Travel

The World's Most Stupefyingly Gorgeous Bridges

Published On 09/27/2016 Published On 09/27/2016
Allah Verdi Khan bridge
Allāhverdi Khan Bridge (Si-o-seh pol), Isfahan, Iran | Anton_Ivanov / Shutterstock.com

So there are a lot of really incredible bridges out there. Seriously, a lot. How do we know this? Because we scaled new heights in the world -- or world wide web, whatever -- to locate the most staggering ones out there. Suspension bridges that rival that one from Shrek. Foot bridges that sway over foggy-bottomed ravines. One that's literally alive. These are 13 spans that will make you gasp on your way to whatever's on the other side.

johnbraid / Shutterstock.com

Gateshead Millennium Bridge

England
Spoiler alert: this is maybe the coolest bridge on the list. And not just because it's known in some circles as the "Blinking Eye Bridge" or "Winking Eye Bridge," but its crescent shape and tilted movement make this bridge over the River Tyne in Newcastle actually look like it's winking at you.

Sinseeho/Shutterstock

Langkawi Sky Bridge

Malaysia
If bridges ever enter your fantasy dreams -- and we're not here to judge -- it's possible they look a lot like this one. The cable-suspended bridge is thousands of feet above sea level, can only be accessed on foot, and both stunningly and terrifyingly winds through a rainforest in Malaysia.

PHB.cz (Richard Semik) / Shutterstock.com

The Millau Viaduct

France
[In a Michael Buffer voice]: In this corner, weighing in at $400 million in just construction costs, we have the tallest and longest bridge in the entiiiiiire woooooorld. Spanning the Tarn valley in Southern France, its peak height is nearly 1,200ft above the valley floor.

JPRichard/Shutterstock

Allāhverdi Khan Bridge (Si-o-seh pol)

Iran
A double-decker in the house! Its somewhat-hard-to-pronounce name means "33 Bridge," because that's how many arches it has -- that all, by the way, were built in the 1600s.

Pecold/Shutterstock

Rialto Bridge

Venice
Yes, this bridge may be mainstream, but dammit it just felt wrong not including it. First of all, its breathtaking architecture has held up since 1588 when it was built, and it's dubbed "the heart of Venice." It was also the only way to walk across the Grand Canal for nearly half a century. And most importantly, its compact size makes it fit an Instagram frame like a damn glove.

pisaphotography/Shutterstock

Seven Mile Bridge

Florida Keys
As a Florida native, I was borderline giddy when this bridge received all the recent glorious TV recognition it deserved on Netflix’s Bloodline. Seven miles doesn't seem like nearly enough when you're literally cruising on the crystal-clear waters to paradise.

Alexander Chaikin/Shutterstock

Trift Bridge

Switzerland
You gotta love when a bridge is not only insanely gorgeous, but tells a story -- aside from "I'm going to take you to the other side." The Trift Bridge is essentially the result of global warming, because when the Trift Glacier melted they needed that bad boy to get tourists over to the hut foot of the Swiss Alps. The good news, this is now one of the most jaw-dropping pedestrian bridges that exists. Thanks, nature?

Lijuan Guo/Shutterstock

Lions Gate Bridge

Vancouver, Canada
This bridge's resume reads like its own IMDb page (yes, it's named after that Lionsgate film company). For instance, maybe you've seen it blown up in movies like Final Destination 5, or as the backdrop in Tron: Legacy. In other words, good luck getting this Vancouver bridge to pose in pictures with you without going through an agent.

Grigvovan / Shutterstock.com

Chengyang Bridge

China
Let's just get right into the most terrifying/impressive bridge stat of the millennium: this entire structure -- which doubles almost as a mixed-use social building for locals -- was constructed without a single nail. (Mic. Drop.)

Cvandyke/Shutterstock

Mile High Swinging Bridge

North Carolina
This pervy little guy, amirite? Seriously though, when it comes to swinging suspension bridges that are indeed mile-high, it doesn't get better than this North Carolina bridge. When you cross over it, assuming you don't look down and freak out, you're surrounded by 360-degree panoramic views from Grandfather Mountain.

dhritipurna/Shutterstock

Living root bridge

India
Shockingly, Tarzan is not the architect of this one. It was in fact a local tribe that used some crazy magic to actually make the ficus tree roots grow in a certain direction that supported a bridge that is now upwards of 100ft in length (depending on the growth that year).

mandritoiu/Shutterstock

Verrazano-Narrows Bridge

New York
The Brooklyn Bridge gets all the hype. We aren't here to deny its splendor, but if you haven't noticed, its neighbor that connects Brooklyn to Staten Island over the Narrows is no slouch. And it sorta can't be, given it was envisioned as the gateway to the New World (aka New York).

Nataliya Hora / Shutterstock.com

Helix Bridge

Singapore
You're not having an acid flashback, this stainless-steel, illuminated bridge that spans Marina Bay in Singapore actually is intentionally shaped like the four bases of DNA. (Or is it?)

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Liz Newman is a contributing writer for Thrillist, and wants to throw honorable mention to a bridge in her hometown she still gets terrified driving over to this day: the Skyway Bridge. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @lizn813.

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