No building better symbolises Paris than the Tour Eiffel. Maupassant claimed he left Paris because of it, William Morris visited regularly to avoid having to see it from afar – and it was originally meant to be a temporary structure. The radical cast-iron tower was built for the 1889 World Fair and the centenary of the 1789 Revolution by engineer Gustave Eiffel.
Eiffel made use of new technology that was already popular in iron-framed buildings. Construction took more than two years and used some 18,000 pieces of metal and 2,500,000 rivets. The 300-metre (984-foot) tower it was the tallest structure in the world until overtaken by New York’s Chrysler Building in 1930.
Various lifts ply their way up and down, including two double-cabin electric lifts between the second and third floor; from the bottom, you can walk as far as the second level, a total of 674 steps. There are souvenir shops, two restaurants and several cafés. The smart Jules Verne restaurant, on the second floor, has its own lift in the south tower pillar entrance.
At the top (third level), there’s a champagne bar if you fancy treating yourself. Or just enjoy the spectacular views from 276 metres. Every evening, for five minutes on the hour, 20,000 flashbulbs attached to the tower provide a beautiful effect.
Ticket prices and opening times
Eiffel Tower tickets vary in price depending on how far up you want to go and how you want to get there. At time of writing, standard adult-rate tickets on the official Eiffel Tower website are priced as follows:
Tickets with access to the second floor by stairs: €11.30
Tickets with access to the second floor by lift: €18.10
Tickets with access to the second floor by stairs followed by a lift to the top: €21.50
Tickets with access all the way to the top by lift: €28.30
If you fancy visiting with a guide and learning more about this iconic monument, click the ’Book online‘ button above for options on visiting as part of a tour.
How long are the queues for the Eiffel Tower?
Depending on who you ask, queues can last anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours. The official Eiffel Tower website advises visiting between 9am-11am or 8pm-10.30pm for shorter entry times.
What to do around the Eiffel Tower
Around the Eiffel Tower, between the 7th and 16th arrondissements, the city is full of art. From the Museum of Modern Art and the Palais de Tokyo to the Quai Branly Museum or the Rodin Museum (don’t forget to stroll through their beautiful gardens), the area covers a wide cultural spectrum. From the Pont des Invalides to the Champ-de-Mars, you’ll feel like you’re strolling through picture-postcard Paris... And because you’ll need more than a day to explore it all, staying in a nearby hotel isn’t a bad idea. If the Eiffel Tower has got you in the mood for famous sights, take a look at our pick of unmissable Paris attractions.
Visiting the Eiffel Tower during the Paris 2024 Olympics
From July to August 2024, the Champ-de-Mars (the long stretch of green space running from the Eiffel Tower to the École Militaire) will be transformed into a giant stadium for the Paris Olympics.
The Eiffel Tower Stadium – as the new venue will be known – will be located roughly in the centre of the Champ-de-Mars (between the École Militaire to the south and the Eiffel Tower itself to the north) and will host beach volleyball (July 27-Aug 10) and the Paralympic blind football (Aug 30-Sep 7). Right in front of the École Militaire, the Arena Champ-de-Mars (currently the temporary Grand Palais Éphémère) will host judo (Jul 27-Aug 3) and the freestyle wrestling and Greco-Roman wrestling competitions (Aug 5-11).
Need tickets? If you registered before April 20 on the official ticketing platform and are lucky enough to be selected, you’ll receive an email with your individual ticket purchasing window. Otherwise, tickets to attend events will be available for purchase in late 2023 or early 2024. Be quick during this final phase of ticket sales, as they’ll be sold on a first-come, first-served basis.
How to get to there
You can reach the Eiffel Tower via Line 8, from Ecole Militaire or La Motte-Picquet – Grenelle stations (also accessible via Lines 6 and 10), and via RER C (Champ-de-Mars – Tour Eiffel). If you’re coming by car, the Pullman Tour Eiffel covered parking lot will be the closest option, costing around €40 for 24 hours. For a slightly more budget-friendly alternative, consider the Tour Eiffel Quai Branly parking, just a seven-minute walk away (around €30 for 24 hours).
Once you’re at the tower, it’s around a six-minute walk to where the Eiffel Tower Stadium will be located and a 13-minute walk to Arena Champ-de-Mars/Grand Palais Éphémère (at the south of Champ-de-Mars), or you can catch bus 82 to shave a few minutes off.