Arc de Triomphe

Arc de Triomphe showing street scenes, night scenes and heritage architecture
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An imposing monument at the center of a busy traffic intersection, the archway rises majestically above the city, with coveted city views.

While the vista from 164 feet (50 meters) above Paris will lure you to the top of the Arc de Triomphe, there’s much to see at the base of this landmark. It stands in the Place Charles de Gaulle where 12 straight avenues, including the Champs-Élysées, intersect and form “the star” of the city.

Although this is a busy intersection at the center of the city, you can easily reach the monument via car or sidewalk via the picturesque Champs-Élysées. There’s also enough pedestrian-only space around the arch to admire its architecture and decorative artwork from a safe distance.

There is an admission fee to reach the top of the arch via 284 steps or the elevator. Once there, you’ll find a museum, gift shop and views down the Champs-Élysées. The surrounding streets are particularly beautiful in the early evening when the city’s lights begin to sparkle.

It’s free to explore the base of the arch. Four massive pillars beneath an attic form a vaulted passageway so wide a pilot flew his plane through it in 1919. In 1920, the body of an unknown soldier was buried here and an eternal flame was added in 1923, in remembrance of those who died in World War I. The flame is rekindled in a daily ritual at 6:30 p.m.

The arch is a memorial to all those who fought for France, but particularly those in the Napoléonic wars. Its inner sides and top are engraved with the details of various wars and the 558 generals who fought in them. Each of its four pillars is decorated with a sculpture in relief. The most famous is Francois Rude’s The Departure of the Volunteers of 1792. It depicts everyday French people ready to defend their country, lead by the allegorical figure of Liberty. This work so encapsulated the patriotic zeal of the nation that it became known as La Marseillaise, after the national anthem.

Napoléon I commissioned the arch after his victory at Austerlitz in 1806. He promised his army they would “return home through arches of triumph”, but died before his grand tribute was completed in 1836.

The Arc de Triomphe is located in the 16th arrondissement on Paris’ Right Bank. It’s open daily, but one of the best days of the year to visit the arch is July 14th, Bastille Day. The Bastille Day parade follows the length of the Champs-Élysées and a huge flag billows from the arch’s crown creating a colorful photo op. This monument is easily accessible via bus, subway, railway or on foot. Driving is a bit trickier, as parking can be difficult to find.

Top Hotels Close to Arc de Triomphe

Elsa Hotel Paris
Elsa Hotel Paris
4 out of 5
27 Avenue Carnot, Paris, Paris, 75017
The price is $101 per night from Aug 22 to Aug 23
Stay at this 4-star business-friendly hotel in Paris. Enjoy free WiFi, breakfast, and a 24-hour front desk. Our guests praise the breakfast and the helpful staff ...
4.9/5 Exceptional! (19 reviews)
"Room was comfortable Site pictures and description of room as delux was misleading…extremely tiny room (607) where we could not even open our suitcases! Included breakfast was worse than average and especially the machine coffee was terrible. Friendly staff - a lesson that you get what you pay for…it ..."

Reviewed on Aug 16, 2022

Elsa Hotel Paris
Hotel Raphael
Hotel Raphael
5 out of 5
17 Avenue Kleber, Paris, Paris, 75116
The price is $467 per night from Aug 20 to Aug 21
Stay at this 5-star luxury hotel in Paris. Enjoy free WiFi, a rooftop terrace, and breakfast. Our guests praise the breakfast and the helpful staff in our reviews. ...
4.5/5 Wonderful! (442 reviews)
"I had a great experience staying at raffea Hotel Raphaël especially it close proximity to the wonderful restaurants in the area."

Reviewed on Aug 8, 2022

Hotel Raphael
citizenM Paris Champs-Élysées
citizenM Paris Champs-Élysées
4 out of 5
128 Rue la Boétie, Paris, 75008
The price is $193 per night from Aug 21 to Aug 22
Stay at this 4-star business-friendly hotel in Paris. Enjoy free WiFi, breakfast, and a 24-hour front desk. Popular attractions Champs-Elysees and Arc de Triomphe ...
4.7/5 Exceptional! (202 reviews)
"After this experience I will ONLY stay at citizen M! The staff are awesome, it’s super convenient and just loved how efficient, stylish, convenient, clean everything was perfection. I’ll stick to this chain of hotels whenever possible! It was my first time with them and now they a costumer for LIFE! ..."

Reviewed on Aug 1, 2022

citizenM Paris Champs-Élysées
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Best Lodging Options Near Arc de Triomphe

Elsa Hotel Paris
Elsa Hotel Paris
4 out of 5
27 Avenue Carnot, Paris, Paris, 75017
The price is $101 per night from Aug 22 to Aug 23
Elsa Hotel Paris
Hotel Raphael
Hotel Raphael
5 out of 5
17 Avenue Kleber, Paris, Paris, 75116
The price is $467 per night from Aug 20 to Aug 21
Hotel Raphael
citizenM Paris Champs-Élysées
citizenM Paris Champs-Élysées
4 out of 5
128 Rue la Boétie, Paris, 75008
The price is $193 per night from Aug 21 to Aug 22
citizenM Paris Champs-Élysées
Hotel Marmotel Etoile
Hotel Marmotel Etoile
3 out of 5
34 avenue de la Grande Armee, Paris, Paris, 75017
The price is $127 per night from Sep 5 to Sep 6
Hotel Marmotel Etoile
Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel
Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel
4 out of 5
18 avenue de Suffren, Entrée au 22 rue Jean Rey, Paris, Paris, 75015
The price is $421 per night from Sep 1 to Sep 2
Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel
Montfleuri Hotel
Montfleuri Hotel
4 out of 5
21, avenue de la Grande Armée, Paris, Paris, 75116
The price is $167 per night from Aug 26 to Aug 27
Montfleuri Hotel
The Peninsula Paris
The Peninsula Paris
5 out of 5
19 Avenue Kléber, Paris, Paris, 75116
The price is $1,711 per night from Aug 18 to Aug 19
The Peninsula Paris
Renaissance Paris Arc de Triomphe Hotel
Renaissance Paris Arc de Triomphe Hotel
5 out of 5
39 avenue de Wagram, Paris, Paris, 75017
The price is $390 per night from Aug 20 to Aug 21
Renaissance Paris Arc de Triomphe Hotel
Hotel Chambiges Elysées
Hotel Chambiges Elysées
4 out of 5
8 Rue Chambiges, Paris, Paris, 75008
The price is $184 per night from Aug 31 to Sep 1
Hotel Chambiges Elysées
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.