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The Traveller's Magazine
  •   2 min read

Parisian lovers were left a little baffled this week finding that their love padlocks had been cut off from the Pont des Arts, one of the city’s most romantic spots, thus bringing an end to a traveller’s tradition and one of the city’s unique sights.

Paris is the city of love. It has long been deemed one of the most romantic cities in the world and the most romantic spot? The Pont des Arts of course! A long-standing tradition of star-crossed lovers travelling to Paris is to lock a padlock to the bridge and toss the key into the Seine below, signifying their love forever. Parisian lovers found to their surprise however that all of the lover’s padlock had been cut off during the night from the famous Pont des Arts.

The slowly deteriorating 19th century bridge is in need of restoration and the love locks were the first to go, a decision made by the city council. These symbols of love have been collecting for years but have not disappeared forever. Within a few days the love locks have started to reappear, a few new and shiny padlocks have already been left by newly arrived lovers since the clean-up.

Love padlocks are a long-standing travel tradition for couples and lovers on holidays around the world. Many travel to romantic spots, bridges or fences, leaving their lock and throwing away the key in a nearby river or lake. The first locks started appearing in the 1980s in Hungary and the tradition caught on in cities around the world like Moscow, Riga, Florence, Seville and yes, Paris, believed by many as the most romantic city in the world.

Have you ever left a love lock somewhere? What do you think about leaving your mark in a city while travelling?

Image source: powazny / flickr cc


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6 responses to “One travel tradition is cut in Paris this week

  1. Definitely something more couples should be aware of when they're visiting Paris. This is a really cool tradition and I'm proud my city keeps it alive!

  2. I think you're right about Pécs being the first place for this to start, I think it's cool to see around cities worldwide, soon to be a universal sign for travelling lovers!

    Coralie: I think its way cute too!

  3. There is a very typical site in Pécs (HU), apparently one of the first places where people started the padlock tradition.
    Some friends of mine, have also left a padlock in a famous bar in Budapest, and threw the keys into the Danube, i have never done it myself though…

  4. I had no idea about this padlock thing in Paris, it's very cute ! I saw them in Deak ter in Budapest and thought it was an artwork 🙂

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