The Eiffel Tower is the most visited monument in the world, and in history — over the decades hundreds of millions of visitors have journeyed to Paris to climb to its top. That kind of love can be gratifying, but it can also result in crowds, and the lineup time for visiting the Eiffel Tower can be two hours or more. In short, you don't want to just show up hoping to get to the top.
Luckily, there are strategies savvy travelers can use to avoid standing out in the cold. Skip-the-line tours get you past the long lines to a priority elevator, so you are soon up on the Tower, enjoying the views of Paris below. Let's find out how to skip the lines, and discover other information you'll need when visiting the Eiffel Tower.
Eiffel Tower Guided Tour to Level 2
Eiffel Tower Summit, Priority-Access
We know we've said it more than once, but it's worth repeating that skipping the lines at the Eiffel Tower is one of the best moves you can make when planning your trip to Paris. After all, you don't want to spend your precious time there waiting in line, do you? So, be sure to check our updated advice on the best Eiffel Tower tours that get you past the lines.
The Eiffel Tower is open every day of the year, so you can visit at your leisure. But keep in mind what we said about the lines being long. This is particularly important during the peak summer months and the Christmas season, popular seasons for visiting Paris.
Recently the Tower has instituted improved security measures including controlled access through checkpoints, just like the Paris museums have in place. Entrance to the esplanade (the area beneath the tower) is still free, but now you must enter through one of two security gateways, east and south. You will need to go through the checkpoints even if you have a timed tour or a ticket, so be sure to allow yourself enough time. If you have reservations for Le Jules Verne restaurant there is a special entrance at the front of the line at the south entrance. You'll need to show the attendant a valid reservation confirmation.
2021 Update. From July 21, 2021, all our visitors to the Eiffel Tower aged 18 and over must present a COVID certificate of vaccination or testing.
If you haven't booked a tour you'll need to head over banks the Seine in the 7th Arrondissement and get in line. Here is some of the information you'll need to know.
Adult ticket prices for the elevators are about €17 for the elevator to Level 2, or about €26 to get you all the way to the top, to Level Three. Young people and children save a couple of euros. Stair tickets, when available which only get you to Level Two, are around 10€. However, we've been there in the off-season and found that it was free to climb the stairs. You might get lucky! That is, if you're the type of person who considers climbing 704 steps a lucky thing.
Climbing the stairs is not only a great workout, but a chance to see the tower in a unique way. You get a real feeling for the construction of the tower and even what it must have been like to work on it. And the views are fantastic!
You can now buy Eiffel Tower tickets in advance on the official ticket office. You can't always get the time and date you'd like. Note that holding tickets only lets you skip the ticket line, not the line waiting to get to the elevators. Only a guided tour can offer that.
Security gate at the Eiffel Tower
The best times to go to Paris to visit the tower, when there are the smallest crowds and the waiting period is often less, are November to early December and January to early February, but avoid the holiday season and weekends.
Looking back, it seems surprising that you used to be able to wander beneath the Eiffel Tower day or night. Nowadays in Paris, with a greater awareness of safety, visitors to museums and monuments have to pass through a security gate. It's the same at the Eiffel Tower as it is at the Louvre and Musée d'Orsay. A minor inconvenience, but greater peace of mind.
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Metro: Bir-Hakeim. Line 6 runs above ground for part of its route and you get a nice view of the tower as you cross the Seine, if you're coming from the direction of Etoile.
Metro: Alma-Marceau. We like this station on Line 9 that comes up on the Right Bank next to Princess Diana's de facto memorial flame. It's a lovely stroll across the bridge and along the Seine to the tower.
Metro: Trocadero. Served by Lines 6 and 9, this station puts you across the river where you can take in another wonderful view before crossing the bridge to the tower.
Eiffel Tower Guide
• Skip-the Line Tours…
• Visiting The Eiffel Tower…
• Eiffel Tower Restaurants…
• Eiffel Tower Information…
• History of the Eiffel Tower…
• Facts About the Tower…
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