A road with countless tunnels on Ponti di Vara to transport marble to the quarry

Originally built as a railway tunnel, the historic Vara Bridge was constructed in 1876 for marble transportation to the quarries of Carrara, Italy. Today, the bridge is used by trucks and vehicles. It’s one of the most spectacular bridges in the world.

Vara Bridge

How long is Ponti di Vara?

Located in Tuscany, to the east of Carrara, a town famous for the white or blue-grey marble quarried, the bridge is 109m (359ft) long. It’s entirely paved. Trucks loaded with marble constantly pass over. The route is carefully planned, and the roads are all one-way to allow vehicles to work without interruptions. The bridge has a maximum height from the valley floor of 38 meters and features five semicircular arches, each with a span of 16 meters.

When was Ponti di Vara built?

Built in 1890 to complete the former Marmifera railway, the railway network used to transport marble extracted from the quarries to the port of Marina di Carrara. The Vara bridge was the nerve center of the Marmifera railway and represented the modernization of transportation. In the thirties, they were the target of a dynamite attack by a group of workers (the bovari) who still transported marble with oxen. Frustrated by the competition from Marmifera, they tried to bring down the main viaduct. The attack failed but caused damage to three of the four arches of the bridge.

Where was Quantum of Solace filmed?

According to a "Marmo News" research, the marble newspaper, it seems that the Vara bridge and the Marmifera were also filmed in 1897 by an Apuan agent of the Lumière brothers. According to the online source, the film was found in Brussels by the director Fabio Wuytiak. The location is so evocative that it was used to shoot the beginning of "Quantum of Solace," the 2008 film starring Daniel Craig as the 007 James Bond.

What’s Galleria Ponti di Vara?

Located in the central part of the country, the bridge carries a stunning 5.5km (3.41 miles) long road, running from Miseglia to the quarry. It’s entirely paved and very narrow, featuring countless unlit tunnels. It’s a one-way road, known as Galleria Ponti di Vara.