The Eiffel Tower is one of the most recognizable and well-known constructions in the world, and France’s number one landmark. It is one of the reasons to visit Paris; it is where dozens, if not hundreds of people propose to their loved ones, each and every day. You might think you know quite a bit about the Eiffel Tower, which turned 125 in March, but you would be surprised at how many strange things are still unknown to the public. It was opened on March 31st 1889 and it’s still stunning and today, we’ve got 10 things you didn’t know about the Eiffel Tower, so read on and enjoy!
10. It was an Ad Billboard for a While
Did you know that in the late ’20s and ‘30s, the Eiffel Tower was used as a commercial billboard? As you can see in the above photo, it served as a billboard for Citroën automobiles. Since then, no other brand was advertised on the monument. All things aside, the advertisement is pretty hideous, isn’t it?
9. It Was Once Bright Yellow
Can you imagine the Eiffel Tower in any other color than brown? We really can’t, but you should try and imagine it bright yellow, because it once was painted yellow in the year of its opening, 1889. Also, from ’54 to ’61 it was painted the same color as the Golden Gate Bridge, a brownish red color. Pretty nice, right?
8. It was a 20-Year Project
One of the most interesting facts about the Eiffel Tower is the fact that it wasn’t supposed to last for as long as it has. Gustave Eiffel, the architect who designed and built it, built it to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the French Revolution. It lasting this long surprised quite a lot of folks.
7. It’s Married!
Yes, the Eiffel Tower, who was officially completed on March 31st, 1889, is officially married. Its bride is a woman named Erika La Tour Eiffel, a 36-year old woman from San Fransico. She used to be in the U.S. Army and is also a champion archer. Erika married the Tower in 2008 and by doing so she became an objectum sexual, a person attracted to objects. Before she fell in love with the Eiffel Tower, she was in love with Lance, a bow.
6. The French Didn’t Like It at First
One of the funniest things you didn’t know about the Eiffel Tower is the fact that the French originally disliked the structure a lot. To be honest, it is safe to say that they hated it. They even held petitions to take it down and protest against it during the construction. It was called monstrous and useless.
5. The Most Visited Monument
Right now, the Eiffel Tower is the most visited monument in the world. It welcomes around 7.5 million visitors each year. Did you know that the Empire State Building only draws around 4 million visitors a year? That’s pretty awesome, isn’t it?
4. It has a Light Show Every Evening
Every single night, the tower is covered in lights that will sparkle for five minutes straight, every hour. The tower lights up Paris and the view is spectacular. The very best spot to see the light show is the Place du Trocadéro, so if you’re visiting Paris, make sure to drop by in the evening, when it’s dark and see the wonderful golden lights.
3. It Shrinks
Everyone in the world seems to suffer from shrinkage! Even the great Eiffel Tower! It has been measured and it seems that the Tower is around five inches shorted in the winter than it is in the summer. It’s because metal expands in the heat and contracts in the cold. Science, man!
2. It Helped the French in the War
The Eiffel Tower played a vital role in World War I during 1914’s First Battle of the Marne. The very top of the tower served as a perfect spot for sending signals and directing the troops to the front line. A large, sturdy monument like that should really be put to good use and it seems it really did its part for the French people, don’t you agree?
1. It Housed a Printing Press
In 1889, the year it opened, the Eiffel tower had a printing press on its second floor. The famous French newspaper, Le Figaro, set up home there. Do you think such a thing could be possible these days?
Did you enjoy our things you didn’t know about the Eiffel Tower? Are there any other things about the Eiffel Tower you would like to share with us? Drop us a line in the comment section below, we’d love to hear about them!