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Touring Eiffel Tower in mid-June without pre-booking

Hi guys,

Have read numerous posts on how to conquer the tower but still need some expert advise.

My wife and I will be reaching Paris on June 27th (Saturday) and can leave our hotel room (near Les Halles) around 3pm. Were planning to cover Eiffel Tower this day.

Question: If we were to que for a stairs ticket at around 3:30pm, climb till 1st level and then take individual supplement tickets to 2nd floor and to the summit, how long would it take us to get back on the ground (assuming we spend ~40-45mins at the summit).

Are the ques really long at this time for the Stairway access and for catching the elevator from the 2nd floor. Are their ques on the way down as well?

Am i better off buying a tour ticket...EUR 40 pp !!!


Posted by
7141 posts

I think there are questions that you should be asking yourself.

How physically healthy are you to do the 300 steps from the ground floor to the 1st level up and back? If you can do it, do you really want to do it? There is a chance that about step 275 either way that 40 euros per person could be looking pretty good.........

If you feel this is a good choice for you, then your plan is probably going to be successful. There will be waits for the elevator from the 2nd floor, and waits to go back down.

Posted by
11494 posts

The stairs are not that bad.. really.. I did them first time at 45.. I am not fit.. I do not hang out at a gym or take yoga or bike or anything. I can walk 4-5 miles however.

The line for the elevators the first time I took the stairs was insanely long.. line went well past a sign that said " 1.5 hours wait from here" .. Wait for stairs was maybe 20 minutes.. climb about the same. We climbed to the second level.. where we lined up for a summit ticket for my son ( you cannot get summit ticket on level one.. you must go to level two) .. we waited 15 minutes max there.. then he went up( I did not bother.. I have been to top and consider it a waste of time and money for me.. but I suppose most folks want to do it once) .. The views from Second level are great.

I have done it again since then.. and I am a fair amount older now.

I would advise you to take the elevator down( you are allowed) as I found it harder on knees going down then up.

Posted by
216 posts

Never seen long queues for the stairs. The elevators for the summit vary but are usually at least 30-45 minutes (and often 1 hour+) when I've been: May, late June, early July, March.

You can get tickets for the summit when you buy your tickets for the stairs. But you have to walk up to level 2.

You won't spend 45 minutes at the top other than in line for the descent. It's tiny and crowded.

There is lots to do and see on level 1 (to catch your breath) and level 2. Some of those things are indoors and worth it to get out of the sun for a bit/cool off.

You could be done in 2- 4 hours. Then you've earned a great dinner!

Depending on the weather, it may be worth doing later in the evening to enjoy the sunset/late night sparkling. Crowds drop off at dinner time and after.