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Akashi Kaikyo Bridge

“The worlds longest central span!”

The Akashi Kaikyo Bridge spans the fierce Akashi Straits. The straits are renowned for their strong tidal currents and severe storms, which eventually forced its construction. At 3,911m (2.43 miles) in total length and with the supporting towers standing 282.2m (928ft) above the sea, the 1.991m (1.23 miles) central span makes it the world’s longest.

Facts over, when you actually get to ride across this amazing feat of engineering, the first thing that struck me was how quickly the crossing was! Maybe it was just the mind being busy with the views or appreciating the design and clean lines of the bridge or that the traffic was being efficiently steered toward the destination on the other side. I was expecting strong winds and buffeting even on a calm day, but pleasantly relieved that I was not having to hang off the bike to aid its course or choose wider tracks keeping a distance from passing traffic.

Tolls are not cheap! So make sure your journey is worthwhile and that you don’t have to make a return journey soon. For a motorcycle to cross from Tarumi (the last entry point before the bridge and exiting at Awaji Kita Smart just over the bridge, it will cost ¥2,150 (approx. $21) one way. So that my up-and-coming trip to Shikoku Island needs to be planned and well thought out to get the best out of the Yen in my pocket. For me to ride to Naruto from Kobe-Nishi will be ¥4,560 (approx.$45). You could try the ferry from Akashi to Awaji, but then you’d be walking the rest of the way, as the ferry only takes passengers.

The cost is worth it though as the rewards on the other side are spectacular!

(Facts courtesy of Wikipedia).

P.S. For up to date toll information and timetables of the bridges light shows visit Honshu-Shikoku Expressway Company website and if you would like a closer look at the bridge, why not try a bridge tour. Visit the Bridge World website, where you’ll find explanations about its construction and information about their tours.


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