Rock climbing in Greece

In mountainous Greece climbing is an absolute all time favorite! And there are many excellent rock-climbing spots in the Greek islands as well as on the Greek mainland. You will find that Greece with all its mountains, gorges and canyons has totally fantastic spots for climbing – and the views are awesome.

Kalymnos – famous among climbers

One spot especially has become famous among climbers from all over the world. The island of Kalymnos is to be found in the Dodecanese. With its huge limestone rock formations on its west coast, Kalymnos has developed into an extremely popular rock-climbing destination in Greece over the last decades. In Kalymnos you will find climbing clubs organizing climbing excursions on Kalymnos as well on Telendos, the neighboring island.

Rock climbing in Kalymnos, Greece
Rock climbing at sunset in Kalymnos

Many of Kalymnos’ more than 2,000 climbing routes are still unexplored. Most routes are very safe with climbs pre-equipped with permanent drilled-in-bolts. Every October a climbing festival is arranged on Kalymnos where climbers from all over the world are attending.

Rock climbing in Meteora

Travel to Meteora, Thessaly, Greece
Meteora at sunset

In the northern part of the Greek mainland you find another extremely popular rock-climbing destination in the Meteora. Meteora is a landmark of mainland Greece, famous for its huge rock formations, on top of which traditional Orthodox monasteries are built several centuries ago. Therefore, this place sculpted millenia ago by time itself, is considered a holy monastic community which should not be disturbed, and the climbers are restricted to a designated area of the Meteora. Also, here, climbing and hiking trail festivals are organized in autumn.

Rock climbing is an adventure and extremely demanding sports activity. It demands a lot of physical skills such as endurance, agility and coordination of the body parts along with great mental control. Rock climbing requires a lot of training in climbing techniques and usage of climbing equipment. A lot of rock climbing clubs offer both equipement and courses.

Epirus, Crete, and Thrace

Most rock climbing activities in Greece are practiced in Epirus, Crete, Macedonia, Thrace, and Peloponnese. It is not a particularly popular sports among the Greeks, but the excitement it offers is superb.

Kalymnos – the ultimate climbing destination

The most famous rock climbing area within Greece is found at Kalymnos. This small island near Kos is an excellent sport climbing destination with great weather throughout the year and many superb bolted limestone routes at every grade. The majority of the rock climbing is found within walking distance of Massouri, which offers mainly 1 and 2-pitch sport routes from fine 4+ slabs to overhanging and pumpy 8c+ routes.

Single-pitch or multi-pitch routes

There is a diverse range of rock climbing to be found in Crete, from single pitch sports routes to long traditional multi-pitch routes requiring natural protection such as nuts and friends. The sports climbing on Crete is concentrated around Kapetaniana to the south of the capital Iraklion.

Rock climbing in Greece - bolts and rope

Limestone rock climbing

In the popular holiday area of Argolis there is some excellent sports climbing to be found on solid limestone rock, with the majority of the routes being single pitch. However all of the climbing areas are only partially developed, which means there is a massive opportunity to establish new routes in this area.

Climbing at Meteora

Travel to Meteora, Greece
Meteora, Greece

In the north west of Greece lies the rock climbing area at Meteora. Here there are many fantastic towers of rock up to 300 m high. There are over 600 routes many of which are bolted.

Around Patras there are several bolted limestone rock climbing areas. The majority of the routes are single pitch, though the crag at Varasova has multi-pitch routes up to 800 m long.

Climbing spots and clubs