On Sunday 16th July, we were invited to go on an adventure in the trees with Go Ape at Crathes Castle in Aberdeenshire. Steven and I have been thinking of going to Go Ape for such a long time, and we were so excited to offered such an amazing opportunity.
Now, we love an adventure. We’ve always been an outdoorsy couple, and we are always searching for new and exciting thing to do in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire. If we’re not dandering by the beach, or finding a new local landmark to visit we’re always looking for something to do! We’ve both been to visit Crathes Castle before and absolutely loved the grounds, so when we heard that we could get our adrenaline pumping, and conquer some fears we couldn’t wait to go!
So we hopped into our car, and took the fairly short journey outside of the city to Crathes Castle, Banchory. When we arrived, we were greeted by the happiest of faces (probably because the weather was beautiful) and began filling in our forms and reading over the safety guidelines. It took no longer than five minutes to read over the clear safety instructions. We then went over to get our harnesses fitted and have a quick practice of how to use the equipment. This briefing put our fears at ease, it showed us how simple the equipment was to use thanks to the colour coordination! Once we completed the training site, we raced to the front of the queue so that we could speed ahead of everyone else in our session and we were off.
Despite being absolutely petrified of heights, Steve gave his absolute all and conquered his fears. Even conquering the huge Tarzan swing on the final site. TWICE. I mean, I’m talking about someone who gets sweaty palms if I lean over a barrier at the top of a building! I’ve never felt so proud of someone in my life! He absolutely nailed it.
I decided I wasn’t going to give myself an easy ride, opting for the difficult level on the last two sites and I am so glad I did. I got such a huge sense of achievement after mastering them. Having the option to opt out of the more challenging tasks is great too, because if you’re a little more weary of heights or if you’re getting tired by the end, you can opt for the slightly less difficult obstacles meaning you can carry on with your adventure! The zip wires were definitely the highlight of the day for me, landing that final HUGE zip wire on my FEET was such a great sense of achievement as I’d been landing on my bum all day whilst the boys were landing on their feet every single time. I loved the challenge of figuring out the best way to navigate the obstacles, and trying to keep my balance on the stirrups (aka ropes hanging from trees with little silver hoops to stick your feet in…lord help me!). We were actually so good as a team that we managed to get so far ahead of the other 16 people in our session that all four of our group were allowed to do the final big Tarzan swing twice! Talk about powering ahead!
We genuinely had one of the best days we have had in a long time. Monkeying around in the trees took us back to our childhood years of feeling fearless and taking any chance we were ever offered. It was so much fun, and at the grand old age of 23, I can definitely say that you are NEVER going to be too old to get to Go Ape and have an adventure. I loved the fact that we were able to take our cameras into the trees with us as it meant we could capture some of our new favourite memories.
It’s perfect for all of the family, and gives adults a chance to get involved and join in the fun rather than watching from the side lines, which is a huge bonus because it’s another chance to build some great family memories, tackle some of your greatest fears and genuinely just enjoy yourself. When I was telling my parents about our day, they were both so keen to give it a try themselves, which just goes to show that it’s open and accessible to anyone of any age!
The prices are £33 for an adult (16 and over), and £25 for children (age 10-15).
When it comes to facilities nearby, you’ve got the beautiful Crathes grounds to wander through after you’ve finished, and a cute and quaint café to sit and have a bite to eat or a wee coffee. We loved the fact we could make a day of it, getting to take in the beautiful landscape of Crathes Castle, as well as sitting in the sunshine having a VEGAN sandwich. Yeah, that’s right the café has vegan options (as well as loads of other options too). The general location of Go Ape Crathes makes the entire experience even more enjoyable.
Let us know if you’ve been to Go Ape or if you’re planning to go soon!
We’d love to see your photos too!
Thanks again to Go Ape for inviting us, we love that we’re now part of the Tribe.
Ysabelle & Steven