The Eshima Ohashi Bridge Japanese bridge is very famous for its vertical drop. It is a very famous tourist attraction and should be on your to do list for your road trip in Japan. It is one the most spectacular bridges in the world.
What is the Eshima Ohashi Bridge, of the highest road in the world?
Eshima Ohashi Bridge (or Eshima Grand Bridge) is a rigid frame bridge located in Japan. It was built in 2004.
The bridge connects the two localities of Matsue (Shimane Prefecture) and Sakaiminato (Tottori Prefecture).
Locals call that bridge the “Roller coaster bridge” for its vertical drop. That’s why it is a fun road to drive.
It is the third highest road bridge in the world.
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Why was the Eshima Ohashi Bridge built that way?
Why the bridge is so high?
Before the construction of the new bridge, the circulation was interrupted every 10 minutes to open the bridge to let the cargo boats navigate.
Local engineers had no choice but to construct 44 meters (145 ft) high bridge. That allows traffic to flow on it without interruption.
Some characteristics of the bridge frame:
If you are a thrill-seeker, the drive is for you: 1.6 kilometers (1 mile) of a 6.1% gradient climb from the Shimane side, then a 5.1% gradient slope on the other, Tottori, side.
The roller coaster impression is more of an optical illusion. Although you will still be placed in your seat during the climb then you will have to stand for the descent.
Other interesting facts about this scenic road:
The bridge is also named “Betabumizaka” by the locals. In Japanese, that means “the climb foot to the floor”. The reason for that naming is that unless you press the accelerator pedal of your car as much as possible, you will not be able to drive on the steep slope of the bridge.
The bridge crosses the Nakaumi lake of the view worth it even on feet. While driving you will not enjoy the view as much as you walk. Indeed, you will be to concentrate on your drive.
At night time, the bridge looks also very good and the landscape with the bridge is beautiful.
How to get to Eshima Ohashi Bridge?
To access the roller coaster bridge, you will have to drive 10 minutes from the Sakaiminato station. It is also 10 minutes from Miho-Yonago Airport.
You can also come from the Yonago expressway to “Yonago IC” and from there the bridge is 40 minutes by car.
We advise you to drive from Matsue, the crossing will be more impressive! You can also go back and forth to have the experience of both ways.
Video of the drive on the Eshima Ohashi Bridge:
You can watch this video in order to have an idea of this scenic road bridge drive:
Is the Eshima Ohashi bridge open?
The bridge doesn’t close. However, be aware that the place is very touristic, meaning that you can encounter traffic jams on your way to get there.
To take the perfect picture of the Eshima Ohashi bridge with the optic illusion, you have to stand near the supermarket at the Shimane Prefecture intersection.
So, if you want to test an attraction without getting out of your car, the Eshima Ohashi bridge is for you!
Pictures source: mstk east – eshima oohashi 04, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=37893337
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