Awaken To The Arc De Triomph

Bonjour mes amis,

Enlighten your senses and GO UPWARDS at the Arc De Triomph at Place Charles De Gaulle. Most tourists stay on the bottom in the shadow of the Arc and look at the grandeur of this fabulous icon from a worms eye view.

From here you’ll be able to read many of the French victories of past wars like the Revolution and especially the Napoleonic Wars. The Tomb of  The Unknown Soldier, unveiled on Armistice Day 1920, can also be viewed at the base of the Arc and at 6:30 every evening a torch flame, surrounded by wreaths adorned with the patriotic colours of red, white and blue,  is rekindled to commemorate the loss of lives during World War I.

You will notice at this level the beautifully powerful, ornate carvings and architectural elements in stone. Also, the names of  over five hundred Generals from the wars are engraved on the inside of the Arc. (Not that the jubilant Charles Godefroy would have noticed as he flew oh so carefully through the Arc at the end of World War I many moons ago).

Although this level is OK for some tourists and it IS informative and often moving, my french awakening grew even wider when I reached the top of the three hundred and seventy two steps (and almost fifty metres later) for an amazing panoramic view of Paris.  It’s well worth the effort my friends! COME ON UP and I’ll show you what you’re  missing!

And if you’re nervous about getting up there- stand at the top for Napoleon if no one else. Napoleon- a surprisingly small man in stature ( although fiesty!) could have done with the added elevation and let’s not forget that it was he who commisioned the Arc’s construction in 1806 in the first place but never actually got to see it finished nor stand up there where we can and look down at his Paris.

In this devine panorama, you can see the Champs Elysee, Eiffel Tower, Sacre Coeur, Tour Montparnasse, The Tuilleries Garden, La Defense, The Louvre and so much more!

The Arc de Triomph took twenty years to build and is definately a Parisian icon, so make certain it goes on your ‘Sights To See And Do List’ on your next trip.

Don’t forget to be adventuous as it’s another world up here mes amis and taking the stairs (or elevator) up the Arc de Triomph is not to be missed next time you’re in Paris.

Like the “Winged Victory” in Francois Rude’s, ‘La Marseillaise’ sculpture (carved in thirteen metres of the Arc’s stone),  you can boast your own victory and give glory to France!

Au Revoir,

Best Wishes, Therese Waddell

P.S  Subscribe to my blogs if you find them useful on the top right corner! Merci!

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