12 must-see museums to visit in Paris


Tourists roaming outside Musee du Louvre.
Tourists roaming outside Musee du Louvre.
Paris is well known for one museum in particular - and one very famous smile found inside - but the city has plenty more to offer than just le Louvre. Explore the rich history and captivating art and artifacts at one of the many top museums in the City of Light.

Musée du Louvre

4 Place du Louvre, 75001, Paris

Arguably the best-known collection of art in the world, a trip to the Louvre is a must to take in both famous masterpieces – say hello to the ‘Mona Lisa’ – and intriguing lesser-known works in the national museum’s extensive collection.

Musée d’Orsay

Esplanade Valéry Giscard d’Estaing 75007

In a repurposed 19th-century railway station, the Musée d’Orsay has a comparatively smaller selection focusing on French artists. Yet it’s easy to become lost in the works of great Impressionists and Post Impressionists like Cézanne, Monet, Degas, Renoir and Van Gogh.

Musée du Quai Branly –Jacques Chirac

37 Quai Branly, 75007

Designed by French architect Jean Nouvel, it features the indigenous art and cultures of Africa, Asia, Oceania, and the Americas.

Musée Guimet

6, Place d’Iéna, 75116

The Guimet is among the largest Asian art museums outside of Asia, and houses thousands of artifacts, including sculptures, paintings, porcelain, and scrolls dating back more than 5,000 years.

Fondation Louis Vuitton is designed by American architect Frank Gehry.

Fondation Louis Vuitton

8 Av. du Mahatma Gandhi, 75116 Paris, France

Commissioned by Bernard Arnault and designed by American architect Frank Gehry, the Fondation Louis Vuitton is on the outer edge of the Bois de Boulogne in the Jardin d’Acclimatation. With its architectural curves, lines and transparency, it is a fine showcase for contemporary art, from the museum’s collection to regular themed exhibitions.

Centre Pompidou

Place Georges-Pompidou, 75004

Catch the captivating modern and contemporary art of Europe, housed in the iconic façade of glass, steel and coloured tubing and with incredible views from the upper floor. Don’t miss the special exhibitions, but get in quick. The museum closes for multi-year renovations in 2025.

Musée de la Vie Romantique

16 Rue Chaptal, 75009

Framed by green shutters, this small but eclectic museum celebrates the great writers and artists of the Romantic period, with artworks, ephemera and artifacts that offer a glimpse into the fascinating cultural and artistic life of the era.

Musée Gustave Moreau

14 Rue Catherine de la Rochefoucauld, 75009

In his original apartment and studio, a vast collection of paintings, drawings, and personal belongings of the Symbolist painter Gustave Moreau are displayed.

August Rodin’s famous sculpture The Thinker in the grounds of the Musee Rodin, Paris.

Musée Rodin

77 Rue de Varenne, 75007

An 18th-century mansion and meticulously manicured gardens are home to the works of the world-famous French sculptor Auguste Rodin, which includes the iconic bronze work ‘The Thinker’.

Musée Jacquemart-André

158 Boulevard Haussmann, 75008

A private collection housed in an opulent Belle Époque mansion that is worth the visit alone, but nonetheless also contains jaw-dropping works from Botticelli, Van Dyck, Rembrandt, and plenty more.

Musée d’Art Moderne de Paris

11 Avenue du Président Wilson, 75116

This museum has contemporary art of the 20th and 21st centuries, meandering through all the main artistic trends and major artists from each period, such as Picasso, Dufy, Modigliani, Derain, Picabia, Chagall and more.

Musée Carnavalet

23 Rue de Sévigné, 75003

Exploring the history of the City of Light itself, Musée Carnavalet occupies two neighbouring mansions. It offers a unique education on everything from Paris’ origins to present-day development.

Musée de Cluny

28 Rue du Sommerard, 75005

Built over historic Roman baths, the National Museum of the Middle Ages houses a collection of French medieval art, including the famous ‘The Lady and the Unicorn’ tapestries, impressive works woven in around 1500.


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