Eiffel Tower Walking Tour (Self Guided), Paris

The 7th arrondissement of Paris is the most affluent and prestigious residential area in France, home to world-famous Eiffel Tower and the French upper class alongside a number of French national institutions, government offices and diplomatic missions. This historical neighborhood boasts typically Parisian architecture complete with vibrant cafés, restaurants and gourmet shops which draw foodies in their numbers.

Among the attractions on this self-guided walk you will visit the Eiffel Tower and adjacent Champ de Mars park, Les Invalides (Napoléon's resting place – today a museum and national monument), the Rodin Museum and its immense sculpture garden, with one of the most popular market streets in Paris – Rue Cler – as your last stop.

In between these, the Musée du Quai contains fascinating indigenous art from 19th- and 20th-century non-Western cultures (including Oceania, Indonesia, Australia and Africa, among others), while the marvelously old-fashioned Maison Chaudin offers a wide range of sculpted and molded chocolate along with awesome ‘bonbons’.

Finally, if you love a good bridge, Pont Alexandre III is one of the most wonderfully ornate ones you’ll ever see, and provides amazing views from every angle!

With so much to see and do, follow this self-guided walking tour to make the most of the experience!
How it works: Download the app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play to your mobile phone or tablet. The app turns your mobile device into a personal tour guide and its built-in GPS navigation functions guide you from one tour stop to next. The app works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Eiffel Tower Walking Tour Map

Guide Name: Eiffel Tower Walking Tour
Guide Location: France » Paris (See other walking tours in Paris)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 8
Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.6 Km or 2.9 Miles
Author: karen
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Eiffel Tower (Tour Eiffel)
  • Champ de Mars (Field of Mars)
  • Musee du Quai Branly (Quai Branly Museum)
  • Maison Chaudun
  • Alexandre III Bridge
  • Rodin Museum
  • Les Invalides
  • Rue Cler (Market Street)
1
Eiffel Tower (Tour Eiffel)

1) Eiffel Tower (Tour Eiffel) (must see)

Equally grand from whatever angle you look at it, whether just walking past or watching it from a distance, day or night, the Eiffel Tower lives up to its iconic status with ease. No wonder it is the no. 1 attraction everyone wants to see on their trip to Paris. In fact, it has become so much a symbol of Paris and France, that it is hard to imagine the time when it did not exist.

Completed by French architect Gustave Eiffel in 1889, right from the outset, the tower was an enormous success, although not to everyone's taste. Before the construction even started, a group of prominent French artists and members of academia disparaged the idea as utterly useless and even monstrous. Despite that, in 2015 the tower proved to be the most visited paid landmark in the world, seeing that year alone almost 7 million visitors.

There are several reasons the tower is so popular. For starters, the entire wrought-iron structure is totally see-through, so you can literally see all of it from one end to the other. Secondly, unlike some other high-rises, the tower is there for visitors only and nothing else. And finally, in Paris where tall buildings are still in rather short supply, the bird's eye view opening from the top of the tower is truly unique and indeed breathtaking. Standing up there, you won't have difficulty spotting all of Paris's top attractions such as the Louvre, the Grand Palace, Montmartre, or the Arch of Triumph.

Moreover, the complete Eiffel experience is not limited to just climbing the tower itself, but may also include a picnic nearby or visiting the Field of Mars not far away. The abundance of benches, grassy lawn and vendors in the vicinity, selling all sorts of snacks, drinks and ice cream, make it a totally comfortable experience. Also adding to the charm is the near presence of the river Seine rolling its waters quietly and majestically.

Tip:
Remember to bring along some warm clothes, because it can get much colder at the top, especially when it's windy.
During the day, if it is hot, bring an umbrella to offer you some shade, and lots of water.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 9:30am-11:45pm (Sep-Jun 14); 9am-12:45am (Jun 14-Aug 31)
Last entry: 45mins before closing time
2
Champ de Mars (Field of Mars)

2) Champ de Mars (Field of Mars)

In sunny weather, there is nothing better in Paris than stretching out somewhere on a grassy lawn. The “Field of Mars”, one of the largest parks in Paris, generously offers such an opportunity to those lucky with plenty of time under their belt. This popular outdoor space takes its name from the ancient Campus Martius in Rome, once the drilling ground for the Roman armies preparing for war. Back in the day, the French used this field pretty much for the same purpose as well, although prior to that, in the 16th century, this was just a vegetable plantation.

Nowadays, Champ de Mars is a popular venue for celebrations, cultural events and military parades. The live music concerts here, especially in summer, held under the starry Paris sky, give listeners a truly unforgettable experience.

