Grand Louvre, the World’s largest art museum, attracts more than 10 million visitors annually.
And since the Parisian Museum is open only six days a week, that’s more than 30,000 visitors every day.
Louvre Museum decided to stretch their evening hours into the night two days a week to cater to this demand.
As a result, many locals and tourists visit the Louvre after dark.
Table of contents
- Louvre Museum at night or day
- Louvre night hours
- Louvre Pyramid at night
- Entrance for a night visit to Louvre
- Night tours at Louvre Museum
- Louvre private night tour
- Louvre night tour and wine tasting
- Louvre restaurants at night
- FAQs about visiting Louvre at night
- Louvre White Night
Louvre Museum at night or day
Some tourists say that visiting the Louvre at night is better than during the day.
If you have a choice, we recommend you check out the Louvre after dark.
We present five reasons visitors usually mention as an argument in favor of a night visit.
1. Smaller crowd leads to better experience
Louvre Museum is notorious for its long daytime lines.
When you buy your Louvre entry tickets online, you can avoid standing for hours in the ticket line.
But you still have to go through the security check along with the other visitors.
Fewer tourists at night help you enter the Museum faster.
With fewer people crowding the masterpieces, you can spend more time with popular exhibits such as the Mona Lisa, The Winged Victory of Samothrace, Venus de Milo, etc.
Did you know that Mona Lisa at Louvre Museum gets the maximum number of visitors?
2. The glass pyramid is at its best
While the Louvre Pyramid does have its charm during the day, its allure becomes manifold at night.
This modern structure stands amid the historic buildings and seems to cast a magic spell on every visitor.
The glass pyramid lights up at sunset, which means the timing varies.
During winter and autumn, when nightfall is earlier in the day, the pyramid lights up early, allowing the visitors to enjoy the splendor for a longer duration.
Before visiting, find out everything about Glass Pyramid at Louvre Museum.
3. The Courtyard is a cool hangout place
After dark, as soon as the pyramid lights up, the Museum’s Courtyard (also known as Cour Napoleon) becomes an exciting hangout for locals and tourists.
We recommend you finish your Museum visit and then hang around for as long as you want.
Since the Louvre Courtyard isn’t closed, tourists and locals continue to enjoy the surroundings until late in the night.
The Louvre Courtyard with the pyramid in the background is also a great photo opportunity.
4. Viewing experience doesn’t change
Many think that the Louvre Museum uses natural light (because of all the glass pyramids!) during the day, and the artificial lights used at night diminished the art-viewing experience.
This is not true.
Very few Louvre galleries have natural lighting during the daytime.
During your night visit to the Louvre, you enjoy the stunning paintings, sculptures, and other exhibits as well as you would during the day.
5. Pack more in a Parisian day
Visiting the Grand Louvre at night leaves you with your whole day for other Parisian activities.
You can either have a hectic afternoon, get to your hotel, rest for a while, and then land up at the Louvre.
Or you can check out a few attractions near the Louvre, re-energize yourself at a nearby restaurant, and reach Louvre for your dose of world-class art.
Louvre night hours
From Wednesday to Monday, the Louvre Museum opens at 9 am.
On Mondays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays, the art museum closes early at 6 pm.
On Wednesdays, and Fridays Louvre’s evening hours end at 9.45 pm.
On Tuesdays, the Louvre Museum remains closed.
Louvre on Wednesday night
On Wednesdays, the Louvre Museum closes at 9.45 pm.
If you are an art enthusiast and would love to take your time with every masterpiece at the art museum, it is best to visit on a Wednesday night.
Wednesday nights attract fewer crowd because of two reasons:
- Since it is the middle of the week, locals are busy with their work
- The weekenders from nearby cities and countries usually land up on Fridays
Many visitors wonder if there are special Louvre Wednesday night tickets.
Well, no. You can book the regular Louvre Museum ticket for a Wednesday night.
Louvre on Friday night
Louvre Museum’s Friday night hours are till 9.45 pm.
If you have a choice, it is better to plan a night visit on a Wednesday. Else, Fridays are good too.
Wednesdays are better because Friday gets a bit crowded because of the free entry.
Louvre Friday night free
Fridays are also known as Louvre free nights.
Every Friday from 6 pm to 9.45 pm, entry to the Louvre Museum is free for all visitors under 26.
If you qualify for the above condition, you don’t need to buy tickets for Friday night admission to the Louvre.
