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The Eiffel Tower by Night

Home > Paris > Day Trips | Romantic | Views
by Cressida Ryan (subscribe)
Classicist and traveller
Published December 5th 2014
Romance and puddled iron
A golden glow of lights, the seductive swoop of the iron as it arches up, the romance of looking out over a city at night. If you weren't already convinced of Paris' romance, a visit to the Eiffel Tower at night will make sure you leave entranced. For a long time this was the tallest manmade structure in the world. At 324m it is certainly magnificent, and in 1889 when it was first built, a revolution in puddled iron, it was even controversial.

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Approaching the Eiffel Tower at night


Gustave Eiffel, a master engineer, designed the structure as an entrance into the 1889 World's Fair, but it's become one of the most recognisable structures in the world in its own right.

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The tower up close in sections


The first floor houses a restaurant; if you're not booked in, you may well be whipped on upstairs, as this seems very popular. Up on the second floor you have lots of options. There are gift shops and cafes scattered around. Around the edge you can gaze at Paris through the wire mesh, even using a telescope to hone on in particular spots.

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Gift shop on the second level


There's a short flight of stairs up to a sublevel where the lift takes you to the top. This is reasonably well organised, but queues funnel into one corridor with four lifts, so it does feel a little chaotic. Your ticket is once again scanned, and up you go.

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Going up!


At the top, Mr Eiffel built himself a small apartment to host swish tea parties and show off his amazing creation. Now it's set up as a museum scene, offering a window into the life of the man himself.

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Gustave Eiffel taking tea


The most exciting bit though is probably the champagne bar. What else do you need when on top of the world but some fizz to toast it with! If you want a bit of education, the gallery depicts the heights of the tallest structure in each of the world's countries, compared with the Eiffel Tower. Over a century after its construction, remarkably little competes with it.

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Tall building of the world


If you're not worried about heights, the views are incredible. Particularly at night, the sweeping boulevards, maze of side roads and major sites all stand clear. There's one 'dark' spot which turns out to be a major park, where of course there is no street lighting. Viewing the city at night teaches you so much about its rhythm. If you want to explore this further, they've even launched an app. After all, at that height you're guaranteed good mobile reception, aren't you?

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The Arc de Triomphe from the Eiffel Tower


We all know the iconic shape of the tower as it looms over Paris. Until you've stood under it, in it, on top of it, particularly at night, it's impossible to understand just how gloriously imposing, beautiful and awesome it is.

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The Eiffel Tower from below


Between five to and past the hour, at night, the tower comes alive with glimmering white lights described as 'champagne'. From afar you see the tower sparkle, its ten minute window acting as a great timepiece to tell you it's around the hour change. From inside the tower the lights flash to make you feel like the building is the paparazzi assaulting you. It's a heady experience. One note of caution - if you're epileptic this did feel a little like strobe lighting and should probably be avoided if it's a known trigger.

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A twinkling tower


The lifts only take short amounts of time to get between levels. If you want to walk, you need to leave more time, and arrive before 6pm. When you arrive, you're swiped through a security gate in one corner of the tower. Bags are checked for security. It's a good idea to buy a ticket in advance and avoid the queues. Rates vary, but 15 Euros would get an adult to the top. Guided tours are available. Some things are weather dependent. Right on the banks of the Seine, it's in the heart of Paris and is easy to get to on foot or by public transport.

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Paris from above

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Why? A glorious monument with great views
When: variable by season, 09:00-00:00 summer, 09:30-11:00 winter
Where: Central Paris
Cost: variable
Your Comment
I've never seen what the Eiffel Tower looks like from inside, so it was nice to see some pictures.
by Bryony Harrison (score: 4|12442) 1744 days ago
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