10 amazing facts you probably didn’t know about the architecture of the Eiffel Tower

There are few structures on this planet quite so breath-taking and iconic as the Eiffel Tower, but how much do you really know about this historic Paris landmark? Want to expand your knowledge about this stunning feat of engineering? Then read on…

1. Why is it called the Eiffel Tower?

Why not The Paris Tower or the Really Very Big Tower? What on earth is Eiffel? Well interestingly, the tower was named, not after a place, or some French dignitary, but after the man who built it, civil engineer and architect Gustav Eiffel. Gustav was also responsible for designing the Statue of Liberty!

2. When and why was it built?

The Eiffel Tower was built in 1889 as an incredibly grand entrance to the World’s Fair to mark the 100th anniversary of the French Revolution. Its construction took 2 years, 2 months, and 5 days to complete, making it the tallest structure in France by far until a military transmitter was built in Saissac in 1973.

3. How tall is the Eiffel Tower?

Now I expect you’d think there was just one answer to this question, but the true answer is that… it depends! Overall, the tower is approximately 320 metres tall, but being madeof iron, it expands in the heat, so in the height of summer the tower can be around 15cm taller than it is on a cold winter’s day.

4. How do you get to the top of the tower?

You have two options. The easy option is to take one of the two lifts that travel a total distance of 103,000km a year, each! But, if you really want a good workout, you can climb the stairs. All 1,665 of them!

5. How heavy is the Eiffel Tower?

Being made of iron, you’d expect the tower to be incredibly heavy, wouldn’t you? Well, you’d be right! The construction weighs around 10,000 tonnes! That’s the equivalent of around 2000 elephants!

6. How often is it painted?

Requiring around 60 tonnes of paint, the tower is repainted every 7 years to prevent oxidation. It’s been several different colours over the years including red and yellow ochre. Interestingly, the colour at the top is slightly different from that lower down, in order to make the structure look the same colour from top to bottom, with the contrast against the sky.

7. How popular is the Eiffel Tower?

Being an engineering marvel of the modern world and a well-known landmark of impressive size and style, answering this question is simple. The Eiffel Tower is very popular indeed! Since its opening in 1889, more than 250 million people have visited the tower, and today, the Eiffel Tower welcomes more than 7 million people every year, making it the most visited paid-for monument in the world!

8. Who else was involved in the building of the tower?

Engraved into the structure of the tower are 72 names. These are the names of engineers, mathematicians, and scientists who all helped to build the tower. What an amazing achievement!

9. Is it the only tower of its kind?

The Eiffel Tower was certainly the first, but due to its great popularity, it’s since been recreated several times around the world. There’s a full-scale replica in the heart of Tokyo, Japan, a half-sized replica in the Paris Las Vegas Hotel in Nevada, USA and the Blackpool Tower, in the seaside resort of Blackpool in England, all inspired by the Eiffel Tower.

10. Can you build your version of the Eiffel Tower?

Yes, you can! All you need is the awesome Eiffel Tower set from the Engino Mega Builds Collection. This brilliant kit gives you everything you need to build your very own replica Eiffel Tower that stands 1.5m high!

Calling all aspiring architects and engineers out there… Are you ready to build yours?

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