The Orsay Museum (Musée d'Orsay), located on Paris's Left Bank in a repurposed Belle Époque train station overlooking the Seine, sometimes gets overshadowed by the much larger and more famous Louvre Museum just across the river. 

But the Orsay's many treasures absolutely earn it a spot on your Paris "bucket list" - in fact, many visitors say it's their favorite museum in the city. 

The Orsay is where you'll see the world's best collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist art - masterpieces by Vincent Van Gogh, Claude Monet, Paul Cézanne, Édouard Manet, Edgar Degas, Paul Gauguin, Pierre-August Renoir, and other famous artists.

Plus, you'll find a lot more to see and do here in addition to the art, including a few surprises. 

So take a look at our recommendations for 7 cool things to see and do at the Musée d'Orsay.  You'll thank us!

Musee d'Orsay, from the ground floor up; the museum's entrance stairs are under the clock
Musee d'Orsay, from the ground floor up; the museum's entrance stairs are under the large golden clock; the elegant ground floor is where 16 electrified tracks ran during the building's previous life as a fin-de-siécle train station and luxury hotel built for the 1900 Paris International Exposition

What's the best way to visit the Orsay Museum?

Especially if this is your first visit to Musée d'Orsay, a semi-private or private tour led by an expert guide will bring the art to life for you and helping you make the best use of your time in Paris by leading you to the most important exhibits. 

Traveling with kids?  This private guided tour for families makes sure everyone has a great experience.

Prefer to go on your own?  Save time by getting a reserved-access ticket online. 

If you have a Paris Museum Pass, you can enter free - just reserve your date and time slot online.

Top photo:  Musée d'Orsay, (c) Paris Discovery Guide

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7 Cool Things to See & Do at Musée d'Orsay

1.  Feel Dazzled by the Orsay Museum's Most Iconic Art

Impressionist artist Claud Monet's "Blue Water Lilies," inspired by water lilies growing in his pond at his home in Giverny; painted between 1916 and 1919
Impressionist artist Claude Monet's "Blue Water Lilies," inspired by water lilies growing in his pond at his home in Giverny; painted between 1916 and 1919

To experience the mesmerizing interplay of colors, light, and shapes on canvases by Impressionist and Post-Impressionist artists, head straight to the galleries on the museum's 5th level where you'll find room after room filled with stunning masterpieces. 

Visitor Tip:  Curators at the Orsay move and swap out some of the art daily, and even large displays such as Impressionist paintings can shift to different floors.  Take one of the free museum brochures as you enter if you want to know current locations of collections, and ask at the Reception Desk if you need more specific information.

Still lifes of flowers in vases painted by Cezanne (the two on the left) and Monet (right)
Still lifes of flowers in vases painted by Cezanne (the two on the left) and Monet (right)

These are the paintings that rightfully make the Orsay famous, as the crowds of fans surrounding the photos demonstrate, so for some paintings - almost anything by Van Gogh, for example - you'll need patience to get a good view. 

But the effort is worth it. 

Starry Night Over the Rhône, painted by Vincent van Gogh in 1888
"Starry Night Over the Rhône," painted by Vincent van Gogh in 1888, the first in a series of paintings in which he attempted to capture the color of light at night even as he succumbed to psychotic episodes culminating in severing part of his left ear with a razor, spending time in psychiatric hospitals, and fatally shooting himself in the chest with a revolver

No matter how many times you may have seen photographs or prints of these paintings, the experience of viewing the originals is so much better.  A camera can't adequately capture the nuances of color, reflections of light, and the 3-dimensionality of brush strokes on canvas you'll see in real life. 

The Orsay's lighting is superb, and the museum lets you to get up close to these masterpieces without risking the embarrassment of setting off the alarm system. 

