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The Louvre is one of the biggest and most famous museums in the world. Amongst the collection you find the most famous portrait ever created: The Mona Lisa. But the Louvre is much more that just the Mona Lisa. The museum was opened in 1793, and is one of the oldest museums in the world. Musée du Louvre draws millions of people each year. The museum is located at 34-36 quai du Louvre, in the Louvre Palace (Palais du Louvre).
Daily except Tuesday: 9:00am to 6:00pm (rooms begin closing at 5:30pm)
Extended hours: Wednesday and Friday, until 10:00pm (rooms begin closing at 9:30pm)
Holiday closure: 1 January, 1 May, 25 December
Pre-holiday hours: 24 December and 31 December at 5:00pm
Daily except Tuesday: 9:00am to 10:00pm
Temporary exhibition: 9:00am to 6:00pm (Wednesday and Friday until 10:00pm)
Special opening hours may be applicable for different temporary exhibitions.
As the museum does not have enough staff to keep the entire museum open on a daily basis, certain rooms are open and closed for only particular day of the week. In order to facilitate restorative works, certain rooms also may not open to visits until further notice. Check with reception for a list of room closure.
Admission to the Louvre is free on the first Sunday of every month for the permanent collection only. It does not include the temporary exhibitions in the Hall Napoléon. Free admission to the permanent collection for all visitors is also available on 14 July and during La Nuit des Musées.
Standard ticket: €9 - all day access to the Louvre, except temporary exhibitions in the Hall Napoléon; also valid for the Musée Eugène Delacroix.
Reduced ticket: €6 - Wednesday and Friday late openings, from 6.00 pm to 9.45 pm, access to the Louvre, except for temporary exhibitions in the Hall Napoléon.
Standard ticket: €11 - valid for temporary exhibitions only.
Standard combined ticket: €14 - valid to the permanent collections and temporary exhibitions in both the Louvre and the Musée Eugène Delacroix.
Reduced combined ticket: €12 - Wednesday and Friday late openings, from 6.00 pm to 9.45 pm, access to permanent collections and temporary exhibitions in the Louvre.
Holder of a valid Paris Museum Pass has access to the permanent collections in Louvre without requiring further queuing.
This pass is also valid to the permanent collections of over 60 museums and monuments in Paris and Île de France. The pass costs €32 for 2 days, €48 for 4 days, and €64 for 6 days. The pass may be purchase from participating museums and monuments, La Civette du Carrousel (the tabac at Carrousel du Louvre), FNAC stores, the Office of Tourism, and the airport's tourist information area.
Acceptable proofs for teachers and youth under 26 years old for presentation at the museum ticket windows:
The collection of the Louvre can be seperated in 8 core collections:
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Mona Lisa is a 16th century portrait by the great Renaissance artist, Leonardo Da Vinci. It is perhaps the most famous and iconic painting in the world, depicting a woman whose expression is often described as enigmatic. It is not a big painting, measuring only 77 cm × 53 cm in size. It is signposted in French as "La Joconde" at the Louvre, as a nod to the official title of this masterpiece - "Portrait of Lisa Gherardini, wife of Francesco del Giocondo".
In this portrait, the woman depicted has her gaze fixed on the observer (while being closely observed in real life by the visitors to the Louvre), with a faint yet emblematic smile on her face. She appears to be seated to pose for this portrait in an open loggia, and the background scenery consists of a landscape that recedes to icy mountains, rivers and lake, and winding paths and a distant bridge. This evokes a sense of serenity and oneness between human and nature.
Mona Lisa is currently located within the museum's Salle des États, having been moved from the Denon wing, and it is displaying behind a bullet-proof glass enclosure that is also climate-controlled in order to maintain the remarkable state of preservation of this painting.
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The Venus de Milo is an ancient Greek statue made of marble, which is assumed to depict the Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of Love and Beauty. Therefore she is also known under the name the Aphrodite of Milos. The statue was found at the ruins of the city of Milos, on the Island of Milos.
At the time of the discovery of the statue a French naval officer happened to be on the island, and uncovered the statue together with its finder, who eventually sold the statue to the French. It was already sold to Turkey, but the French ambassador arrived just in time to persuade the seller to sell it to the French. The statue was found in two large pieces, and a couple of smaller pieces including the left arm, holding an apple. Upon arrival in the Louvre it was however agreed that the left arm was from a later restoration. Also the plinth that came with the statue was dismissed as being real, as by that time most the 'experts' believed the statue was crafted by Praxiteles, but the plinth told them differently, and spoke of (Alex)andros son of Menides being the creator of the statue. Just before the statue was presented to Louis XVIII, the plinth disappeared and was never recovered.
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Also known as Nike of Samothrace, this Greek marble sculpture has been prominently exhibited at the Louvre since 1884 atop the Daru staircase. The sculpture originally formed part of the Samothrace temple complex. This beautiful Hellenistic sculpture is believed to be created in honour of the Goddess of Victory but also to honour a sea battle, most likely the naval victory by Rhodes which at that time was the most powerful maritime state in the Aegean (this evidence indicated by a partial inscription on the base of the sculpture, including the word "Rhodhios").
The Victory, despite its significant damage and incompleteness, exhibits a true naturalistic pose with fine rendering of its draped garments. Its outstretched wings are symmetrical, and with the loss of the head and the arms, in a way act to enhance the statue's depiction of power and pride. The sculpture of the complete Victory was of Nike with her right arm raised to cup around her mouth in the delivery of the shout of victory. While the head and the arms have never been found, other fragments including the right hand and some fingers have been recovered on separate excavation expeditions, and have since been reunited and displayed in a glass case adjacent to the podium where the status stands.
Station: Palais-Royal - Musée du Louvre (Métro line 1)
Underground parking garage: entrance on avenue du Général Lemonnier, open daily from 7.00 am to 11.00 pm
Buses that stop in front of the Pyramid: 21, 24, 27, 39, 48, 68, 69, 72, 81, 95, and the Paris Open Tour bus.
Batobus stop: Louvre (quai François Mitterrand)
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