Eiffel Tower: 5 things you didn't know
The symbol of Paris, for many also a symbol of France. La Tour Eiffel was built in 1889 for the Exposition Universelle, a world’s fair to celebrate the anniversary of the French Revolution. It has become a global cultural and architectural icon and one of the most recognizable structures in the world. With approximately 7 million people visiting the Tower each year, it is the most visited monument with an entrance fee in the world! Eiffel Tower is 1,083 feet tall and its base measures 410 feet on each side. Top level’s visitors platform is 906 feet above the ground. You can choose between taking a lift or walking up the 600 steps climb. These are some basic facts, now let’s find out about the things that you surely did not know about the Tower:
1. Gustav Eiffel didn’t design the tower. Although everyone knows the name Eiffel, it wasn’t Mr. Eiffel himself who drew the original design of the Tower, it was actually two engineers who worked for his company: Maurice Koechlin and Émile Nouguier.
The Tower was originally meant to be torn down after 20 years. As the Tower was built with the intent to show off French
industrial prowess during the World’s Fair, the plan was to tear it down twenty years later. But since the Eiffel company had cleverly put a
wireless telegraph transmitter and a radio antenna into the Tower, French government had eventually made a decision to keep the tower as it
was too useful to be demolished.
3. Adolf Hitler ordered the tower to be destroyed. During the German occupation of France throughout the World War II,
Hitler wanted the Eiffel Tower to be torn down. The order was, fortunately, never followed through. In order to complicate things for
Germans, French resistance fighters cut down the Tower’s elevator cables so that the Nazis were forced to climb the stairs in order to hang
their flag on it.
4. There’s a military bunker under the Eiffel Tower. Underneath the Tower’s South pillar is hidden a secret military bunker thatpossibly connects to the nearby Ecole Militaire through a long underground tunnel. Nowadays, the bunker serves as a museum.
5. There’s a Champagne bar at the top. If you're brave enough to reach the top of the Tower, reward yourself with a glass of champagne from the Champagne Bar built into the top floor. There's nothing like a glass of bubbly with a spectacular view!
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