Fave Five Zipline Tours

Editors of TravelAge West write about some of their favorite zipline tours in North America
Ziplining at Puerto Rico’s Toro Verde Nature Adventure Park // © 2011 Janeen Christoff
Ziplining at Puerto Rico’s Toro Verde Nature Adventure Park // © 2011 Janeen Christoff

The ZipRider, out of Icy Strait Point, Alaska is the ultimate zipline experience. It’s one of the world’s longest and highest, measuring 5,300 feet in length and has a stomach-in-your-throat, 1,300-foot vertical drop. Each of the six, mile-long cables allows racing speeds of up to 60 mph. It’s a 90-second ride that helps fill the need for speed. Of course, I love ziplining in the trees, and would be remiss if I didn’t also include the Alaska Canopy Adventures zipline in Alaska’s rainforest. Going 35 mph in a cannonball and braking with your hand before landing on a platform on a huge spruce, is addictive fun, plus the sky bridges are not to be missed if you want to fly with the eagles instead of the turkeys on lesser ziplines.
— Christopher Batin, Alaska Editor

By far, my favorite zipline experience took place during a summer vacation with my dad in Western Canada. We had never tried ziplining before, so we were looking forward to the chance of seeing Whistler Mountain from a different perspective and zooming among the tree tops. Ziptrek Ecotours provided more than just thrills from 15 stories above the Canadian rainforest — it also gave us a chance to learn about the surrounding natural environment and the importance of sustainable tourism.
— Skye Mayring, Associate Editor

Too much relaxation, via a cruise getaway to Mexico, marked by blended cocktails and leisurely laboring over tan lines, can make me jumpy — so jumpy, in fact, that during our port stop in Puerto Vallarta my brother and I headed to our first zipline. Our Canopy Adventure with Vallarta Adventures provided the right amount of thrill and adrenaline, allowing us to return to the cruise pool, guilt-free. For its guaranteed promise of adventure far above sea level, ziplining is a quintessential activity that complements cruises so well that Oasis of the Seas even offers guests the opportunity to zipline while onboard.
— Mindy Poder, Assistant Editor

Although the zipline experience has come to be equated with ecotourism, thrill-seekers can trade in rainforests and mountains for a canopy of neon lights, when ziplining across the Fremont Street Experience in downtown Las Vegas. Riders suit up at downtown Las Vegas’s Neonopolis to soar for about 25 seconds along the canopy’s length of about four blocks. At a price of $15 during the day and $20 at night, the zipline experience is a bargain by any standards. The same outfit also runs the Bootleg Canyon zipline in nearby Boulder City, so fans seeking a more traditional experience, can drive 30 minutes outside of Las Vegas to enjoy the spectacular mountains of Las Vegas, Lake Mead and the Boulder Dam.
— Monica Poling, Online Editor

Puerto Rico
The ziplines at Toro Verde Nature Adventure Park are far from your ordinary zip in the park. Its nearly 5,000-foot-long zipline called The Beast requires visitors to wear a cocoon-like harness and fly like Superman across a lush valley — 853 feet off of the ground. It isn’t as scary as it looks, but it is certainly an adrenaline rush. In addition to ziplines, the park offers other obstacles such as suspension bridges and mountain biking.
— Janeen Christoff, Managing Editor

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