My husband and I just celebrated our 11th wedding anniversary. To celebrate we decided to change things up a little and try something we both had never done before. We booked a sitter for our kids and spent the day at a local ropes course. Here in Stuttgart there are a few to choose from within 30-45 minutes of the city. I chose the Waldklettergarten Stuttgart course because it was within Stuttgart and easily accessible via the S-bahn.
Our day to get out on the ropes approached and I started to second-guess my adventurous spirit. Did I forget that I have a serious fear of heights? How the heck was I going to be able to go through with this? Too proud to chicken out now that everything was set, I tried to tuck away my doubts and vowed to have fun no matter what.
The day turned out to be the most beautiful weather you could ask for. Sunshine and bright blue skies from morning to night. The website said to take the S5 train to the Zuffenhausen stop and then gave walking directions. The directions were pretty clear, with one exception that you have to take the pedestrian bridge to get to the street where their directions begin. Once we figured that out, it was clear sailing. Leave about 10-15 minutes of walking time to get from the train station to the ropes course.
Once we got on site we each paid 20 euro (the adult price) for 3 hours of time on the course. They have a student price of 17 euro and a 12 and under price of 14 euro for the same amount of time. Additionally they have slightly reduced prices for families and an annual pass card. If you are looking to have a birthday party on site they can accommodate that too. More information about those rates can be found on their website. Lockers are provided for your personal items free of charge. You are not allowed to wear any kind of rings, bracelets or watches on the course so you may want to keep those valuables at home.
Once we paid we were given a start time and each received our harness and helmet. Our group was then organized in the practice area and given detailed instructions on how to suit up and then how to use our equipment properly. The instructor went through everything in German first, and then had a one-on-one with us, the only non-German speaking members of our group. Even with the little German I understood, I got most of what he was demonstrating. Everyone in the group then got to test out our new skills on the practice course before we were cleared to be able to enter the various obstacles.
My husband and I decided to test the waters on a mid-level of difficulty (and height) course first. Before you start each course, there is a sign indicating the level of difficulty, how long it should take you to complete the entire course, and how many meters off the ground the course is. I have to say that I was pretty nervous at first, but once I got onto the first obstacle I was pleasantly surprised that my fear of heights did not rear it’s ugly head. I think it was because, 1. I was absolutely sure I would not fall. I was the one checking and double-checking every connection at each obstacle and 2. I seriously had to use all my brainpower and physical power to concentrate on the task at hand that I had nothing left to worry about how high I was off the ground! Almost all the obstacles test you balance, some also testing your strength as well. At the end of each course is the best part…a zip line to get you back down to the ground!
After tackling a level 2 course without too much difficultly we decided to take it up a notch and try a level 3 course. This one was a bit higher up in the air and the obstacles were definitely more physically demanding, at the end though we had a higher and faster zip line which made it all worth it. We didn’t end up having enough time to try the highest ropes course, and quite frankly my arms and legs were tired from swinging, balancing, and pulling myself up and over all the crazy hurdles from the other courses we did. We both agreed though that this was a place we would definitely want to try again and it would be a great place to bring our adventurous family and friends when they visit us.
The smaller courses would be great for those family members not so physically inclined or the smaller members of your family. The website gives details on the minimum reach length required for each course. I believe that this is the only requirement for being able to go on the courses. I do not believe there is a minimum age.
Waldklettergarten Stuttgart also has a reservation page on their website that you can utilize if you will be having a large group or want a specific start time. I am sure in the summer it is busier then it was when we visited, but I decided to not make a reservation and we had no trouble getting a spot shortly after we arrived. The site does have a biergarten on site (I mean, we are in Germany after all!) After a few hours on the course that beer sure does taste good!
Hirschsprung Allee 5