Golden Gate Bridge
The Golden Gate Bridge bracing the Golden Gate, the strait linking the San Francisco bay with the Pacific Ocean, is one of the longest and the most stunning bridges in the entire world.
Naturally, this also makes it one of the most photographed bridges in the world. Designed by Strauss and Irving Morrow, this 1.7 mile suspension bridge can be accessed by foot, bicycles and cars. The bridge is flanked by parking as well as viewing areas for convenience.
The Golden Gate Bridge was completed after considerable time and expense; four years and an expenditure close to $35 million. The bridge had a grand opening on 28th May, 1937 with President Franklin D. Roosevelt pushing a telegraph key to kick start vehicle traffic over the bridge. The design of the bridge is based on an Art Deco Theme. The towers linking the suspension cables of the bridge are smaller, higher up than at the bottom, in order to highlight the tower altitude of 500 feet above the road level. The much adored color of the bridge is officially called international orange.
It was suitably picked by Irving Marrow to match the surroundings and to enhance visibility in foggy conditions.
The main suspension span of the bridge which is 4200 foot long made it the longest suspension bridge span for 27 years. Now, even though eight more bridges have longer span lengths, the Golden Gate Bridge still occupies the second position in the United States. It has also been inducted in the modern wonders of the world as per the American Society of Engineers. The two 746 feet tall towers of the bridge surpass the Washington monument by 191 feet. The bridge has five lanes, three of them leading into San Francisco in the morning and three exiting the city in the afternoon and evening. Toll is charged on the way into the city.
The Marin Headlands side of the Golden Gate Bridge is the perfect place to click photographs. This side offers panoramic views of Golden Gate Park, the twin peaks, Alcatraz Island, the Bay Bridge and more. You can also glimpse the numerous sailboats and freighters gliding below the bridge. Towards the south end of the bridge lies Fort Point, a National Historic monument since 16th October, 1970. This ancient structure was constructed out of brick during 1853-1861 for the purpose of protecting San Francisco from an attack via sea. Fort Point served as a platform for the building operations of the Golden Gate Bridge. In store for you is a scintillating view of the Fort Point Lighthouse from the roof of the Fort Point. This was only the second lighthouse to be built in California.
To feast your eyes on the exquisite features of the bridge, there are many city tours as well as double-decker bus tours up for grabs. These will either take you across the bridge or to the viewing areas. But the best way to see the bridge in its full glory is to hop aboard any San Francisco cruise. Almost every cruise passes below the bridge and promises an unforgettable vista.
Related websites and additional information:
- Official web page of Golden Gate Bridge
- Golden Gate Bridge by Wikipedia
- Golden Gate Transportation District
- Golden Gate National Recreation Area