The Most Beautiful Bridges in Paris

Almost 40 bridges cross the river Seine in Paris: here are the top five. From the oldest to the most futuristic ones.

Paris is home to 37 bridges: stone, wood, metal, modern, old, and everything in between. In our not-so-modest opinion as serial tourists, one of the best ways to enjoy the bridges is actually by passing underneath them on a river cruise. That way you get to enjoy their beautiful outline and decorations: you can get yours here .

Following, you can find the most visually striking and important bridges in Paris.

Pont Alexandre III

Pont Alexandre III - bridges of Paris
Author: Zairon. Licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Pont Alexandre III, named so after Russian ruler Tsar Alexander III, is often referred to as the most beautiful bridge in the world, and it definitely is a marvel to look at.

Built between 1896 and 1900, inaugurated on the occasion of the Exposition Universelle (World Exhibition), the bridge is a superb example of Beaux-Arts style. It presents elegantly detailed decorations, including Art Nouveau lamps, gilded winged horses, cherubs, and garlands.

Pont Alexandre III is located between Les Invalides complex and the Grand and Petit Palais, and measures 160 m (525 feet).

Pont Neuf

Pont Neuf - bridges of Paris
Author: Sumit Surai. Licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Pont Neuf, whose name can mean both “nine” and “new” is, ironically, the oldest standing bridge in Paris. It was the first stone bridge in the city, and its construction started in 1578. At the time, the techniques and its shape justified the use of the word “new”.

The stone of the bridge, which gives it its characteristic strong appearance, is decorated with more than 300 sculpted masks.

Pont Neuf connects the two banks of the river Seine at the western part of Île de la Cité, allowing access to Place Dauphine in the centre. The bridge is 238 m long (780 feet).

Pont de Bir-Hakeim

Pont de Bir-Hakeim - bridges of Paris
Author: DXR. Licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

The Pont de Bir-Hakeim, formerly known as Pont de Passy, is a rather modern-looking arch bridge made of steel. The Bir-Hakeim has a foot and car path, as well as a metro line.

Its fame is partly due to it having been the backdrop of many films, including Last Tango in Paris and Inception . But even for non-film fans, the bridge has its charm: it is unexpectedly elegant and slender and it offers a beautiful view over the Eiffel Tower.

The bridge is 237 m (777 feet) long and connects the 15th and 16th arrondissements of Paris.

Pont des Arts

Pont des Arts - bridges of Paris
Author: DXR. Licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Pont des Arts is one of the most well-known bridges in Paris. It isn’t for its length or ancient history, but rather because of its romantic reputation as the Love Lock Bridge.

Up until 2015, hundreds of couples would add engraved locks onto the railings at the sides of the bridge. The locks had to be removed because their weight was damaging the bridge and to prevent further romantic-enthusiasm-induced injury, the sides of the bridge were lined with glass panelling.

Still, the bridge really is quite a romantic place, with its wooden footpath and a lovely view of the Seine waters all around.

The Arts Bridge is 155 m long (180 feet), and connects the Louvre Museum with the Institut de France.

Pont de la Tournelle

Pont de la Tournelle - bridges of Paris
Author: Chris Winters. Licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Pont de la Tournelle is one of the most symbolically important bridges in Paris since it has a statue of its patron saint, Sainte Geneviève built by world-renowned artist Paul Landowski.

The statue depicts Geneviève as protecting a small child, who represents the city of Paris itself. The legend referenced here sees Geneviève as the one who convinced Parisians to fight for their city when the Huns were marching towards it.

In its 122 m (400 feet), Pont de la Tournelle connects Île Saint-Louis with the left bank of the Seine, and has a view of the nearby Notre-Dame Cathedral.

As mentioned, if you want to do yourself a favour and enjoy these bridges (and many others) the best way possible, you have to go on a river cruise on the Seine.

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The Most Beautiful Bridges in Paris