10 cool railway bridges from around the world

10 cool railway bridges from around the world

16 July 2013

From the iconic to the downright terrifying, we take a look at cool railway bridges from around the world.

Cool railway bridges, for want of a better term, are among the most recognisable cultural icons in the world and impressive feats of engineering too. Peruse our pick of stunning railway bridges.

Forth Railway Bridge, Scotland

Forth Railway Bridge by Dave Conner | CC BY 2.0

The Forth Railway Bridge in Scotland connects Edinburgh with Fife over the Firth of Forth (try saying that with a mouthful). Built with 3.5million tonnes of metal, including ten times the amount of steel used to build the Eiffel Tower, it's an iconic part of the Edinburgh horizon. Unlike the road bridge beneath it, this beautiful bridge has stood proud since 1890, and should do for many more years.

Veresk Bridge, Iran

Veresk bridge Iran

Veresk Bridge © Photographs & Images. All rights reserved

The Veresk Bridge, part of the Trans-Iranian railway, was part of a major project carried out during the reign of Reza Shah the Great of Persia. Running from northern Iran to the Persian Gulf, the bold project was known as the Pol-e Piroozi , the 'Bridge of Victory' when it was completed in 1939.

Vaalankurkku Railway Bridge, Finland

Vaalankurkku Railway Bridge by Teemu Vehkaoja | CC BY-SA 3.0

The Vaalankurkku Railway Bridge crosses the Oulojoki river in Finland, not far from Vaala station. This gorgeous photo, by Teemu Vehkaoja, won a Wikimania award for its contribution to free content on the web.

Lorraine Viaduct, Switzerland

All images © Philipp Schäfer. All rights reserved

The Lorraine Viaduct in Switzerland is a 1092m long bridge that spans part of the Bern-Olten railway line. It replaced the Red Bridge (which could not be crossed by two trains at the same time) in 1941 as part of the modernisation of the line.

Cikurutug Bridge, Indonesia

Argo Gede Train Passing Cikurutug Bridge

Cikurutug Bridge, Indonesia © The Wondrous. All rights reserved

If you hop aboard the Argo Gede train from Jakarta’s Gambir station to Bandung, in Indonesia, you'll cross the Cikurutug Bridge. 200ft from the valley floor, it's as scenic as it is scary!

Hohenzollern Railway Bridge, Germany

Dom, Koln by William Neuheisel | CC BY 2.0

If you travel to Cologne by train, not only will you be greeted by the stunning sight of Cologne Cathedral but you'll arrive via the iconic Hohenzollern Bridge. During WWII the bridge stood up to multiple airstrikes, a testament to its strength. Since 2008, amorous passers-by began a tradition of affixing love padlocks to the bridge on the wall separating the pedestrian walkway from the tracks.

Viaduct of Fades, France


Fades Viaduct © Jean Michel. All rights reserved

At the time of its completion the Viaduct of Fades, which spans Sioule river in France, was the tallest of its kind in the world. Though that is not longer the case it still boasts the tallest bridge piers (upright supports) built in traditional masonry.

Landwasser Viaduct, Switzerland

Landwasser Viaduct © Peter Thoeny | CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Iconic of Swiss tourist brochures, the Landwasser ('land-water') Viaduct in Switzerland, is one of the most famous in the world. It's the signature structure of the World Heritage listed Albula Railway, and today you can cross it on the well-known Bernina and Glacier Express train services.

West Branch Feather River Bridge, USA

West Branch Feather River Bridge © Eric Sakowski | HighestBridges.com. All rights reserved

Crossing Lake Oroville in California, America's deepest manmade lake, is the whimsically titled West Branch Feather River Bridge. It's also one of the most impressive double-decker bridges with a highway for cars on top and train tracks on the bottom.

Whirlpool Rapids Bridge, Canada

Whirlpool Rapids Bridge by Christopher Chan | CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Crossing the international border between Canada and the United States, the Whirlpool Rapids Bridge connects Niagara Falls, Ontario with Niagara Falls, New York. It's another road and rail bridge with cars on the bottom and train tracks on the top.

Special mention - Viaduct of Chamborigaud, France

Viaduc de Chamborigaud by Jacounet30 | CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Though not remarkable from an engineering point of view, the viaduct at Chamborigaud deserves a special mention as one of the most photogenic railway bridges in France. The more keen-eyed of you will notice that it has appeared more than one on Loco2's own pages and you'll no doubt recognise it from elsewhere too. With pictures like this one it's easy to see why.

Main image and thumbnail: Viaduc de Chamborigaud by Jacounet30 | CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

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