The Best Way to Visit Paris Museums


Updated by Farah in February 2022 and Vanessa M in June 2023.

Enjoying the city itself is fairly straightforward: you can just wander around without a plan or take a walking tour. If you want to enjoy the Parisian museums however, I truly advise you to plan it beforehand. There are two ways to enjoy the museums in Paris: the tourists’ way (you wait, it’s crowded…) and the Parisian way (secret entrances, avoiding the rush days and hours). Here are some easy tips to learn how to take advantage of the museums in Paris. Consider this article the Parisian guide to get the best experience out of Parisian museums.

Read also; Here are the best inconvertible Museums in Paris

When is the Best time to go to Paris museums?


First, I would recommend going to the museums early in the day, before the Parisians do. Not because Parisians are not nice, but because they love going to museums often, so museums tend to get overcrowded pretty quickly. Sometimes, visiting museums can be a bad experience, because you can’t see the paintings, you’re bothered by the noise, and you can’t enjoy your visit.

Having worked all week, Parisians invade the museums during their only free time: on weekends, especially during Sunday afternoons. So, if you want to avoid the Parisian crowd, it would make sense to schedule your visits to the museums during the week.


But, the museums can still get crowded even during the week and over the summer period, as there are a lot of people. One major point to note is that on Mondays, the Louvre is crowded because the Orsay Museum is closed; while on Tuesday, the Orsay Museum is completely crowded because the Louvre Museum is closed.

The best way to visit Paris museums and to have a quiet visit is to go in the morning before the crowd gets in and you will be able to enjoy your visit to a peaceful museum. If you’re an early bird, visiting a museum at its opening guarantees you a good visit. At the end of the article, you will find a list of museums and the best hours to visit them.


There is also a tip that only a few people know: at least once a week, many museums are open in the evening. For instance, the Orsay Museum closes at 9:45 PM every Thursday. If you go to the museums in the evening, it will be less crowded than in the day and the atmosphere will be much more intimate.

Should I get my Tickets beforehand?


The answer is most definitely “yes“. If you want to save some money and some time, here are some things you need to remember before queuing to get your ticket. In most of the Parisian museums, if you live in the European Union and are under 26, entrance is free. You don’t even have to queue to get a ticket, you just have to show your Identity Card at the entrance and you can get in.

If you know precisely which museums you want to visit, don’t hesitate to ask the seller if there is any pass for these precise museums, because you could get discounts on your visits. Otherwise, there is a pass called Paris Museum Pass which allows you to visit more than 60 museums and famous monuments throughout Paris and its suburbs. You can choose between 3 different packs : 2-day Museum Pass4-day Pass or the 6-day pass.

You can also purchase the Paris Pass with Viator that includes access to all the best attractions in Paris: hop-on hop-off tour, metro tickets and major museum tickets. Read more about this pass!

With this pass, you can also skip the line and you have an unlimited number of visits to the museums included in the pack you pick. However, this pass is useful and the most interesting, only if you know you’re actually going to visit many museums and monuments during your stay in Paris or if you’re addicted to art. If you prefer strolling avenues in Paris to discover the city, this museum pass is not profitable. For instance, for 2 days, to be worth your money, you have to visit more than 4 museums. For instance, visiting Pompidou, Orsay, Louvre and Pantheon would cost you 52€. So my advice would be for you to think about how many museums you want to visit before actually buying a pass.

How to beat the crowd at the Louvre?

Louvre in Paris: beat the queue

  • >> Booking your tickets online wtih Tiqets will save you so much time!
  • >> Pick your admission time

If you want to visit the museums with a guide in your own language, audio guides are often available in many languages. But if you need a tour guide present with you and explaining in your language, museums have guided tours starting every hour for 2 hours visits. Another option is to get your own tour guide that will plan your tailored visit of the highlights of the Paris Museums.

If you don’t want to spend your time doing mainstream tourism in Paris only, the city is full of beautiful museums. Also, you can always focus on a special theme by picking only the museums related to what you want to visit.

Read also; Here are five amazing ideas for Sightseeing in Paris

What are the Two Most Famous museums in Paris?

By Hteink.min – Wikimedia

Musée du Louvre

Opened in the late 18th century, the Louvre is France’s most renowned museum and internationally known museums in the world. It’s the most-visited museum in the world, with more than 10 million visitors in 2018, according to Conde Nast Traveller. Part of a palace complex, it is considered one of the world’s largest museums. An iconic museum, every room in the museum has a lot to offer, from Roman sculptures to da Vinci’s  Mona Lisa and Delacroix’s Liberty Leading the People! You’ll need to plan for a few hours here, plus the wait times — better yet, spend the whole day here, you won’t be disappointed! Check out our article on the Louvre Museum.

