Maison de Balzac
Maison de Balzac
3.5
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
About
Nestled on the hillsides of Passy, the House of Balzac is the only one of the Parisian residences of the novelist which survives today. It was in the studyroom that Balzac corrected, from 1840 to 1847, « La Comédie humaine ». Through the presentation of portraits of the artist or his characters, paintings, engravings, drawings, and using an original scenography, the museum encourages the visitor to wonder about Balzac and suggests original paths for lead to the discovery as well as to the rereading of La « Comédie humaine ».
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Tours & experiences
Explore different ways to experience this place.

Top ways to experience Maison de Balzac and nearby attractions

The area

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

3.5
3.5 of 5 bubbles140 reviews
Excellent
38
Very good
49
Average
36
Poor
7
Terrible
11

JRM
Penetanguishene, Canada99 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2023 • Family
The "Maison Balzac" should be of interest to any student or fan of 19th century French literature. The enigmatic writer penned much of his Comedie Humaine at this location in the now fashionable Passy quartier of western Paris. The narrow hallways and compact rooms make for a tight squeeze; but the dwelling is both manageable and charming. The tour is also pleasantly underwhelming: the exhibits and displays are easily digestible, allowing the visitor to enjoy a complete visit in less than 45 minutes. The highlight for most is Balzac's writing table and chair, basic and functional, but evocative nonetheless. Very easy to combine a visit here with one to the nearby Musee Marmatton Monet. To top it all off, the Maison Balzac is free!! Not a can't miss to be sure but an interesting, informative and rewarding diversion off the beaten track.
Written August 30, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ayyar
USA135 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2013 • Solo
If you have time to spend in Passy, the 'village' within Paris not far from the Trocadero and the Eiffel Tower - by all means stop in at this small museum. The modest building, down a flight of concrete stairs from street level, contains the only surviving Paris residence of the hugely prolific nineteenth-century novelist Honore de Balzac and, like most City of Paris museums, entry is free.

The museum is sparsely equipped, with few artifacts from Balzac himself. Still, one room is filled with portraits and sculptures of Balzac by his contemporaries, which bring the writer to life, persuasively creating a vivid profile of an obviously distinct personality. Another room is dedicated to a "family" tree diagramming the ties binding the hundreds of characters who populate his signature work, 'La Comedie Humaine.' Downstairs, a series of drawings humorously illustrate Parisian life during his time. The small garden around the museum is a fine place to relax, with chairs and benches nestled amid the greenery and late-blooming roses still scenting the air late in September.

The best access to the museum from the center of Passy is down an atmospheric pedestrian shopping street, rue de l'Annonciation. Passy has great mass transport access, via metro (line 9, stop La Muette), RER (line C, stop Bougainvilliers), and the 22, 32, or 52 bus lines.
Written September 28, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jean-Marc M
Geneva, Switzerland24 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2014 • Couples
The house of Honoré de Balzac is located at about one kilometer from the Trocadero and the Eiffel Tower (47 Rue Raynouard, 75016), but not many people take the time to visit the place where the giant of the French literature has isolated himself to revise and correct the manuscript of the “Human Comedy” between 1840 and 1847, trying to escape the many creditors who were after him. At the time of our visit, a good part of the house was closed for maintenance work and preparation of a new exhibition, but the five rooms open for visitors are most interesting. The best one is the room where he placed his desk. You can easily imagine him working endlessly, correcting pages after pages with the help of large doses of coffee. Some portraits of his friends, including his friend to be mistress to be wife, Eva Hanska from Poland, are placed in an anteroom. In another room, you can see some examples of his revision work, with the many corrections and changes added beside and within the original text. A convenient system of pulling plates facilitates the reading of the original pages exposed. And in the last room are displayed all the characters of the “Human Comedy”, including an impressive genealogical tree showing the various relationships between those characters. – For those who have an interest in the history of the French literature, it is really worthwhile to spend some time in this very quiet house, where the living conditions of the great master are suddenly made visible to the discerning visitor. Free entrance.
Written December 2, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ervino R
Turin, Italy2 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Family
We came at the Maison at 5:15 pm on February 1st. The doors were already closed while 3 people were inside, talking. We knocked the glass door and show them that the timetable was clearly stating "Closes at 6,last entrance at 5:30". It was clear they did not want last minute tourists to disturb their late afternoon.
They continued to say that it was closed, that we did not understand what the timetable was showing anf when we started taking pictures to get a proof they suddendly came out and started shouting
Definitely not polite, to say the least.
Beware! Go well before!
Written February 2, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

