These Are the Highest Bridges in the Entire World

Highest Bridges
© A-Z-Animals.com/AZ Animals

Written by Oak Simmons

Published: November 21, 2023

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Beware, those afraid of heights! This article explores the highest bridges in the world, including their location, history, and some of the fascinating animals that live below them. Before we begin, let’s discuss the difference between bridge height and tallness. A bridge’s height is the distance between its deck and the ground or water beneath it. On the other hand, a bridge’s tallness is its structural height, which is the height of the structure itself. If a bridge spans a deep gorge, but its piers do not reach down to the bottom of the gorge, it may be high but not necessarily tall. That is the case for many of the bridges on this list, which span deep gorges but have piers built on the rims of the gorge rather than in the center.

Now, let’s explore the dizzying heights of the 10 highest bridges in the world.

10. Baling River Bridge

Baling River Bridge

With a deck height of 1,210 feet, the Baling River Bridge is the 10th-highest bridge in the world.

©Glabb / CC BY-SA 3.0 DEED - License

The Baling River Bridge spans the Baling River Valley in the mountainous Guizhou province of China. It carries the G60 Shanghai–Kunming Expressway, a 1,470-mile-long highway that runs from the Minhang District of Shanghai to Kunming in the Yunnan province. The Baling River Bridge officially opened on December 23, 2009. Before the Baling River Bridge opened, it took one hour to drive from one side of the gorge to the other. It now takes just four minutes! The river and forest beneath the bridge are home to many animals including the Guizhou salamander, white-capped water redstart, and common carp.

9. Liuguanghe Xiqian Expressway Bridge

Liuguanghe Xiqian Expressway Bridge

With a deck height of 1,230 feet, the Liuguanghe Xiqian Expressway is the ninth-highest bridge.

©HighestBridges / CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED - License

The Liuguanghe Xiqian Expressway Bridge spans the Wu River in the Guizhou province of China. It carries the Xiqian Expressway, a part of China’s massive network of highways. The Liuguanghe Xiqian Expressway Bridge officially opened in 2017. Below the Liuguanghe Xiqian Expressway Bridge, the forest and river are home to many interesting animals including the Chinese giant salamander, Chinese golden monkey, and pangolin.

8. Baluarte Bridge

Baluarte Bicentennial Bridge

Baluarte Bridge is the highest bridge in Mexico and the eighth-highest bridge in the world.

©Gladys_Glez/iStock via Getty Images

The Baluarte Bridge spans the Baluarte River in northern Mexico. It runs from Concordia in the state of Sinaloa to Pueblo Nuevo in the state of Durango. It carries the Federal Highway 40, a 712-mile-long highway that runs from the state of Tamaulipas to the state of Sinaloa. Construction of the Baluarte Bridge lasted from 2008 until the bridge officially opened in 2013. The Baluarte River and the surrounding area are home to many interesting animals including coyotes, the American badger, and the Sinaloa toad.

7. Hegigio Gorge Pipeline Bridge

Hegigio Gorge Pipeline Bridge

This incredible Hegigio Gorge Pipeline Bridge is the highest pipeline bridge in the world.

©Hegigio / CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED - License

The Hegigio Gorge Pipeline Bridge is the only bridge on this list that does not carry a highway. Instead, the Hegigio Gorge Pipeline Bridge carries a petroleum pipeline. In 2005, the Hegigio Gorge Pipeline Bridge opened in Papua New Guinea, becoming the new highest bridge in the world. The 1,289-foot-high pipeline bridge was the highest in the world from 2005 to 2009. Some of the interesting animals living near the Hegigio Gorge Bridge are the Raggiana bird of paradise, the Papuan black snake, and the New Guinea crocodile.

6. Qingshui River Bridge

Qingshui River Bridge

With a deck height of 1,332 feet, the Qingshui River Bridge is the sixth-highest in the world.

©HighestBridges / CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED - License

The Qingshui River Bridge spans the Qingshui River in the Guizhou province of China. It carries the Guiweng Expressway. The Qingshui River Bridge officially opened in December of 2015. It reduced the distance between Guiyang and Weng’an County from 99 miles to 24 miles. The Qingshui River and the surrounding area are home to many interesting animals including the pangolin, the Chinese alligator, and the Chinese giant salamander.

5. Yachi River Bridge

Beautiful shot of Yachi River Bridge crossing the Yachi River

With a deck height of 1,424 feet, the Yachi River Bridge is the fifth-highest bridge in the world.

