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The Mona Lisa

There’s little that can be said about the world's most famous painting that hasn’t been said before. But don’t miss it...

TravelCurious Tip

Try visiting late in the evening or during lunch hours. The queues can get very long!

Lost and found

The fame of the Mona Lisa only really began in the late 1860s. Critics, reexamining the past, acclaimed Da Vinci’s work to be a masterpiece of the Renaissance and its fame naturally grew. Then, in 1911, it was stolen from its place in the Louvre and became a sensation overnight. The Louvre remained closed all week whilst the investigation continued to no avail: the painting remained lost for the next two years.

During this time, it became legendary. Huge numbers of fakes sprung up in the US and Europe. Eventually its Italian thief, Peruggia, was caught whilst trying to sell it to a gallerist in Florence. He was a patriot who believed it should be on display in its creator’s homeland, not France.


Smile

In 2012, John Lichfield, writing in the Independent, described it as ‘the best known, the most visited, the most written about, the most sung about, the most parodied work of art in the world.’ It depicts a simple scene; the subject, Lisa Gherardini, sits with her hands crossed in her lap. The fascination stems from the complex expression caught on her face, which invites the audience into silent conversation with the subject. It’s difficult to leave her gaze, or decide whether or not a hint of a smile adorns her lips.

Another point of surprise is its size. The Mona Lisa only 77 by 53 centimetres, which makes it difficult to get a good view in a crowded room.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in Paris
The Louvre
The Louvre is the biggest museum in the world. Inside you’ll find the jewels of every civilisation since prehistory.
The Venus de Milo
This Ancient Greek statue depicting Aphrodite of Milos is possibly the world's most acclaimed marble masterpiece.
The Victory of Samothrace
The Winged Victory of Samothrace is a must-see in the Louvre: a paradigm of Greek beauty, the archetype of Hellenistic sculpture.
Notre Dame des Victoires
A Marian church, Our Lady of Victories, was first built during the reign of the Bourbon kings, and reign of Louis XIII laid the foundational stone.
Jardin du Palais Royal
Once the home of Philippe duc d’Olreans, King Louis XIV’s brother, the architectural masterpiece found itself at the center of lavish spending and ample scandals.
Paris Musee D'Orsay
One of the largest art museums in Europe, placed in the centre of Paris on the banks of the Seine, opposite the Tuileries Gardens, installed in the former Orsay railway station, built for the Universal Exhibition of 1900. The museum holds mainly French art dating from 1848 to 1914, including paintings, sculptures, furniture, and photography. It houses the largest collection of Impressionist and post-Impressionist masterpieces in the world.

Related Tours

Private Guided Louvre Tour with skip-the-line tickets
The artistry and architecture of Paris is phenomenal, and there is no place better to gain a sense of this than the Louvre. Throughout this private tour, your guide will talk to you about the history and culture of individual artists and their artwork. 

  • Meet your guide at a location of your convenience.
  • Visit the  most impressive and influential art museum in the world.
  • See the key attractions: from the Mona Lisa to the Venus de Milo.
  • Learn about art history from your expert guide.
  • Wander through a labyrinth of 300 rooms and uncover some hidden gems.
  • Plenty of time to explore the museum after your tour.
From Palace to Museum

Originally one of France’s most lavish royal palaces, and home to some of the most ostentatious Kings of France, the Louvre has fast become the world's most impressive and influential museum of art in the world, and is an absolute must for anyone with an interest in art. During this tour around the Louvre, you will journey through one of the most expansive and beautiful art collections in the world. Here you will see some of the museum’s greatest works that span from 450 BCE to the 19th century.  

Three Grand Ladies

Whilst visiting this fabulous museum you will have the pleasure of viewing the most celebrated of all the Louvre’s treasures: 'Three Grand Ladies'- the Venus de Milo, Nike of Samothrace, and Leonardo’s Mona Lisa. Your guide will  discuss the fascinating stories that surround these influential and important works of art. After your guided tour, feel free to further explore the vast museum and its beautiful work at your own pace. 
Treasures of the Louvre for Kids
The artistry and architecture of Paris is phenomenal, and there is no place better to gain a sense of this than the Louvre. Throughout this private tour, your guide will talk to you about the history and culture of individual artists and their artwork.  Even the kids will be kept engaged!

  • Child-friendly expert guide for you and your family.
  • Meet your guide at a location of your convenience.
  • Visit the most impressive and influential art museum in the world.
  • See the key attractions: from the Mona Lisa to the Venus de Milo.
  • Plenty of fun facts and engaging stories to interest the kids.
  • Wander through a labyrinth of 300 rooms and uncover some hidden gems.
  • Adapt your itinerary on the day to suit your needs with your relaxed, no-stress tour guide.

From Palace to Museum

Originally one of France’s most lavish royal palaces, and home to some of the most ostentatious Kings of France, the Louvre has fast become the world's most impressive and influential museum of art in the world, and is an absolute must for anyone with an interest in art. During this tour around the Louvre, you will journey through one of the most expansive and beautiful art collections in the world. Here you will see some of the museum’s greatest works that span from 450 BCE to the 19th century.
  
Three Grand Ladies

Whilst visiting this fabulous museum you will have the pleasure of viewing the most celebrated of all the Louvre’s treasures: 'Three Grand Ladies'- the Venus de Milo, Nike of Samothrace, and Leonardo’s Mona Lisa. Your guide will  discuss the fascinating stories that surround these influential and important works of art. After your guided tour, feel free to further explore the vast museum and its beautiful work at your own pace. 
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