Fodor's Expert Review Manufacture des Gobelins
Tapestries have been woven at this spot in southeastern Paris, on the banks of the long-covered Bièvre River, since 1662. The Galerie des Gobelins stages exhibitions on two light-flooded floors, highlighting tapestries, furnishings, timepieces, and other treasures mostly drawn from the state collection. Guided visits to the Manufacture (in French, by reservation only) allow a fascinating look at weavers—from students to accomplished veterans—as they work on tapestries and rugs that take years to complete. Also on-site is a highly selective school that teaches weaving, plus a workshop charged with repairing and restoring furnishings belonging to the French government, which are also stored here in a vast concrete warehouse.