Römerbrücke, the oldest German bridge built by the Romans

Ever since I visited Trier a couple years ago, I am intrigued and fascinated in Germany’s ancient Roman history. About 1800 years ago, the Romans found a nice location at the Mosel river in Trier and built a bridge, the Römerbrücke. Sure, it’s not exactly the easiest construction project, but the Romans had immediate access to the roads on both sides of the river, which they were using as a trade route.

Trier was still named “Augusta Treverorum” under the Romans and the Römerbrücke bridge was an integral part of the Roman Empire. The bridge, built in the early 200s AD, has withstood medieval wars, the Thirty Year war, wars between local German rulers and France, Napoleonic wars, and world wars. It was never completely destroyed. The nine pillars that support the bridge are the same as almost 1900 years ago!

Römerbrücke, Roman bridge in Germany
Römerbrücke, Roman bridge in Germany

Its basalt pillars date back to the middle of the 2nd century. This makes it the oldest bridge in Germany. Admittedly, the Romans in Trier also experimented a bit at first. Two previous wooden bridges at this location, the oldest of which was directly linked to the founding of the city in 17 BC. was replaced by today’s stone pillars from 144 AD.

  • Old Roman bridge Germany
  • Römerbrücke at night (per Wikimedia
  • Römerbrücke pillar cross (per Wikimedia)
  • Römerbrücke areal view (per Wikimedia)
  • Römerbrücke, the Emperor 1893 (per Wikimedia)
  • Römerbrücke Kupferstich 1646 (per Wikimedia)
  • Römerbrücke Newspaper The Kurier 1815 (per Wikimedia)
  • Römerbrücke Ansichtskarte 1910 (per Wikimedia)
  • Old Roman bridge Germany sign
  • Roman bridge road

In Roman times they liked to throw coins into the river, a sacrifice to the goddess Mosella who lived there. Experts believe that a good million coins could still be hiding in the river bed today. Nowadays you are no longer allowed to dive after coins.

But its success story is unprecedented. In addition, there is a good chance that generations over generations people will continue to use this bridge and thus created a monument. To this day, the Roman Bridge is one of the city’s central junctions. Thousands of cars, cyclists and pedestrians cross the river here every day, just like millions of people over the past 1900 years.

A beautiful hiking trail and bike path connects the Roman bridge with the old fishing village of Zurlauben. The 1.5 km route past the old lifting cranes has a special charm. In addition, on the other bank of the Mosel river, high up on the Pulsberg, we saw the Maria column looking down. At the end of our walk, we were rewarded with a rustic cuisine and the Trier national drink Viez, a tart and sour apple wine.