Park connecting the Louvre with Place de la Concorde and the Champs Elysees. It was created in 1564 by Catherine De Medici and was a private royal garden until 667 when it was opened to the public.
I realize that I have only really been to Paris once for any length of time, and that was in 1950 when I was 12. My only subsequent visit(s) were the equivalent of a day trip in 1964. I would come in on the train, spend the day in Paris and leave in the evening on the train.
On that trip I took a photo of the Jardin des Tuileries from the bus.
But Paris has many other gardens and parks. My dad took several photos of the botanical gardens (Jardin des Plantes) in 1950 (probably because this was where the old laboratory was located where Henri Becquerel discovered radioactivity in 1896.
The green spaces in Paris include (more or less in alphabetical order):
Bois de Boulogne - includes a children's amusement park
Bois de Vincennes - Paris's biggest park
Jardin des Plantes - botanical garden and small zoo
Jardin du Luxembourg - (fee for the playground)
Le Jardin des Serres d'Auteuil - tropical pavilion
Parc André Citroën - fountains and waterfalls
Parc de Belleville - views of the city
Parc des Buttes-Chaumont
Parc de la Villette - open air films
No need to be a garden architect to find out that this is a typical garden "à la Française" designed by the famous André Le Nôtre who also designed (or redesigned) the gardens of Vaux-le-Vicomte, Versailles, Chantilly, Fontainebleau and many more.
When entering a French formal style garden I have each time the feeling that vegetation is less present than stones. That's certainly the case at the Tuileries where the gravel lanes and terraces occupy a large part of the 25 hectares; add the two basins, the many, many statues and the buildings of the Orangerie and the Jeu de Paume so that not much is left for grass.
This said, I like this geometrical style which I find restful and calm especially when coming out from a crowded metro (closest station is Tuileries on line 1).
The Jardin des Tuileries is a park where you can grab a chair for free and sit where you like. That was not the case in 1960 - 1970. One had to pay for a chair. For young people it was not uncommon to dodge paying the fee and run away when the supervisor was approaching to make people pay.
By dry weather I would like a bit more green and less of that quite dusty white gravel (same dusty gravel as in Versailles). A shoe-shine boy could make money at the Jardin des Tuileries!
In winter the Tuileries are a wide and sad area that we have to cross to go anywhere, blaming who did it so big and unprotected.
In summer this garden is a refreshing area, plenty of colour and life.
Reading about the history of France I often came onto the "Palais des Tuileries" a royal residence for many French sovereigns: Henri IV, Louis XIV, Louis XVI, Louis XVIII, Napoleon I and Napoleon III. At first I was not able to situate exactly that palace destroyed by fire in 1871 and whose ruins were finally removed in 1882.
I found an engraving showing the Palais des Tuileries and the first part of the gardens under Napoleon III around 1860 (photo 2).
A painting from the Palace is on display at the Musée Carnavalet (photo 3). Photos of the ruins also exist (photo 4) so that it is possible to imagine what the Palais des Tuileries looked like.
Actually this palace of 260 m long was perpendicular to the Seine starting at the Pavillon de Flore (now at the end of Le Louvre Denon's wing) and extending to the North along what is now the Place du Carousel and the avenue General Lemonnier. The palace ended rue de Rivoli at the Pavillon Marsan which is now part of Le Louvre (photo 1).
If still existing the Palais des Tuileries would cut off the grandiose view one has now from the Pyramide towards La Concorde and the Arc de Triomphe.
My photo (n°2) shows that part of the Jardins des Tuileries, with the stairs going to the Carousel, where was standing this famous palace.
The name "tuileries" comes from the tile factories that were active on this place before Queen Catherine de Medicis had the construction started in 1654.
I won't bore you with yet another historical account of the Tuilleries. OK so it used to be home to a palace which was destroyed during the French revolution (I think) but I just want to talk about the way it is now and what it has to offer.
We get a lot of questions here on the Paris forum from people wanting to know what to do to entertain kids in Paris, well I am here to tell you that my two little grandchildren (ages 2 & 3) thoroughly enjoyed several visits to the Tuilleries during our week long stay in Paris in September/October 2013.
I think we all know that kids like nothing better than to run to their heart's content and this is probably the most beautiful place to do that in all of France (and probably beyond). The wonderful carousel probably accounted for a major part of their enjoyment as well.
The gardens are stunning and the location is very easy find. We were able to walk from our apartment in St Germain Des Pres over the Pont des Artes, throught the Louvre and into the Tuilleries. Sometimes we were on our way to somewhere else such as the Place de la Concorde or the Champs Elysees, Trocadero etc. Sometimes we just took the children for a run to tire them out in the afternoon. Whatever, no visit to the Tuilleries is ever wasted whether you are young or old. What a place just to sit and watch the world go by.
Take your time, see, hear, smell, and walk the calm paths of this large park located in the heart of Paris. The name "Tuilerie" means "tile" in english, and it is referred to the Palais des Tuileries (now disappeared, indeed destroyed by a fire in the XIX century) where several french monarchs have had their royal residence. The gardens belonged to the palace, now it is a public park where you can take a rest, breath pure air, the boys play soccer, or just a friendly chat among plants, and even eat in the restaurants here located.
