Kölner Aussicht – Tokyo, Japan - Atlas Obscura

Kölner Aussicht

Since Tokyo's Kiyosu Bridge was inspired by a historic bridge that crossed over the Rhine, this viewing spot is known as a "view of Cologne." 


Prior to its collapse during World War II, the Deutz Suspension Bridge on the Rhine in Cologne was considered by many to be the world’s most beautiful bridge. So it’s no wonder that a few contemporaneous bridges overseas were influenced by and modeled after it, namely the Three Sisters in Pittsburgh and the Kiyosu Bridge in Tokyo.

Planned as part of Tokyo’s attempt to reconstruct the city following the devastating 1923 earthquake, which had caused over 140,000 deaths, the bridge was specially designed with seismic resistance and durability in mind and meant to be a symbol of hope and recovery.

The best location to view the Kiyosu Bridge from, according to the city, is a little spot off the Mannen Bridge, which stands almost parallel to it. Officially called the Kölner Aussicht, or “view of Cologne,” it is believed to offer the most attractive view of the bridge crossing the Sumida River, a sight not unlike that of the German city.

Although this “Cologne view” itself is somewhat difficult to achieve today because of the modern redevelopment of the area, with tall buildings all around hindering the view, you can still walk down to the riverside promenade or on the Mannen Bridge to see the Kiyosu Bridge in all its glory, an unexpected, lesser-known little taste of Germany in the historic downtown of Tokyo.

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August 3, 2022

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