©Wirestock/iStock via Getty Images

The Yachi River Bridge spans the Wu River in the Guizhou province of China. It carries the Guiyang-Qianxi Expressway. In addition to being the fifth-highest bridge in the world, it is also the fifth-longest cable-stayed bridge in the world. The Yachi River Bridge officially opened in July of 2016. The Wu River and surrounding area are home to many interesting animals including the brown-breasted bulbul, Eurasian tree sparrow, and the Asian small-clawed otter.

4. Jin’an Bridge

Great Bend of the Jinsha River

The Jin’an Bridge spans the beautiful Jinsha River.

©166/iStock via Getty Images

With a deck height of 1,512 feet, the Jin’an Bridge is the fourth-highest bridge in the world. It spans the Jinsha River in the Yunnan province of China. The Jin’an Bridge carries the G4216 Chengdu–Lijiang Expressway. It officially opened in 2020, making it the youngest bridge on this list. The Jinsha River and the surrounding area are home to some unique wildlife including the stump-tailed macaque, the red panda, and the Yunnan nuthatch.

3. Puli Bridge

Puli Bridge

With a deck height of 1,591 feet, the Puli Bridge is the third-highest bridge in the world.

©HighestBridges / CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED - License

The Puli Bridge spans the Gexiang River Gorge in the Yunnan province of China. It carries the G56 Hangzhou–Ruili Expressway, a 1,824-mile-long highway that runs from Hangzhou in the Zhejiang province to Ruili in the Yunnan province. The Puli Bridge officially opened in August of 2015. It reduced travel time from Xuanwei to the border of the Guizhou province from four hours to just one hour. The river and forest beneath the bridge are home to many interesting animals including the emperor newt, Yunnan box turtle, and Chinese water dragon.

2. Sidu River Bridge

Sidu River Bridge

The Sidu River Bridge was the highest in the world until the Duge Bridge opened in 2016.

©Eric Sakowski / CC BY-SA 3.0 DEED - License

Sidu River Bridge spans the Sidu River Valley in the Hubei province of China. It carries the G50 Shanghai–Chongqing Expressway, a highway that runs 1,200 miles from Shanghai to Chongqing. The Sidu River Bridge was previously the highest bridge in the world, from the time it opened in 2009 until 2020. The Sidu River Vally and the surrounding mountains are home to some of China’s most unique and rare animals including the snow leopard and the Asian black bear.

1. Duge Bridge

Duge Bridge

With a deck height of 1,854 feet, the Duge Bridge is the highest bridge in the world.

©ShakyIsles / CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED - License

The Duge Bridge, located at the border of the Guizhou and Yunnan provinces in southwestern China, is the tallest bridge in the world. At 1,854 feet, it is over a quarter of a mile high! It spans the Beipan River, which is part of the Pearl River system. The Duge Bridge carries the G56 Hangzhou–Ruili Expressway, a highway that runs 1,824 miles from Hangzhou in the Zhejiang province to Ruili in the Yunnan province. The Duge Bridge officially opened in 2020, overtaking the Sidu River Bridge as the highest bridge in the world. The Beipan River and the mountains that surround it are home to some interesting animal species, including the Chinese blackbird, the Chinese green snake, and the Asian swamp eel.

Summary Table of the Highest Bridges In the World

Here is a recap of the 10 highest bridges in the world:

RankBridgeDeck HeightOpenedLocation
10Baling River Bridge1,210 feet2009Guizhou Province, China
9Liuguanghe Xiqian Expressway Bridge1,230 feet2017Guizhou Province, China
8Baluarte Bridge1,280 feet2013Durango and Sinaloa, Mexico
7Hegigio Gorge Pipeline Bridge1,289 feet2005Southern Highlands, Papua New Guinea
6Qingshui River Bridge1,332 feet2015Guizhou Province, China
5Yachi River Bridge1,424 feet2016Guizhou Province, China
4Jin’an Bridge1,512 feet2020Yunnan Province, China
3Puli Bridge1,591 feet2015Yunnan Province, China
2Sidu River Bridge1,627 feet2009Hubei Province, China
1Duge Bridge1,854 feet2016Guizhou and Yunnan Provinces, China


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About the Author

Oak Simmons is a writer at A-Z Animals primarily covering North American wildlife and geography. They graduated from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 2018 with a Bachelor of Science in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. A resident of Washington state, Oak enjoys tracking mammals and watching birds.

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