Arc de Triomphe

Arc de Triomphe featuring street scenes, night scenes and a city

Arc de Triomphe

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An imposing monument at the center of a busy traffic intersection, the archway rises majestically above the city, with coveted city views.

While the vista from 164 feet (50 meters) above Paris will lure you to the top of the Arc de Triomphe, there’s much to see at the base of this landmark. It stands in the Place Charles de Gaulle where 12 straight avenues, including the Champs-Élysées, intersect and form “the star” of the city.

Although this is a busy intersection at the center of the city, you can easily reach the monument via car or sidewalk via the picturesque Champs-Élysées. There’s also enough pedestrian-only space around the arch to admire its architecture and decorative artwork from a safe distance.

There is an admission fee to reach the top of the arch via 284 steps or the elevator. Once there, you’ll find a museum, gift shop and views down the Champs-Élysées. The surrounding streets are particularly beautiful in the early evening when the city’s lights begin to sparkle.

It’s free to explore the base of the arch. Four massive pillars beneath an attic form a vaulted passageway so wide a pilot flew his plane through it in 1919. In 1920, the body of an unknown soldier was buried here and an eternal flame was added in 1923, in remembrance of those who died in World War I. The flame is rekindled in a daily ritual at 6:30 p.m.

The arch is a memorial to all those who fought for France, but particularly those in the Napoléonic wars. Its inner sides and top are engraved with the details of various wars and the 558 generals who fought in them. Each of its four pillars is decorated with a sculpture in relief. The most famous is Francois Rude’s The Departure of the Volunteers of 1792. It depicts everyday French people ready to defend their country, lead by the allegorical figure of Liberty. This work so encapsulated the patriotic zeal of the nation that it became known as La Marseillaise, after the national anthem.

Napoléon I commissioned the arch after his victory at Austerlitz in 1806. He promised his army they would “return home through arches of triumph”, but died before his grand tribute was completed in 1836.

The Arc de Triomphe is located in the 16th arrondissement on Paris’ Right Bank. It’s open daily, but one of the best days of the year to visit the arch is July 14th, Bastille Day. The Bastille Day parade follows the length of the Champs-Élysées and a huge flag billows from the arch’s crown creating a colorful photo op. This monument is easily accessible via bus, subway, railway or on foot. Driving is a bit trickier, as parking can be difficult to find.

Top Trending Hotels Near Arc de Triomphe

citizenM Paris Champs-Élysées
citizenM Paris Champs-Élysées
4 out of 5
128 Rue la Boétie, Paris, 75008
The price is £195 per night from 29 May to 30 May
Stay at this 4-star business-friendly hotel in Paris. Enjoy free WiFi, breakfast and a 24-hour front desk. Popular attractions Champs-Elysees and Arc de Triomphe ...
4.7/5 Exceptional! (91 reviews)
"10/10 - great hotel and a great stay!"

Reviewed on 14 May 2022

citizenM Paris Champs-Élysées
Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel
Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel
4 out of 5
18 avenue de Suffren, Entrée au 22 rue Jean Rey, Paris, Paris, 75015
The price is £352 per night from 12 Jun to 13 Jun
Stay at this 4-star business-friendly hotel in Paris. Enjoy free WiFi, breakfast and 24-hour room service. Our guests praise the helpful staff and the comfy ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (974 reviews)
"I did not like the fact that I had a 7 hour flight I requested a early check in and I was not granted so I had to pay for another room to take a nap until our original room was readying got in @7am and Check in wasn’t until 3pm"

Reviewed on 16 May 2022

Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel
Warwick Paris
Warwick Paris
4 out of 5
5 Rue De Berri, Paris, Paris, 75008
The price is £259 per night from 31 May to 1 Jun
Stay at this 4-star business-friendly hotel in Paris. Enjoy free WiFi, breakfast and 24-hour room service. Our guests praise the helpful staff and the quiet ...
4.1/5 Very Good! (733 reviews)
"Fantastic location, large and comfortable room, friendly staff."

Reviewed on 6 May 2022

Warwick Paris
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Princesse Caroline
Princesse Caroline
3 out of 5
1 Bis Rue Troyon, Paris, Paris, 75017
The price is £114 per night from 26 Jun to 27 Jun
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Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel
Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel
4 out of 5
18 avenue de Suffren, Entrée au 22 rue Jean Rey, Paris, Paris, 75015
The price is £352 per night from 12 Jun to 13 Jun
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citizenM Paris Champs-Élysées
citizenM Paris Champs-Élysées
4 out of 5
128 Rue la Boétie, Paris, 75008
The price is £195 per night from 29 May to 30 May
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Warwick Paris
Warwick Paris
4 out of 5
5 Rue De Berri, Paris, Paris, 75008
The price is £259 per night from 31 May to 1 Jun
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Renaissance Paris Arc de Triomphe Hotel
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5 out of 5
39 avenue de Wagram, Paris, Paris, 75017
The price is £425 per night from 30 May to 31 May
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Hôtel Plaza Etoile
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21 Avenue De Wagram, Paris, Paris, 75017
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Dadou Paris
Dadou Paris
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Pley Hotel
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Hotel Duquesne Eiffel
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23 Avenue Duquesne, Paris, Paris, 75007
The price is £168 per night from 24 Jun to 25 Jun
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Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.