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Flying on the fastest zipline in the world!

The fastest zipline in the world

Do you know what sucks about flying straight over a cliff at 100mph, 500ft above the largest man-made hole in the world with spectacular views all the way to Ireland? Erm yeah…NOTHING! Here’s how I got on…

Ready to go!

Just past a small, unassuming town in Wales lies the fastest zipline in the world, Zip World‘s Velocity Zipline. Not only that, at just about a mile in length it is the longest zipline in Europe, making it the perfect surprise birthday excursion for my adrenaline junkie boyfriend.

The morning of his birthday we travelled down from Manchester by train to Bangor and then got a 15 minute taxi ride to Penrhyn Quarry in Bethesda, Wales. Despite hitting a bit of traffic on the way, we marvelled at the luscious green hills that framed the car window and tried not to worry about being late.

I had been warned upon booking that we needed to arrive half an hour early for our time slot in order to get ourselves ready in all the zipline gear; if we weren’t on time there was a chance we wouldn’t get to zipline and there were no refunds. As the clock ticked to 12.30 and with our time slot being at 12.40 we pulled into Zip World late but eligible to zipline in our assigned slot. Phew!

Stepping out of the car surrounded by rolling hills, the Penrhyn Quarry Lake glistened as the sun peaked through the clouds and illuminated the slate filled Lake a beautiful blue colour. It felt like we were at the top of the world as the clouds rolled in over the tips of the hills, it was then it began to sink in that we were going to be zipping down here in just under half an hour!

Clouds rolling in

The Lake

The ‘Little Zipper’

After putting on our fetching ziplining suits and helmets, the group set off for the first stop, the aptly named ‘Little Zipper’. This smaller zipline based at Zip World acts as a sort of “warm up” to familiarise people with safety procedures when getting ready to zipline and prepare them for the daddy of all ziplines, Velocity.

The group heads off

As the third one to go in the group, there were a few rumblings of nerves as everyone watched me get harnessed to the line. With so many trees below us I couldn’t really see the ground so strangely didn’t feel all that nervous. I didn’t need to worry, although a great initial buzz to the day, it was over in seconds and then we had to wait for the rest of the group to ‘zip’ in before we could move onto Velocity.

That said we quickly passed the time talking to our fellow thrill-seekers, one guy from Essex began telling us about his recent skydiving experience which has only assured me that, that had to be up next.


After everyone had come down from the ‘Little Zipper’ we were taken by an Army truck up to the top of what was once, the largest slate quarry in the world. There are parts of the quarry that are still in operation today however the massive hole left from over 200 years of extracting slate makes it the perfect location for an epic zipline!

This time we were the first ones up and as it was starting to rain, it was an excellent decision. Harnessed in, we looked sideways at each other on twin ziplines waiting to go and before there was even time to think about what we were doing, we were off!

Flying down the zipline so quickly, you don’t register any fear, it is pure exhilaration from start to finish with some of the most spectacular views imaginable on the way down. But don’t take my word for it, you can see for yourself below :)

Overall, I’d say two thumbs massively up from me (and the birthday boy) on the experience and a fist pump with my mate, Blue Slate man ;)

Blue Slate Man Statue

Fist pump with Blue Slate Man for an awesome experience!

First timers tips for your trip to Zip World

-Don’t take public transport. This experience is for drivers only because it was miles away from the station and it was over £50 in taxis to and from the station. Don’t have a car? Rent one for the day, it’ll be far cheaper.

-Be on time. You don’t want to be the last ones there like we were and run the risk of not having your ziplining experience altogether!

-Bring your camera equipment. I didn’t know this at the time and unfortunately wasn’t told when I booked the experience that you can take a small camera with you on the zipline. You can attach your own GoPro onto your helmet and keep an iPhone in the pouch of your suit if you want to take any pictures before or after ziplining. We missed this opportunity, assuming we wouldn’t be allowed to take a camera which meant me missed a great photo opportunity at the top of the quarry.

-Bring a waterproof jacket/coat and an umbrella (even in summer). The day started out bright and sunny and quickly descended into a dark, misty rain storm so don’t leave it to chance.

Have you ever been ziplining? If you have comment below and tell me about your experience, I’d love hear it about :)

Mel x

About the author

Hi, I’m Mel! The adventure-seeking vegan travel blogger behind Footsteps on the Globe. On this blog you'll find my latest adventures, travel inspiration as well as tips and tricks on how to be vegan around the world. You don’t have to give up being vegan to follow your travel dreams and I’m here to show you how!