Top 21 Rock Climbing Destinations Around Asia

Having picked up rock climbing just over 5 years now, this crazy outdoor sport has brought me places I have never thought would be possible. Whether you are a novice rock climber or a beginner who has just gotten your level 2 rock climbing certificate, here’s compiling the Best Asia outdoor rock climbing destinations that are affordable, popular and most importantly, great for climbing.

Asia Outdoor Rock Climbing Destinations – Top 21

-MALAYSIA-

1. Batu Caves, Kuala Lumpur

Multi Pitch Point at Batu Caves, Kuala Lumpur | Best Climbing Asia Destinations
Multi-Pitch Point  – at Batu Caves, Kuala Lumpur. Trembling in fear to take this shot~! | Best Climbing Asia Destinations

Batu Caves, the nearest destination from Singapore just 45 minutes away by flight, this stunning cave nest in Bukit Tukun KL is not just popular for the Grand Hindu cave temple, it is also a hot spot for some great granite rock climbing. There are 3 very popular spots for climbing here, Damai Wall, Nanyang Wall and Nyamuk Wall, and varying degree of difficulty depending on your experience level. If you are a beginner, start off at Damai Wall, with plenty of easy routes with large jug-gy holds.

Damai Rock Wall with its infamous cave | Rock climbing in KL Malaysia | Rock climbing near me
Damai Rock Wall with its infamous cave | Rock climbing in KL Malaysia| Rock climbing near me
Climb all day long at Nanyang Wall. Ended up posing for photos | Rock climbing in KL Malaysia | Rock climbing near me
Climb all day long at Nanyang Wall. Ended up posing for photos | Rock climbing in KL Malaysia | Rock climbing near me

Look out for the occasional monkey with white panda eyes, always curious to see us ‘monkey-like’ humans scaling his grounds.

2. Bukit Takun, Malaysia

Bukit Takun has an impressive limestone formation, measuring about 300 meters in height, that is located just a half hour drive from Kuala Lumpur. You’ll find both single and multi-pitch routes, most of which are bolted, and range from beginner to expert difficulty. Bukit Takun is also located conveniently close to Batu Caves, so you can definitely visit both in the same trip.

3. Bukit Keteri, Malaysia

Located in Perlis, about a 4-5 hour drive outside of Kuala Lumpur, Bukit Keteri is a climbing area that the climbing routes was bolted by members of the Mammut and Camp 5 team bolting expedition. Offering about 50 routes, this area is less-frequented compared to the other popular spots, so you should be aware of old rusty bolts or unmaintained routes.

-THAILAND-

4. Krabi Railey Island, Thailand

Rock climbing in ktabi thailand | Best Climbing Destinations
Rock climbing in Krabi Thailand. Photo credited to Si Ying | Best Climbing Destinations

The most popular rock climbing in Southeast Asia is here in Krabi Thailand. What makes this location so popular with both Asians, as well as international climbers all around the world, is due to a perfect match between amazing climbing routes and lovely island lifestyle – gorgeous beaches, beautiful snorkelling sites and great Thai food.

Stunning beaches and rock formations at Railey Beach in Thailand. Rock Climber's dream paradise | Best Climbing Destinations
Stunning beaches and rock formations at Railey Beach in Thailand. Rock Climber’s dream paradise | Best Climbing Destinations

Krabi has endless climbing spots, but the ones that most people start off with are ABC Wall and Thaiwand Wall, good warming up spots to prepare you for the next few days of climbing.

Krabi deep water solo - a must try for adrenaline seekers | Best Climbing Destinations
Krabi deep water solo – a must try for adrenaline seekers | Best Climbing Destinations

Krabi is also known for deep water solo, a must try for all adrenaline junkies who have a knack for ..craziness. I tried it with a group of 5 friends and it was by far the craziest activity I have ever attempted so far.

Tufas galore!
Tufas galore!

Deep water solo needs to be accompanied by a tour group, and safety of deep water solo spots needs to adhere to. For rock climbing class bookings and half day/ full day tours, you can always book there directly, either on Railay, Ton Sai or Ko Phi Phi.

