Fun facts about Paris – The city of lights

Paris is one of those cities that don’t need an introduction anymore. Everybody knows it. Yet, there are a lot of fun facts about the city of Paris that you might not know yet. Let’s dive in!

General fun facts about Paris

There is a lot to say about the city of Paris itself. I also made a couple of location-specific fun facts you can find scrolling down this blog post. So let’s get the general ones started!

  • There are 470.000 trees in Paris. They counted them all! That quite a lot!
  • In Paris, you can find more than 9057 terraces to sit and have a drink. Santé!
  • The public transportation network contains 302 metro stations, making it the 4th largest in the world.
  • ‘Only’ 7 million people visit the Eiffel tower each year.
  • Wattana, the world’s smartest orangutan lives in the zoo of Paris.
  • They have their own Statue of Liberty in the city. Can you find it?
  • City of Lights refers to the number of intellectuals living in Paris and not the lights as many think. Paris is home of many painters, writers, and other intellectuals.
  • Paris Syndrome is realizing the city is not as pretty and awesome as you thought it would be.
  • There are 1803 monuments and 173 museums in Paris, so make sure to book a long enough stay!
  • The obelisk on Place de la Concorde is actually a giant sundial.
  • The oldest cafe, Le Procope, is around since 1686. I hope there are no drinks still in stock from back then.
  • In Paris, you can find 830 libraries, most of the entire world. Imagine how many books that are!
  • The French army still uses carrier pigeons as a backup. You just never know!
  • There are 300.000 dogs in Paris. Enough to satisfy all dog lovers!
  • There used to be 1 million locks on the Love bridge, weighing around 45 tons.
  • More than 83 million visitors visited Paris in 2014.
  • Paris’ old name is Lutetia

Fun facts about the Notre Dame in Paris

The Notre Dame is the most visited monument in Paris and in France. It was only logical to put it first in the list of monument-specific fun facts.

  • The main bell of the Notre Dame is named Emmanuel and weighs 13 tonnes
  • 14 million people visit Notre-Dame each year, that twice as many as the Eiffel Tower.
  • It is built between 1163 and 1345 in the Gothic style.
  • A lot of the bells have been melted down for artillery in the French Revolution.
  • There is a bee-hive on the roof, making honey from the nearby gardens. I’d love to taste it!
  • It’s owned by the French State, but the Catholic Church as eternal usage rights.
  • The chimeras are only added since the 19th century. Not to be confused with the gargoyles! 😉

Fun facts about the Eiffel Tower in Paris

Even though it’s not the most visited hotspot in Paris it’s probably one of the most iconic ones. Let’s get into it!

  • The Eiffel tower was meant to be temporary. Planned to only stand there for 20 years.
  • There are 1665 steps to the top of the Eiffel Tower. You can also just use the elevator.
  • Construction took 2 years, 2 months and 5 days and was completed on March 31, 1889
  • Gustave Eiffel only bought the right to the patent and invested in the tower. It was actually designed by Maurice Koechlin and Emile Nougueier
  • In 1941 the French cut the cables of the Eiffel Tower’s elevator so Hitler wouldn’t be able to get to the top of the tower. A symbolic act of defiance.
  • In 2007 an America woman married the tower. This actually happened!
  • At night the lights are copyrighted. So technically you’re not allowed to Instagram them.
  • Repainting the tower is done by hand. I just hope they use more than a pencil.
  • The tower is 300m high.
  • It was the tallest building for 41 years until, in 1930, the Chrysler building took over.
  • Barcelona rejected it first because it didn’t match their style.
  • It grows 18cm in the summer because of thermal expansion of the metal. I’m not the only one thinking this can be interpreted in a dirty way. Right?
  • 20.000 light bulbs light up the Eiffel Tower at night. But as previously stated, this is considered as a copyrighted work of art.
  • 60 tons of paint are used every 7 years. That’s a lot of paint!
  • It weighs around 10.000 tonnes. That doesn’t come as a surprise since it’s all made of metal.

Fun facts about the Arc de Triomphe in Paris

A huge building made from stone. A bit as if it’s the stoney counterpart of the Eiffel Tower. It stands tall and proud at the end of the Champs-Elysees. Let get into the Arch de Triomphe fun facts.

  • The construction of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris was commissioned by Napoleon in 1806
  • It took 30 years to finish. So Napoleon wasn’t alive when it was finally completed in 1836
  • It’s 50m high, 45m wide and 22m deep. That’s a lot of brick!
  • 558 names of French generals of the First French Empire are engraved in the Arch.
  • Beneath the Arch lies the Unknown Soldier of World War I.

Fun facts about the Champs-Elysees in Paris

It’s known as the most expensive street in Paris. With a lot of shops, it has to be a touristic highlight!

  • Founded in 1616 by Marie de Medici as an extension of the Palais des Tuileries.
  • It’s 1910m long and 70m wide.
  • In 1975 it became the end destination of the Tour de France.

Fun facts about the Louvre in Paris

One of the most famous art museums in the world. Best known for having the beautiful Mona Lisa in its collection.

  • Its the biggest museum in the world. A huge castle with a huge art collection.
  • 380.000 pieces are in the collection. Though, a lot are hidden for the public.
  • 35.000 pieces are on display, which is only a fraction of the entire collection.
  • 15.000 visitors each day, means a lot of security and managed has to be done.
  • Built around 1190 as a fortress, then turned into a castle and later a museum.
  • The Mona Lisa was stolen in 1911 for two years. It was found when the thief tried to sell it.
  • The pyramid in the center was built in 1989 and is 21m high. It’s part of a collection of pyramids.
  • It became a museum in 1793, which is a long long time already!
  • It is haunted by a mummy named Belphegor. The guy loves art probably.

What is your favorite fun fact about Paris? Let me know in the comments below!

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