Should You Go to the Eiffel Tower? Episode 12

Categories: First Time in Paris, Paris

This episode features our frequent and very popular guest Elyse Rivin. If you enjoy her episodes, please consider supporting her on Patreon.


On this week's episode of Join Us in France we celebrate the 125th anniversary of the Eiffel Tower. Should you go see it? What's so great about it?

The Man Behind the Tower

We talk about the man behind it and the technological innovations that made the Eiffel Tower possible. Gustave Eiffel entered into a contest to create a monument to adorn the entrance to the 1889 World Fair. The Eiffel Tower was not supposed to stay up for more than a few years, but it was so impressed foreign visitors that Paris authorities decided to keep it.

Love / Hate Relationship With Anything New: It's a French Thing!

Elyse also tells us that while some Parisians hated it, but most loved it right from the start. Old French men can be the worst curmudgeons, and intellectuals were almost always old French men. They don't like anything they didn't come up with or anything that challenges their esthetic sensibilities.  So they complained. But once it was up it charmed everyone and they lost that battle, thank goodness!

Changes to the Eiffel Tower

There has been recent improvements to the Eiffel Tower, and there are many more to come. In particular when it comes to the security around the Eiffel. It is such an icon that it is at high risk for terror attacks. It is also under high surveillance, so don't let that keep you away!

What If You Don't Want to Line Up? What's the Best Place to See the Eiffel Tower?

How should you visit the Eiffel Tower? How to not be in line forever? What's the best vantage point to see it from the outside? All of that and more on today's show. Enjoy!


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Categories: First Time in Paris, Paris

4 Replies to “Should You Go to the Eiffel Tower? Episode 12”

  1. As an American, I never thought much of the Eiffel Tower other than it was a rather industrial-looking piece of sculpture. Then when I had the chance to visit it, I totally changed my mind. At night, especially, when it’s all lit up, it’s beautiful. And it’s much larger than I imagined. The view from the top is exquisite, although they need to wash the windows more often. 🙂 We visited it not long after 9/11 and we were quite relieved at the level of security.

  2. Great episode. I was so glad you mentioned the Statue of Liberty connection as most people don’t know that. I think you gave Edison credit for inventing radio and telegraph. He did invent a lot of things including industrial invention… but not those two.

  3. Hello Chris and welcome to Join Us in France. Interesting post you wrote about being unable to use a US chip card in Charles de Gaulle airport. I couldn’t find a date on it, when did this happen? The crazy thing is Elyse has a similar card (with a chip but no pin) and used it to buy tickets for the underground in Paris from an automated machine. It worked for her. But RER and metro don’t use the same machines, so it’s entirely possible that the one is setup for chip-only American cards and the other is not. I hope this all gets sorted out quickly. In the meantime, if you have any problems with a machine try to find a teller (or any employee), French people are really good at going all out to help you IF you ask for help. I think this is something we’ll address on the show soon. French people LOVE it when you ask for help. 99% of them will do a lot to help you if you just ask. Happy travels!