If you are interested in taking climbing to the next level and pick up Multi Pitch climbing, it is available here in Thailand)

5. Crazy Horse in Chiang Mai, Thailand

Asia Outdoor rock climbing destinations - Crazy Horse in Chiang Mai
Asia Outdoor rock climbing destinations – Crazy Horse in Chiang Mai. Photo credited to allchiangmaitours

Crazy Horse is probably the most notorious route in Chiang Mai. This popular climbing area has great ‘air condition’ temperature cooling weather at certain times of the year to attract those who do not fancy the sweltering heat of Krabi, Thailand. Be surrounded by a cool bamboo forest, soak in hot springs and even take a scooter ride to explore the surrounding hills on your rest days.

Rock Climbing in southeast asia at Crazy Horse Buttress Chiang Mai Caves Mae Hong Son Loop. Stunning overhang route | Rock climbing Asia Outdoors
Rock Climbing in southeast asia at Crazy Horse Buttress Chiang Mai Caves Mae Hong Son Loop. Stunning overhang route. Photo credited to mkwild | Rock climbing Asia Outdoors

The Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Association (CMRCA) has US trained guides for those who are more inexperienced and would feel safer to be accompanied by a certified climbing guide. To get to Chiang Mai, there are many affordable budget flights from Bangkok as low as US$25 one way, or if you are coming from Singapore, there are direct flights with budget and full fright airlines.

-TAIWAN-

6. Long Dong, Taiwan

Rock Climbing on sand stone rock in longdong jiufen in taiwan | Best Climbing Destinations
Rock Climbing on sand stone rock in Longdong Jiufen in Taiwan | Best Climbing Destinations

Known for its stunning coastal views and sandstone rock formations, the next place featured for the Asia outdoor rock climbing destinations is none other than Long Dong Taiwan. This spot is extremely beautiful, especially for people who love the sea breeze and hear the crashing waves.

Downhill to the rock climbing zones in Longdong Taiwan | Rock climbing in Asia
Downhill to the rock climbing zones in Longdong Taiwan | Rock climbing in Asia

So far, this climbing spot commands the most beautiful photos, and looking back it still wows me occasionally. To get there, it requires a long train ride followed by a bus to get from Taiwan to Long Dong, Jiufen. Situated at the northern part of Taiwan, this rustic coastal area is still rather remote and not too touristy yet, so the people here aren’t exactly able to speak some basic English.

Selfie at the top of the rock climbing route in Longdong Taiwan | Best Climbing Destinations
Scary Selfie at the top of the rock climbing route in Longdong Taiwan | Best Climbing Destinations
Beautiful view of waves crashing against the shore while resting between climbs | Rock climbing in Asia
Beautiful view of waves crashing against the shore while resting between climbs | Rock climbing in Asia

However climbing here was lovely. So many areas to explore, and to get to these climbing spots require a bit of traversing, hiking and small climbing. Quite an adventure I must say.

asia outdoor rock climbing destinations -Crazy stunning sea view as you attempt the different rock climbing routes in Longdong Jiufen
Crazy stunning sea view as you attempt the different rock climbing routes in Longdong Jiufen

Warning, make sure you go in the correct season and not typhoon season, you can potentially get stranded at the climbing area when the storm suddenly comes.

7. Rehai, Near Taipei

Considered to be the best climbing area around Taipei, Rehai is primarily a sport-climbing crag offering beginner and intermediate routes. The crag offers a variety of slab and overhanging routes on volcanic andesite rock, just be aware that it’s much easier to access if you have a car. Though it’s located pretty close to Taipei, it doesn’t receive much traffic, so hopefully you will be able to enjoy some peaceful climbing.

8. Shou Shan Mountain, Khaosiung City

Located on the island’s southwest coast in Shoushan Nature Park, this crag offers a collection of high-quality limestone sport routes that could make it comparable to Crazy Horse in Thailand. You’ll find mainly intermediate routes on interesting, drippy features, along with some quality crimpy face climbing. It is located near the entrance to the visitor centre. However, do note that rock climbing in Khaosiung is prohibited now due to more frequent rock fall that area, and they have attempted to fence off the area, but people still secretly find ways to do so.

