Moulin Rouge

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The Moulin Rouge and Its Heyday

Opened in 1889, the Moulin Rouge remains one of Paris' most legendary spots. But what is it about this cabaret that has awed so many - even inspiring a hit Hollywood movie? Here are five facts about its sensational beginnings that made history.

  • The Can-Can

    1. The Can-Can

    This cheeky dance is synonymous with the Moulin Rouge, whose dancers elevated it to an art form, attracting visitors from across the world.

  • La Goulue

    2. La Goulue

    Immortalized on the Moulin Rouge’s iconic poster, La Goulue was the star of the cabaret from the very beginning. The venue owes its early runaway success to her outrageous antics.

  • Royal Visit

    3. Royal Visit

    Even the Prince of Wales visited the Moulin Rouge at the height of its popularity. Recognizing him in the crowd, La Goulue famously screamed, "Hey, Wales, the champagne's on you!"

  • The Garden’s Gigantic Elephant

    4. The Garden’s Gigantic Elephant

    The elephant from the movie really existed. It was so big that a staircase ran up its leg and a hidden stage was in its stomach, housing exclusive performances for male audiences.

  • A Taste for Scandal

    5. A Taste for Scandal

    Scandal was commonplace, but no performance caused as much furore as an Egyptian-themed dance in 1907, resulting in a riot after two female dancers shared an amorous kiss.

Planning Your Visit

  • One for the Adults

    True to its roots, the Moulin Rouge's performances remain racy – though always tasteful, of course – and thus may not be suitable for children. While children above the age of six are allowed in, some parents may prefer to treat themselves to an adults-only night out and find a babysitter for the evening.

  • Dress Code

    As a high-class venue, the Moulin Rouge expects visitors to come smartly dressed. A jacket and tie for men is appreciated, while shorts, sports clothing, and sneakers are not allowed.

  • First-come, First-served

    Although it is necessary to reserve your tickets for the show and dinner, tables are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis. It's worth arriving early to score a good table near the stage to best admire the spectacular dances, lavish costumes, and elaborate sets.

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    Moulin Rouge is open all year, except for major holidays such as Christmas and Easter. Opening hours from 7PM.
  • Is it expensive?
    Prices vary depending on the tickets purchased.
  • Will I need a guide?
    No.
  • How to get there
    Moulin Rouge is located at 82 Boulevard Clichy - the nearest metro station, on line 2, is Blanche.
  • Additional information

    • Dress smart - no shorts, sneakers, or sports gear

    • Some shows may be unsuitable for younger viewers

Other Sightseeing Options in Moulin Rouge

Want to discover all there is to do in Moulin Rouge? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Moulin Rouge

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 4,864 reviews

The show was its self was and amazing experience, both me and my partner loved it. The only down side was we were shown to our seats to the be moved away from in the middle to in the corner which restricted our view of the show.

Excellent show with spectacular dancing formations and artists scenes.

It is a must see in Paris and everything was really well organised

Absolutely loved every second. Would recommend to anyone.

Fun, exciting, and beautiful all around! Must see!