The Louvre Highlights

Make a cultural pilgrimage to Le Louvre, the world's largest and most revered museum of art. Housed in an expansive palace, the Louvre displays over 35,000 works of art, from ancient treasures to modern masterpieces. Explore the palace's 650,000 square feet of gallery space to discover some of the world's most famous artworks, and find your own favourites pieces. No visit to Paris is complete without a tour of the Louvre, which groups its artworks into eight curatorial departments. You can visit galleries specialising in Egyptian Antiquities; Greek, Etruscan, and Roman Antiquities; Near Eastern Antiquities; Islamic Art; Paintings; Sculptures; Decorative Arts; and Prints and Drawings.

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History of the Louvre

Originally a royal palace, and a symbol of the aristocracy's wealth, power and decadence, the Louvre palace was seized during the French revolution, and opened its doors as a public asset on August 10, 1793. This was a year to the date after the imprisonment of Louis XVI, whose royal collection of art was seized during the French Revolution. His collection, and the collections of many other French aristocrats, formed the basis of the Louvre's content. Art was now for the many, not the few: just one of the egalitarian values that formed the framework of the revolution. The Louvre has since withstood several phases of upheaval, like the reign of Napoleon, the restoration, the Paris Commune and the two world wars.

Treasures of the Louvre

In addition to Leondardo da Vinci's famous Mona Lisa, you'll be able to see Monet's impressionist masterpiece Water Lilies, the ancient greek statues the Venus de Milo and the Winged Victory of Samothrace, Eugène Delacroix’s symbolic Liberty Leading the People, and The Seated Scribe, an ancient Egyptian statue dated to 2600 BC.

Visiting the Louvre

The Louvre is open every day except Tuesdays. If you'd like to invest an entire day at the Louvre, it's best to arrive early and wear comfortable footwear. There's a free map available, which will help you find your away around, and over 15 different cafes, restaurants and kiosks where you can stop for a well deserved refreshment. There are a large variety of live guided tours that operate regularly, or you can choose to hire a Nintendo 3DS audioguide. Visitors with smartphones can download the free 'My Visit to the Louvre' app, which hosts 600 comprehensive decriptions of artworks and significant features of the Louvre palace, along with a 3D map, and practical information about visiting the Louvre.

Exhibitions and Events

The Louvre is host to a variety of temporary exhibitions and events dedicated to special subjects, many of which are the product of the latest contemporary research and curation. Admission to most exhibitions is usually included in the ticket price.