Atlas Obscura Paternosters!
My old man once told me about how he crossed the Rio Grande de Loíza (Big Loiza River) once using the transporting service at the time called “El Ancón de Loíza” (I assume Ancón means Big/Huge Anchor):
Basically, it was a raft for vehicles to cross from the town of Loíza to San Juan. Supposedly it was active since the 1700s. It no longer exists as you may have guessed, since they built a bridge that crosses over.
However, according to this site there’s currently a project to rescue that feel of crossing in a raft (Is in Spanish and for some reason some vowels are replaced with x’s):
Hope it succeeds cause I would like to experience it.
Not sure if this “counts” as public transportation, but growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, where some of the streets are just flights of stairs, I fell in love with this alternate mode of transport up the side of a very steep hill in Hong Kong.
A Pater Noster in Prague in the early 2000’s–which I guess I didn’t really take because I got scared after only one floor and jumped off!
Love the music in this video I found. (It’s not the Pater Noster I took–mine was unrestored and kind of rickety.)
Glasgow’s subway opened on 14 December 1896 (the third oldest in the world after London and Budapest) - known by Glaswegians as the ‘Clockwork Orange’ due to its dinky scale (4 ft / 1219 mm gauge) and its single circular route. It is a very different travel experience. As a student in Glasgow a pub crawl stopping for a drink at each of the 15 stations was a challenge of a Saturday night.
Try the transporter bridge between Middlesbrough and Port Clarence in north east England.is it a bridge,cable car or ferry?!a cables guided by the bridge above pull a gondala across the river Tees in about 3 minutes.
I have friends who live in Montreal, Quebec and when I visit them, we use the subways frequently. The stations are each designed and decorated by a different architect so that no two are identical or even remotely similar. Some are quite beautiful and I always enjoy discovering new ones. The subway cars and stations are very neat and clean, as well as free from graffiti.
I’d definitely give the Glasgow subway a shot. At 6’2" and 230lb. I don’t know how comfortable it would be but hey, when in Glasgow…
fotomiep, I rode on the elevator in Lisbon many years ago, and what a beautiful piece of transport it is! I was told it was designed by the same man who designed the Eiffel Tower.
larahaggerty, I was recently on the Incline Railway to the top of Lookout Mountain outside of Chattanooga, Tennessee, and no photo does it justice. I found it scary enough as it was, but the old photos of the original railway from the 1890s, which you can see in a small display in the station at the top, were really frightening to me – people sitting in an open wooden car on slippery-looking wooden benches with no seatbelts and nothing to hang on to!
Probably the most fun I ever had on public transport was on an old rattletrap train from Tunis to Sidi Bou Said in Tunisia, many years ago. It was splintery and shaky and bounced and bucked all along the track, but everybody was smiling and friendly (and Sidi Bou Said at the end of the trip was so beautiful!).
I’m surprised that no one has mentioned Angel Flight, the little funicular in Los Angeles. It looks silly from the outside because it hardly goes anywhere, but it’s really very useful.
I’ve done tons of funuculars railways including the worlds steepest at katoomba,nsw, Australia and I’d guess the worlds longest(?) up cairngorm, Scotland.another interesting and unusual form of public transport is the little wooden ferries across the Creek in dubai.l have Hong Kongs mid level escalators under the belt too!
The Belgian coastal tram that you can take from Bruges to Zeebrugge, Ostende, etc is awesome and unique.
Indianapolis has a monorail only for use to transport medical personnel and materials
There are so many forms of public transportation that can be included, but most of them already have been. Though here’s one we just discovered today. It’s a mini train in Santa Luzia Portugal called Pedras d’el Rei that takes visitors on a short 1 km ride out to Barril Beach for 1.50 Euros. At one time it was used to haul goods and fish between the village and the fishing community.
I loved the Metro in Montreal! I stayed near the Charlevoix stop and always looked forward to seeing the gorgeous stained glass. I did see graffiti sometimes, but it was always cleaned up within 12 hours… so efficient! The Beaudry stop in the Gay Village was a fave too.
My shots from the funicular in Quebec city! This thing saved me from being late back to my tour bus, I would have missed it if I’d walked down the long way!
I enjoyed the DLR while living there.
I’m so glad you provided the wonderful photo! That’s one of my most favorite. I was awestruck the first time I saw it. Imagine, stained glass in a subway station! Another one I love has beautiful colored tiles - I can’t recall the name of the station. I’ll have to do a little research and maybe provide more photos of some links.
metrodemontreal.com has great descriptions of the stations (there are 68 at present) but the photos are not showing up for me. I don’t know if it’s me or the website, but you can give it a try. The architects are identified as well as the date of inauguration. Good luck!
OH WOW what a great site! Yes, the photos are working and they even show before and after renovations. Thanks for such a cool link!
I almost forgot that Lisbon has an escalator now as well, I think since last year…
Live in the town right next door, if you want to visit I wouldn’t get your hopes up, it’s just a normal station with it’s name plastered everywhere with loads of coach trippers. However if you do visit make sure to go check out the abandoned monument to the marquess of Anglesey, the lions hidden underneath the britania bridge over the Menai straits, and the hidden treasures in plas newydd. Llanfairpwll has lots of wonders but it’s name is not one