Paris Planning – initial thoughts

April 28, 2017 at 9:32 pm Leave a comment

Obviously the biggest deal to Alice will be seeing the Eiffel Tower.

It features heavily in Madeline (from Madeline’s Paris):

It’s also in quite a number of other favorite books: Chasing Degas by Eva Montanari, A Spree in Paree by Catherine Stock,  Adele and Simon by Barbara McClintock, and so on.  We also see it in beloved Disney movies Aristocats and Ratatouille!

Alas, the Eiffel Tower is a bit trickier these days than when I last visited (gasp – 2004!).  Sometimes folks have to wait in line for more than two hours just to buy their tickets.  This does NOT sound like fun with a six year old in tow (or at all really).  There are four options to skip those long lines:

  1. Book reservations in one of the restaurants.  The Jules Verne and 58 Tour Eiffel were completely booked up by the time we looked, so that wasn’t a real option for us.  If folks are going at a less popular time of year or planning more than 3 months in advance (yes, seriously, that’s when I looked!), you can do this, and you get to go to a special elevator and skip the lines.  Of course, you’ll still have to purchase a separate ticket for the elevator ride to the very top, but the worst line is at the bottom.
  2. Join a guided tour.  There are a couple of official options for this.  Our group opted not to do this in order to save a few euros.
  3. Climb the stairs.  If you’re willing to climb to the first or second level (about 300 steps each), then you can purchase a cheaper ticket from a much shorter line.  This is a good option if you want to remain flexible about when you go up if you’re hoping for nice weather or you couldn’t otherwise get tickets for when you want to be there.  I’ve done it before, and the views are pretty great!  And you can still buy a ticket to the top once you’ve climbed the stairs.
  4. Buy tickets online in advance for a specific time.  These can sell out well in advance, so it’s best to plan ahead.  This is what we’ve opted to do as we want to go up on our very first day.

Have you been to the Eiffel Tower?  Which way did you get in?


Entry filed under: Alice, Europe, Future Destinations.

Paris Planning – initial thoughts (2)

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