Louvre or Musée du Louvre, as the French calls it, is the ultimate testament of a congregation by the worshipers of art, culture and history. I admire paintings of various kinds but never have built such a reverence until my love for Louvre grasped in. It is gigantic, filthy rich in the collection and extraordinarily powerful in its architecture. The sheer magnitude of the place is intimidating.
I and my wife’s love for the place made us visit it not once, twice but three times in our six days stay in Paris. The strength of the city lies in its transportation network, specifically the robust metro system which links all parts of the town together. Paris Metro is the fastest way of getting around the city. We were staying in the Denfert Rochereau area, which is a bit far from Louvre. But it took us only 10 mins to get on the metro from the station beside our hotel and reach to Châtelet–Les Halles station from where Louvre is a 3-4 mins walk.
The moment we reached there, we were taken aback by the sheer size of the place. It’s huge. As in the above picture you can see, this is only one side out of the three sides from where you can enter into the Louvre premises. And I’m talking about only the outside part. Inside, there are multiple such architectural building blocks which will astound you. Technically, the museum is housed in the Louvre Palace, originally built as the Louvre castle in the late 12th to 13th century under Philip II. Once we got inside through the gate, we came across a small passageway where an artist was playing the violin and singing ‘shape of my heart’. The setting was so romantic – the sound of the music was weaving in the air, a small breeze was passing through the passageway, and looking at the other side of the tunnel you can identify the center of the museum- the famous diamond-shaped glasshouse. Yes, the first picture of this post is the view that I witnessed after entering Louvre and it was mesmerizing!
I took the above picture inside the museum. Louvre museum has 652,000 square feet of area with over 380,000 objects and 35,000 works of art on display. It’s like the size of 10 football fields. Of course, Louvre is synonymous to Monalisa. Who doesn’t want to see the most famous painting in the world when you’re at this place. It doesn’t disappoint either; at least it makes you feel harder to get. And whatever is harder to get must be exclusive. So, after hoovering around the museum for an hour, we reached to the section the painting was housed. Despite juggling through a crowd of over hundreds of people in a room, we achieved to see that mystic smile standing at least 30 feet away with a 12 times zoom camera of my smartphone. Yes, I have the evidence. But to me, that was not the exciting part. What was intriguing is the security that comes with it – the masterpiece was protected with bullet-proof glass; also, multiple security guards were surrounding the painting. However, what I found most striking about Louvre was the paintings on the ceiling. All the roofs are so ornately orchestrated with artworks that you can’t ignore but adore them. Notably, the ceiling works are exceptional in the Apollo Gallery, which is famous for its high vaulted ceilings with painted decorations.