Rialto Bridge

Rialto Bridge is the oldest of all four bridges across the Grand Canal in Venice, Italy. This 3800 meters long canal makes a large reverse S shape. The construction of the bridge began in 1588 and completed in 1591. It took about 3 years to construct the bridge from start to finish because of the unstable conditions.


The original structure was built in 1255 and it was made of timber. The present day bridge is made of stone. The bridge was designed by Swiss born Venetian engineer Antonio de Ponte. It is 75 feet wide with the arch height of 24 feet and its longest span is over 94 feet long.



Quick Facts: –

  • Rialto Bridge is built on the narrowest point across the Grand Canal. It connects the districts of San Polo and San Marco.
  • The bridge has two inclined ramps with stairs. These stairs lead to Central Portico that has shops on both sides.
  • The bridge has three different paths including one wide central walkway and two along the railings.
  • The area where the bridge is located is one of the first locations in Venice to be constructed.
  • The funds needed to build the bridge came from different sources including an early variation of lottery as well.
  • It is built as a single pan which made people think that it could collapse at any stage.
  • The bridge is still renowned as an architectural and engineering achievement of the Renaissance.
  • The bridge has inspired many artists and it appeared in many paintings including Miracle of the Relic of the Cross at the Ponte di Rialto by Italian Renaissance artist Vittore Carpaccio.