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Pont Neuf

Built to ease traffic congestion in the early 17th century, this iconic five-arch bridge is Paris' oldest bridge.

TravelCurious Tip

Walk along the bridge at sunset, with the views of Notre Dame and the Eiffel Tower, and that’s when you’ll fall for Paris

Pont Neuf spans the river Seine in Paris, and is the oldest standing bridge to do so. It has stood there since the start of the 17th century. It is constructed as a series of short arch bridges and that Roman-inspired design has stood the test of time.


Decorating the sides of the bridge are 381 stone masks, or mascarons, which depict the heads of various figures from ancient mythology, as well as satyrs and sylvains. When the bridge underwent reconstruction in the 19th century the mascarons were replaced with replicas, but they are nonetheless impressive for it.


Break Pont

Where the bridge crosses the Île de la Cité stands a bronze statue of King Henry IV, commissioned by his widow and Regent of France, Marie de Medici. Pont Neuf was one of his first projects when he took the throne after a period of war and uncertainty in France. He wanted to make a statement and literally get Paris moving again.


The king allegedly impressed workers when he visited the construction by leaping over the vast gaps between the pillars of the unfinished bridge. The statue was toppled during the French Revolution, but subsequently reformed using the melted bronze from statues of Louis Charles Antoine Desaix, a general for the French Republic, and of Napoleon. How’s that for symbolism.


The Heart of Paris

Historically, Ponte Neuf was considered the unlikely heart of Paris, somewhere you could see its the true character. Czar Peter the Great came to study French civilisation and declared that he found nothing more curious in Paris than the Ponte Neuf. It was full of vendors hawking oysters, cakes, oranges, coffee, dogs, wooden legs, glass eyes and false teeth. Singers would trill bawdy rhymes about the royal and the rich and sometimes end up in prison for their troubles. It’s a little less rowdy these days, but no less worth the visit.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in Paris
La Conciergerie
Once a royal residence, the Conciergerie became a prison during the French revolution, a notable prisoner being Marie-Antoinette.
Square du Vert-Galant
A beautiful little park, the subject of many photographs and paintings, occupying the western tip of Île de la Cité.
Place-Dauphine
One of the prettiest, most peaceful locations in Paris, the square is a hot-spot for families, dog walkers and petanque players.
Rue de Rivoli
One of the most famous streets in Paris, famed for its commercialism.
'Liberty leading the people'
Is a painting by Eugène Delacroix commemorating the July Revolution of 1830, which toppled King Charles X of France.
Egypitan Wing at the Louvre
Counted as one of the world’s largest such collections, it includes more than 50,000 pieces that give a detailed overview of Egyptian life and customs from the earliest days of Ancient Egypt.

Related Tours

Private Paris: Île de la Cité, Latin Quarter and River Cruise
This tour acts as the perfect introduction to Paris' history, culture and two of its most famous neighbourhoods.

  • Begin by learning the history of the iconic Notre Dame.
  • See Paris in all its wonderful different forms: from medieval  Île de la Cité to the vibrant, artsy hub of the Latin Quarter.
  • Enjoy a one hour panoramic River Cruise on the Seine, with great views of the Louvre and Eiffel Tower
Begin the walking portion of your tour at the famous Île de la Cité, once known as Lutetia, is the oldest settlement in Paris, and boasts more than its fair share of Paris sights such as the Pont Neuf, the Palais de Justice and Notre Dame cathedral of course. 

After exploring the island, walk over the famous ‘love locks bridge’ into the Latin Quarter. Pay visits to historical bookshops, once frequented by the likes of Hemingway and Orwell, and explore an area that is renowned for being the starting point of the May 68' Revolution as well as the home of French intellectual thought.

Next, take in the amazing sights on a cruise down the Seine to the Eiffel Tower. Along the cruise, you will see the Louvre Museum, Orsay Museum, and the Eiffel Tower to name just a few sights! Your one hour cruise ends back in centrally located Paris, on Île de la Cité.