Don’t forget to check out the incredible hot pot restaurant right at the bottom of the hill after a good day of climbing.

-VIETNAM-

9. Cat Ba Island, Vietnam

Climbing in Cat Ba in Vietnam | Rock climbing in Asia
Climbing in Cat Ba in Vietnam. Photo credited to Truly-Traveled.com | Rock climbing in Asia

Have not set foot on Vietnam yet, but when I get the chance, this Cat Ba Island is on my list. Vietnam, known for its stunning cliff formations, rivers and Padi mountainous field, am not surprised why this country doesn’t have the right climate, rock formations and scenic draw factors to attract climbers from its surrounding neighbouring countries.

Best Outdoor Rock Climbing Destinations can be found in Cat Ba Island Vietnam | Best Climbing Destinations
Best Outdoor Rock Climbing Destinations can be found in Cat Ba Island Vietnam. Photo credited to cobs.org | Best Climbing Destinations

One thing that many has tried is also deep water solo at Halong Bay, a major tourist attraction in Vietnam, where many tourists experience live onboard cruise experience as they visit all these lovely cliffy spots, looking so tempting to a climber’s keen eye.

10. Huu Lung, Near Hanoi

Located north of Hanoi, Huu Lung is a beautiful, peaceful climbing area with both single and multi-pitch climbing routes. The routes are pretty newly bolted by VietClimb, and you can enjoy long, picturesque routes. Be sure to bring sufficient quickdraws for each climb and count how many you require before you start climbing!

Climbing in Asia is sure to be memorable.
Climbing in Asia is sure to be memorable.

11. Halong Bay, Vietnam

Cat Ba Island isn’t the only sport climbing that Vietnam’s Halong Bay has to offer. Crags such as Tiger Beach and the Amphitheatre offer routes ranging from 4+ to 8a (5.8-5.13) so climbers of all abilities can enjoy Vietnam’s spectacular limestone rock in this area.

You can't beat those views!
You can’t beat those views!

-CHINA-

12. Yangshuo, China

Yangshuo Grit Route at Moonhill. Photo credited to alexreshikov.com | Rock climbing in Asia
Yangshuo Grit Route at Moonhill. Photo credited to alexreshikov.com | Rock climbing in Asia

The pictures people took at this destination is enough to make you burn with desire to go. Here’s the next Asia outdoor rock climbing destinations – Yangshuo in China.

The notorious wall is situated at The Moon Hill ( Yue Liang Shan), one of the major scenic and iconic climbing spot in Yangshuo. We have heard that there is even glass bottle of alcohol places in cracks along the climb as a reward for those who have scaled that high…

Abseiling down from Moonhill in Yangshuo - image credited to topguilintravel l Rock climbing in Asia
Abseiling down from Moonhill in Yangshuo – image credited to topguilintravel l Rock climbing in Asia

A Must Do – wake up early to catch the sunrise, with a stunning view of the mountains covered in a sea of mist. Sure to leave you spellbound.

Stunning natural beauty of Yangshuo in China. Amazing rock climber's paradise. Photo credited to lycheetravel | Rock climbing in Asia
The stunning natural beauty of Yangshuo in China. Amazing rock climber’s paradise. Photo credited to lycheetravel | Rock climbing in Asia

13. White River, Near Beijing

Considered by many to be the birthplace of rock climbing in China, White River is located right outside of the Beijing suburbs. Consisting mainly of granite single-pitch sport routes, the crag is a large area offering mainly sport routes in the intermediate range. You can find the most detailed guide here.

14. Si Du, Near Beijing

Also located right outside of Beijing, Si Du is a relaxed climbing area on the tranquil Juma River. Offering mainly beginner and intermediate routes, Si Du is a popular area for amateur climbers. White River and Si Du could be great crag options if you’re looking to combine a climbing trip with a trip to check out China’s capital city of Beijing!

There are endless climbs in Asia-which area will you choose?
There are endless climbs in Asia-which area will you choose?

Many have asked, are there any rock climbing near me? In Singapore?

