8 fantastic funiculars from across the globe

From Hong Kong to Haifa, hitch a ride on one of the world’s most remarkable incline railways.

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The tunnel between Karakoy and Beyoglu in Turkey. The tunnel between Karakoy and Beyoglu in Turkey. (Photo: Koraysa / Shutterstock)

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Tünel - Istanbul, Turkey

Unlike outdoor hillside funiculars, Istanbul’s two-stop Tünel is an underground funicular, which connects the neighborhoods of Karaköy and Beyoğlu. The only sight you will see out these windows is the interior of a 1,820-foot-long tunnel wall. What the Tünel does have, however, is history. Having opened in 1875, it's the second-oldest still-in-operation underground metro line in the world (the oldest is the London Underground). At the time of its inauguration, it would have had wooden carriages powered by steam. Nowadays, electric-powered steel cars zip between the two stations in just 90 seconds. The lower station of Karaköy is adorned with traditional Turkish tilework.

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