Gustave Caillebotte's 1875 painting The Floor Sanders
Gustave Caillebotte's 1875 painting "The Floor Sanders" ("Les raboteurs de parquet") combines the realism and subdued tones approved by the French Academy with the use of light and and more naturalistic poses (note how the workers appear to be chatting with each other) favored by Impressionists

Today, Impressionist art in no way seems radical or even innovative because we're used to it - it's part of our cultural landscape.  Even if we don't view Renoirs or Monets on a daily basis (and how many people do?), we see their influence in colorful, light-filled images on greeting cards, advertisements, and Instagram.

But when Impressionism burst upon the Parisian cultural scene in the early 1860s after a group of young French painters including Monet, Renoir, Alfred Sisley, and Frédéric Bazille plus the somewhat older Édouard Manet rebelled against the rigid constraints of "Academic" painting then in vogue, the establishment artists felt rocked to their core.

Renoir Seascape
Renoir Seascape

For over 3 centuries, the French Académie des Beaux-Arts defined what art should look like by blocking "deviant" artists from showing their work at the prestigious annual Salon de Paris art show, a source of coveted prizes, commissions, and publicity.

The Academic style favored by the Academy favored realistic depictions of historical or mythological scenes, preferably in mostly dark colors often topped with a yellowish-brown glaze. 

In contrast, Impressionist artists embraced brighter, lighter colors with spontaneous (vs controlled) brush strokes to create subjective "impressions" of landscapes and contemporary life.  

La Carmencita by expatriot American artist John Singer Sargent, painted in 1890
"La Carmencita" by expatriate American artist John Singer Sargent, painted in 1890; although Sargent identified with Realism, elements of Impressionism shaped much of his work after 1880

Unsurprisingly, the Academy barred most of the Impressionists' work from being shown at the 1863 Salon, but after Napoleon III (who had seized power and appointed himself as Emperor in 1851) looked at the rejected paintings, he decreed that the public should judge. 

Even with Napoleon III's intervention, the first Paris exhibition of Impressionist art did not take place until 1874 when 30 artists banded together to put on their own show.  Most critics panned it - but the public loved it because they felt it resonated with modern life.

Women in the Garden by Post-Impressionist Pierre Bonnard, who based this 1890-91 series of paintings on Japanese block prints, especially in his use of flat planes of color and patterns
"Women in the Garden" by Post-Impressionist Pierre Bonnard, who based this 1890-91 series of paintings on Japanese block prints, especially in his use of flat planes of color and patterns

One reason why Impressionist art remains so popular today is its accessibility.  We don't need art history expertise to appreciate the joie de vivre in the interplay between light and colors. 

We can easily relate to the everyday scenes and places; in fact; stroll down almost any street in Paris, and you'll see outdoor cafes just like the ones the Impressionists painted.  Stand on the banks of the Seine River on a dark night and you can feel the same magic Van Gogh tried to capture as he painted the stars over the Rhône River.

Make the 45-minute trip to Monet's home in Giverny, and you'll see the pond day lilies he featured in so many of his most famous works of art.

The White Horse by Paul Gauguin, painted in 1898
"The White Horse" by Paul Gauguin, painted in 1898

By the time Impressionism reached its peak around the mid-1880s, artists were already pushing its boundaries as the Post-Impressionism movement emerged. 

Artists initially continued to focus - mostly - on real-life subjects, but they applied their paint thicker, choose more vibrant and less unnaturalistic colors, and played with shapes, often deliberately distorting or changing "reality" and sometimes using geometric and abstract forms. 

Post-Impressionist Paul Sérusier belonged to a group of young French artists called Les Nabis who felt art should involve symbolism and metaphors; you can see this trend, along with the use of almost-flat blocks of color, in his 1899 painting Women at the Source
Post-Impressionist Paul Sérusier, part of the Les Nabis group, uses almost-flat blocks of color, in his 1899 painting "Women at the Source"

As you will see as you walk through the galleries featuring Post-Impressionist art, this was not a unified movement or a specific style. 

