From the Place de la Concorde you can already see the famous Champs Elysées with its Arc de Triomphe. I didn't walk all the way to the arch this time though, as I have been here before. So for now (until a next visit to Paris), you have to do it with this distance shot of the arch. If you haven't been to the Arc de Triomphe before, I can really recommend in going here and especially climbing to the top. The views over Paris from the Arc de Triomphe are wonderful and in my opinion even better then the views from the Eiffel Tower.
The Arc de Triomphe de l'Etoile is the world's largest triumphal arch with its 51 meters in height and is 45 meters width. The structure was inspired by the Roman Arch of Titus; designed by Jean François Thérèse Chalgrin. It was commissioned by Napoleon to commemorate France's military victories in 1805.
Admission to the little museum inside the Arc de Triomphe including a visit to the rooftop is 6.10€. The Arc de Triomphe is open daily 9:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m and in winter (Oct. 1 - March 31) daily 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Closed on public holidays.
The huge arch, erected by Napoleon in 1806, was dedicated to the French Army and was inaugurated in 1836.
The Arch bears the names of famous persons which influenced the country's history and was witness to important events such as the last honors to Victor Hugo or the parade of victorious French troops of the First World War.
To go up to the platform roof you have to climb 284 steps and pass through the exhibition presenting the history of the monument and also significant moments in the history of France.
- Summer months: 10:00-23:00
- Winter months: 10:00-22:30
Last admission 30 min before closing.
This is the world's largest roundabout, but of course it wasn't planned to be a roundabout but a gigantic arch for the victorious soldiers to parade through coming back after the war under Napoleon. The building works were started in 1806 but not finished until 1836.
The arch is gigantic, you can see the people on the ground and perhaps also on the top. It stands 50 m tall, and inside there are 283 steps to climb to reach the viewing platform, or from time to time one can use the lift.
In the open space of the arch there is an Eternal Flame with an unknown soldier from the First World War buried beneath, to make us memorize the victims from the war (not only that war).
Opening hours for the platform: from 10.00 to 23.00 April - September, 10.00 to 22.30 October - March.
Entrance fee: adult 9 Euro, aged 18-25 6,50 Euro, and under 18 is free. The first Sunday of the month November - March is free.
After you've done your last bit of shopping and reached the end of the Champs Elysees, the grand l'Arc de Triomphe (The Arch of Triumph) will greet you in a truimphant glow of yellow light.The first sight of this giant monument will be startling. Understandably so , since it is the largest arch in the world, anyway!
Of course, don't be daft and try to brave the mad traffic surrounding the arch. If you need to know, it is surrounded by 12 great avenues converging in a star shape so that there'll be a crazy carousel of French driving there. Brave it and the next gate that you'll see is the one by St Peter's. Haha!
Tip: In my opinion, the Arc de Triomphe offers a fantastic perspective of Paris and the star shaped convergence of all the roads.
%On hindsight: This is probably just my opinion, but I noted that this giant thing boasts the victories of the little emperor ( Napoleon ) and apparently ignores his exile, imprisonment and early death..
Our first day in Paris started at Triumph Arc (pic 1).
It is a really big Arc that dominates the center. Napoleon commissioned it after his victory at the Battle of Austerlitz in 1805 but it finished in 1836 when he was already dead! Its the largest in the world at 50 metres high. There is a Tourist Info near in case you stil dont have a map
The first thing we did was checking the tomb of the unknown soldier that lies under the Arc and the never-ending fire (pic 2). Along the walls There are a lot of engravings showing battles, and hundreds of names most of them are French generals etc.
Then we bought our ticket and walked up, there is a small museum before the terrace, nothing special but it was helpful to recover after climbing 283 steps :) It is strange to see figures like Alexander the Great but Napoleon was obsessed with greeks and roman conquerors.
The best part of course is at the top where you can enjoy a 360’ view over the city, checking the madness along the 12 avenues that start from here (one of them is Champs Elyesses) taking pictures of us with Eiffel Tower at the background etc
The Arc is open to the public 10.00-23:00(22:30 in winter)
The entrance fee was (January 2011) 9,5 euros but we payed 7,5euros because we had the Paris Visite. Those who are under 26 get inside for free.
