Saruhashi - the Monkey Bridge

One of three famous ancient bridges in Japan

By Cathy Cawood   Aug 21, 2014 - 1 min read

Located in Otsuki is one of Japan's most famous bridges. The 1300 year old wooden bridge crosses the Katsura River in Yamanashi as it flows between two high cliffs. The ingenious cantilevered design is said to have been inspired by monkeys holding hands to cross the river. Obviously it must have been rebuilt many times, but the basic design has never been changed. I was there on a drizzly day in August, but I want to return in autumn when the trees around the bridge are ablaze with color.

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Cathy Cawood

Cathy Cawood @Cathy Cawood

I fell in love with Japan long before I came here in 2003 to teach English, and it has proved to be a lasting romance.  I love the history, the traditional architecture, the food, the strange and sometimes ridiculous contrasts, and the beautiful countryside. I lived in Shiga prefecture for one year, and in Kyoto for nine years, and now I live in Machida in Tokyo. I've traveled a little in Japan, but not nearly as much as I'd like to. I like traveling by train, but my favorite way to travel is bicycle.