The louvre

What you may not know about the Louvre

The Louvre is one of the most recognized and renowned museums in the world, housing some of the most famous works of art, including the Mona Lisa.

This museum holds many secrets, including stolen art. While you might not be able to travel to Paris to take an official tour of the museum, here are some things you might not know about the famous institution.

The first thing you will notice about the Louvre is its structure. It wasn’t always a museum. The site where the 16th-century building stands today was once the site of a fortress built in 1190 to help protect the city of Paris. Later in the 14th century during the reign of Charles V, it became a royal residence.

It was razed and rebuilt in the 16th century by King Francis I and, in typical historical fashion, was extended by his royal successors. When the royal residence became Versailles, the building lay abandoned for a century before it was officially opened as the Louvre in 1793 during the French Revolution.

It is also home to another institution: the École du Louvre, which trains individuals in museum professions, with degrees such as archaeology, anthropology, art history, etc.

Another lesser-known fact is that while we call the Louvre “the Louvre,” as if there is only one, there are actually many. The Louvre Abu Dhabi is the newest, having opened in 2017. In Lens, France, there is also the Louvre-Lens, a satellite museum which opened in 2012 with the aim of bringing world-class art to people who don’t have access to it.

The Louvre is also so big that if you spent thirty seconds looking at each piece in its collection of 35,000 exhibits, it would take two thirds of a year to see everything, or 200 days!

To learn more about the Louvre, click here. Travelers can experience the beauty and grandeur of the museum aboard Atlas Ocean Voyages “9 Nights Lisbon to London” or “13 Nights Kiel to Porto” itineraries.