Long Bien Bridge – The Legendary Relic of the Vietnam War

For citizen of Hanoi, Long Bien Bridge has become something more precious than a crossing between the center to the other side of Red River. It is a witness, and even a victim of the cruel Vietnam war for the unification of the country. As a result, in this post, we will share with you all details about this special destination.

Things to Do and See on Long Bien Bridge

There are not many activities that you can do while visiting Long Bien Bridge. However, you can contemplate lots of remarkable things there.

First of all, it is a must-visit place if you want to learn about the French Colonial architecture. The bridge was built by the French to create the strategic tools ensuring the control of northern Vietnam. Nowadays, the bridge is the greatest example of such architectural style with some parts remaining intact. You can walk on the small pavement on the side of the road, see the bridge up-close, and touch its iron if you are interested.

Long Bien BridgeThe Outlook of Long Bien Bridge

Other than a historical destination, Long Bien Bridge is famous as a place to watch the sunset or dawn. The view to the vast Red River is incredible at both of those times in the day added with the natural surroundings. This will be a perfect opportunity for photographers to hunt down the best scene during their travel to Vietnam. It is no doubt that this location has the mix beauty of the man-made creation and nature.

Long Bien Bridge 1Sunset on The River

Next, you can immerse in the busy life of the local people while walking from the start to the end of the bridge. Many scooters on the way carrying various products to the city and the train are still active on the bridge. The concrete path on the side may be old, but it further enriches your experience on Long Bien Bridge. Furthermore, there are food vendors selling simple local foods like steamed corn for you to enjoy.

Long Bien Bridge 2Local Selling Corn as Food

From Long Bien Bridge, there are plenty of well-known locations nearby such as Bat Trang Pottery Village or Hanoi Ceramic Road. Take your time and explore the relics of Hanoi.

Long Bien Bridge 4Favorite Photography Location for the Young

Interesting Facts about Long Bien Bridge

Although built by the French, most of the workers (about 3000 people) participating in the construction were Vietnamese. It took everyone 3 years to complete the bridge, though the estimated time was 5 years. 

People (even Vietnamese) often mistake the popular Gustave Eiffel who designed the Eiffel Tower as an architect of Long Bien Bridge. However, it was designed by architects from Daydé & Pillé companies. Levallois-Perret Company where Gustave Eiffel worked did apply a design for the bridge, but was not chosen.

Long Bien Bridge 5Daydé & Pillé Sign on the Bridge

During the Vietnam War, the US realized the strategic position as it was the only bridge connecting Hanoi to the city port Haiphong) and decided to destroy it. From 1967, Long Bien Bridge was bombarded yet remained usable by the Vietnamese. It was not until May 1972 that the US decided to use the first attack using “smart bomb” guiding by laser. Afterward, Long Bien Bridge was rendered useless for one year. Because of the harsh time during the war, Long Bien is considered to be the symbol of Hanoi people’s courageous. 

Long Bien Bridge 6Long Bien Bridge in 1940

After more than 100 years old, the bridge is surprisingly still being used by a lot of people and the train. 

Long Bien Bridge 8Train Still Running

Travel Tips from Hanoi Old Quarter

Rent a motorbike to travel to Long Bien Bridge is one great option as it has reasonable price and you can travel to another location comfortablely. There are a few places to stop on the bridge, thus you do not have to worry about where to take a picture.

Taxi is easily accessible in Hanoi Old Quarter, however, they will only drop you on the path leading up to the bridge. From there, you will have to walk on foot and catch another taxi back to your hotel.