Whether you are a beginner, intermediate, or a pro rock climber, we have got your covered.
Rock Climbing is one of the many sports in which location plays the biggest role. The variations in types of rock climbing and the differences in people’s choice make it very difficult to create an absolute list. Boulderers go for the best grip, while free climbers search for steep locations. Similarly, top ropers play safe, while aid climbers take on the trickiest of challenges.
To help you get most of your experience we have created an ultimate location guide for rock climbers of all categories.
Table of Contents
Top 5 Rock Climbing Places In The World
- Best for Boulderers: Fontainebleau
- Best for Aid Climbers: Yosemite National Park
- Best for Sport Climbers: Smith Rock
- Best for Alpine Climbers: Zermatt
- Best for All-round Climbers: Red Rocks
- Best for Beginners: Joshua Tree
- Best for Backpackers + Climbers: Tonsai and Railay
Best for Boulderers: Fontainebleau
Where: In a forested area South of Paris
When: Between August to September and April to May
If you haven’t heared about Fontainebleau, then probably you aren’t a rock-climbing fan! Why? Because many believe you can’t say that you can climb until and unless you have climbed in Fontainebleau!
Since 19th century French climbers practiced bouldering and climbed in Fountainebleau to mainly train for mountain climbing. Fountainebleau is famous for giving birth to “bouldering”, to an extent that even the grading scale in bouldering is named as the Font scale. The best part about the location is the smooth sandstones which are considered the best amongst others.
If you are preparing for mountain climbing, and want to find the best place to train and practice, then, believe me, this is the best!
Best for Aid Climbers: Yosemite National Park
Where: Yosemite, USA
When: Late spring and early summer/late summer and early autumn
If you want to dive into a sea of granite, and surf on microscopic cracks and footholds along with enjoying one of the most breathtaking views, then the Yosemite National Park is waiting for you!
But don’t get deluded by its beauty and popularity, as it is one of the hardest climbs across the world. Alex Honnold, the world’s most renowned rock climber, gained his popularity by climbing the 3000ft iconic granite wall; El Captain without any gear.
So, if you claim that you are a serious aid climber, and you haven’t mounted this beauty, then forget about it, you are a liar!
Best for Sport Climbers: Smith Rock
Where: Central Oregon’s High Desert near the communities of Redmond and Terrebonne
When: Best time to climb is in winter
Smith Rock is one of nature’s best gifts to humanity. Evolved from volcanic eruptions and shaped with the Crooked River, this area has a geology of over a million years. The basalt and tuff formations make it ideal for all levels of sport climbing. As the capital and modern American birthplace of sport climbing, the Smith Rock is rated 5.14 and has more than 1800 climbing routes.
Along with a challenging sport climbing arena, Smith Rock offers exclusive nature exploration. The Crooked River, lush foliage, and abundant wildlife make it a perfect spot for enjoying nature along with sport climbing.
Best for Alpine Climbers: Zermatt
Where: Southern Switzerland’s Valais canton – at the foot of the Matterhorn
When: June to September
If you are a fan of rock and snow, then don’t wander to other locations, as this is the fiercest alpine climbing location.
Quench your thirst with height and snow, climb the 15000ft Matterhorn with crampons, axes, and ropes. Tearing through the glaciers and observing the world from extraordinary heights is a dream come true for climbers.
Think of all the beauty you are about to observe while climbing to the peak and you will never derail.
Best for All-round Climbers: Red Rocks
Where: Western United States, near Morrison, Colorado
When: March to May/ September to November
Las Vegas has its surprises, as nature’s serene beauty lies parallel to an industrious metropolitan. As the name suggests, Red Rocks is famous for the bright red color of the smooth sandstones rising from the Nevada desert.
You can find almost any type of climbing amongst these gigantic rocks. Multiple terrains including single pitches and 2000ft multi-pitches allow all types of climbing from bouldering to trad to sport climbing. You can find a handheld or a foothold almost every time and everywhere. Unlike, Yosemite’s tricky granites, and Dolomite’s sketchy rocks, these Aztec sandstones prove to be a nature’s mercy upon climbers.
Best for Beginners: Joshua Tree
Where: Southern California, United States
When: Best between October to November/ March to April
Whether you are a fan of the great symbolic Joshua Tree or you are a dedicated beginner rock-climber, this place is meant for you. The short and diverse rocks make it an excellent place to practice a number of different climbs in a single day. The rocks are all made up of quartz monzonite, a very rough type of granite, which enables beginners to depend upon its reliability and stability. Beginners of all types of climbing can practice here, as there are more than eight thousand routes with a broad range of difficulty levels.
Best for Backpackers + Climbers: Tonsai and Railay
When: October to March
If you are a multi-purpose climber, I mean if you are on a backpacking trip with your friends, and you desire to experience climbing as well, then you will find your heaven in Tonsai and Railay!
Beach, bar, and mountains, you will find everything in this paradise. There are ideal, overhanging dividers legitimately over this sandy seashore, and a bar straightforwardly underneath, brimming with individual climbers. Would you be able to envision a superior area for a casual climbing occasion? Well, I can’t. This “seashore” that I simply portrayed is extremely two climbing spots close to Krabi in Thailand: Tonsai and Railay. During the climbing season, these two zones are changed into an agreeable network of similarly invested climbers and hippies from everywhere throughout the world.
In Tonsai and Railay, kinship and simplicity summarize the lifestyle when visiting. In the case of voyaging solo, finding a climbing accomplice is as simple as it gets, simply appears at the bar.