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LIST: ZIP LINES

These are some of the world's most impressive zip lines that I am aware of. Some of them are long single zip wires. Some are collections of zip wires in treetop adventure parks. Many claim to be the longest in their region. ;)

Have a search on Youtube. Most ziplines have been filmed and you can get a sense of how dramatic they are.
Adrenalin X-treme Adventures San Vigilio, N. Italy They call this one "Europe's biggest zip line" because it is not one, but 10 zip wires zig-zagging between platforms down the sides of a steep valley (a ski piste in winter time) in the Italian Dolomites. The total length is 3.2 kilometres, over a 420 metre drop. Max speed 80 kmph.
Cable Vuelo Chicamocha Santander, Colombia A slightly odd zip line system with riders slung from a pair of parallel cables. Their descent is slowed at the end by crashing into a large pad (Pads are not unusual, but usually there's a pre-pad breaking system. Somebody died crashing into it head first w/o a helmet in 2009) And judging by one video riders are loaded at the bottom station before being hauled in groups up to the top for release. There are three different zip lines: the longest is 450m, the shortest is designed for kids. The park is also home to one of the world's longest cable car systems covering 6.3 kilometres.
Dragon's Breath Zip line Labadee, Haiti The longest zip line in the Caribbean runs over land and water for 790 metres (899 yds). The zip line starts 500 feet above Labadee beach and can reach speeds of 50 mph. Some cruise lines like Disney, have their own private island resorts. Royal Caribbean has a private resort on the north coast of Haiti, which is where they operate this zip line.
Fantasticable Super-Besse Puys de Sancy, France Opened July 2013, this is another from the Fantasticable company (see notes below). Super-Besse is a purpose built winter sports resort (1350m) in the middle of France in the Parc naturel régional des volcans d'Auvergne. The zip is 1600m long, drops 250m, and reaches speeds up to 120kph.
Flyin Hawaiian Zipline Maui, Hawaii Eight ziplines from 250ft (76m) to Hawaii's longest zip at just over a kilometre long (3,600ft) combine to cover 2½ miles of the West Maui canopy stretching from Waikapu to Ma‘alaea.
Hollybank Treetops Adventure Launceston, Tasmania A 214m zip line across a deep valley, above the Hollybank Forest and Pipers River. It made Grumpy Traveller scream like a girl, so that has to be good, eh?
Il Volo dell’angelo Basilicata, Italy Claims to be the world's fastest at 120kph, but is actually out-paced by at least three others in Europe. All the same it is pretty dramatic and unusual. There are two lines stretched between the mountain top villages of Pietrapertosa & Castelmezzanos. The first starts at 1020m in Pietrapertosa and arrives in Castelmezzano at 859m after covering 1415 meters with the top speed of 110 kph. Then you climb up the hill to 1019m and travel back 1452m to Pietrapertosa at 888m, reaching 120 km/h on the way. Big speeds, big distances and one of the unusual aspects is that it also takes a double harness so two can 'fly' together.
Jungle Flight Chiang Mai, Thailand Actually not one zip line but a treetop jungle trail over several miles with 20 zip lines (the longest 300m), linking 33 Platforms and 3 sky bridges.
Jungle Surfing Queensland, Australia A multi zip line experience through the canopy of Daintree Rainforest at Cape Tribulation. There are four zip lines. The longest is 78 metres.
Kapalua Ziplines Maui, Hawaii Seven pairs of zip lines (parallel lines so you can zip side-by-side) covering two miles, including two lines over 2,000 feet long (610m).
Laggen Outdoor Activity Centre Zipline Galloway, Scotland I feel sorry for these guys. When it opened in June 2012 it was billed as the UK's longest... then Zip World opened in North Wales. All the same it is half a mile long (0.82km), and its vertical drop is 110m, giving riders speeds up to 50mph.
Marble Zip Marble Mountain, Newfoundland Nine zip lines ranging in length from 150m to 600m (approx 500 - 2,000ft), zig-zagging across the dramatic Steady Brook Falls with views over the Humber Valley. Their claim to fame is that at 87m (285ft) above the ground they have the "highest" zip line in Canada.
Pena Aventura Oporto, Portugal The Pena Aventura park has a 1538 metre Fantasticable zip line, dropping 150 metres, with speeds up to 130 kph.
Piiholo Ranch Zipline Maui, Hawaii Five ziplines with one at 1,420ft (432m).
Skyline Eco-Adventures Hawaii The first Zipline Company in the United States (you can tell from their url!), established in 2002, which may help to explain why there are so many ziplines on Maui. They now have four zipline tour locations, each with 5-8 lines: two on Maui, one on Big Island and one on Kauai. No lengths given.
Sky Trek Monteverde, Costa Rica Ten zip lines - the longest is 750 metres - covering 1.7 miles of jungle, linking treetop canopy platforms and walkways.
SkyWire at the Eden Project Cornwall, UK The Eden Project (probably now Cornwall's best-known tourism attraction - controlled climate biomes set in a 35 acre former quarry) has installed a 660-metre zip line, which they claim is England's (note the distinction) longest. Tests have seen speeds up to 60mph.
Terraltitude Fumay, N. France Woodland aventure park in the Ardennes with a Fantasticable zipline that sails across the river Meuse at high speed (130kph/81mph) for over 1 kilometre. Quite a ride!
Toroverde La Bestia Orocovis, Puerto Rico The Toroverde eco park has eight ziplines, and The Beast - 4,745 feet (1.446km) long, travelling at speeds up to 60mph.
Zip 2000 Sun City, South Africa For now the longest zip line in the world at 2 kilometres long (6,561 feet)! Speeds reach 90 kph over the 280 metre vertical drop.
ZipFlyer Nepal Sarangkot, Nepal Claims to be world's most extreme zipline. Its vertical drop of 600 meters over a total distance of 1.8km makes this the world's steepest, tallest and one of the longest ziplines. It is also one of the fastest with top speeds of up to 140 kmph. It is located on Sarangkot, about 10 km from Pokhara.
Ziprider Icy Point, Alaska Probably the longest in North America, but their claim is "The world's largest", by which they mean the combination of length and vertical drop. The Icy Point zip line is 1.6 kilometres (5,330 feet) long, descending almost 400m (1,300ft) in around 90 secs (60 mph maximum speed)
Zip World Bethesda, North Wales At 1.46 kilometres (4,800 ft) long, this new zip line in what used to be the world's largest slate quarry, is claimed to be the longest in Europe, and reaches speeds up to 100mph (160kph)! There's no doubt about it, this is easily one of the most extreme zip lines, and it's in the UK.

Notes

  • Fantasticable has several 1.5 km ziplines in Europe and Canada and one soon in Russia. The Habes-Fumay in the Ardennes and the Ribiera de Pena in Portugal are two of theirs.
  • I'll try to keep this list up-to-date but there's quite a lot of 'churn' in this business. Cables, even if they are expensive (Zipworld's cost £600,000 apparently) are, compared to other pieces of capital infrastructure, quite easy to put up and take down. I'm aware of a couple that have appeared and then disappeared for one reason or another.
  • For some unclear reason, zip lines are also sometimes called 'flying foxes'.

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