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Eiffel Tower

September 20, 2014 –  Saturday – the Eiffel Tower, Paris, France

On my own after the Rick Steves Best of Europe in 21 Days tour

After breakfast, the Rick Steves tour is officially over. I say goodbye to the tour members in the lobby who are leaving today. I meet Jennifer’s boyfriend, who lives in the south of France. I end up spending most of the morning catching up with my journaling, sitting in the lobby just chilling out a bit. I chat with a few tour members who are staying in Paris for a few more days. Some are staying in other hotels, so they are moving this morning.

I skip lunch and walk over to Easy Pass Tours to pick up my prepaid, priority entrance ticket to the Eiffel Tower. It is great to walk past the lines of people waiting to buy tickets, breeze through a priority security line, and zoom up to the second floor in the main elevators. Following the Easy Pass instructions, I wait in line for the smaller elevators that take people to the top of the tower. This takes about 20 minutes, but finally I’m at the top, and have absolutely beautiful clear and sunny weather, so I take lots of photos, including a few selfies. I then descend back down to the second floor for a look around before returning to the ground level.

The priority ticket from Easy Pass Tours is well worthwhile in my estimation, since it saves so much time and aggravation. I walk back through the Champ de Mars – a beautiful park with the leaves falling from the trees. There is a Family Day celebration going on, so there are lots of people, kids and dogs around this afternoon.

I previously arranged to join some of the tour members for dinner this evening. We have reservations at Le Bosquet restaurant, which is recommended by the Rick Steves guide. Seven of us dine together, and by all accounts everyone is pleased with the food and service.

Today was most enjoyable, and I’m really appreciating the much slower pace from my days on the tour!

 
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First glimpse of the Eiffel Tower
First glimpse of the Eiffel Tower
Base of the Eiffel Tower
Base of the Eiffel Tower
Easy Pass Tours office
Easy Pass Tours office
Top of the Eiffel Tower
Top of the Eiffel Tower
Champ de Mars
Champ de Mars
The Seine River and Paris
The Seine River and Paris
Palais de Chaillot & Jardins du Trocadero
Palais de Chaillot & Jardins du Trocadero
People viewing the sights from the top deck
People viewing the sights from the top deck
Soccer field & Ile aux Cygnes in the middle of the Seine River
Soccer field & Ile aux Cygnes in the middle of the Seine River
Champagne Bar atop the Eiffel Tower
Champagne Bar atop the Eiffel Tower
Champ de Mars and Ile aux Cygnes in the middle of the Seine River
Champ de Mars and Ile aux Cygnes in the middle of the Seine River
180 degree view of the Seine River, Palais de Chaillot & Jardins du Trocadero
180 degree view of the Seine River, Palais de Chaillot & Jardins du Trocadero
Joe on the top deck of the Eiffel Tower
Joe on the top deck of the Eiffel Tower
Gustave Eiffel sitting in his suite atop his tower
Gustave Eiffel sitting in his suite atop his tower
The enclosed deck at the top
The enclosed deck at the top
The shadow of the tower, the Seine River and Paris
The shadow of the tower, the Seine River and Paris
Looking up to the top of the tower from the second level deck
Looking up to the top of the tower from the second level deck
Looking up to the top of the tower from the ground
Looking up to the top of the tower from the ground
Walkway along the Champ de Mars
Walkway along the Champ de Mars
Walkway along the Champ de Mars
Walkway along the Champ de Mars
The Eiffel Tower and Pont de la Concorde towers lit at night
The Eiffel Tower and Pont de la Concorde towers lit at night
The Eiffel Tower lit at night
The Eiffel Tower lit at night
The Eiffel Tower lit at night
The Eiffel Tower lit at night
The Eiffel Tower lit at night
The Eiffel Tower lit at night
Champ de Mars from the first floor of the tower
Champ de Mars from the first floor of the tower
Elevators to the ground on the second floor
Elevators to the ground on the second floor
Ascending the Eiffel Tower
Ascending the Eiffel Tower
Looking through the tower framework as the elevator descends from the top
Looking through the tower framework as the elevator descends from the top
Looking through the tower framework as the elevator descends from the top
Looking through the tower framework as the elevator descends from the top
Looking through the tower framework as the elevator descends from the top
Looking through the tower framework as the elevator descends from the top
Elevator mechanicals
Elevator mechanicals
Tower footing
Tower footing
Looking up to the top of the tower from the ground
Looking up to the top of the tower from the ground
Looking up underneath the Eiffel Tower
Looking up underneath the Eiffel Tower
The whole Eiffel Tower viewed through a fisheye lens from underneath
The whole Eiffel Tower viewed through a fisheye lens from underneath