I must have a thing for bridges. I wrote 18 months ago about some of the amazing structures around the world, and am compelled to follow up this week, because I am slightly too excited over the opening this week of the world's longest sea bridge which stretches from Hong Kong, all the way to Macau (more below).
Considering we are flying to Beijing, China on Monday, there's a distinct possibility I will experience this engineering miracle after our tour, when we spend a few days in Hong Kong itself. China actually seems to have a bit of a monopoly on spectacular bridges, but I do spread the love a little. Here are another 5 amazing bridges to experience.
TOP 5 - Bridges of the World
1. HKZM - Hong Kong to Macau, China (above and below)
It's taken 9 years to complete and create a whole lot of controversy, but the Hong Kong - Zhuzai - Macau (HKZM) bridge opens this week. It includes 22 miles of a three-lane highway from northern Lantau, right next to HKG Airport to the Western Shore of the Pearl River Estuary, with a 4.1 mile tunnel between two artificial islands along the way to prevent any disruption to sea traffic.
2. Zhangjiajie Canyon Glass Bridge, China (below)
This is the world's highest and longest glass-bottomed bridge and despite needing to close for strengthening just 3 weeks after opening in 2016, it now handles a heavy flow of tourists, with a maximum of 600 at one time. As if it's not terrifying enough already, a bungee jump and ziplines are also available.
3. High Trestle Trail Bridge - Madrid, Iowa (below)
This dramatic bridge stretches a 1/2 mile across the Des Moines River and is part of a 25-mile trail that winds its way through five Iowa towns, from Woodward to Ankeny. Representing the area's mining past, it is beautifully lit at night with lights reflecting in the river below and bringing additional meaning to this "rails to trails" project.
4. Sydney Harbour Bridge - Australia
One of the most recognized structures in the world and home to the most spectacular New Years Eve fireworks display on the planet (above). Prince Harry climbed it just a few days ago along with the Australian PM as part of the launch of the Invictus Games, and this has become a tourist favorite activity in the last few years. The full climb (below) is a 3 1/2 hour experience and gives you an incredible 360 degree panorama of Sydney.
5. Millau Viaduct - Tarn, France (below)
About 40 miles NW of Montpelier in the south of France, is another world record holding bridge. It's the tallest in the world at 1,125 feet, which is taller than the Eiffel Tower. It's also over 1 1/2 miles long yet only touches the valley floor in 9 spots.
Top tip - head to a unique viewing area, created in the old Caussenarde farm of Brocuéjouls. It is the ideal place to look down on the giant viaduct. Meanwhile discover the Aveyron, its cultural and natural heritage and the local gastronomy.
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