Although rock climbing at your local gym or cliff can be exciting, it can be even more exhilarating to try climbing at a new location. If you find yourself wanting to explore new climbing destinations, summer break can be a perfect time to do that! Although some climbing areas may be hot during the summer months, there are many amazing climbing locations worldwide to choose from for your next climbing trip, and this list only encompasses a handful of our favorites.
Top Summer Rock Climbing Destinations
With so many amazing climbing areas, it can be hard to narrow down a list of the top summer rock climbing destinations, so we’ve broken it down by region. In our opinion, these lists are some of the best climbing that different regions have to offer in the summer.
Keep in mind that you won’t see places like Kalymnos on these lists since it and many other climbing destinations are known to be brutally hot in the summer months. That being said, there are plenty of famous summer destinations for climbing.
5 Best Summer Rock Climbing Destinations in America
Including both North and South America, these are some of the best summer bouldering destinations and summer roped climbing destinations that these continents have to offer.
1. New River Gorge, West Virginia
With average monthly high temperatures just breaking into the 80s in the summer and with over 3000 established routes, it’s no wonder why the “New” is one of the best summer climbing destinations in North America. Not only does it offer some great trad, toprope, and sport climbing, but it hosts some of the best summer bouldering in the US.
The area around the New River Gorge is also home to some amazing waterways, giving you ample space to cool off after a long day of climbing or just take a chill day and hang out on the water. The New is a climbing destination that every US climber should hit at least once.
2. Lander, Wyoming
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If you are looking for a summer getaway out West in the US, we suggest checking out Lander and the small climbing outcropping of Wild Iris. With over 300 established routes, the area is still growing but is already exceptional.
Although the highs can reach into the 90s in the summer, many climbers find the dry heat to be much more tolerable for climbing than comparable temperatures out east, where the humidity is higher. Lander is a great adventure town for lots of outdoor activities, so feel free to check out all the hiking and biking that the town has to offer as well.
3. Squamish, Canada
There are a few climbing areas within a short drive of Squamish that total over 1500 routes for you to explore. The summer temperatures here tend to peak in the mid 70’s, making it an excellent location for summer climbing.
Another benefit of Squamish is how easy it is to get there. Squamish is less than an hour’s drive from Vancouver, BC, and less than a four-hour drive from Seattle, WA. Packed with mountain charm and amazing views, Squamish is an excellent place for your next summer climbing trip.
4. North Conway, New Hampshire
With only around 130 routes, it might not make sense at first why North Conway makes this list of the best summer climbing destinations, but it won’t take much research to understand what makes this small destination stand out. With summer highs only pushing into the 80s and with amazingly grippy granite, it’s no wonder why this is a great summer spot.
The routes in North Conway are spectacular. Rising up through some pretty impressive forests and overlooking the White Mountains, North Conway’s climbs are truly unique.
If you are looking for a more off-the-beaten-path type climbing destination with more adventure and fewer people, look no further than the Patagonia region of Argentina and Chile. Encompassing the Southern section of the Andes Mountains, Patagonia is home to some of the world’s most spectacular climbing views.
With temperatures hardly ever getting above 70F, the temperatures are perfect for climbing. This is a great location for an adventurous climber, but we would not recommend this spot for newbies. Patagonia will present challenges but will not disappoint with spectacular routes and awe-inspiring views.
5 Best Summer Rock Climbing Destinations in Europe
Europe is home to some of the most famous historical climbing spots, but many of the most famous are simply too hot to climb in the summer. Don’t worry; there are tons of high mountain climbing destinations all across the continent, so you won’t be at a loss for summer climbing destinations in Europe.
1. Fontainebleau, France
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We would be remiss to make a list of top climbing destinations in Europe and not talk about Fontainebleau. This amazing bouldering spot just under an hour outside of Paris is known worldwide for its more than 450 boulder problems. Many of the boulders are hidden amongst the trees, keeping the rocks cool and making them great for summer climbing.
With temperatures typically peaking around 80F, the rocks are perfect for climbing. Climbers from all over the world want to climb at Fontainebleau, and the area hosts a number of large competitions throughout the year, so just be mindful that it may be busy in the summer.
2. Mallorca, Spain
Made famous by Chris Sharma, Mallorca is an island off the coast of Spain and is known for its stellar deep-water soloing. The island is also home to over 400 sport routes, making it a great climbing destination even if you don’t feel like falling into the ocean whenever you slip off a hold.