Some Post-Impressionist artists focused on blocks of color, rendering their subjects on a flat plane.  Others fell under the spell of Japanese woodblock prints.  Still others turned to decorative arts. 

An influential group of young French artists who called themselves Les Nabis turned away from painting what they saw in real life to making their art about symbols, metaphors, and meanings.  

Paul Sérusier's 1910 painting, Tetrahedra, both marks the end of Les Nabis' most influential years and the beginning of abstract art
Paul Sérusier's 1910 painting, Tetrahedra, both marks the end of Les Nabis' most influential years and the beginning of abstract art

Look closely, and you can see the beginnings of Cubism, Fauvism, Expressionism, and Surrealism as the 1890s gave way to the 20th century and ushered in what we regard as the modern art period. 

Want to see more of the art that grew out of the Post-Impressionism movement?  Head over to Centre Pompidou (home to the Musée National d'Art Moderne) and the Museum of Modern Art of the City of Paris at the Palais de Tokyo and immerse yourself in their extraordinary collections of contemporary and modern art.

But first, there's a lot more to see and do at the Orsay.

Reserve Your Tickets Now:

2.  Explore Musée d'Orsay's Stunning Art Nouveau Furniture

This Art Nouveau dining room paneling and furnishings made in 1900 by French sculptor and cabinet-maker Alexandre Charpentier uses only plant and flower decorative elements
This Art Nouveau dining room paneling and furnishings made in 1900 by French sculptor and cabinet-maker Alexandre Charpentier uses only plant and flower decorative elements

Although best known for its art collections, the Orsay Museum's Decorative Arts collection of furniture and decorative items, especially for the Art Nouveau period with its flowing lines and organic shapes based on nature, is unsurpassed. 

Like Impressionism, Art Nouveau grew out of a rebellion against the academic approach to architecture and interior design and decoration, and flourished for a relatively short time between 1890 and 1910, reaching its peak at the 1900 Paris International Exposition. 

By the time World War I ended, so had Art Nouveau, replaced seemingly overnight by Art Deco and Modernism.

Corner display cabinet, church bench, mirrors. and wrought iron garden pot holder designed by Spanish architect Antoni Gaudí
Corner display cabinet, church bench, mirrors. and wrought iron garden pot holder designed by Spanish architect Antoni Gaudí

To develop its Art Nouveau Decorative Arts collection, the Orsay acquired pieces from museums all over the country prior to its opening in 1986, and has continued to enrich its holdings since that time with superb examples by the French and international giants of this movement.

You'll be dazzled by the huge variety of pieces from the masters of this movement:  Hector Guimard, Alexandre Charpentier, Louis Majorelle, Emile Gallé, Carlo Bugatti, Victor Horta, François-Rupert Carabin, Alphonse Mucha, Louis Tiffany, Charles Plumet, René Lalique, Eugene Gaillard, Émile Gallé, Jean Dampt, and too many more to name.

The centerpiece of this room is the wrought iron coat rack crafted by the leader of Art Nouveau in France, Hector Guimard, who also created the curvy Paris Metro signs and entrances you can still see at some stations
The centerpiece of this room is the wrought iron coat rack crafted by the leader of Art Nouveau in France, Hector Guimard, who also created the curvy Paris Metro signs and entrances you can still see at some stations

The Orsay Museum currently displays pieces from its now-vast Art Nouveau collection in galleries and large spaces on the Ground floor and Second level. 

Even if you only have enough time for a quick walk-through, do it, because the Musee d'Orsay's collection is the best in the world. 

3.  See the Statue of Liberty Up Close at the Orsay

Statue of Liberty at the Orsay
Statue of Liberty at the Orsay

Since 2011, the museum has had its own Lady Liberty - look for her soon after you pass through the entrance. 

This one, like the Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor given to the United States by the people of France in 1886, was created by Frédéric Bartholdi - but unlike the 151 foot (46 m) tall original, this one measures not quite 10 feet tall (slightly under 3 m) and was created more than a decade after the original.

