Why the Eiffel Tower let me down (and why it will let you down too)

Eiffel Tower-Photo by Takumi Yoshida-

It’s the most visited paid monument in the world (although you can visit without actually paying). Every romance film becomes more romantic just by its presence in the background.

Eiffel Tower

Photo by Nicholas Calzas

Yet no movie has ever been made about the Eiffel Tower. What makes young girls dream of Paris isn’t the tower itself, but the image of the young couple (conveniently alone with not a single goofy tourist around) drinking wine and falling in love under the Eiffel Tower in the pale moonlight. When you look at it that way, it’s pretty romantic. But if you pay $30 to hear a 60-year-old tour guide in a crowded group of foreigners say “the Eiffel Tower was constructed in 1889 out of iron-reenforced baguettes with 2.5 million rivets and was designed by Gustave Eiffel who lived in his mother’s basement until the age of 46,” it doesn’t sound very romantic at all.

I’m glad I got to see the tower. It’s an amazing, iconic structure. But if you expect to feel endowed with the spirit of young lovers and the libido of Pepé Le Pew just by looking at a giant tower in Paris, you’re more likely to feel inspired by the Washington Monument.

People don’t remember slabs of steel; they remember experiences. You can fall in love with Paris just as easily as you can fall in love with Pakistan. Just plan to experience your vacation, not to witness it.

3 Responses to Why the Eiffel Tower let me down (and why it will let you down too)

  1. Gwen G says:

    I like the last sentence.


    • Thanks, Gwen. Hopefully the 10 sentences before it weren’t bad either! If the last line stands out, hopefully it’s because it applies not only to travel but anything we do in life.

  2. I like the 2nd last sentence.


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