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We will be in Paris in April - suggestions regarding Moulin Rouge, Louvre & Montmartre?

Any suggestions for the best way to purchase tickets for the Moulin Rouge and how far in advance to do so?

Suggestion for the Louvre - pay for an informative tour (if so, which one?) or use the audio, moving thru in our own timing?

Best walking tour for Montmartre?

We would really appreciate suggestions?

Thank you!

Posted by
10344 posts

Doing the Louvre yourself, with their audio guide, gives you the flexibility to move through at your own pace, you can pick the art you want to know more about.
Rick also has an audio guide, sort of like him taking you around and showing you what he thinks is most important, in a limited amount of time.

However, because the Louvre is one of the largest museums in the world and would literally take weeks or months to see it all, recommend you familiarize yourself ahead of time with where, in which wings and floors, the things of most interest to you are located. For that you'll want to spend time won their website and/or with a guidebook. That will save you time and keep you from being overwhelmed by the magnitude of the place.

What I have done is get the Paris Museum Pass and walk around for an hour two, then take a break in one of the food venues in the museum, then go back to the art for another hour or two. I generally have the Paris Museum Pass, which would allow me, if I wanted to, to even come back on another day (for free), as long as the 2nd visitation is within the time period of the Paris Museum Pass (2, 4 or 6 days).

I think Rick's Paris guidebook also has a walking tour of Montmartre, if you want to do it on your own.

Posted by
6603 posts

Good advice above. We took the Paris Walks tour of Montmartre, learned a lot, and had a good time. You start at the Abbesses Metro, work your way up the hill, and end up at Sacre Coeur where you can explore further or head back down.

The Louvre offers only a 90-minute introductory tour in English, taking you through the "highlights" and, I presume, walking your feet off in such a big place. They have more specialized tours in French if you can handle that. I'd rather do some research beforehand, pick some pieces or styles or periods to focus on, and get the museum's audioguide for more detail on specific objects.

A few years ago I tried to tour the Denon wing with the RS audioguide and had a terrible time because things had moved around since it was recorded. Spent more time looking for objects than seeing them. I think it's been updated but beware of discrepancies!

Hope you find some good info about the Moulin Rouge. From what I've heard I wouldn't go near the place. :-)

Posted by
299 posts

Moulin Rouge is very touristy and overpriced. Try Le Vieux Belleville instead for an authentic experience - primarily French people go there to hear (and sing along to) French classics. There's an Edith Piaf night too. Check it out online.
A tour like Paris Walks would be more fun for you than finding your way in Montmartre using a guidebook.
However. Rick's suggested tour of the Louvre in his book takes you to the highlights, gives you some art history, and I felt was just what I needed to see a couple of hours of its most famous art in a manageable dose. I find audio guides didactic and intrusive - I like to experience the art myself without someone telling me how I should feel about it (in a fake, "cultured" British voice!).

Bon vacances!!

Posted by
8155 posts

Le Vieux Belleville is very very different from the Moulin Rouge. You can see our visit here.
https://janettravels.wordpress.com/2011/10/09/le-vieux-belleville-non-je-ne-regrette-rien/
WE were surrounded by tourists from Belgium, other parts of France etc and their local hosts -- a friendly friendly crew of folks. We were the only American tourists there the night we went. The food is reasonably priced and fine (not a gourmet experience but good basic French cafe food -- I had braised lamb shank which is a favorite of mine). It is a sing along not a can can show.

Posted by
10344 posts

Isn't there a package tour where you do the Paris Sewer Tour, then go back to the hotel and change clothes, then go to the Moulin Rouge? It's a 2 for 1 deal?

Posted by
299 posts

By the way, I found out about Le Vieux Belleville from Jane on her travel blog. Loved it - the accordion player who led the singing was quite a character! Nice to see the French themselves having such fun - they do love the songs of their heritage. Thanks, Jane!

Posted by
10344 posts

It's been a week and the OP hasn't made an official reappearance.
I think they're outa here. May be we should be, too.

Posted by
9 posts

Thank you ALL for your helpful information and suggestions! So very much appreciated................Rick's Forum is great!