Rock Climbing in Thailand - Railay, Ao Nang and Beyond
Rock Climbing has become so popular in Southern Thailand that the most popular spots are seeing near runaway inflation. Room prices exceed those of Bangkok and even bottled water is selling at a premium. Some climbers are giving up access to the local nightlife by getting closer to the climbing areas and paying lower prices.
One popular guide, Khun Wee said "The best developed climbing area in Thailand is still Railay which is a Peninsular close to Krabi town in Southern Thailand. During high season Railay is climbers 'United Nations'."
New destinations across Thailand are continually being developed. More routes are being bolted and permissions for bolting on other faces have been given. Limestone karsts sprouting up all over Thailand from north to south allow climbs of varying difficulties. Besides Railay, check out:
.. gives you the choice of climbing on plastic
or real rock. 'The Peak Rock-Climbing Plaza' has the largest artificial
climbing wall in Thailand. It's located on Changklan Road near the night
bazaar, next door to Pizza Hut and Burger King in Chiangin Plaza. They
operate from 1:00 pm to midnight.
But the natural wall, dubbed Crazy Horse Buttress, is about 40km from Chiang Mai and is called Crazy Horse Buttress Wall. This is how Josh Morris describes the site.
"Crazy Horse Buttress is a stunning limestone outcrop located just 40
kilometers from Chiang Mai, Thailand. The climbing is highly varied (5 - 8a)
and offers a little something for everyone.
Many of the more that 80 routes offer a mixture of fingery, technical as well as powerful, pocketed cruxes on slab, vertical and steep overhanging faces. There are 13 multi-pitch routes offering great exposure over the entire crag and providing fantastic views of the Sankhamphaeng farming valley."
Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures has a detailed guidebook on climbing in the area. They offer guide services, equipment rentals and sales and can arrange transport to the crag from the city.
A limestone karst near Chiang Rai city was being developed. (Not sure if the effort has continued.)
Mae Hong Son
A 15 minute flight or an all-day drive from Chiang Mai and very near the Burmese border. Apparently the area has one crag with one route on it.
is an area just over an hour south of Bangkok. The crag was reported to have more than 20 routes many years ago. Some of the routes are called "classics".
One great resource for rock climbers interested in Thailand is Simon Foley's great site.
He suggests destinations and routes and gives directions to most. Simon rates climbing schools and comments on the state of climbing in Thailand today. His tips should make your climbing holiday in Thailand more enjoyable. This resource can be found at Climbing in Thailand
Climbing Schools in Thailand
Wee's Rock Climbing School
Ko Phi Phi
Phi Phi Climbers
Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures