The Bridges of Esfahan
Abbas the Great was not only a great builder of mosques and gardens, but also a great builder of bridges. There are three famous bridges across the River Zayandeh built by Abbas and his successors, two of which we see here.
This is the Si-o-se Pol or thirty-three arch bridge built by Abbas the Great at the end of his grand new avenue the Cahar Bagh Avenue, which means four gardens. It was constructed from 1599 – 1602 and named after the man who supervised its construction Allah Verdi Khan. It always looks at its best in the evening when we saw it magically illuminated.
The bridge was a wide bridge with busy traffic, though today it has been pedestrianized. It became the main approach to the city along the new avenue where a caravanserai was built, now a grand hotel, the Abbasi, where we stayed.
The finest bridge of all is the Khaju Bridge, the most beautiful and well planned bridge of Esfahan. The bridge also acted as a dam: sluice gates between the piers close the canals raising the water level upstream so that large reserves could be collected for irrigating the fields.
The bridge also serves as a weir and a dam. When the sluice gates between the piers were closed the water level upstream was raised so that large reserves could be collected for irrigating the fields.
The niches on the road level form a convenient nook for canoodling with your girl friend.