Bucket List Brainstorm #1: Add A Love Lock to a Bridge in Paris

Bucket List Brainstorm is a new series on Trip Logic where I share amazing travel activities for bucket list builders looking for ideas.

photo credit: ynetbot via photopin cc
original photo credit: ynetbot via photopin cc

I’m not terribly romantic (I do love a good chick flick though – don’t judge).  But wowza when I first saw a picture of the Pont de l’Archevêché Bridge in Paris I was done for. This bucket list idea is for true romantics, and even better suited for those of us who don’t outwardly profess our need for a bit of fairy tale story in our lives.

What is Love Lock Bridge?

No one is quite sure where the tradition of the love lock originated but love lock bridges have sprung up in cities around the world.

Lovers write their names or initials on a lock, attach it to a bridge, and throw the key into the water below when they are done.  The superstitious believe that the only way to break apart the love that was sealed with a love lock is to open it with the key that locked it.

Hohenzollern padlocks

photo credit: Darcy Moore via photopin cc
photo credit: Darcy Moore via photopin cc
photo credit: Craig Damlo via photopin cc
photo credit: Craig Damlo via photopin cc

Quick Facts About This Bucket List Idea:

Best for: True romantics, lock picks in training, and people who want to leave their mark on the world

Difficulty Level: If you can get to one of the lock bridges it’s a cinch!

Where to do it: Paris is arguably the most romantic place to add a love lock – it is known as the city of love ya know. Other good destinations include Cologne (Germany) and Rome.  Can’t get to any of these? Be a trend setter and start a love lock bridge in your own city.

Supplies needed: A padlock with a key (combo locks just won’t cut it! I’m rather partial to this antique reproduction heart padlock with skeleton keys – if your gonna do it, do it right!

Where are the most well known Love Lock Bridges?

photo credit: killerturnip via photopin cc
photo credit: killerturnip via photopin cc

Two bridges in Paris, the Pont de l’Archevêché and the Pont des Arts, are probably the most well known love lock bridges.

The Ponte Milvio bridge in Rome is also a popular love lock bridge.  Some people believe the trend started here, inspired by the 2006 novel, I Want You
, by Federico Moccia. The locks have been removed by the government several times, but keep reappearing.

photo credit: aWee via photopin cc
photo credit: aWee via photopin cc

Others believe the tradition started in the Huangshan Mountains of China.  The legend goes that two lovers, threw themselves from the mountain rather than be seperated by an arranged marriage and disapproving families.  Today lovers climb to a bridge in the mountains, add a lock to it’s chains and throw the key down into the valley below.

The  Hohenzollernbruecke bridge in Cologne, Germany is also a big draw for romantics.  It has literally thousands of love locks  on it.


Not everything is rosy when it comes to love locks.  Some people think they are an eyesore while others are more concerned with the effect they have on the bridges themselves.

Even more interesting is the idea that they represent a negative type of love.  some people dislike them because they see the locks as symbolizing a possessive type of love rather than a selfless one.

love padlocks

photo credit: jcolman via photopin cc
photo credit: jcolman via photopin cc

Happily Ever After

I love the idea of making a romantic gesture, of announcing your love to the big wide world, of putting a little faith in the goodness of what you have.  Love lock bridges are like a sparkle of beauty and magic and a symbol of our desire to believe in the happily ever after. They remind me that happiness should be shared and love is worth celebrating. So go get that padlock and do a little love celebrating and happiness sharing why don’t you?

Can’t Make it to a Bridge?

There is still hope for you! You can lock up your love virtually, Master Lock made a website where you can pick a lock, pick a bridge and send a love lock to your sweetie.

So have you done it? Have you added a love lock to a bridge?  Which bridge did you put your lock on?  If you’d like to share your love lock story shoot me contact me – I’d love to share it.

3 thoughts on “Bucket List Brainstorm #1: Add A Love Lock to a Bridge in Paris

  1. I actually came across my first love-lock bridge in Prague and I instantly fell inlove with the concept! I’m thinking of maybe popping over to the Masterlock website and see their selection. I’m no big romance gal, but I wouldn’t mind putting one up in Paris this summer

  2. good place for couple to meet. This is the brigde to the north of Notre Dame across the Seine. Everyone puts a lock on the bridge with the names of someone or those they love. It is a truly moving site and with the stunning Notre Dame Cathedral as the backdrop, it is an amazing photo opportunity.

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