This place has a singular history, like everything in this city, created by Catalina de Medicis (wife of Henry II) the Palais des Tuileries was constructed in the place where there was several tiles factories (that's the reason of the name) demolished to make room for the palace building.
Get there, it is closed by night, and during the day it is a green landscape where you can enjoy the view, the gardens and the meals.
We were fortunate enough to be staying just 3 blocks from this Grandaddy of Paris' Parks so we walked it a lot during our week in the city. Like other of the more elegant greens spaces, these were originally the private gardens of a palace, Palais de Tuileries, for which it is named. Designed in the mid-1600's, it still looks very much like it did over 300 years ago but with addition of some modern amenities like cafes, chairs for sunning and whatnot. The palace is long gone - burned during the Paris Commune - but the stately Louvre anchors one end of its 63 acres of lush green lawns, fountains, monuments and flowerbeds, with busy Place de la Concorde on the other. The broad central avenue makes up part of the L'Axe Historique (see previous tip) that runs through Concorde, the Champs Elysees and Arc de Triomphe all the way to Défense.
As inviting as those beautiful lawns are, they are not for picnicking - "keep off the grass" signs are everywhere - but there are plenty of benches and chairs for noshing a bag lunch. Several cafes also make for some of the most pleasant places in Paris to have a glass of wine, light lunch or dinner and just watch the people go by. Have kids along? The cafes are casual enough to ease any worries about spilled milk or room to park the stroller, and the park has a Fun Fair in July and August.
Is on the World Heritage List of UNESCO
The main part of the Tuileries Gardens has many fountains, ponds, numerous sculptures and two museums, the Galerie Nationale du Jeu de Paume and the Musee de l'Orangerie, which displays Claude Monet's large water lily paintings . Those two buildings are the only remains of the original Palais de Tuileries.
The sculptures are many and varied, most of them from the era of Louis XIV to the present day. Quite a few are statues of Rodin (The Kiss, Eve, Meditation, The Great Shadow), and other well known sculptures. It's like a huge museum of outdoor sculptures!
For the children, little boats can be rented for them to play with in the ponds, and I saw a Pony waiting to be ridden.
There is a lot of free seating and toilets are in the park. I loved the avenue of Trees, all of them trimmed into large squares, the same height and width!
Garden tours are held between the months of March to December, they are free, but are only conducted in French. If you are interested, come on a Sunday during these months. The tour begins at 3.30pm and lasts about 1.25hours
In July-August you will find a funfair.
Jardin des Tuileries opening and closing times......
April-May: 7 - 9pm
June-August: 7 - 11pm
September-March: 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
I am continuing my walk from the Louvre, through the Arch and are now in the Jardin des Tuileries, one of Paris's most visited gardens. Hard to imagine back to early 16th century when this area was a clay quarry for tiles. Later, the Palais de Tuileries was built, and a large garden in Italian style was added. This garden was later redesigned in French formal style by a gardener who designed the gardens at the Versailles Palace.
Unfortunately, the Palace was razed in 1871. The formal design of the Tuileries garden has survived. I really liked this garden. Plenty of greenery, lots of hedges with statues popping parts of their bodies above them, and views to beautiful old buildings.
This was the first part of the garden. Seating is scattered around to rest those weary legs from all the sightseeing!
The Jardin des Tuileries is the beautiful landscaped formal garden area which runs from the Louvre to the start of the Champs-Elysées at the Place de la Concorde The gardens were laid out in the 17th Century for King Louis XIV as the gardens of the old Palais des Tuileries which was burnt on 23rd May 1871 during the suppression of the Paris Commune and later demolished in 1883.
The gardens have been enhanced by the addition of some striking sculptures dotted throughout. The walk through the middle of the Jardin des Tuileries from the Place de la Concorde to the Louvre is in my opinion the best way to approach the museum (providing the weather is good, of course) and there are numerous outdoor cafés and restaurants to stop at to refresh yourself on the way although all are a little overpriced as a result of their excellent location.
The surface of the paths around the gardens (including the main path through the centre) is not a hard surface but a loose gritted path and so if it is very dry any wind will whip up a cloud of dust and have people trying to shield their eyes. This is possibly the only downside to these lovely gardens.
This is a rare view of the Tuileries Garden. The picture isn't a joke.
It isn't SNOW, it's DIRT!
The Jardin des Tuileries was under reconstruction when I was there last and all the plants were gone. The few trees left had no leaves. I was so happy to be in Paris again that I didn't notice all this until my film was devloped at home!
We walked around, took pictures and found a popular restaurant that had walls of glass. We ate a nice lunch, while viewing the activity outside in the "garden."
After lunch we went over to the rue de Rivoli looking for a bookshop that would have an American book written in French, as a gift for a Belgian friend. It seemed that while much of my time in Paris was spent in search of one thing, it was filled with many surprises, more than I would ever have expected.