Paris Travel Planner   La Grande Arche de la Défense, Paris
Paris is old...and new at La Grande Arche de la Défense, a striking  ultramodern business center at the far end of the avenue west of the Arc de Triomphe.




The beauty of central Paris is in its historic preservation, but what to do when the city needs many new buildings for business and government offices?

La Grande Arche de la Défense and La Défense business district are one answer: build all the tall structures you want to the west of the historic center.

La Grande Arche certainly lives up to its name: a huge arched office building right in line with, and to the west of, Napoleon's historic Arc de Triomphe (map).

For one of those spectacular Paris panoramas, pay the moderate fee to take the elevator/lift to the roof of La Grande Arche. The glass lift is an experience in itself.

On the roof, all of Paris is spread out for you. The view straight down the broad boulevard to the Arc de Triomphe is the most satisfying:

View from La Grande Arche de la Defense, Paris, France
View from the roof toward the Arc de Triomphe.

The Métro (Line 1 to La Défense) or RER A-1 will take you right to La Grande Arche. You ascend to a vast plaza surrounded by ultramodern buildings of all shapes and sizes, with crowds of people marching purposefully here and there.

At lunchtime in fair weather, many office-workers and visitors sit on the spacious staircase of La Grande Arche to eat their lunch and enjoy the sun. (Take away sandwiches and other foods are available in shops beneath the plaza.)

Arc de Triomphe

Avenue des Champs-Élysées

Paris Panoramas

What to See & Do in Paris

Planning Your Time in Paris

Finding Your Way Around Paris

Paris Transport


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Grande Arche de la Defense, Paris, France

Above, La Grande Arche de la Défense.




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