Living in the UAE, one becomes accustomed to the superlative edition of life.
You have the ‘oldest international chain
hotel’ right here in Al Ain, the ‘tallest
building in the world’ is in Dubai, and it
just happens to sit next to ‘the largest
mall in the world’ which also happens to
contain the world’s ‘largest acrylic panel’
at the aquarium.
So, it was no surprise that at the start of
February, Guinness World Records was
back in the country – this time in Ras Al
Khaimah for the launch of the tallest and
longest zipline in the world.
Suspended 1,680 metres above sea
level and covering 2.83 kilometres, the
zipline spans the rocky chasm of Jebel
Jais offering participants, or “pilots”, an
unprecedented view from above as they
zip along at over 120 kilometres per hour.
The zipline is operated by Toroverde Ras
Al Khaimah, which manages and operates
ziplines all over the world, including the
previous record holder, the ‘Monster’, in
I found the entire experience to be very
straightforward. We were given the body harness
and helmets in the welcome centre with the
available option of a GoPro if we didn’t have one.
Along with it came a backpack for each pilot, which
carried all of the gear we needed for the frst run.
They don’t allow you to take anything with you,
however, if you do want to take a mobile phone, it
can be concealed and kept safe in the small pocket
of your backpack. Just remember to have a friend
zip it completely closed when you’re done with your
Outftted with safety gear, we boarded a shuttle
bus to take us to the launching platform. It is a
rather steep climb to the precipice, and I found my
stomach beginning to move upwards the closer we
got to the top.
Once we arrived, the true scale of the length is
fnally apparent – and yes, it’s a long way across.
Looking across the vast openness, you can barely
see the landing platform on the other side. The
helpful staff of Toroverde unpacked our backpacks
and we were then helped into the hammock-type
thing that we would be riding in over the side of the
Pilots are suspended headfrst overlooking the cliff
face for the frst leg of the journey, which takes
about two or three minutes depending on weight
and weather conditions. The frst cable is actually a
dual zipline, allowing you to experience the whole
ride literally alongside somebody or to simply race
him or her to the frst landing platform.
Flat on my stomach, strapped in, and visor
pulled down to protect any bugs from getting
splattered across my eyeballs, I was simply told
to “enjoy the ride” before the locking pin was
pulled from my tackle. My Oasis Living colleague
offered a very unhelpful ‘bye’ before I was
soaring away from the mountain’s ledge slowly
gaining speed up to 120 kilometers per hour.
The canyon slowly rolled away beneath me as
the wind whipped my cheeks and I tried to keep
my body as pointed as possible to ensure a safe
arrival on the other side.
Suspended itself, the landing platform is the
transferring location for the second half of the
experience. You are helped down from the frst
cable by more friendly staff and they repack
everything for you back into your backpack. From
the platform, you travel another kilometre to the
fnal landing zone. Pilots on this run experience
it in the more traditional ‘seated’ position and
land standing on their feet, instead of their
Once completed, a shuttle bus returns you
to the welcome centre where you have your
commemorative photo taken, along with getting
a special patch designating your own specifc
ﬂight number which can be fxed to any item of
clothing you have.
A memorable, if somewhat hair-raising,
experience. Try it if you dare.
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11 July, 2019