Cable Car Rides – a chance to see the sights and engage in a thrilling experience all in one trip. Some of the best views that Mother Nature working with hand in hand with geography are only accessible from on high. Other panoramic scenes may be familiar in general, but seeing them on a cable car ride gives them a new and exciting perspective. Over river valleys, traversing mountain gaps and from cliff to cliff or simply scaling a steep incline on a city street, cable cars might be as functional as they are pleasurable. With funiculars around the world offering stunning views at staggering heights, here are 7 Best Scenic and Thrilling Cable Car Rides.
1. Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
Take this cable car ride to the top of Sugarloaf Mountain and you will not be disappointed. Presented with views of Rio’s packed city 396 meters below, it is the sight of the statue of Christ the Redeemer that makes this cable ride one of the most magnificent. Sunset is the best time to visit when the sky becomes dark and the city lights spring to life illuminating the Christ in all his glory.
2. The Peak Tram, Hong Kong, China
This cable car ride is over 100 years old and one of the most popular attractions in Hong Kong. The journey up Victoria Peak hits an impressive 27 degree incline and takes seven minutes to reach the summit. Once at the top, from Hong Kong’s highest point, you are afforded breath-taking views. Sit at one of the glass windowed restaurants for delicious sushi or try a cocktail at the peak whilst saturating yourself in the stunning views this cable ride provides.
3. Powell-Hyde Line, San Francisco, California
Powell-Hyde Line is the perfect cable car ride for anyone not wanting to leave the ground. San Francisco’s cable car network is famous for being the world’s only remaining ‘permanently operational manually operated cable car system’. Cutting a route across the city through Nob-Hill, Union Square, Fisherman’s Wharf and North Beach, this a great way to get around and hit the key tourist areas all while traveling on an iconic feature of San Franciscan life.
4. Table Mountain Cableway, Cape Town, South Africa
Table Mountain’s Cableway may not reach the same staggering heights as other cable cars, but it does offer the unique function of a floor that rotates a full 360 degrees giving spectacular panoramas on the way up. This popular tourist attraction is set within the National Park, which features paths at the top providing plenty more chances to view the stunning vistas awaiting at the end of this cable car ride.
5. Grindelwald-Männlichen Cableway, Switzerland
Whilst Grindelwald-Männlichen Cableway is impressively the third longest passenger gondola lift, it is the views that are the true winner of this cable car ride. The thirty-minute journey travels between two destinations starting in a small village sitting 943 meters above sea level and ending in a ski region with magnificent views of the Swiss Alps provided along the way.
6. Mérida, Venezuela
Mérida’s cable car ride has the enviable title of being the longest and tallest in the world and as such it might be a good idea to pack a picnic for the one-hour ascent. The summit is a plateau within the Andes mountain range, Mountain Pico Espejo and as you would expect from this famous set of mountains, the views provided at the end of this cable ride will not disappoint.
7. Gulmarg Gondola, Jammu and Kashmir
The starting point for this cable car ride, at 2,730 meters above sea level in the north-west Himalayas, immediately sets this cable ride apart from all the others. Gulmarg Gondola’s name, meaning Meadow of Flowers, may not reflect the pine-forest location of this cable ride if you visit in winter but being the world’s highest cable car, the views on offer are likely to leave you with nothing else on your mind beyond the 3,980 meters below.
As you can see, a cable car ride might mean you being suspended in mid-air hundreds of feet off the ground in a cabin (gondola) (don’t think about how thin those steel hawsers seem!), or traveling along well worn tracks on terra firma. Each is different and each presents a unique view on the world. Have you had the pleasure of traveling on any of these 7 Best Scenic and Thrilling Cable Car Rides?
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