Because of its location, the daily temperature is completely dependent on the ocean breezes, but highs in the summer are usually in the mid 80’s F. With breathtaking views, delicious food, and a plethora of routes, Mallorca is sure to be on every climber’s wishlist.
3. Zermatt, Switzerland
For more mountainous climbing, Switzerland is perfect. The high peaks and high elevations make for some excellent summer climbing due to the cooler temperatures. With highs in the summer hovering around 70F, this mountainous region is perfect for the summer adventurer.
Keep in mind that these routes tend to be long and hard, so Zermatt is not the best beginner climbing destination, but for a seasoned climber looking for amazing experiences and adventure, look no further than Zermatt. Zermatt is known for mountaineering and mountain climbing, so expect many routes to be fourth-class terrain mixed with some technical climbing.
4. Peak District, UK
Covering a large area in the center of England, West of Manchester, the Peak District is home to over 13000 different established climbing routes. Summer temperatures that typically stay below 70 F make this a great place for weekend warriors and thrill-seekers alike.
With such a large area encompassed by the Peak District, it is easy to find cliffs with less foot traffic than some of the other climbing destinations, making this a great option for someone looking to get away from the crowds of Fontainebleau or Mallorca. With Manchester nearby, getting to the Peak District is relatively straightforward, making this a popular holiday climbing destination.
5. Dolomites, Italy
If you are looking for long, multi-pitch routes in a stunning location, look no further than the Dolomites in Italy. This region is known for its exceptional peaks and gorgeous routes up them. The region’s summer temperatures are the lowest on this list as it typically stays closer to 60 F in the summer, making it perfect climbing temperatures!
The Dolomites are located in a pretty remote area in Northern Italy, so come prepared for some more logistically intense travel days. That being said, the region is astonishing to look at. With high peaks soaring to over 3000 meters, this marvelous part of the Alps is sure to wow you.
Top 5 Summer Rock Climbing Destinations in Asia
Although these are some of the best rock climbing locations in Asia, we feel it’s necessary to discuss the temperatures that you should expect at these destinations. Many Asian climbing locations are more popular in the winter months and will be exceptionally hot in the summer. That being said, many will still find these some of the best rock climbing in Asia.
1. Railay, Thailand
With spectacular cliffs soaring above a picturesque ocean scene, it’s no wonder that the climbs at Railay are so popular. Unfortunately, since it is quite popular, expect lines if you arrive at popular cliffs during peak times. Don’t worry, though; you’ll wait for a view!
2. Cantabaco, Philippines
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In the limestone cliffs above Cantabaco are more than 50 epic climbs. This destination is not quite as popular as some others, making it a great option for those looking to avoid the crowds of some common climbing spots.
3. Cat Ba Island, Vietnam
Offering both inland climbing cliffs and spectacular deep water soloing, Cat Ba Island has an amazing variety of climbs to offer. Located near some pretty big tourist destinations in Halong Bay, Cat Ba Island is just far enough away to avoid some of the major crowds.
4. Nam Pha Pa Yai, Thailand
Only a few hours outside Bangkok, Nam Pha Pa Yai is a great day trip from the city or a destination all on its own. While the limestone cliffs off various styles of climbing and are sure to keep you entertained, the hiking and zipline adventures nearby offer a great option for an off day from climbing as well.
5. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Tacking a climbing adventure onto a sightseeing trip to Kuala Lumpur is a great way to add variety to your trip. Near the Batu Caves are more than 100 exceptional climbing routes that are beginner friendly. Regardless of whether you are a new climber out sightseeing or an experienced climber looking for a fun crag, Kuala Lumpur is a great climbing location.
Why is Summer a Great Time to Go Rock Climbing?
For many families, summer is the only time they can get away for any large chunk of time, making it a popular time to go on big adventure trips, like climbing. Regardless of if you are staying in the US or heading abroad, with so many phenomenal climbing destinations to choose from, we know it can be overwhelming.
Wrapping Things Up: Top 15 Summer Rock Climbing Destinations
From the New River Gorge to Kuala Lumpur, climbing destinations are all over the world. Picking the one that is right for you can seem challenging, but we hope that by giving you some of our favourite climbing destinations in different regions of the world, we’ll help you narrow down your search as you plan your next summer climbing trip!
Looking for more guides? Check out more of our climbing tips here.
Here are a few to help you out: