Sailing through the Museum


All hands on deck! On April 1st, 2017 the Musée National de la Marine in Paris will close for renovations! This is no “poisson d’avril”  (the french expression for April fools). The museum will remain closed until 2021. However, from March 25-March 20170325_15104131 the entire collection is on board and admission is free! During a week of family friendly events, visitors of all ages may immerse themselves in French maritime culture. Dive into nautical themed workshops, guided tours, movies or leisurely drift  while listening to whale chants and do yoga!  Also, all books, clothing and decorative items in the boutique are discounted 50 percent. Open everyday except Tuesday from 10am to 6pm. Click on the deep sea diver to the right for the entire program in English.

-1The permanent collection originated with Louis XV. His naval architect gave the king all of the models having served for construction. First displayed in 1748 at the Louvre, they remained there until installed in the Palais Chaillot. These impressive artifacts are still at the center of the museum’s display but the collection has evolved. It retraces France’s naval history beyond war to include commerce, industry and leisure. Among the treasures are masterpieces by the great maritime painter Claude Vernet.

-8.jpgAs much as my son loves the sea, he is obsessed with aircraft. To his delight, the huge model aircraft carrier was surrounded by model helicopters, jets and documentary videos. The memory of my childhood favorite (the submarine at Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry) was sparked by an immersive display that included sound effects. Nowadays, I am more intrigued by the sculptural mastheads depicting mythical figures. My husband was fascinated with the astrolabe as well as other tools in the cabinet of curiosities. I do hope those gorgeous pieces of furniture will remain. The future renovation promises innovative museography and,  hopefully, greater concern for accessibility.


Screen Shot 2017-03-26 at 18.05.49If you miss the boat this week and can’t wait until 2021 you will have to travel another port in Brest, Toulon, Rochefort, or Port Louis. Information is available in English on the website by clicking on the icon to the left. Telephone 01 53 65 69 69 or email


-4To get there by land

The National Museum of the Marine is located in the Palais de Chaillot, 17 Trocadero square, 75 116 Paris. The entrance is on the right next to the Musée de l’Homme.

Bus: Lines 22, 30, 32, 63, Trocadero stop
Metro:  Trocadero (lines 6 and 9)  Franklin D.Roosevelt (lines 1 and 9)
Which option is best suited to your needs? Checkout GlobetrotTED under infomobi!

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