Jardin du Palais Royal

sights / Parks & gardens

Jardin du Palais Royal information

Paris , France
Address
Street 2 place Colette, 1er
Getting there
metro Palais Royal–Musée du Louvre
Opening hours
7am-10.15pm Apr & May, to 11pm Jun-Aug, shorter hr rest of year
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Lonely Planet review

The Jardin du Palais Royal is a perfect spot to sit, contemplate, and picnic between boxed hedges or shop in the trio of arcades that frame the garden so beautifully: the Galerie de Valois (east), Galerie de Montpensier (west) and Galerie Beaujolais. However, it's the southern end of the complex, polka-dotted with sculptor Daniel Buren's 260 black-and-white striped columns, that has become the garden's signature feature.

This elegant urban space is fronted by the neoclassical Palais Royal (closed to the public), constructed in 1633 by Cardinal Richelieu but mostly dating to the late 18th century. Louis XIV hung out here in the 1640s; today it is home to the Conseil d'État (State Council).

The Galerie de Valois is the most upmarket arcade with designer boutiques like Stella McCartney, Pierre Hardy, Didier Ludot and coat-of-arms engraver Guillaumot, at work at Nos 151 to 154 since 1785. Across the garden, in the Galerie de Montpensier , the Revolution broke out on a warm mid-July day just three years after the galleries opened in the Café du Foy. The third arcade, tiny Galerie Beaujolais , is crossed by Passage du Perron , a passageway above which the writer Colette (1873–1954) lived out the last dozen years of her life.