Europe is full of unique places to visit, natural wonder and stunning landscapes. Whether you are on a city break in Europe or visiting one of the best European islands, you can be sure that you will see some of the most beautiful bridges in Europe.
Bridges are beautiful! And Europe is a continent built on bridges. From small or unique structures to huge monuments – we are glad to present you a list of the most famous bridges in Europe!
To some, a bridge is just a way to get from one side of a river to another. To those of us in the know, bridges are glorious feats of engineering and design. Not only do they offer unrivalled views of their, often sublime, surroundings, but they themselves are also eye-catching.
So, what bridges deserve more than a fleeting glance? After building an extensive list of our favourite bridges and endless discussion, we’ve whittled down the list to just 29 of the best bridges that you can find in Europe.
Which ones have you already ticked off and which will you add to your next travel adventure?
Most Beautiful Bridges in Europe:
1. Tower Bridge – London, England
Tower Bridge is one of the most iconic bridges in the world and one of the main landmarks in London. It is so well linked with the city of London that is often wrongly referred to as London bridge. London Bridge is actually the next bridge along!
The bridge took eight years to build and is a combination bridge. This means it has two suspension bridge sections and one bascule (raisable) bridge section. It is considered good luck to see the bridge open. This is because it is a rare occurrence, and is the only bridge in London to do so. If you want to boost your chances, you check the timetable to see the spectacle.
Speaking of spectacle, the upper walkway on Tower Bridge is breathtaking. There is a glass-floored walkway across the top of the bridge. This death-defying walk will give you views of the city like no other.
2. Storseisundet Bridge – Norway
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Storseisundet Bridge is the longest and most well known of the seven bridges that cross the small islands between mainland Norway and Averøya island. Located south of Trondheim it is exposed to the Atlantic weather and in the winter months can be buffet by huge waves. The bridge is 260 metres long and sweeps around in a graceful semi-circle 23 metres above the water below. Even on clear calm days the bridge feels exposed and the water can be seen rushing past the solid piers supporting the bridge.
It is part of the Atlantic Road, one of the most scenic but also most dangerous roads in the world. It is part of National Road 64 (RV64), but the road itself only stretches for 8 kilometres, starting 30km south of Kristiansund towards Molde. The bridges can be driven in both directions and there are viewing areas and clear safe parking areas allowing you to explore the bridges.
3. Love Locks Bridge – Salzburg, Austria
Love-lock bridges have sprung up all over the world. These are bridges where lovers have placed a padlock on the structure of the bridge, then thrown the key into the river. The idea is that they have locked down their love. This particular Love Lock Bridge in Salzburg is a great one to visit.
It is a wide pedestrian bridge with views across the old town. Of course, if you want to add a lock of your own, there are plenty of spots to buy a lock. All the shopkeepers have marker pens on hand so you can add your names and the date as well.
4. Pont Saint-Bénézet – Avignon, France
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Formerly a stately 900m bridge with 22 stone arches, the Pont d’Avignon (officially known as the Pont Saint-Bénézet) was once the only link between the Papal State of Comtat Venaissin (that included Avignon) and France. Since its grand beginnings, the Rhône River has eroded many of the arches to the point of collapsing, and now only 4 arches remain.
Despite its inactive state, it retains a special place in the heritage of Avignon and is an iconic landmark in the South of France. The bridge was further immortalized by the French song ‘sur le Pont d’Avignon’ which was a childhood favourite of many.
These days, you have to purchase admission to walk on the bridge (buy a combined ticket if you also plan on visiting the Pope’s Palace), but doing so also gains you access to the petite chapel that adorns the pont. Or, you can simply admire it from above at the Rocher des Doms gardens, or from afar on the île de la Barthelasse.
5. Puente Nuevo Bridge – Ronda, Spain
This dramatic bridge spans the 120-foot ravine between the old town and the new town. Although built in 1793, it is the latest of the bridges in Ronda. The bridge is really a sight to see. It looks like it was hewn from the ravine it’s self.
If you have the energy, you should make the trip down to the bottom of the canyon so you can see just how amazing this construction is.
