National Museum of Natural
(History Musée National D'Histoire Naturelle)

Musée National D'Histoire Naturelle is recognized as one of the three largest museums of natural history in the world today

Visitors enjoying a hands on exhibit during the Incredible Cetaceans Exhibition at the Museum National D'Histoire Naturelle
Visitors enjoying a hands on exhibit during the Incredible Cetaceans Exhibition at the Museum National D'Histoire Naturelle cc licensed photo by dalbera

The National Museum of Natural History in Paris France was established in 1793 and has a very interesting history that actually predates this. It is said the actual origins of the museum are in the medicinal gardens of King Louis XIII or Jardin royal des plantes medicinales, which were later renamed and modified by King Louis XV to simply Jardin du Roi or the Kings Garden which then enabled the gardens to focus on a broader spectrum of natural plants and later on natural history in general.

From 1739 to 1788 the Royal Garden was run under the direction of Georges-Louis Leclerc, de Buffon who was the leading naturalist of his age, the Royal Gardens survived the French Revolution and was later changed under the Republican Government to the Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle. The original aims of the museum were to educate the public and increase the natural collection as much as possible.

There are a number of branches of the museum throughout France but the main one is still in the original location of the Jardin des Plantes, 5th arrondissement of Paris or Metro Place Monge. The museum is recognized as one of the three largest museums of natural history in the world today and is also recognized legally as the National Reference Centre or the Natural World.

The museum's huge collection is estimated to exceed 60 million specimens from a variety of disciplines including geology, botany, palaeontology, zoology and anthropology.

One of the biggest attractions at the museum is the world famous Great Gallery of Evolution which is an enormous, slightly overwhelming space that houses an incredible array of species and specimens from throughout our natural history. These range from dinosaur skeletons and fossils to extinct species of animals and a very detailed look at how these different species including man have evolved over the years. The museum itself has evolved with the times and presents a number of installations with interactive mediums as well.

Nearby attraction: Jardin des Plantes

Facts For Your Visit

Fee: Yes

Currently Closed

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

Address: 57 Rue Cuvier, 75005 Paris, France

Phone: 01 40 79 56 01

Official Website: National Museum of Natural History (Musée National D'Histoire Naturelle)


Metro / RER Line Nearest Station Walking Time
M7 or M10Jussieu Station5 minutes
M5Quai de la Rapée Station5 minutes

How to get to National Museum of Natural History (Musée National D'Histoire Naturelle) by Metro / RER

By Metro: Exit Metro M7 or M10 at Jussieu Station and go to your left walking straight south along Rue Linne to the entrance via the gate at the southeast corner or exit Metro M5 at Quai de la Rapée Station and go to your right throught the plaza and right again across Pont d'Austerlistz (Bridge) to the entrance gate on the far side of the traffic circle and make your way through the gardens to the entrance.

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Rated 4.5 out of 5National Museum of Natural History Star Rating

4 Star Rating Great place to be if you love animals

Delta - 1 month ago

3 Star Rating Beautiful interior but the lighting is a little too dim for me. Extensive exhibits but a pity there's no English translations. Read up on what you can see before you visit. We bought the most expensive tickets to see all galleries including the temporary exhibition on meteorite as well as the children's gallery. We unknowingly exited the Evolution gallery to see the meteorites. The staff didn't allow us to enter again so we missed the children's gallery totally as it was located inside the Evolution gallery. Quite a disappointment as we only spent 1.5 hour. Directional signs and brochure could be improved as I only realised now that we also completely missed the building showcasing all the fossils and bones!

angeline liew - 1 month ago

5 Star Rating A really cool museum! The building itself also makes it a cool experience, it is cool to look down to the 'animal migration' on the first floor, although the open plan does exacerbate the sound of the groups of school children. There is a comprehensive room of extinct animals and there were lockers to store my huge backpack (I missed my bus and had a few hours to spare).

Samantha Kennett-Ny - 3 months ago

4 Star Rating Great museum with a very large collection of stuffed animals. The modern interior of the building is also interesting. However, it is very unfortunate that most exhibits are poorly lit, and some rooms are practically completely in the dark, making it impossible to see the animals. The sound effects are sometimes too loud and annoying.

Arseni Mourzenko - 4 months ago

3 Star Rating It's a crime that the several museums around this garden have no combined ticket. To see all of them, you need to shell out OVER €30!!! paying separately at each. The greenhouse and mineral display are small and underwhelming, and ENGLISH translations are LACKING throughout. The only one worth the price of admission is the paleontology/anatomy gallery. Just go there; it's amazing.

Dorion B - 8 months ago


Video presentation of the Musée National D'Histoire Naturelle

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