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The time I tackled a ropes course IN malmedy
4 MINUTES OF READING
If I had to name one activity that is both thrilling and challenging it would definitely have to be a treetop adventure course. It’s the perfect choice if you want to pretend you’re an adventurer as well as a stuntperson. To experience this challenging adventure, we headed to the Malmedy Youth Hostel.
The Malmedy Youth Hostel is unique in its kind, a real gem, very clean and with a really friendly atmosphere. The Malmedy Youth Hostel is unique in its kind, a real gem, very clean and with a really friendly atmosphere. It is one of the jewels of the Ardennes’ Ecotourism Club. For breakfast, you will be served a tasty selection of gourmet treasures from local food networks. Perfect for enjoying a healthy and balanced breakfast, and an eco-friendly one to boot!
As Antoine Lavoisier discovered “Nothing is lost, nothing is created, everything is transformed”. And this adage is perfectly suited to the Hostel's philosophy, where rainwater is collected for cleaning the bicycles and flushing the toilets. They have also implemented several measures aiming to preserve the site’s biodiversity, such as a learning pond where children can learn about pond life.
We slept there and thought the place was outstanding, a lot better than many a hotel we have stayed in. Many kudos to the inn for offering so much more than accommodation: the hostel offers a wide range of activities, among which...wait for it...yes, good guess: treetop adventures! Once we’ve all been properly introduced, we set off with a group of about twenty people, with a distinct family-oriented atmosphere, and accompanied by excited chatter of parents and children impatient to do what they came for: have a great time!
So that we can all get to know each other and bond as a team, we all leave for our treetop adventure on foot, so we can chat among ourselves along the way and discover the woodland setting that is reminiscent of the landscapes that are typical of the Ardennes.
When we arrive, we discover an attractive, convivial and – most importantly – a densely wooded area, perfect for our treetop adventure. The course is not that big, yet promises to deliver plenty of electrifying thrills. While we wait to tackle our treetop adventure, we are split into two groups, in order to avoid bottlenecking the course. The first group climbs up towards the course while we stay on the ground. But, no fear, while we are waiting we also enjoy our share fun as we get to try our hand at archery. It is quite a lively group and as the day wears on, there is a lot of good-natured banter as we learn how to handle a bow and arrow. At one point, we even decide to start our very own archery competition in order to spice things up. Archery requires a lot of patience, control and a high level of concentration. We have a great time testing this precision sport, which I knew next to nothing about, and we really get into it. Very soon, we are exhilarated by the experience and both children and parents are delighted by the experience.
Archery really stimulates all of your senses
Tackling a ropes course gives you quite a buzz, but you really need to concentrate!
Getting high…up in the air
Once we’re done playing Robin Hood with our bows and arrows, it’s time to roll up our sleeves and get down to business…off we go for our treetop adventure! After listening to the instructor’s extremely important instructions, we go into the small wood to take our places and venture out onto the ropes course. The woodland setting is quite beautiful and the course totally blends into its woodland surroundings. Armed with our snap hooks and hoisted into our harnesses we start our adventure and tackle the ten or so obstacles that line this wonderful, canopy experience. We travel through the course, alternating between balance beams, rope bridges and thrilling zip lines.
We tackle the course at our own pace and without feeling any pressure to perform. Slowly but surely, we progress, suspended high up in the air. Parents and children alike have a whale of a time and the whole experience is quite a thrill. Dangling from zip cords or rope bridges high up in the air, there are times when we fancy ourselves proper stuntmen! We travel from tree to tree by walking on ropes, balancing on wooden logs or other equally fun obstacles. No one pushes you, so you can enjoy the experience at your own pace.
Hush! Concentration required...
Even though our treetop adventure is perfectly safe, it is important to note that the experience requires a certain level of concentration in order to avoid hurting yourself or giving yourself a bit of a scare. A ropes course in the treetops is also a great way to push your limits when you are a little scared of heights. Because you feel safe, it makes it easier to push your limits and to surpass yourself. We feel less comfortable tackling some of the challenges, so this is a great opportunity for fighting our slight fear of heights and pushing ourselves physically and mentally. The feeling of wellbeing that submerges us after facing our fears is simply fabulous. It’s great to feel proud of our achievements, and overcoming the challenges bolsters our confidence and self-esteem. Obstacle after obstacle, we travel through the treetops and gain a new sense of freedom.
Tackling a ropes course is a great way to face your fears and bolster your self-esteem
There are plenty of different obstacles to tackle and we have a great time conquering the ropes course. I like the fact that there is a lot of variety; you go from whooshing down a zip line to balancing on wooden logs. The course provides a variety of thrills and sensations, but we also enjoy the peace and quiet of the location, set in the heart of nature. There are no disruptions, which allows us to centre ourselves and enjoy the experience to the full.
We embark upon the last zip line on the course and enjoy a final thrill before handing our zip line harnesses and helmets back to the instructors. I must admit our treetop adventure was quite tiring and it's a relief to feel the ground under our feet again. We have conquered the course and are really delighted. We set off back to the Youth Hostel on foot, so we can enjoy reliving our thrilling experience along the way.
Once we get back, we decide to enjoy a drink on the Hostel’s beautiful terrace. The perfect location to get our strength back, or – for those of us who still have some energy left – play a game of table-football.
Enjoy this experience
The Malmedy Youth Hostel is open all year round, except between 06/01 and 20/01, it has rooms with 4 to 8 beds. Breakfast made with local and sustainable produce, tons of services as well as a variety of entertaining activities such as the ropes course. The ropes courses is available tor groups of a minimum of 15 people all year round and to individual travellers during the summer season. Treetop adventures are usually organised on Friday afternoons. Reception is open from 09:00 to 22:00.
We recommend you contact the Hostel for an estimate. Nightly rates from € 19 per person and per night, breakfast included.