Eiffel Tower Light Show : History and practical information

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The Eiffel Tower brings magic to the City of Lights when the nights come. Discover the history of the Iron Lady's illuminations and find the answers to all the questions you have to make sure you enjoy the Eiffel Tower Light show.

All you need to know to enjoy the Eiffel Tower's illuminations

Does the Eiffel Tower light up every night?

Yes, it does!

What time does the Eiffel Tower light up?

You'll be able to see the well known Iron Lady lit up every day from sunset to 1AM. During summer, it turns of one hour later at 2AM.

When does the Iron Lady sparkle?

You can admire the golden Eiffel Tower light show during which it twinkles for 5 minutes every hour. The show takes place every evening.

Where is the best place to enjoy a view from the Eiffel Tower light show at night?

Head to the Trocadero, take a cruise on the Seine, climb the Montparnasse Tower. There are so many places to enjoy a view on the Eiffel Tower when the sun sets.

Here are some facts about the Eiffel Tower illuminations.

History of the Tower's illuminations

The beginnings of the Eiffel Tower's light shows

Throughout the monument’s history, the “Iron Lady” has been dressed up in lights that have become increasingly original, elaborate, and improved. The Tower’s metallic structure is continuously embellished by shimmering lights, fireworks, spot projectors - countless beams of light that render it sublime at night. Different stages of the Tower’s lights can be recounted starting from the 1889 Universal Exhibition.

The idea to light up the monument came to being as early as 1889. At the time this was achieved by placing gaslights inside opalescent glass globes to illuminate the Tower at night. A lighthouse that intermittently altered its intensity projected the colors of the French flag. During the 1900 Universal Exhibition, the light fixtures became entirely electric and were composed of 5,000 light bulbs placed at regular intervals on all the Tower’s facades.

Eiffel Tower lights during the 1900 Universal Exhibition

The Eiffel Tower's light shows in the 20's and 30's

In the 1920s and 30s, this tourist place in Paris was the effigy of the Citroen Group who, for celebrations on July 4, 1925, implemented a large-scale project that provided 250,000 multicolored lamps that lit up the brand-name Citroen on three different facades of the Tower, visible from a distance of 40 kilometers.

In 1933, a 15-meter wide clock tower with different colored minute and second hands that lit up was installed. The show ended in 1936 when costs were considered to be too high.

For the 1937 Arts and Techniques Exhibition, the Tower was decorated by André Granet with an enormous chandelier and 10 kilometers worth of multicolored fluorescent tubes. Thirty spotlights were used to illuminate the sky while the Tower’s facades glowed white and its edges shimmered in gold, red, and blue.

Eiffel Tower lights by Citroen, 1925

The Eiffel Tower's light shows in the 70's

Other events have been etched into the collective memory of Paris and the world when it comes to the Eiffel Tower and its lights.

For example, during Christmas 1978 the Tower was transformed into a huge, luminous Christmas tree.

The Eiffel Tower light show in the 2000's

The light show for New Year's Eve 2000

One of the most awaited events was the light show for the year 2000, a worldwide success: even in 1997, a neon counter was installed to countdown the days (D-1000) before the turn of the second millennia. At midnight on January 1, 2000, the Eiffel Tower shined and shimmered, unveiling a fiery waltz of pyrotechnic tricks. As for the lit-up counter, the year 2000 could be seen across the city. At the turn of the following year, 2001, the Tower celebrated the passage into the new millennia and shined blue.

Other light shows in the 2000's

In 2004, following the event “The France-China Cultural Crossover Years,” the Eiffel Tower was lit up in red to celebrate the Chinese New Year from January 24-29.

At midnight on May 8, 2006, the 20th edition of the Europe Festival once again provided the opportunity for the Eiffel Tower to be entirely lit up in blue.

In 2007, the Rugby World Cup was held in France and subsequently honored by the Tower. From the ground to the second floor, the “Iron Lady” was lit up in green lights to represent the stadium grass while a lit rugby goalpost was placed on the Tower along with a horizontal bar measuring 85 meters long, an enormous, 13-meter wide ball suspended from the 2nd floor and, last but not least, a huge, 120-meter wide flat screen to follow the match.

This tourist place has also become a symbol of political commitments to sustainable development and health issues for example. In 2007, the Tower lights were turned off to honor “A Five-Minute Break for the Planet,” and later, in 2014, the Tower was lit up entirely in pink to show Paris’s support for the fight against breast cancer.

The best way to discover the history of the Iron Lady and the different fun facts about the Eiffel Tower is to visit it! Get all the information about the Paris Eiffel Tower : ticket and tours prices on Paris City Vision.

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