|Sully Wing, Musée du Louvre, Paris|
The Louvre is made up of three wings: the Denon Wing, home to many of the best-known works of art such as the Mona Lisa and the Winged Victory of Samothrace; the Richelieu Wing, with its wonderful sculpture terraces and the apartments of Napoléon III; and the Sully Wing, perhaps best known for its antiquities and its focus on the history of the Louvre. You can choose where you want to start your visit of this large and rich museum.
The Sully Wing is the oldest part of the Musée du Louvre. As you enter the Sully wing you are greeted by the medieval Louvre, with a walkway that takes you past old city walls. You can get a sense of the palace that was also a fortress and learn a lot about the history of the Louvre.
Rounding a corner, you come face-to-face with a Sphinx.
This must be the Louvre!
History of the Louvre
One friend devoted her first Louvre visit to learning about the history of the Louvre, from medieval times to the 21st century. Certainly this palace was witness to many important historical events and a host of famous people.
Sully contains French paintings from the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. (If you're looking for later French paintings, such as the Impressionists, you'll want to go to the Musée d'Orsay.)
Drawings & Pastels
Also from the 17th through 19th centuries, this large collection shows a range of styles.
See gorgeous furniture and decorative items from the 17th and 18th centuries. (And there's lots more next door in the Musée des Arts Décoratifs. Although in a wing of the Louvre Palace, it has a separate entrance.)
Greek, Etruscan & Roman Antiquities
These collections are found both here and in the Denon wing of the Louvre. Venus de Milo, one of the most popular exhibits in the Louvre, is right at the intersection of the Denon Wing and the Sully Wing.
Remember that sphinx? You'll find a lot more Egyptian antiquities in the Sully Wing. Paintings, sculptures, mummies, and more to tell the stories of ancient Egypt.
Ancient Iran, Arabia & the Levant
All are represented in a variety of art forms, from painting to ceramics and more.
Keep Your Bearings
It's easy to find that you've left one wing and gone to the next. The Greeks, Etruscans, and Romans may be found in both the Sully and the Denon wings, while French paintings move seamlessly from the 14th to the 18th century between the Richelieu and Sully wings. Museum maps (available when you enter the Louvre) can help you orient yourself.
Here are some tips on different strategies for visiting the Louvre.