Eiffel Tower in Paris, France
© Susanne Kremer/eStock Phot
Happy birthday to the Eiffel Tower!. Eiffel Tower, Paris
Bon anniversaire to the Eiffel Tower, which turns 133 today. Synonymous with all things Parisian, it’s one of the world’s most recognisable structures and the most-visited monument with an entrance fee. Towering over the City of Lights, it was an amazing achievement considering it was built at a time when structures of this size were unheard of. Its official height has recently increased further from 1,063ft (324m) to 1,083ft (330m), thanks to the addition of a new communications antenna. The landmark took 500 workers two years, two months and five days to complete and was unveiled at the 1889 Exposition Universelle (World Fair).
In cold weather, the Eiffel Tower can shrink by about 18cm and the top of the tower will naturally sway on a windy day. That wind gets collected by turbines and converted into electricity for the tower’s shops and restaurants while a rainwater collection system is used to fill the toilet tanks. The Eiffel Tower gets a fresh paint job roughly every seven years. Originally it was dark red, then yellow, but has been ‘Eiffel Tower Brown’ for the past 54 years. It takes around 16,000 gallons of paint to get the job done.