This is a guest post by my dear friend Ashley Smith. Ashley is an adventurer, music-lover, photographer, and writer. In November 2014, Ashley moved from her home in Toronto, Canada to spend 13 months in Ireland. While she was there, she made a point to explore a diverse array of European cities that called to her wanderlusting heart; inevitably having great adventures along the way. Ashley is once again based in the GTA and has great plans for the future as an explorer – both as a traveler, and as an authority in her home city. I am honored to share her stories with my readers. Enjoy!
Ah, Paris! The Eiffel Tower is one of the busiest tourist attractions in Paris. Queues for lift tickets can take you over an hour, and the lifts are jammed with tourists eager to get to the top. If you have a little patience and don’t mind a bit of a work out, there’s always the stairs! Here’s why I opted to stretch my legs on my visit to this iconic landmark:
- No queues
I really don’t like lines and I will show up early for things to avoid them. There is just something that makes me really frustrated about lines, and this feeling is stronger when I’m travelling because I feel like I’m wasting precious time just standing in A DAMN LINE! There were no queues to purchase stairs tickets, and I’m sure if there is a line it’s significantly shorter than the line to buy tickets for the lift.
- Save some money
I’m a budget traveler; partly for necessity and partly because I enjoy challenging myself to find non-monetary ways to have a ball while I’m wandering. You better believe the tickets for the stairs are cheaper than the lift!
Individual Adult Rates:
Lift entrance ticket (valid to 2nd floor) – €11,00
Lift entrance ticket to top – €17,00
Stairs entrance ticket (valid to 2nd floor) – €7,00
- It’ll help burn off the calories from the bread, macarons and cheap wine you’ve been drinking
During my time in Paris, I’m fairly certain I only ate baguettes, cheese, macarons and drank cheap white wine (like 2euro kind of cheap). I definitely needed a fun way to balance out that deliciously awful eating pattern. Though I probably had a crepe right after I left the tower, so it probably didn’t balance anything out if I am being honest with myself.
- You can stop as much as you want to take photos, or just take in the sights
I’m a photographer, so this is a huge plus for me; I liked getting to snap city shots along the way. Since the stairs aren’t as popular, it’s easy to take your time without having other tourists in your way or you being in their way.
5. The payoff feels more rewarding when you work for it!
After scaling 600 stairs, it feels extremely satisfying to touch that last step, get up on the platform and take in the views. Because of the uphill climb, your blood is pumping and the adrenaline is flowing; this combined with the excitement of completing the climb is enough to make you feel on top of the world, both literally and figuratively.
So whattya say? If you plan to visit the Eiffel Tower on your trip to Paris, give those leg muscles a work out and try the stairs. Then reward yourself with more bread and wine!
*N.B.: You are only allowed to walk up to the second platform. I personally think the views here were spectacular and didn’t feel the need to jump in the lift to very top. However, you can take the lift from the second platform to the very top if you feel so inclined.