Famous Love Lock Bridges: The Ponte Vecchio

love lockYou have probably heard of the famous lovelocks on the Pont Des Art Bridge in Paris. Growing more popular in recent years couples have locked their love in padlocks on to this bridge. Once initials have been engraved and the key has been turned the key is thrown into the river to symbolize eternal love.

The history of the lovelocks dates back to WWII in a small Serbian town. A couple named Nada and Relja were madly in love until the war broke out and Relja enlisted. Despite Nada’s faithful commitment to Relja’s return he fell in love with another woman. According to the legend Nada died of heart break and village girls began attaching padlocks to the bridge where the couple used to spend their time. The girls would engrave their name alongside their lover’s and throw away the key with hopes doing so would ensure their love would last forever and that their beloved would not leave them as Relja had left Nada.

Lovelocks have begun appearing on bridges and other public objects around the world! From the Brooklyn Bridge in New York and to even love trees that can better withhold the weight like the one on the Vodootvodny Canal in Moscow or the seven love trees on the terraces of the Seoul Tower in South Korea.

loooovelocksOne of the most well-known lovelock bridges is on the famous Ponte Vecchio Bridge. Firenze has its own legend as to how this tradition started. A locksmith who held shop at the foot of the bridge apparently started the practice as a means to raise revenue and the tradition caught on to lovers everywhere, flocking to the city’s old bridge to help keep their love strong.

Unfortunately the locks have begun to be removed. In Paris, after reaching over 90 metric tons the bridge started to fall apart under the weight. The act is now illegal in Paris as well as on the Ponte Vecchio for damaging the bridge. It is still a sight to see the remaining locks. Lock bridges can be found all over Italy from the Ponte Milvio in Rome to hikes along the water in Cinque Terre. Even if unable to lock your own love, it is hard to not be inspired by the romantic history at these locations. DSC02883What romantic traditions have you heard of?

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