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Five Great Rock Climbing Destinations

Updated on February 11, 2011

Rock climbing has fast become one of the most popular sports among adventure travellers. It is an exciting and thrilling activity that can be enjoyed by people of any skill level, making it accessible to virtually anyone.

There are literally thousands of natural places to go rock climbing, but if you're looking for a bit of extra adventure, you should try looking beyond your nearest national park.

Here are some of the most outstanding locations to go rock climbing, world-wide. Be aware that several of these destinations are exceptionally challenging and not for the casual climber.

El Capitan
El Capitan

El Capitan

Probably the best known of all US climbing locations, El Capitan is located in the Yosemite National Park. El Capitan is the largest exposed granite monolith in the world, and towers 7,569 feet above sea level. There are routes of varying degrees of difficulty, with the passage known as "the Nose" being one of the most challenging. Other good climbs can be found in Yosemite at Half Dome and the Cathedrals. If you prefer an easier climb, Yosemite Park is filled with rocky areas that should suit any level of climber. Yosemite Climbing Info


Try out some new scenery at this New Zealand rock climbing spot. The Wharepapa region is home to a number of excellent climbing destinations. Most of the climbs are on crags and cliff faces, with elevations reaching around 100 feet. What it lacks in sheer height, the Wharepapa area boasts many unusually shaped rocks, giving you a unique climbing experience at every location. Too many names spots to list, but places like Secret Valley have climbs called the Castle, Echo Cliffs and the Cosmic Wall. So many rocks will keep you busy for weeks of climbing. A great destination if you're not looking for extreme climbs, but more variety in your ascents. Wharepapa Climbing Info

Paarl Rock

Paarl Rock (also known as Pearl Mountain) is located in South Africa and comes in second to El Capitan as the next largest granite outcropping in the world. It's a very smooth and rounded rock, making climbing difficult for lack of handholds. There are about a dozen bolted routes up Paarl, with all of them appropriate only for experienced climbers. Other climbing locations in South Africa include the dramatic Drakensberg (Dragon Mountains) and Waterval Boven. South Africa Climbing Info

Kalymnos Island
Kalymnos Island

Kalymnos Island

Kalymnos is quite a tourist spot during the summer, due to the lovely Greek beaches but you'll find the area much quieter during the spring and fall. There are almost a thousand bolted sport routes on the island, with most climbing over limestone crags. You'll find the best climbing near the town of Massouri, but there are good climbs all over the island. Kalymnos Climbing Info

Skaha Climbing Bluffs

The Skaha Bluffs are located in Penticton, British Columbia (Canada) and will provide you with more than 50 cliffs to choose from. Most heights are under 100 feet, but there are many great formations and routes available. Access may be limited as public access for parking has become a problem. Skaha Bluffs Climbing Info


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    • profile image

      carpet cleaners banora point 7 years ago

      "Try out some new scenery at this New Zealand rock climbing spot. The Wharepapa region is home to a number of excellent climbing destinations"

      Jezz bro - that's my old back yard - me and the boys used to play up in them mountains - still got plenty scars to boot.

      Great read - brought back a few memories

      Cheers bro

    • agusfanani profile image

      agusfanani 8 years ago from Indonesia

      Useful hub for rock climbers. Thanks

    • profile image

      indoorrockclimb 9 years ago

      Great site. Thank you for the information.

      Checkout my hub at

    • spedia profile image

      spedia 9 years ago from Poland


      Realy nice job! I'm just looking for new climbing destination and Your hub helps me a lot. I'm from Poland and Kalymnos or Sardynia is great for me. Thx!

      Pls see my hub if You intetrested in. Im also looking for fans :) but there is no Climbing group on hubpages :(