Please note that this tour is composed of a 2-hour private walking tour followed by a 1-hour river cruise with onboard commentary. Your tour guide will not accompany you on the cruise. You can choose to take the cruise at the end of the tour or later during your stay. The river cruise arrives at the foot of the Eiffel Tower but does not allow passengers to disembark at the Eiffel Tower. You will start and end your cruise in Central Paris.
Paris by Night: Seine Cruise and Private Walking Tour
Experience the majesty of the City of Lights with an evening walk through Paris' most romantic and scenic areas –medieval Île de la Cité and the Latin Quarter. Take a relaxing cruise ride along the Seine with fine photo opportunities to crop up on the way!

  • Experience the wonders of Paris at night with your own private local guide.
  • Visit the city's most beautiful and romantic neighbourhoods.
  • See Paris in all its wonderful different guises: from medieval  Île de la Cité to the vibrant, artsy hub of the Latin Quarter.
  • Travel down the Seine by river cruise and see the Eiffel Tower from the river at night.
  • Your River cruise tickets can be used after this tour or any other evening during your stay!

You will begin your walking tour on Île de la Cité where you find the famous Notre Dame, the perfect gothic attraction for a visit late in the day. 

Then pass over the famous ‘love locks bridge’ and explore the vibrant Latin Quarter. Pay visits to a late-night bookshop, once frequented by the likes of Hemingway and Orwell, and explore a buzzing area that is renowned for being the starting point of the May 68' Revolution as well as the home of French intellectual thought.  Plenty of quirky bars, jazz clubs and cool backstreets to explore in the moonlight!

End your tour on the Pont Neuf and board a cruise that will whisk you along the Seine, with all of its scenic points of interest on display, including the Eiffel Tower light up in the night!

Please note that this tour is composed of a 2 hour private walking tour followed by a 1 hour river cruise with on board commentary. Your tour guide will not accompany you on the cruise. You can choose to take the cruise at the end of the tour or later during your stay. Please note that the river cruise arrives at the foot of the Eiffel Tower but does not allow passengers to disembark at the Eiffel Tower. You will start and end your cruise in Central Paris.
Private: Paris Highlights Walking tour & River Cruise
Enjoy a three-hour private walking tour of Paris, and explore the highlights of the French capital, finishing with a river cruise of the idyllic Seine. On your private tour, you will: 

  • Meet your guide by the famed Sacré-Cœur church and spectacular viewpoint over Paris.
  • See the best of Paris from Montmartre to Notre Dame, including the Moulin Rouge, the Centre Pompidou, and Île de la Cité.
  • Visit Le Marais neighbourhood, Hotel de Ville, Palais de Justice de Paris (Conciergerie), Place Dauphine and the Pont Neuf.
  • Travel like a local – your guide will teach you all the tricks to taking the Paris Metro.
  • Enjoy complimentary river cruise tickets, which you can use at the end of your tour or even the next day. 

Start your tour immersed in one of the city’s most intriguing and bohemian neighbourhoods – an enclave of famous painters and artists, Montmartre. Then hop aboard the iconic Metro, where your guide will teach you all the tips and tricks for navigating it during your stay in Paris. 

Marvel at the famous Centre Pompidou building, described by its architect Renzo Piano as a "huge spaceship made of glass", and stroll through Le Marais neighbourhood, once the city's Jewish quarter, the area is today filled with hip boutiques, galleries, and cafes. 

Visit one of the two remaining natural islands in the Seine, the Île de la Cité, which is considered the historic heart of Paris. The medieval city of Paris was refounded here with magnificent Sainte-Chapelle and the former prison, the Conciergerie. While on Île de la Cité, you will have time to walk around the hauntingly beautiful Notre-Dame de Paris Cathedral, as she undergoes a renovation from the 2019 fire. 

Your tour finishes at Pont Neuf, where your guide will give you tickets to join a one hour river cruise that will take you past the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower. These tickets can be used any time, any day during your stay in Paris. 
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