6. The Bridge of Lies – Sibiu, Romania
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The Bridge of Lies is Romania’s oldest cast-iron bridge. Located in Sibiu, this pedestrian bridge is one of the city’s most iconic tourist attractions. There are many legends associated with the Bridge of Lies – most notably, that if one stands on the bridge and tells a lie, the bridge will begin to ‘talk,’ making creaking sounds and shuddering as if it is about to collapse.
Another legend states that when young lovers would come to the bridge to declare their love if the girl stated she was a virgin and this was found to be untrue on her wedding night, she would be thrown from the bridge.
Yet another tale behind the bridge’s nickname says that dishonest merchants would be punished on the bridge if they were found to be taking advantage of their buyers. This was no doubt meant to frighten any merchants coming to Sibiu into honest business practices.
The Bridge of Lies connects Piața Mică and Piața Huet over Strada Ocnei, connecting the upper and lower towns of Sibiu.
7. Széchenyi Chain Bridge – Budapest, Hungary
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The Széchenyi Chain Bridge is an iconic landmark in Budapest, Hungary and is one of the most beautiful bridges in Europe. The bridge crosses the famous Danube river and brings the two sides, Buda and Pest, together. The bridge is beyond picturesque from a distance and up close, which only adds to its splendour. When in Budapest, walking over the beautiful bridge is a must to get some of the best panoramic views of the city and the Danube River flowing beneath you.
If you only have a few days in Budapest, visiting this bridge should be at the top of your list. It is a stunning attraction for 24 hours a day. At night, the bridge lights up with hundreds of little bulbs illuminating it against the darkness. And during the day it stands tall and bright. The Széchenyi Chain Bridge is an impressive sight and a Hungarian symbol to be admired.
8. Ponte Vecchio – Florence, Italy
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Ponte Vecchio is one of the most iconic bridges in Italy and Europe. It has been a significant bridge since 1218 when it was the only one crossing the Arno River in Florence. Unfortunately, this original bridge was destroyed in a flood in 1345, but a new one was rebuilt in the years that followed.
As Ponte Vecchio’s original purpose was defence, the characteristic Medieval shops on either side came later. These have mostly consisted of jewellry shops since 1593, when Ferdinand I outlawed the bridge’s smellier enterprises, such as butcher shops and tanneries.
Today, Ponte Vecchio has evolved to be one of the most well-known and beautiful Medieval structures in Florence. Even during World War II, the Germans spared this beautiful bridge when they destroyed the others around it. For modern tourists, Ponte Vecchio is the perfect location to take a morning or evening stroll, when it is free from crowds.
9. Wishing Bridge – Ring of Kerry, Ireland
This is certainly not the largest of the bridges on this list, but it is one of the most charming. Local legend says that any wishes made on this bridge are destined to come true, which is, of course, where it got its name. This stone bridge crosses a large stream in the Gap of Dunloe on the Ring of Kerry. The bridge is so picturesque. The surrounding plant life has grown into the bridge, making it seem like it is a part of the natural area.
Getting to the bridge is something you can make a day of. If you like to cycle, then it’s a reasonable distance to ride there and back from the nearby town of Killarney. For a truly memorable visit, you should take a ride through the Gap, and over the bridge in a horse-drawn wagon (also known as a jaunting car), then ride back in a boat to Killarney.
While the bridge is beautiful, the surrounding sights are pretty magical too! In fact, Ring of Kerry is one of the best road trips in Europe!
10. Vintgar Gorge Bohinj Railway Bridge, Slovenia
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Close to Lake Bled in Slovenia is another famous sight, the Vintgar Gorge. Walking through the gorge on wooden walkways and bridges will take you next to the crystal clear water and rapids of the Radovna River. At the end of your walk, you will be just below the Bohinj Railway Bridge that crosses the gorge.
The bridge is built just above the dam and is 33m above the river. This stone bridge was built in 1905 and at 65m long, is the largest stone bridge preserved in its original form in Slovenia. The best time to visit is during autumn when the leaves have changed colour and the crowds are smaller.
