I knew there was a Statue of Liberty in Paris, but what I didn’t know was there are indeed six! Replicas of Liberty Enlightening the World, the Statue of Liberty’s official name, in Paris are a reminder of the centuries-old Franco-American relationship.
The Statue of Liberty in the New York Harbor was a gift from the French people commemorating the alliance between the Americans and the French during the American Revolution. The Statue of Liberty, designed by Frederic Auguste Bartholdi while working with engineer Gustave Eiffel of Eiffel Tower fame, was built in Paris.
It’s no wonder that replicas dot the city! Here is where to find them.
Statue Of Liberty In Paris: Ile Aux Cygnes
At the westernmost tip of Ile aux Cygnes (Swan Island) is an impressive quarter-size replica of the Statue of Liberty. This version of the Statue of Liberty in Paris was given to the city in 1889 by the American community in Paris to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the French Revolution.
When the unveiling took place, the Statue of Liberty faced east toward the Elysees Palace and was inaugurated by then-President Marie-Francois Sadi Carnot on the 4th of July (American Independence Day). Since then, the Statue of Liberty has been turned to face west toward the U.S. and her larger twin in New York City, just as Bartholdi wanted.
The Statue of Liberty on the Ile aux Cygnes is 38 feet tall without the base. Two important dates are engraved on the base of the statue under the word Freedom: July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence (U.S.A.) and July 14, 1789, The Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen (France).
Getting To This Statue Of Liberty: By Metro, take Javel (line 10) or Bir-Hakeim (line 6). It’s a 15-minute walk from the Eiffel Tower. Entrance is free.
Statue Of Liberty In Paris: Luxembourg Gardens
Wandering through the Luxembourg Gardens has to be one of the most delightful ways to pass time in Paris. Little sailboats grace the large fountain, the green metal chairs are filled with Parisians soaking up the sun, and the Medici Fountain is one of the most beautiful in Paris.
Wander along the pathways past umpteen statues, and lo and behold, there is a bronze replica of the Statue of Liberty. This particular Statue of Liberty has only been gracing the Luxembourg Gardens since 2013 when it replaced a small-scale model of Lady Liberty that had stood in the garden for over one hundred years.
Getting To This Statue Of Liberty: By Metro, take Saint-Placide (line 4); access the park at Rue Guynemer. Entrance is free.
Statue Of Liberty In Paris: The Musee D’Orsay
I wonder how many people know when they go to the Musee d’Orsay to enjoy a Van Gogh or Renoir masterpiece that a Statue of Liberty will greet them. And do they know that this small-scale model of the Statue of Liberty used to stand in the Luxembourg Gardens?
This Statue of Liberty was created by Bartholdi for the Universal Exhibition of Paris in 1900. He gave it to the Luxembourg Museum where it was displayed in the gardens in 1905. In 2012, it was decided to move this Statue of Liberty to the Musee d’Orsay to protect it from further deteriorating. She makes a glorious impression standing at the entrance to the sculpture hallway under the glass roof.
Getting To This Statue Of Liberty: By Metro, take Solferino (line 12). Pay to enter the museum.
Statue Of Liberty In Paris: The Musee Des Arts Et Metiers
There are actually two Statues of Liberty In Paris at this museum. There is a bronze replica standing in the courtyard in the front of the museum. Inside the Musee des Arts et Metiers stands the plaster model used by Bartholdi to create the Statue of Liberty. It was donated by Bartholdi’s widow in 1907.
Getting To These Statues Of Liberty: By Metro, take Reaumur-Sebastopol (line 4) or Arts et Metier (line 3). Entrance to the Statue of Liberty in the courtyard is free while entrance to the museum to see the one inside is ticketed.
Statue Of Liberty In Paris: The Tiniest
At Place Michel Debre in the 6th arrondissement is a quirky, modern bronze statue of a Centaur. I have walked past this statue many times trying to understand it. In fact, French artist Cesaris created it using everyday items. Held up to the Centaur’s chest is a tiny replica of the Statue of Liberty. You need a powerful zoom to take a photo, but if you stand there and stare, the silhouette of Lady Liberty’s crown is visible against the sky.
Getting To This Statue Of Liberty: By Metro, take Saint-Germain-des-Pres (line 4) or Sevres Babylone (line 12). Entrance is free.
Where To Find Other Statues Of Liberty In France
Colmar is the birthplace of Frederic Auguste Bartholdi, and in 1907, a 39-foot replica of the Statue of Liberty was erected there in his honor.
In Lyon at the Musee des Beaux Arts, a miniature terracotta version of Lady Liberty stands.
Bordeaux received its own Statue of Liberty situated in Place Picard inaugurated by President Sadi Carnot in 1888. This statue was removed and melted down by the Nazis during WWII. In 2000, a new Statue of Liberty was erected in its place. After the 9/11 attacks, this Statue of Liberty was dedicated to the memory of the victims.