Paris has the most intimate relations with its river than any other comparable city in Europe. Not only do lovers walk the streets along the Seine, but in season when the water does not rise as high, couples can descend many a staircase to the cobblestone walks at the riverside. For those who prefer the setting without the exertion, tour boats ply the Seine on a daily basis, usually starting from the Square du Vert Galant.
Update June 1, 2015: According to the French newspaper Le Monde, the city of Paris has finally decided to do away with the “love-locks” on its bridges. Starting today, June 1, the footbridge Pont des Arts in Paris will be closed for one week while nearly a million love-locks, weighing 45 tons, are removed. Temporary wooden panels (with paintings by various artists) will be installed instead of the current wire-mesh fences on the sides of the bridge. Next autumn, these will be replaced by unbreakable glass panels.
In February 2011 I wrote my first Local Customs tip on the love locks. It went like this:
Here's the cheapest way to declare your eternal love for that special person in your life, the one you met this afternoon and are trying to maneuver into bed.
Instead of spending forty Euros on flowers, buy a padlock at Monoprix for five Euros – or, to make a really good impression, get the € 16.50 model from Fichet-Bauche – write or inscribe both your names on it, have a romantic stroll along the Seine on a romantic evening, go out onto one of the romantic pedestrian bridges, look deeply into each other’s eyes, kiss, declare your eternal love in whatever common language you might have, kiss some more, then solemnly snap the lock onto the bridge and throw both keys into the Seine.
Update June 2014: According to French press reports, a 2.4 meter section of the wire mesh fence on the footbridge Pont des Arts collapsed under the weight of the love locks on Sunday afternoon, 8 June 2014 at 5:50 pm. Police said there were no casualties, but the footbridge was immediately evacuated and closed.
Update August 2014: The City of Paris has just started a new website, in French, English and Spanish, called Love Without Locks which explains:
”Paris delights in its lovers,
Who come in numbers so great,
But its bridges are more fragile than their passion
And thousands of padlocks are some weight!”
It also rhymes in French, but not in Spanish. The Spanish page, however, contains the following extra sentence: “¡Nuestros puentes no son tan fuertes como vuestro amor!” (Our bridges are not as strong as your love!)
Anyway, the English version goes on:
"An end to padlocks: through this site, declare your love in pictures and bridges will be spared a heavy heart. Share your photos on social network sites with the hashtag #lovewithoutlocks and they will appear on this social wall to lovers worldwide!"
As of August 15, 2014, there were already 392 photos posted on the new website, some selfies and some not.
According to local press reports, this new website is the first step in a “global plan of action” to rid the city’s bridges of lovelocks. Another step being considered is to replace the current wire mesh fences on the bridges with some other kind of installations that will not permit the attachment of locks.
But they are hoping to solve the problem without resorting to repressive measures such as arresting people or fining them.
Second photo: Love locks on the Pont des Arts, 2011.
In 2010 someone from the Mayor's office was quoted as saying that all these rusty locks were an eyesore and might even endanger the stability of the Pont des Arts, which after all was part of the "national patrimony". So when about two thousand of the love locks disappeared one night in May 2010, the opposition parties promptly blamed the mayor, saying he was trying to control everything in the city, even love. But the mayor denied any responsibility, as did the police, the art museums, the Direction de la Propreté et de l’Eau (D.P.E.) and various other city agencies that might conceivably have been involved.
Update 2013: Although some people in Paris still vociferously blame the city administration under Mayor Bertrand Delanoë for removing all those love locks one night in May 2010, it turns out that the locks were actually removed by an art student of the Ecole des Beaux-Arts (School of Fine Arts), who used them to make a sculpture which was put on display several weeks later. (Click here to see the entire sculpture.)
Actually it's somewhat far-fetched to call the current Pont des Arts a part of the national patrimony, because it is not even thirty years old. It was built in the 1980s to replace an older bridge that collapsed after being rammed by a barge. The new bridge looks very much like the old one except that it was subtly re-designed to harmonize better with the next bridge upstream, the Pont Neuf.
Third photo: Love locks at night on the Pont des Arts. Surprisingly, a few couples have used combination locks, which rather misses the point of the whole thing. If one of the lovers remembered the combination, he or she could simply return and remove the lock. (Not exactly eternal love, is it?)
Fourth photo: In 2012 I noticed that one of the nearby book stalls on the right bank of the Seine was selling small padlocks for 3.50 Euros. Slightly larger sizes were on sale for 4.50 or 6.00 Euros. As of 2013, it wasn’t even necessary to leave the bridge, because this man on the Passerelle Léopold-Sédar-Senghor (formerly Passerelle Solférino) was selling locks right on the bridge. (I forgot to ask the price.)
Fifth photo: Love locks on the Pont de l'Archevêché, 2013.
Pont des Arts, Paris
Léopold-Sédar-Senghor footbridge, Paris
Bicycle tour of Prague, part 2, Czech Republic
Hm... "Sign of undying love" in the mostly romantic city in the world.
"Since the fad took off around two years ago, almost 2,000 padlocks of all shapes, colours and sizes are now locked to the bridges and emblazoned with messages of eternal love".
