I Conquered the World’s Highest Urban Climb
During my recent stay in Hong Kong, I decided to spend a full day in the former Portuguese province of Macau. Macau is mainly known for its blend between Portuguese and Chinese culture, as well as the gambling industry on the island. Casinos such as The Venetian, Wynn and Casino Lisboa attract millions of tourists annually, but gambling was not the reason I decided to visit Macau. What had piqued my interest was the Macau Tower and the extreme adventure tour company AJ Hackett.
Soaring 338 metres above ground, the Macau Tower is the highest building in Macau. The tower houses everything from restaurants and shops to theaters and an observation deck. More interestingly, it also houses the world’s highest commercial bungy jump, the highest tethered skyjump in the world, and a skywalk on the ledge of the tower.
As an adrenaline addict who is not averse to living on the edge, I immediately knew I had to add throwing myself off of it in the world’s highest bungy jump to my itinerary.
Upon arrival at the Macau Tower, I boarded the high-speed panoramic elevators that transported me up to the Adventure Deck on the 61th floor and with 360-degree view of the area.
Once outfitted in my safety harness, I was lead out on the outer platform that encircles the outside wall of the tower to begin my Skywalk. The Skywalk can be described as a stroll around the outer rim of Macau Tower. The platform around the tower is about 2 meters wide with no handrails on either side to separate you from the 223 metre drop.
The harness is attached to a set of rails on top of the outer platform.
Piercing the sky at a dizzying height of 223 metres, tethered to the external frame of the building, I performed the adrenaline-fuelled challenges and stunts as demonstrated. I balanced on one foot with the other swinging in the wind over the ledge. I swung, ran and slided my way through the 360 degrees platform around the tower, taking in the gloomy views of Macau. We completed the full circle on the outer rim of the tower in about 10 minutes.
Next up was the Sky Jump. Leaping out from the platform, I was plunging down 61 floors at a speed of 50km/h, attached to a wire cable during my jump. The wire cable meant I was lowered in a controlled manner with a quick descent and smooth landing on the plaza below. The experience was akin to that of stuntmen on film sets, and the jump lasted for about 15 thrilling seconds.
Macau has more to offer than just the world’s highest bungee jump, a thrilling Sky Jump and an exciting Sky Walk. Macau Tower is also home to the world’s highest urban climb!
My 2-hour ascend began at floor 61, a height of 233 metres above ground. I was geared up and received a safety briefing by the guides, and was attached securely to a cable slider. The first leg of the climb took place inside a small barrel. Finally emerging from the barrel, I had reached the first outdoor platform, bracing myself for the summit attempt.
From here on, I would be scaling the rest of the tower from the outside, surrounded by the vast expanse of open air and completely exposed to the elements, watching Macau taking shape beneath my feet as I had travelled up the ladders.
I proceed by climbing the mast’s vertical ladders, one at a time, scaling the exterior of the structure, stopping every now and then at the outdoor platforms. The first few outdoor ladders reminded me of rung ladders, however, the hardest part of the climb was yet to come. After having reached the top platform of the tower – a dazzling 320 metres above ground level – the last leg of the climb was done on small U-shaped rungs attached directly to the narrowest part of the mast.
The weather conditions were not the best, with the wind howling against my face and rain coming down in torrents. Ever so often, I could feel the mast slightly swaying from side to side and back and forth.
Nevertheless, I eventually reached the very tip of the mast, conquering Macau’s highest point at 338 metres and was immediately rewarded with unobstructed vistas of Macau. I was literally soaring over the cityscape and bodies of water.
The ascend to the pinnacle of the tower was a daring exploit and what I enjoyed most about the Tower Climb is that, in contrast to the jump, the climb gives you have full control and so you are put into a position in which you need to make conscious decisions, making the activity much more of a challenge.
An Unforgettable Experience
The adventure activities with AJ Hackett at Macau Tower was an epic and unforgettable experience that will remain a vivid memory for long to come.
What do you travel for? Is it for escapism and recreation, to meet new people and new cultures, or to check off bucket list items and push your fears to the limit? I would love you to drop me a comment below and share your experiences.