Similar to the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Lupu Bridge also functions as a sightseeing attraction (although most foreigners don’t seem to know about it).
Opened in June 2003, Lupu is the longest steel arch bridge in the world, her 550-meter main span reaching gracefully over the Huangpu River. The bridge was controversial even before construction began. The design was expensive and many questioned if it was worth spending 2.5 billion yuan just to have bragging rights for the world’s longest arch bridge (it’s 32 meters longer the previous record holder, the New River Gorge Bridge in the United States).
Once there, a high-speed transparent elevator carries you up to the main deck of the bridge. After that, a quick 280-meter jaunt up the record-breaking arch takes you to the viewing platform, which is roughly the size of a basketball field. Breathtaking views of Puxi and Pudong make this trip definitely worthwhile.
During the day, climbing the bridge is a tourist attraction and costs RMB 100, but if you’re the adventurous type, try going at night, no one is there and you can go up for free (at your own risk). Ask your taxi driver to stop at the start of the arch. There is no real place to pull over so drivers may protest, ignore you and try to keep driving, so you’ll have to insist that they stop.
If you have visitors in town, this is makes for a bit of a devious good time. Pack a few cold ones and go up at night.