In May, France began easing coronavirus-related restrictions on social life after two months of lockdowns that were so strict that people had to fill out paperwork just to step out of their homes. As of today, restaurants and cafes have fully reopened (salons and shops have been open since last month), while schools and movie theaters will follow next week.
As life resumes in Paris, so too will its most iconic—and heavily trafficked—landmarks.
On June 25, the Eiffel Tower will reopen for the first time since its closure in March—the last time the 19th-century monument was closed this long was during World War II. There is a catch, though. Elevators to the top will remain out of service—just the first and second floors are open to visitors, and via stairs only.
Everyone over the age of 11 will be required to wear a mask, while crowd control measures will be put in place as well as daily cleanings and disinfections. The online ticketing office plans to open soon—it's highly advised that visitors book their tickets in advance online. Updates can be found here.
The Musée de Louvre will follow the Eiffel Tower's lead on July 6. Pre-coronavirus, the former palace was the world's most visited museum, welcoming 9.6 million people in 2019. Post-coronavirus, the hours-long ticket lines and hordes of tourists angling for a good shot of the Mona Lisa will become things of the past.
Masks will be mandatory and visitors will be required to book their time slots in advance here or through official vendors such as Tiqets, Mon Petit Paris, and the Paris Convention and Visitors Bureau. Everyone entering the museum must disinfect their hands with hand sanitizer provided at each entrance. Signs will be installed throughout with recommended itineraries, which visitors will be required to follow during peak times in order to manage the flow of foot traffic.
"Although we have been providing resources on Louvre masterpieces online, nothing can replace the emotion felt when standing face to face with such treasures—the raison d’être of all museums," Jean-Luc Martinez, the Louvre's president-director, said in a statement.
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