Switzerland now holds the world record for the longest pedestrian suspension bridge, following the opening of an awe-inspiring structure which spans the Zermatt Valley in the Swiss Alps.

The Zermatt, Switzerland, tourism office announced the opening of the Charles Kuonen Suspension Bridge, which is 1,621 feet long and reaches a height of 7,218 feet above sea level at the peak of its 279-foot incline.

At the bridge’s official debut on July 29, Daniel Luggen, director of Zermatt Tourism, said, “How often do you get the chance to cross a real world-record suspension bridge? The thrill experienced high over the precipice is indescribable.”

Constructed by Swissrope in just 10 weeks, the bridge is a part of the Europaweg trail connecting the towns of Zermatt and Grächen. Edith Zweifel, a spokesperson for the travel board, said the bridge shortens the journey across the valley from three or four hours to just 10 minutes.

According to the Zermatt tourism office, those with an aversion to heights might want to avoid crossing the bridge, because “it is possible to look into the precipice below one’s feet” through the lower grates of the structure.

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Adrenaline-seekers making the hike will enjoy views of the Matterhorn as they walk from Zermatt from Grächen. Those heading in the opposite direction will be treated to a panorama of the Bernese Alps, which surround the “deepest-cut valley in Switzerland.”

Zweifel recommended that “people who have problems with a fear of heights, they have to close their eyes, or have someone to walk just behind.”

At just over two feet wide, the bridge is single-file only.

The Zermatt tourism office said hikers should avoid crossing the bridge during storms because of the threat of lightning.

The bridge is named after the project’s primary sponsor, psychologist and winery co-owner Charles Kuonen, and replaces a nearby bridge that was damaged by falling rocks and closed in 2010.

In total, the Charles Kuonen Suspension Bridge cost more than $775,000 to construct.

While the new pedestrian suspension bridge holds the world record for length, it was not the first to be constructed in the majestic mountains of Switzerland. The Titlis Cliff Walk along the alpine Mount Titlis in Engelberg is 10,000 feet above sea level and allows those walking along its 328-foot span to peer into “the abyss of the south wall.”

Thrill seekers can also head to the French Alps to experience the Aiguille du Midi Bridge, a dizzying is 12,500 feet above sea level. The attraction features an adjoining glass skywalk called “Step Into the Void” and takes a 20-minute ride on a cable car to reach.

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