The 2024 Summer Olympics: Showcasing Paris to the World

The 2024 Summer Olympics: Showcasing Paris to the World
The world is coming to Paris for the 33rd Olympiad in summer 2024 and the preparations reveal that the city plans to host quite a party. Yes, it will be a 21st-century sporting extravaganza, but also a chance to showcase Paris at its spectacular best. All the world’s favorite Parisian sights will play their part, in the opening ceremony and also in the events themselves, and there will be more than 100,000 hours of television coverage so global audiences will have every chance to drool. The opening ceremony on July 26th 2024 will put Paris center stage immediately. Instead of the usual stadium procession, athletes and officials will sail down the River Seine against a backdrop of iconic Parisian vistas: Notre-Dame, the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower. For this Parade of Nations, 160 boats will carry athletes from over 200 countries along a four-mile route from the Pont d’Austerlitz to the Trocadéro, watched by an enormous global audience. And 600,000 spectators will be invited to line the river or stand on specially built viewing platforms along the route. As the IOC President Thomas Bach explains, the opening ceremony will focus on the River Seine, “the emblematic river in the very heart of the city.” Champ de Mars © Wikimedia Commons, CC BY 2.0 Paris will remain center stage for the whole of the Games, as many of the landmark sights form backdrops for the sporting events. The city has already proved that adding the shock of the new to a historic building can bring new perspectives: setting the modernistic Arche de la Défense against the stately Arc de Triomphe, planting the provocative Centre Pompidou, nicknamed “the oil refinery,” in the ancient quartier of Beaubourg. Quirky juxtapositions will make the 2024 Games memorable too. Beach volleyball will be played on the Champs de Mars, with the Eiffel Tower in the background and there will be BMX and skateboarding on the Place de la Concorde. Taekwondo at the Grand Palais will be memorable and who will forget watching archery on the Esplanade des Invalides or equestrian events at Versailles? Running and cycling events will take athletes – and their global audience – through the city. The routes for road races will include Les Invalides, the Trocadéro and the Hôtel de Ville, beginning at the Pont d’Iéna and ending at the foot of the Eiffel Tower. The marathon will start from the Hôtel de Ville and finish at Les Invalides. The road cycling time trials will start at Les Invalides and finish at Pont Alexandre III. The latter, often named the most beautiful bridge in Paris, will also feature in the marathon swimming and triathlon events. Paris will be ever-present in the 2024 Olympics in a way no previous host city has managed, delighting Paris lovers and winning millions of new admirers. Stade Roland Garros © Wikimedia Commons

Lead photo credit : A public viewing party for the 2020 Summer Olympics at Place du Trocadéro, which will be the site of the protocol for the 2024 opening ceremony © Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 2.0

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Recently retired from teaching Modern Languages (French and German), Marian now has time to develop her interests in travel and European culture and history. She will be in Paris as often as she can, visiting places old and new, finding out their stories and writing it all up as soon as she gets home. Marian also runs the weekly podcast series, City Breaks, offering in-depth coverage of popular city break destinations, with lots of background history and cultural information. She has covered Paris in 22 episodes but looks forward to updating the series every now and then with some Paris Extra episodes.