Rock & ice climbing in Armenia

Armenian Highland is consisted of dozens limestone formations attracting adventurous spirits for sport, traditional & mixed climbing, and bouldering. Almost all climbing destinations are easily accessible by car and within a couple hours from the capital, Yerevan. Despite its small climbing community, rock climbing is proactively developing in Armenia. In recent years, new routes has been identified and marked. In addittion to outdoor climbing, the 'community' operates two indoor climbing walls and a bouldering facility in Yerevan.

The most stunning formation is Armenia are the hexagonal basalt columns, however, climbing those fragile columns including Arpa & Garni Gorges was banned since May 2013. Since 2009 an attempt was underway to reduce the impact of climbing on basalt columns by avoiding the use of bolts, however, after realizing that some fail to respect the guideline it resulted in total 'ban' of climbing on basalt columns. 

Where to climb?

Noravank Canyon

Noravank Canyon is the most developed area for sport & traditional climbing in Armenia with steep limestone canyon walls. 3 Trad & 9 sport climbing routes categorized 5.6 to 5.11a/b are available.

Lush vegetation combined with an amazing view of the surrounding assure a pleasant environment to climb all day long. Be aware of hazards such as scorpions and vipers, along with the load of vehicles traveling up and down the canyon.

Noravank Canyon is located 100km SE from Yerevan, via Yerevan-Goris road. You might take Yerevan-Yeghegnadzor public transportation or hitch-hike to the cross-road of Noravank around 1 km after Areni town.

Altitude: 1161 meters | Geo-location: 39.71, 45.207

Hell's Canyon

Hell's Canyon is the most beloved complex for sport & traditional climbing in Armenia. This is a limestone sport climbing crag with routes from 5.8 to 5.12 and loads of potential for development (17 sport routes).

It is located 80km SE from Yerevan, via Yerevan-Goris road. You might take Yerevan-Yeghegnadzor public transportation or hitch-hike to the Canyon. You will have to take off the road for about 2 km. Do not forget to take drinking water with you.

Altitude: 1061 meters | Geo-location: 39.813, 45.013

Hrazdan Gorge

Hrazdan Gorge crosses deep in the heart of the Capital Yerevan, and is one of the most popular rock climbing options due to its accessibility.

1 Trad & 6 sport climbing routes categorized 5.7 to 5.10d are available in Hrazdan Gorge, next to Davtashen Bridge.

Altitude: 1061 meters | Geo-location: 40.209, 44.489

Bjni Crag

Bjni crag is another favorite destination for mountain climbing. 1 climbing route for teenage climbers categorized as 4a and 2 others for adults (4a-6a & 5b-5c) are available on the cliffs next to Hrazdan River.

Bjni is around 37 km from Yerevan; there is a trail to approach the climbing site with suitable space for camping and also parking the vehicles.

Garni Gorge

Climbing is restricted in Garni Gorge; all anchors in the canyon have been removed. This is due to the ban on rock climbing on basalt columns in Armenia. Garni Gorge used to have routes with difficulty levels of 5.8 to 5.12 (9 Trad routes).

Garni Gorge is around 30 km (48 minutes) from Yerevan via H3 road.

Altitude: 1354 meters | Geo-location: 40.11, 44.728

Let's also note...

There are several other climbing destinations all around Armenia, such as but not limited to Arzni crag and cliffs on the top of Mount Khustup in Syunik Province.
Moreover, ice climbing has also been developing; Trchkan waterfall on Chichkhan River and a newly developed route in Jermuk Town are those two main destinations for ice climbing in Armenia.
Additional information about the above will be shared shortly.

Indoor facilities

Boulder Town Yerevan

Boulder town is the first climbing gym in Armenia. Whether you are already a climber looking for a place to train or you are a beginner interested in learning practical and theoretical skills, Boulder Town is where you got to visit!
You can organize your training on Tuesday-Sunday, from 4 pm to 10 pm!
The facility is "off" for a while. Get back for more updates!

Grand Sport Complex

This is an 'amateur' climbing wall, however, an amazing environment for training. 
The operational hours are:
Tuesday & Thursday: 14:30-15:30
Saturday: 14:00-15:30
You will have to train under the supervision/support of the trainer provided by Grand Sport Complex.

Yerevan State University

A professional training facility established in Yerevan State University. The facility operates on a daily basis, yet only for the students of the University, however, shortly they might announce public hours for non-students.
Get back for more updates!

Leave No Trace

  • Plan ahead & be prepared
  • Dispose the waste properly
  • Leave what you find
  • Minimize campfire impacts
  • Respect the wildlife
  • Be considerate of other visitors

Roads conditions

It is winter time! Check out road conditions before heading to the road! Beware of the snow & ice layer!

Vanadzor - Alaverdi section of the M6 Interstate highway stretching from Yerevan to Georgian border is temporarily closed. You can use Vanadzor-Stepanavan-Odzun-Alaverdi bypassing road.

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