A Tale of Two Bridges

July 02, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

 

The roman built Pont du Gard is part of a 50 kilometre long aqueduct that stretches, largely underground, between Uzes and Nimes in the South of France.  The most well known and best preserved section, the Pont du Gard, spans the Gardon River gorge near Remoulins.  We spent a lovely day wandering around enjoying the great views of the surrounding countryside and wondering at the beauty, size and impressive engineering of this structure.  The pont was constructed largely without the use of mortar or clamps and the blocks, some weighing up to 6 tonnes, were precisely cut so that they would hold together by friction alone.  UNESCO declared the Pont du Gard a World Heritage Site in 1985.

A couple of days later we travelled to another large and amazing feet of engineering, Viaduc de Millau (pronounced mee-yo).  At the time of its opening in 2004 Viaduc de Millau was the world's tallest bridge and the longest cable stayed bridge in the world.  Also called Pont Millau this spectacular bridge spans the Tarn Valley in the South of France.  It is regarded as one of the greatest engineering achievements of all time.

I do wonder though if it will last as long as Pont du Gard. Pont du GardPont du GardPont du GArd is a roman built aquaduct in France and is today a UNESCO Monument of International Importance Pont du GardPont du GardPont du GArd is a roman built aquaduct in France and is today a UNESCO Monument of International Importance Pont MillauPont MillauPont Millau, or Viaduc de Millau (pronounced mee-yo). At the time of its opening in 2004 Viaduc de Millau was the world's tallest bridge and the longest cable stayed bridge in the world.

 


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