This may not be a right spot for people afraid of heights.
Ryujin Otsuribashi, or Ryujin Big Suspension Bridge, is the longest pedestrian bridge in Japan’s main island of Honshu. Built in a V-shaped canyon in the city of Hitachiota in Ibaraki prefecture, the bridge allows visitors to enjoy the breathtaking panoramic view of a lake, river and mountains that changes in each season.
The bridge is 375-meter long with the height of 100 meters from a man-made lake that was created by building the Ryujin Dam on the Ryujingawa River. Construction of the bridge in the canyon Ryujinkyo was completed in 1994 when it was opened to the public. Ryujin literally means a dragon god. There is a local legend that a dragon once lived in the region. Main towers of the bridge are designed to look like dragons flying to the sky. The opposite end of the bridge features a carillon facility called “Mori no Kane” which makes the three kinds of bell sounds – love, hope and happiness.
From mid-April to mid-May, the area hosts the Ryujinkyo Koinobori Festival, which puts up about 1,000 colorful carp streamers with wire ropes along the bridge. It is a Japanese custom to fly carp banners around Children’s Day, May 5, to wish for children’s healthy growth.
In autumn, the bridge is crowded with tourists. The area is well known for the beautiful colored autumn leaves on mountains. A foliage season festival is held in November.
The bridge is getting famous not only for nature lovers, but adventurers as well. From March in 2014, bungee jumping from the bridge became available. It gives the thrill of 100-meter free fall, which is the highest bungee jumping in Japan.
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