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9 French Bridges

Well known for its architecture, France boasts some amazing bridges, here we've picked 9 of our favourites...

Millau Viaduct

Millau Viaduct

If you drove to the south of France in the 1990s, you probably spent hours stuck in traffic in the centre of Millau. After years of discussion, a new route was proposed that bypassed the town and would require the construction of the new 'Millau Viaduc.'

Enter Sir Norman Foster & Dr Michel Virlogeux, the architect & structural engineer tasked with designing & constructing what would become the tallest bridge in the world. In 2017 the bridge carried over 5 million vehicles for the first time since it opened in 2004.

  • Construction started: 16 October 2001
  • Opened: 16 December 2004
  • Material: Concrete, steel
  • Location: Millau, Aveyron
  • Length :2460m
  • Height: 343m
  • Worth knowing: There is a service area at the northern end of the bridge with a visitor centre.

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Best Campsites for the Millau Viaduct

Huttopia Millau is just 500 m. from the lively market town of Millau which lies in the valley below the imposing Millau suspension bridge. There...

Millau Plage is located on the banks of the Tarn river, 3 km. from the interesting town of Millau, and with good access to the...

Run by a welcoming French couple, this site is situated on the banks of the Tarn, across the river from Millau. Of medium size, the...

Camping Saint-Lambert is located at the entrance of the Gorges du Tarn, between the Grands Causses and the Cévennes, and 2.5 km. from the centre...

Camping Saint Martin is a 2-hectare flat site that will allow you to discover all the treasures of the Gorges du Tarn and the...

Pont d'Avignon

Pont d'Avignon

Also known as Pont Saint-Bénézet, the Pont d'Avignon is one of the most photographed bridges in France.

Originally spanning the Rhone, the current bridge fell into disrepair during the 17th century, with only 4 of the original 22 arches remaining in place today.

The bridge features the Chapel of St Nicholas, where the body of St Bénézet was originally interred and was made famous in the 15th century in the song 'Sur le Pont d'Avignon'

  • Constructed: 1234
  • Closed: Approx. 1644
  • Material: Stone
  • Location: Avignon, Provence
  • Original Length: 900m
  • Current Length: 120m
  • Height: 25m

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Best Campsites for Pont Saint-Bénézet

Camping Sandaya Ile des Papes is a large, open, and well-equipped site. Avignon and its palace and museums are 8 km. away. The site has...

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Pont d’Avignon is on the Ile de la Barthelasse in the centre of the river, within walking distance of the town centre, via the bridge...

A well run municipal site just 1 km. from the interesting old town of Villeneuve-lez-Avignon and only 4 km. from the historic walled town of...

Garabit Viaduct

Garabit Viaduct

Instantly recognisable as the work of Gustave Eiffel, the Garabit Viaduct crosses the River Truyère on the rail route between Marvejols and Neussargues.

At the time of construction, it was the world's highest bridge at 124 meters.

Unusually there was no tender process for the construction, with the project going straight to Eiffel based on his work on the similar Maria Pia Bridge in Porto.

  • Constructed: 1882 to 1884
  • Opened: 1885
  • Material: Wrought iron
  • Location: Ruynes-en-Margeride, Cantal
  • Length: 565m
  • Height: 124m
  • Worth knowing: The bridge featured in the 1976 film 'The Cassandra Crossing.'

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Best Campsites for the Garabit Viaduct

With views across the Auvergne countryside, this pleasant site on the edge of a small traditional French village is a comfortable and convenient break in...

This is a very steeply terraced, family run site situated in the heart of the Gorges de la Truyère. Of the 116 pitches, only ...

Fades Viaduct

Fades Viaduct

Still in the top 20 tallest railway bridges in the world, at the time of construction, the Fades Viaduct was the world's tallest in every category.

Built to complete the Tulle-Clermont and Montluçon-Gannat railway, until its recent closure, trains ran across the Sioule River on a steel truss platform on top of quarried granite piers.

  • Constructed: 1901 to 1909
  • Opened: 10 October 1909
  • Material: Granite, steel
  • Location: Les Ancizes-Comps, Puy-de-Dôme
  • Length: 470m
  • Height: 132m

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Best Campsites for the Fades Viaduct

Ideally situated within walking distance of the floral spa town of Châtelguyon, this site is in the interesting and picturesque region of the Auvergne and...

Situated in the lush green heart of France Camping Les Suchères is an intimate family site which has 35 spacious grass pitches with 6amp hook-up...

Briare Aqueduct

Briare Aqueduct

Allowing the Canal latéral à la Loire to cross the Loire river, the Pont-canal de Briare only lost its title of the world's longest aqueduct when the Magdeburg Water Bridge opened in 2003.

Gustave Eiffel had a hand in the construction, producing the fourteen masonry piers. In exceptionally cold weather, the 2.2-meter-deep trough can be drained into the Loire below to prevent damage.

