The Eiffel Tower is a symbol of Paris and all of France, although it was originally built as a temporary structure for the 1889 World`s Fair. It is located on the Seine embankment and is now recognized as the most visited paid monument in the world. Every year, more than 6 million tourists climb the Eiffel Tower to enjoy the magnificent views of the center of Paris.
Three years before the World`s Fair, the authorities of Paris announced a competition to create an architectural composition that would represent the technological progress of mankind. It was attended by more than a hundred architects, including engineer Gustav Eiffel. He proposed to build a tower of wrought iron. This was the simplest material for a temporary structure, which was later supposed to be disassembled.
For the construction of the tower, an amount of 8 million francs was required, but the mayor`s office allocated only 1.5 million francs for this. Gustav Eiffel offered to independently find funds for the construction of the tower at the expense of personal funds and loans from the bank. In return, he demanded that the tower be leased to him for 25 years with the possibility of its commercial operation. After the signing of this agreement in 1887, construction began.
Thanks to the precise drawings, it went at a fast pace. Cast-iron parts weighing no more than 3 tons and about 2.5 million cast-iron rivets were used. The appearance of this construction over the houses of the central districts of Paris caused sharp criticism and hostility from the creative people of the capital. They demanded to dismantle this "monster" immediately. In 1887, 300 writers and artists of France sent a protest to the municipality, demanding to stop the construction of the tower. But the Eiffel Tower was saved by a 25-year lease agreement with Eiffel.
After the exhibition, the tower became a tourist attraction. All investments in the construction of the Eiffel Tower paid off literally after 1 year, as the tower did not cause rejection among ordinary tourists. In front of the tower there was always a queue of people who wanted to climb it. Visitors can climb up to three levels of the tower. They are located at an altitude of 57 meters, 115 meters and 276 meters. In addition to the observation decks, there are restaurants and bars on three levels.
The height of the tower reaches 324 meters. From date of its construction in 1889 until 1930, it was the tallest building in the world, so numerous radio and television transmitters were installed on top of it. They saved the tower from being dismantled when the 25-year contract with Gustav Eiffel ended. Over time, Parisians got used to the tower, which by that time received the name of the creator – the Eiffel Tower.
On the opposite bank of the Seine is located the Chaillot Palace. Its observation deck offers the most beautiful view of the Eiffel Tower. On the opposite side of the Eiffel Tower is adjacent to the huge Champ de Mars. On summer days, tourists like to relax on its grass.