Pont des Arts
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The Most Romantic Spot in Paris
Strolling over the Pont des Arts, in spite of the tourists, and the cliché, bereted accordian player busquing for a Euro... even with the lovers buying locks to place on the fencing, and the nasal wail of the Bateaux Mouches loudspeakers floating below, the romance of the city tingles in the air, in every direction. Notre Dame/ Ile St Louis are on your right, the Tour Eiffel hinting from afar left, the Louvre and Tuileries beckoning ahead, and the domed roofs of the Left bank are at your back. It is hard not to cross this bridge without a smirk- either in remembrance of a long-ago kiss or in a state of daydream thinking about the one you wish you had with you.
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Parisian Love Locks
Paris, the city of love, demonstrates this very sentiment in true French fashion on the Pont des Arts bridge that spans the Seine. This simple pedestrian walkway links the Institut de France to the central square of the Louvre, and is a main thoroughfare for daily commuters in the city. For those that want to publicly proclaim their undying love for one another, this is also the bridge for doing just that. Simply put your names on a lock, affix it to the bridge, and toss the key into the Seine to symbolize a love that will remain unbroken for eternity. Note: be sure your love is the real deal, as some people have returned with bolt cutters when they deemed eternity a bit too long.
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Lover's Lock Bridge
Lovers from around the world symbolise their everlasting love on Paris's Pont des Arts, located just beside Notre Dame. Padlocks with the names of the lovebirds written on them are affixed to the bridge, and is a cute sight to see while in Ile de Cite, or as I did, from a cruise on the Seine
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bridges across the Seine
Across the Seine, the Pont des Arts (built 1804, rebuilt 1984), the Pont-Neuf (1607), and the Pont au Change (1860)...Through the ages, the bridges of Paris have always been places to cross, to rendezvous...
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Love Locks on the Pont des Artes
"Love Locks" on Paris' Pont des Artes with the Eiffel Tower in the background.
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Spend time looking at the Love Locks
These days a lot of the bridges in Paris (and now other cities in Europe) are full of love locks. Some people don't like them. Whether you agree or not they are certainly fun to look at! I prefer studying the ones on Pont des Arts, it is pedestrian bridge without cars and you can take your time. The locks are from all over the world, each one representing someone's love story. It is an absolutely free way to enjoy Paris bridges, the Seine and the celebration of love!
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Pont des Arts - Locked in Love
Paris and love are cliché. Spend enough time there and you realize it is like any other great world city; it’s a city. What tends to elevate in sometimes mythical proportions is how Paris effortlessly redefines itself on some of the simplest of tenants . On my latest trip I discovered one more reason to believe this place continues to punctuate its place on the map. Take Pont des Arts. A pedestrian “pedestrian” bridge over the Seine near Pont Neuf, which has been transformed from utilitarian viewpoint to a work living up to its name. Someone got the idea that attaching graffiti in the form of padlocks might make an interesting art statement. Simple in concept, complex in execution, the wire mesh railings are now covered in locks with names of lovers inscribed as a symbol of eternal connection and love. Voila. Masterpiece. You could spend hours perusing the collection, studying, photographing, dreaming about what the owners committed to with their acts of public declaration via desecration. It is an art installation extending the Parisian perspective to street level. The city, for its part, embraces these acts of defacement in exchange for an expansion of its own identity. What a pleasure to sit there in the middle of the span and unlock the harmony surrounding you. Go, feel, act. Lock and load. Bring your love, your lock and make a contribution to public art. You'll be leaving more questions than answers about love on the Pont des Arts for the world to see.
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Pont des Arts - even in winter
Pont des Arts is beautiful any time of year, but I found it to be especially gorgeous in the snowy/slushy weather. The locks are bright and pretty....reminding you that love can be quite strong even in a yucky storm. I know that's cheesy, but it's February and love is in the air!
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Paris Picnic Perfection
This is my most favorite place, in the whole wide world. I smile just writing those words. The sunsets, the picnics, the lovers, the bike tours, the boats- I love everything that you see from this bridge. A sunset picnic from this very spot can be the kind of experience that defines your trip to Europe. The Pont des Arts is a pedestrian only bridge that connects the hidden courtyard of the Louvre with the Academie Francaise, in Paris. It was built between 1802 and 1804, under the reign of Napoleon I, that was the first bridge made of metal, in the city. Find a local neighborhood to hit the bakery, butcher and cheese stores where you'll buy your picnic supplies. No French picnic is complete without poulet roti (rotisserie chicken), baguettes (the long, baseball bats of bread), entirely too much cheese and some strawberries or olives for good measure. Don't forget the wine (and the wine opener 'tire bouchon' in French) and a few pastries for dessert. Spread out your jackets or a small blanket and set out your feast for the sunset. You'll soon have other locals come over and offer you some of their dinner and then someone else will come over with champagne. There'll soon be hundreds of you eating, sharing, laughing and dancing. There's no better way to spend an evening in Paris.
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Stroll the Bridges
You don’t have to stand in line at all the tourist attractions to get the best views of Paris. Skip the lines and head for the bridges! Take an evening stroll, breathe in the delicious Paris air, and watch the sun work its magic on this beautiful city. When the sun goes down, the city and its bridges light up. Stay up late and share in the nightlife. This is when the locals come out to dance and sing along the Seine. Bring a picnic, sit beside the river, and listen to the hum of the city. This is the best time to watch Paris sparkle.
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New developments at Pont des Arts, Paris
A favorite destination of mine in Paris. This visit I noticed panels had replaced some of the lock festooned fences due to vandalism. Other bridges, like along the Canal St. Martin are also getting the love lock treatment. Lovers everywhere. For more info check out http://noworriesparis.com//?s=pont+des+arts&search=Go for recent photos.
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