Arc de Triomphe

Arc de Triomphe, Paris

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One of Paris‘ most iconic landmarks, the Arc de Triomphe is located at the end of the Champs-Elysées, in the Charles de Gaulle traffic square. No fewer than 12 starts converge on this grand roundabout. To visit the Arc de Triomphe, use an underground pedestrian tunnel.

The Arc de Triomphe was commissioned by Napoleon to honour the Grande Armee. With a height of 55 metres and a width of 45 metres, Paris‘ Arc de Triomphe is in the top three largest triumphal arches in the world. The arch is beautifully decorated with several detailed sculptures. Below the arch are the names of battles fought during the First French Republic and Napoleon’s empire, as well as the generals who fought in it.

The roof of the Arc de Triomphe is open to visitors daily and offers a great vantage point over the streets of Paris. The viewpoint is reached by a staircase of 284 steps (this is quite a climb) but not to worry there is also a lift!

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Catacombs of Paris

Catacombs of Paris, Paris

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The catacombs are a collection of underground cemeteries from the 18th century. In the 18th century, Paris had a serious problem with housing the deceased. Paris was growing so fast that it could no longer dispose of corpses resulting in corpses in the Seine and the spread of foul odours. Additional cemetery space was urgently needed. The answer was the network of limestone mines dating back to medieval times. These were already there and were not being used.

The catacombs are located 25 metres under the streets of Paris. In the catacombs, you will find works of art of piled-up bones of more than 6 million dead Parisians, arranged here in dark, narrow passages under the streets of Paris.

Today, the Catacombs de Paris are open to visitors. It was Louis-Étienne Héricart de Thury who eventually decided to turn the catacombs into a mausoleum that could be visited. He had the bones and skulls arranged.

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Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris

Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris, Paris

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After the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame is Paris‘ most famous landmark. You probably know Notre Dame from the big fire that took place in 2019. Unfortunately, Notre-Dame is currently closed to visitors until 2024 due to renovation work.

Despite the major fire, the cathedral is without doubt the most famous and most photographed Gothic monument in the world. Construction of the church began in 1163. Almost 200 years later in 1345, the structure was completed. Notre-Dame is a magnificent structure with unprecedented details for its time. It lies picturesquely on the Seine and especially in the evening, this is an atmospheric spot when the cathedral is illuminated. You can enter the cathedral to admire the inside. The gigantic pillars, artworks and stained-glass windows impress everyone.

You will find Notre Dame is located on the Île de la Cité, which is a small island in the middle of the Seine.

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Musée du Louvre

Musée du Louvre, Paris

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Musée du Louvre is a huge art museum. Housed in a former city palace in the heart of Paris, the imposing museum’s showpiece, the pyramid, surrounded by fountains, is an unmissable work of art and sight in itself. It houses 35,000 works of art, making it a museum you could wander around for weeks.

Still, to give you an idea of where to see what, the Musée du Louvre is divided into three different wings: Denon, Richelieu and Sully.

The museum’s collection is divided into eight categories: Egyptian antiquities, Oriental antiquities, Greek, Etruscan and Roman antiquities, Painting western art, Islamic art, Sculpture, Art objects, Graphic art. 

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The Basilica of Sacré Coeur

The Basilica of Sacré Coeur, Paris

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The Basilica of Sacré Coeur stands atop a hill and towers high above the city in the Montmartre district. A basilica in Paris‘ 18th arrondissement, Sacré-Coeur owes its fame to its ornate domes and white colour. The interior of the basilica is a feast for the eyes, the ceilings glisten with the largest mosaic in France, showing Jesus rising next to the Virgin Mary and Joan of Arc.

At the foot of the Montmartre hill you will find a staircase and a small cable car towards the Sacré-Coeur, the staircase is quite a climb of over 220 steps though. But once at the top, you have one of the highest vantage points in Paris from the square in front of the Sacré-Coeur. The view is truly magnificent!

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Eiffel Tower

Eiffel Tower, Paris

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The Eiffel Tower is undoubtedly the most famous landmark in Paris. The impressive structure dates from 1887 and was built for the World’s Fair commissioned by Alexandre Gustave Eiffel. The Eiffel Tower consists of 3 floors and until 2004, with a height of 324 metres, it was the tallest structure in all of France. The climb from the ground floor to the first floor and from the first floor to the second floor both contain 300 steps, so to climb to the second floor you have to climb 600 steps!  

All floors of the Eiffel Tower are open to visitors. On the First Floor, there is a complete glass floor, which you can walk across and from the top of the Eiffel Tower (Vertigo), you have a breathtaking view of the whole of Paris.

More than 6 million people visit the Eiffel Tower every year. The high number of visitors makes for hefty queues at the imposing structure. This is not surprising, considering that for many people it is the picture of Paris and the first thing on their to-do list.

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