The Eiffel Tower is one of the most iconic monuments in the world. Whether you have been to Paris or not, most likely you know it exists. However, you probably aren’t aware of all the Eiffel Tower facts and odd tidbits there are.
Located in Paris, France, the Eiffel Tower is also one of the most visited attractions in the world. The tower welcomes about 7 million visitors per year.
And, we want you to love it as much as we do, which is why we want to share some really cool and interesting Eiffel Tower facts.
Eiffel Tower Facts – Tidbits You Probably Didn’t Know
The Eiffel Tower is a great place to visit when you are in Paris, whether it is to spend a beautiful picnic day or taking a tour. But if you want to go inside and up the Tower, you will have to book a ticket in advance.
Gustave Eiffel is the notorious Eiffel Tower architect. He was also an engineer. The design and building of the Eiffel Tower was the highlight of his career.
The tower itself is made out of approximately 18,000 pieces and each one was prepared in Eiffel’s factory on the outskirts of Paris.
The wrought-iron metal structure is composed of four large arched legs and set on masonry piers that curve to the inside until they join in a single, tapered tower.
The construction of the tower took two years, two months and five days to be completed. It was finished on March 31, 1889.
The specific location of the Eiffel Tower is Champ de Mars, in Paris, France. It is a perfect location for locals and tourists to spend the day, even if they don’t go up the tower.
Now that we have covered some of the basics, let us move on to more detailed and less known facts about this magnificent metal structure.
Historic Eiffel Tower Facts
The Eiffel Tower was built as the main entrance and exhibit for the 1889 Exposition Universelle or the World’s Fair, to commemorate 100 years of the French Revolution.
The Tower was named after Eiffel, who lead the project and used his company for the construction of the building.
Although the Eiffel Tower is named after Gustave Eiffel, the design was actually made by two men that worked in his company, Maurice Koechlin and Emile Nouguier, who drew the original design.
It was originally meant to stand for only 20 years, but the potential experimental uses of the tower, particularly its antenna, saved it from being torn down.
The Eiffel Tower was the tallest man-made structure in the world for a total of 41 years, up until the Chrysler Building was finished in 1930, located in New York City.
When the Germans occupied Paris, the access to the tower was closed to the public. The Nazi soldiers tried to attach a swastika at the top, but it was so big that it got blown away and they replaced it with a smaller one.
During World War II, Hitler ordered the military governor of Paris to demolish the tower in 1944, along with other parts of the city. However, the general Dietrich von Choltitz refused.
The Eiffel Tower is 320 meters tall, which is 1,050 feet in height. It also weighs about 10,000 tons.
The Tower’s Design and Functions
When the Tower was completed, it received many criticisms from French people and foreigners as well. It was conceived as ugly and too bold for the time period.
There are several replicas of the Eiffel Tower around the world – in smaller, scaled sizes – like in Las Vegas, and one at the Window of the World theme park in China.
Gustave Eiffel specifically designed the Tower to have scientific uses to keep the tower standing. For example, installing a wireless telegraph transmitter.
Now, it houses over 120 antennas to broadcast both radio and television signals in the capital city and beyond.
You can actually climb to the top of the tower. If you are in fit condition, you can go up the 1,665 steps from the bottom to the top.
Or you can choose to take the two lifts available. The first travels from the ground to the middle and back while the second travels from the middle to the top and back to the middle.
The Tower has to be repainted every seven years to keep it curated against the natural oxidation the iron metal structure goes through every day.
Since it is made out of metal, as the climate changes, the structure changes in size by about 15 centimeters throughout the year.
The third floor of the Eiffel Tower has an apartment. Yes, you read that right, an apartment. Gustave Eiffel built it for himself. He spent a lot of time there conducting experiments.
The apartment went unnoticed for over one hundred years. However, today it is available for visitors to view and admire, although only from the outside.
Quirky Eiffel Tower Facts
The Eiffel Tower was “sold” twice, by the same man. Victor Lustig, a con artist, was able to convince, on two separate occasions, a few men to buy the tower.
The Eiffel Tower has been a place for some weird events. For instance, a man named Pierre Labric was arrested for riding a bicycle down from the first level of the Eiffel Tower. He later became the mayor of Montmartre.
Also, the Tower is actually “married.” A woman in 2007 wedded the tower and changed her name to Erika LaTour Eiffel. Yes, there are people who literally fall in love with inanimate objects.
It was also climbed and scaled by a mountaineer in 1954, and in 1984, two Englishmen parachuted off it.
The Eiffel Tower has three main restaurants: La Bulle Parisienne (a temporary restaurant on the first floor), Le Jules Verne (located on the second floor), and the 58 Tour Eiffel, which is closed for renovations until Autumn 2020.
Today, the Tower receives almost 7 million visitors every year, which makes it the most visited paid-for monument in the world so far.
After learning these fun and interesting Eiffe Tower facts, you can share that you know a thing or two about this iconic monument.