The Niederwald monument and cable car – a story in itself. The 38-meter-high Niederwald monument with Germania was built to commemorate the Franco-Prussian War of 1870/71 and the re-establishment of the German Empire in the years 1877 – 1883, laying the foundations for modern tourism.
To accommodate the numerous people wanting to visit the monument, a rack-and-pinion railway was built in 1884, the forerunner of today’s cable car, which transported visitors through the vineyards to the monument.
In 1954, the cable car replaced the rack-and-pinion railway and became an equally popular means of transport – and a landmark of the town. In its anniversary year in 2004, it welcomed its 30 millionth passenger. Since 2005, visitors have been riding up to the Niederwald monument in bigger and more comfortable cabins.
1884 The Beginning
Rack and pinions at first – the first means of transport to the newly built Germania was a rack-and-pinion railway that ran on rails through the vineyards.
1953 Foundation of the Cable Car Company
Because the rack-and-pinion railway had been severely damaged during the war and could no longer be used, in the summer of 1953, a group of business people, the town of Rüdesheim and the Rheingau region decided to found a cable car company.
1954 Up into the Sky
After only a short construction period, the time had come. The first cable car opened in the spring of 1954 – it was an immediate crowd-puller. Passengers travelled up to the Niederwald monument at a height of 7 metres.
1960 The Thing with the King
Rüdesheim cable car, cabin number 76 and the King of Rock’n’Roll: It was all truly a legend – because the photo of Elvis in the gondola was retouched. That’s too bad.
2004 Fiftieth Birthday
Impressive 50th anniversary – in the very same year, the cable car transported its 30 millionth passenger.
2005 Cable Car 2.0
A new cable car was installed in this year, with 85 modern gondolas in a charming retro look hovering 15 metres above the vines.
2014 Tourists on the Rise
This year, the cable car transported its 35 millionth visitor. As always safely and soundly – because there have never been any accidents on the cable car.
The valley station of the cable car has been reconstructed to be barrier-free, comfortable and hospitable.