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Eiffel Tower

My family are going to be in Paris April 15 until April 17. We are planning on going up the Eiffel Tower. What I want to know is what is the best time do do it? I have the website where I can but my tickets before we arrive. Is there a better time to go up to get the best pictures?
Also I am the one in the family who is scared of heights is it really that bad?

Posted by
9110 posts

At the top you have two options:

being away from the edge and inside looking out over a chest-high photo/map affair showing what's in front of you

being outside at about a thousand feet and being able to look almost straight down through stuff that's about as view-blocking as playground fence

pick one.

Don't buy tickets prior to arrival since the weather might be clobbered for the time you picked and you would have wasted the money.

Photos from the top generally stink since Paris is at the bottom of a saucer and the dish is filled with smog most of time. Hope for a windy day, but not so much that they close the place. It's clear at night and the lines are shorter, but ........photographs.

Posted by
2048 posts

Kari - I've been to Paris several times and going to the top of the Eiffel Tower is always on my "must do" list. I have some great photos that I've enlarged and have displayed around the house. Day or night, it's a terrific experience. Not sure about the afraid of heights part. You have to stop on the second floor to change elevators; if you’re not comfortable, just stay there. The view is good from both levels. If you have time, take a boat ride on the bateau mouche - the Eiffel Tower looks great at night with the twinkling lights. Have a wonderful trip!

Posted by
71 posts

Regarding heights: when we went to the very top of the Eiffel Tower we stayed inside because it was so cold and windy outside (at night in February). So we were inside looking out through the glass. The view was great and worth it but none of that scary feeling like being outside.

Posted by
1525 posts

We were there at about 2PM and enjoyed our visit even though it was a 4-hour ordeal from beginning to end, all the way up and down.

Most people suggest going up near sunset for the city lights and to avoid the worst crowds.

We didn't see much evidence of smog. The view was fine. I found the most stunning view from the 2nd level. From the top, you essentially see the same thing just from farther away and with less detail.

If you are energetic, take the steps up to level two. It's interesting to climb within the webbing of the "feet". The steps are easy with rest areas, but there are a LOT of them!

I wouldn't buy tickets ahead of time except maybe less than 48 hours ahead with a good weather forecast.

Posted by
354 posts

On the morning I planned to visit to the Eiffel Tower, the entire upper half was shrouded in mist/clouds. If I had purchased advance tickets, I would have been out of luck. You have to decide if the benefits of avoiding the ticket line outweigh the chance of bad weather. You might also consider a visit to the top of the Arc de Triomphe at dusk, which has a fine view of the tower and its twinkling lights.

Posted by
1308 posts

Another comment regarding heights: I have been to the Eiffel Tower many times but have only been to the first level once and have no desire to go to the top. If you don't like heights, you do not have to go to the top to love and appreciate the Eiffel Tower. It's beautiful from the ground and the view is fine from the first level.

Posted by
207 posts

I am also afraid of heights, I went up to the second level and stayed there. That didn't bother me and the scenery was beautiful.

Posted by
27 posts

So most of you would then wait to get the tickets there instead of getting them ahead of time?

Posted by
520 posts

Definitely wait to buy your tickets, for the reasons others have mentioned. You will have much more flexibility. In mid-April it is unlikely you will encounter long lines at the ticket booth.

Posted by
115 posts

I was wondering if you can buy the tickets on-line IN Paris the day before you plan on going (or that morning) when you will know better what the weather will be and when you can get there more precisely.? Does anyone know if this is possible, or do you have to buy them on line weeks in advance?

Posted by
71 posts

We stood in line outisde about 45 minutes in February. More lines inside to get up and to get down. I wouldn't assume no lines in April.

Posted by
18 posts

I would buy tickets once you are there. We were there just 10 days ago, Mar 15, and we waited 90 minutes for tickets.

Posted by
239 posts

We were there at the beginning of Oct 06...we got there right when it opened and walked right in without a wait. Great views without a lot of people around, so it was perfect!!

Posted by
119 posts

Kari, I am very afraid of heights- the top of the Eiffel was no problem you should feel very secure with the wall and the fencing. I have been up during the day and at night, the most magical time was upon leaving we turned and saw the towers lights starting to twinkle. Go for it!

Posted by
11503 posts

Buy tickets ahead of time,, but only to second level. Once on second level you can send rest of the family to top, IF weather is clear,, you can buy tickets on the second level and the line is never as long as it is on the ground. You can stay on the second level,, they will have to return to the second level as that elevator does not go to ground. I did this with my 14 yr old son,, he went to top , I did not.