Arc de Triomphe or Eiffel Tower?

Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 11:50 AM
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Arc de Triomphe or Eiffel Tower?

My husband and I have been to Paris twice and never got up to the Arc or Eiffel tower. We are planning on going to London this Christmas and were thinking about a day trip back to Paris on the Chunnel ($130 a person roundtrip.) My questions are which should we take the time (wait in line) to go up to the top and is it worth the $260 per couple to do that. Thanks!
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 12:10 PM
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We were able to do both in the same day this spring -- a short visit to the Louvre, with a walk/bus ride up the Champs Elysee to the Arc -- then we took the Metro to enjoy the Eiffel tower at dusk. I don't know about the cost of the day trip. We ruled out a day trip to Normandy because of the cost. If you have already enjoyed Paris without feeling the compelling need to see the view from two of the major sites, it might not be worth the $260. On the other hand, we did Paris in a 3 day weekend for the "thrill" of saying we went to Paris for the weekend! It was VERY worth the cost to us.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 12:16 PM
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I'm not sure what your are asking -- is it worth $130 a person to go up in the Eiffel Tower to look down at Paris? (or the Arc, which isn't as tall, but a different location).

no, of course not, unless you have money to burn. My rule of thumb would be if you have to ask, it isn't. Is that really the only reason you would go to Paris for a day and spend that money?
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 12:20 PM
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Christina- The $130 per person I am referring to is the price of the train ride to Paris from London. I would consider a day trip to Paris just to walk around the fascinating city again and to eat a crepe or two. I just want to know if I am "missing out" on anything by not going up the Eiffel tower or Arc.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 12:23 PM
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It's very difficult for us to answer these

IS IT WORTH IT?

questions.

It may be worth it to me, but not worth it to others.

If it's something that you really want to do and you'll regret not going, then yes, it's worth it.

And if I were to pick one or the other, I'd definitely choose Eiffel Tower.

But if your goal is to see Paris from a high viewing point rather than going up Eiffel Tower, you should consider going up Tour Montparnasse. Most likely shorter lines, and cheaper too!
http://www.tourmontparnasse56.com
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 12:32 PM
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The monuments are close together. You could do both on your day trip.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 12:50 PM
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Is the chunnel at full speed yet? If so, isn't it 2+ hours each way.

I respectfully suggest a day trip somewhere within the UK, instead of wasting half a day on the train.

But, that said, it would be a blast to see what you could fit into that finite time in Paris.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 12:51 PM
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I have been to Paris six times and I did not get to the top of the Tour Eiffel until my las trip. Yes I am glad I did it, but I don't have a desire to do it again.

I have not done it, but I think that time of year Montparnass might be a better choice.

There are so many things to do in Paris, I would question if this would be on the top of my list.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 12:53 PM
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If you've already been to Paris twice and didn't make the time to visit either, I would guess they aren't a priority for you... so why now?

Personally I'd save the money and enjoy London more!
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 01:30 PM
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Book lunch at CielDeParis.com on the Montparnasse Tower. The Menu des Gourmands is a bargain at 35€, and you can see every famous monument in the city from your table (if you ask for a window seat).

There's a special elevator (the northmost one) that takes you right to the restaurant, and the ride is free. No lines, no waiting. Maximize your Eurostar investment.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 01:44 PM
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6 times now, and I haven't had time to either - yet. As to views, back in the good-ol'days, when there Samaritan's roof was available, that was nice.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 02:20 PM
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If you know that you will never ever go to Paris again, I guess it would be sorta worth it, however, you can't predict the weather (no view if it's crummy, eh?) or the crowds. You might run out of time and have to go back empty-handed.
That being said, go to Arc first (it has an elevator but is walkable if elevator isn't working) then cab to Eiffel and go to the top.
What could you do with the 260 in London? I'm leaning on a day trip in London and save Paris for a time when you have more flexibility to deal with the roadblocks mentioned above. Please do report back!
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 02:26 PM
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Five times to Paris for me and I have yet to get to the top of the Eiffel Tower. Since the buildings in Paris are not very high one does not need an exceptionally high vantage to see the city well. When we went to the Arc de Triomphe there was no line. The view was excellent, especially of the Eiffel Tower.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 02:48 PM
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Really good point about the eurostar slowdown. On Sept. 28 the trip was over three hours.

I would check on this beforehand as in our case it was 3 hours twenty minutes one way which will cut into your time in Paris.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 03:17 PM
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I'm going to go out on a limb and say no, it's not worth it.

Spending a rushed half-day in Paris is like allowing yourself one bite of something sweet and delicious while strictly dieting. Only a masochist would enjoy it.

If I were you, I'd focus on London at Christmas and start planning my third trip to Paris.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 03:27 PM
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It's not a rushed half-day.

You mean half of a 24-hour day? The last Eurostar in the evening (20h50) departs Paris eleven and a half hours after the first one arrives (9h17).

That's plenty of time to take a healthy bite of the City of Light - but you're sure to want more...someday.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 03:48 PM
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Thanks everyone for your input. Like I mentioned, we have been to Paris twice but I think it would be nice to get a birds eye view of the wonderful city. Who knows, this may be our last trip to Europe for a while. I will definitely have to look into the Montparnasse. I feel like the Arc and Eiffel are such great landmarks, it's a shame not to take full advantage of them. We would take the first train out of London putting us in Paris by 9am and we would likely leave around 5-6pm. A nice full day of walking around and eating many crepes!
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 05:35 PM
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The view from the Arc de Triomphe isn't all that spectacular compared to 690 feet up the Tour Montparnasse - check out these samples:

http://www.atkielski.com/Wallpapers/...&picheight=768

http://www.atkielski.com/Wallpapers/...&picheight=768

http://www.atkielski.com/Wallpapers/...&picheight=768
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 06:01 PM
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Skip both the arc and Eiffel tower; go up the tower of Notre Dame instead.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 06:10 PM
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As for whether it's worth the price, I'd gladly pay $130 right now just to stroll along the Seine for a day, but what you have to think about is whether it's worth taking a full day away from your other destination. Is this your first trip to London, and how many days will you have there? Don't underestimate the time it takes to see London.
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