The Puente Sampayo Bridge is a medieval bridge that crosses the Verdugo River between the civil parish of Ponte Sampaio in the municipality of Pontevedra and the civil parish of Arcade in the municipality of Soutomaior[1] in Spain.

Puente Sampayo Bridge

Puente de Puente Sampayo
Ponte Sampaio bridge in Pontevedra
Coordinates42°20′46″N 8°36′25″W / 42.345983°N 8.606833°W / 42.345983; -8.606833 (Puente Sampayo Bridge)
CarriesPedestrians, cars
CrossesVerdugo River
Localebetween Pontevedra and Soutomaior municipalities, Galicia, Spain
Total length144 m (472 ft)
Width10 m (33 ft)
Construction start11th century
Construction end18th century



The bridge is built on a Roman foundation.[2] The first references to this bridge date back to the 10th and 11th centuries,[3] when it was called "Ponti Sancti Pelagli de Lutto" (Bridge of San Paio de Lodo) and belonged to the Counts of Burgundy.[4] The mythical fortress of San Paio de Lodo was located near this bridge, the place where the armies of Queen Urraca of León and Archbishop Gelmírez fought. In 997, Almanzor crossed it, destroying the fortress that defended it.[5] Anyone wishing to cross the river by the bridge had to pay a toll, but thanks to the archbishop of Santiago de Compostela, Diego Gelmírez, this practice ended in the 12th century.

The bridge witnessed the Battle of Puente Sampayo against the French invasion, which took place on 7 and 8 June 1809 under intense gunfire on both banks of the Verdugo River and in which the French were defeated.[6][7]



It is a stone bridge 144 metres long[3] and ten metres wide. It has ten pointed arches with large starlings between them. It has a stone parapet[8] and was extensively modified and rebuilt in the 16th and 18th centuries.[4]

The bridge is part of the PO-264 road and belongs to the road network of the Xunta de Galicia.[1] The Portuguese Way to Santiago de Compostela crosses the bridge.[3]



In Pontevedra's Plaza de España stands the monument to the heroes of Puente Sampayo. The central granite part symbolises one of the pillars of the Puente Sampayo bridge, where most of the 1809 battle took place.[6]



  1. ^ a b "Un puente con varios «dueños» que se limpia por partes". La Voz de Galicia (in Spanish). 17 July 2015.
  2. ^ "El PSOE exige la «restauración inmediata» del puente medieval de Ponte Sampaio". La Voz de Galicia (in Spanish). 10 October 2015.
  3. ^ a b c "Reclaman un plan integral para el puente de Ponte Sampaio". La Voz de Galicia (in Spanish). 5 July 2022.
  4. ^ a b Riveiro Tobío 2008, p. 88
  5. ^ "Un anecdotario para Redondela". Faro (in Spanish). 23 January 2022.
  6. ^ a b "La batalla del puente Sampayo, cuando España aplastó a Napoleón en Galicia". ABC (in Spanish). 3 June 2014.
  7. ^ "La batalla de Ponte Sampaio". La Voz de Galicia (in Spanish). 6 June 2017.
  8. ^ "La Xunta reparará el puente medieval de Ponte Sampaio". La Voz de Galicia (in Spanish). 11 February 2014.

See also



  • Riveiro Tobío, Elvira (2008). Descubrir Pontevedra (in Spanish). Pontevedra: Edicións do Cumio. p. 88-89. ISBN 978-8482890852.