Why you should skip the 3rd floor summit of the Eiffel Tower


If you are visiting the Eiffel Tower, you will want to see all of it! But really, the 3rd floor summit isn’t worth the money or the wait and here is why.

First, it costs extra. You can buy a lift ticket online to include the summit but it does cost an extra 6 Euros (accurate at time of posting). If you decide to take the stairs or buy a lift ticket to the 2nd floor, there is a dedicated ticket booth on the 2nd floor to buy summit tickets but you’ll have to wait in line that will circle around the 2nd floor. Then wait in line again for the elevator (see point 2). You can not take the stairs to the summit.

Second, you have to wait in line again. There is no fast-pass options for this even if you bought your ticket online to include a lift to the summit. This line for the lift will be really long. At best, it will take at least an hour to buy your tickets and wait in line for the lift to the summit.

Third, it will be really, really crowded. While the 1st and 2nd floors are rather large and people can somewhat spread out, the 3rd floor is really, really small and thus super crowded. Think wall to wall bodies. This makes it extremely difficult to see anything of interest on the floor. You sort of get caught up in the movement of the crowd not to mention the extra opportunity this brings for pick-pocketers.

Here is what is on the 3rd floor/summit and my experience:

  • Gustave Eiffel’s office: Situated behind glass is a replica of Monsieur Eiffel’s office. This is the only thing I was actually able to see and capture a picture of. It is pretty amazing that he had his office on the top floor. A small little place he used to get away from it all.

Gustave Eiffel’s Office

  • Panoramic maps: There were so many people, I could hardly get near the edge to even see the landscape let alone view the panoramic maps.
  • Scaled down model of the original 1889 Eiffel Tower: Too crowded to view it. But, while I was waiting in line to take the elevator back down to the 2nd floor, I was able to view these blueprints.

Eiffel Tower blueprints

  • Wall height gauge to measure your exact altitude: I love this sort of stuff but with the movement of the crowd, it was simply impossible to stop and get a picture.
  • Champagne bar: I love champagne and was looking forward to sipping a glass on the Eiffel Tower. How French! I was most disappointed by this. It was just a little window with no place to stand. I don’t know how you would even enjoy the champagne.

In my opinion, the “juice isn’t worth the squeeze” to go to the summit. I find the views of Paris much better from the 1st and 2nd floors and the exhibits on these floors much easier navigate and enjoy.

Bises (kisses),



This post is part of the weekly #MondayEscapes hosted by My Travel Monkey and Packing My Suitcase.

Also part of the monthly #AllAboutFrance hosted by Phoebe of Lou Messugo.

8 thoughts on “Why you should skip the 3rd floor summit of the Eiffel Tower

  1. Pingback: 5 things not to miss when visiting the Eiffel Tower - The Paris Itinerary

    • I am going to write about Montparnasse Tower later this year. You are correct, very little queuing and no crowds.

  2. I have to say, the Eiffel Tower is not my favorite view of Paris – mainly because the view doesn’t include one of Paris’ highlights of the skyline, the tower itself! With that said, I do enjoy the view from the very top. I agree with you though – it gets super crowded, so I would avoid the Tower altogether at peak times. I went on an evening in November last year and practically had the top floor to myself (though I have done it in the summer when it was quite crowded too).

    • Oh to have the top floor all to yourself! That is like being at Versailles in the Hall of Mirrors all by yourself…a bit like seeing a unicorn. How nice!

  3. I get your point about skipping the third floor, but I think I would regret not going all the way to the top. To me it was worth the money and time we spent waiting to get up. Perhaps I would think differently if we would have to wait much longer than app. 15 minutes (as much we had to wait).

    • A 15 minute wait is fantastic! I have gone both peak season and off peak season and both times, the wait was an hour for tickets and an hour for the elevator.

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