10Best: Breathtaking Cable Car Rides

  • Sugarloaf Mountain - Rio de Janeiro

    One of Rio de Janeiro's most popular attractions takes visitors to the peak of Sugarloaf Mountain, offering 360-degree views of the city below. The cable car is particularly popular come late afternoon, as the sunset from the summit is one of the best in the city.

    Photo courtesy of CelsoDiniz/iStock

  • Ngong Ping 360 - Hong Kong

    The Ngong Ping 360 cable car on Hong Kong's Lantau Island takes riders on a 25-minute journey to Ngong Ping Village, home of the iconic Tian Tan Buddha. Along the way, the cable car offers views of the South China Sea and the lush, hilly greenery of Lantau.

    Photo courtesy of crystaltmc/iStock

  • CabriO - Stanserhorn, Switzerland

    CabriO in Stanserhorn, Switzerland opened as the world's first double-decker cable car with an open upper deck, allowing riders to quite literally feel the wind in their hair. It takes just over six minutes to reach the top of Mount Stanserhorn, where it's possible to take in the views or enjoy a meal in a revolving restaurant.

    Photo courtesy of Stanserhorn

  • Table Mountain - Cape Town, South Africa

    The five-minute trip to the top of Cape Town's Table Mountain aboard the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway is unique in that each round cable car rotates, giving passengers 360-degree views as they ride. Views from the top include Cape Town, Table Bay, Robben Island and the Atlantic Seaboard.

    Photo courtesy of Table Mountain Aerial Cableway

  • Masada Cableway - Israel

    The spectacular nature of the view from the Masada Cableway in Israel is matched only by the historical significance of the sites visitors get to see while riding, including the Dead Sea and UNESCO-listed Masada Fortress.

    Photo courtesy of amit erez/iStock

  • Sulphur Mountain Gondola - Banff, Canada

    For one of the best bird's eye views of Banff National Park, take a ride on the Sulphur Mountain Gondola. Located just five minutes outside the town of Banff, this aerial cable car features a series of four-passenger gondolas that take riders 7,486 feet above sea level, with views of six different mountain ranges.

    Photo courtesy of Banff Lake Louise Tourism

  • Skyline Gondola - Queenstown, New Zealand

    In Queenstown, New Zealand, you'll find the steepest cable car ride in the Southern Hemisphere. The Skyline Gondola carries passengers 1,476 feet above the city below. The views of Coronet Peak, The Remarkables, Walter Peak and Cecil Peak are second to none.

    Photo courtesy of Eli Duke

  • Emirates Air Line - London

    Opened in time for the Olympics in 2012, the Emirates Air Line in London ferries passengers across the Thames River in Greenwich. The 10-minute ride gives passengers a unique view of the city between the Greenwich Peninsula and the Royal Docks.

    Photo courtesy of James Petts

  • Grouse Mountain Skyride - Vancouver, Canada

    Considered North America's largest aerial tramway system, the Grouse Mountain Skyride in Vancouver takes visitors to the mountain summit, where it's possible to see not only the city of Vancouver, but the Pacific Ocean and Gulf Islands in the distance.

    Photo courtesy of Chris Morisawa

  • Hakone Ropeway - Mt. Fuji, Japan

    A ride on Japan's Hakone Ropeway offers arguably the best views of snow-capped Mount Fuji on a clear day. Even if the weather isn't cooperating, the gondolas still provide lovely views of the lake and surrounding mountains.

    Photo courtesy of worakit_/iStock

  • Sandia Peak Tramway - Albuquerque, N.M.

    Albuquerque's Sandia Peak Tramway extends for 2.7 miles, taking visitors high above the Sandia foothills to the top of the mountain, where it's possible to see – from 10,378 feet – an 11,000-square-mile view of the Rio Grande Valley below. Sunset views in the Desert Southwest don't get much better either.

    Photo courtesy of Brian Sterling