At the far end of Champs Elysées, you can't help but notice the towering arch soaring over the traffic at Place Charles de Gaulle. The Arc de Triomphe, dominating the horizon was commissioned by Napolean as a homage to the army of France. There are over 660 names of generals and members of the army engraved on the insides of the arch. Visiting this historic symbol of Parisian pomp and military triumph must definitely make the cut to your Paris itinerary. But before you go, here's all you need to know about the Arc de Triomphe, its history, architecture, skip the line Arc De Triomphe tickets, a few quick interesting facts and more!
What is the Arc de Triomphe?
Located on Place de l’Etoile, overlooking the Champs-Elysées the Arc de Triomphe Paris, built between 1806 and 1836 is the biggest arch in the world. Napoleon commissioned the building of this arch to commemorate the Parisians victory at Austerlitz. It stands today as a silent reminder of the less glorious parts of war with the Tomb of the Unkown Soldier placed beneath the arch. Every evening at 6:30 PM , an eternal flame is rekindled by war veterans. One can go all the way atop the Arc de Triomphe ( a climb of 280 steps) and be rewarded with panaromic views of bustling Paris. Within the structure, there is a museum retracing the history of Arc De Triomphe Paris which is well worth a visit too.
Arc de Triomphe History
The iconic triumphal Arc de Triomphe is a well known monument in Paris. Located in the heart of the city, the stunning structure denotes Napoleon I’s first victory in the Battle of Austerlitz in 1805. His ambition to make Paris the most beautiful city in the world brought him to plan the construction of the Arc, which was initially supposed to be a column dedicated to the glory of the Grand Army. It took two years just to lay the foundations, however, the construction was completed only on May 12, 1836 after several unexpected halts in its process. As of today, the Arc de Triomphe continues to serve as an symbol of valiance to France as well as to the rest of the world.
Arc de Triomphe Architecture
Designed by Jean-Francois-Therese Chalgrin, the arc is 164 ft high and 148 meters wide. It is located in a circular plaza known as Place de l’étoile (star), because of 12 grand avenues leading towards the arc. Chalgrin incorporated Neoclassical elements to the arc, taking inspiration from the Arch of Titus in the Roman Forum.
The surfaces of the walls are engraved with the names of hundreds of generals and battles. A stairway of 284 steps leads up to the top of the monument where an observation deck is located. A level below is a museum with interactive exhibits narrating the poignant stories of the arc’s history. Beneath the arc, The Tomb of an Unknown Soldier lies along with a flame of remembrance, which is lit every evening.
Arc De Triomphe Tickets
The Arc De Triomphe tickets are very nominally priced at 12 Euros. Moreover, these are skip the line e-tickets which means, purchasing them online provide you the added advantage of whizzing past queues. While you can view the Arc de Triomphe in all its glory from Place de l’étoile , to reach atop this magnificient structure, you need to purchase tickets.
Skip The Line: Arc de Triomphe Tickets
• Skip the line access to the top of Arc De Triomphe Paris
• Bask in the glory of Parisian history while you view 50 m high panaromic views of the city
Arc de Triomphe View
The Arc de Triomphe is located on one of the most busiest roundabouts of Paris, giving you a stellar panoramic view of the cityscape surrounding it. The observation deck located on top of the arc provides tourists a platform to take pictures and admire the view. While metal spikes guard the observatory deck, you can still manage to click a picture of the unobstructed view. At each end of the deck, there is a map present that indicates various monuments in that direction. The top of Arc de Triomphe boasts of one of the best views of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
Arc De Triomphe Paris - Visitor Information
Arc De Triomphe Hours
Saturday to Sunday — 10:00 AM to 10:30 PM
Getting to Arc de Triomphe
The nearest metro station to the Arc is Charles de Gaulle–Étoile from where you can walk your way to the monument. This metro station can be reached via Lines 1,2 and 6 or the RER Line A. Remember to not cross your way to the Arc, an underground walkway from the Avenue Champs-Elysées or Grande Armée is available to lead you to the designated entrance of Arc de Triomphe.
Tips for Visiting Arc De Triomphe Paris
- The admission to the Arc de Triomphe is free of charge for European Citizens under the age of 25 and also on certain days in a year, be sure to check their website before you visit.
- The Arc De Triomphe Rooftop Ticket remains free for those who have purchased the Paris Pass.
- Do not run across the road, make sure you take the underground passage to arrive safely at the arch.
- The ticket window which is located below the Arch tends to get crowded during the day, it is best to book your tickets online.
- While there is an elevator access, the climb to the top will acquaint you to several artefacts and history about the Arch.
- Catch the spectacular Eiffel Tower sparkling in the evening from on top of the observatory.
Arc De Triomphe Facts
- The Arc de Triomphe is the second-largest triumphal arch standing today and was the largest until 1982.
- Before it was built, the space was almost dedicated to a three-level high elephant-shaped building.
- The Napoleon I proposed a wooden arch for his second marriage with Marie Louise of Austria. The two of them walked through the arch when they entered Paris as a married couple.
- The Napoleon I never had a chance to see the Arch as the project completed 15 years after his death, however his body was later moved to its final resting place — under the arch — in 1850.
- Admission to the auditorium may be restricted or forbidden at times for technical or artistic reasons. If you want guaranteed access to the auditorium, opting for the first tour in the morning is suggested. That way, you can avoid any potential rehearsal conflicts.
- In 1919, Charles Godefroy, a French Aviator, made news by flying a Nieuport fighter plane through the arch to salute all the airman killed in the war.
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