Our guides have climbed here for years and they know every crag like the back of their hand. They can accompany you to the right crag that suits you at the right moment. A piece of world climbing history was written here! The limestone rock is beautiful and particular, drop formations, holes, tufas, always very technical.
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On our final day in Siurana last spring , we met some Italians at the crag and ended up climbing next to them until the sun dipped behind the Spanish foothills.
As we were walking out together, I started asking them about places to climb in Italy, as I assumed there were epic crags there but the only thing I really knew about were the Dolomites. The photos looked rad and some further research showed the area to be stacked with climbing. One option was to connect in Milan to Kalymnos, but that was a little out of our price range, and it quickly became apparent that Finale was an easy 2 hour drive south of Milan.
After checking out a couple videos and blog posts, we settled on climbing on the Italian Riviera, and started prepping for the trip. With over routes, it was a little overwhelming for a two week trip, and I wanted to make sure we knew what the best sectors would be for us so we could hit the ground running.
One thing that immediately became apparent from watching videos and looking at pictures of the climbing was that the bolts appeared to be much closer together than they had been in Siurana. I knew Finale was an older area, but it looked like when rebolting work was done, things had been made more friendly. This did in fact turn out to be the case, and was certainly appreciated, as flying across an ocean for a two week trip, we were looking to keep the fun factor high.
There are two airports for Milan, we flew into Linate, which is in the city, small and easy to navigate. After grabbing some coffee and food in the heart of the old town, we hit the road south for Finale through pouring rain as night descended.
It had been a cold and wet winter and spring in Europe, and it seemed to welcome us in similar fashion. As we got closer to the coast, the landscape become more mountainous, with the highway passing through numerous tunnels.
Getting off the interstate, we found ourselves on a quiet and windy road heading down through a sleepy valley. Soon, an illuminated castle appeared on a ridge to our right, shortly followed by another one further down the valley, he town coming into view shortly after. It felt like a magical welcome to this hidden valley filled with climbing and castles. We met up with our Airbnb host and got settled in for what turned out to be an incredible two weeks in Italy. The people.
Finalborgo was a magical little town, and the folks we encountered were friendly, warm and welcoming, and we immediately felt a connection to the place. Our apartment was a two minute walk away from the 11th century walled town where you could get coffee in the morning, pick up some pizza and focaccia for lunch, or grab some last minute gear at one of the seven climbing shops.
Then there was the sweet couple that runs Sbuccia , where we grabbed coffee most mornings, and the always gregarious owner of Burgum Finarii, a great spot for a casual meal, or more coffee! Plus, there were no other Americans around, which was really nice from a cultural standpoint. The town. Being right outside the old town was great, and made more sense than being down on the ocean plus it was only a 15 minute walk from our apartment.
Parking was easy, and the crags were only a minute drive. Finale is a popular mountain biking destination and we were surrounded by mountain athletes. School groups were common during the week, visiting the archaeology museum and taking in the sites. It all felt super safe and made the vacation aspect very simple. On rest days we rarely felt the need to venture beyond Finale, as there was so much to explore right out our front door.
Narrow streets, old, tall buildings, polished cobbles, castles on every hillside, old terraces with olive trees, ancient Roman roads. History was everywhere, and you could start walking in any direction and find yourself at an old castle or church or other significant site. The food. No surprises here, but wow! I tried to only sample local fare, and it was all incredible.
Lasagna with potatoes and pesto, swordfish carpaccio, raviolis with artichoke, more swordfish, the best pizza ever, with gorgonzola! Food is such an important part of Italian culture and it was a treat to be able to fully enjoy our meals. We cooked at our apartment a couple nights, but it seemed like it was worth the extra cost to sample as much of the local eateries as we could.
The climbing. Some of it sounded like it would be similar to Siurana, as the place is known for pockets and more technical climbing. What we found was an incredible variety of styles. Techy slabs, pocketed vertical routes, overhanging tufas, it had it all and most of the time you could find several different styles at the same crag.
And I got to climb on real tufas for the first time, which was a blast, comparable for me to the first time I visited Indian Creek and climbed a real splitter. On one particularly excellent route, I hand jammed between two tufas, knee barred a little higher and then shoulder scummed between two larger formations.
Such cool 3D movement! All the crags were great hangs, the bolts were generally comfortably close together, most were modern glue-ins, and the rock was bomber. Plus at some cliffs you could look over your shoulder and gaze out over the Med or the hillsides and valleys stacked with more climbing.
What a place. Looking out over the Mediterranean at sunset. Not a bad view from the crag. And for those who want to crank harder, there appeared to be plenty to choose from, especially if you factor in the area of OltreFinale , a short 30 minute drive away.
We were hoping to climb there, but most of the good looking tufa crags were seeping from the wet spring, so we stayed in Finale proper. Finale was the complete package and ticked all the boxes for a great climbing vacation. The people, the place, the food and the climbing were all top notch. The locals told us the weather was cooler than average, but with a variety of aspects, it was easy to pick a cliff that would be warm on any given day.
Stay tuned for part two, regarding logistics for those interested in planning a trip to the area. We learned of this place through the MTB world, but then got really psyched when we found out there was good climbing as well.
Any insight into how baby friendly these crags are? Sorry I missed this somehow, hopefully you had a good trip and discovered that there are plenty of baby friendly crags! Hayden Carpenter and Tom Bohanon recently repeated an obscure ice climb on the south side of Mt Sopris. What they found was seven pitches of ice in a remote setting that makes for one […].
Looking down on Finalborgo, with the Med in the distance. Search the Site. Trip Reports. Ten Sleep Vibes. Back in the Trad. Locals Corner. Route of the Month.
Climbing in Finale Ligure
Finale Ligure, a lesser known part of the Italian Riviera, is a picturesque town situated on the northern coast of Italy. Add to this the fact that there are upwards of 3, bolted climbing routes, and you can understand why Finale was considered a sport climbing Mecca in the 80s and 90s. But in recent years, Finale has become more popular with mountain bikers and beach lovers and less so with climbers. We decided to take a trip to Finale Ligure to sample the rock, and we were not disappointed!
Climbing in Finale Ligure, Italian Riviera
On our final day in Siurana last spring , we met some Italians at the crag and ended up climbing next to them until the sun dipped behind the Spanish foothills. As we were walking out together, I started asking them about places to climb in Italy, as I assumed there were epic crags there but the only thing I really knew about were the Dolomites. The photos looked rad and some further research showed the area to be stacked with climbing. One option was to connect in Milan to Kalymnos, but that was a little out of our price range, and it quickly became apparent that Finale was an easy 2 hour drive south of Milan.
Milano via Longhi, 10, tel. All the descriptions in this guide have been based on information available at the time, but this should always be evaluated for yourself or by a qualified person before undertaking any climb. GPS indications of all the approaches to the crags can be downloaded from www. The Finale area is magical and inimitable: wild, harsh and with an exceptional landscape. These white limestone rocks that emerge from the luxuriant and deep green vegetation are unique for the whole western region of Liguria. The Finale area is a place to be explored that offers even today after 30 years of climbing and trekking, surprising views for climbers, trekkers and bikers… and for anyone who feels like walking around these valleys. For these reasons the Finale area is frequented by lovers of nature and outdoor sports from all over Europe.
A Girl in the Wilderness
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