26.8.09

Pont-du-Gard


Before leaving the south, a short visit to Pont-du-Gard, an aqueduct built by the Romans, during the early or middle of the 1st century. It’s part of a total aqueduct system bringing water from close to Uzez to Nîmes (Nemausus during Roman times), totally some 50 km (31 miles) – not going quite as straight as indicated on the map. It had a for those days heavy capacity of some 20.000 cubic meters (5 million gallons) a day.


The Pont-du-Gard crosses the small river Gardon, affluent to the Rhône River, which is beautiful and good for bathing and canoeing etc...
It is believed that it took some three years to build Pont-du-Gard, involving maybe 1000 workers. The heavy stones, several tons each, were made to fit perfectly together without use of mortar.

The real aqueduct part is on the third level – followed by a tunnel on the south bank. You can now make a guided tour. During my first visit here some 40 years ago together with my future wife, we could walk freely everywhere, including on the stones covering the aqueduct.

To the lower level, used as bridge for horses and pedestrians, was added a real road bridge in 1743. You can see some “tagging” from the 18th and 19th century. This bridge was open for traffic until a few years ago, when the whole area became pedestrian, got a museum etc.

The Pont-du-Gard is part of UNESCO’s list of World Heritage sites since 1985.

When we visited together with grandkids, it was a hot day, including quite a bit of climbing to get the best views. It was really nice to make a lunch break under the linden-trees.

42 comments:

James said...

Great pictures Peter. This is a place I hope to visit someday. It's amazing that it is so old and so well built.

Wania said...

Belles photos, Peter.
J'aime l'architecture ancienne!

Bisous.

Butler and Bagman said...

Beautiful as always...I'm torn between wanting to see Paris and just figuring that in a little while I've have seen everything there is through your eyes.

Karen said...

What a delightful history lesson. You should be a teacher. Wonderful photos and your grandchildren are adorable.

Olivier said...

magnifique le pont du Gard, l'un des plus beau de France. Superbe panorama sur la premiere

lyliane said...

Il est toujours aussi beau, je suis allée le voir quelques temps après toi, en 1978 et me suis baignée dans le Gard. Ce n'est peut être plus autorisé maintenant?

Rakesh Vanamali said...

Mein Gott! Such wonderful pictures, more importantly such wonderful places! Awesome!

hpy said...

Une des rares fois (trois peut-être) que j'ai fait du camping, c'était au bord du Gardon, pas loin du pont! C'était un cadre très agréable.

Cergie said...

AHAHA ! Le pont du Gard ! Je n'ai jamais été hélas à Arles (je pense remédier à cela bientôt grâce à un copain bloggueur) mais je fus menée au pont du Gard par une copine bloggueuse, et j'en ai retenu le superbe olivier.
[Ils sont mignons tes petits touristes au bob. Ils courent vite, ils ne sont pas tombés dans les caillasses ?]
:)

Adam said...

Lovely photos.

You had hot weather on your holiday? I went to England!

SusuPetal said...

It's amazing! And old! A place where history really starts to live!

Ank said...

Hy Peter, great photos! I'm very happy that you've returned!
:) Regarding my travel to Paris, I will contact you for sure! I was going to ask for your phone number and your e-mail address but these days I'm very busy. Anyhow, me and my husbant will arrive in Paris on the 18th of September and we really hope to meet with you there! Please leave me your e-mail so we can speak more!

Maya said...

We went there on the way home. Unfortunately, the day was incredibly hot, so we didn't climb around on it. We may have to go back when it's cooler. Your photos make me want to see more!

Ruth said...

It's spectacular to see how it has been preserved. Rather humbling, no?

alice said...

J'aime bien les ponts, plus que les murs! Et s'ils sont vieux, c'est encore mieux!
Et les petits grimpeurs sont trop mimi...

Virginia said...

I agree, another great history lesson and the photos are wonderful. The cute kiddos were the icing on the cake! Love their hats!!
V

sonia a. mascaro said...