Read also; Here are five amazing things you can do at the Louvre Museum

Practical information
address: 75001 Paris, France
Hours: Sat-mon and wed-thur; 9 am-6 pm/fri; 9 am-9:45 pm

Musée d’Orsay – Sourced from their official website

Musée d’Orsay

Housed in a former railway station, this museum is home to a stunning art collection of impressionist and post-impressionist paintings, a vast collection of sculptures, decorative arts such as furniture and architectural elements. It has more than 3 million visitors a year and you can find works by Renoir, Cézanne, Gauguin and Monet here. The museum regularly has exhibitions and shows by different artists or has show around different art history subjects that make this place worth visiting anytime you’re in Paris! Check out our article to learn more about the Amazing Artworks you’ll see at the Orsay Museum.

Practical information
address: 1 Rue de la Légion d’Honneur, 75007 Paris, France
Hours: tue-wed and fri-sun; 9:30 am-6 pm/ wed; 9:30 am-9:45 pm
website: MUSÉE D’ORSAY

The 6 Best Museums to Visit in Paris

Musée de l’Orangerie

Traktorminze, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Orangerie Museum (in French, Musée de l’Orangerie) began as an orange tree greenhouse but today holds an unparalleled collection of impressionist and post-impressionist paintings, including some of Claude Monet’s masterpieces. Although it is smaller than most museums in Paris, the collections are fascinating, and its position in the middle of the Tuileries Garden is ideal.

Another advantage of the Orangerie Museum is that it is less popular and crowded than its neighbors, the Louvre Museum and the Orsay Museum, allowing for a more relaxing and personal visit. Being able to view Monet’s magnificent “Water Lilies”, without being obstructed by noisy tourists as is the case with the “Mona Lisa” is unquestionably advantageous!

Read also; Here are some amazing things you can do at the Orangerie Museum

Practical information
address: Jardin des Tuileries, 75001 Paris, France
Hours: mon and wed-sun; 9 am-6 pm
Centre Pompidou

The Centre Pompidou, which opened in 1977, is an art museum and cultural center. It is the second most visited museum in Paris, after the Louvre, and it includes a variety of stores and buildings in addition to the museum itself. This industrial building, designed by Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, sparked numerous debates before becoming one of Paris’ primary emblems. Today, in addition to being a modern art museum, the Centre Pompidou includes a cinema, the BPI library, several rooms dedicated to painters or sculptors, like the Studio Brancusi, and even a wide range of stores. A must-visit while in Paris!

Practical information
address: Place Georges-Pompidou, 75004 Paris, France
Hours: fri-mon and Wed; 11 am-9 pm/Thu;11 am-11 pm
Musée Rodin

DiscoA340, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

There is no other museum in Paris like it. The Rodin Museum, housed in a beautiful 18th-century townhouse named Hôtel Biron in the 7th Arrondissement, is just a twenty-minute walk from the crowds at the Eiffel Tower. The cream-colored, two-story hôtel particulier overlooks seven acres of idyllic lawns, rose gardens, and rows of perfectly-pruned trees sprinkled with Rodin statues.

Although many consider the gardens to be the main attraction, the recently renovated interior space, with its massive bay windows stretching from floor to ceiling and flooding the rooms with light, perfectly showcases Rodin’s restored sculptures, antiques, and paintings from its personal collection. A visit to the Rodin Museum is the perfect way to spend a relaxing afternoon in Paris.

Practical information
address: 77 Rue de Varenne, 75007 Paris, France
Hours: tue-sun; 10 am-6:30 pm
Musée Picasso

DiscoA340, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Picasso-Paris museum is housed in a spectacular private townhouse, the Hôtel Salé, in the historic Marais area. The architect Jean-François Bodin oversaw the renovations. As a result, there is now an exhibition area worthy of hosting the museum’s contents, as well as an easier visiting path, vaulted cellars in the basement, and attic chambers on the top floor. One goes through this modernized and refined historical setting with passion.

The 17th-century townhouse that has housed the museum since 1985 has many rich heritage characteristics, such as a huge main staircase and sculpted interior décor, and it serves as a magnificent setting for Pablo Picasso’s contemporary art. There were 500 pieces by the master on display. And, with over 5,000 works in its collection, there are plenty of opportunities to witness this exceptional heritage!

