Two days ago I visited the Nanjing Eye Pedestrian Bridge (南京眼步行桥 or 南京眼 in short) with a group of friends. I visited it once before – a few years ago, precisely in November of 2014. At that time, it had only been open for a few months and was mostly empty.
This time, however, the place was packed (especially at the beginning of the bridge, where people took the most pictures) – partly because it was a Saturday, but also because it was during the Golden Week (a week starting on October, 1st which marks the National Day in China – the anniversary of establishing People’s Republic of China; most people are given 3 days of paid leave but in order to let people have 7 days of a continuous break the work days are rearranged – for instance, the weekend preceding the holiday is determined to be a working weekend for every one).
The Nanjing Eye Pedestrian Bridge, as already mentioned, was opened in 2014. It is situated in Jianye district of Nanjing, west of the city center, in an area called “New Town of Hexi” – a modern, economically – developed part of Nanjing filled with skyscrapers, government headquarters and new apartment buildings. The bridge is over 800 meters long and extends from the Nanjing Youth Olympic Village (南京青奥村) to an island on Yangtze River called Jiangxinzhou (江心洲). It is only open for people and no vehicles are allowed (hence the name). According to Baidu Encyclopedia, the construction of the bridge is so strong that it can hold 40 000 people at the same time.
- Location of the bridge on Baidu Maps
Next to the Nanjing Eye there you can see the stunning building of Najing International Youth Cultural Center (南京国际青年艺术中心 ).
The bridge doesn’t have any admission fee and is open from 9 AM to 10 PM. The hoops on the bridge are lit with changing colors in the evening and that’s probably when it’s best to visit the bridge.
For comparison, you can see how the bridge looked like 4 years ago, shortly after opening (the phone I used back then didn’t have a very good camera so the quality is rather bad):
How to get there: The best way is to go to Yuantong metro station (元通) on metro line 2 or 10, get off and change to a bus number 102 or 109, then ride for 4 stops (bus stop 青年文化中心东门 for bus no. 102 and bus stop 国际青年文化中心 for bus no. 109) – when you get off the bus you can see the Eye so you can walk in that direction. You can also get off on Yuantong station and walk for 2 km.
Is it worth to go there: I think it is! The Nanjing Eye has become one of the symbols of the city and is a popular destination both for tourists and local people as well. Even though it is rather far from the center, the bridge and its surroundings do look beautiful in the evening. If you have more time you can first visit the Olympic Village and then go south to reach the bridge.