Fun Fact:  You can see two other Statues of Liberty in Paris, plus a full-sized golden replica of her torch called the Flame of Liberty near the Pont de l'Alma bridge at Place Diana in the 16th arrondissement.

4.  Stroll Among More Statues

Antoine Bourdelle's massive Penelope sculpture at the Orsay Museum
Antoine Bourdelle's massive Penelope sculpture executed in bronze; you can find other copies in Paris at Musée Bourdelle and Petit Palais

Sculpture as an art form enjoyed immense popularity during the 1800s, not only in galleries and museums but also in private homes where the upper bourgeoisie displayed it to show their elevated status and taste. 

As Italian architect/interior designer Gae Aulenti's plans for transforming the space to include 80 galleries on three levels, numerous display platforms and pedestals, and plenty of natural light streaming through the glass roof took shape, it became clear that the new museum would be ideal for viewing sculptural art.

But where could the museum find the sculpture?

Edgar Degas exhibited "Petite Danseuse de 14 Ans" (Small Dancer, Aged Fourteen) in an 1881 Impressionist exhibition
Edgar Degas exhibited "Petite Danseuse de 14 Ans" (Small Dancer, Aged Fourteen) in an 1881 Impressionist exhibition; this patinated bronze version in the Orsay was made after Degas' death but the original was made in skin-colored wax topped with real hair and a fabric dress

By the time the plan to convert the old Gare d'Orsay railway station into an art museum took root in the 1970s, sculpture from the previous century had been out of favor for decades.

Accumulating paintings, photographs, and decorative arts for the new museum was relatively easy (curators simply raided other museums including the Louvre, Jeu de Paume, Musée du Luxembourg, and Musée d'Art Moderne), but pulling together a richly representative collection of sculpture created between 1848 and 1914 took some digging - almost literally, in one case.

Art Nouveau tables, lamps, and vases in Orsay Museum
"Monument to Cezanne" in marble created by sculptor Aristide Maillol; you can see a bronze version in Tuileries Garden near the Louvre along with other Maillol sculptures

Curators for the future Orsay scoured other museums throughout Paris and the French provinces, often discovering fantastic pieces in forgotten storage areas. 

Some sculptural works turned up in unexpected places:  the top of a tower in a small town in western France, an old fort in a Paris suburb, abandoned kitchens in a royal chateau once restored by Napoleon. 

Acquisitions from private collections yielded other treasures. 

Art Nouveau tables, lamps, and vases in Orsay Museum
The Six Continents statues on the plaza outside Musée d'Orsay; each of the six allegorical female figures represents a continent and was created by a different French sculptor, including Europe (Pierre-Alexandre Schoenewerk), Asia (Alexandre Falguière), Africa (Eugène Delaplanche), North America (Ernest-Eugène Hiolle), South America (Aimé Millet), and Australia (Mathurin Moreau)

Perhaps the most epic discovery involved rescuing the massive Six Continents statues designed for Trocadéro Palace for the Paris Universal Exhibition of 1878 from a city garbage dump in Nantes.  The curators scored all six in exchange for a painting by Sisley.

When you walk by on your way in or out of the Orsay, take a moment to admire them - they really are fantastic.

And of course, spend time admiring the museum's other sculptures, indoor and outside, as well as the statues perched on the building itself. 

5.  Pose in Front of the Orsay's Giant Clock

Musée d'Orsay actually boasts three enormous clocks:  the magnificent gold clock dripping with fancy ornamentation near the building's entrance, plus the two elegant glass and steel-framed clocks inset in the former railway station's towers overlooking the Seine.

Once you're inside the museum, you can easily spot the golden clock on the glass wall near the entrance.  Gare d'Orsay architect Victor Laloux designed the Belle Époque beauty and placed it in a highly visible spot so that no one would miss their train - you can position yourself in front of it (at a distance) for a photo, but getting the perspective right is a little tricky, especially when the museum is crowded.