If you are doing the L'Axe Historique walk mentioned in my previous review, you'll run smack into this one. Arc de Triomphe de l'Etoile was one of Napoleon's additions to the axis and commemorates those who gave life and limb in the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars. It's the second-largest triumphal arch in the world (the largest is in North Korea) and anchors the middle of a star (etoile) of 12 avenues that radiate out from the center of Place Charles-de-Gaulle Etoile. The funeral procession for the Emperor himself passed beneath its arms, and the remains of French literary hero, Victor Hugo, rested here before his interment in the Pantheon. Today the arc embraces France's Tomb Of The Unknown Soldier and Eternal Flame. It is the beginning point of the annual Bastille Day parade, and finish line for the Tour de France.
On top of the arc is a viewing platform that provides wonderful views of Champs Elysées and other avenues stretching away from the your perch high above the center of the square. You have to climb 284 steps to get there but the reward outweighs the effort!
As this is one of the few attractions in Paris that is open late into the evening, it's a great one for visiting when other museums and churches have closed for the day. We unfortunately did our climb on a drizzly morning and didn't make it back for a nighttime perspective but c'est la vie: next trip!
Entrance to the arc is included in the Paris Museum Pass, otherwise reference this website for hours, closings and entrance fees:
And here is some nice background (don't use for entry fees/hours):
Fun fact: In 1919, one daring (or crazy) Charles Godefroy flew his biplane under the Arc.
Be aware: do NOT try to cross the traffic roundabout unless you have a death wish. Reach the thing in one piece via underground tunnel; there is one on the north side of the Champs Elysées and another on north side of Avenue de la Grande Armee. The Arc has an elevator for elderly or physically challenged visitors but it was out of service when we were there, and it accesses only the museum level. You must be able to climb a flight of 40 or so steps to the top viewing platform. Pedestrian tunnels reaching the arc also involve a fair amount of steps.
The Triumphal Arch dates back to 1806, when Napoléon commissioned Chalgrin to build an arch to the glory of the French Army. Construction on the Arch began in 1806, restarted in 1825, and was not finished until 1836. The Arc de Triomphe is built on the model of ancient Triumphal Arches, but it stands alone because of its monumental size: 50 meters tall and 45 meters wide (164 by 148 feet). The four magnificent high reliefs are crowned by Rude's masterpiece, "The Departure of the Volunteers in 1792".
If the Eiffel Tower is the symbol of Paris, the Arc de Triomph must be a close second. Commenced by Napoleon in 1806, he was long gone before it was finished in 1836. It is interesting that it remains incomplete: the original intention was to add something atop it, as with the Arc de Carrousel in the Tuilleries Gardens, but the question of what should be placed there was never resolved. Beneath the Arch is the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, France’s main war shrine.
Again, this already is well covered with good VT tips. It is easily found where the major road, the Champs Élysées, finishes at the Place de Gaulle (formerly Place de l’Étoile).
When my friend Linda (VTer 36waterfalls) told me she would come to Paris to spend a day with me, I asked her what she would like to do while in Paris and since going up the Arc du Triomphe was one of the things she hadn't done, we decided to do it together!
The Arc du Triomphe is one of Paris's most recognizable monuments. Sitting at the center of the Place de l'Étoile-Charles de Gaulle, its history dates back to 1806, when Napoleon laid out the cornerstone of what was supposed to be a monument to the glory of his army. However, by the time Napoleon's Empire fell, the Arch still hadn't been completed. It was finished under Louis-Philipe in 1836 and now serves to honour all French soldiers and commemorate France's victories. In 1920, on Armistice Day, the tomb of the unknown soldier was added at the foot of the Arch, next to an eternal flame that burns in memory of all those who were killed during the two World Wars and haven't been identified.
The Arc du Triomphe is over 50 m tall and 45 m wide. It is possible to go up to the top of the Arc (after climbing quite a few steps!) for a great view of the Champs-Elysees, but Linda and I both prefered the view from the Arc du Triomphe to the Grand Arche de la Defense, which sits at the center of Paris's business district. It's also quite interesting and impressive to watch cars manoeuvre the large roundabout that surrounds the Arc du Triomphe!
You can go up the Arc du Triomphe during the day or during the evening, every day of the week. Admission costs 8 Euros but you can use your Museum Pass if you have one.
It’s located at the western end of the Champs Elysees in the centre of the Place Charles de Gaulle. This triumphal arch is dedicated people who fought for France during the Napoleonic Wars. On the top and inside of the arc there are all the names of generals and war battles. Under the arc is the tomb of the unknown solder from I World War.
From the top you will have amazing view of the Paris.
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