Kochi Prefecture: Shimanto River’s submersible bridges
高知県 四万十川 沈下橋
A meandering river and the people who live nearby
In the southeastern part of Shikoku is the longest river on the island: the Shimanto, which twists for 196 kilometers through the valley below the towering mountains. Executing extreme contortions, the river’s path creates sheer cliffs on one side, reflected by beautiful white pebbled riverbeds on the other. It is a repeating rhythm of tree-covered precipices and stony beaches. From time to time, rugged rocky stretches appear on the river’s surface, creating perilous passes for the navigation of small boats. When I visited in the summer, the flow was sluggish and the river low, perhaps because of the heat wave and continuing drought.