Waiting Line at Eiffel Tower
This is a less conventional photograph of the Eiffel Tower. More specifically, it’s a photo of the line of people waiting to get into the tower at its base—something you don’t normally see in the tourist guides.
This picture was taken during high season, on a weekday. The line extends outside the frame of the photograph off to the right. An identical line existed for the western pillar. This represents about 40-50 minutes of waiting from the lower right portion of the photograph. It’s a lot like Disneyland Paris in that respect!
This photograph was taken at the base of the tower; the line waiting for admission is waiting in front of the Pilier Nord (the North Pillar). Admission rotates from pillar to pillar on different days; on busy days, more than one pillar may be open (on this day, two pillars were open). All pillars have elevators, although the elevator of the south pillar is reserved for the restaurant (the Jules Verne) on the second level of the tower. The pillars are aligned to the points of the compass, which is how they get their names.
The golden bust on the pedestal at the base of the Pilier Nord is a bust of Gustave Eiffel himself, the architect and builder of the tower. The trees in the distance off to the right are part of the two parks that exist on either side of the tower. They are very pretty and pleasant, but typically only residents frequent them heavily (although tourists sometimes rest in them in hot weather, as they were doing on this day). The Seine River is off to the left but is not visible in this photograph. You are looking northeast, at about 4:45 PM. The curved shadow over the waiting line in the foreground is the shadow of the northwestern arch of the tower itself. The grayish box above the yellow awnings of the entrance to the North Pillar is a digital display showing information about the tower, although it’s hard to read in this direct sunlight. There is one of these at the base of each pillar.
If you’d like to see the length of the line during the off season, click here.
See also my Eiffel Tower FAQ for more information on this landmark.
Click directly on the photo to see a smaller version (half this size). Photographed on July 16, 1999.
Eiffel Tower Alignment Display
View of the Ground from the First Platform
Additional Photographs of the Eiffel Tower