City was going to remove the pad locks on the Pont des Arts Bridge in May 2010 sometime. Looks as if they didn't end up removing the locks after all.
You will see tonns of pad locks on the bridge near Notre Dame too. But if Paris' municipality wasn't removing the locks on a regular basis, their would be nowhere left to attach a lock...
It's look weird...
Paris is known as a romantic city and the locals like to think that they are the best lovers and know all about romance. (This is their opinion and each person is entitled to their own opinion)
Take a walk aroung the Eiffel tower area, down the tree lined streets and see how romantic this city can be.
Paris is the symbol of light, the capital of romance, the centre of attraction of Europe.
What could be more romantic than a wedding in Paris?
If you are planning to marry in Paris ( just remember: French law requires that before a wedding ceremony takes place in a church in France, you need to have proof of a civil marriage) - you will have a great variety of choises: from the cruise on a river-boat to the hottest restaurants the city has to offer, from elegant private palaces to temples of haute cuisine....
If you are not planning to marry in Paris... oh well... in any case you will meet lots of "Just married" couples from entire world in Paris.
Walking Along the Seine on the left bank we saw these 2 French Law and order types on horseback.With the shining streets and the Parisian buildings in the background it almost looked turn of the century(except for the cars)
Well ooh la la!
I must say, for a single lady, Paris can be absolutely fantastic for the old self-esteem! No matter how awful and monstrous you think you look in comparison to the chic Parisiennes, some guy will ****ALWAYS**** try to chat you up! :-)
One day, I got chatted up 3 times in town. Of course it would be the one day I got sunburnt, had no make--up on, looked like crap with messy hair. :)
Then there was that 60 year old guy who offered me a fine view of the city from the back of his car.
At the same time, like men anywhere, they soon get the message if you're not interested in them. If you do not welcome this kind of attention, then be firm, avoid eye contact and don't look touristy (i.e. looking at maps, speaking a different language in public).
Basically you literally cannot even sit down on a park bench in the city centre without some randy romeo trying it on.
I enjoyed some of the attention, I cannot deny it, but there were other times when I wished they would just go away and "laisse-moi tranquille" :)
this is a phenomenon that has increase over the years, started slowly now there is more than one bridge which is loaded with locks of love. The city is trying to minimize this and there are groups propups against it
The promise of eternal love in the city of Love , Paris. the love locks or cadenas d'amour in French is a happening for sure.
In Paris, this custom began in 2008 on the pont des Arts and spread at the bridge of the Archdiocese as well as bridge passarelle Simone de Beauvoir, in April 2010, reaching about two thousand padlocks attached to the railings of the pont des Arts. It spread as well to the Passerelle Léopold-Sédar-Senghor. The city hall of Paris started a campaign to removed them, but it seems more and more folks were putting them back quicker! Eventually, by June 2014, an entire grid falls on the side of passerelle.
From September 2014, the Mayor of Paris has decided to put an end to the locks of love on the pont des Arts. Two glass guardrails are posed as 'experimental', replacement of the other portions of the bridge being planned in the future.
according to the article in the city main page as much as 700 000 locks were posed in the Paris bridges!!! now the glass panels will be extended to protect these wonderful structures from the fad.
in fact, the city has created a photo page to allow lovers to pose on the bridge instead , here it is in French
French Kissing tips & technics. (Note: from a website)French kisses are kisses in which you also use your
tongues. (That's why you part your lips slightly.)
So, after you've started kissing, the next step
is that either he will slip his tongue into your
mouth or you'll slip yours into his. Don't let your
tongue go limp but move it around his, or playfully
push his tongue out with yours, then let him
push your tongue back into your mouth, and so on. This is a guide to basic kissing, i.e. you learn the basics and get the basics right, then experiment and try different styles and more advanced techniques.
1. Brush your teeth, get a good bath, nicely groomed and clean and fresh, before meeting the other person. There's nothing worse than kissing the rear end of a garbage truck
2. Get into a comfortable position - you can't kiss if your back feels like it's gonna break. Suggestion - Sit side by side on a comfy sofa.
3. Hold your lover , firmly but gently - don't cause pain. Suggestion would be to hold the shoulders, the neck or gently on the side of the face, one side or both sides.
4. Move your faces closer. Don't bump noses. Suggestion would be the guy angle his face slightly so you don't bump noses.
5. Kiss gently, normal closed lips kissing, and close your eyes. Closing your eyes increases the sensations you feel, and also sets the mood.
6. Continue kissing gently. Get comfortable with simple closed lips, lip-to-lip kissing before going anywhere else.
7. If fine till here, tentatively, slowly and lightly draw your tongue across the other person's lips.
8. Chances are from here, if the other person lightly parts her tongue, slowly explore the other person's tongue in a light licking motion.
9. The tongue has a very sensitive surface, which is why tongue to tongue is the essence of french kissing.
10. After you've tried lightly licking the other person's tongue, you can try sucking on it, wrestling with it ( see if you can hold it to the floor of her mouth ) and other things like that.
