On July 8, 2023 kayaks and sailboats were gliding on the Seine. About 25 Parisians, including city hall employees, were diving in and swimming between the Pont Sully and the Pont Marie bridges. Mayor Anne Hidalgo gave the signal. With this move, she is officially promoting Seine swimming for the Paris Olympics 2024. The Seine will then reopen to the public in 2025. The Seine has been closed to swimming since 1923. Mayor Jacques Chirac optimistically predicted cleaning up the Seine starting in 1988. It has taken three decades to get started.
Sunday, walking along the Quai de Béthune (Bras de Marie) and below the Quai des Célestins, swimmers in bathing suits, caps and goggles gathered next to the dock for the opening day of Paris Plages (Paris Beach) July 8. The mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, walked down the ramp on the quai, greeted the swimmers, chatted and sounded the starting alarm. The swimmers dove in and swam toward the Pont Marie bridge and back.
The three locations planned for the public in 2025 are Bercy (13th arrondissement), across from the Bibliotheque Nationale, the Bras de Marie, where Mayor Hidalgo stood on July 8 (4th arrondissement), and the Port de Grenelle across from the Île aux Cygnes (15th arrondissement).
Nautical activities are available for the public each Sunday between July 8 and September 3, 2023. Here are 20 more reasons to visit and enjoy Paris Plages.