AROUCA, Portugal — A narrow footbridge suspended across a river canyon that claims to be the world’s longest pedestrian bridge has been officially inaugurated in northern Portugal.
The Arouca Bridge stretches nearly one-third of a mile across a gorge over the Paiva River as it flows through a waterfall.
Even when the wind is calm, the crossing is not for the faint-hearted. It is held up by steel cables and two massive towers on each side, but wobbles a little with every step.
Visitors step onto a see-through metal grid pathway suspended 570 feet over the fast-flowing river below. The path is wide enough for two people.
Children under the age of six are not allowed on the bridge and all visits will be accompanied by guides.
Residents nearby hope the bridge will help revive tourism in the region, especially after the coronavirus pandemic.
The first visitors crossed the bridge last Thursday, when the span opened to locals. Monday, bookings were open to everyone.
The structure took about two years to build at the cost of nearly $3 million.