Tuileries Garden

Plunge into the green spaces and history of the oldest and biggest park in Paris.

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Le jardin des Tuileries, à 6 minutes à pied de l'Hotel d'Orsay

The Tuileries Garden, which sets the direction of the Champs-Elysées, is an ideal place for a walk in the heart of Paris. Museums and famous squares can be found at the four cardinal points of the gardens: the Louvre, the Orsay Museum, the Champs-Elysées, the Place Vendôme and the Palais Garnier. The Jeu de Paume Museum, which houses contemporary art exhibitions, as well as the Orangerie with Monet's Water Lillies, are located in the park.

History of the Tuileries Garden

The history of the Tuileries Garden is closely linked to the history of France. This royal park, which separates the Louvre Museum from the Place de la Concorde, is the biggest and oldest park in Paris. Its name comes from the land on which it was built, which was used to make tiles (tuiles). So it was that Catherine de' Medici had a "tuilerie palace" built here, which was burned down during the Commune in 1871, and which was adorned by a Florentine garden. Under Louis XIV, the park was redesigned in French style by André Le Nôtre, the landscape gardener who designed the gardens of Versailles. The Sun King finally preferred his court to reside in Versailles, so the Parisian garden was opened to the public. It became the first public park in Paris and in Europe. It was a popular site, playing host to the splendid festivities of Catherine de' Medici, the hunting parties of Louis XIII, some bloody episodes during the French Revolution and the banquet of the 22 000 mayors of France.

A garden built around four areas

The garden is built around four large spaces. The Grand Carré is the former private royal garden. It leads to the Louvre Museum. The ponds, flowerbeds and the large lawns decorated with 19th century sculptures, have been rearranged in accordance with Le Nôtre's plans. The Grand Couvert, the wooded part of the garden, can be considered the "green lung" of Paris: there are over 2000 trees in the park. The Concorde entrance and the Fer de cheval (horseshoe), to the west of the garden, form a majestic entrance with a direct view on the Louvre Palace and the glass pyramid designed by Pei.

A real open-air museum

The jardin des Tuileries is also a real open-air museum. It houses some superb monuments and sculptures. Among the works on display are statues by Rodin such as The Kiss, by Coysevox or Carpeux, but also more contemporary works by such artists as Ernst, Giacometti or Dubuffet with Le Bel Costumé.

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