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Eiffel Tower – A Brief History

eiffel towerThe Eiffel Tower is named after Gustav Eiffel, the chief engineer and architect of this monumental creation. Built primarily to celebrate the 100 year anniversary of the French Revolution during the Paris Exposition in 1889, this marvel has survived controversies, threats of razing for scrap and many other dramas to become one of the most recognized architectural symbols in the world. Approximately 324 meters high, the Eiffel Tower is acknowledged to shrink and expand with changes in weather and temperatures. Notwithstanding which, it was still one of the tallest buildings of its time, and boasts a total of 108 stories and 3 viewing platforms.

Visiting the Eiffel Tower

The good news is that the Eiffel Tower is open morning to night, every day, every season, all through the year. Some days will be crowded, many evenings will be chilly, but if you have done your homework and are well prepared, there’s no wrong time to visit this wonderful tower.

Eiffel towerThe Eiffel Tower is based within a gigantic square, and depending on the bus or metro you are taking, you can approach it from any of several directions. Each of the tower legs has its own ticket counter so if you would like to go up, you can join in the queue closest to you (ticket options include walking up or taking the elevator). During the summer tourist season, the queues can be long, snaky and seemingly endless. The good news is that they move quickly; the bad news is that just when you sigh in relief at finishing with one queue, you will find yourself at the end of another long one for elevators at each level. Hold on though, the view at the top, especially at night, is totally worth it!

Paris offers so many options for viewing the city from a height, you may wonder if the ticket price for the Eiffel Tower (not included in any of the city pass options) is actually worth the cost. If you have the luxury of taking advantage of them all, you may find that each of the monuments offers a rather distinctive vantage point of the city, and because of its unique location, the Eiffel Tower indeed offers one of the best views, especially of the beautiful flow of the river Siene through the lofty expanse of the cityscape.

Appreciating the Eiffel Tower

One of the biggest injustices you can do the Eiffel Tower is to go during the daytime, view it from the base, dismiss it is as an iron monolith and come away disappointed. The Eiffel Tower demands viewing from varying distances, in varying lights and at different heights. Try taking a bus ride to the tower instead of the metro; ducking in and out of your view as you drive in closer, you will be awe struck as the tower gradually expands with proximity. You must absolutely take in the Eiffel Tower after dark; dressed up in a sparkly, luminescent orange glow, the Eiffel Tower by night will take your breath away. And if you have the time, take in a view of Paris from the Eiffel Tower at night. The height of the structure, the detailing of the work as you ride up in the elevator and finally the graceful grandeur of the city by night, will all help you realize just what it is about Paris and its most famous landmark, that lure millions of visitor over, year after year.

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