Climb Europe
Climb Europe

Italian Alpine rock climbing

The Italian Alps offer a great range of climbing styles, in fantastic locations.  There is everything from world class bouldering at Mello, to bolted sport routes, trad routes, and long alpine routes.  The variety of rock type ranges from granite, gneiss, schist, and limestone, to marble and conglomerate.  The popular areas are shown on the map opposite and described below:

Mello Boulder GuidebookRock climbing and bouldering at Val di Mello

Val di Mello is the best place to go bouldering in Italy with its own annual festival, Mello Blocco, which is held every spring. These granite boulders are situated in lush alpine meadows and shaded woodlands and provide a good range of problems across all grades.  Find out more…

Map of the best rock climbing areas
in the Italian Alps

Map of the rock climbing areas in the Italian Alps Bouldering at Mello Rock climbing and sport climbing at Valsesia Rock climbing and sport climbing in Valtellina Rock climbing and sport climbing at Lake Como and Lecco Rock climbing and sport climbing in the Orco Valley Rock Climbing in the Aosta Valley

Val di Mello rock climbing and sport climbing guidebookVal di Mello is surrounded by huge granite walls that feature endless cracks, corners and grooves.  The granite rock is solid, featured and clean with the climbing ranging from single pitch sport routes to long multi-pitch mountain climbing up to 800m long, with everything in between and across all grades. Find out more…

Rock Climbing in Valtellina

The Valtellina, ValChiavenna and Engadine sport climbing guidebookValtellina and ValChiavenna are two of the largest valleys in the Italian Alps that host a huge variety of rock with different climbing opportunities and styles.  Generally the climbing here is within the valley floor or at low altitude. The vast majority of the routes are bolted though some of the longer multi-pitch routes (300m+ long) do require some trad gear.  Find out more…

ValChiavenna also offers excellent bouldering at places such as Cimaganda and Prestone.  These bouldering areas are situated in alpine meadows, and are very accessible from the road. Find out more…

To cover the wealth of climbing in the Val Masino, Valtellina and ValChiavenna areas, there are several different definitive guidebooks available.  Mello boulder covers the bouldering, whilst the Val di Mello Rock Climbing Guidebook covers the trad and sport routes.  The Valtellina, ValChiavenna and Engadine guidebook covers the sport routes and multi-pitch routes in the valleys at low altitude; whilst Solo Granite Volume 1 and Solo Granite Volume 2 covers the high altitude Alpine style routes.  All of these guidebooks are available to buy from our shop.

The Valle dell'Orco is the definitive rock climbing and sport climbing guidebook for the Orco ValleyRock Climbing in the Orco Valley

The Orco valley (Valle dell'Orco) is located in the Gran Paradiso National Park, which is situated to the north of Turin and west of Milan.  This valley is famous for its granite crack climbing, which is said to be the best in the Western European Alps, and is known locally as “Little Yosemite”. The climbing ranges from the sport climbing found in the lower valley to the multi-pitch Trad climbing on the epic big walls of Sergent, Caporal and the Torre di Aimonin, to the cliffs just below the Col de Nivolet.  The definitive guidebook for this area is called the Valle dell'Orco guidebook that is available to buy from our shop.

Lario Rock Pareti rock climbing guidebookRock Climbing at Lecco and Lake Como

The limestone crags that rise out of Lake Como near Lecco offer a great range of rock climbing. This area is huge with 100’s of crags and literally many 1000’s of routes. There is everything from single pitch sport routes with simple approaches to long multi-pitch routes up to 500m long that demand a mountaineering approach. However there are many bolted multi-pitch sports routes between 100m to 300m long. Find out more about rock climbing in Lecco and Lake Como.

The Valsesia Rock Climbing GuidebookRock Climbing at Valsesia

The Valsesia climbing area runs from the town of Borgosesia, along the valley passing Quarona and onto Alagna.  Here there over 40 different crags and over 400 routes across a wide range of grades from F4a to F8b+.  The style of climbing varies from super-technical or vertical walls to roofs and overhangs.  The vast majority of the routes are bolted single pitch routes, though there are some multi-pitch routes over 200m long.  Generally the climbing here is close to the valley floor with short approach times from the parking areas.  The definitive guidebook for this area is called the Valsesia Rock Climbing Guidebook that is available to buy from our shop.

Rock Climbing in the Aosta Valley

Aosta Valley rock climbing guidebookThe Aosta Valley (Valle D'Aosta) has hundreds of single pitch and multi-pitch rock routes on well bolted gneiss rock. These routes are spread across a good range of grades with many delicate face climbs that rtnage from 10m to over 350m long.  The Aosta Valley is situated in the North West corner of the Italian Alps it is on the opposite side of the Mont Blanc tunnel from Chamonix.  There is climbing throughout this valley from Courmayeur to Aosta and onto Point Saint Martin.

The best time to climb in the Aosta Valley is either side of mid-summer, as it is in the rain shadow of the French Alps around Chamonix.  When it is wet and cold in Chamonix, a quick drive through the Mont Blanc tunnel can often find dry and warm rock in the Aosta Valley.  The comprehensive rock climbing guidebook for the Aosta Valley is called Mani Nude 2 that is available to buy from our shop.

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Solo Granito Volume 1 rock climbing guidebook

Buy rock climbing, sport climbing and bouldering guidebooks for the Italian Alps from our shop.