wednesday: 9:00 AM – 10:00 PM
  • Thursday: 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Friday: 9:00 AM – 10:00 PM
  • Saturday: 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Sunday: 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Address: Rue de Rivoli, 75001 Paris, France

Phone: 01 40 20 50 50

Official Website: The Louvre

Directions

Metro / RER Line Nearest Station Walking Time
M1 or M7Palais Royal - Musée du Louvre‎3 minutes

How to get to The Louvre by Metro / RER

By Metro: From Metro Line 1 or 7 exit at Palais Royal - Musée du Louvre‎‎ Station and proceed to your right (west) along Rue de Rivoli and then cross the road to your left and proceed through the arches at Place du Corrousel. The entrance to the the Louvre is in the Glass Pyramid ahead and to your left.

The Louvre is also easily accessed from the Batobus.

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Reviews

Rated 4.7 out of 5

5 Star Rating Being inside is like nothing I've experienced in a museum. It is so rich in history and art and so humongous! One of my favorite things in Paris and I had three children under the age of 9 with me! A must see but make sure you prep before you go. You can't just wing The Louvre. Map out your adventure and mentally prepare yourself for a lot of people.

Chanc Nicole Todd - 9 days ago

4 Star Rating This place was great, but be warned, it is huge. You will need a day to do it justice. There is so much here, it's really good value for money. There are various skip the line options which can be well worth it. They are not skip the lines though. You will need to line up with other skip the line people. This was certainly quicker than the line for people without tickets though. If you plan to see Mona, get there early, and do this first. The room this is held in gets ridiculously busy. I suggest planning your visit carefully if you have small children as there is a lot of walking and a lot of stairs.

Luke Slattery - 15 days ago

5 Star Rating World's largest museum should tell you that this thing is HUGE! I wish I had 3 whole days to go through it.. I think it would take around that long to see and read everything. Will definitely be back. Layout is really cool and goes by time periods or different areas. Paints, art, and artifacts are amazing. I loved the Egyptian area. The Mona Lisa is crazy busy! The people around it has forced the ropes far away just because of the sheer amount of people wishing to photograph. Architecture and the pyramid outside are amazing. Very beautiful and enormous building. Lines are very busy and prices were a lot. There is a stop on the metro for the Louvre, so it might be easier to park somewhere else and take the metro to here (that's what we did).

Austin Phillips - 23 days ago

5 Star Rating World-class art museum with plenty of big-name works. There also are some really cool sculptures in the Americas area. Make sure to look up and check out the ceilings, too. There is enough here for art-lovers to spend several days, or if you want to hit the big things and then browse a bit, it's good for a half-day visit. Lines may look long but move fairly quickly. We went without tickets in advance and it still did not take too long to get inside.

Bill Jones - 1 month ago

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Guide to visiting the Louvre in Paris

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