Read also; A Visit to the Picasso Museum in Paris: Full Guide to Enjoy Your Day

Practical information
address: 5 Rue de Thorigny, 75003 Paris, France
Hours: tue-fri; 10:30 am-6 pm/sat-sun; 9:30 am-6 pm
Musée de l’Armée

xiquinhosilva from Cacau, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Musée de l’Armée is an army museum with unique collections extending from the Middle Ages to the Modern Era. The museum, located in the heart of Paris, is notable for organizing a fully renovated tour to familiarize you with the historical settings of France’s military. Swords, armor, and coats of arms, insignia, antique figurines, artillery, photography, paintings, and costumes are among the interesting collections at the Musée de l’Armée.

There are regular recreational activities for the young adult population. After the museum shuts to the public, you can join its curators and museum restorers for a glass of champagne to continue your debate or make ideas. Take advantage of this opportunity to offer any further suggestions for the exhibits on display. You won’t be able to do this at many museums!

Practical information
address: 129 Rue de Grenelle, 75007 Paris, France
Hours: mon-sun;10 am-6 pm
Musée de Cluny

The Cluny Museum or Musée de Cluny is France’s National Museum of the Middle Ages and one of the most fascinating museums in Paris. This amazing collection of artworks in the center of the Latin Quarter will wow art, craft, and history enthusiasts. After being closed for seven years for a substantial restoration, it reopened in May and looks better than ever. Plan on spending at least two hours exploring this fascinating museum. The Musée de Cluny, which was built in 1485, is a magnificent example of medieval architecture in Paris. Look at the turrets and the dormers on the steeply pitched roof.

Practical information
address: 28 Rue du Sommerard, 75005 Paris, France
Hours: tue-sun; 9:30 am-6:15 pm
website: Cluny Museum – National Museum of the Middle Ages

More information about the different museums:

  • Louvre Museum: Opens at 9.30 am. Closes at 6 pm. Avoid visiting on Monday, because the museum is closed on Tuesday. Buy Louvre e-tickets (with Tiqets) online (fast-track access).
  • Orsay Museum: Opens at 9.30 am. Closes at 9 pm. Avoid visiting on Tuesday, because the museum is closed on Monday. On Thursdays, it’s open until 9.45 pm. Join our Montmartre Tour that includes skip-the-line tickets to the Orsay Museum.
  • Musée de l’Orangerie: Half a museum, half a monument. This museum is also a must do in Paris if you love impressionism.
  • Musée Marmottan Monet: Focused on Monet’s paintings, this museum is a must do in Paris if you love Impressionism. If you go on Friday around 10 am, the museum should be peaceful without all the crowds.
  • Musée Rodin: A beautiful museum that present to you the works of the sculptor Rodin to you in a beautiful town house at the heart of the 7th district. Closed on Monday, you should visit it after your lunch on a sunny day to enjoy a walk in the garden of the museum. Get your tickets with Viator.
  • Musée Picasso: Open Tuesday to Sundays 9.30 am – 6 pm. In this museum, located in the Marais neighbourhood, you get the chance to see the works of Picasso but also his own collections. Discover Walks runs a Marais Art Tour that includes cut the line tickets to the Picasso Museum. Learn more here! 
  • Musée des Invalides (Musée de l’Armée): This is the French Army museum. Through the evolution of the weapons and of the soldiers’ equipment, you can see the History of the French army from the Roman era to the WWII. I would advise you to go at 3 pm or 4 pm, and you can stroll down the boulevard des Invalides and rest on the grass afterward. Tickets include access to Napoleon’s Tomb.

Read also; 20 Great Things Not to Miss When Visiting Paris

I hope you’ve enjoyed the few tips my article provides! You now know the best way to visit Paris Museums! Enjoy Paris. Enjoy its museums, its art, its history!

See you soon in Paris!

Planning a trip to Paris ? Get ready !

These are Amazon’s best-selling travel products that you may need for coming to Paris.


  1. The best travel book : Rick Steves – Paris 2023 – Learn more here
  2. Fodor’s Paris 2024 – Learn more here

Travel Gear

  1. Venture Pal Lightweight Backpack – Learn more here
  2. Samsonite Winfield 2 28″ Luggage – Learn more here
  3. Swig Savvy’s Stainless Steel Insulated Water Bottle – Learn more here

Check Amazon’s best-seller list for the most popular travel accessories. We sometimes read this list just to find out what new travel products people are buying.

Also check this
Discover the Best Tours in Paris with Local Guides. Check Paris Walking Tours
We run free tours: Montmartre walking tour and Trendy Marais Tour are our best sellers. Free walking tours in Paris