I once took a cable car to the top of Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in the French alps. Then, I tip-toed out onto a glass platform hanging over the edge. It was terrifying, but I would do it again in a heartbeat.
With that experience behind me, I would definitely take a trip on the colossal elevator in China’s Wulingyuan Scenic and Historic Area in the Zhangjiajie National Forest Park.
Even if it meant my teeth would be chattering, my heart would be pumping and my brain would be screaming “what are you doing!”.
The site, which has been granted UNESCO World Heritage status, is famous for its stunning views of the quartzite-sandstone mountains of the Wuling Mountain range.
The world’s tallest glass elevator opened right in the heart of this natural wonder back in 2003. It gives tourists a unique — and quick — way to take in the views.
While it’s officially named the Bailong Elevator, it has gained an ominous nickname: ‘the Hundred Dragon Elevator’.
And the Hundred Dragon Elevator isn’t for the faint of heart. It stands 330 metres high, and makes the ascent in just 90 seconds. All while holding up to 50 people at a time.
The tower has set three Guinness World Records: it is the world’s tallest exposure outdoor elevator, tallest double-deck sightseeing elevator, and the fastest passenger traffic elevator.
Given its placement in the midst of a UNESCO-protected natural site, its construction was met with some controversy. That hasn’t stopped the tourists from flooding in though, with around 5 million visitors ascending on the elevator each year.
If a ride like this doesn’t tickle your fancy, you can always opt for the old-fashioned experience by taking the two-and-a-half hour walk up the valley instead.