Immerse yourself in the Impressionist era of Art by taking a guided tour of the Orsay Museum in Paris, France. Located along the left bank of the River Seine, the Orsay Museum is housed in the Gare D’Orsay, a former railway station, and hotel that was designed by Victor Laloux
The Orsay museum features extraordinary works of art created by French artists between the years 1848 and 1914. A guided tour of the museum will take you past paintings, sculptures, photography, and decorative arts that are synonymous with the Impressionist art movement. In fact, a guided tour is the best way for you to experience everything that the Orsay Museum has to offer!
Advantages of an Orsay Museum Guided Tour
Skip-the-Line Entry and Priority Access
The Orsay Museum is the second most visited museum in Paris; so it is bound to be crowded with visitors and have long waiting queues all-year round. Now, this is where your Orsay Museum tickets will come in handy. With an Orsay Museum guided tour, you can easily skip the line and get priority access to the Orsay Museum on your chosen day and time slot.
Personalized Attention from an Expert Guide
Your Orsay Museum guided tour will be incomplete without an English-speaking expert guide! Experience everything the Orsay Museum has to offer with the help of an expert guide, who will give you his unwavering attention and tell you everything you want to know about the marvelous artworks housed in the Orsay Museum. Customized just for you, the Orsay Museum guided tour will let you experience the Orsay Museum in all its splendor!
Small Tour Groups
The best thing about the Orsay Museum guided tour is that it caters to small tour groups of up to six people as well. This ensures that your visit to the Orsay Museum is a great experience for you! Not only will you save time and be able to cover more of the Orsay Museum during the guided tour, but you will also be able to learn more about the artworks in the Orsay Museum from an expert guide exclusively assigned to your group.
Explore Masterpieces Created by French Artists
The Orsay Museum is home to French masterpieces created by many famous artists of the Impressionist era. The museum boasts an impressive collection of paintings, sculptures, photography, and decorative arts that cannot be missed by any visitor to the museum. Simply put, you will be in the enviable company of artistic greats such as Renoir, Monet, Van Gogh, and many more during your guided tour of the Orsay Museum.
The Best Orsay Museum Guided Tours
Combo Guided Tours
All about Orsay Museum
Choosing the Best Choosing the Orsay Museum Ticket
Depending on your preferences, there are certain ways to choose the right Orsay Museum ticket for you:
1Guided Tour with Priority Access
Gain priority access to the Orsay Museum on your pre-booked Orsay Museum tickets for your chosen day. An expert English-speaking guide will take you on your 2-hour Orsay Museum guided tour, and will cover the most well-known pieces of art found in the Orsay Museum. If you are unable to attend your Orsay Museum guided tour on your chosen day, you can easily cancel the pre-booked Orsay Museum tickets 24 hours before the day of your visit to get a full refund.
You can only enter the Orsay Museum with this ticket. You cannot skip the line or go for an Orsay Museum guided tour with this ticket. However, the ticket guarantees exclusive access to the special exhibitions that are held at the Orsay Museum. Learn more about the current exhibitions being held at the Orsay museum by clicking here, and plan your visit to the museum accordingly. You can even cancel your tickets 24 hours before the day of your visit to the Orsay Museum to get a full refund.
3Combo Tours with Skip-the-Line
Learn about the history of the Orsay Museum and marvel at artworks and sculptures created by the likes of Monet, Manet, Van Gogh, and Picasso at Orsay Museum! Your combo tour ticket provides great value for money by providing exclusive access to three of the most famous attractions in Paris-The Palace of Versailles, The Louvre, and The Orsay Museum. In addition to this, you can skip the line and get priority entry at all of these attractions. Do remember though, that these tickets cannot be canceled or rescheduled.
Orsay Museum Tours Deconstructed - A Typical Guided Tour Experience
Facing the lovely Tuileries Garden, the Orsay Museum lies on the Left Bank of the River Seine. The Orsay Museum, designed by Gaetana Aulenti, is a complex layout of galleries that occupies three main levels. All these levels surround an atrium that is nestled beneath the iconic iron and glass barrel vault of the Orsay Museum.
As you experience the Orsay Museum on your guided tour, be rest assured that you will always be surrounded by masterpieces! Here are a few artworks that you should definitely not miss during your Orsay Museum guided tour.
"Small Dancer Aged 14" by Edgar Degas
Degas’ “Small Dancer Aged 14” is a sculpture of a budding fourteen-year-old ballerina. The original sculpture is made from wax but real hair has been used to craft the hair of the girl. Dressed in a real tutu and ballet slippers, this sculpture is easily one of Degas’ most famous works. After he died in 1917, multiple copies of the sculpture were made. The Orsay Museum contains a copy of the original sculpture in copper.
"The Starry Night" by Vincent Van Gogh
One of the most acclaimed Impressionist artists of his time, Van Gogh painted “The Starry Night” in 1889. His painting depicts the night sky over Saint Remy, with the trees looking like flames of fire and the stars looking like a whirling cosmic phenomenon. The artist created this painting during his stay at the Saint-Paul De Mausole Asylum in Saint-Remy-De-Provence, France.
"Bal Du Moulin De La Galette" by Pierre-Auguste Renoir
Renoir’s “Bal Du Moulin De La Galette,” is an oil painting that is set in an outdoor dance hall situated in the very heart of Paris. Created by the artist in 1876, the painting gives an insight into the life and leisure of the French during the Belle Epoque period-a period often referred to as the “golden age” of France. Made using a vivid color palette and loose brushstrokes, this masterpiece is a must-visit at the Orsay Museum.
