Paris’ landmark museums, the Louvre, the Orsay and the Grand Palais, have closed to protect their world famous works of art.
The Louvre – which is the most visited museum in the world, seeing 9.7 million tourists per year – closed its doors on Friday, citing the rising waters of the River Seine as a threat to its priceless collection. It will stay shut until at least Tuesday.
Tourists who had planned to visit the attraction were left disappointed, with one man from Turkey saying: “Tomorrow we are going to leave so we cannot visit. We will save it for the next time, if we have the opportunity to come again.”
Another would-be visitor said that although it is a “shame” that the museum is closed, it is the “right” decision to move the art.
The Orsay Museum – home to Vincent Van Gogh’s ‘Starry Night’ – announced on Friday that it would remain closed until Tuesday, although there is uncertainty as to when floodwaters will recede.
Paris’ river boat service, another popular tourist attraction was also not operating, due to exceptionally high waters impeding passage beneath the Seine’s numerous bridges.
The river reached six metres above the normal level on Friday, its highest in roughly 35 years.