The Orsay's golden clock designed by Victor Laloux
Posing in front of the Orsay's golden clock designed by Victor Laloux

One of the glass clocks is also relatively easy to find ... if you have lunch in the Cafe Campana brasserie on the museum's 5th level, where the clock forms one of the restaurant's walls. 

But unfortunately, tables next to the clock serve to discourage close-up poses.

Cafe Campana at the Orsay Museum
Cafe Campana at the Orsay Museum

The other glass clock is where you will get the best photos as well as spectacular views of the Seine and the Right Bank - but finding it is not so easy unless you know where to look. 

Here's how to find it.  Head to the end of museum away from the entrance, and go up to the 5th level.  Depending on whether you take the stairs, escalator, or elevator, you'll emerge in a slightly different place - but walk toward the Seine-side of the building where the galleries are located, and you'll spot the clock near the corner.

The views and photo opps are 100% worth the effort of finding this clock!

Fantastic city views from the clock at the top northeast corner of the Orsay Museum
Fantastic city views from the clock at the top northeast corner of the Orsay Museum - that's the ferris wheel at Tuileries Garden showing through the glass

6.  Check Out Musée Orsay's Special Exhibits

Special exhibit at the Orsay of "A Burial in Shanhai," a series by Yan Pei-Ming
Special exhibit at the Orsay of "A Burial in Shanghai," a series by Yan Pei-Ming

The Orsay Museum presents several special exhibits each year - sometimes a deep dive into an artist's body of work, such as the recent blockbuster Van Gogh exhibit, sometimes an exploration of a particular theme, and occasionally a close look at an interesting contemporary artist. 

Your ticket to the museum includes these special exhibits along with the regular collections, and they are almost always interesting - so be sure to look for them while you're there!

Find current and upcoming exhibitions at Musée d'Orsay

7.  Enjoy a Drink and Awesome Views on the Orsay's Almost-Secret Summer Terrace

Giant statue perched on the edge of the Summer Terrace overlooking the Seine River, Pont Royal, and the Louvre

Giant statue perched on the edge of the Summer Terrace overlooking the Seine River, Pont Royal, and the Louvre

One of the Orsay Museum's best-kept secrets is its Terrasse d'Été - Summer Terrace - perched high above the city with lovely views of the Seine River, the Louvre, and in the distance, even Sacre Coeur perched high on its hill in Montmartre.

To find it, use the escalator, elevator, or stairs near the museum's entrance and go up to the 5th floor.  Follow the signs to Cafe Compana.  Next to its entrance, you'll see a narrow passage to the right that leads to the terrace and a small snack bar where you can buy drinks and pastries.  Bask in the sunshine while you relax and enjoy the views!

How to Visit & Tour Musée d'Orsay

Here's our "cheat sheet" to all the best ways to experience the Orsay:

Guided Museum Tours

What's the best way to experience the Orsay Museum? 

To get the most from your experience, book a tour led by an expert guide.  Here are the best current tours:

Guided Bike Tour

  • Paris Highlights & Secrets - If you want to see the Orsay Museum (and other top Paris sights as well as some hidden gems from the outside only and hear interesting stories about them from your knowledgeable guide while biking through the city, this is the tour for you!  Book now

Skip the Line Tickets

  • Reserved-Access Ticket
  • Paris Museum Pass - You get free admission to the Orsay plus 60+ other Paris attractions such as the Louvre, Versailles, and Arc de Triomphe; choose a 2, 4, or 6 day pass
  • Paris Pass - Includes a Paris Museum Pass, plus a hop on/hop off Big Bus sightseeing tour, free travel on the Paris public transportation system, and discounts at restaurants and shops

Combo Tickets

Orsay History: From Belle Époque Train Station to Top Paris Museum

Musée d'Orsay occupies a former train station, Gare d'Orsay, built within a two-year time period for Paris's Universal Exhibition in 1900.  The station showcased the first world's first electrified city rail terminal, and served as the arrival and departure point for destinations southwest of Paris - you can still see the names of these cities and towns written across the front of the building.   

