A Guide to The Louvre

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The Louvre Museum in Paris, France is a must-do when you’re visiting Paris. I plan on going back again and again because there is so much to see and it’s truly a gorgeous museum. Here’s a quick guide to visiting the Louvre, from the tickets I recommend, to what you can expect with crowds and lines and other tips! Plus, many photos shared throughout of the stunning artwork. 

The Tickets I Recommend for Visiting the Louvre

We went with Fat Tire Tours Skip-the-Line Tickets and Audio Guide. (Full disclosure: Not sponsored!) I just found their website user friendly, the prices reasonable and the many reviews/ratings encouraging. The tickets and audio guide for this tour are picked up nearby the Louvre. The pick-up location was in walking distance to the Louvre and easy to find.
I prefer self-guided audio tours over the regular guide because I can stay as long as I want in one section or hurry through to another. And I really liked having the audio guide. The information was insightful and the tour took us through a path that hit many of the popular pieces of artwork.

Here’s what the audio guide and map look like. You’ll have the audio guide to listen to and it interacts with the map shown below. You’ll simply point the audio guide to the number on the map and it plays a short piece on the art you’re looking at. You can replay parts as well and skip or move back if needed.

 

 

The Crowds and Lines at the Louvre

Out of our entire trip to Paris, this experience was the most crowded. We got there at opening time with a skip-the-line ticket. We would have liked to have been there before opening time to start queuing, however, we had to pick up our audio guide + tickets from down the street and that shop didn’t open until the same time. Not a big deal, but it could have saved us some time.

However, even though we joined the line just around opening time, we still only waited 20 minutes to get inside. It feels like so long when you’re waiting and excited, but you have to remind yourself to not rush and be realistic. 20 minutes is nothing. By the time we were inside for an hour I peaked out on of the windows and the line was probably quadruple what it was when we started.

Do not bring any large bags, luggage or backpacks. They are not allowed. I brought my small crossbody purse (just $13! get it here) and my small camera bag.

We entered at the pyramid entrance because that is where our tour noted for us to enter. However, there are other entrances where the lines will possibly be shorter.

Keep scrolling for more photos of the path we took through the museum and tips regarding the Mona Lisa and more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Mona Lisa

As I mentioned above, the Louvre itself was our most crowded experience in Paris and the area near the Mona Lisa was the most crowded within the Louvre. It absolutely doesn’t live up to the hype. It’s one painting in a museum with countless amazing pieces of art. It is a great painting and the stories around it are interesting; however, you might be disappointed if you’re incredibly hyped up about the Mona Lisa as the highlight of your tour of the Louvre.
It will be surrounded by rows and rows of people jostling into each other and taking selfies in front of the painting. Since I’m short, I moved a little closer into the crowd, but I could only get the picture below by lifting my arms up and using my cell phone. LOL. Essentially, what I’m saying is, be mentally prepared for the crowds, grab your photo, and move on to all the other amazing art here. Here’s my grainy iPhone photo below:

 

Other Tips

  • It gets HOT in some of the rooms. Wear layers and bring a small bottle of water since you’ll be doing a TON of walking.
  • Beware of pick-pockets. I used a zippered purse that I kept to the front of my body the entire time I was there. My camera was around my neck or in my bag with the strap around my body so it would have been hopefully more challenging for someone to steal from me.
  • Have a plan. Whether you go with a traditional guide, audio guide or no guide at all, you’ll want to have a plan for your visit. There is so much to see that it’s impossible to do it all on one trip. If you’re not going with a guide, then plan out a path that works for you and make sure to keep a map handy.

Have you ever visited the Louvre? What was your favorite part? 

A travel guide to visiting the Louvre museum in Paris. The Louvre is a must-do experience when visiting Paris. Keep reading for tips on how to skip the line, see the Mona Lisa and avoid the crowds.

 

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