Rock climbing is a type of extreme sports with some degree of danger. But it is really interesting stimulation when every step up and every move is dictated by nature and how you interact with it. It is clearly seen that this outdoor activity is popular all over the world but among the most well-known places to do it is Thailand.
Thanks to constant investment, this country is seeing the new appearance of climbing routes every year, which make it become a famous international climbing destination. Besides traditional natural rock climbing places, there are some interestingly new spots for climbers. Combining rock climbing with classic tours to discover many aspects of Thailand will never make you regret.
When to climb in Thailand?
Actually you can climb at any time of the year, but it is always good to know the typical features of each season in Thailand to make the suitable decision. Thailand is a tropical climate country, so it has three distinct seasons. From November to March is dry and warm season, from April to May is hottest season and from June to October is wettest one. The best time to go rock climbing in Thailand is in high season, from November to March.
It is also easier for climbers to find climbing partners to do the challenging routes in high season because experienced climbers should not go solo. And during low season, it may be hard to find companions unless you book a tour.
Top 5 Best Places for Rock Climbing in Thailand
- Chiang Mai:
Chiang Mai is a famous city for many delicious food, typical tropical weather and lots of exciting daily trips, from temples tours to elephant sanctuary discovery. More interestingly, Chiang Mai in the far North is also an ideal choice for visitors loving rock-climbing.
Two most well-known rock formations in Thailand are Crazy House Buttress and Chiang Dao. Between them, Crazy House is suitable for both experts and beginners. It is about 25 miles from the city center and there are around 150 routes for two kinds of climbers to choose. It is a popular climbing destination for tourists and locals. Besides the cliffs, visitors can explore many impressive caves in the area. Chiang Dao is less popular than Crazy House, but also is fantastic with 25 routes for climbers. It takes about 1.5 hours to transfer from Chiang Mai to Chiang Dao. Especially the Doi Luang Chiang Dao Mountain is the third-highest rock -climbing mountains in Thailand and requires climbers spend about one day or two on reaching its peak. But visitors will never regret to catch the breathtaking view from the top of 7,300 height.
If there is Chiang Mai in the north, Karbi is a perfect destination for climbers in the southern Thailand. Krabi is famous for the limestone cliffs protruding from the beautiful Andaman sea’s glassy surface. One of the most popular areas with spectacular geographical structures in Krabi is the Railay Beach with impressive rock formations, which wait to be conquered by climbers. It is true to say that Railay Beach is a good sport for climbing beginners and there are many climbing schools for any one loving this kind of outdoor activity. These schools offer a wide range of packages, from simple half-day to multiple day excursions.
- Koh Phi Phi:
Koh Phi Phi is always considered an attractive island complex for party-goers and divers, but rock climbing is an important part of this amazing six-island complex. The main formation that climbers choose to discover is the Tonsai Tower, which provides roughly 30 routes and extremely suit with beginners. The Tonsai Tower provides climbers spectacular views of the ocean, after reach the top of a route. Climbing started here in the 1980s, and became popular until the 1990s. Phi Phi is thus regarded as the birthplace of the extreme sports in Thailand and nowadays, it is one of the top destinations for climbers travelling Southeast Asia.
- Koh Tao:
Situated in the middle of the Gulf of Thailand, Koh Tao is made up of volcanic rock in the form of large granite boulders, which dot the landscape and make the impressive topography of the island. There are many climbing options on Koh Tao Island, from trails over mountain tops with panoramic views to seaside cliffs by coastal erosion.
- Khon Kaen:
Khon Kaen is not the most popular place to climb in Thailand, but there are plenty of sandstone boulders for loving-climbing visitors. There are two main bouldering areas: Hin Chang Si in Nam Pong National Park and Zoolander in Khon Kaen Zoo (Khao Suan Kwang Zoo). The rock is sandstone with grades ranging from V0 to V10, so it suits with all climbing levels and new routes constantly being set have attracted many groups of die-hard climbers recently. Besides bouldering, you can even sleep in the zoo to observe the life of animals there.