Long Bien Bridge - "The muse" of history in the heart of Hanoi capital
Hanoi capital has the peaceful Red River flowing through. To connect the two gentle rivers banks, there are many bridges overpassing, but to mention a bridge which has gone through many ups and downs in the history, as well as bears the magnificence of Hanoi, perhaps it must definitely be Long Bien Bridge. Throughout the course of history of formation and existence, even though more than a hundred years have passed, Long Bien Bridge has always been dedicated to connecting the life of the two river banks of Red River, a significant witness for Hanoi's unforgettable and heroic past time.
Historically, the capital of Hanoi at that time - the days when French colonialists started their invasion, our country was still an undeveloped city with outdated transportation system. The French government wanted to promote the colonial exploitation for the first time (1897 - 1914) and opened many routes so that they could easily transport goods to their country. The General Governor of Indochina was also very interested in the circulation of goods from the center of the Northern Delta to Hai Phong seaport and from Hai Phong to Hanoi. At that time, there was no bridge, so all the transportations were carried out by ferry, which was absolutely challenging. Therefore, the French government decided to plan and build this artery bridge.
The Long Bien Bridge was originally named after the sixth incumbent General Governor of Indochina: Paul Doumer, whose fate went through lots of ups and downs. After keeping the position as the General Governor of Indochina (1897-1902), Mr. Paul Doumer returned to France to continue participating in politics and became the fourteenth President of France and was unfortunately assassinated after less than a year in power. The name Paul Doumer gradually receded into the past after 1954 when the bridge over the Red River was officially named Long Bien. 1954 was also the time when the French Expeditionary Army had to withdraw from Hanoi under the Geneva Agreement and the Hanoi Capital was completely liberated. The North of Vietnam advanced on the road to building socialism, marking a considerable milestone in the development of Vietnam as a nation. For more than a century, Long Bien Bridge has always stood proud and majestic, despite many times being bombarded by foreign invaders.
Long Bien Bridge was the first bridge to be built across the Red River, connecting Hoan Kiem and Long Bien districts in the two sides of the river. Walking across the bridge, on the Hoan Kiem side, you can easily see an iron plate embossed with the words: 1899 - 1902; Daydé & Pillé, Paris. This is the most accurate information about this bridge. The first two digits are the year of construction and completion of the bridge. Daydé & Pillé is a French construction company based in Paris whose blueprint was considered the optimal option among six French companies participating in the bidding to build the historic bridge.
Walking on a steel bridge that is over hundred years old now, you can still easily feel its proud and heroic past. Thanks to the talented hands of French architects, Long Bien Bridge was constructed with high-rise steel beams, and equally robust as well. The steel structure has created a solid bridge and nurtured a special romance that can only be seen when you are actually on the bridge.
Late afternoons when the sunset gradually falls, Long Bien Bridge under the gloomy golden sunshine makes a wonderful romantic masterpiece. The steel beams proudly rise to the sky in the afternoon sunlight, so spectacular it is that many photographers take advantage of these fantastic moments of the bridge to make their own artworks. In the evening when the city lights up, Long Bien bridge is glorious with its distinct charm. Many people like to stand on the bridge to enjoy the windy Red River, watching the city shimmering in the lights. The bridge also contributes to the vibrant life of the capital since it is the main artery for people on both sides of the bridge to travel back and forth. The influx of people, or the trains passing through everyday has formed an exclusive magnificence that you can find on nowhere else.
Especially on that bridge, in the wide space of the bridge, there would be “bridge vendors” occasionally, selling light night snacks such as grilled corn, potatoes, vegetables, etc. Especially in the wintry nights, the rows of grilled corn or boiled sweet potatoes will surely make you feel more cosy and you can let your soul flee in an endless space.
Means of transportation to go to Long Bien Bridge - Hanoi
You can visit this wonderful bridge by many different means
If traveling by personal vehicle (bicycle, motorbike) you can stop on the bridge to watch.
If you go by bus, you can take the following routes which have stops near this area: 01, 04, 14, 15, 22, 24, 34.47A, 47B, 55 ... with the ticket price of only 7,000 VND. More specifically, visitors can use the bus finder to search or access the website http://timbus.vn/ or use Google Map to search.