Just reach the Pyramid entrance with a valid photo ID, and you will be allowed to enter.
Others require an entry ticket.
Visitors with free entry all the time
For the below-given visitors, admission to the Louvre is ALWAYS free, which means all night visits are also free:
- Visitors under the age of 18
- 18 to 25 years old residents of the European Economic Area (EU, Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein)
- Teachers of art, art history, and the applied arts
- Visitors with disabilities and the person accompanying them
Louvre on Saturday night
On the first Saturday of the month, Louvre Museum closes at 9.45 pm, and on the rest of the Saturdays, it closes at 6 pm.
Louvre entry is free for all visitors on the first Saturday of each month from 6 pm to 9.45 pm.
Unlike the free entry on Fridays, the Louvre free entry on Saturdays doesn’t have an age limit. Everybody can walk in for free.
*The same applies to Bastille Day as well, which falls on 14 July.
Louvre Pyramid at night
The large glass pyramid was built as part of the 1989 re-design of the Louvre Museum and now serves as the main entrance.
Along with Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe, it is one of Paris’ most recognizable landmarks.
The glass pyramid lights up at sunset, becoming a luminous icon welcoming all art lovers.
After dark, people hang around the glass structure or take photographs of the lit pyramid from different angles.
Tourists who have spent time hanging around the Louvre Pyramid at night say it is both mentally stimulating and romantic at the same time.
Here are some photographs of the Louvre pyramid at night:
The lights from the Louvre at night almost make it look like a different attraction.
Entrance for a night visit to Louvre
The Louvre has three entrances – the Pyramid entrance, the Carrousel entrance, and the Porte de Richelieu entrance.
1. Louvre Pyramid entrance
The glass Pyramid is the main entrance to Louvre in Paris and is known as the Le Pyramide entrance.
At night this Louvre Museum entrance offers a much better experience than the others.
2. Louvre Carrousel entrance
The Carrousel du Louvre is an underground shopping complex situated next to The Louvre.
Since this entrance is next to the Inverted Pyramid, it is also known as the ‘inverted Pyramid entrance.’
If you are reaching by Metro, it is best to enter the Museum by the Louvre Carrousel entrance.
In such a case, once you have explored the Louvre Museum’s exhibits, you can exit by the Pyramid entrance and spend time in Louvre’s Courtyard.
Tip: On Line 1 and 7, the Metro stop for Louvre Museum is ‘Palais Royale-Musee du Louvre’
3. Porte De Richelieu entrance
This Louvre entrance is right in front of the Glass Pyramid.
To spot the Richelieu passage, look for Louis the XIV’s Equestrian Statue, located in front of the Louvre pyramid.
The best entrance for a night visit
During your Louvre night visit, you can use any of these three entrances.
However, our favorite is the glass pyramid entrance, and our second preference is for the Richelieu entrance.
If you arrive by a Metro, get in through the Louvre Carrousel entrance but get out through the glass Pyramid.
Some tourists visit Eiffel Tower and Louvre Museum on the same day. If you also plan to do the same, follow the links for directions:
– From Eiffel Tower to the Louvre Museum
– From Louvre Museum to Eiffel Tower
Night tours at Louvre Museum
There are no specific Louvre Museum night tickets.
Instead, you need to plan your visit according to the sunset times in Paris.
Because of the geographical location of France, sunset in Paris varies a lot all through the year.
Half an hour from when the sunset begins, the city gets dark, and then lights start coming up.
*The sunset times provided in the table are approximated.
If you plan to visit on Wednesday or Friday, you can book the regular Louvre Museum ticket for time slots after 6 pm – the Museum is open till 9.45 pm.
If the lights aren’t on when you enter the Museum, they would definitely be on by the time you get out from the Louvre Pyramid exit.
By the time it is dark, the pyramid and the Louvre buildings are shimmering in golden light.
On other days, the art museum closes at 6 pm, which means you must enter by at least 4 pm to give yourself two hours of exploration.
If you are in Paris between November to February, you will see the pyramid all lit up when you exit the art museum.
But on other months, since the sunset is later, you may have to head out for some dinner and then get back to the Louvre Courtyard for stunning views.
Louvre private night tour
This private tour is available throughout the day, but if you book it around 7 pm (or 7.30 pm) on a Wednesday or Friday, it doubles up as a private night tour of the Louvre.
During this 90 minutes tour, an art expert takes you around Louvre masterpieces such as the Mona Lisa, Venus de Milo, etc.
