Rainy Copenhagen

A nice weekend in Copenhagen, we arrived Friday evening and had a nice Danish burger. Next morning we headed to the bouldering gym. Supposedly easy to get to by public transport, metro and bus. Too bad the bus stop was out of order and we warmed up with a brisk 30 min walk.

The gym is quite big, offering changing rooms with showers. There are all kind of walls, and creative routes. And holds I have not seen before, so had a good time. The levels are by colour, however, there was no clear sign of the order/level of the colours. So I started by sight, which also works fine. And found the right order.

There is a nice bar, the atmosphere was friendly yet very focused during my visit. Climbers were concentrated on their next route. A good bouldering gym!

The Wall Athens

Climbing at Athens was a challenge: finding a wall that was opened, and then the routes were quite hard. Or we did understand the system correctly..

Athens has a lot of climbing places: RockWay looked the best from the pictures (on holiday), then Rockway (on holiday), OKOA at the stadium, a climbing center and not clear if it was open. And climbing center The Wall, a bit further from the city but next to station Pallini. And a really nice climbing and bouldering place.

There are routes starting with 4/5a with white labels. A ‘v’ shape at the start with two labels, then every hold has a coloured label and a ‘v’ shape again at the end. The holds can be in any colour, so you really have to look ahead not to miss a hold. The label are either one colour or a colour with a stripe of another colour. We both took them to be white, but distinguishable because they are close to eachother. Which made some really hard routes.

The walls are diverse: overhang to roof and some parts artificial walls. Good fun! And we traversed quite a part of the top roping walls.

Nice atmosphere and friendly staff. I would not mind returning here.

Rock Albania

Albania is a beautifuk country, nice scenary and lovely weather in August. So much so that the boulder gym Rock Tirana was closed in this summer time.

And that is the only climbing place in all of ex-communistic country. So we enjoyed the nice food, went to a bunker museum and enjoyed ourselves on the ‘Pyramid of Tirana’.

Second day we travelled to the beach town Durres, 20 km from Tirana. One afternoon was enough time to visit this city.

Would be nice to return here when the boulder place is open!

No climbing Macedonia

Arriving with 40 degrees celsius outside (hot hot). The first thing to pop up to do would not be indoor climbing. But we were on a mission in Skopje!

The city has two climbig places: BoulderBar (love the name) and slimbing centre Karposh with walls outdoor. First up was BoulderBar, a small gym close to the city. Because of the temperatures, it would not be open before 5 p.m. well, even at 6 p.m. it was still closed. I would recommend to visit in autumn.

Karposh is close to a shopping mall and next to a cosy part of the Vardar river. The walls are outside so we could peak around the fence even though they were not open either. Looks very promising, would have been great to boulder there!

Day 8 & 9: Sarajevo

Visiting the capital of Bosnia & Herzegovina: we made it! The city was quiet but we enjoyed ourselves all afternoon, as the boulder gym would open in the evening. After the bad luck with bouldering: in Zagreb the gym was preparing for next season, Split was closed for competition, Mostar was closed for summer break, this was the first time we could climb on day 8 of our bouldering holiday!

And it was good. The owner Edin showed us around and pointed the routes (lines) at us which we had to climb. The gym is not that big, but so compact with fun creative routes. We had a blast! Traversing, climbing all around and a nice cooling down. He also told us that we had to climb outside, in the rocky nature of Bosnia.

Nice atmosphere in the gym and enough to climb in this cosy boulder gym in the center of Sarajevo!

Day 7:Mostar

On our way from Split to Sarajevo we made a stop in Mostar. A touristic village with an ancient nice bridge, which everyone is visiting. Our hotel was in another neighbourhood, accidently next to a small bouldering place! The University gym was also closed for the Summer, but we felt at the right place.

Next up was a ride to Sarajevo, where we made sure the boulder gym would be open!

Day 5&6: Croatian Coast

From the natural parc of Plitvice we continued to the famous beaches! Arriving in Trogir we enjoyed the beach, sun, boat, and bouldering in the sea :)

Pretty hard and slippery and salty water, but he did it!

Next we explored Split, artsy and stinky city. Although some bouldering potential. We hit some rocks in the city, and there is a bouldering gym: Marulianus. Unfortunately they were preparing for a competition in a few days and we could not climb there either.

Hidden in the basement of the stadium houses this cosy gym. The walls look good, bit small and staff was not that friendly. Time to move on!

Day 1 & 2: Zagreb

We are on a tour to Croatia and Bosnia Herzegovina. Day 1 we land on Zagreb and cannot resists to visit the boulder gym Fothia Velesajam. The accomodation for the night was right around the corner. At check in the room turned out to be in a sporting gym, which we can use! Confident enough we announced to the hotel that we are heading to the bouldering gym. There came the first warning; The boulder gym might be closed down.

On further inspection the boulder gym was indeed on Summer break. Makes sense, with 30+ degrees outside. The owners were busy though: cleaning all the holds and refreshing the routes.

It looks very promising, and the staff is very friendly! Inviting us back once they open again in August. Would love to take that offer :)

Holds are getting ready:

And they have a seperate ‘kids area’ in the back, about as big as the boulder gym in Riga.

Luckily we stayed inside a fitness gym, so we did some training instead of a bouldering session. Pumped up we got in our air conditioned room.

The next day we went to the Technical museum of Zagreb: a very nice visit! With fire department stuff, airplanes and Nikola Tesla on display. Great! After which we continued our trip to the Plitvice Lakes. Leaving exploring the city center and bouldering at Fothia for another visit.

Plezant Blok

Good fun at Boulder Gym ‘Klimzaal Blok’ in Antwerp. Exciting walls, from smaller to larger height, from pillar to grapefruit shaped walls. And the route setters know how the use the lay-out: some creative and nice routes! Would love to come back!

The goal of the Bouldertour 2017 is to boulder in all European capitals (well for practical reasons ‘only’ the first half, alphabetically by country name in Dutch) This also includes Belgium, however, we could not find any boulder gyms there! Luckily Antwerp has enough to offer for an enthousiastic climber, and we could not help but find out how the gyms are there!

The boulder gym is in a small village ‘Hoboken’ in the city. Cosy and green, while hosting a bike contest and being 30 degrees outside: we enjoyed the surroudings.

The gym is quite big, with a kids area, small bar, changing rooms plus showers inside a container, a slack line and a nice bouldering area. All in all it had an alternative vibe: good fun! Only down side is that we are so eager to climb the routes that we do not check how to get back on the ground after topping the route. Not that many down-climbing options and the higher routes results in a higher than comfortable fall. 

We had a good bouldering session!

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