Spain Guide

 

Climbing in Eastern Spain

Rock climbing in eastern Spain is a sport which attracts expert climbers from around the world along with families seeking an unusual day out to entertain the kids. There's something for everyone in the mountains, sea cliffs, caves and crags which abound in the east of the Iberian Peninsula.

From the eastern Pyrenees in the north of the country down to the dramatic mountain ranges which dominate the hinterland of the Costa Blanca, there are countless climbs to ease in the novice and challenge the most experienced enthusiast.

The Pyrenean mountain range on the Spanish side offers an ideal landscape for climbing, caving and canyoning. The area is blessed with numerous dramatic peaks (most of which are more than 3,000 metres) and is often chosen for international climbing competitions. There's some extensive and excellent sports climbing to be found in the Rodella Valley, to the east of Huesca. The area boasts a wealth of big wall climbing, numerous canyons and plentiful pools and lakes to cool off in (don't be deterred by the common sight of large vultures circling overhead!).

 

A short distance inland from Barcelona at Montserrat, you'll find some of the most extraordinary rock formations in Eastern Spain. The conglomerate mountain rock (formed from a collection of sediments cemented together with various minerals) resembles something from outer space and was the inspiration for much of the awe inspiring architecture of Antonio Gaudi. Combine a climbing trip to Montserrat with a sightseeing tour of the beautiful city of Barcelona which is awash with Gaudi's architectural wonders. There are more than one hundred towers at Montserrat (many of them bolted all the way to the top), 65 crags and more than 350 climbing routes. Professional guides offer tough sports climbing trips as well as easier routes for children as young as seven or eight.

Further south down the eastern section of Spain, there's some excellent climbing country in the mountains which loom behind the coastal city of Valencia. And south from Valencia, the neighbouring province of Alicante offers some of the best climbing territory in the whole of Spain.

The Alicante region is a true treasure trove of fascinating climbs from the famous Peñon d'Ifach (rock of the north) at Calpe and the sea cliffs at Moraira to the challenging buttresses, towers and peaks of the Sierra Aitana and Sierra Bernia mountain ranges. Early spring and autumn are the most popular times to visit as summers in the province are generally sizzling and mid winter can bring icy winds, sudden deluges of heavy rain and occasional snow.

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