What is the most known structure of Europe – correct – it is properly The Eiffel Tower in Paris, France. And if you are going to Paris, you are pretty sure to be heading for the top of the tower.
Build in 1889 by the engineer Gustave Eiffel and his company. Over the lifespan, over 250 million people have visited the tower and enjoyed it impressive views over the city, which makes this monument this most-visited paid in the world. The tower is 324 meters and has three main floors. The structure is very stabile, and it only sways 6-7 cm in wind. Furthermore, the height of the tower varies 15 cm, depending on the temperature of the iron.
The first and second floors have restaurants, and the third floor at 276 meters, where Gustave Eiffel used to have his office. There are stairs, all the way to the top, but for a tourist, it is only possible to take the stairs to the second floor. Lifts can also get you from the ground to first and second floor, where yet another lift takes you the last leap to the third floor. At the top, you find the most stunning views over Paris and a little setup showing the small apartment and office of Gustave Eiffel. Of cause a champagne bar – properly for the people proposing at the top of the towers, who hasn’t read our Lonubo with a twist post, and tried to get another original idea.
Often the ticket lines can be pretty long to get up to the tower when we visited the tower, and we waited in line for almost 2,5 hours. So a pretty good piece of advice is to buy the tickets in advance, which is easily done online. Just remember to have plenty of time, as we tried to buy while waiting in line, but you have to book a few days in advance.
Gustave Eiffel presented the project to the public in 1885 with the words: “Not only the art of the modern engineer, but also the century of Industry and Science in which we are living, and for which the way was prepared by the great scientific movement of the eighteenth century and by the Revolution of 1789, to which this monument will be built as an expression of France’s gratitude.”
The tower was subject to a lot of debate before the construction began, both from those did not believe that is was feasible and those who objected to a relationship between architecture and engineering. They thought that the erection of the tower, as they called a hateful column of bolted sheet metal, would ruin the beauty of Paris, and change the city forever. Well, it changes the city alright, but in quite another ways than these people thought. A fun fact is that one of the protestors is said to have eaten his lunch in the tower’s restaurant every day after it was erected because this was the only place in Paris, where the tower was not visible to him.
The tower is lit at nighttime, and at every hour, it lightens up with thousands of flickering lights. Something we will return to in a later separate post. We have so many pictures of the tower that we will split this subject up in a few posts, so you do not drown in pictures. Here is our first photo of the tower and yours truly…