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Meganebashi Bridge 眼鏡橋

Megane Bridge Megane Bridge
Megane Bridge Megane Bridge

An all-seeing bridge that spans a host of riverside pleasures

Said to be one of the oldest stone arched bridges in Japan, Meganebashi stretches across Nakashima River and is one of Nagasaki's most photogenic tourist attractions. The name means "Spectacles Bridge," because the reflection of the arches in the water looks like a pair of eyeglasses. Although floodwaters severely damaged the bridge in a 1982 disaster, it was rebuilt using the same stones.

The riverside area around Meganebashi is lined with places to eat and shop on both banks, and is perfect for a half-day jaunt.

Don't Miss

  • Dining and people watching at one of the riverside cafes
  • The hidden heart stones, said to bring good luck in love

How to Get There

Meganebashi is just a short walk from the Nigiwaibashi tram stop on the Ishibashi (green) streetcar line.

Perfect for ambling

The oldest stone bridges constructed in Japan, Meganebashi is said to have been built in 1634 by a Chinese monk named Mokusu Nyoujo, who later became the abbot of nearby Kofukuji Temple. A stroll around Meganebashi and its group of stone bridges along the tree-lined Nakashima River will have you musing about the old world. Koi and turtles make occasional appearances beneath the bridges, adding to the ambiance.

Make a riverside pit stop

Along the banks of the Nakashima River you'll find many souvenir shops, old merchant buildings, small restaurants and quaint cafes. Of particular note are the many shops and cafes specializing in castella, a buttery Portuguese-inspired pound cake and popular treat from the Nagasaki region .

The secret language of love

While you're on the bridge, keep an eye out for heart-shaped stones in the river walls. Hidden all around the city, the stones are said to bring good luck, happiness and eternal love for those lucky enough to find them.

Everything is illuminated

Meganebashi and her sister bridges are lit up by the soft glow of lights at night, giving them a romantic and nostalgic feel. However, they are never so beautifully lit as during the Nagasaki Lantern Festival. With cranes, koi and lotus lanterns lighting a path to the bridge, the event is sure to delight anyone lucky enough to be in the area at the time.

* The information on this page may be subject to change due to COVID-19.

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