With its incredible collection of world-renowned artworks, the Louvre is the most visited museum in the world and catching a glimpse of its most famous painting, the Mona Lisa, is high on the itinerary of most first-time visitors to Paris. Due to its popularity, the Louvre recommends that all visitors reserve tickets to the museum in advance in order to avoid waiting in long queues or, during busy periods, missing out on visiting.
How to buy Louvre Tickets
Tickets to the Louvre can be reserved in advance (highly recommended). If you can’t secure a ticket in advance, then it can be possible to purchase on the day when the museum is not sold out.
Do I need to buy Louvre tickets in advance?
In short, yes! The Louvre is the most popular museum in the world and visitor numbers are returning to peak levels with over 10,000 people visiting the museum every day.
There are two reasons to book tickets in advance:
The Louvre entry sells out: on some days the museum is listed as ‘exceptionally busy’. On these days, it may not be possible to buy tickets for entry at the museum and you will miss out on visiting.
Long wait times for purchasing tickets on the day: queues for same-day tickets at the museum can be really long – if you don’t possess advance tickets then you will have to join the without-ticket security queue which often snakes many times around the courtyard. After entering the museum, you will then have to join the queue at the ticket desk in order to purchase tickets.
If you are reading this because Louvre tickets are sold out then click here to go straight to the section on securing tickets for reserved entry to the Louvre on sold-out days
Where can I buy Louvre tickets in advance?
We generally use Get your Guide, Tiqets and Viator to purchase tickets and tours on our European travels. There are a few Louvre ticket options to choose from – you can purchase a basic timed entrance ticket which covers entry to the museum, combine with other popular attractions such as a Seine River Cruise or opt for a guided tour of the Louvre.
1 | Timed Entrance Ticket
A timed entrance ticket to the Louvre allows you to access the Louvre within 30 minutes on either side of your entry time. These tickets are often described as ‘Skip the Line’ tickets as you are able to join the security queue for visitors with tickets and, upon entry, there is no need to queue up at the ticket desk – click here for prices !
Timed entrance tickets are also available with an audioguide – click here for prices
2 | Paris Museum Pass
If you’re planning to visit some of the most popular museums and monuments then the Paris Museum Pass is a fantastic option and it includes entry to the Louvre (note: you still need to make a timed reservation for the Louvre). The 2, 4 or 6-day passes include entry to over 50 museums and monuments in Paris and, depending on how many sights you visit, the cost savings can be significant.
We purchased a Paris Museum Pass on a recent visit to Paris and it was such great value as we used it at so many places across the city – it includes unmissable Paris sights including the Louvre, Musee D’Orsay, the Conciergerie Royal Palace, Versailles, the Arc du Triomphe and Sainte-Chapelle – click here for prices!
How to Buy Louvre Tickets tip: you will still need to reserve a timed entry slot to the Louve with a Paris Museum Pass for guaranteed entry on a specific day. It is very straightforward to do but it’s important to be aware of this and check Louvre entry availability if you are making a last minute Museum Pass Purchase.
3 | Guided Tour
The Louvre is a huge museum with over 30,000 works of art on display. Of course, there are some world-renowned masterpieces (including the Mona Lisa, the Venus de Milo, the Coronation of Napoleon and the Wedding at Cana) that most visitors will want to view during their visit – a guided tour is a great way to explore the museum and ensure you make it to all of the highlights.
There are some great Louvre guided tours on offer:
- Louvre Museum Guided Tour with Skip the Line Entrance: showcasing the Louvre greats, this guided tour includes the Mona Lisa, Venus de Milo, Winged Victory of Samothrace and works by Caravaggio and Michelangelo – check tour prices here
- Louvre Entry and guided to the Mona Lisa: this is an awesome option if the Mona Lisa is the focus of your Louvre tour. The tour guide takes you directly to the Mona Lisa and then you can explore the rest of the museum at your leisure – check tour prices here
4 | Timed Entrance + River Cruise
A river cruise along the Seine is extremely popular with visitors to Paris. Some ticket options offer a combination of Louvre entry and a 1 hour Seine River Cruise with an optional extra to add an audioguide for the Louvre – click here for prices
Tickets to Louvre are sold out, how else can I get access to the museum?
Don’t panic! We visited recently during the peak of the summer and the timed entry Louvre tickets were sold out for the duration of our visit and the weeks following. But we were still able to secure tickets!
There are a variety of Louvre tickets and different tour operators and tours are given different allocations of tickets – so even if the tickets seem to be sold out there are likely other chances to secure tickets.
