The Palais Garnier is a stunning opera house in the opera district in Paris. There’s plenty to enjoy on the outside, but if you have the time, the inside is even better. It really does feel like a palace with sweeping stairways, endless chandeliers and marble features. Sometimes access to the actual auditorium is excluded from the tours so ask before buying your ticket, because you won’t want to miss it. You can buy online tickets in advance here:
Palais Garnier Self-Guided Tour Tickets
Tours of the opera house allow you to see all the main parts of the building. Whilst the auditorium is a highlight, it was the other parts of the theatre that we will remember most. It truly looks like a palace with incredibly ornate features. The long gallery in particular (pictured below) is like something you would see at the Palace of Versailles. If you’ve ever seen the musical “Phantom of the Opera” you’ll probably feel that you know this historic building already. Andrew Lloyd Webber’s show and subsequent film were based on the opera house. We were simply stunned at how beautiful it was.
Also on the tour, you get to see the Library-Museum of the Opera (National Library of France) which is packed with ancient volumes all concerned with the history of Opera. There is also a permanent exhibition in the gallery here of paintings, drawings and photographs. The Opera de Paris Garnier is open daily from 10am to 5pm. Adult admission is 14 Euros with concessions available for students. Children under 10 are free (2019 prices).
The district around the Opera has some of the most exclusive shops in Paris and is well worth seeing. It will be ‘window shopping’ for most visitors though!
LOCATION & CONTACT
Address: Palais Garnier, Opéra National de Paris 1, place de l’Opéra, Paris
Tel: +33 (0) 1 58 05 49 42
Tour Tel: +33 (0) 1 71 25 24 23
The Paris Hop-on Hop Off Bus Tour stops here and the ticket includes access to the Palais Garnier.