Queen Emma Bridge
The famous Swinging Old Lady, is a bridge floating on 16 small pontoons in the St. Anna Bay and it is the only floating wooden bridge in the world. The bridge was built in 1888, and since then multiple times renovated. The bridge, called ‘Pontjesbrug’ by the locals, is the only connection in the city center between the neighborhoods of Punda and Otrobanda.
The bridge was originally a toll bridge, accessible for cars and pedestrians. Pedestrians without shoes where granted access for free. When the Queen Juliana Bridge officially opened in 1974, Queen Emma was closed to vehicals. Nowadays the bridge is only accessible for pedestrians and free for all. It has an average of 10 to 20 thousand pedestrians a day.
If a vessel must pass through the St. Anna Bay, the bridge will start to close for pedestrians. You will hear the bells ringing and the flag will show you how long the bridge will stay open; Orange flag means that the bridge will stay open for 5-10 minutes, and the blue flags means it will take longer. The bridge's engine is put into operation and everyone will be brought to the other side by the ferries which are also located on the Handelskade.
Take a seat on one of the restaurants at the Handelskade and enjoy the ‘Swining Old Lady’ in action or admire the bridge at night when the lights are on.