669 Steps to Heaven – Walking the Eiffel Tower

It is only when you are standing under the Eiffel Tower that you truly understand the sheer magnitude of it.

I decided that walking the tower steps would be a worthwhile experience. After all, not many people can say that they walked the Eiffel Tower. I only saw six people braving the steps before I purchased my ticket, but I just assumed there were several more people out of sight. It turned out that walking the tower wasn’t as popular as you’d think.

It only costs 4 € to walk to the second floor of the Eiffel Tower and another 4 € to go to the top.

I stood in line for 5 minutes before paying for the challenge ahead. 

Maybe this isn’t the best idea. I wonder how many flights it is? I wonder how many steps it is? 

There are 328 steps to the first floor of the Eiffel Tower. I know this because I counted every one of them. When I reached the first viewing platform, lots of things ran through my mind. You would think my first thought would have been, “Wow! This is beautiful,” but it wasn’t.

I’m just going to take the elevator back down. This was stupid! Why would I think I could do this? I wonder if anyone has ever had a heart attack on the platform of the Eiffel Tower? 

As I sat on the first seat that I could find, and regulated my breathing, I watched a child come up the stairs and run to the edge for the view. I wished I still had that kind of energy and enthusiasm.

It may have taken extra time to appreciate the surroundings, but when I finally stood at the rail and looked around, I was stunned at the beauty and culture that filled every inch of the panoramic view. The Eiffel Tower is the most famous symbol of Paris and I was standing at the heart of it.

After another 341 steps, the last step before the second floor is labeled 669, I reached the second platform. I had to stop two times and I thought about going back, but I made it. It was rather windy and cool, but I had accomplished something. Sure, I could have taken the elevator and enjoyed the ride, but for the rest of my life, I could tell people that I walked as high as a person can walk on the Eiffel Tower.  I had a bird’s eye view of Paris and it was exhilarating.

No trip to Paris would be complete without seeing it from the top. From ancient ruins to distant pasts, it can all be experienced from the Eiffel Tower. It was only during the second set of stairs that it sunk in that I was in Paris and I certainly had time to reflect during the 669 steps down to the base of it.

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73 thoughts on “669 Steps to Heaven – Walking the Eiffel Tower

  1. I somehow braved the stairs too with my family because the day we decided to visit the Tour Eiffel the elevator line was too long! We stopped at the first floor- it must have been walking the stairs with a two year old, an umbrella stroller, and a diaper bag that stopped me… Or at least that’s what I say! Congratulations on this accomplishment. Next time I’m going to the second floor!

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  2. Well narrated! While coming down we came down via stairs from 2nd floor. Now the way in which you have described make me wonder, why I didn’t thought it in this way.
    Regards,
    Abhi

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  3. Thanks for liking my poem about Sweden’s archipelago. SO glad I linked into this piece. Photos, especially of the Tower itself, are exquisite! Having directed a Global MBA for the last 7 years of my career (read About on my blog), I’ve seen so many incredible places. Travel and seeing with the “open” eye and mind are truly life changing. I am very new to this blogging world and to poetry – and loving the immersion! You’ve sparked a wonderful idea – I shall look back at my photos and journals as a muse. Hope you’ll follow my journey! Will explore your blog more a little later this morning. Again, thanks so much for Liking since it introduced me to you and this wonderful piece!

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  4. Thanks for the memories! Your first sentence got me, because it wasn’t until we stood under the Eiffel Tower that I truly understood the magnitude of it, too. I cheated and took the elevator, but had the same reaction when I stood on the second platform – the views! The beauty of Paris! It’s tremendous, isn’t it??

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  5. We managed the first level – I was racing on ahead of my husband – I called out to him and a man passing me said “you are too fast for him” – so I looked back and saw him clinging to the inner stair rail – strangely he had an attack of vertigo which had never happened before (first of all I thought he was having a heart attack!). I offered to turn back but he said he would be fine if he stayed on the inside of the stairs. When he made it to the first level he was fine… but I dare not go to the second – next visit I it will do it by myself . It was still a magic view from the first level and well worth the effort.

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  6. Thanks for bringing Paris back to life for me. Such sweet memories from last August.(our Silver Wedding anniversary 🙂 ) We didn’t climb up (it was cool and grey not to mention damp as we stood down there, gazing up) but so many of my photos have it looking right back at me.

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  7. Wow! I’m impressed. That was quite a feat. I walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty and as hard as it was, coming back down was worse. I love Paris and I love the Eiffel Tower view.

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  8. Oh my gosh, that makes me feel so tired just thinking about all those steps…. 😛
    I never would have been able to do that! That is amazing that you actually climbed that many stairs.
    Beautiful pictures! 😀
    *Sunny

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  9. Woohoo! Congrats! This is kind of how I felt climbing the tower of Notre Dame. WHY did I do this again!?!? I definitely hope to climb the Eiffel Tower one day…you know, when I have quads of steel (HA). Totally worth it, though!

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