Cité de l'Architecture

Address: Palais de Chaillot, 1 place du Trocadéro et du 11 novembre, Paris, 75116, France
Telephone: 01 58 51 52 00

- Mid-range


From Romanesque to Le Corbusier, a tour of French architecture without leaving Paris.

Housed in a wing of the 1930s Palais de Chaillot, the architecture city was created from the fusion of the historic museum of French monuments and the French architecture institute making a slightly strange but appealing leap from medieval sculpture to avant-garde architecture somewhere in the middle. On the ground floor astonishing full-size plaster casts of some of France's most famous Romanesque and Gothic monuments give a mini tour of France, with church tympanums from Vézélay, Conques and Souillac and Renaissance shop fronts. In the middle is a dimly lit gallery of vaulted frescoed interiors. On the second floor you find modern architecture, roughly from Palais Garnier up to the present, via landmarks like the 1960s Maison de la Radio, with lots of film footage and models, where the star of the show is the full-scale reconstruction, which you can go inside, of a duplex apartment at Le Corbusier's Villa Radieuse in Marseille.

Value for money

Price advice

 Museum 8 euros, free all under 18s, under 25s from EU; museum and exhibitions 10 euros, reductions 3-7 euros.

Expert tips

There are free exhibitions of recent architectural projects in the Galeries d'Actualités (entrance 7 avenue Albert de Mun).

The Cité d'Architecture participates in the Colline des Musées pass, along with Quai Branly, Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris and Palais de Tokyo, giving reduced price entry after the first museum at full tarif.

The café has great views of the Eiffel Tower across the Seine.

At weekends only (Sat, Sun 2-5pm, 3 euros) until October, visit the Elle Suite as decorated by Jean-Paul Gaultier - sailor stripes galore.

Recommended for

  • Backpackers / Students
  • Culture vultures
  • Families with younger children
  • Education
  • History
  • Design and architecture