PARIS October 14 2014

Within Paris there are 37 bridges over the Seine River, many with interesting architectural features and most with an interesting history. The bulk of these are in the central tourism area between the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame Cathedral, one of the most photogenic areas of Paris, likely one of the most photogenic cities in the world!

Unlike in London, where the bridges are so long, you may actually find yourself using the ones in Paris, as the river isn't so wide, and because the bridges are so handy to where you are and where you are going to want to go.

You can also take a boat ride on the Seine, and it's quite romantic. There are a few different boat lines serving the river. You can enjoy a meal or a drink. The one I took was at night, and many of the sites were well lit for passengers' enjoyment; a hostess gave a commentary over a microphone. The boat trip I took I caught below Pont Neuf, and it circled the Isle St. Louis, then went all the way to the Eiffel tower, turned around just beyond that, circled the Isle St. Louis once more and returned me to the Pont Neuf.

The Petit Pont (Little Bridge) is a sentimental favorite of mine because it was just around the corner from my hotel on the rue de la Huchette and led me to the place I would usually begin my days in Paris: the cathedral Notre Dame. This bridge, dating from 1853, is in the same spot where the first bridges across the Seine were placed.

Pont Neuf (the New Bridge) is a misnomer, for it is the oldest bridge over the Seine in Paris, dating back to 1607. Beneath it lies the beautiful and romantic Square du Vert-Galant, a terrific picnic spot, and a place which, at anytime, some of the old-timers may be seen fishing. The bastions (rounded bow areas) of the bridge give it its charm and uniqueness.

Pont Alexandre III (named for Tsar Alexander of Russia) is by far the most ornate bridge in Paris, with its gilt, cherubs and lamps. It was to represent French-Russian friendship. It leads majestically to the Invalides, where Napoleon is entombed.

The Pont des Arts only dates back to the 1980s, but it's worth a look. It links the Louvre to the Institute de France. It's a pedestrian-only bridge, so it makes a great spot for a picnic, what with its beautiful view of the Square du vert Galant and up and down the river. Artists may have their works on hand for you to admire or disparage.

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Photos- Nipa Gandhi