I was admittedly heartbroken last week when Parisian officials announced that they would be removing all of the city’s famous love locks from the well-known Pont des Arts bridge. The tradition of love locks is thought to be inspired by an ancient Chinese custom butpopularized in the early 2000s by the Frederico Moccia book I Want You. The book even inspired a film adaptation, Hovoglia dite. Two lovers seal a padlock to a gate, chain, or — in some cases — a tree and throw away the key. This locks down their love for eternity… or for as long as the lock remains on the bridge.
When visiting the Pont des Arts bridge, I was dejected to learn that the city cut down the locks every 3 years or so to prevent structural damage, but the tradition has grown so popular that the bridge has suffered major damage caused by the approximately 45 tons of locks. Authorities now plan to install Plexiglass panels to prevent tourists from adding more locks.
But there are many other bridges around the world for you to lock you love down upon. And while some are going the way of the Pont des Arts — about two months ago New York’s Department of Transportation began cutting locks off of the Brooklyn Bridge in New York City — others stand tall. For now.
So hurry to one of these places quick: before the tradition dies!
1. Mount Huangshan in Huangshan City, China
2. Malá Strana district in Prague, Czech Republic
Source: Sumner Caughey/Flickr
3. Hohenzollern Bridge in Cologne, Germany
source: Rachel Titiriga/Flickr
4. Ha’penny Bridge in Dublin, Ireland
Source: William Murphy/Flickr
5. Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Italy*
Source: Holland Farkas
(*Note: It is highly frowned upon to hang up new locks on this particular bridge. Many were cut down to prevent structural damage, but you can still find small clusters along the bridge.)
6. Ponte Milvio Bridge in Rome, Italy
Source: James Manners/Flickr
7. Luzhkov Bridge & Vodootvodny Canal in Moscow, Russia
Source: Jason Eppink/Flickr
In Moscow, metal structures were built along side of the Luzhkov Bridge as a place for tourists to place their love locks without damaging the structural integrity of the bridge.
8. Butchers’ Bridge, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Source: Tit Bonač/Flickr
9. N Seoul Tower, Seoul, South Korea
Source: Kate Bum/Flickr
The area surrounding South Korea’s North Seoul Tower is another place where tourists can find “Love Lock trees.”
10. Locks Fountain in Montevideo, Uruguay
Unfortunately, I feel that many of these locations — aside from the ones where separate structures were built — will, understandably, soon be putting an end to the love lock trend if they haven’t already. However, the hopeless romantic in me believes that love finds and way and hopefully these landmarks will follow the “Love Tree” route or find other ways for people to safely express their affection.
Have you visited any of these places and locked down your love? Let us know in the comments below!
Source: Cover Image // Holland Farkas