In addition to 16 tracks and other infrastructure related to train operations, the building also included a 370-guestroom luxury hotel at the southwestern corner of the building which continued operating until 1973.  

Although the hotel no longer exists, you can (and should) visit the hotel's grand Belle Époque restaurant, now called Le Restaurant, and see the glamorous crystal chandeliers and elaborate gilded and painting ceiling and walls.

Advances in technology soon resulted in longer electric trains, making the station obsolete for long-distance runs due to its too-short tracks.  By 1939, it could be used only for shorter suburban trains.

At that point, the station became the proverbial "cat with 9 lives" as it served as a mail depot during World War II, an exchange center for war prisoners, a film set, a city parking lot, a storage site, a temporary auction house, a vaudeville theatre, and a pop-up exhibition center.

In the end, preservationists prevailed.  Permission to tear down the station in order to build a large international hotel on the site was denied in 1971, and within a few years, plans were underway to transform the space into a museum focused on art from 1848, cut-off for the Louvre, through 1914, where Centre Pompidou begins.  

The new museum opened to rave reviews on December 1, 1986 and its collections and popularity have grown ever since.

Fun Musée d'Orsay Facts & FAQs 

Fun Facts

  • The Orsay Museum's huge vaulted ceiling contains more metal than the Eiffel Tower and almost 400,000 square feet of glass. 
  • Although the metal framework made the glass ceilings structurally possible, the electric trains - which emitted no steam or smoke - made the use of glass aesthetically possible.
  • The building's sides are also constructed of metal, but were faced with limestone to match the Louvre Museum across the river.
  • Gare d'Orsay and its hotel opened on Bastille Day, 1900.
  • American film director Orson Welles shot his adaptation of Franz Kafka's The Trial here.

Q:  How many people visit Musee d'Orsay each year?

A:  The museum averages over 3 million visitors each year.  For comparison, the Louvre Museum admits about 7.5 million visitors each year (due to the current cap of 30,000 visitors per day). 

Q:  How large is the museum?  

A:  Despite being much smaller than the Louvre, the museum's length of 574 feet (175 m) and width of 246 feet (75 m) make it almost twice as long and wide as an American football field.  The iron-framed glass roof soars 105 feet (32 m) above the elegant cream-and-black marble ground-level central hall, providing plenty of natural light. 

Q:  How many floors and galleries does the museum have?  

A:  There are now around 80 galleries on three levels, plus numerous platforms and pedestals provide additional display space - but a 10-year expansion effort has recently begun, so expect even more space and other changes by 2030.

Orsay Museum Visitor Information: Tickets, Hours, Location, & Map

Ticket Information

To avoid waiting in a (usually) very long ticket line at the entrance, buy your tickets online with a reserved time slot.  If you book a guided museum tour, your ticket will be included.

Admission is free to all visitors under 18 years old, EU citizens (or long-term residents) between 18 and 25 years old, and holders of a valid Paris Museum Pass.   At the current time, Museum Pass holders no longer need to reserve a time online but always check your pass for details in case this changes.  

