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Explore the Arc de Triomphe in Paris | Highlights, visitor’s guide & more

Located at the center of the Star Square, the Arc De Triomphe honors those who fought and died during the French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars. Witness the breathtaking view from the observation deck for a view of the Eiffel Tower and Louvre.

Also Known As

Triumphal Arch of the Star

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Fun facts

The construction of Arc de Triomphe took over 30 years and various architects due to political changes and funding issues.

The Arc de Triomphe is the second-largest triumphal arch in the world and was the largest until 1982 before The Arch of Triumph in Pyongyang, North Korea was built.

Although commissioned by Emperor Napoleon, he never had the chance to see the Arch completed as the project continued for 15 years after his death. However, his body was later moved to the arch in 1850.

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Combo (Save 10%): Arc de Triomphe Rooftop + Seine River Cruise Tickets
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Combo (Save 5%): Fondation Louis Vuitton + Arc de Triomphe Entry Tickets with Rooftop Access
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What is the Arc de Triomphe?

A triumphal arc honoring French victories, the Arc de Triomphe is a key symbol of French identity and the world's second-tallest arc. Commissioned in 1806 by Napoleon to commemorate soldiers who died during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, the Arc spans 162 feet in height. Designed with Neoclassical features of Roman architecture, it has stunning sculpture groups. Today, it is the venue for the annual Bastille Day military parade and the end-point for the Tour de France, and it sees nearly 2 million visitors every year.

Visiting this iconic landmark is a must-do activity in Paris, and so is the surreal view of the city's landscape from the Arc de Triomphe rooftop. Book your tickets to experience and pay homage to French history.

Quick facts about the Arc de Triomphe

Arc de Triomphe

Plan your visit to the Arc de Triomphe

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What to see at the Arc de Triomphe

tomb of the unknown soldier, arc de triomphe

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

The Arc de Triomphe has been a symbol of France's resilience and strength for centuries. Since November 11th, 1920, it has been the final resting place of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Initially, there was a debate over where to honor an anonymous soldier. The Chamber of Deputies unanimously voted for the burial at the Arc. Two years later, the idea of a Flame of Remembrance was proposed and has continued to burn since 1923.

arc de triomphe inscriptions

Inscriptions

The grand arches of the Arc de Triomphe stand as a memorial to the countless brave soldiers who lost their lives serving their country. The attic and inner facades of this monument bear the names of 158 battles fought by the French First Republic and the First French Empire. The inner faces of the small arches are inscribed with the names of 660 military leaders who served in the French Revolution Wars and the Napoleonic Wars.

arc de triomphe museum

Museum

The Arc de Triomphe serves as a home to a small museum that is dedicated to the history and importance of the monument, which is situated just under the observation deck. With historical exhibits such as artifacts, photographs, drawings, and models of the arch, you'll be transported back in time to the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. Learn about the wards and soldiers who bravely fought and lost their lives for France's freedom.

arc de triomphe sculptural groups

Pillars

The pillars, created between 1833 and 1836, are each decorated with distinct sculpted groups. François Rude's Departure of the Volunteers represents the conscription of 1792 when 200,000 men fought against foreign armies. Jean-Pierre Cortot's Napoleon's Triumph captures the Napoleonic Empire's expansion in 1810. Antoine Etex's The Resistance is a testament to the nation's resistance to invasion in 1814, and Etex's The Peace represents the return of peace to France after the Treaty of Paris of 1815.

History of the Arc de Triomphe in a nutshell

The Arc de Triomphe, located on the right bank of the river Seine, is the central feature of the Axe Historique. Commissioned by Napoleon I, the arch was completed under the watch of the French King, Louis-Philippe, who dedicated the monument to the armies of the revolution and the Empire.

In 1921, inspired by the Unknown Warrior in Westminster Abbey in the United Kingdom, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was placed beneath the arch after World War I, and the Eternal Flame is rekindled every day at 6:30pm, a tradition followed even today.

The Arc de Triomphe was the tallest triumphal arch until the completion of the Monumento a la Revolución in Mexico City in 1938. Following its construction, the Arc also became the rallying point of French troops parading after successful military campaigns.

The Arc de Triomphe is also the venue for the annual Bastille Day military parades and the last point on the Tour de France. Today, it remains one of the most famous Paris attractions, with over 1.7 million visitors every year.

Who built the Arc de Triomphe?

