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Top 5 Paris Views

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Few people visit Paris without getting at least one amazing view, usually from a high point, of the beautiful city's panoramas. Here are the best spots to get Paris views, whether you want to scale the Eiffel Tower or simply gaze on the Seine River from a historic bridge.

1. Notre Dame de Paris

View of Paris from Notre Dame de Paris
Get up close and personal with gargoyles. See the Seine River and the Eiffel Tower. While Notre Dame de Paris may not be the highest point for views of Paris, it's definitely the best. You have to climb lots of dizzying spiral stairs to get there, but the incredible view of Paris is a fabulous reward.

2. Eiffel Tower

I'm not a fan of the too-high-to-see-much view, the long lines or the rather unsophisticated look of the elevators going up the Eiffel Tower, but this is easily the most popular spot to get a view of Paris. Besides, if I left it off the list, I would get dozens of angry emails from Parisianados scolding me for my thoughtless oversight. A cool aspect of this view is you can buy a postcard and send it right from the Eiffel Tower post office, with an official Eiffel Tower postal imprint.

3. Arc de Triomphe

From below, the Arc de Triomphe doesn't look all that big. After climbing more than a hundred steps and seeing the splendid view from the rooftop, its height becomes obvious. The nice part of this view is that the Champs Elysees (frankly, prettier from above) is one of the spokes off of the Arc de Triomphe. Because this is at a traffic hub, you can walk around and shoot pictures of various views of Paris. It is also interesting to watch the chaotic traffic fighting its way around the roundabout which encircles the Arc de Triomphe.

4. Montparnasse 56

Get an amazing view of Paris from 56 stories up. This modern skyscraper features an elevator that whisks visitors to the 56th floor in a brisk 38 seconds. This is also a relatively undiscovered area to tourists, and is well worth wandering for the many sidewalk cafes and unique shops.

5. Seine River Bridges

If there is a bad view from a Seine River bridge in the heart of Paris, I have yet to find it. Each bridge has its own story, its own style, and its own unique view of Paris. No trip to Paris is complete without stepping to the middle of a Seine River bridge, stopping and just gazing out at the beauty of the river slicing a path through the center of the City of Light.
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