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!

Pareltje in Almere

Een prachtig mooi afgewerkte boulderhal opende afgelopen zaterdag de deuren: Boulderhal Impact bij Almere Parkwijk. En wij mochten dit aanschouwen, feest! De bar waar je binnen komt is stijlvol, het klimgedeelte biedt genoeg uitdaging. Niet zo groot als een Grip in Nijmegen (of een Campus uit Den Haag die ik nog moet bezoeken sinds hun opening 6 mei!). Maar genoeg te klimmen, creatieve routes waar goed op te puzzelen is. Een aanrader!

En zo kleurrijk! Met een pad om terug te lopen van heuse top-out routes. Achterin een grote trainingsruimte en de basic kleedkamers bovenaan zonder douches helaas. Maar goed geboulderd!

Bouldering topper Helsinki

Arriving at our final destination: Helsinki. A great bouldering destination with multiple bouldering and climbing gyms. Not to mention the rocks all over the city with bouldering potential. Topper!

Either a short 2 hour boat trip from Helsinki. Or spending double the time on a luxureous cruise ship. We had a blast at the ship with live music, nice view and entertainment. From the harbour it was an hour walk to our accomodation, sight seeing the city on our way. Ended up being enough for one day and took a quiet evening. Bouldering we could only climb at one place, while having so many options in Helsinki. So we climbed at BoulderKeskus Pasila and visited two more gyms.

Boulderkeskus Pasila was not the best choice: quite small especially as half the walls were broken down for renovation. Explains why there were not any 4’s and we warmed up with 5’s. The level of the routes were clearly labeled at the start holds. The route continued with holds of the same colour. We had an okay session there and touched some 6’s and 7’s. Atmosphere is fine and nice climbers! 

Climbing gym Kiipeilyarena was awesome by the looks of it. High climbing area woth artificial rocks and a nice bouldering area, with nice Walltopia walls. Wish we could have tried it out!

Then Boulderkeskus Isatis was the best we have seen so far. Great overhang wall, huge area and interesting looking routes. Plus, a system with an app where you can track the climbed routes. Wantes to give it a try as well! Remarkebly there was no music on while we were there. Nice climbers but got a serious vibe.

We will be back, Helsinki!

Ronimis: bouldering in Tallinn

After Lithuania and Latvia we arrive in Estonia by a smooth bus ride. First day here we explored the nicely decorated city center. We cannot wait too long to boulder, so the next day we walk up to RonimisMinisteerum. 

The bouldering gym in Tallinn is really nice! Creative routes where the level (V system) is marked by labels like in Riga. Works fine. A little bit strange are the falling down mats. There is a gap between the mat on the floor and the wall, which can be filled with flexible mats. When starting a route you have to make sure the mat is filled and move around mat blocks. Mat in place and off we go!

The gym also offers a climbing rope, a high slack line and enough training options. Good fun, would like to come back!

Next day was supposed to be a “rest” day but invited to a climbing parc we found ourselves climbing in the sun between the trees. So much fun! In the beautiful area of Nomme we enjoyed all day! From walking in the forest to watching the Champion League match. Only one day left in Tallinn!

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