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Published: November 21st 2011
Friday, 21st October 2011
The Eiffel Tower should easily topped a visitor's must-visit itinerary in the city of Paris. Never mind that its steep admission and endless queues had made it an obvious tourist trap. Granted that there are other options in Paris to enjoy "free, breath-taking views" of the city.
After our idyllic breakfast at Hotel Du Nord, we made our way to the Basilique du Sacré-Cœur, a cathedral sitting on top of Montmartre Hill which offered fine views of the city. The climb to the summit wasn't too demanding given the clear October weather.
Our quintessential Parisian experience continued through the afternoon to the Louvre Museum as well as a long walk down Champ Elysees. This ultimately brought us straight to the gates of Arc De Triomphe where we paused for a break from the seemingly endless walking.
Coming out of the Trocadero Metro Station in the late afternoon, we were somewhat overwhelmed by the star attraction of the city. For over a hundred years, the mammoth Eiffel had wowed generations of visitors as it looms over much of western Paris skyline. Sure that it had received its fair share of criticisms as the Eiffel
design was considered too "contemporary" when it was unveiled for the first time during the Paris Exposition in 1899.
A visit to the Eiffel need not be an extravagant affair as we soon found out for ourselves. Steep admission fees aside, we realised that among other things, the self-cleaning public restroom facilities were available 24-7 free of charge (amid a 30-minute long wait). This was perfectly acceptable since our plan was to wait for the skies to turn dark while hoping to catch a glimpse of the tower lighting up in front of us.
Braving under the cold weather, the long wait was well worth the extra efforts as we rounded up our Paris campaign under the shimmering lights of Eiffel.
Au Revoir, the City of Lights.
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