Musée d'Orsay (Art Museum)

Musée d'Orsay, located in a former railroad station, is one of the most popular art museums in Paris

Expansive interior of Musée d'Orsay
Expansive interior of Musée d'Orsay cc licensed photo by Dimitry B

The Musee d'Orsay is a magnificent art museum situated on the left bank of the Seine River running through the heart of Paris. If you are visiting Paris as a tourist, then stopping off at the Musee d'Orsay is an absolute must, in fact if you have decided that you have to visit the world famous Louvre museum then you should most definitely visit the Musee d'Orsay in order to really get the full experience of significant art works within Paris.

The Musee d'Orsay was originally a railway station known as the Gare d'Orsay, completed in 1909 and served as the main terminus for the trains servicing the railways to south western France up until 1939. The building has been used over the years for many different purposes including as a partial mailing room during the Second World War, as a backdrop and set for several films including Franz Kafka's The Trial and as a sort of headquarters for the Renaud-Barrault Theatre Company.

In 1970 plans were put in motion to demolish the entire building and the green light was given to commence demolition, however, the timely intervention of the then minister for cultural affairs, Jacques Duhamel, prevented its demolition in order to make way for a new hotel. Instead the building was added to a list of historic buildings and saved for many generations to come.

In 1974 it was suggested that the building be converted into a museum in order to create a bridge between the Louvre and the modern art museum and so the Musee d'Orsay was born and is today one of the most popular museums in Paris. Extensive work was carried out on both the exterior as well as the interior of the museum however the original railway station look was maintained in terms of the huge, rather cavernous space which provides vast amounts of light, perfect for viewing works of art.

Nearby attractions: Jardin des Tuileries, Le Musée des Arts Decoratifs and Musée de l'Orangerie

Facts For Your Visit

Fee: Yes - Free entry with the Paris Pass.

Open Now

Hours This Week:
  • Monday: Closed
  • Tuesday: 9:30 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Wednesday: 9:30 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Thursday: 9:30 AM – 9:45 PM
  • Friday: 9:30 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Saturday: 9:30 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Sunday: 9:30 AM – 6:00 PM

Address: 1 Rue de la Légion d'Honneur, 75007 Paris, France

Phone: 01 40 49 48 14

Official Website: Musée d'Orsay (Art Museum)

Map of nearby accommodations: Booking.com

Directions

Metro / RER Line Nearest Station Walking Time
M12Solférino Station4 minutes
RER-CMusée d'Orsay0 minutes

How to get to Musée d'Orsay (Art Museum) by Metro / RER

By Metro: Exit Metro Line 12 at Solférino Station and walk north on Rue de Bellechasse to the museum entrance.

By RER C: The exit at Musée d'Orsay Station is located right in front of the entrance to the musum.

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Reviews

Rated 4.7 out of 5Musée d'Orsay Star Rating

5 Star Rating Superb museum with plenty to see. We spent over 4 hours here and thoroughly enjoyed it. Also had our breakfast and dinner as well which was really nice. Going back this April as a lot changes every now and again, and will have changed.

Martin Ewen - 1 day ago

5 Star Rating There are many reasons why this is one of the most important museums in the world, and stands out even in Paris where there is so much to do and see. Beautiful architecture and breathtaking artwork of course, but the ambiance and even the restaurant are noteworthy. Save yourself some hassle and a long wait in line by buying your tickets online for a small fee. I bought mine online with my phone when I arrived, and walked to the reserved ticket entrance bypassing a line of a couple hundred people.

Andy Duvall - 17 days ago

5 Star Rating I visited this Museum with my toddler sleeping in a stroller. I was really concerned that there would be only steps but this place had ramps on either side of the exhibits. How wonderful. It wasn't crowded. We didn't even buy tickets online. The queues moved quickly. It was a fantastic experience even though my son missed everything. I would recommend this place for ppl with small kids. there is also a food stall outside with the best sandwiches.

dillyjanjan - 20 days ago

5 Star Rating An amazing museum, really impressive from the inside with some of the most famous works of art in their collections. For an instance, you can see pieces like the most famous Van Gogh paintings. There are also numerous statues spread around the museum for the delight of the visitor. I recommend spending at least half a day in there if you can't have a full day. Less than that is too little time. For those who do like art and museums, I recommend visiting in multiple days, so you have enough time for checking the entire place.

Alexandre Machado Rocha - 1 month ago

4 Star Rating It is located parallel to the Louvre but on the opposite side of the Seine river. I recommend to go there through the bridge of love. In my opinion it is way better than the Louvre! It has several modern masterpieces of famous artists, and a dedicated hall to each artist. The atmosphere is quiet (as opposed to the Louvre) and relaxing. The only drawback is that there is no English translation to the descriptions of the pictures... so you have to take the audio guides (which don't cover all the exponents in the museum). All in all it is one of the best museum in Paris!!!!!

Artem Aleksandrovich Kost - 1 month ago

Video


Video about the Musée d'Orsay and its focus on the age of impressionism

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