History and world cultures

Artists’ houses, history museums, collections of non-Western art … in Parisian museums

History museums

Musée de l’Homme, Galerie de l'Homme, vitrine le corps humain entre nature et culture, Museum national d'Histoire naturelle, Paris © Jean-Christophe Domenech - MNHN

Paris offers you an incredible journey throughtime at its many history museums! Step through the doors of the Musée d'Archéologie national, the Musée de Cluny (reopening scheduled for fall 2021), the Musée Carnavalet (currently undergoing renovation work) and the Archaeological Crypt on the square in front of Notre Dame Cathedral to learn more about Prehistory, Antiquity and the Middle Ages in France, as well as the origins of the French capital. the Musée de l’Homme focuses on the evolution of man and societies.

Lontemporary history enthusiasts can immerse themselves in numerous documents at the Mémorial du général Leclerc de Hauteclocque et de la Libération de Paris – Musée Jean-Moulin, the Mémorial de la Shoah de Paris and the Mémorial de Drancy in order to find out more about the Second World War, the French Resistance, and the history of the Jews in France during the Holocaust.

The Musée de la Légion d’honneur et des ordres de la Chevalerie with its fine collection of medals and decorations, the Centre historique des Archives Nationales with its important documents about the history of France, and the Musée de l’Armée  with its military collections reveal treasures of French heritage. The Musée national de l’Histoire de l’immigration, for its part, retraces the history of immigration in France, from the 19th century to the present day. Finally, the Musée national de la Marine (closed till end of 2021) perched on Chaillot hill, devotes its museum spaces to the maritime history of France.

World art and culture

Musée du Quai Branly, Paris © OTCP - Nicolas Borel

If you would like to discover art and civilizations from around the world then look no further, you’ll find them all here in Paris!
Many of the capital's museums highlight world cultures.

The museuls Guimet, Cernuschi and Ennery unveil the richness of their collections of Asian art to the public. The Institut du Monde arabe presents the cultural diversity of the Arab countries. The Musée d’art et d’histoire du judaïsme reveals the heritage and traditions of the Jewish communities. Finally, the Musée du quai Branly – Jacques Chirac which has just celebrated its 10 years of existence, invites visitors to discover the art of Africa, Asia, Oceania and the Americas.

A change of scene guaranteed!

In the footsteps of great men

Maison de Victor Hugo

Kept in their original state or converted into museums, the houses of artists reveal the intimacy of writers and poets to the visitor. Paris and its surroundings account for several former residences of great figures of French literature - Victor Hugo, Honoré de Balzac, Alexandre Dumas, Claude Monet, Auguste Comte, Elsa Triolet et Aragon, Stéphane Mallarmé – as well as former residences of important figures in the world of French science and politics - Clemenceau.

See also…

Music lovers can enjoy strolling around the Musée de la musique,  at the new Philharmonie de Paris, and learn lots of fascinating information about Western music from the 16th century. And for movie fans, the landmark Cinémathèque française reveals the many aspects of cinema.

Crypte archéologique de l'Ile de la Cité

Museum
7 parvis de Notre-Dame - Place Jean-Paul II, Paris, 75004
Book

Beneath the Notre-Dame de Paris cathedral square is the most important archaeological crypt in Europe, offering a unique look at......

Institut du monde arabe

Museum
1 rue des Fossés Saint-Bernard, Paris, 75005
Book

A cultural bridge between France and the Arab world The Arab World Institute was founded in 1987 by France and the states of the......

Maison de Balzac

Museum
47 rue Raynouard, Paris, 75016

In the heart of the former village of Passy, the Maison de Balzac is the only one of the novelist's Parisian homes that remains......

Maison de Victor Hugo

Museum
Hôtel de Rohan-Guéménée - 6 place des Vosges, Paris, 75004

Situated in the prestigious Place de Vosges in the heart of the Marais district, the Maison de Victor Hugo invites visitors into......

Musée d'art et d'histoire du Judaïsme

Museum
Hôtel de Saint-Aignan - 71 rue du Temple, Paris, 75003
Book

France is home to the third largest Jewish community in the world, after Israel and the United States. The presence of the Jewish......

Musée de l'Armée - Invalides

Museum
129 rue de Grenelle, Paris, 75007

The Musée de l'Armée, created in 1905, is located in the prestigious setting of the Hôtel National des Invalides. It was created......

Fondation Claude Monet - Giverny

Museum
84 rue Claude Monet, Giverny, 27620
Book

Claude Monet's property at Giverny became the Claude Monet Foundation in 1980. House with its pink crushed brick façade where the......

Musée départemental Albert-Kahn

Museum
1 rue des Abondances, Boulogne-Billancourt, 92100

Banker, humanist, patron, Albert Kahn (1860-1940) dreamed of dialogue between people and harmony between civilizations. His dream......

Musée des Archives Nationales - Hôtel de Soubise

Museum
Hôtels de Soubise et de Rohan - 60 rue des Francs Bourgeois, Paris, 75003

Hôtel de Soubise is one of the finest private mansions in the Marais district, with reception rooms decorated by Germain Boffrand......

La Cinémathèque française

Museum
51 rue de Bercy, Paris, 75012
Book

Housed in a resolutely modern building designed by architect Frank Gehry, the Cinémathèque Française is entirely devoted to......

Maison Auguste Comte

Museum
10 rue Monsieur le Prince, Paris, 75006

The philosopher's last home as it was at the time of his death in 1857. Auguste Comte, promoter of 'positive philosophy' and......

Maison Triolet - Aragon

Museum
Moulin de Villeneuve, Saint-Arnoult-en-Yvelines, 78730

C’est au cœur d’un parc de six hectares que reposent Elsa Triolet et Aragon. Aragon a légué sa maison à la France avec la volonté......

Mémorial de la Shoah, Paris

Museum
17 rue Geoffroy-l'Asnier, Paris, 75004

The discovery of the death camps, knowledge about the history of the Holocaust, helps to fight against all forms of racism and......

Musée Clemenceau

Museum
8 rue Benjamin Franklin, Paris, 75116

The three-room apartment where Georges Clemenceau lived for 35 years until his death on 24 November 1929. A museum in 1931, it......

Musée d’Ennery

Museum
59 avenue Foch, Paris, 75116

Remarkable collection of 7,000 objects from the Far East bequeathed to the State in 1894 by Clémence d'Ennery, wife of the......

Musée de Cluny - Le monde médiéval

Museum
28 rue du Sommerard, Paris, 75005

The visit begins on the Boulevard Saint-Michel, where even before entering the museum, you can admire the vestiges of Gallo-Roman......

Mémorial de la Shoah, Drancy

Museum
110-112 avenue Jean Jaurès, Drancy, 93700

Complementary to the Mémorial de la Shoah in Paris, the Mémorial de la Shoah in Drancy is a place of mediation between the site......

Musée départemental Stéphane Mallarmé

Museum
4 promenade Stéphane Mallarmé, Vulaines-sur-Seine, 77870

A place of memories, the Musée Départemental Stéphane Mallarmé is located in the old holiday house of the poet, located opposite......