Intrepid Wanderer

San Juanico Bridge: Linking Leyte and Samar, Connecting Luzon and Mindanao


San Juanico Bridge is a 2.16 kilometer (1.34 mi) bridge that links the two islands of Leyte and Samar as it stretches from barangay Cabalawan, Tacloban City on the Leyte side and Santa Rita Municipality on the Samar side across the San Juanico Strait in the Philippines. It is considered as the country’s longest bridge spanning a body of seawater.

San Juanico Bridge

San Juanico Bridge

I went here around 5pm on July 17, 2013. This was during my first time in Leyte and Samar, the 21st and and 22nd provinces on my list.

San Juanico Bridge

San Juanico Bridge

San Juanico Bridge’s is made of a steel girder viaduct built on reinforced concrete piers, and its main span is of an arch-shaped truss design. It has 43 spans and its large main arch rises 41 meters above the sea level. It is considered one of the most beautifully designed bridges in Philippines.

Marcos Bridge

Marcos Bridge

San Juanico Bridge was once called Marcos Bridge because the decision to build the bridge over  San San Juanico Strait was made during the Marcos administration. (It is said to have been presented by the late president to his wife as a gift and testimonial of love.)

Completed in 1973, construction of the 21.9 million-dollar bridge commenced in 1969 over San Juanico Strait from Cabalawan, Tacloban City to the municipality of Santa Rita, Samar, by the Construction and Development Corporation of the Philippines (now the Philippine National Construction Corporation) together with Japanese engineers when the two was awarded the contract to design, finance, and construct the bridge in 1968.

View of Cabalawan from San Juanico Bridge

View of Cabalawan from San Juanico Bridge

Part of the Pan-Philippine Highway (Maharlika Highway), San Juanico Bridge serves as a major gateway for trade and commerce between Leyte and Samar provinces. Through this bridge, it is now possible to travel by land straight from Luzon in the north of the Philippines to Mindanao in the south.

Welcome to Samar sign at San Juanico Bridge

Welcome to Samar sign at San Juanico Bridge

Looking at an elevated view of Samar and Leyte, including the San Juanico Strait below the bridge that has numerous islands (Read: Kabalawan Island) and whirlpools, the bridge offers picturesque views.

San Juanico Bridge and San Juanico Strait

San Juanico Bridge and San Juanico Strait

Welcome to Leyte sign at San Juanico Bridge

Welcome to Leyte sign at San Juanico Bridge

How to go to San Juanico Bridge

San Juanico Bridge is approximately 10 KM away from the city proper (downtown). From downtown, it is accessible by passenger jeepney, bus, motorcab, or private vehicle. You can ride a jeepney in front of the Public Market to Barangay Cabalawan.

A jeepney crossing San Juanico Bridge

A jeepney crossing San Juanico Bridge

San Juanico Bridge leading to Sta Rita

San Juanico Bridge leading to Sta Rita

San Juanico Bridge leading to Santa Rita

San Juanico Bridge leading to Santa Rita

San Juanico Bridge leading to Santa Rita

San Juanico Bridge leading to Santa Rita

The road at San Juanico Bridge

The road at San Juanico Bridge

San Juanico Bridge and San Juanico Strait

San Juanico Bridge and San Juanico Strait

San Juanico Bridge seen from Leyte

San Juanico Bridge seen from Leyte

Marcos Bridge Marker

Marcos Bridge Marker

San Juanico Bridge PNP checkpoint in Leyte

San Juanico Bridge PNP checkpoint in Leyte

Welcome to San Juanico Bridge

Welcome to San Juanico Bridge

Marcos Bridge

Marcos Bridge

After going back to Cabalawan’s end of the bridge, I took a jeepney ride back to the city center (downtown) to spend my first night in Tacloban at GV Hotel.

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2 Responses so far.

  1. Christeen says:

    I wonder if you can ask the jeepney driver to drop you off sa bridge,and if you are allowed to take a ride from the middle of the bridge going back?

  2. dennis says:

    Bakit naman nila pinapayagan bumiyahe yun jeep na may ganun kadami pasahero, kawawa naman yun mga batang estudyande pati sa bubugan pano na lang kung maaksidente at mawalan ng preno yun jeep,direcho silang mahulog sa tulay..Naku huwag naman po sana mangyari..tsk tsk tsk. please naman huwag na pahintulutan yang ganyan..alam ko bawal yan..please mga kababayan ko taga-Leyte at Samar, mga taga Tacloban, ang mga mayor, vice mayor, mga kagawad at mga baranggay chairman please gumawa naman tayo ng aksyon..Please lang.

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