Though Ziplining and Via Ferratas used to only be used for working purposes and to get from point A to point B, they now are a popular attraction for tourists looking to view their vacation spot in a new, venturesome way. Zipline tours have been around for quite some time now, but Via Ferrata is just now sneaking it’s way into the spotlight. As we near the end of our season here in Colorado, we’ve compiled a list of some of the most breathtaking tours around the world to hold us over until the springtime.
Louisville Mega Cavern
Under the city of Louisville, Kentucky lies over 17 miles of underground tunnels and corridors. Explore them the quickest way possible on Louisville Mega Cavern‘s zipline tour – with six lines including a race zip and some challenge bridges, you’ll see areas of the cavern inaccessible on foot. This attraction is rated #1 on TripAdvisor in Louisville, so be sure to book ahead if you’re in the area during a busy time of the year.
La Bestra “The Beast”
Home to the longest zipline in the world is the Toro Verde Adventure Park in Puerto Rico. Suitably called “The Beast”, this monster has a cable as long as 28 football fields. If you build up the courage to conquer The Beast, you’ll hit speeds up to 90 miles per hour flying parallel to the ground. Check out this GoPro video on YouTube of someone’s flight on La Bestra.
Gravity Canyon is a park in New Zealand that offers a bounty of thrilling activities. Between their 50 meter freefall off of a bridge swing and the “flying fox”, each visitor will have the option to do something that is sure to make their stomach flip. You can even enjoy the 1,200 yard flying fox zipline with two of your friends by your side (literally).
The Himalayas in Nepal will look incredible from this 2,000 foot high zipline. It’s about a two minute ride – just enough for you to mildly freak out, catch your breath, and take in the landscape around you. ZipFlyer also offers a 70 foot vertical drop bungee jump, so you can book a combo of the two for an adventure-packed day.
Telluride Via Ferrata
We’ll start off with a popular attraction in our lovely state of Colorado. This non-guided Via Ferrata, completed a local ironworker and climber in 2007, is a challenge for all levels of athletes. Be sure you know what you’re doing and you have the correct gear before taking this on. The San Juan Mountain Guides are a group of experts in the area that are available to hire as your guide for the day if needed.
Head around the world for some of the most extreme Via Ferrata’s, suitable for only the most valiant of daredevils. Though not incredibly physically demanding, those who are afraid of heights should probably choose an activity closer to the ground. With the option of a 200 yard course to over 1300 yards, those who don’t want go all the way can opt out early if needed. There are guided tours on this Via Ferrata, as well as multi-day treks from hut to hut. Check out their website for more information.
Snake Canyon, Oman
This Via Ferrata course, designed and built in the winter of 2004/2005, explores the deep Snake Canyon in Oman. You’ll make your way back and forth across the top of the canyon on cables, along with a good bit of climbing and traversing along the cliffside. For experience outdoor enthusiasts, this course could take you only just over an hour.
Dent de Burgin, France
This intermediate course climbs to to the top of Dent de Burgin, a 9,000+ foot tall mountain in Meribel, France. $68 USD will get you a guided tour on this Via Ferrata, so experience is not needed prior to this adventure.
If you’ve never been Ziplining or on a Via Ferrata course, AVA has you set up in Colorado. Idaho Springs houses one of our outposts, with a 6 line Cliffside Zip course as well as our newest addition in summer 2017 – our Via Ferrata: the Iron Way. Our Buena Vista outpost also has a Mountaintop Zipline with panoramic views of the Arkansas Valley. Call us for a new type of adventure, then graduate to the top-notch Ziplines and Via Ferratas listed above!
*Featured photo showcasing the Snake Canyon Via Ferrata in Oman, courtesy of National Geographic.