The Vizcaya Suspension Bridge joins the two banks of the Nervión estuary since 1893. Today it is still in use, which does not prevent it from being a monument worth visiting between the Biscayan populations of Portugalete and Getxo. And once you visit, you have to get on it and save the estuary, either walking, by bike or by car, by heights or by barge.
The importance of Vizcaya Suspension BridgeVizcaya Suspension Bridge - dvoevnore
Using the Vizcaya Suspension Bridge represents a very important time saving for its users, and certainly for very little money if we compare it with the benefit it provides. Therefore, the owner company has been careful to keep it in perfect condition for use today.
They have kept it in use and have kept all its aesthetics, which really has its beauty point. When contemplated is understood because It has been the first industrial work in Spain declared a World Heritage Site. Let's know a little more about its history.
Alberto de Palacio, its builderBiscay Bridge - Francisco Javier Gil
The Vizcaya Suspension Bridge was a pioneering engineering work. It was the first ferry bridge built with iron structure in the world. And of course, iron was in the 19th century a material well known to Basque industries, and more specifically from nearby Bilbao.
We owe his design to Alberto de Palacio, who studied with Gustave Eiffel, the great master of iron constructions, with the Eiffel Tower at the head.
It is said that the famous French architect reviewed all the structural calculations of Alberto de Palacio and saw the viability of the project.
This work was to become the masterpiece of his life, and that which made other interesting constructions, such as the Palacio de Cristal del Retiro in Madrid. However, the impact of the Vizcaya Suspension Bridge was enormous and soon replicas were created all over the world.
Bridge FeaturesTop - Saül Gordillo / Flickr.com
The Suspension Bridge reaches a length of 160 meters to join the two banks. But the most important fact is its height of 45 meters, which allowed the passage of large ships leaving the Bilbao shipyards.
Today ships are still passing by, but less than a few decades ago. However, the possibility of this maritime traffic exists. Which does not prevent Pedestrians and cars can cross the Vizcaya Suspension Bridge 365 days a year and 24 hours a day.
"The value of an idea lies in its use."
-Thomas A. Edison-
A minute and a half journeyBiscay Bridge - Patrick Dobeson / Flickr.com
As long as no boats enter the estuary, the ferry has a frequency of 8 minutes, six and a half to board up to 200 passengers and vehicles, and the rest for the own displacement of the barge that hangs and displaces by means of imposing steel cables.
You can also pass the Vizcaya Suspension Bridge walking along its top, and even ascends with the two panoramic elevators, to enjoy a view of the mouth of the Nervión in Santurce. And from the heights you can see the two towns linked by the bridge: Getxo and Portugalete.
On one side, GetxoGetxo - Rafel Miro / Flickr.com
Getxo offers some of the best beaches in the entire Greater Bilbao metropolitan area, as is the case of Las Arenas.
Next to these beaches there are a couple of marinas, in addition to the Old Port of Algorta, a small nucleus in which it is highly recommended to approach on the weekend, since the tascas offered by the exquisite pintxos of Basque cuisine abound.
Further, a walk through the urban center of Getxo shows the bourgeois splendor from contemporary times to the Vizcaya Suspension Bridge. An era, that of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in which many houses of elegant artistic styles were built.
To the other, Portugalete
While a flat urban landscape dominates in Getxo, in Portugalete they send the slopes, some of pending defendants. You have to suffer them to see the Santa Clara Cultural Center, the Salazar Tower or the Santa María Basilica.
By the way, from the basilica there is an elevated viewpoint on the Vizcaya Suspension Bridge, and one continues to admire the beauty monument that does not prevent it from being functional for the entire population and its visitors.