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Four of a kind: Climbing hotspots

From 300ft walls that take days to climb to miles of little boulders, here are four unique places to scale. By Caro Kyllmann

 

1. Traditional and sport climbing
Yosemite Valley, USA
It’s common to find climbers high up Yosemite’s 300ft-plus rock faces, spending the night on portaledges between pitches. Yosemite has something to offer to beginners and advanced climbers alike — from one-pitch sport routes, to 30-pitch traditional climbs. The diversity makes it well suited for groups of varying experience. travelyosemite.com

2. Bouldering
Fontainebleau, France
About 30 miles south of Paris lies the magical forest of Fontainebleau. Countless sandstone boulders of all shapes and grades litter the forest’s grounds, providing climbers with plenty of challenges to suit their particular style and level. Relaxing around a bonfire with a bottle of local wine is the perfect way to celebrate a long, hard day of climbing. bleau.info

3. Sport climbing and deep-water soloing
Krabi Province, Thailand
The beaches and small islands of Krabi Province, in southern Thailand, offer tall limestone cliffs, deep blue waters and long days by the seaside. Many single and multi-pitch routes start right off the beach, and those who like to take a dip can go deep-water soloing (climbing that relies on water below to provide safety) on one of the many islands scattered off the shores of the Railay and Ton Sai Beaches. railay.com

4. Big-wall climbing and mountaineering
Torres del Paine, Chile
This national park, in the south of Chilean Patagonia, has a stark, astounding beauty, with needle-like peaks on the Cordillera Paine piercing the sky. Climbers will have to wait for good weather to attempt to summit, as the ancient glaciers, foreboding mountains and haunting winds can be unforgiving. It’s worth it, though, as the tops of the high granite walls provide some of the best views around Patagonia. Best for experienced climbers. torresdelpaine.com

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