If you are lucky when you visit you will see a train cross the bridge, as the bridge is still in use today. You can also go over the bridge by taking Slovenia’s Museum Train. This scenic train takes you over the Vintgar Gorge Bridge and next to the rivers and valleys of Slovenia.
11. Bonifacius Bridge – Bruges, Belgium
Nicknamed the bridge of love, this young bridge is just over 100 years old. Despite its youth, it fits in perfectly to the picturesque town of Bruges. It’s located between two other must-visit spots – the Gruuthuse Palace and Arentshof.
There is a beautiful built-in bench as part of the bridge, so it’s a great spot to stop and watch the swans bobbing along the river.
This really is one of the most beautiful bridges in Europe and a very romantic place to visit.
12. Dom Luís I Bridge – Porto, Portugal
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This bridge crosses the Douro river, connecting Porto with Vila Nova de Gaia, known for its port wine cellars. Walking across it is free and is something you must do while you’re in Porto. To be honest, it’s more enthralling than many of Porto’s museums and other paid tourist sights. Dom Luís I is a double-decker bridge, with a lower level is for cars and an upper level for pedestrians and trams.
There’s a lot of confusion about the bridge, as many people believe that it was built by Gustave Eiffel, of the Eiffel Tower fame. Well, there is a connection with Eiffel, but it’s a bit more nuanced. Nine years before the Dom Luís I bridge was built, Gustave Eiffel built a very similar-looking bridge just one kilometre further down the river. That one is called the Maria Pia bridge, and it has just one level. Eiffel did enter the competition for the design of the Dom Luís I, but he didn’t win. Instead, one of his disciples did, who was strongly influenced by having previously worked on the Maria Pia with Eiffel.
13. Alte Rhinebrücke – Vaduz, Liechtenstein
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There’s an old wooden bridge over the Rhine River that connects the countries of Liechtenstein and Switzerland. This bridge is known as Alte Rhinebrücke which simply means “old bridge over the Rhine” and it was constructed in 1901. It was built upon the pillars of a previous bridge (built in 1870) that had been outgrown over time. Today, it remains the only wooden bridge over the Rhine River.
The Alte Rhinebrücke can be found just a 15-minute walk from the centre of Vaduz, the capital of Liechtenstein, at the point where it connects with the municipality of Sevelen in the canton of St. Gallen, Switzerland. It is closed to all motorized traffic but popular with pedestrians, bicyclists, and horse and cows a-plenty.
Crossing the bridge and, therefore, the invisible border between these two countries takes just a few minutes and documenting your passage with a photo of yourself split between the two is a must.
14. Bridges in Amsterdam, Netherlands
To be frank, we could easily fill this whole list with bridges just from Amsterdam. There are, in fact over 1,700 bridges in the city! Despite the vast number of bridges, they have all been designed and built with the greatest of care. You will be able to see many of the famous bridges during a weekend getaway trip to Amsterdam.
Five of the best include Maere Brug, the skinny bridge. It is, after all, the iconic Amsterdam bridge and possible one of the best-known drawbridge in the world.
Next up it the Torensluis Bridge. While this is not strictly the oldest bridge in the city, it is the earliest that has not been changed or updated since completion. It does have the distinction of being the widest bridge in the town as well. When you do visit, keep an eye at the base of the bridge. The barred windows you’ll see are leftover from when the bridge served as a prison.
Python Bridge is easy to spot. It is a genuinely distinctive bridge. As you might guess by the name, it is shaped like a snake. Its intriguing design and vibrant red colour have even won awards.
The Jan Schaefer Bridge is an engineering masterpiece. This is a bridge that was designed to be dismantled. Like a massive lego kit, the bridge is taken down every five years to make way for Sail Amsterdam. Then the bridge is rebuilt in place.
The final bridge on Amsterdam’s list is the Nescio Bridge, which spans the Rijin Canal. It was the first suspension bridge built in the Netherlands. It was designed by the same architects who made the Millenium Bridge in London, so you know it is well worth viewing.