shereallyateitall
New York City, NY45 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2019
This is a museum for lovers of 18th cent. literature, of quirky places and out-of-the-way museums. It's really only a couple of tiny rooms where Balzac spent about 10 years writing some of his best work and on a sunny day the garden is charming, with a distinctly homegrown feel to it. I lucked out with a side exhibition of Grandville, one of his closest collaborators (illustrating his work) and was completely taken on my first visit, having stumbled onto it during a long walk back from the Marmottan (also a very nice museum to visit). This is not the jaw-dropping experience provided by the Louvre, Orsay or Jacquemart. It is instead their opposite: their antidote, far from any selfie crowd or noise, with a quiet but engaging view of Paris from the Passy neighborhood in the 16th Arrondisement. Some may resent the 7-8 euros to get in but I found myself returning several times, dragging friends and family, for this quietly enjoyable visit to the past.
Written November 27, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Lizzi B
Somerset, UK39 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2016 • Friends
There was nothing of the man or his work that engaged me in a visit to this house. I had understood it to be free but there was a charge of 5 euros to go in. What we found was mostly artistic reaction to Honore de Balzac but nothing of his except a small desk on which he allegedly wrote some of his great work La Comedie Humaine.
Altogether a massive disapointment. Even worse was that the garden was a place where local school children came to eat their lunches - horrid pong of Macdonalds - some one should take the whole place in hand soon. The staff were v unhelpful and the room attendants were asleep and unsure as to where Balzac was even born.
Written September 25, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Antoine F
Paris, France5 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Solo
This is a compulsory visit for all Balzac lovers. To imagine this genius working in this small house writing masterpieces on a tiny table is quite an experience. Highly recommended
Written February 12, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

MZTParis
Paris296 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2018 • Friends
This house where Honoré de Balzac had once lived and written is worth a visit.

At No. 47 Rue Raynouard in Paris’s chic 16th district (arrondissement), the house, a single-storey with green shutters is in a small garden with benches where you could sit down for a rest and to enjoy the view.

The view is of the Eiffel Tower as it is behind the house.

But, do know that while you are taking photos of the splendid view, and thinking how lucky Balzac had been with such a view, the tower dates from 1889, and by then Balzac was long dead having died in 1850.

He had lived in the house from 1840 to 1847.

The house is not very big, but each room is packed with interesting mementos of the life of this great French novelist.

You will see first editions of his books, his writing desk, his chair, his scribblings, some manuscripts, paintings and engravings and several sculptures of him. There are also sculptures of him in the garden.

Beautiful is the fireplace in the house.

The museum is free and there is a souvenir shop, but do not look for anything like a fridge magnet, as you will only be able to buy recently-published copies of his books.

The nearest Metro station to the house is Passy of Line No. 6 and from there street signs will direct you to the house.

Passy Station opens on Place Charles Dickens and Rue Raynouard leads from it.

The museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

It is never packed, but during the week, there could be many scholars and students about.
Written May 30, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

AKLemstra
Amsterdam, The Netherlands6 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2018 • Family
Nice little gem of a museum, with a beautiful garden. Worth the visit. But you need to look for it as it is a bit hidden.
Written March 23, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Marini
Luxembourg City, Luxembourg3,043 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2017 • Couples
It is interesting to see the room where Balzac a monument of french literature wrote La Comédie Humaine, a panorama of post-Napoleonic French life, considered as his magnum opus.
Written August 21, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Showing results 1-10 of 39
Is this your Tripadvisor listing?
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.
Claim your listing

Maison de Balzac - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

All Paris HotelsParis Hotel DealsLast Minute Hotels in Paris
All things to do in Paris
Day Trips in Paris
RestaurantsFlightsVacation RentalsTravel StoriesCruisesRental Cars