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Learn all about the landmarks that make Paris what it really is with our Paris ABC section! Today’s alphabetical tour will take you on a walk over the Parisian bridges.     

They say the Seine is the soul of Paris. This is why a visit to the city would be incomplete without a promenade along its famed bridges. Not to mention that often the spectacular views seen from their spans are as rewarding as the bridges themselves. So, go on, bridge along!

Pont Alexander III

Pont Alexander III

The meaning:   “pont” =   bridge”

The history:  They’ve been depicted in novels, they’ve been painted in pictures, they’ve been captured in movies…  And now you can walk on them! 37 bridges cross over the river Seine and many of them are worth taking a stroll on!

Pont Alexander III

Not to be missed:  Pont Alexander III, the king of all bridges, is regarded by many as the most extravagant and beautiful in Paris.  Built for the 1900 World Fair as a symbol of friendship between Russia and France, it was named in honour of the Russian tsar, Alexander the Third.  With its exuberant Art Nouveau architecture, glorious gilt lanterns and sculptures of sea monsters, winged horses and nymphs, a walk over this bridge is like a flip through a dictionary of mythological creatures. Feast on a stroll over this incredible piece of architecture, which has never ceased to enchant the passerby and the aesthete alike!

Alexander III Paris bridge

For “the full HD experience” of Parisian bridges, admire their reflections not only in the water, but in some pieces of art, too!

The song:  Hop in the time-machine to enjoy the otherworldly melody of the 1914 popular song “Under the bridges of Paris” (“Sous les ponts de Paris”)!

Alexander III bridge horse

Pont Alexander III detail

The movie: It’s night on a bridge in Paris… that’s the thrilling beginning of the unconventional love story in the movie “The girl on the bridge” (“La Fille sur le pont”). Starring: (the footbridge) Passerelle Debilly & (the actress) Vanessa Paradis.

La fille sur le pont

The poster of the movie

The poem: This is how Baudelaire saw the morning twilight from his window at 17, quai d’Anjou, meters away from Pont Marie:  “The shivering dawn, in her pink and green dress / Advanced slowly over the deserted Seine…”, “Morning Twilight” / (“L’aurore grelottante en robe rose et verte / S’avançait lentement sur la Seine déserte…”), “Le crépuscule de matin” 

Poetry Charles Baudelaire

The first page of Baudelaire’s book (with his handwriting)

And to end up on a light note, here’s an entertaining fact for you to ponder on:

The oldest bridge in Paris is now called New Bridge (Pont Neuf). Go figure!

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