Paris will always be one of my favorite cities to visit. There’s so much to do, the food is incredible, and it’s no secret that art is everywhere in the City of Light.
Looking back, some of my favorite memories were exploring the best art museums in Paris, France. Though there are thousands of places to see breathtaking art, below were a few of my favorite spots.
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Musée du Louvre
In this museum, you’ll get to see some of the coolest pieces of history imaginable. There are around 35,000 items on display and you can enjoy paintings, sculptures, and significant artifacts that span history.
My sister and I particularly enjoyed the downstairs exhibit about the archaeological history of the building that houses the Louvre. Before it was a museum, it was a palace. And before it was a palace, it was a fortress. Underground, you can walk around the old fortress walls and see recreations of what it would have looked like all those years ago.
Don’t forget to grab some ice cream, sit in the grass, and enjoy the calm of the Tuileries Garden when you exit.
- Hours: 9:00 AM – 6:00PM
- Open: Every day except Tuesday
- Tickets: Available online for €17
- Free Admission on July 14
- Visit the Official Louvre Website
The Musee d’Orsay is a fine arts museum mainly focusing on the work from France. The building that contains this impressive museum used to be a train station. Natural light pours in through the glass ceiling and the monstrous clock to create a peaceful ambiance.
I’ll never forget entering the d’Orsay for the first time and seeing the huge hall of sculptures under the vaulted ceiling. This is also a great place to see dozens of pieces by some of the most famous names in French art.
- Closed Monday
- Open from 9:30 AM – 6:00 PM on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
- Open from 9:30 AM – 9:45 PM on Thursday
- Tickets: €16
- Visit the official d’Orsay website
Is it a museum or is it my dream home? The Rodin Museum is a charming home filled with art instead of furniture. Sweeping gardens surround the museum and where one would expect a fountain or bench, a Rodin sculpture rests.
Inside, you can see endless paintings, sketches, and sculptures by famous artist Auguste Rodin. Bring a journal, bring a sketch pad, sit with Rodin in the lush grounds and allow yourself to be moved.
- Hours: Tuesday – Sunday from 10:00 AM to 6:30 PM
- Admission: €13
- Free Admission on the first Sunday of the month, October – March
- Visit the Rodin Museum website
Bright colors, huge sculptures, and contemporary art that will make you take a second look, that’s what you can expect at the Centre Pompidou! With over 120,000 works, the Center Pompidou will have something interesting for everyone and offers an incredible look at contemporary and modern art.
The Pompidou is one of my favorite art museums in Paris simply because it is so different! In one room, you’ll find sculptures as big as busses in bright purples and pinks. In the next, you’ll discover a lone strand of Christmas lights hanging on the wall. It’s definitely worth spending a day getting lost in this museum.
Pro Tip: Make sure to go all the way to the top floor of the Pompidou for one of the best views in Paris. There’s an outdoor viewing area where you can see the Eiffel Tower.
- Hours: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM
- Admission: €14
- Free Admission on the first Sunday of the month
- Visit the Pompidou Center Website
Sainte-Chapelle is a gothic chapel adorned with over one thousand stained glass windows. Every wall, floor to ceiling, is a stained glass story from another time.
And standing in the middle of it all, with the light casting multicolored hues on your skin, it feels like stepping into a painting. You become part of the art, and it’s an amazing thing to experience.
- Hours: 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM, April – September
- Hours: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM, October – March
- Admission: €11.50
- Official Sainte Chapelle Website
Final Thoughts: Best Art Museums in Paris
It would take a lifetime to explore all the amazing art museums in Paris, but these options will give you a great place to start.
Here are a few final tips for making the most of your trip.
In Paris and many other cities around Europe, many museums are free on the first Sunday of the month. You can find the full list of which museums are free on which days here.
If you are an art nerd like me and want to spend lots of time in museums, check out the Paris Museum Pass. The pass includes admission to 50 museums and attractions around Paris for one flat rate and can be purchased for 2, 4, or 6 days.
There’s a psychological condition called Paris Syndrome which happens when tourists feel that Paris doesn’t live up to all the hype. But luckily, stepping foot into one of these awesome museums is a sure-fire way to be wowed and soak up art and beauty in one of the world’s greatest cities.
What are your favorite Parisian art spots? Drop me a message in the comments below!