Of all the cities in the world, none have so many museums and grandiose monuments as Paris. Virtually any museum in the capital of France hosts something famous, whether we are talking about abstract paintings, Renaissance sculptures, photographs or perfumes.
Often, from the desire to check out as many museums and attractions as possible, many tourists spend their holidays in a hurry, running from one tourist attraction to another. We recommend that you do not do this. Paris is a bohemian city that offers you amazing museums and boulevards, cafés and superb gardens, and you should not hurry.
Below are some of the best museums to visit in the city of lights:
Louvre Museum. Housed in the Louvre Palace, the former residence of the kings of France, the museum hosts a collection of over 380,000 works of art gathered around the world, dating back to the 6th millenium until the nineteenth century. Among the most well-known pieces included Leonardo da Vinci’s enigmatic Mona Lisa and the ancient Greek sculpture Venus of Milo, but this museum also hosts some surprises, including the Apollo Gallery, a golden chamber designed by Louis XIV, shelters some of the last pieces left of the crown jewels of France.
The D’Orsey Museum. A former railway station, this museum built for the 1900 Universal Exhibition in Paris is a true architectural and artistic work. D’Orsay has a collection of pieces of art dating from 1848-1914, notably with his impressive works, including the works of Manet, Van Gogh, Millet, Degas, Camille Claudel, Renoir, Gustav Klimt and Edvard Munch. Here you can admire works of painting, sculpture, graphic art, photography and, last but not least, architecture.
If you want to save money, we suggest you visit the museum on the first Sunday of the month when access is free of charge.
Pompidou Center. Europe’s largest modern art museum, the Pompidou Center is known for its spectacular temporary exhibitions, often dedicated to the works of a single artist. The place itself is a true work of art. Designed by a team of international architects led by Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, who offered him a capricious and colorful design, the museum building became an iconic part of the capital of France since the twentieth century.
It is the right place to admire the works signed by Picasso, Matisse, Chagall, Dali, Miro, Kandinsky and some of the most popular contemporary artists.
Rodin Museum. Auguste Rodin is one of the most famous French sculptors, and this museum, located in Rodin’s former home, not far from Invalides, contains one of the largest collections of works he has created. The collections are displayed both in the house and in the lovely garden around the house. You will also find a room dedicated to the work of Camille Claudel, the girlfriend and colleague of the famous sculptor, whom some say was even more talented than Rodin.
Museum of Decorative Arts. Taken together (alongside the Museum of Fashion and Textiles and the Museum of Advertising), this is one of the most important collections of design and decorative art all over the world. Located in the western wing of the Louvre, the museum opened for the first time a century ago and reopened in 2006 after a restoration costing around 35 million euros. The exhibited collection consists of about 150,000 pieces, of which more than 6,000 were donated by private collectors. The main focus is on French furniture and on cutlery. From extravagant carpets to delicate crystals and porcelain, there is plenty to admire in this museum.
As you can see, Paris has a lot to offer. Although this list features the most important museums, we encourage you not to forget about dozens of other museums, parks, gardens and monuments to get a complete French experience!