Monthly Archives: September 2015

A quick tour of the Louvre

A quick tour of the Louvre

There are places in the world you simply wish to visit, but there are also places that the world simply makes you want to visit. Some of them are just rumors and reflect tourist “peer pressure”, but there are also some that are simply amazing and popular simply because of that reason. Paris is most probably in the latter category. Shall we take a quick tour of the Louvre?

Volumes can be written about the Louvre Museum and we don’t intend to do that. We’d merely like to say that it is one of the most emblematic history museums in the world, a symbol of France housed in a 12th century palace turned into museum in 1793. Almost 10 million visitors passed through its gates in 2012 alone.

The Louvre was not intended as a museum, but as a fortress for king Philip II. It later became a royal residence before turning into a place of exhibition. Napoleon loved it and increased its collection with outstanding artifacts gathered from all around the world. He also renamed the museum – what else? – Napoleon Bonaparte for a short period.

The most famous exhibit in the museum is Leonardo Da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa”, which might disappoint you a bit – it is rather small and protected by a special glass. The mysterious portrait with a seducing smile has stemmed many controversies. Her identity has been under debate for centuries, but it might also be interesting to know that the painting was also stolen by an Italian in 1911. He claimed he merely wished to return it to the painter’s native country. Anyway, the painting was repatriated and has only left the museum once, when American First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy convinced the French to lend it for a few days to be displayed in a few New York and Washington museums.

The Louvre is quite accessible if you rent a car in Paris, but if you are not familiar with the city, we recommend Paris airport transfers as an excellent transport option.