Brooklyn Bridge is world famous and we all know how London Bridge fell down. And then there’s the Golden Gate Bridge. Each of these bridges is iconic in its own right, but there are some other equally stunning bridges around the world, each with a fascinating story to tell. Curious to know where they are located?
1. Living root bridge, Meghalaya, India
A man-made wonder, this bridge is the creation of the Khasi tribe that resides in Meghalaya. The tree trunks form the foundation and the roots grow over them, after being nurtured for several years, to form a bridge across the stream. The knotted web of rubber tree roots resembles a scene from a fantasy film; the work is intricate and sturdy. These bridges are a common sight in Meghalaya, however, the one near the village of Nongriat is the most famous. It’s over 180 years old and is built in a double decker style.
2. Si-o-Se Pol, Isfahan, Iran
The original name for this bridge is Allahverdi Khan, and it is named after the general who commissioned it to be built. It is located near the Charbagh area in Isfahan, Iran, and the river Zayendah used to flow under. However, it has dried up now. The name Si-o-Se Pol comes from the Farsi term which means 33, and refers to the number of arches this structure has.
3. The Wind and Rain Bridge, Chengyang, China
Wind and Rain bridges are common sights in the Guangxi province of China. These covered bridges provide shelter from the rain, and are constructed with porches and pavilions. The Chengyang Bridge is considered the most famous. What makes it so intriguing is that it’s made of wood, but without using any nails and rivets. Simpler materials have been used to connect the pieces of wood. The walkway is lined with small benches, for those who want to rest a little and soak in the surroundings.
4. Stari Most, Bosnia
This humped bridge is a popular tourist attraction because of its historical significance. It was commissioned during the Ottoman Empire and designed by Mimar Hayruddin, who faced a death threat from the Sultan if it didn’t turn out well, or if the bridge collapsed. The bridge was in perfect condition for 427 years, till it was destroyed in 1993 during the war between Bosnia and Herzegovina. In 1998, UNESCO formed a committee to oversee the re-construction of the bridge, which was completed in 2004.
An annual diving competition is held in July, where people jump off the bridge and challenge themselves.
5. Ponte Vecchio, Florence, Italy
A trip to Florence is incomplete without taking a stroll across Ponte Vecchio, and stopping at some of the shops that line the bridge. This three-tiered medieval bridge was constructed over the Arno River. In spite of the German invasion during WW II, the bridge was not destroyed and it also withstood the weight of the water when the river flooded in 1966. Details about its original architect are sketchy, but what is known is that it was built to allow easy passage for the Medici Family from Palazzo Pitti to Palazzo Vecchio.
6. Port du Grand, Vers, France
The Pont du Gard is a fine example of Roman architecture. The Roman engineers built it as a three-storeyed aqueduct over the Gordon River. Limestone is the main material and mortar has been used to design the highest part of the structure. Built in the 1st century AD, it’s a timeless masterpiece.
7. Confederation Bridge, Canada
Moving on to more recent designs, the Confederation Bridge in Canada is the longest bridge in the world to cross ice waters. It connects Prince Edward Islands to New Brunswick. An interesting fact about it is that since its construction in 1997, the production of potatoes in this region has increased considerably. It took four years to build and nearly $ 1 billion was spent.
8. Helix Bridge, Singapore
Made entirely of stainless steel, the Helix Bridge is the world’s first double helix bridge. A pedestrian bridge, it connects the Marina centre with the waterfront area. It has been designed by the same construction firm which built the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum. Built in 2010, it has a mesh design, and is now an important landmark in the city.
Let’s cross these bridges when we get there, shall we?