Before we could begin contacting the museums for our “111 Museums in Paris that you should not miss” guidebook, James and I had to define our roles. Planning this division of labor filled me with a mix of excitement and anxiety, as I was eager to cover the art museums that sparked my passion. We needed to decide who would cover which museums. Art is my true passion, and the thought of not writing about art museums worried me. I wanted to share my love for these unique places.

Les raboteurs de parquet de Gustave Caillebotte
Les raboteurs de parquet  – Gustave Caillebotte – Orsay Museum

Walking to meet James at a café, my heart raced about which museums he might want to cover. Sitting at the table, trying to relax, felt like waiting for an exam. Wondering how to discuss the matter without coming across as too pushy, I let James start the conversation. Fortunately, he was keenly interested in some of the city’s unique and lesser-known museums. Relief washed over me, and a big smile spread across my face—I was so happy!

This made it much easier for us to split our tasks fairly, though the selection process required some fine-tuning. I decided to focus on museums related to art, architecture, history, and mineralogy, while James was excited to explore places like the Musée Carnavalet, Musée Marmottan, and Musée Belmondo. After finalizing our plans, James took on the significant task of photographing our journey, capturing over 3000 stunning images. You can see all of them on our Instagram at @111MuseumsParis.

Bourdelle Museum

Moreover, deciding to publish the book in both English and French meant leveraging my bilingual skills to translate and capture the essence of Paris’s museum culture in two languages. a task that greatly refined my translation abilities. Working on this guide showed us how complex and varied the whole process would be.

Working on this guide showed us how complex and varied the whole process would be.

As the division of labor was finalized, I revisited my list of museums and discovered several I had never heard of, such as the Musée Atelier Chana Orloff and Hôtel Heidelbach. There were lots of discoveries ahead of me.

I discovered several museums I had never heard of such as Musée-Atelier Chana Orloff

What about famous museums? Would it be as fascinating? Interestingly, I realized that many of us, including myself, often overlook permanent collections in favor of temporary exhibitions, mistakenly thinking we know what to expect and that it might be mundane. This is a misconception! There are also numerous museums whose names might not initially attract visitors, but just like a book, we should not judge a museum by its name. It’s worthwhile to step out of our comfort zones and explore these hidden treasures.

Le Louvre – Cour Marly

Working on this guidebook was a journey filled with discoveries, learning new skills, and, to my surprise, a path to personal growth.

In my next chapter I will tell you about my first museums encounters and what I learned was quite unexpected.

“111 Museums in Paris That You Shouldn’t Miss”  guidebook is available in the US, UK and France in Museums, your local bookstore, or buy online from

“111 Museums in Paris That You Should Not Miss” is not just a title; it’s the beginning of an adventure. Stay tuned!

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