Built in 1942 and destroyed by US attacks in 1968, all that remains of this bridge -- named after Laos' Red Prince -- are one section of the steel structure and the concrete supports running across the wide but fairly shallow river.
If you have your own transport this is certainly worth visiting as the road, while unsealed, is in reasonably good condition. Without your own transport, it is tricky as the buses to Tumlan leave erratically and are not at all reliable -- you're probably better off trying to hire transport in Salavan for the trip.
From the bus station, take Route 15 to the west for 10 kilometres. At the sign pointing to Xe Bang Nouan Protected Area, turn right and follow the dirt road for a further 10 kilometres. As you near the bridge, take a right at the fork in the road – it’s the only confusing fork you’ll come across on the journey, so you’ll know it when you get to it. The river can be crossed with a bike using the ferry or you can simply walk across if you want a different view.
By Adam Poskitt
Last updated on 23rd August, 2015.