-SINGAPORE-

15. Dairy Farm Climbing Reserve/ Quarry in Singapore

Outdoor Nature Dairy farm Climbing at Singapore | Rock climbing near me
Outdoor Nature Dairy farm Climbing at Singapore | Rock climbing near me

There is a natural rock climbing wall in Singapore? Who would have thought?

But yes, especially shouting out to Singaporeans, you can check Dairy Farm at Bukit Timah Road area, the nearest situated mall is the Rail Mail. This place is popular for bikers, hikers alike, families with young ones given the natural abundant trails and rich forestry.

View of the forest below at one of the top anchors at Dairyfarm Singapore. The life of a female rock climber | Rock climbing near me
View of the forest below at one of the top anchors at Dairyfarm Singapore. The life of a female rock climber

Just take note to be careful to check your routes before you embark on a Dairy Farm climb, there is ongoing rock movements due to the climate here in Singapore ( rain and shine all year round), so loose rock is a common occurence.

Rock climbing pushes you physically and tests your endurance | Rock climbing in KL Malaysia | Rock climbing near me
Rock climbing in southeast asia | Rock climbing near me

-LAOS-

16. Thakhek, Laos

Though climbing in Laos has less than 20 years of history, the country has quite a bit to offer. The largest climbing area in Laos, Thakhek is located in the southern part of the country, not as frequent by travellers to Laos. One of the most incredible places to climb in southeast area, you can be guaranteed pristine seclusion away from the traffic, tourists and tour groups. The entire climbing area is deeper in away from the main road and just made up of incredible crags, lush forests, rivers, beautiful butterflies and the occasional climber around the corner.

Some of the best crags for climbers in the grade of 5c to 6a would be Swiss Oldies, Tree Canyon, World’s End and G-Spot. One of the best routes Cez and I have ever tried in our lived are here as it has a good mix between awesome jugs, balancy moves, cracks, roofs, tufas, good footholds and really fun bridging. Routes are long and trains endurance, so you’re almost guaranteed to need an 80-meter rope. You can check out the Green Climbers Home for crag information and accommodation in the area! We were at Thakhek in May and it was just the tail end of the spring season, before the monsoon season hits and climbing area plus Green Climbers Home close for the season and reopen in September or October.

17. Vang Vieng, Laos

Located just a 3-hour bus ride from Vientiane, the capital of Laos, Vang Vieng is a beautiful climbing area that used to be a partier’s paradise. However, nowadays, the party crowd has died off and what it currently is has become a miniature version of Korea town. Aside from the city area which Cez and I were not a big fan of, take a tuk-tuk out to the climbing spots with a picturesque crag with views of the Nam Song River.

There are quite a few climbing areas, but we went to Sleeping Wall for a day climb, which is located across a little river. The area offers about 200 routes between the 5a-8a (5.9-5.13) grades, so you’ll be sure to find something perfect for your abilities. You can hear the occasional screams from people across the river doing some ziplining. This climbing place was also Cez’s first time trying outdoor rock climbing and that is how he fell in love with it. Local outdoor adventure companies like Adam’s Climbing School offer options for day rock climbing courses, guided trips or transportation to the crag in the area if you’d like an expert local climbing guide to show you around the crag. Some of these guides we chatted with are so good that they can climb a 6b route barefooted or in slippers (I would strongly NOT encourage anyone else to consider that)

Laos offers beautiful landscapes and sprawling cliffs.
Laos offers beautiful landscapes and sprawling cliffs.

-JAPAN-

18. Mount Katsu, in Okinawa

Located in Katsuyama, on the isolated island of Okinawa, this is one of Japan’s best sport climbing areas. The crag offers a wide variety of climbing, from crimps to slopers to jugs, along with routes for both beginners and experts alike. The area has over 60 climbs, and you can find logistical information, such as how to reach the area and where the climbs are located, on Mountain Project. It’s quite the journey to make it all the way over to Mount Katsu, but you’ll be sure to have an adventure.