After that, you can hang around inside the Museum or outside for as long as you want.
This private tour is limited to six participants and can be canceled 24 hours in advance for a full refund.
Tour price: 200 Euros for up to six participants
If you prefer the same Louvre night tour but want the art expert to be with you for two hours, check this out.
Follow the link to find out more about private guided tours at Louvre Museum.
Louvre night tour and wine tasting
There is no specific tour that combines the Louvre Museum’s night charm and the exquisite wines of Paris.
However, if you want to enjoy both, we recommend the Skip-The-Line Louvre Access and Wine Tasting Tour.
This four-hour tour starts at 2 pm, with a visit to the Louvre.
Since it is a skip the line ticket, you avoid waiting in the lines and start appreciating the art right away.
After two hours, just as the art fatigue is setting in, your guide takes you to the Caves of Louvre (Les Caves du Louvre).
It is less than five minutes walk from the Louvre.
The Caves of Louvre is a Parisian wine attraction built in the 18th century by Trudon, the wine steward of King Louis XV.
Once you have learned about the wines and tasted three different varieties with a knowledgeable sommelier, you can step out and head towards The Louvre.
In five minutes, you can be in the Louvre’s Courtyard, where you can hang around till it gets dark and the Louvre buildings and the Pyramid light up.
Children 15 and younger are complimentary.
Tour price: 75 Euros per person
If you are interested in Parisian wine, check out the below-given wine tours as well:
Louvre restaurants at night
There are around 15 cafes, restaurants, and takeaway outlets in the Louvre, offering table service and takeaway food.
But only two of them remain open beyond 6 pm – Starbucks and The Comptoir du Louvre.
At Comptoir du Louvre you can get a selection of PAUL sandwiches, salads, and pastries, ideal for a light bite.
Both of the restaurants are under the Glass Pyramid.
Don’t have the budget or inclination to visit both the Parisian art galleries? Check out our comparison of the Louvre Museum and Musee d’Orsay.
FAQs about visiting Louvre at night
People planning a night trip Louvre have lots of questions. We try to answer some of them here:
- Is the Louvre Museum lit up at night?
Yes, both the Glass Pyramid and the other Louvre buildings light up at sunset.
The timings depend on the time of the sunset.
- What to wear while visiting Louvre at night?
Louvre doesn’t allow visitors to wear swimsuits or be naked, barefoot, or bare-chested.
If you are visiting in summer, the casual clothes you are comfortable in should be perfect.
If you are visiting in winter, it is best to wear your heavy coats and jackets.
The galleries are adequately heated, and most of the visitors won’t need warm clothes once inside.
Visitors who don’t prefer carrying their winter wear bring a backpack to keep them in the locker space.
- Is there a Louvre night and day ticket?
Unfortunately, there is no Louvre night and day ticket.
However, if you book the regular Louvre admission ticket for time slots closer to the sunset, you can experience it day and night.
- Is taking photographs of the Louvre Pyramid at night illegal?
No, taking photographs of the beautiful glass pyramid of the Louvre at night is not illegal.
That copyright rule applies to night photographs of the Eiffel Tower. But even then, nobody ever gets arrested for taking pictures of the Tower after dark.
- Is the Louvre safe at night?
Louvre and the area around Louvre is one of the most touristy spots of Paris and is as active during night time as it is during the day.
Louvre is perfectly safe to visit at any time of the night.
Louvre White Night
The White Night, also known as Nuit Blanche, is an annual event that gets Parisians and tourists excited.
During Nuit Blanche, a French expression for an all-nighter, many art museums are open till late at night.
Most of the Museums are free as well.
Nuit Blanche isn’t just about visiting art galleries. You also see various performances and art installations all around.
Nuit Blanche is usually held in October, just as the days start getting shorter. In 2021, it is on 2 October.
Public transportation stays open all night, helping the art patrons hop around the city and visit different museums.
On a Nuit Blanche, the locals are sure to outnumber the tourists.
Popular attractions in Paris
# Louvre Museum
# Eiffel Tower
# Arc de Triomphe
# Palace of Versailles
# Disneyland Paris
# Musee d’Orsay
# Centre Pompidou
# Notre Dame
# Paris Zoo
# Sainte Chapelle
# Montparnasse Tower
# Picasso Museum
# Catacombs of Paris
# Opera Garnier
# Seine River Cruise
# Seine Dinner Cruise