The Louvre Museum is a place you will never skip on your Paris city tours. This historically and architecturally rich museum is located on the banks of the Seine River between the Saint Germain l’Auxerrois and the Tuileries Garden. Although it is said that the mummy Belphegor haunts the museum, it is a very popular spot for tourists as well as locals alike.
Your Paris tour guide may tell about the history of this museum while you visit, but it is always better to know some facts about the place before you go there. Given below are some surprising facts about the Louvre Museum you should know.
- Do you know that one day is not enough to explore the entire museum? It might be quite surprising to hear that, for seeing all the piece of art here, it could take up to a hundred days.
- The Louvre was not originally built as a museum; instead, it was actually a fortress constructed in the year 1190, and it turned into a Royal Palace during the sixteenth century.
- The museum was named Musée Napoleon during his reign, and when he was defeated, around 5000 pieces of art were returned back to their original owners. Today, the museum contains 7,500 paintings of which, 66% are by renowned French artists.
- The Mona Lisa is a treasured artifact of the Louvre; it is so famous that it is protected with a bulletproof glass and even has bodyguards of its own.
- As everyone may think, the Mona Lisa painting is not that big. It measures only 53 x 77 centimeters, which is only slightly bigger than an A4 size paper.
- At the time of World War II, the Nazis used this museum as a room for storing stolen art pieces.
- The Louvre Museum is one of the most popular of the museums in the world, welcoming around 15,000 visitors every day, 70% of which are foreign tourists.
- The museum galleries span over 15 acres and are divided into 8 departments. There are 380,000 art pieces in total in the Louvre, however, only a few are on display.
- The glass pyramid you see is only one of the four, and three other glass pyramids surround the Cour Napoleon courtyard.
- There are actually two Louvre museums in the world, and the second one is Louvre Abu Dhabi.