The Louvre Museum in Paris is one of the largest and most visited museums in the world. With over 38,000 objects on display, it can be overwhelming to plan your visit. Here is a detailed guide on how to purchase Louvre Museum tickets to ensure you make the most of your time at this incredible museum.
Choosing Your Ticket Type
The first step is deciding which type of ticket you want to purchase. There are three main options:
Regular Ticket – This provides access to the permanent collections and temporary exhibits. It is valid for one day.
Night Opening Ticket – This allows entry in the evening on Wednesdays and Fridays when the museum is open late. It provides access to the permanent collections only.
Free Admission – Children under 18, visitors with disabilities, and some other groups are eligible for free admission. Proper identification is required.
In addition, there are guided tour tickets and special exhibition tickets you can add on. Think about your interests and schedule when selecting a ticket. Regular tickets grant you the most flexibility if it’s your first visit.
Purchasing Tickets in Advance
It is highly recommended to purchase Louvre Museum tickets in advance online. Tickets can sell out quickly, especially for peak times. Buying ahead lets you skip the main ticket line, which can be very long.
You can purchase tickets on the official Louvre Museum website. Create an account, select your ticket types and day, and pay by credit card. Print your tickets or download them to your phone. If you have a Paris Museum Pass, which offers entry to many sites, you can also reserve a timeslot online.
Third-party resellers like GetYourGuide and Viator also sell Louvre tickets. There are some extra fees, but they guarantee entry.
If you are unable to buy tickets in advance, you can get same-day tickets at the museum. Go to the Porte des Lions entrance (Glass Pyramid).
Automated ticket machines accept cash and credit cards. The lines are usually shorter than the main ticket counters. Select your ticket type and language, pay, and take the printed ticket.
You can also buy tickets from cashiers at the Porte des Lions entrance. Be prepared for long lines during peak months like July and August. Arrive early to beat crowds if getting same-day tickets.
Using Your Tickets
Present your printed ticket or e-ticket on your phone at the entrance gates. Make sure to have proper ID if you have a discounted or free ticket.
Regular tickets are valid for a single entry from the time of your first scan. You can leave and re-enter during the day. Night Opening Tickets allow a single entry after 6pm.
Once inside, pick up a free map and access guide. Plot your route to make the most of your time. Photography is allowed without flash. Give yourself 2-3 hours at minimum to browse the highlights. Arrive when the museum opens to avoid larger crowds in the late morning.
Here are some additional tips for visiting the Louvre:
– Book tickets for Wednesday or Friday night if you want smaller crowds.
– Purchase a Paris Museum Pass if visiting multiple museums over several days.
– Consider a guided tour to learn about masterpieces like the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo.
– Allow extra time to get through security – lines can be slow.
– Make sure to explore levels -1, 0, and 1 for a full experience. The Denon Wing is very popular.
– Download the app for an interactive map and information on artworks.
– Check the website ahead of time for special exhibits and closures that may affect your visit.
Getting to the Louvre
The Louvre is located in the heart of Paris along the Right Bank of the Seine River. There are multiple options for getting to the museum.
By Metro – Take Line 1 to the Palais Royal-Musée du Louvre stop. Use exit Porte des Lions for the most direct access. The museum is about a 5 minute walk from here.
By Bus – Several buses stop right outside the Louvre. Lines 21, 24, 27, 39, 48, 68, 69, 72, 81, and 95 all have a Louvre stop.
By Bicycle – There are Vélib bike stations throughout Paris. Pick up a bike and park it at one of the racks near the Louvre’s Pyramid entrance. Biking is an easy way to get around the city.
By Foot – If your hotel is in central Paris, you may be able to reach the Louvre within a 20-30 minute walk depending on the location. Consult a map for pedestrian routes.
Taking a guided tour is a great way to learn about the Louvre’s history and masterpieces. Here are some top tour options:
Louvre Highlights Tour – This 2 hour tour in English hits the top pieces like the Mona Lisa, Venus de Milo, and more.
Louvre Small Group Tour – Travel in a small group of up to 15 people on this 3 hour tour covering major works.
Night Tour of the Louvre – Experience the museum at night on this 1.5 hour evening tour.
Louvre Private Tour – For a customized experience, book a private 3 hour tour with your own guide.
Self-Guided Audio Tour – Use an audio guide to explore the collections at your own pace. Audio guides can be rented at the Louvre.
Many tour companies like City Wonders and Viator offer these options. Booking 1-2 months in advance is recommended for availability. Read reviews and check prices to find the right tour for your interests!
Top Artworks to See
The Louvre has a vast collection spanning thousands of years of human civilization and culture. Here are some of the absolute must-see pieces:
– Mona Lisa – Da Vinci’s enigmatic portrait is a star attraction located in the Denon Wing. Be prepared for large crowds trying to get a photo.
– Venus de Milo – This iconic Greek sculpture greets visitors in the Sully Wing and is one of the Louvre’s most famous works.
– Liberty Leading the People – Eugene Delacroix’s stirring painting of the French Revolution is a large-scale masterpiece.
– The Raft of the Medusa – An epic 19th century work by Théodore Géricault depicting survivors of a famous shipwreck.
– The Winged Victory of Samothrace – A Hellenistic sculpture of the winged goddess Nike resides atop a dramatic staircase.
– The Coronation of Napoleon – Jacques-Louis David’s massive painting shows Napoleon’s 1804 coronation in Notre-Dame Cathedral.
– Near Eastern Antiquities – See artifacts like the Code of Hammurabi stone tablet and colossal Lamassu statues.
– Egyptian Antiquities – The Louvre has one of the best Egyptian collections globally, including mummies, hieroglyphics, and more.
Where to Eat Nearby
There are many dining options around the Louvre when you need to take a break:
Cafe Marly – This elegant cafe overlooks the main courtyard with a view of the Pyramid. Reservations are recommended.
La Buvette – A casual spot just across from the museum that serves French classics at communal tables.
Verjus Bar à Vins – An American bistro with small plates and 250 wine options a short walk away.
Girafe – Sit under the Art Nouveau glass cupola at this 2nd floor restaurant in the Carrousel du Louvre.
Le Zyriab by Noura – This new restaurant features modern Lebanese cuisine a 5 minute walk from the museum.
Angelina – Treat yourself to delicious pastries and hot chocolate at this famous tea room nearby.
With this extended guidance, you are fully prepared to plan an amazing trip to the Louvre Museum in Paris. Follow these tips to secure your tickets, see the must-see artworks, and refuel nearby when you need a break. The Louvre deserves a full day to try and soak in all of its incredible offerings. Let yourself get lost in its vast rooms and corridors to uncover some hidden gems away from the crowds. With the masterpieces of the Louvre awaiting you, now is the time to book your visit to what is likely the world’s greatest art museum!