Abseiling from the Euromast: The Highest Abseil in Europe

Abseiling from the Euromast in Rotterdam.  View from the restaurant.

Me waving hello to everyone having lunch at the Euromast Restaurant.

I peered over the edge of the Euromast, the tallest building in Rotterdam. It was a long way down. 100 meters to be exact. I gave my safety harness a hard tug and then swung my leg over the ledge.

The Euromast, the tallest building in Rotterdam.

The Euromast, the tallest building in Rotterdam.

I felt strangely calm for someone about to jump off a ledge, although technically it wasn’t a jump, it was one simple step that would lead me into thin air. In other circumstances I might have spent more time pondering my sanity – I should be scared out of my wits to do this.  I grasped the rope with both hands, looking for the tell-tale nervous hand shake. Instead my hands were steady in the proper hand over hand position.

Getting ready to step off the ledge while abseiling from the Euromast.

Getting ready to step off the ledge while abseiling from the Euromast.

It was time to step off the ledge into the thin air where I would remain for the next 5-10 minutes as I worked the ropes through the carabiner and maneuvered myself down 100 meters to safety. I hesitated. My guide was above me helping another abseiler. I wanted him near me. I felt calm, but still, he WAS my safety blanket. Another guide urged me on.

Hesitating before taking the final step into thin air to start the abseil.

Hesitating before taking the final step into thin air to start the descent.

And so with just the slightest hesitation, I took the biggest step of my life….

More than halfway down while abseiling from the Euromast.

More than halfway down while abseiling from the Euromast.

I lifted my heel first and slowly uncurled my toes into….nothingness.  I was hanging 100 meters precariously by  two ropes. I stopped for several seconds to enjoy the views over Rotterdam.

Beautiful views over Rotterdam  from the Euromast.

Beautiful views over Rotterdam from the Euromast.

But I realized rather quickly as my heart quicked that views are better enjoyed when your feet are firmly on the ground rather than hanging in thin air. I started pulling up on the rope with my right hand, pulling it up through the carabeaner with the left making slow progress at first. But as the ropes slackened it became easier with each tug of my hands. Before I knew it I felt my toes, then my heels touch on the pavement. I felt a simultaneous wave of disappointment and pride as they did. It was over AND I had done it.

Abseiling from the Euromast was exhilaritng, but also strangely calming. I loved EVERY second of it. Several of my fellow abseilers were understandably quite nervous.  Now that I’ve officially made it and am safely back on ground I’ve got plenty of time to wonder, Why the heck was stepping off a ledge NOT nerve wracking?

Tips for Abseiling from the Euromast in Rotterdam

  • Abseiling only costs €49.50.  I thought this was a VERY reasonable fee for the experience.
  • Abseiling is available on weekends from May – September, weather dependent (high winds = no abseiling, but a bit of rain is OK).
  • Book ahead to ensure there is availabililty. It’s a popular activity.
  • Have someone take photos of your abseiling experience from the restaurnt. You can get some great photos. (A special thank you to Kristen from A Pair of Boots and a Backpack for taking the photos of me).
  • If you would prefer to watch abseilers rather than doing it yourself, the restaurant provides front seat views!
  • Visit the official Euromast webpage for further info.

Thank you to Travel Bloggers Unite and Rotterdam Tourism for making my visit possible.  As always, all opinions expressed are my own.

Laurel Robbins is the founder of Monkeys and Mountains, an adventure travel blog and company that helps people plan their active holidays in a sustainable way. Although Canadian, she lives in Germany. You can find her in the mountains on most weekends.
2017-09-29T14:00:10+00:00

9 Comments

  1. Megan May 22, 2013 at 5:05 pm - Reply

    You are much braver than I am! I could hardly even stand at the top of the Euromast without feeling kind of sick from the height! I bet the views were fantastic though! 🙂

    • Laurel May 28, 2013 at 6:47 pm - Reply

      @Megan – I’m not scared of heights fortunately, and the views were great!

  2. Leigh May 25, 2013 at 2:41 am - Reply

    You do manage to have a lot of fun. I would so do this!!

    • Laurel May 28, 2013 at 6:42 pm - Reply

      @Leigh – I try :). I could totally see you doing this!

  3. Monique May 28, 2013 at 8:05 pm - Reply

    Unbelievable. Sounds like an amazing experience. I’ve been to the top of the Euromast, but stayed inside and kept both feet firmly planted on the ground. 😉

  4. Marisol@TravelingSolemates May 30, 2013 at 4:43 pm - Reply

    Hi Lauren, you’re so brave!! Looks like an amazing adventure. I’m afraid my nerves will get the best out of me just by hanging on that ledge.

    • Laurel June 21, 2013 at 4:13 pm - Reply

      @Marisol – I loved it and felt like my nerves should have been acting up more considering what I was about to do – that’s what had me worried 🙂

  5. Julika May 31, 2013 at 1:52 pm - Reply

    Great description of what it feels like to step into nothingness in that height! I’m still so impressed that you did that! Must have been an amazing experience!

    • Laurel June 21, 2013 at 4:09 pm - Reply

      @Julika – Thank you. It was really fun and I would recommend it for anyone who is not afraid of heights.

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