15. Latin Bridge – Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina
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The ancient Latin Bridge in Sarajevo is not only one of the most stunning bridges in Europe but also a place full of history. First of all, it is the oldest bridge in Sarajevo, built in the 16th century by the Ottomans. Second of all, it was the site of the assassination of Prince Ferdinand of Austria. An event that triggered the first world war.
The bridge has 3 arches and crosses the Miljacka river that runs through the city. It has a scenic location with the foothills of the Dinaric Alps in the back and views on the elegant Austro-Hungarian architecture on both sides of the river.
Nowadays it is still used by pedestrians to go from the residential suburbs to Sarajevo’s old town that is just around the corner. Therefore it is easy to visit when you are sightseeing in Sarajevo because it is within walking distance from the city’s top attractions.
16. Rialto Bridge – Venice, Italy
Of the four bridges that cross The Grand Canal in Venice, the Rialto is the oldest. The bridge has gone through many different incarnations. It started life as little more than a pontoon.
Due to its popular location, it was built, and rebuilt, out of wood. When the second wood bridge collapse from the crowds that had gathered to watch a boat race, it was finally replaced with the stone bridge that stands today. Modelled after the former wooden bridge this stone monument has stood over the canal since 1591.
This beautiful bridge just has to be on your Italian bucket list!
17. P.S. I love you bridge – Wicklow Mountains National Park, Ireland
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The P.S. I love you bridge, is a bridge located in the Wicklow Mountains National Park in Ireland, about an hour away from Dublin. This small but cute bridge received its fame after it was used as a filming location for the romantic comedy/drama P.S. I love you.
This is the bridge where Holly and Gerry meet for the first time. And this is why the location of the bridge is literally labelled “the P.S. I Love You Bridge” on Google maps.
However, even if you’re not into romantic comedies, this stunning bridge is still a worth-while visit. And so is the Wicklow Mountains National Park it is located in.
Make sure you have marked the location on a map before you leave because if you’re just driving over the bridge you probably won’t even realize you have. It’s an extremely small bridge and it doesn’t look like one of the most stunning bridges in Europe from the top. The true beauty of the bridge comes from the side and beneath in combination with the stunning Irish nature!
18. Charles Bridge – Prague, Czech Republic
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One of the most stunning and impressive bridges to explore and enjoy in Prague is the magnificent St. Charles bridge in the historic district of the city. One of the most popular attractions in the city, the bridge is indeed historic with gorgeous stone statues created by king Charles the IV and connecting the old town to the new section across the Vltava river. A popular spot to enjoy views of the river and the panoramic landscape of the historic district, this bridge is quite romantic especially during sunset when visitors go out to check the lovely skies and sun coming down from the palace and cathedral on top of the hills and bathing the area in golden light.
The stone and gothic bridge built in the early 14th century is impressive along with bridge towers on each end that can be climbed for more impressive views of Prague and the river views below. Along the route are 30 baroque stone statues lining the bridge of saints and popular figures of Prague’s historic past. You’ll also encounter live performances, artists selling crafts and hand made gifts and souvenir vendors on this pedestrian-only walking bridge. If you’re spending more time in Prague, check out my post on 15 stunning views of Prague for more inspiration and visiting some of the popular attractions around the city.
19. As Catedrais – Ribadeo, Spain
Since nature often does things best, we just had to include the stunning natural arches that can be found at As Catedrais. The Beach of Cathedrals is one spot that everyone should take time to visit. At low tide, the sea ebbs out and reveals the most incredible network of natural stone arches and caves.
The views here are so exceptional that there is a limit to the number of people allowed on the beach at any one time. This makes the experience more special for sure, but it does make booking necessary.
20. Galata Bridge – Istanbul, Turkey
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A unique melting pot of cultures, Istanbul feels like a bridge that connects not only Asia to Europe but also the East to the West. No wonder one of Istanbul’s main landmarks is actually a bridge.
The iconic Galata Bridge connects the Old City of Istanbul (Eminonu) to Beyoglu. The bridge has both vehicle and pedestrian lanes while its first floor is lined with restaurants and cafes.
