Today is museum day. Don’t be quick to conclude “but i’m not really the museum-going-type” (you’ll likely change your mind after following today’s itinerary. Besides the world-class art, the architecture of these museums are art and it doesn’t take a cultured artist to appreciate. Starting from the Louvre (don’t worry, you can get in without any lineup), we’ll museum-hop through Musee D’Orangerie, Musee D’Orsay, and Musee Rodin, all in one walking trip.
[Skipping major lines – save major time] Get the Paris Museum Pass! — This is the biggest & most useful tip for skipping massive lines in front of major sights, and it pays off after only a few sights as it includes Louvre, D’orsay, Rodin, Versailles, Notre Dame, etc. It can be purchased at the airport, or at tourist information offices in the city.
8:40am: But first, Coffee
Start the day with a delicious shot at this hip and personal cafe steps away from the Louvre: Telescope cafe @ 5 Rue Villedo, 75001. Nicolas, the handsome barista, makes your latte art his personal business. Here you’ll fine one of the better quality lattes in the city, especially in such proximity to a major sight. Don’t forget to pair a croissant with homemade jam.
9:00am: The Louvre
Now is when that Museum pass grants you VIP-like access into the most popular and crowded museum in the city. Take the carousel entrance, through its underground mall, you’ll also pass by the inverted glass pyramid on your way to the entrance. No exaggeration, we walked straight through this entrance with our pass, with no line-up, period. Take your time wander around the Egyptian area on the ground floor, there’s a beautiful and grand open hall which was practically empty. Take Rick Steve’s Paris guide and find a few representative pieces, knowing that there’s no way to see it all.
Walk through the Jardin Tuileries towards Musee L’orangerie. Here lies Monet’s magnificent mural of Les Nymphéas. Then, cross the seine river to Musee D’Orsay, an impressionist-lover’s dream come true. Here you’ll find Van Goh’s self portrait, tons of Monet’s pieces, Degas, Cezanne, Renoir, just to name a few. D’orsay was remodelled from an old train station, the cozy main hall hangs a beautiful clock that insanely resembles the one in the film Hugo. Make sure to head to the restaurant upstairs for a view out of the gigantic clock with windows facing Montmartre.
4:30pm: Musee Rodin
Musee Rodin is undergoing major renovation so the main building is closed for now. Don’t let that discourage you from visiting its magnificent garden, where you’ll find many of Rodin’s infamous work including the Thinker, the kiss, and Gateway to hell. The garden itself is immaculate and filled with roses, as one would by now expect from a French garden.