Boasting three major rock climbing regions, each of which is defined by a different type of geology, Switzerland is not only renowned for its skiing and mountaineering, but for its excellent rock climbing terrains as well.
From the Jura Mountains to both the eastern and western region of the Alps, rock climbers of every skill level are sure to enjoy incredible single and multi-pitch trad and sport routes. There’s also an abundance of bouldering and alpine climbing to be done in this mountainous paradise.
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Flying into Switzerland, the rocky and mountainous terrain will be the first thing that catches your eye from the airplane. Whether you are arriving in Zermatt, Bern or Geneva, there are plenty of opportunities to get out of the cities and on to the rocks.
North of Bern, along the border with France and Germany are the Jura Mountains. Here there is also excellent climbing on some fantastic limestone towers, such as the Falkenstein. Farther south, what feels like a world away from Bern, are the much less traveled, but no less brilliant southern Swiss Alps. Here you’ll find Ticino, which offers some excellent advanced multi-pitch climbs as well as plenty of opportunities to cross over into Italy.
However, the western Swiss Alps, around Zurich and Geneva, as well as the eastern Swiss Alps, farther into the center of the country, is where much of the most famous rock climbing abounds.
Eiger, Jungfrau and Monch, all of which are near Interlocken, offer many great climbing opportunities in the former. Meanwhile, in the latter, Andermatt, Grimsel, Susten and Nufenen, are often considered the heart of the Alps and have the single and multi-pitch sport and trad routes to keep up with that reputation.
During the spring, summer and autumn the weather is fairly mild in Switzerland. In the summer, temperatures are around 20ºC to 25ºC. They tend to be cooler in the spring and autumn, getting down to about 10ºC. Throughout the year there is a fair amount of rain, but also plenty of sunny and clear days to enjoy.
This depends on how much time you have. Most rock climbing expeditions only take one or two days. Many guides offer longer options as well. Overall, a week or two in Switzerland would be adequate to sample some of the many rock climbing spots.
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