Sisto Bridge in Rome
Ponte Sisto, or Sisto Bridge, is one of the most popular bridges in Rome crossing the Tiber River and connecting Rome’s historic centre with Trastevere. It offers one of the most beautiful perspectives on St. Peter’s Church and Rome’s skyline .
Ponte Sisto was rebuilt on the ruins of an earlier Roman bridge, “Pons Aurelio” dating back to 215 A.D, built under the Emperor Antonino, who wanted to connect the two river banks.
Unfortunately the bridge was destroyed in 792 due to flooding of the Tiber and then abandoned.
|Credits: image by @kirkandmimi|
|Location: Piazza Trilussa, 00153 Rome in Trastevere Area|
|Tickets: Not Needed|
However, many centuries later, in 1475, on the Jubilee Year, Pope Sixtus IV commissioned the architect Baccio Pontelli to rebuild the bridge, hence its name. The bridge was considered necessary to allow into the Vatican City the Pilgrims arriving from the left side of the river.
Before Ponte Sisto was built in 1475, Romans used a sort of small ferry to connect the two river banks.
Structure & Features
Ponte Sisto features four big arches and the so-called “Occhialone”, a characteristic circular “Big Eye”, which was used to measure the water level of the river.
This was basically a warning system to alert Roman people against a possible overflowing of the river.
Moreover, the bridge Ponte is made by tuff stone covered by travertine marble. It is 108 meters in length and it’s a pedestrian bridge.