The Arc de Triomphe in Paris was conceptualized by architect Jean Chalgrin, who drew inspiration from the Roman Arch of Titus. Construction began in 1806. Unfortunately, Jean Chalgrin passed away in 1811, and Louis-Robert Goust, a former student of Chalgrin, took over. Construction was halted due to the imperial defeat and invasion, but it resumed in 1824 under the architect Jean-Nicolas Huyot. Huyot proposed changes to the original design and was replaced by architect Guillaume-Abel Blouet in 1832 who oversaw the monument's completion in 1836 during the reign of French King Louis-Phillipe.

Architecture & design of the Arc de Triomphe

Architecture & design of the Arc de Triomphe

Frequently asked questions about the Arc de Triomphe in Paris

What is the Arc de Triomphe?

The Arc de Triomphe is one of the largest arches in the world and is considered a symbol of French identity. It was built in 1806 to honor the soldiers who lost their lives during the French Revolution and the Napoleonic wars. Each year, almost 2 million people visit the arch to bask in the breathtaking view of the city's landscape from its rooftop.

Why is the Arc de Triomphe famous?

The Arc de Triomphe is one of the largest arches in the world, built in 1806 to honor the soldiers who lost their lives during the French Revolution and the Napoleonic wars. With a height of 162 feet and spanning 150 feet, it is a magnificent example of Roman architecture with neoclassical features. The annual Bastille Day military parade and the Tour de France race are significant events that take place around the Arc de Triomphe, attracting nearly 2 million visitors every year.

What can I do at the Arc de Triomphe?

At the Arc de Triomphe, you can learn about the history of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars, admire the architectural marvel of one of the tallest arches in the world, treat yourself to a splendid view of the city from the Arc de Triomphe rooftop, and more.

How can I get tickets to the Arc de Triomphe?

Tickets to the Arc de Triomphe can be bought at the site or online. Booking your tickets online lets you avail discounts, skip the line, book guided tours and combo tickets, and get 24/7 customer service.

How much are the Arc de Triomphe tickets?

A standard ticket with Arc de Triomphe rooftop access costs €16.50. However, prices may vary with additional features such as audio guides or guided tours, skip-the-line tickets, or combo tours.

Are there guided tours available at the Arc de Triomphe?

Yes, guided tours are available at the Arc de Triomphe. However, these are not included in your standard entry tickets and come at an additional cost.

Who designed the Arc de Triomphe?

The Arc de Triomphe was designed by Jean Chalgrin, inspired by the Roman Arch of Titus. Although construction began in 1806, Chalgrin passed away in 1811. The project was then taken over by his former student Louis Robert-Goust.

When was the Arc de Triomphe built?

Commissioned by Napoleon in 1806, the Arc de Triomphe took over 30 years to be constructed. Designed by Jean Chalgrin, the Arc's construction was taken over by several other architects. With the imperial defeat and invasion, construction was halted for several years. It was only in 1836 that the Arc was finally inaugurated.

Where is the Arc de Triomphe located?

The Arc de Triomphe is located at Place Charles-de-Gaulle, 75008 Paris.

How can I get to the Arc de Triomphe?

The Arc de Triomphe is located at Place Charles-de-Gaulle, 75008 Paris. The easiest way to get to the Arc is by metro. Metro lines 1, 2, and 6 stop at the Charles de Gaulle–Étoile station nearby. You can also get to the Arc by RER line A. Buses 22, 30, 31, 52, 73, 92 and Balabus also stop near the Arc at Charles de Gaulle–Étoile.

What are the Arc de Triomphe timings?

The Arc de Triomphe is open from 10am to 11pm between April and September and from 10am to 10:30pm between October and March.

What is the best time to visit the Arc de Triomphe?

The best time to visit the Arc de Triomphe is in the early morning and on weekdays, especially Tuesday through Thursday. If you want to avoid the crowds, visit during the off-season, from September to December and February to May.

Is the Arc de Triomphe wheelchair accessible?

Yes, the Arc de Triomphe is wheelchair accessible. There are elevators for visitors with reduced mobility. There is also a dedicated drop-off point for wheelchair users as the underground tunnel is inaccessible to those with mobility issues.

Are there dining options available at the Arc de Triomphe?

There are no restaurants or dining outlets inside the Arc de Triomphe. However, you can dine at one of the nearby restaurants.

Is photography allowed at the Arc de Triomphe?

Yes, photography is allowed both inside and outside the Arc de Triomphe.

Is there a dress code for visiting the Arc de Triomphe?

No, there is no strict dress code to be followed to visit the Arc de Triomphe. However, wear comfortable clothing to keep warm, especially if you plan to visit the Arc de Triomphe rooftop.

What other attractions are near the Arc de Triomphe?

Nearby attractions include the Eiffel Tower, the Palais Garnier, the Orsay Museum, and the Louvre Museum.