19. Ogawayama, Near Tokyo

You will find Ogawayama only about a 3-hour drive from the bustling metropolis of Tokyo, making it an easily accesible crag that is certainly worth the visit. Upon arriving you’ll find cliffs and boulders spread throughout a beautiful, tranquil valley. The easiest way to access is with a car, but once you’re there, you’ll find hundreds of beautiful granite routes, most of which are slab climbs, with some crack and even roof climbing as well. Aside from sport climbing, you’ll also find some of the best outdoor bouldering in Asia in Japan, and Ogawayama is a great place to go if you’re looking to get some bouldering in.

Japan's famous Mt. Fuji isn't the only place for climbing in Japan.
Japan’s famous Mt. Fuji isn’t the only place for climbing in Japan.

-AUSTRALIA-

20. Grampians, in Melbourne

If you’re looking to do some rock climbing in Melbourne, the Grampians is your best bet. Offering some of the best sandstone routes in the world, this climbing area is perfect for anyone with a visit to Melbourne in mind. With thousands of routes and boulders, here you can find some of the best outdoor bouldering as well as sport climbing. Visitors should be aware of recent climbing restrictions in the park, but not to fear, as there are still many high-quality routes that can still be climbed. Grampians National Park is located just northwest of Melbourne, on the southeast part of the continent.

Asia doesn't just have great sport climbing...check out the many bouldering options as well!
Asia doesn’t just have great sport climbing…check out the many bouldering options as well!

21. Blue Mountains, at Sydney

Just a short drive, less than 2 hours, west of Sydney you will find some of Australia’s best and most varied sport climbing. You should keep in mind that this area is better suited to intermediate and advanced climbers, as many of the beginner routes tend to be choosy and sketchy, but the more experienced climber will find themselves in a sandstone paradise. However, beginners can head over to Mt. Victoria for climbs that suit their level. The climbing style mainly consists of face climbing on crimps with a slight overhang, though you can find slab and steep overhangs as well.

Imagine climbing these seaside cliffs on the Australian coast.
Imagine climbing these seaside cliffs on the Australian coast.

—-

So satisfied with the list of 21 best climbing destinations in Asia Pacific?

list of 21 best climbing destinations in Asia Pacific

Have I missed out any new and upcoming spots to climb in Asia?

Top rock climbing destinations in Asia
Top rock climbing destinations in Asia

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6 Comments

  • Reply
    Alex @ Climbing Blogger
    March 2, 2019 at 11:02 pm

    Hi Lydia!

    I love your blog! My travel wishlist has just grown significantly in size after reading about all these beautiful climbing destinations. And thanks for dropping by on my blog by the way πŸ™‚ I’ll be sure to check in every now and then to see what you’re up to πŸ™‚ See you around!

    • Reply
      Lydia Yang
      March 4, 2019 at 11:11 am

      Hi Alex! Glad you enjoyed the posts and hope you are inspired to visit some of these places to climb. Yes, hope to see you around too!:D My next stop is Penang and Krabi!

  • Reply
    Alba
    March 17, 2019 at 10:27 am

    Hi there!!
    Thank you for sharing your experience with us! I am planning to go to Asia in August to climb, where do you think is better in that month? Not too hot, humid…
    Keep climbing!

    • Reply
      Lydia Yang
      March 18, 2019 at 12:14 am

      Hi Alba! so glad you are paying us a visit in august. One good news for you is the southeast asia has rather sunny weather all year round and tend to have some monsoon showers in certain regions. Depending on where exactly you wanto to climb at ( eg. Krabi/ Vietnam), I would be able to advise.

  • Reply
    TThomas
    March 25, 2019 at 5:11 pm

    Yangshuo remains my top to-do in my bucket list. I am glad that you featured it on your blog at the right time. My only concern, is the notorious The Moon Hill favourable all time of the year? I’d like to visit in August. Thank you.

    • Reply
      Lydia Yang
      March 25, 2019 at 6:32 pm

      Hi Thomas! Jul and Aug the warmest time of the year at 28 degrees:). Moonhill is windy and breezy most of the time, but just need to time the climbing such that you avoid the direct sunlight falling on you. Hope it helps! Excited for you!

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