Pompidou CentreParis is not all about tradition and architecture of bygone eras. Take a look at the Pompidou Centre and you will know why. Inaugurated in 1977, Centre Pompidou [Place Georges Pompidou, +33 144781233] is properly known as Centre National d’Art et de Culture Georges Pompidou. The building stands out in the Marais district, with its whimsical, high-tech architecture. Designed by Renzo Piano, Richard Rogers and Gianfranco Franchini, the centre is a raw and artistic building that features an exposed skeleton, enveloped by steel and glass, cushioned only by large, brightly-coloured pipes. This truly new-age building is dedicated to housing equally revolutionary pieces of modern art.

The open space on the ground floor of the centre is known as the Forum du Centre Pompidou. Fitted with a large information desk, this area is open to the public and is especially reserved for temporary exhibitions. The Pompidou centre is also home to the Musée National d’Art Moderne [+33 144781233 ad/ch €(8-12)/ Free (Seasonal Pricing)], which features a large collection of modern art from 1905 onwards. With over 50 000 works, the museum spans across the 4th and 5th levels of the centre; and it features works by surrealists, cubists and even pop art (think Picasso, Dali, Matisse etc…).

Intended to be an interdisciplinary building, the centre also houses the giant Bibliothéque Centre Pompidou [entry: Rue Beaubourg +33 144781215] - a free public library that is situated partially in the 1st floor and completely in the 2nd and 3rd levels. Its entrance is located at rue du Renard. Head west of the central building and you will arrive at the section known as Atelier Brancusi. This part of the building is dedicated to the Romanian-born sculptor, Constantin Brancusi. Considered to be one of the pioneers of modernism, Brancusi made a name for himself in France with his abstract works. He died at the age of 81, leaving behind over 200 sculptures and thousands of photographs.

Whilst wandering around the Pompidou, remember to pop by its southern end along Place Igor Stravinsky as it is home to a delightful display of interactive and quirky artworks, such as the fascinating mechanical fountains that are fitted with treble clefts and giant red lips. This fancy area will surely pick you up on a dull day.