Lazy tourists visiting scenic mountain spots in China’s Zhejiang Province can now skip mountain hiking altogether and ride giant escalators hundreds of meters long to reach the best view spots.
Tour operators in China’s Zhejiang Province have installed massive escalators on mountains to help tourists gain access to the best views with virtually no effort. Scenic scots that were once only accessible by hiking on precarious trails are now available to anyone willing to ride one of these escalators for a few seconds, minutes at most.
For example, Tanyu Mountain, in Zhejiang’s Chun’an county, has an altitude of only 350 meters, but due to the precarious relief, tourists have to walk three mountains around the mountain in order to reach the summit, making it inaccessible to the elderly and young children.
But thanks, to the new escalator, anyone can now reach the top of Tanyu Mountain with virtually no effort.
“The original purpose for us to build this elevator is to solve the traffic problem in climbing the mountain,” a worker who helped install the giant escalator said. “In the beginning, we considered building a cableway. However, given cableway’s limited transportation capability and high-security risk, the escalator is relatively safer and has a high transportation capability, which can satiety the needs of the scenic area.”
Although the mountain escalators make sense from an accessibility standpoint, there are many who find them a nuisance rather than a boon. Hiking enthusiasts think that such contraptions take the joy out of the entire mountain experience because they require no physical effort.
“So what’s the point of climbing the mountain? I think that joy has gone,” a critic wrote on social media.
“Don’t you see the escalators take away from the natural beauty of the mountain?” someone else complained.
The concept of “no-pain mountain climbing” has not been universally adopted by all, but it definitely has its share of fans as well.
“I haven’t walked a single step to scale most of the mountain, and I haven’t missed any scenic spots,” one satisfied tourist said.
“It’s awesome for the elderly and children. You don’t need to climb by yourself. Just stand on the escalator. In a word, my kid is happy and I am happy,” a young mother added.
Videos of the 350-meter escalator system at Tanyu Mountain recently went viral, but this is not the only such contraption in Zhejiang Province. The Shenxianju Tour Zone in Taizhou features a 104-metre-long escalator known as the South Sky Ladder that was installed about three years ago.