Eiffel Tower closed as Paris is hit by huge snowfall

Paris snow: Even winter misery looks better in France

Paris snow: Even winter misery looks better in France

The Eiffel Tower, one of the world's most visited tourists attractions, was closed for a second day in a row due to the weather.

Men walk with skis on a snow-covered path near the Eiffel Tower in Paris, as winter weather with snow and freezing temperatures arrive in France.

Skiers swished down the hilly streets of Montmartre in Paris on Wednesday, taking advantage of heavy snowfall that otherwise spelled misery for thousands of travellers.

Across France, 28 regions are on orange alert following the unsafe weather conditions and ice on the roads.

The extreme cold comes after weeks of mild and rainy weather across northern France in recent weeks, which caused flooding in various areas and pushed the Seine River to four metres above its normal levels.

Flights were disrupted at Orly and Paris's Charles de Gaulle airport Wednesday morning, the result of de-icing operations but also because many staff were unable to make it to work. On subway services in Paris, commuters faced long journeys in packed carriages.

Already at 12 centimeters in Paris, and expected to rise, the snow has halted bus services in the capital, and rail operator SNCF was forced to slow down trains on several of its high-speed TGV lines.

Yu Jian and his newlywed wife Chen Yiyun could not have hoped for more romantic scenery for their wedding photo session.

"It's attractive when it snows", the couple told The Associated Press.

French car-making giants Renault and PSA meanwhile said they had been forced to halt production at their factories in the Paris suburbs as the ban on lorry transport left them short on auto parts.

In anticipation of the cold, the "Grand Froid" plan - which translates as "Big Cold" - had been launched earlier this week in 22 departments in order to create about 1,000 extra housing places for homeless people.

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