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Eiffel Tower(12 Posts)
We are off to Paris in October half term and want to take 2 x DD (7 & 5) up the Eiffel Tower . . . can anyone recommend the best way to do this to a) avoid queuing for hours b) spending a fortune c) walking up ALL the steps with little legs Happy to give the girls a flavour of the tower, probably don't need to hike to the summit! Have seen you can book ahead online but not sure we want a tour guide or a candlelight dinner!!
We queued for hours because I hadn’t booked online. We wanted to do the stairs but I think you can go up in the car thing and be up in a jiffy.
It’s FANTASTIC. The view at the top at night as just out of this world.
Book tickets ahead online. Or book lunch at the tower
Book in advance online as others have said.
There are 3 levels of the Eiffel tower. You can get the lift from bottom to top, that's the most expensive option. You can walk to level 1 and get the lift the rest of the way (there is no option to walk to the top, you can only take the lift to get from level 2-3). Or you can go to level 2 only if you're looking for the cheapest option.
Hope that makes sense!
I went there at that time of year and in hindsight I would now stare at it from a distance.
It is no longer possible to walk underneath it because it is fully encircled by a glass and steel constructed barrier. You will not be able to avoid your points a and b.
The whole surrounding area is full of hawkers selling tat, petition girls (avoid them at all costs and do not be afraid to tell them to fuck off) and other unsavoury characters out to actively fleece or steal from people who go there. Do keep a close eye on any valuables and take as little as possible in terms of items if you do visit.
Two separate security checks (upon entry and on the entrance to the lift up to the first level) run by the most miserable, poorly trained and surly people alive make for a poor experience too.
I would recommend that people buy tickets in advance. The signage to actually find the entrance to the security lines is non existent and we found this mainly by following the wall of glass to the right hand side (we approached the Tower from Ecole Militaire).
The Montparnasse Tower has good views from their observation deck on a clear day and this may be a good alternative.
I agree that the area at the bottom is dodgy as hell - all the more reason to definitely not queue. Book online if you want to do it - and do so ASAP because tickets sell out.
We've visited the Eiffel Tower several times, and, while it is indeed surrounded by hawkers, conmen, queues and surly staff, it is nonetheless worth the trip.
We've always walked up to the 1st floor, then taken the lifts from there, even when the dc were as young as the OP's. Just take your time. Pause on the landings (there are info boards, and the view changes) while faster climbers overtake.
They now advise people with young children not to take the stairs.
Do book as far in advance as you can — I put it off for a bit and when I got round to doing it there were no online tickets left, so we queued.
It is a great thing to have done but was v stressful, and the only time on the whole trip when the dcs bickered unendingly. I, too, now happily gaze at it from afar.
My top tip is not to overlook the need to get back down again. The stairs down are quite exhausting and the queues for the lifts very long. I do think it's worth it but just build extra time as you can't leave quickly!
Be prepared for massive queues for the lifts to get back down... we booked online in June - but even then the whole top to bottom trip took about 3 hours.. we were only at the top for 20 minutes! It was ridiculously busy...
You can still wander under the Eiffel tower without a ticket. The first security cordon is just a bag check; they don't check any tickets. It's much nicer under the Eiffel tower since it's been closed in. It used to be truly horrible.
We couldn't buy online tickets, so had to queue. It wasn't too bad as we got there first thing but it would get much worse as the day goes on. If you expect crowds, queues and hawkers, it's perfectly doable. But the number of people who are crowded into the lifts each time is a shock if you're not used to the Northern line in rush hour.
We took the lift up and the stairs down and it was magical.
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