Tour Eiffel - Bad and good years

Eiffel tower
Believe me it was not my intention to write the 945th tip about la Tour Eiffel but when I came out of the Musée de la Marine at the Trocadero I could not avoid the best view on the Eiffel Tower.

I just realized standing on the esplanade between the Palais de Chaillot that I had never been to the top. I have been more than a dozen times on the Champ de Mars and each time the queues discouraged me. I like to stand at the bottom of the tower and look up to the biggest "Mecano" structure in the world.

As on the day before I had visited the Invalides Army museum and the WW II department with documents of the German occupation, I realised that it was from that Trocadero Esplanade at the exact place where tourists are now viewing the Tour Eiffel that on Sunday June 23, 1940 around 8 am, Adolf Hitler was standing there to view the Tour Eiffel and the occupied Paris. (He would never come back to Paris).

These 4 years were the worst for France and the Tour Eiffel.
They ended with the liberation of Paris by the French 2e Division Blindée under command of general Leclerc on August 25, 1944 and the famous discourse of General De Gaulle:
"Paris outragé ! Paris brisé ! Paris martyrisé ! mais Paris libéré !"

There was fierce fighting at the Champ de Mars when a platoon of Spahis from the 2e DB attacked the Ecole Militaire where 250 Germans resisted during 4 hours against the French troops.
At 12.30 h on August 25, 1944 the French flag was put again on the top of the Tour Eiffel by 6 Sapeurs-Pompiers from the fire brigade of Paris. It took them 25 minutes to climb the 1665 steps under the fire of the German soldiers.

The good years for tourism at the tour Eiffel were back with more than 6.7 millions entries in 2006!

Recently I read in the French press that the access to the Tour Eiffel will be improved in order to reduce the queuing.
It is also the intention to have visitors spend more money once in the tower by offering more catering possibilities. Somebody at the management realised that the prices of the upper restaurant are not for budget travellers!

  • Directions: You can't miss it!!!




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