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Monday
Nov282011

Adrenaline Adventures: The Best of Bungee Around the World

Whether it’s throwing yourself from somewhere high, swimming with something deadly, or embracing the extreme elements, backpacking has long been associated with adrenaline-inducing activities. This week we’ll be going truly Into the Wild on the Frontier blog, launching things with a look at some of the best places in the world to get your bungee kicks.

Photo courtesy of .Martin.

Inspired by a South-Pacific tribal tradition in which the young males’ passage into manhood is put to the test by way of jumping from a tall wooden platform whilst tied to vines, bungee jumping has developed into a worldwide craze. Despite its availability in so many exotic locations, the bungee’s modern-day form was first toyed with by the thrill-seeking members of Oxford University’s Dangerous Sports Club back in 1979, using the Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol as a platform. It was A J Hackett however that spotted the true potential in the sport, opening the first commercial jump from the Kawarau Bridge in Queenstown on the South Island of New Zealand.    

Five Amazing Bungee Jumps:

Kawarau Bridge - Queenstown, New Zealand

Photo courtesy of Aenneken

Despite being dwarfed by more recent jumps, Kawarau Bridge is where it all began back in 1988. At a relatively tame 43 metres high, Kawarau is a great place to start for those who aren’t keen on the dizzy heights of some of the monsters on this list. Queenstown also offers the opportunity to move onto bigger and better things once you discover that insatiable need to get higher.

Victoria Falls Bridge, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe/Zambia

Photo courtesy of ctsnow

Linking Zimbabwe with Zambia, the Victoria Falls Bridge crosses the Zambezi River just below the waterfall itself. A waterfall jump will always be one of the most spectacular locations to bungee, and it doesn’t get much better than Victoria Falls, supposedly the largest sheet of falling water anywhere in the world. Often said to be the best in the world, you’ll be racing head-first towards the flowing Zambezi from a height of 111 metres.

Verzasca Dam – Locarno, Switzerland

Photo courtesy of twicepix

The site of probably the world’s most famous and iconic bungee jumps seen in the opening sequence of Goldeneye, the Verzasca Dam offers you your very own 007 moment. A jump here will see you free-fall down the face of the 220m dam for 7.5 seconds…just long enough to get over the initial shock and imagine you’re a spy.

Bloukrans Bridge – South Africa

Photo courtesy of Axel Hecht

One-time holder of the highest bungee jump in the world accolade, the Bloukrans Bridge jump is a pretty daunting prospect. The beautiful surroundings of this location make this one extra special, with the Bloukrans River directly below. The bridge sits 216m above the torrent of water, and the pendulum system gives a notoriously smooth experience.

Macau Tower – China

Photo courtesy of paldor

At 233m high, the Macau Tower offers the highest commercial bungee facility in the world. The urban environment of this jump sets it apart from the others on this list, so it’s definitely one to get done if you’re serious about bungee jumping.

By Alex Prior

Reader Comments (1)

Amazing!! Here is the Macao Tower dive - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DcjPNxmwJ34

November 28, 2011 | Registered CommenterInto The Wild

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