See the "How to Visit" section above for more options


Days open:  Tuesday through Sunday
Days closed:  May 1, December 25, all Mondays
Hours open:  9:30 - 18:00 Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday - Sunday; 9:30 - 21:45 on Thursday
Last admission:  45 minutes before closing

Musée d'Orsay Address & Public Transportation

Location:  1, Rue de la Légion d'Honneur, 7th arrondissement 
Metro:  Line 12, Solférino station
RER C:  Gare du Musée d'Orsay station
  Lines 21, 27, 38, 85, 96
Batobus:  Batobus - Get Batobus hop on hop off river cruise tickets

Map Showing Musée d'Orsay Location

Things to Know Before Your Visit

  • The Orsay Museum is wheelchair accessible, and loaner wheelchairs are available. 
  • Free priority admission for disabled visitors and accompanying person is available upon presentation of proof of disability (usually at Entrance C, but check signs on the day of your visit).
  • Due to security considerations, suitcases, backpacks, and travel bags must be smaller than 56 x 45 x 25 cm (22 x 17.8 x 9.9 inches).   You may leave them in the cloakroom if space is available; otherwise, the cloakroom is restricted to objects not allowed in the museum areas.
  • Once you leave the museum, you can't re-enter with the same ticket.
  • Plan to spend about 2 hours at Musee d'Orsay if you want to see only the Impressionist and Post-Impressionist collections, and 3-4 hours if you want to see the Special Exhibits and some or all of the other art.  If you opt for lunch at either of the two main restaurants and do a traditional 3-course meal, count on another couple of hours for that.  If your goal is to see the museum's most famous pieces and learn a little about them without spending at least half a day here, do consider one of the efficient 2-hour guided tours.  In addition to providing lots of interesting information, the Orsay Museum guides help you move quickly through the crowds and secure a good viewing spot in front of the art.

Fun Things to Do in Paris Near the Orsay Museum

Where to Stay near the Orsay Museum

The upscale 7th arrondissement near Musée d'Orsay offers you a wonderful base for your Paris visit, close to numerous museums, historic churches where you can hear classical concerts, superb shopping, and wonderful places to eat.  Here are several excellent choices within a 10-minute walk:

  • Hotel de Varenne - Charming 4-star boutique hotel with a secluded garden close to Musée d'Orsay, the Rodin Museum, and the Eiffel Tower
    Book best deals
  • Hôtel de Lille (40 Rue de Lille) - Lovely 4-star boutique hotel surrounded by wonderful restaurants in a fantastic 7th arrondissement location near the Orsay, the Louvre, and the Seine River
    Book discount deals
  • Hôtel Montalembert - Excellent 5-star boutique hotel in Saint Germain de Prés near museums, the Bon Marché luxury shopping complex, and numerous small boutiques and antique shops
    Find best rates

Want more ideas?  Check out:

Find More Paris Hotels & Apartments near the Orsay

Use this Paris hotel map to find more accommodations near Musée d'Orsay.  Add your travel dates to see what's available and find best rates:

Check out the newest Paris hotels

Where to Eat near Musée d'Orsay Museum

Choose from three places to eat inside the museum: 

  • Le Restaurant - Beaux Arts jewel with gorgeous crystal chandeliers and Seine River views that opened in 1900 as the formal dining room of the luxury hotel located within Gare d'Orsay; menu choices feature traditional French food
  • La Campana - Brasserie-type food such as big salads, soups, burgers, quiche, steak-frites, and pasta; try the gourmandises option for dessert to sample a few different pastries
  • Le Café - Drinks and snacks on the 5th level Summer Terrace

Outside of the museum, you can find several very good small bistros along nearby Rue de Solferino and Rue de Bac.  Check out the menus by the doors and choose the one you like the best.

More to See & Do near the Orsay

Explore the Orsay's storied Saint Germain neighborhood - home to famous artists, writers, jazz clubs, and fabulous boutiques and restaurants - on these fun tours:

Chocolate & Patisserie Walking Tour through Saint Germain - See the neighborhood's famous art galleries, boutiques, and passages as you enjoy pastries, macaroons, and chocolates at 8 tasting stops on this 3-hour small-group or private stroll.  Book now

Charming Nooks & Crannies Bike Tour - On this small-group bike tour, you'll ride through Saint Germain des Prés, the Latin Quarter, the Marais and other fascinating neighborhoods as you take in famous sights as well as serendipitous discoveries on quiet back roads.  Book now