Unlike other famous bridges in Europe, Galata Bridge is not a beauty to behold. Yet it’s equally, if not way more, enchanting. In fact, walking along the Galata Bridge, especially at sunset, is the quintessence of Istanbul. For one thing, the bridge is the optimal place from where to catch views to world-renowned monuments such as the Hagia Sophia and the Topkapi Palace.
But, most importantly, Galata Bridge carries the essence of Istanbul in its everyday life moments. From fishermen waiting for the day’s catch with countless seagulls shrieking above them to the scents of apple narghile tobacco and grilled fish coming from the bridge’s first floor and filling up the evening air, Galata Bridge is where the magic of Istanbul happens!
21. Millau Viaduct – near Millau, France
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The Viaduct of Millau is truly exceptional, a real masterpiece of the modern engineering genius. Located near the Southern French town of Millau, this cable-stayed bridge spans over the Tarn River and is one of the must-sees if you are exploring Gorges du Tarn or Aveyron. With its 343 m, it’s the tallest bridge in the world, but not the highest, as it has a deck height of only 245 m.
The viaduct was built only in 3 years and opened in 2004. It has 7 piers and the pylons are 87 m high. It’s 2460 m long and the deck is 32 m wide. These are some very impressive numbers, but what is more impressing is that despite all this steel and concrete, the bridge looks airy, as a feather resting on two hills above the river.
There are a lot of places from where you can have an amazing view of the bridge, but the best one is from the car park next to the museum (Viaduct Exhibition), located at one end of the bridge. The museum offers a very good interactive exhibition where you can learn everything about the viaduct and the area. There are also guided tours available.
22. Suspension Bridge – Ramsau am Dachstein, Austria
You’d better wrap up warm for this one. This is Austria’s highest suspension bridge. Strung between snow-capped mountain peaks of Austrian Alps this suspension bridge offers you unrivalled views, along with some heart-pounding thrills. At 400m high, you’d best have a head for heights. Along with the suspension bridge is the Stairway to Nothingness. You climb down 14 steps onto a glass-bottom viewpoint. You stand over nothing but the drop of the mountain – not for the faint-hearted!
A visit to the bridge makes a fantastic day out as it is linked to the Dachstein Ice Palace. This magical palace is carved out the glacial ice. After the dizzying heights of the suspension bridge, you can delve 6 meters into the ice to see the stunning carvings and creations hidden inside the glacier.
23. The Chapel Bridge – Lucerne, Switzerland
In Lucerne, Switzerland you can find Europe’s oldest wooden bridge. Built in 1333 to protect the city from attack, the Chapel Bridge spans to Reuss River. That the bridge is still standing today is a wonder as the whole structure was ravaged by fire in 1993.
This is a bridge you should not miss seeing. It’s covered walkway takes you diagonally across the river. This bridge is unique, and you won’t find another like it.
24. Đurđevića Tara Bridge – Montenegro
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Durdevica Tara Bridge is situated within stunning Durmitor National Park, Montenegro. Surrounded by mountains, it’s definitely a must-see for anyone travelling around The Balkans. In fact, the whole region is full of unique and natural attractions. The concrete arch bridge – reminiscent of Ella Bridge in Sri Lanka – was built over Tara Canyon, which is the largest canyon in Europe at a maximum of 1300m deep.
You can go rafting down the canyon and experience the bridge from below, take a 1050m extreme zipline alongside it, or simply enjoy the view of the bridge itself from the safety of a roadside cafe. Completed in 1940, Durdevica Tara Bridge stands at 172m tall over the river. You can also walk across the bridge itself, making use of the small sidewalks to avoid traffic.
Many travellers choose to stay at nearby town Zabjlak, which is also a good base for visiting the Black Lake, the mountains of Durmitor National Park and Piva Lake.
25. Ha’penny Bridge – Dublin, Ireland
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The Ha’Penny Bridge in Dublin is absolutely stunning. Officially called the Liffey Bridge, as it spans across the River Liffey, this bridge from 1816 is by far the most iconic and popular bridge in Dublin. In fact, it was the only pedestrian bridge to cross the River Liffey until the opening of the Millenium Bridge (1999).