Most of the time, though, the park is just a charming green oasis amid the sprawling metropolis, offering, among other delights, some of the greatest views of the nearby Eiffel Tower, especially at night when its illumination goes on every hour.

A favorite spot for many, just as any other major public park, Champ de Mars may get rather busy on sunny days. This, however, doesn't seriously reduce chances of finding some quiet nook further afield. Those coming with kids will find comfort here, too, in the form of at least two playgrounds available at their disposal.

Why You Should Visit:
Best place to get photos of the Eiffel Tower and to see it sparkle every hour in the evenings.

Tip:
Consider bringing a mat/cover for lying about.
3
Musee du Quai Branly (Quai Branly Museum)

3) Musee du Quai Branly (Quai Branly Museum)

The Musee du Quai Branly features indigenous art from the Americas, Oceania, Africa, and Asia. The Musee du Quai Branly opened in 2006 and is Paris's newest major museum. This impressive collection boasts more than a million objects. President Jacques Chirac spearheaded the drive to create this fabulous museum.

The Musee du Quai Branly has four buildings, a theatre, and a massive garden.

Upon entering the main building, visitors will be greeted by an enormous Moai ancestor carving from Easter Island. Indigenous art on display includes masks, tapestries, and textiles from Africa. The Asian collection features the back of a seat of honor from Sumatra. Visitors will also find figurines and masks from India and textiles from China.

In the Americas collection, admire Mayan artifacts from AD 600, Aztec sculptures, and Canadian totem poles. The Oceania collection features figurines from Papua New Guinea, masks from Vanuatu, and Māori sculptures from New Zealand.

The garden features small gardens, sweet streams, gently rolling hills, sparkling pools, and charming groves. The garden is protected from street noise by a high wall of plate glass. The remarkable green wall covers over 800 square meters of the exterior wall as living plants take over the wall.

The Musee du Quai Branly is the fourth largest museum in Paris. Its modern design, one-of-a-kind exhibits, and natural gardens create a unique experience.

Operation hours: Tuesday - Wednesday, Sunday: 11:00 am - 7:00 pm; Thursday - Saturday: 11:00 am - 9:00 pm
4
Maison Chaudun

4) Maison Chaudun

If you're mad about chocolate or love to see the artistry in sweets, you'll want to move into Maison Chaudun. Delight in The Pave, a gorgeous chocolate creation that's so much more than just a truffle. Michel Chaudun first produced the fabulous chocolate with cocoa nibs in 1993, and this divine invention has been delighting customers ever since.

For a burst of tangy sunshine, try their candied fruits. Maison Chaudun's cakes and pastries and sure to captivate your taste buds and your heart.

Visitors can admire or purchase fabulous statues and even handbags made out of chocolate. You might be tempted to buy a box of chocolate as a gift for a loved one or a treat for later, but we doubt these heavenly treats will make it home.

Opening Hours:
Mon-Sat: 10am-7pm; Sun: 10am-5pm
5
Alexandre III Bridge

5) Alexandre III Bridge (must see)

While Paris abounds in beautiful bridges, the bridge of Alexandre III beats them all hands down. This deck arch bridge, spanning the river Seine between the Champs-Élysées and Les Invalides quarter, is widely regarded to be the most ornate and extravagant bridge in the French capital, a truly historic attraction in its own right!

It was built at the end of the 19th century, in time for the 1900 World Exhibition in Paris, under the supervision of Russian Tsar Alexander III upon the conclusion of the Franco-Russian Alliance. The bridge proved to be a genuine feat of engineering of the time, not only because of its single arch but also because it needed to sit low, so as not to obstruct the view from the Les Invalides over to the Champs-Élysées Avenue. The design and construction of the bridge was done by numerous artists who added just as many intricate elements to its ornamentation, including the lovely bas-relief ironwork, gilded and ornate street lamps, as well as four golden statues representing the Art, the Commerce, the Industry and the Science. The lower part of the bridge – the piers and the groynes supporting it – are just as impressive, especially for those who sail underneath it.

Why You Should Visit:
Just about every bridge in Paris is beautiful but this one probably tops them all – a museum by itself!

Tip:
If you happen to be at the bridge at night, make sure to walk down the stairs and check out its underbelly for some truly amazing photos.
Also, look out for a small antiques market down there, along the riverfront, for some vintage fashion, excellent silver flatware, and knick-knacks of various sort.
6
Rodin Museum

6) Rodin Museum (must see)

The Musée Rodin in Paris, displaying the works of French sculptor Auguste Rodin, for over 100 years has been housed in Hôtel Biron. This elegant 18th-century mansion was Rodin's residence, and its garden was particularly dear to the sculptor, who placed here many of his works.