If you need tickets, the best approach is to work your way through this list of tickets and tours until you find the availability you need:
Search for ticket options by date:
We generally use Get your Guide, Tiqets and Viator to purchase tickets and tours on our European travels. Get Your Guide and Tiqets both have an excellent search by date feature which checks all the Louvre ticket options and tours for availability on the date you wish to visit:
- GetYourGuide: check availability on the date you wish to visit by clicking on the add date dropdown at the top right of the page – click here to search ticket/tour availability by date
- Tiqets: there is an option to check ticket and tour availability by date by selecting a day from the calendar at the top of the page – click here to search Louvre availability
For specific tickets/tours, check the following for availability:
Timed Entrance Ticket
- Louvre Museum Time Entrance tickets – check here
- Louvre Museum E-ticket – check here
- Louvre Museum Entrance Ticket – check here
Check the following for availability:
- Louvre Guided Tour with Tickets – check tour prices here
- Louvre Museum Guided Tour with Skip the Line Entrance – check tour prices here
- Louvre Entry and guided to the Mona Lisa – check tour prices here
Visiting The Louvre: Everything you need to know
We’ve put together some common questions that visitors have when planning a trip to the Louvre.
What are the Louvre Opening Hours?
One of the most important things to note about visiting the Louvre is that is it closed on Tuesdays.
It’s really easy to miss out on a Parisian sight due to the weekly closures (for example, Versailles closes on a Monday, as does Musee D’Orsay) so it’s important to plan your time in Paris to allow for this closure.
The Louvre is typically open all other days from 9am to 6pm, except for Fridays when closing is extended to 9.45pm.
The last entry into the museum is one hour before closing and the museum staff start clearing the museum rooms around 30 minutes prior to closing.
Can I buy tickets at the Louvre?
It is possible to buy tickets at the Louvre if there are any available on the day. There are two downsides to purchasing on the day
- Sold out: there is always a risk of tickets to the Louvre being sold out. Only a limited number of tickets are available at non peak times.
- Queues: the queues for same-day tickets take significantly longer than reserved access. Firstly, there is a separate security queue for same-day tickets which often snakes around the courtyard multiple times (a separate queue is available for those with tickets reserved in advance). Secondly, once you enter the museum, you will have to then queue at the ticket desks to purchase the tickets.
How much are tickets to the Louvre?
The price of the ticket varies depending on the purchase method.
How to Buy Louvre tickets tip: Entry is free for those aged under 26 and resident of the EEA (EU, Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein), disabled visitors and art teachers, journalists and job seekers. Entry is free for all visitors on Bastille Day (July 14).
For timed entry tickets, the following costs apply:
- Tickets purchased at Louvre: €15
- Tickets purchased in advance online: prices vary but expect to pay a small premium for reserving a slot as these tickets are generally cancellable up to 24 hours before your visit.
- Guided tours: prices vary depending on the tour and its duration and inclusions
Are there Skip the Line tickets to the Louvre?
All reserved access tickets to the Louvre are described as ‘Skip the Line’ – whether they are described as skip the line or priority access, all tickets are equal. They provide a ticket for a timed entry slot and allow access to a dedicated reserved ticket security line – so while you still have to queue, the reserved ticket security line is typically much shorter and allows much faster entry to the museum. You also don’t need to queue for ticket purchases.
Essentially, the use of ‘Skip the Line’ refers to visitors being able to avoid the extra hours of security and ticket sale queues that arise from same-day ticket purchases.
Which entrance is best to the Louvre?
There are 4 entrances to the Louvre:
- The Pyramid: main entrance accessible to all
- Passage Richelieu: group entry and membership cards
- Carrousel du Louvre: underground entrance accessible to all
- Porte des Lions: closed
The iconic Louvre Pyramid is considered the main entrance to the museum. If you’re entering from the Palais Royal-Musee du Louvre Metro Line 1 and 7 then the Carousel du Louvre entrance is directly accessible and queues can be shorter.
What is the Best Time to Visit the Louvre?
The Louvre is typically very busy so it’s hard to avoid the crowds. With timed entry, we like the earlier slots as there are always fewer people in the museum. Late in the evening towards closing can also be quieter.
If you are visiting with the intention to buy a ticket on the day then later in the evening might be best. Most visitors tend to arrive early in the morning with the hope of avoiding the long queues so it can be quieter in the evening. The Carrousel du Louvre Entrance, the underground entrance with direct entry from the Palais Royal-Musee du Louvre Metro Line 1 and 7, is likely to have shorter queues compared to the main Pyramid entrance.