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THE TIME I TRIED TONS OF THRILLING ACTIVITIES WITH The Outsider Ardennes
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The forest landscapes and rolling hillsides of the Ardennes are perfect for trying out all kinds of outdoor activities surrounded by nature. Today I am taking you with me to discover a must-do activity that you really should try when visiting the Ardennes: rock climbing. We found the perfect spot, ideally suited for rock climbing and other adventurous activities, so off we drive towards Comblain-La-Tour in the Hamoir valley, in the Province of Liège. As soon as we arrive in the sizeable quarry - quite aptly nicknamed "The Rock" - we catch a glimpse of the jagged rocks towering above the lush landscape.
A unique location
The quarry really forms a stunning setting, part of it is even listed as a Natura 2000 site, and thanks to this special status its biodiversity is protected. As the minutes go by, we discover a variety of activities along the cliffs and realise we are in for quite an athletic afternoon. When we come face to face with the rock face we are genuinely impressed by the sheer height of the cliffs towering above us. The spot is a genuine theme park for thrill seekers. It has rope bridges, via ferratas (Italian for 'iron path'), climbing walls, zip lines etc. Everything is on hand to enjoy a rollicking time in a unique setting in the middle of nature. Just by looking at this enormous and well equipped playing field we can feel the adrenaline soaring through our bodies.
The Rock quarry is the perfect place to rise above the world and try out loads of thrilling activities
To explore this huge site, we are welcomed by an instructor who will accompany us on our outing and guide us during our activities, which makes us feel we are in safe hands. Our climbing instructor – who has a lovely cheerful and enthusiastic personality – immediately puts us in the best possible mindset to tackle the thrilling challenges of the next 2 hours to come. We put on our climbing our harnesses and helmets and set off to conquer “the Rock”...And, we enjo a stroke of luck: there's no one else there, so the two of us can really fully enjoy all these exhilarating activities.
Trying out a variety of activities and experiencing manifold thrilling sensations in the stunning setting of the quarry really is a delight
A wide range of exhilarating activities
There are quite a few different activities on offer here and we get off to a flying start…In order to get to the top of the rock we need to climb up via the via ferrata, an activity that is quite popular in southern Europe.
This is where we get our first kicks as we rise to the summit by using the different metal rungs and ladders that compose this “iron path” up the craggy cliff. After which we need to tackle the hanging bridges and test our sense of balance in real conditions. Of course, this is all totally safe, and we make the most of the bridges to stimulate our senses in particular our sense of balance and our head for heights. At times, we are more than 20 meters above ground, which is quite awe-inspiring. But surprisingly enough, we are really taken in by our stunning location and feel safe enough to enjoy the view the via ferrata affords.
We continue our adrenaline-filled adventure with abseiling, and we rappel down the rock face like real mountain climbers: this one will definitely get the adrenaline pumping through your veins! We climb up, we go down and yet each activity is different, so we get to experience plenty of different sensations. We even climb up ropes hanging down from the cliff which gives us quite a buzz.
What really makes it special is the fact that the setting is extremely peaceful as well as scenic, so we can concentrate and thoroughly enjoy our adventure. Between each activity, we feast our eyes on the lush vegetation and scenic cliffs in this charming quarry. It so much more enjoyable to practice our rock climbing and abseiling skills in this magical setting rather than on a run-of-the-mill climbing wall…The thrills and spills are so much more exciting here and we live each moment to the full!
The last free fall provides unforgettable thrills
To cap off our day, we head towards the last activity which turns out to be the most stimulating activity in what can only be described as an drenalin-soaked day. Our next stop is the zip line, but not just any old zip line...The traditional gliding has been spiced up by adding a genuine free fall into the void at the very beginning of the course. We need to jump off the cliff from a height of 20 meters, literally jumping into the void. The free fall provides unforgettable thrills; we fall straight down for 3-4 meters before the zip line takes over and we glide gently along the zip line towards the surface. I cannot even begin to describe how incredibly exhilirating this experience was, it was absolutely amazing!
You can also go for a spot of caving and discover some of the Ardennes caves, but unfortunately for us, it is quite impossible to take pictures inside the depths of these caves, so we recommend you take an underground journey and discover the bowels of the Earth for yourself.
The perfect playing ground for a wide range of activities
We really enjoyed our daredevil afternoon, and enjoyed the activities so much that we are genuinely starry-eyed. We just loved the thrills and spills and feel as if we’ve just enjoyed an epic adventure, because this is what you can expect with The Outsider Ardennes: a day packed with adventure, conquering “The Rock” in Hamoir. A great experience you can enjoy with friends, your family, even with colleagues. There are many other activities in the area or on the spot. You can for example learn rock climbing thanks to qualified climbing instructors or simply go for a bike ramble or canoeing. One thing is for sure: we will remember this fun-packed day and its roller coaster of emotions for a very long time to come. There are also courses that are specifically designed for children like the rafting workshop, where they can build their own raft and sail down the river on it. Perfect for an adventure with friends or to learn how to work together as a team. And of course, the area’s stunning natural setting reallyis a great bonus. We hope to come back one day and enjoy some of the Ardennes' many other highlights!
Enjoy this experience
The Outsider Ardennes
Rue du Moulin de Fairon 11, 4180 Hamoir (Belgium)
Tel.: +32 86 21 40 42
Our thrilling afternoon leaves us starry-eyed