Climbing the Eiffel Tower

>>  Friday, December 07, 2012

When we went to the Eiffel Tower in the summer the queues were horrendous. Hours long, you can buy tickets in advance but I couldn't actually work out how you used those tickets even if you had one. The whole system seemed to be utter chaos.  

In winter it still seemed like chaos but with shorter queues.  We joined a fairly long queue for the stairs only and queued to a single ticket desk.  It could have been 2 but of course one was closed.  We then had to walk back down the stairs we had queued up, to walk around a barrier, to then walk back up again to go through the entrance to the stairs.  It was all most odd and held up by a bottle neck of inadequate and slow security checks follwed by an inefficient ticket booth,  vive la France queuing inefficiency.

But as seems to be the case in much of France, it was really cheap, only €5 each.  Bargain.  They really could have charged much more.

We made it to the first step in less than an hour.
And despite all the other climbers looking a lot younger than us, we held our own and made level one then two without our legs or lungs collapsing!

The whole tower really is a marvellous feat of engineering.

We were really lucky to be up there as it started to get dark.
It was really cool to see the lights of the city coming on.
Whilst using the stairs only goes to the 2nd floor, I was more than happy with the beautiful view. Although for all it's glory, I was not swept away in romance as I am from the view from the Sacre Coeur or as excited as I was watching the traffic from the top of the Arc de Triomphe.

But as the metal work turned that glorious gold, I was happier to study the fretwork much more than the city view.

The walk down was much harder than the walk up because of the extra pressure it put on my back, so be aware that it's not just about fitness for going up.  I really had to take my time coming down but that just meant plenty more time to stand and stare at the engineering and electrics.


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