Arc de Triomphe de l’Étoile, Paris

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Arc de Triomphe

Arc de Triomphe de l’Étoile (map) is one of the most famous monuments in Paris, standing at the western end of the Champs-Élysées at the centre of Place Charles de Gaulle.

The Arc de Triomphe honours those who fought and died for France in the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, with the names of all French victories and generals inscribed on its inner and outer surfaces.

As the central cohesive element of the Axe historique (historic axis, a sequence of monuments and grand thoroughfares on a route running from the courtyard of the Louvre to the Grande Arche de la Défense), the Arc de Triomphe was designed by Jean Chalgrin in 1806.

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Paris’s Arc de Triomphe was the tallest triumphal arch (50 metres / 164 ft) until the completion of the *Monumento a la Revolución in Mexico City in 1938, which is 67 metres (220 ft) high. The Arch of Triumph in Pyongyang, completed in 1982, is modelled on the Arc de Triomphe and is slightly taller at 60 m (197 ft). La Grande Arche in La Défense near Paris is 110 metres high.

Although it is not named an Arc de Triomphe, it has been designed on the same model and in the perspective of the Arc de Triomphe. It qualifies as the world’s tallest arch.

The Arc de Triomphe is located at the centre of a dodecagonal configuration of twelve radiating avenues. It was commissioned in 1806, after the victory at Austerlitz by Emperor Napoleon at the peak of his fortunes.

The Arc de Triomphe is accessible by the RER and Métro, with exit at the Charles de Gaulle—Étoile station (map). Because of heavy traffic on the roundabout of which the Arc is the centre, it is recommended that pedestrians use one of two underpasses located at the Champs Élysées and the Avenue de la Grande Armée.

A lift will take visitors almost to the top – to the attic, where there is a small museum which contains large models of the Arc and tells its story from the time of its construction. Another 40 steps remain to climb in order to reach the top, the terrasse, from where one can enjoy a panoramic view of Paris.

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 BUS >   The Noctilien (Map of Noctilien) is a night bus service that operates in Paris and the Paris region from 12.30am to 5.30am. sobus.travel — sells bus tickets for all the bus companies. OuibusIsilinesFlixBusEurolinesMegabus >> (*Intercity buses in France)

 RAIL >   Trains are a great way to get around in France. For regional trains, schedules can be found at ter.sncf.com. You can get from pretty much anywhere to anywhere else by train. For long distances, use the TGV (Train à Grande Vitesse, or High-speed train) on which reservations are obligatory. TGVThelloOuigo. + RailEurope • EurostarThalysizy (Paris-Brussels) • TGV Lyria (Switzerland) • DB (Germany) • RENFE (Barcelona) >> *Rail travel in France

 AIRPORTS >   aeroport.fr – list of airports in France. parisaeroport.fr – Paris airport information.

 WATERWAYS >   Brittany FerriesP&O FerriesDFDS Seaways

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