Nearly 700 meters long and connecting two hills in the heart of Shan State at Nawnhkio is the Gokteik Viaduct. It is the tallest bridge in Myanmar and the world’s largest railway gantry at the time of its completion in 1900. One of Myanmar’s most impressive man-made structures was built over 100 years ago by the British and still stands today.
About 100 km from Mandalay, the bridge was manufactured by Pennsylvania Steel Co. and shipped overseas. The assembly was overseen by Sir Arthur Rendel, engineer of the Burma Railroad Company. The bridge has 14 towers with a span of 12 meters and a 24-meter long twin tower.
If you take the train from Mandalay to Hsipaw, you will cross this impressive structure at walking pace. A tradition under Burmese is to throw a bill out of the window during the crossing. This should bring luck.