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Stomach-churning pedestrian bridge opens in Portugal

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This bridge will take a toll on the faint of heart.

The world’s largest pedestrian suspension bridge — 516 Arouca — opened Thursday in Portugal.

People walk on the world's longest pedestrian suspension bridge '516 Arouca', now open for local residents in Arouca, Portugal.
The bridge took workers two years to finish.
Violeta Santos Moura/Reuters

The views of rock-strewn mountains covered in lush greenery are spectacular from the 1693 foot crossing, but the see-through metal grid pathway that wobbles with every step might give many walkers pause.

The Portuguese bridge cost $2.8 million to construct.
Julio Torres/Reuters

The bridge traverses the fast moving River Paiva in the Arouca Geopark, suspended 574 feet above the water.

“Oh…here we go!,” Hugo Xavier, 42, said, as he gathered the courage to be one of the first to walk across 516 Arouca.

People walk on the world's longest pedestrian suspension bridge '516 Arouca', now open for local residents in Arouca, Portugal.
Travelers will be allowed to trek along the bridge starting May 3, 2021.
Violeta Santos Moura/Reuters

“I was a little afraid, but it was so worth it,” the Arouca resident said on the other side. “It was extraordinary, a unique experience, an adrenaline rush.”

The $2.8 million bridge took two years to build, and officials hope it will attract visitors to the economically depressed region.

People walk on the world's longest pedestrian suspension bridge '516 Arouca', now open for local residents in Arouca, Portugal.
The bridge hangs 574 feet above the water below.
Violeta Santos Moura/Reuters

“It is a breath of fresh air for our land because it will attract more investment, more people,” said tour guide Emanuel.

The bridge will open to tourists on Monday.

A general view of the world's longest pedestrian suspension bridge '516 Arouca', now open for local residents in Arouca, Portugal.
From end to end, the bridge spans 1,693 feet.
Julio Torres/Reuters

“There were many challenges that we had to overcome… but we did it,” Arouca Mayor Margarida Belem said.

“There’s no other bridge like this one in the world.”

With Wires

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