11. Explore the other areas of the mouth. Especially the roof of the mouth. Lightly lick, or tickle the area with your tongue.
12. Don't bite. whatever you do, don't bite.
13. Don't swing your tongue round and round like a windmill. Explore lightly, don't drill your way through.
14. Breathe through your nose. Breathe through your nose. I say again, breathe through your nose.
15. Follow so far ? You can lightly use your hands too, lightly rubbing the other person. Suggestions, along the waist, along the back, the arms, especially the inside of the arm, the neck, maybe running your fingers through her hair. Again, don't cause pain.
16. Continue kissing.
Neighborhoods not to be confuse with districts(arrondissements). See tip on the 20 districts of Paris in General page. Some romantic walks to think about while in Paris.
Here i will concentrate on the neighborhoods or what is quartiers.
The 80 administrative districts are the finest level of public administration in Paris. Each contains a police station. Each arrondissement has 4 administrative districts. These 80 quarters are distinct both from 121 neighbourhood councils of Paris (more balanced in terms of population) and 18 legislative districts for the election of deputies to the National Assembly.
I like to name them here with the name given to the district as a whole as Parisien calls their places of living.
1er or « du Louvre » has the following neighborhoods with numbers to 80
2e or « de la Bourse »
3e or « du Temple »
4e or « de l'Hôtel-de-Ville »
5e or « du Panthéon »
6e or « du Luxembourg »
7e or « du Palais-Bourbon »
8e or « de l'Élysée »
9e or « de l'Opéra »
10e or « de l'Entrepôt »
11e or « de Popincourt »
12e or « de Reuilly »
13e or « des Gobelins »
14e or « de l'Observatoire »
15e or « de Vaugirard »
16e or « de Passy »
17e or « des Batignolles-Monceaux »
18e or « de la Butte-Montmartre »
19e or « des Buttes-Chaumont »
20e or « de Ménilmontant »
and now a bit of history I like;
Originally, Paris was divided into four parts, from which the name of 'neighbourhoods or quartiers came from'. Before the implementation of the work of king Philippe Auguste, four quarters are clearly identified: île de la Cité and, on the right bank, Saint-Jacques-de-la-Boucherie, la Verrérie, and la Gréve. The left bank is the possession of abbeys. After the construction of the walls of Philippe Auguste, the number of quartiers passes to eight. Add indeed to those that existed in St. Louis: Sainte-Opportune and Saint-Germain - l'Auxerrois on the right bank, Saint-André and Maubert on the left bank. Eight new areas are added to the list with the erection of the wall of Charles V, completed in 1383. Until the end of the 16C, Paris is thus divided into sixteen districts, themselves divided in "tens": Cité, Gréve, the Halles, Maubert, verrérie, Saint-André, Saint-Antoine, Saint-Denis, Saint-Eustache, Saint-Germain-l'Auxerrois, Saint-Gervais, Saint-Honoré, Saint-Jacques-de-la-Boucherie, Saint-Martin, Saint-Avoye, Saint-Opportune.
Neighborhoods of Paris is responsible for administrative tasks, while the police falls under a colonel in quartier. The institution of the colonels of wards will be extended to all French cities by Louis XIV. After the Fronde, the fortifications are destroyed and the Royal administration seeks to limit the Parisian autonomy. This leads to the creation of the lieutenancy of police (edict of March 3, 1667), the reform of the quarteniers (the edict of July 1681 in fact's only honorary offices: 'advisors and quarteniers of the town' and a new breakdown of neighbourhoods (16 according to the judgment of the Council of April 12, 1680, twenty according to January 14, 1702). With four new wards, Paris now has twenty in 1702:
Five on the left bank: Saint-Germain-des-Prés, Luxembourg, Saint-André-des-Arts, Saint-Benoît, place Maubert,.One on the Islands: Cité, Fourteen on the right bank where 80% of the population lived: Palais-Royal, Montmartre, Saint-Denis, Saint-Eustache, Louvre, les Halles, Sainte-Opportune, Saint-Jacques-de-la-Boucherie, Saint-Martin, Saint-Avoye, Gréve, Saint-Antoine, Saint-Paul and the faubourg Saint-Antoine.
These neighborhoods are under the supervision of obedient lieutenant general of police commissioners, which were under their orders two inspectors in each wards (from 1708). The neighborhoods also serve to the perception of certain taxes, capitation, tenth, etc. In April 1789, the city is divided into 60 wards for the elections of the deputies to the estates-General, each former district is divided into 3 or 4 wards; each ward formed in the year a battalion of the National Guard. On May 21, 1790, this number is reduced to 48 sections. In 1795, these 48 sections become officially 48 wards, either four by borough.
The annexation of neighbouring communes on 1 January 1860 creates eight new districts, so 32 neighbourhoods, bringing to 80 the total number of Parisian neighbourhoods.
You have in English some explanation of these wards or neighborhoods no 3 with ideas on walks in the city, very useful to know Paris on foot first.
Lovers are everywhere in Paris. Lots of them are visitors from other countries. Paris brings out the best/worst in folks???