The Great Seto Bridge (Seto Ohashi) is a two-level bridge and viaduct complex – rail and road – completed in 1988, linking the islands of Honshu and Shikoku across the Seto Inland Sea on a series of five small islands in Japan. It is part of the largest suspension bridge in the world, and the longest 2-tier bridge in the world. Besides the impressive construction, there are some other points of interest in the vicinity as well.
The total length is 13.1 km and the average height of the pillars is 200 meters. It took 10 years to complete construction. To cross the bridge, a toll of 3,500 yen per way (approx. 30 USD) is charged to cross the bridge. Compared to the one-hour ferry between Uno and Takamatsu, the drive across the bridge takes only 15 minutes. The bridge is earthquake and typhoon proof.
Things to Do Near Seto Ohashi
Besides driving or riding over the bridge, you should not forget to stop by a few places of interest along the way! Near the start of the bridge at the Honshu side is Kurashiki, where you can find the Bikan Historical Quarter. Here, you can get a taste of how Japan must have felt in the Edo period. The nearby Ohara Museum of Art is great if you are interested in modern art. And do you like to wear jeans? Then Jeans Street in Kurashiki should be on your to-do list!
On the way to Shikoku, it is nice to make a stop on a small island called Yoshima for a walk outside. And in Shikoku, you can make a stop at 2 of the temples that are part of the Shikoku Pilgrimage route. Finally, you can visit the Seto Ohashi Museum if you want to learn more about the bridge itself.
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