Paris Travel Planner   Musée des Arts et Métiers, Paris
This wonderful Paris museum highlights technology over the centuries, inventors, and scientific pioneers—and it's a lot of fun!








Paris's Musée des Arts et Métiers is hard to translate but easy to enjoy. Arts and trades, arts and industry, arts and technology—it all adds up to a fascinating collection of exhibits that allows visitors to appreciate centuries of invention and technological innovation.

From scientific measurement to transportation, from mechanics to materials, it's all wonderfully displayed in this former monastery and church. And along the way there's plenty of modern technology to aid your visit—touch screens that allow you to learn more specifics about an invention, computer games that teach children about topics ranging from recycling to machines.

The Museum is divided into seven topics, and within each topic there are exhibits that focus on different time periods: before 1750, 1750-1850, 1850-1950, and after 1950. This approach allows you to see the evolution over time and appreciate the roots of some of today's inventions.

Exhibits focus on Scientific Instruments, where you can see 17th century grain measures and 18th century looms and learn about the development of the meter, the kilo, and other standard measurement systems.

The Materials section presents exhibits on industrial processes, materials development, and custom materials.

Energy begins with some early engines, steam and gas, and then the evolution of electricity. Looking to the future, it moves to atoms, the sun, and more.

The Mechanics section goes from early machines to chips and robots, while Construction ranges from the art of building to the revolution of shapes.

In Communication you can see huge early printing presses, the rise of mass media, and global communications.

As you follow the sens de la visite, or order of the visit, you'll suddenly move from rather austere space into a huge, ornate hallway and majestic staircase, home to a large "motorized flying bat."

Musée des Arts et Métiers, Paris

This dates from 1897 and marks your entrance to the Transportation section. You'll see everything from old cars to early airplanes to Vélibs.

Before you leave, be sure to visit the former Church of St-Martin, which is an integral part of the Musée des Arts et Métiers. The sanctuary has been converted into a large display area described as "a place of wonder." From Foucault's pendulum to a variety of airplanes and cars, the hall celebrates invention and creativity. A large ramp/stairway allows visitors to climb up and appreciate all of the exhibits from above. It's a delightful end to a fascinating museum.

Paris Museum Pass accepted. Closed Monday. Free on Thursday evenings from 6:00 - 9:30 and the first Sunday of the month.

Métro: Arts et Métiers (hint: look for the exit Rue Réaumur Vers La Rue Saint-Martin. When you exit, head for the building that looks like a church, with a small statue of liberty in the courtyard, and enter the museum to the right of the church.)
Bus: 20, 38,39,47

Musée des Arts et Métiers
60 Rue Réaumur
75003 Paris
+33 (0)1 53 01 82 00

Museums of Paris

Alphabetical List of Museums

Top Museums of Paris

Historical Museums

Science Museums

Museums for Kids

What to See & Do in Paris

Planning Your Time in Paris

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Paris Transportation


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Musée des Arts et Métiers, Paris

Above, It looks like a church, but today it's part of the Musée des Arts et Métiers, Paris. The entrance is in the building to the right.

Below, Vaucanson's silk loom, from 1748.

Musée des Arts et Métiers, Paris

Sound equipment, Musée des Arts et Métiers, Paris

Above, Projectors and recording equipment for early "talking pictures."

Below, Rotary press from 1883, Musée des Arts et Métiers, Paris.

Rotary press, Musée des Arts et Métiers, Paris

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