On the north-western side of the city of Edirne, on the Tunca River, the is the island of Sarayiçi. The ruins of the magnificent Sultan's Palace, Saray-ı Cedid-i Amire, are located there. Obviously, it was necessary to construct the bridges that would enable the Sultan and his entourage to get there from the mainland. Although the palace itself is no more, three historical stone bridges have preserved to our times and are still in use.
The oldest of these structures is Şahabeddin Pasha Bridge (tr. Şahabeddin Paşa Köprüsü) also known as Rooster Bridge (tr. Horozlu Köprüsü) and Leather Worker Shop Bridge (tr. Saraçhane Köprüsü). This bridge was built in 1451 on the orders of Şahabeddin Pasha, an important statesman from the rule of Sultan Murad II. The dedicatory inscription of the bridge indicates that Şahabeddin held the position of the vizier during the second term of Sultan Murad II’s reign.
Şahabeddin Pasha Bridge spans the banks of the Tunca River on the southern side of Sarayiçi Island, just before the point where the river splits into two branches that flow around the island (41.685612, 26.554308). It is 120 meters long, 5 meters wide, and its construction is supported on 11 piers and 12 arches. The bridge was first repaired during the reign of Sultan Mustafa II in 1706 and again, on the orders of Sultan Abdullah II, at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries. The last renovation of the bridge was carried out recently, in 2007.
To the north-east of Şahabeddin Bridge, the Tunca River forks off into two branches flowing on both sides of Sarayiçi Island. Mehmed the Conqueror Bridge (tr. Fatih Köprüsü) stands over the northern branch of the river (41.690204, 26.556357). This bridge was built on the orders of Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror, in 1452, just one year before the conquest of Constantinople. Its alternative name is Naïve Bridge (tr. Bönce Köprüsü). This stone bridge is supported on three arches, with the central arch larger than the others. It is about 34 meters long and 4 meters wide.
The bridge running over the branch of the Tunca River and linking the mainland to Sarayiçi is known as the Suleiman the Magnificient Bridge (tr. Kanuni Köprüsü) or the Palace Bridge (tr.Saray Köprüsü). It was built between 1553 and 1554 or in 1560. Although this bridge is not mentioned in the Ottoman-era lists of the works of Mimar Sinan, it figures in Ahmet Badi Efendi's work "Riyaz-ı Belde-i Edirne" as the construction of this famous architect. The bridge is supported on four arches. The entire structure is 60 meters long and 4.5 meters wide (41.687167, 26.558632). The bridge was severely damaged by the flood in 1902, and its last renovation was completed in 1990.
The bridges are situated near the Edirne Palace so follow the directions to this site, described in the text about the palace.