High Places ... and the Number of Steps to Get There

  • Willis Tower - 2,109 Steps

    If you were to opt for the stairs in Chicago's Willis Tower – the tallest building in the United States – you'd be faced with 2,109 steps from the base to the 103rd floor Skydeck. The fastest time to the top was recorded in 2009 in 13 minutes and 9 seconds.

    Photo courtesy of Skydeck Chicago

  • Eiffel Tower - 1,665 Steps

    If 1,665 steps sounds like a lot, don't worry. Visitors to the Eiffel Tower in Paris are only allowed to climb the staircases to the second floor observation platform. To get there, you'll have to climb 704 steps through this iconic metallic structure. It's great exercise and you won't have to wait in line for the lifts!

    Photo courtesy of Thomas Bullock

  • Empire State Building - 1,860 Steps

    It's 1,860 steps to the 102nd floor observatory of the Empire State Building in New York, but only 1,576 to the observatory on the 86th floor. Usually, it's better to take the elevator that gets you there in less than one minute. Each year, the building hosts a Run-Up event where runners from around the globe race to the top; the fastest time was 9 minutes and 33 seconds.

    Photo courtesy of ZeroOne

  • Washington Monument - 896 Steps

    The Washington Monument obelisk in Washington, DC rises about 555 feet above the National Mall, offering visitors to the top views extending some 30 miles in any direction. Forgoing the elevator would require climbing 50 landings of stairs to the observation level – almost 900 steps!

    Photo courtesy of Derek Key

  • Christ the Redeemer - 220 Steps

    If you want to visit Rio de Janeiro's most iconic attraction, Christ the Redeemer, you'll first have to take a 20-minute train ride to the top of Corcovado Mountain, then climb an additional 220 steps to the base of the statue. If you'd rather not make the climb, you also have the option of elevators or an escalator.

    Photo courtesy of Christian Haugen

  • Chimney Rock State Park Peak - 491 Steps

    Most visitors to Chimney Rock State Park choose to take the 26-story elevator to the top to enjoy the sweeping views, but ambitious travelers – or those looking for bragging rights – can take Outcroppings Trail to the top instead. This option involves climbing up 491 steps, and you'll be rewarded with views of Kings Mountain some 75 miles away.

    Photo courtesy of Selena N. B. H.

  • Statue of Liberty - 154 Steps

    To get from the pedestal to the head of the Statue of Liberty in New York City, you only have to climb 154 steps up a corkscrew staircase with small, triangular steps. From the observation level inside her crown, you'll be rewarding with 180 degree views of the Big Apple below.

    Photo courtesy of Celso FLORES

  • Big Ben - 334 Steps

    The Elizabeth Tower of Parliament, home of Big Ben, is one of London's most iconic landmarks and open for visitors to climb. On a climbing tour, you'll ascend 334 steps to the belfry where you can stand behind the clock face, hear Big Ben strike the hour and see the inner workings of the clock in the mechanism room.

    Photo courtesy of Greg Knapp

  • Niesen Mountain - 11,674 Steps

    The Guinness Book of World Records-recognized longest staircase can be found on Niesen Mountain with a whopping 11,674 steps – that's more than three times as many as in the Burj Khalifa. The staircase was built for maintenance workers to have access to the train tracks, but once a year, the steps are opened for the Niesen Staircase Race.

    Photo courtesy of StFr

  • Burj Khalifa - 2,909 Steps

    It's no wonder that the world's tallest building (for the moment anyway) has such a staggering number of steps to the top – nearly 3,000 to reach the 160th floor. It's probably a good thing that visitors aren't allowed to take the stairs in Dubai's Burj Khalifa; instead, they must ride an elevator to the 124th floor At The Top observation deck.

    Photo courtesy of elisasophia