The name Ha’Penny stems from the fact that the Liffey ferry operator, William Wash, was forced to make a decision to either repair his seven disrepaired ferries or to build a bridge. He opted for the latter but was granted an allowance from anybody who wanted to cross the bridge for the next 100 years. So, until 1919, you had to pay half a penny (a Ha’Penny) to cross this cast-iron bridge. Nowadays, this bridge is both a tourist magnet and used by Dubliners alike (roughly 30,000 people cross the bridge each day). It is just beautiful to look at.
The elegant bridge has a 43 metres span and is 3.6 meters wide. It arches 3 meters above the River Liffey and is adorned with decorative lamp posts. It is even used as a filming location, for example in movies such as Far and Away (1992) or Michael Collins (1996).
26. Hidden Bridge – between Helsinki and Vantaa, Finland
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I am going to bring you to Finland! There is one bridge that I cross a few times a week, and it happened to be my favourite. The Cool thing is – almost no one knows it. It doesn’t even have a Wikipedia page in English.
This bridge connects two cities: Vantaa and Helsinki. Itis one of the oldest in Finland. It is a classic arch bridge made out of a rock, constructed in 1895. Around the bridge, you can find lovely Finnish countryside with lots of cycling roads and forests.
It is obviously not as luxuriously beautiful as bridges in Prague or St. Petersburg (Russia). But it represents what Finland actually is. Simple, minimalistic, and with outstanding care to the heritage.
The bridge is not easy to reach. The bus from central Helsinki takes around 40 minutes. But I think, calm rest in the countryside is the main reason to visit Finland, and the bridge is located exactly there.
27. Fiordo di Furore Bridge – Amalfi, Italy
The Amalfi coast is well known for its strikingly blue water and its exquisite beaches. The Fiordo di Furore Bridge crosses a small fjord. Hidden inside the fjord is a secretive little cove. From the bridge, you can get a view of the secluded beach.
Along the cliffside, you can spot the precarious stairs that have been built into the rock. Although no longer accessible, they are a fantastic sight to see. If you want to get a view of the bridge itself you can take a boat ride to the beach. The waters are lovely for a swim, and the bridge frames the views out to sea.
28. Old Stone Bridge – Regensburg, Germany
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The city of Regensburg in Bavaria, southern Germany, is home to one of Europe’s most beautiful and important bridges. Constructed in the mid-12th century, the bridge has 16 short but majestic stone arches spanning the Danube. For centuries it was the only stone bridge across a long stretch of the Danube, and Regensburg grew in power and importance as a centre of trade thanks largely to the bridge. It was also the model for other European stone bridges, including London Bridge and Dresden’s Elbe Bridge, and is dotted with various sculptures including emperors, kings, queens, and animals. Though sadly, only one of the three original defence towers still remains.
These days, Regensburg and its intact medieval core is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, largely because of the bridge. Regensburg is also home to a magnificent cathedral that’s not to be missed. And be sure to visit Germany’s oldest bratwurst kitchen at the southern end of the bridge! It was originally built to feed workers constructing the bridge, and later became a kitchen to supply hungry traders and dockworkers working on and around the bridge.
29. The Eton Walkway Bridge – Windsor, England
The names Eton and Windsor have a particular resonance. They speak of a quintessential Britishness, and perhaps a touch of ‘posh’ as well. The Eton Walkway is a 2-mile circular walk that will take you around 18 different points of interest in this historic town.
The walk starts at the Windsor Bridge. The bridge joins the cities of Windsor and Eton and is open to pedestrians and cyclists only. If you are looking for a spot to view the river Thames or Windsor Castle, then this is the place for you.
Have These Bridges Inspired Your Next Travel Plans?
Now is the perfect time to seize the moment to plan your next adventure. A good place to start is by making your travel bucket list. You should certainly put some of these incredible bridges on the list, and we know you’ll find other places on wonder nearby too to really make a trip out of it.
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