Peter,
I always learn when I come here. I enjoyed your photos so much! Sounds you had a great time with your grandkids.

PS: You are right, I have been visiting São Paulo a few times lately...the caos of the traffic, the unsafe streets...many problems that I lament...

claude said...

Je passe vite fait car pas trop le temps. Je connais, nous l'avons visité ce pont avec mon Chéri. C'est un endroit super chouette, vu d'an bas et vu du pont. merci pour ces belles photos.

arabesque said...

the aqueduct's amazing...just imagine how the romans built it...
i hope i can visit this place someday,hopefully by next year *(crossing fingers)*,but for now, visiting your blog is like being there already. ^-^

from cali said...

Amazing that no mortar was used. What history these stones have witnessed! Thanks for sharing some of it with us.

ParisBreakfasts said...

This is the perfect post for those of us taking a "Stay-cation" this August!
Keep on taking us on your fabulous tours Peter

Cuckoo said...

I love your pictures and love to see your grand kids enjoying. It puts a big wide grin on my face.

:-)

Cezar and Léia said...

Wonderful day!Thanks for sharing!
Léia ;)

Bhavesh Chhatbar said...

I had heard so much about this, but had never a chance to see its photos. Too good, and so nice of you to share :)

Tree Surprise in a Dam Backwater

amatamari© said...

Thanks, a series of photographs
fantastic and interesting!

Peter said...

James:
I hope you can do it! :-)

Wanja:
Merci pour les bisous! :-)

Butler:
You must see with your own eyes, of course! :-)

Peter said...

Karen:
Forget about the teacher part please! (Nothing against teachers.) :-)

0livier:
Beau, c'est sur! :-)

Lyliane:
Si, si! :-)

Peter said...

Rakesh:
Mein Gott! :-)

hpy:
Sympa, sans doute! :-)

Cergie:
C'est bien d'avoir des ami(e)s bloggeurs et bloggeuses! :-)

Peter said...

Adam:
You knew what to expect! :-)

SusuPetal:
Indeed! :-)

Ank:
Would be so pleased to meet you. Have sent you email (also available under my profile) and phone numbers in separate mail. :-)

Peter said...

Maya:
I can tell you that it was hot the day we wisited also! :-)

Ruth:
Humbling is the word! :-)

Alice:
Les ponts, les vrais et les virtuels! :-)

Peter said...

Virginia:
The hats were strongly recommended by their mother! :-)

Sonia:
We must never stope learning! :-)

Claude:
Tu as été un peu partout! :-)

Peter said...

Arabesque:
I cross the fingers as well! Passing by Paris I hope! :-)

From cali:
A very precise job ... as the Incas! :-)

ParisBreakfasts:
I will do my best to continue (maybe with some breaks)! :-)

Peter said...

Cuckoo:
Too bad I cannot see your grinning face! :-)

Léia:
A pleasure to share with you! :-)

Bhavesh:
So, it was time! :-)

Peter said...

amatamari:
Happy you liked! :-)

Mo said...

Looks like you had a great holiday

Abraham Lincoln said...

That the aqueduct is still standing says something about Roman construction and the mortar they used. Nice post, Peter.

Pick a Peck of Pixels

Peter said...

Mo:
Indeed! :-)

Abraham:
The mortar they did NOT use! :-)

Harriet said...

The Pont du Gard was truly one of the highlights on the last trip that my husband and I took to France (2007). It's definitely worth a visit if one is in that area!

Your photos are great! Lots of memories for me.

Peter said...

Harriet:
Glad you enjoyed both, the real and the virtual visit! :-)

GMG said...

Wonderful shots! i didn't have lunch there, it was too early... but the site looks excellent!!

♠ ♠ France said...

Tu me fais super plaisir je vois mon pont du Gard que j'adore bien entendu. Un service à te demander comment faire pour que mes photos soient grande merci d'avance

Peter said...

GMG:
It was quite nice, even better than expected! :-)

France:
Je réponds par mail. :-)