Accessible Louvre Museum Paris
Free entry (companion too),
Accessible Louvre Museum in Paris
The Louvre museum in Paris is HUGE.
To see all 380,000 exhibits, on the 4 floors, of the 3 different wings – you would need to roll your wheelchair/your companion would need to push you –
for 12 kilometres!
You don’t need to cover all 12 kilometeres though, but make sure that your companion is wearing comfortable shoes.
Most importantly though, pick up a Museum Map from the Information Desk.
Why? There are steps everywhere, but an accessible alternative route is usually always available. The alternative route can sometimes be rather circuitous though, and might also involve using a lift (and all lifts don’t stop at all floors). So without a map – you are very likely to get quite lost.
And the bad news: If you had your heart set on seeing the Winged Victory sculpture (Winged Victory of Samothrace), you’re going to be disappointed. To be seen up close and personal, Winged Victory requires climbing steps (the Daru staircase). There are also steps on each side too. But the Louvre’s website has a great photograph of Winged Victory of Samothrace for you to look at instead.
And now the (three) very good news stories for wheelchair using visitors to the Louvre in Paris:
1. Queueing. The main entrance to the Louvre at the Pyramid has 4 different queues. One queue for visitors without tickets, one for visitors with tickets/Museum Passes, one for Louvre members/supporters – and a priority queue for staff (AND disabled visitors – so no waiting in line).
And as the queues at the Paris Louvre are infamously long, this is a major plus;
2. Free entry for wheelchair users and a companion. And as paid tickets at the Louvre are not cheap for most visitors to Paris, again, this is a major plus;
3. The Mona Lisa. The painting itself is a lot smaller than you might think. And, normally, visitors can’t get that close to it (it’s hanging on the opposite wall of a large room).
And the room that the Mona Lisa is located in in the Louvre is always crowded with visitors – just about everyone who comes to Paris and the Louvre wants to see the Mona Lisa (and as wheelchair users view the world from waist-height anyway, under normal circumstances all you would see is the back of a crowd of people).
The wonderful people at the Louvre in Paris realise this though. There is nothing normal about the way that wheelchair users are catered for in the Louvre.
When you reach the room that hosts the Mona Lisa, you will be ushered to a special viewing area – in FRONT of the crowd. So you will be able to really enjoy Da Vinci’s masterpiece – rather than be stuck looking at peoples’ backsides.
Exceptional! And well done to the Louvre for being so proactively brilliant when it comes to accessibility!
Your Museum Map will also show you where the many accessible toilets are located too (but my advice is not to wait until the very last minute before seeking one out – as some of those alternative routes can take a bit of time to follow).
Getting to the Louvre Museum in Paris using Public Transport
Getting to the Louvre museum is one of those rare times when the Paris Metro IS an option. But ONLY if you are arriving at Pyramides station on Line 14! Being recently built (relatively – the completely automatic Line 14 was only opened in 1998), all stations (and trains) on Line 14 are wheelchair accessible.
A number of Paris bus lines serve the Louvre (either stopping on Place du Carrousel or passing nearby on Rue de Rivoli). See the official RATP Bus Map for details.
All 4,500 buses in Paris have an automatic/retractable wheelchair ramp (controlled by the bus driver).
Wheelchair Accessible Taxis in Paris?
G7 are one of the biggest taxi companies in France, and have over 200 wheelchair accessible taxis in Paris.
They have a dedicated telephone number for their “G7 Access” service: +33(0)1 47 39 00 91. Your Paris hotel reception should be only too happy to call them from your hotel – or you can order a taxi on their website (at www.g7.fr), or via their free app.
My recommendation though?
The Louvre museum in Paris is just one stop on the Paris DIY Walking Tour route (which also includes the Arc de Triomphe, Place du Trocadéro, Palais de Chaillot, the Eiffel Tower, École Militaire, Les Invalides, Musée Rodin, Pont Alexandre III, Grand Palais, Petit Palais, Jardin des Champs-Élysées, Place de la Concorde, Jardin des Tuileries, Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel, the Louvre Museum and ending on the Pont des Arts (at sunset?).
As this walk includes most of the “must see” Paris attractions, it’s rather a long walk (just over 8km – about 5 miles). So you may want to do it in two stages? Breaking your journey at the Musée Rodin would be my best recommendation (as there’s a wonderful outdoor café there, to enjoy at the end of the first stage of the walk when split – and the garden in the Musée Rodin is so peaceful that you will find it hard to believe that you’re still actually in the centre of Paris).
Accessible Entrance to the Louvre Museum in Paris
The queues at the Louvre can be rather long at times. But there is some seriously good news for wheelchair-using visitors to the Paris Louvre:
The main entrance to the Louvre (at the Pyramid) has 4 different queues. One queue for visitors without tickets, one for visitors with tickets/Museum Passes, one for Louvre members/supporters:
And a priority queue for staff AND disabled visitors. So no waiting in line.
Free entry is also offered to wheelchair users and a companion. And as paid tickets at the Louvre are not cheap for most visitors to Paris, again, this is a major plus.
So a visit to the Louvre is a definite “must” for wheelchair-using visitors to Paris.
Accessible Toilets at the Louvre Museum in Paris
Again, this is where your Louvre Museum Map is vital. There are accessible toilets located in various locations in the Louvre. And these are indicated on the Museum Map. But more importantly perhaps, it also shows the accessible routes to follow to reach these accessible toilets.
Accessible Cafe/Restaurant at the Louvre Museum in Paris
There are a myriad of places to eat and drink in the Louvre (and also in the gardens – Jardin des Tuileries). Everything from a quick takeaway coffee – to a full-on meal at lunchtime is available in the Louvre.
Your map will indicate where each can be found.
Thank you – and enjoy your visit to Paris!
Paris Louvre News
Get the latest accessibility news from the Louvre Museum, Paris, on their Facebook, Twitter and YouTube social media channels.