This "Pont Vieux" is old, and proud to be !
The bridge is 210 metres long, and dates back from the Middle Ages (1359). It was during a very long time the unique link between the two parts of Carcassonne. There was an arch in the middle of the bridge, symbolizing the union (and often rivalry) between these two parts. It does not exist anymore, but there is a cross with a sculpture of Christ, unfortunately very damaged.
The Old Bridge is certainly one of the most romantic places of Carcassonne. Especially since it became a pedestrian zone !
You can walk around there as long as you want, even lie at the middle of it and sunbathe !
From the bridge you will enjoy an incredible nice view on the Cité which spreads out on 1 km in front of your eyes.
From north to south, you see the Gallo-Roman ramparts, the Counts' Castle, the Tower of the Inquisition, the Tower of Justice, the Bishop's Tower, the roofs of St Nazaire Basilica, and many other towers whose names we have forgotten !!
We advice you to go and have a walk on the bridge at night, when the Cité and its walls are illuminated. When there is mist, the spectacle is even more impressive. The lights spread around the Cité, which is completely surrounded by clouds and fog, giving the fortress an unreal aspect... gold, orange, pink... You feel like in a fairy tale !!! Didn't we tell you this is a romantic place ?
And this is also the ideal place to take you nicest pictures "me in Carcassonne", or "me in front of the Cité".
From the Pont Vieux you can also admire many other things than the Cité : To the north you can perfectly see the Black Mountain and the huge windmills at Sallèles-Limousis (the highest in France) 18 km from Carcassonne.
To the south, you see the smooth reliefs of the Corbières and the sharp summits of the Pyrenees.
Just at the end of the bridge and at the foot of the Cité, there is a big building hidden behind plane trees. This is the former Royal Factory of Sheets, which was built in the 18th century.
Carcassonne was once a very active city, thanks to its textile industry which made its wealth and fame. The district at the foot of the Cité (la Trivalle) sheltered for a long time many workshops, workers and weavers.