If you are looking for a unique place to visit, Northern Portugal has plenty to offer—from stunning natural landscapes to picturesque cities. Now, the Arouca Geopark offers yet another destination for travels. 516 Arouca is a new pedestrian suspension bridge that claims to be the longest in the world at 516 meters (almost 1,700 feet). It sits 175 meters (574 feet) above the Paiva river and is held up at the edges of two cliffs.
The bridge was designed by Itecons, a Portuguese engineering and design studio and was completed by Conduril. The design team used two monumental V-shaped towers to support the structure on either cliff. The rest of the design, including the deck and railings, are made of metal grids to help preserve the incredible views of nature—though if you are not a fan of heights, you might not want to look down.
Though 516 meters is surely a long distance to travel by foot, there is some controversy over 516 Arouca's claim of being the longest pedestrian suspension bridge in the world. Nepal’s Baglung Parbat Footbridge may be the real record holder at 567 meters (1,860 feet) long.
Still, since the new design features special considerations for pedestrians with a deck supported by suspended cables—as opposed to the Baglung Parbat Footbridge’s deck which follows the catenary curve of the bridge—the 516 Arouca team insists their win of the title. “It is the largest in the world, as we always said,” explains a representative for the agency. “With 516 meters in length, an altitude from that water level of 175 meters, the highest in terms of construction and with more capacity.”
If you want to go see 516 Arouca yourself, you can find more information on their website as well as great tips on where to stay and where to eat during your visit.