Renowned for his unique ability to mold clay, Rodin went down in history not only as a sculptor but also as a painter, engraver and collector. Attesting to this are the numerous sketches, paintings and engravings displayed in the museum, created by both Rodin himself and his student and muse, Camille Claudel. Also exhibited here are the paintings of Van Gough, Monet and Renoir collected by Rodin during his lifetime.

On the outside, the property spans over three hectares and includes a rose-tinged French garden adorned with sinuous bronze sculptures, such as “The Walking Man”, “The Cathedral”, “The Kiss”, and the most famous of them all – “The Thinker”.

The entrance fee is reasonable, not likely to break anyone's bank, so go and appreciate art in a whole new perspective while enjoying the Parisian weather.

Why You Should Visit:
The overall setting is quite pleasant for art study much as for the laid-back meditative contemplation whereby one can forget about time and unwind for a while.
Just behind the museum, there's a small pond and casual restaurant, plus an open area with benches, café and ice-cream parlor.

Tip:
Do stop in the entry garden to pose for cheesy photos of yourself looking pensive next to the massive statue of The Thinker!

Regular Hours:
Wed-Mon: 10am-5pm
Closed Tuesdays, 4th of July, Thanksgiving & Christmas

Garden Bar Hours:
Thu–Sun: 3–8pm (Jul 5–Aug 25); Sat, Sun: 3–8pm (Sep 8–29);
Closed July 25, Aug 31–Sept 2, Sep 7
7
Les Invalides

7) Les Invalides

Les Invalides is a spacious block of buildings in Paris comprising museums and monuments showcasing the military glory of France. It also played a significant role in the French Revolution. On 14 July 1789, prior to attacking the Bastille fortress, a mob broke into Les Invalides and seized 32,000 rifles, which proved crucial in starting the fight.

Originally designed as a hospital and retirement home for the aged and sick war veterans, the complex had 15 courtyards, with the largest one reserved for military parades. Completed in the 17th century, the hospital once housed up to 4,000 veterans at a time. Some of France's greatest generals and war heroes, including Napoleon Bonaparte himself, are buried here.

The tomb of Napoleon in the Royal Chapel is a standalone attraction and is a typically French interpretation of Baroque, with a huge dome, inspired by St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. The inner part of the dome is a sample of the French mastery in decorative arts, working on which was the army of painters and craftsmen. The sheer size of the dome, and that of the sarcophagus beneath it, vividly demonstrate the importance of Napoleon to the French people. If you come late, toward the closing hours, you may have a bit more space to walk around and explore this place on your own.

Inside the Museum, you will see the history of French might, arranged in a great series of halls and rooms and galleries stretching from the Middle Ages to more recent times. Renaissance armour for the horses as well as the men is a speciality as well as their helmets and spears and halberds and cross-bows. The campaigns of Louis XIV as he strove to rule the whole of Europe is recorded in maps and manuscripts and period drawings. Climactically, the period of the French Revolution is represented most dramatically and in detail with flags and standards, cockade hats and the Guillotine.

The Napoleonic wars are also represented by cannon taken from the battle fields and all the military might that Napoleon was able to muster before his defeat at Waterloo by the Duke of Wellington and ignominious fall from power into exile. The age of photography enables us to see how devastating was the German attack on Paris in 1871 where newly built boulevards and their buildings stood in war ruins. And WWI/WWII are also evoked through photographs and contemporary film which record man's inhumanity to man.

Why You Should Visit:
From Napoleon's campaigns to the world wars, it is all there for you to see. The exhibits cover not just the military aspects of the wars, but also their economic, social and political aspects, their causes and the aftermath. Then, to top it all off, there is the tomb of Napoleon.

Tip:
The available on-site Angelina patisserie offers visitors a fairly good selection of teas and cakes, ideal for a quick snack and a nice break whenever one might need it.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 10am-6pm (Apr-Oct); 10am-5pm (Nov-Mar)
Last entry: 30 mins before closing time
8
Rue Cler (Market Street)

8) Rue Cler (Market Street)

Rue Cler is the most celebrated market street in Paris. Nothing brings people together like the promise of good food. Rue Cler is the most popular place to shop for everything you need for your evening meal. From bakeries, pastry shops, delis, cheese shops, wine sellers to fresh flowers for the table, you'll have a hard time choosing the perfect picnic items.

The French often shop daily for their meals instead of heading to the grocery store. Parisian apartments have small refrigerators, and Parisians seek only the freshest produce and meats, which they'll eat the same day.

Join with locals and find the absolute best in cheese, meat, fish, produce, and chocolate. Be sure to buy a fresh baguette, freshly sliced deli meat, and excellent cheese. Save the wine shop for last so you can pair the wine with your chosen meal.

Find out why most visitors have called Rue Cler their favorite street in Paris.

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