There’s nothing more spectacular than a city with an imposing skyline and a nearby mountain-top from which to enjoy the view. There’s just something magical about it. I guess it’s the adventure of getting to the top of the mountain and the first moment you feast your eyes on the incredible view. It’s always an enchanting, often surreal experience that makes the effort so worthwhile.
I’ve listed below ten mountains which I’ve visited for truly breathtaking views. If you’re in any of these cities, I highly recommend making it to the top of these mountains for an unforgettable visual experience.
Victoria Peak – Hong Kong
Grouse Mountain – Vancouver
Just a short hop away from downtown Vancouver, Grouse Mountain is a ski-resort as well as a much-loved hiking area. The views of Vancouver and the snowy peaks of Vancouver Island in the distance on a clear day are stupendous. This amazing picture was taken on a foggy night.
Corcovado – Rio de Janeiro
The ‘hunchback’ mountain of Rio de Janeiro is the home of the Christ Statue (one of the new ‘Wonders of the World’) and the perfect place to enjoy an unforgettable panorama of Rio de Janeiro.
Table Mountain – Cape Town
Table Mountain overlooks Cape Town and Table Bay. The cable-car that brings visitors to the top is the start of a spectacular visual experience. The views from the top of Cape Town, Devil’s Peak, Lion’s Head, Table Bay and Robben Island are amazing. Save some time for a lovely stroll around the fijnbos shrubs on the mountain-top.
Twin Peaks – San Francisco
Twin Peaks is the place to be for the most mind-blowing views of San Francisco. The view of the city-lights at night is absolutely awe-inspiring.
Mt. Victoria – Wellington
Mount Victoria lies at the edge of downtown Wellington and is a great place to enjoy Wellington’s beautiful location, wedged in between Wellington Harbour and the surrounding mountains of the Rimutaka Range. Various scenes from the ‘Lord of the Rings’ trilogy were shot on Mount Victoria.
Tibidabo – Barcelona
Tibidabo is the highest peak in Barcelona and the views of the city and the coastline from up here are truly spectacular. There’s more up here to keep visitors occupied other than the views, such as the beautiful Sagrat Cor Church and Barcelona’s oldest amusement park.
Cerro de la Cruz – Antigua
Cerro de la Cruz is not the highest peak overlooking the stunning UNESCO Heritage town of Antigua in Guatemala but it offers some of the most stunning views. It’s a relatively easy hike to get to the top and the classic view of Antigua below with the imposing Volcan Agua as a backdrop will leave you speechless.
Cerro San Cristobal – Santiago
Located to the north of Santiago, Cerro San Cristobal is a superb spot to view the Santiago sprawl as well as the mighty Andes mountains that overlook the city. A huge statue of the Virgin Mary stands proudly atop the mountain.
Elephant Mountain – Taipei
Elephant Mountain lies smack in the middle of Taipei and offers arguably the best vantage point over the city and its famous Taipei 101 Tower, until recently, the world’s tallest building. A pleasant 20-minute stroll leads to the top. The trail is lit so you can walk up in the early evenings to take in the sunset and the city lights.
Do you know of other city peaks that are worth the climb? Please leave your suggestions in the comments section below. Thanks!
Read other articles in the Velvet Escape “Ten” series: