Paris 2024 Olympics opening ceremony to take place on the River Seine

The River Seine in Paris
Part of the river route will be ticketed but sections will be free

The 2024 Paris Olympics will break with tradition and hold the opening ceremony along the River Seine, with crowds of more than 600,000 expected.

More than 160 boats with athletes and officials from more than 200 countries will travel almost 6km between Pont d’Austerlitz and Pont d’Iena bridges.

It will be the first ceremony held outside of a stadium at a summer Games.

Organisers said it would be “the most spectacular and accessible ceremony in Olympic history”.

The 2024 Olympics takes place from 26 July to 11 August.

“The Games is a unique, once-in-a lifetime experience,” said Tony Estanguet, head of the organising committee.

“We want people to feel it. [The boats] will pass along the iconic landmarks of Paris – Notre Dame, the Orsay and Louvre museums, the Pont Neuf [Paris’s oldest bridge], the Pont Alexandre III, the Grand Palais, the Eiffel Tower.

“It will be the first time people have free access to the opening ceremony, and not just in a stadium. It will also be a popular event.”

The lower part of the river bank will be ticketed, with free entry to the upper parts, while 80 giant screens will be installed along the route.

The closing ceremony is set to be held at the gardens and fountains of the Trocadero, overlooking the Eiffel Tower.

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