"Poppy Field" by Claude Monet
Inspired by the picturesque landscapes around him, Monet created “Poppy Field” in 1873 after moving to Argenteuil with his wife Camille and son Jean. The artist stayed in Argenteuil till 1878, and during his time there Monet achieved a lot of fulfillment as a painter. Monet’s ”Poppy Field” painting depicts a perfect summer’s day with a clear blue sky, strewn with wispy clouds and vibrant poppies lining the field below the sky. In fact, many art critics believe that the mother and child pair in the foreground of the painting is actually Monet’s own wife and son.
"Bazille’s Studio" by Frederic Bazille
Set in the studio that Bazille shared with Renoir, “Bazille’s Studio” provides a glimpse into the relationships and intimacy that unite artists. Bazille is depicted at the center of the painting with a palette in his hand whereas Manet, who is wearing a hat, seems to be looking at the canvas on the easel. Bazille’s friend Edmond Maitre is painted sitting at the piano and just above him is a still life painting made by Monet. The still life painting painted in this artwork symbolizes how Bazille financially helped Monet by purchasing his work.
"Banquette De Fumoir" by Hector Guimard
Hector Guimard is hailed as the leader of the Art Nouveau movement-a movement characterized by the unity of architecture, furniture, and decoration. In addition to this artwork, Guimard also designed the entrances to Paris’ metro. In his “Banquette De Fumoir,” Guimard has painted an asymmetrical bench wherein one leg appears to be a trunk with branches, which curve like vines around the bench.
"Card Players" by Paul Cezanne
Paul Cezanne’s “Card Players” is widely regarded as Cezanne’s most ambitious project to date. The artwork is a series of Impressionist paintings that kept the artist occupied for many years. Each of these paintings depicts two or more Provencal peasants who are smoking pipes and playing cards. In addition to being a wonderful masterpiece, Cezanne’s “Card Players” is believed to have made an important contribution to modern art.
Are Orsay Museum Tours Really Worth It?
Orsay Museum Tours are definitely worth it! The guided tour of the Orsay Museum gives guests a detailed insight into the Impressionist and Post-Impressionist art era. An expert English-speaking guide takes you around the Orsay Museum and tells you all the stories and anecdotes behind some of the greatest French artworks that have ever been created. The Orsay Museum also plays host to different exhibitions that should definitely be visited by visitors to the Museum. Only pre-booked Orsay Museum tickets give visitors exclusive access to these special exhibitions.
Orsay Museum Practical Information
Open from 9:30am-6pm on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
Open from 9:30am-9:45pm on Thursdays.
Closed every Monday, 1st May and 25th December.
Getting to the Orsay Museum
- By Bus: Bus Routes 63, 68, 69, 73, 83, 84, 87, and 94 all stop at Orsay Museum
- By Car: There is no on-site parking at the Orsay Museum. The closest parking spaces are Parking Du Carrousel Du Louvre and Parking Bac Montalembert. Parking spaces are available for people with reduced mobility as well.
- By Metro: Take Line 12 and get off at the Solferino Station to reach the Museum.
- By RER: Take Line C to the Musee D’Orsay station.
- By Taxi: Visitors must stop at Quai Anatole France and then proceed to the Museum.
These tips will make your experience at Orsay Museum even more special!
- Wear a face mask at all times during your visit. Maintain a physical distance of 6 feet from other visitors.
- Visitors should keep themselves well-hydrated throughout their visit. Drinking fountains are available on the riverbanks of the Seine and inside the Museum as well.
- Since you’ll be walking a lot, it is recommended that you wear comfortable footwear.
- Pre-book your tickets for the Orsay Museum. Purchasing tickets online gives you priority access to the Museum within thirty minutes of the time chosen by you.
- Select the ‘Musee_Orsay_Public’ network to connect to the free WiF available in the Museum.
- You can drop off your coats free of charge in the Cloakrooms. You can even drop off small luggage and other items for a compulsory deposit fee. Cabin size baggage (56X45X25cm) is allowed as well.
- Wheelchairs, folding seats, and strollers are all permitted inside the museum. They can even be borrowed from the Museum. However, strollers with metal frames are not permitted.
- The Orsay Museum is easily accessible for visitors with strollers and for people with reduced mobility.
- A baby changing area is located on Level -1.
Yes, visitors must pre-book their tickets for the Orsay Museum Tours. In fact, purchasing the Orsay Museum tickets online gives you priority access to the Museum within 30 minutes of your reserved time slot.
The Orsay Museum arranges guided tours for groups with up to six or fewer six people. All the tours are led by an English-speaking expert guide.
The Orsay Museum guided tour lasts for around 2 hours. Led by an expert guide, the tour covers all the important and must-see pieces at the Orsay Museum.
The Orsay Museum is open for tours throughout the year. However, the Museum remains closed every Monday, 1st May and 25th December.
Orsay Museum guided tours run throughout the day. You need to pre-book your tickets for the Orsay Museum guided tour online. On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, you can enter the museum latest by 5pm and the exhibitions latest by 5:15pm. On Thursdays, the last entry to the Museum and the exhibitions is at 9pm.
Ready to head to Orsay Museum?
Fancy heading out to some other stunning Paris attractions? Take inspiration from our list of the best things to do in Paris here.