Vertigo sufferers beware! Taking a walk along the world’s longest glass bridge in China's Hebei province is a head-spinning undertaking.
With a length of 488 metres, the new bridge in the Hongyagu Scenic Area in the Hebei province of northeastern China is officially the longest in the world. The bridge is four metres wide and sits at a whopping 218 metres above the valley between two steep cliffs. And of course, it’s glass-bottomed, so you can see the beautiful scenery of mountains and waterfalls everywhere around you and below you.
The bridge is paved with more than a thousand panels of transparent glass, and it’s for their protection that visitors have to wear special “shoe gloves” to minimise the damage of their soles. To add a bit more of a thrill, the bridge is also designed to swing a little once you get to the centre. Although there will be no fake sounds of breaking, like the one in the East Taihang Scenic Area, still in the Hebei province.
The bridge is built to be completely windproof and to be able to support up to two thousand people at a time, although its managers won’t let more than five hundred people walk it at the same time. And if you feel like you need help crossing, don’t worry – members of the staff are stationed along the way to help those who get scared get to the other side.
The Hongyagu Bridge is only the latest in the huge collection of glass bridges that China has built over the years, and while it’s officially the longest, it’s not the tallest – that record belongs to the bridge in the Zhangjiajie Grand Canyon, which swings at 300 metres high above the ground.