I’ve been on a whole devil’s bridge kick lately, especially after I visited the one in Sedona. So, I figured today I’d write about one that I find the most fascinating. 

While I haven’t been to see Rakotzbrücke in Germany myself, it’s certainly my dream to visit someday. 

This bridge is majestic. It looks like something straight out of a fairytale world. Just go on Instagram, and you’ll see tons of travel influencers posting pics of its shape reflecting off the river below, forming the image of it making a complete circle.

It’s said that the architects of the 1800s built it with the intention of having this look. It’s impressive they had the tools and technology to be able to pull it off back then. Even now, every modern architect will still marvel at the design. 

The History of Rakotzbrücke

Rakotzbrücke was commissioned in 1860 by a German knight, Friedrich Hermann Rotschke. He loved nature and gothic architecture, dreaming up the look of this beautiful semi-circle masterpiece. It’s now part of Kromlauer Park in eastern Germany, which is full of great sights and is a nature lover’s dream, so I’m sure Friedrich Rotschke would be very pleased with that.  

In total, it took 10 years to build the bridge. It’s constructed from basalt stone and secured with wooden beams at the base. 

Rakotzbrücke Base Construction

The complexity of building bridges like this one is why they are referred to as devil’s bridges. They all take on similar traits of being long, curved bridges that stretch across a space that doesn’t seem like it should be possible to support their construction. People say the only way they could be possible is if the devil himself had a hand in it. 

Old folk tales say that an old woman signed a pact with the devil when she lost her cow and saw it grazing on the other side of the river. She had no way to get to it, so the devil built a bridge to get to the other side. However, there was a catch. The first person to cross it would lose their life. Thinking she found a loophole, the woman sent a dog across first. This infuriated the devil, and he left an eternal curse on it. 

To this day, people still don’t cross Rakotzbrücke because of this tale. They even made the surrounding area hard to reach the bridge just to prevent people from crossing it. Tales also say that those who sail under the bridge may uncover the devil’s mystic abilities when there’s a full moon. 

Needless to say, while crossing the bridge isn’t an option when you go see it, there is still plenty of reason to appreciate it from afar. You’ll still get some great pics and a magical view while soaking in the natural environment all around.