  • Constructed: 1890 to 1896
  • Opened: 16 September 1896
  • Material: Masonry piers, steel trough
  • Location: Briare, Loiret
  • Length: 662m
  • Width: 6m
  • Worth knowing: The steel channel contains more than 13,000 tonnes of water

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Best Campsites for the Briare Aqueduct

This attractive, high quality site, ideal for families with young children, is in a rural setting and well situated for exploring the less well known...

Les Roulottes des Bords de Loire occupies a prime position within a popular campsite with 170 touring pitches (all with 10A electricity), and other holiday...

This open, attractive, well cared for site lies on a bank of the Loire with views of the town of Gien and its château. It...

La Borde is located in the less well known eastern stretch of the Loire valley, close to the picturesque château town of Gien. Please note...

Pont Neuf

Pont Neuf

We couldn't create a list of our favourite bridges in France without including at least one in Paris. The 2 spans of Le Pont Neuf (one on each side of the Île de la Cité) are the oldest to cross the Seine in Paris.

The name literally means the 'new bridge', which it was at the time of construction; it has remained whilst all the older bridges have been replaced.

  • Constructed: 1578 to 1607
  • Opened: 1607
  • Material: Stone
  • Location: Paris
  • Length: 232m
  • Height: 22m
  • Worth knowing: In 1985, modern artist 'Christo' wrapped the bridge in more than 40,000m2 of fabric.

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Best Campsites for Central Paris

This site on the banks of the Seine, Camping Sandaya Paris Maisons-Laffitte is consistently busy, has multilingual, friendly reception staff and occupies a grassy, tree-covered...

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A busy site and the only one within Paris, set in a wooded area between the Seine and the Bois de Boulogne. The site is...

This site is on flat land beside the River Marne with 450 pitches, 76 of which are occupied by mobile homes and chalets to rent...

Huttopia sites are rather different; when the French owners visited Canada and experienced ‘back to nature’ camping, they were so impressed that they decided to...

Gignac Bridge

Gignac Bridge

Spanning the Hérault River, the Gignac bridge was designated a national monument in 1950.

Described as the 'the most beautiful bridge of the 18th century, traffic over the bridge has been much reduced since the opening of the new Languedoc Bridge on the A750, a couple of hundred meters downstream.

Construction of the bridge was delayed due to the French Revolution before completion in 1810.

  • Constructed: 1776 to 1810
  • Opened: 1810
  • Material: Dressed limestone
  • Location: Gignac, Hérault
  • Length: 175m
  • Height: 20m
  • Worth knowing: The Michelin Green Guide describes it as "The finest 18C bridge in France because of its daring design and the beauty of its architectural lines"

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Best Campsites for the Gignac Bridge

On the shore of Lake Salagou in the heart of the Hérault, Les Vailhés campsite is a real oasis in this unique landscape. Set out...

Les Clairettes is a quiet, all year, family site situated among vines and olive trees in the Hérault countryside, west of Montpellier. It is within...

Pont Valentré

Pont Valentré

The 14th-century Pont Valentré took 70 years to construct. Legend has it that construction took so long the foreman signed a pact with the devil to complete the job.

Designed to be its own fortress, the 3 defensive towers never actually saw combat. A likeness of the bridge has been adopted by the town of Cahors as the city emblem.

The nearby pumping station houses a museum detailing the history of the bridge.

  • Constructed: 1308 to 1378
  • Opened: 1350
  • Material: Stone
  • Location: Cahors, Lot
  • Length: 138m
  • Height: 40m (Tower height)
  • Worth knowing: Restoration was performed between 1867 and 1879 by the architect and head of the historic monuments of France, Paul Gout.

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Best Campsites for Pont Valentré

This clean and well run site is owned by a young, English speaking, French couple keen to improve the facilities and ambiance. It is only...

Set in the west of the Lot department, this site is located on a wooded hill about 16 km. from the large town of Cahors...

Run by an enthusiastic young Dutch couple, Camping des Arcades is situated in the hilly surroundings of the Lot Valley. There are 80 level, grass...

This site is set in four hectares of mature oak woodland within the Parc Naturel Régional des Causses de Quercy with stunning natural scenery and...

Pont du Gard

Pont du Gard

The 3rd most visited attraction in France (after the Eiffel Tower & Mont St Michel), this Roman aqueduct consists of 3 tiers crossing the Gardon River. Originally built to carry water along the 50km long Nîmes aqueduct.

Until UNESCO listed the bridge as a world heritage site in 1985, you could still drive across the lower tier.

  • Constructed: 40-60AD Approx.
  • Material: Limestone
  • Location: Vers-Pont-du-Gard, Gard
  • Length: 275m
  • Height: 49m

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Best Campsites for Pont du Gard

Probably the main attraction in the Gardon area of France is the Pont-du-Gard, an amazing Roman aqueduct built around 50 AD. The site, run by...

Owned by the group FranceLoc, this site is well positioned for visiting the Pont du Gard, Nîmes and Uzès, famed for their Roman connections. The...

The campsite LE BARRALET is located in Collias in Gard, in Occitanie, a guaranteed feast for the eyes, since Occitanie has so many rich and...

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