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Elevation: 33 ft 10 m
GPS: 36.9526, 26.979
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Description Suggest change

Only the last person in your group should lower off the permanent carabiners to clean the route. Please top rope and lower off your own quickdraws after leading. The majority of routes in Kalymnos have a steel lowering carabiner for quick and easy cleaning however at popular crags but they can quickly become worn and sharp from people top roping directly off the fixed gear. 

Updated May 2024

Kalymnos may be one of the greatest sport climbing areas in the world. With over 4,200 routes in the 2023 guide being mostly accessible with a short hike and/or scooter and great amenities you'll wonder why you've ever climbed anywhere else. Many of the routes feature tufas and are steep, but there is also an array of pockets, thin vertical climbing and LOTS of moderates on the lower angle grey limestone. There is something for everybody with grades from 5a to 9a (5.7 to 5.14d). With some exceptions, the bolting is generally close together and safe, with particular attention paid to the first three to avoid deck potential. The atmosphere is quite different here than other locales, the climbers tend to be a little older and tend to travel as couples as opposed to a place like Thailand.

For all the information you need to get to Kalymnos and have a great time, see the ClimbKalymnos.com FAQ.

Grades: Kalymnos had a reputation for 'vacation grades' for the most part although the recent guides did a nearly wholesale downgrade. Because of this, many of the grades painted on the rock will be higher than that of the guide. You'll note a substantial increase in difficulty on humid days or when the rock seeps a little, so be weary of your desire to downgrade any further, you may have just had good weather. As of the 2023 guidebook, here is the grade breakdown:

Up to 5.9: 882 routes
10a - 10d: 1485 routes
11a - 12a: 971 routes
12b and up: 878 routes

Getting There Suggest change

Updated May 2024

Option 1: The best way to get to Kalymnos is to fly to Kos (airport code KGS), taxi to the Mastihari port (10 minutes, 20 euros cash), then take a ferry (30-60 minutes, 8-10 euros per person, credit cards accepted) to Kalymnos. Occasionally, high winds cancel the ferry between Mastihari to Kalymnos. The ferry schedule can be accessed on ClimbKalymnos.com

Slow ferry: anemferries.gr

Fast ferry: anekalymnou.gr

Another fast ferry: lafasi.gr 

Option 2: The next best option is to fly to Athens, then fly directly to Kalymnos (1 hour flight, airport code JKL). Flights operate a 3 - 5 times a week, depending on the season, and can be cancelled due to high winds.

Option 3: You can also ferry from Piraeus, the main port in Athens to Kalymnos. This ferry takes 10-14 hours and runs year-round and can take cars. 

Once you arrive in Kalymnos, you'll be in Pothia. Grab one of the many taxis waiting and pay about 20 euros to get to Massouri.

There is usually one late ferry to accommodate the last flight into Kos from Athens. If for whatever reason you miss it, there are plenty of hotels to grab in Mastahari that are walking distance from the ferry.

Creative options:

Take ferries between islands all the way from Athens. This will be more expensive and take a long time but you may enjoy several of the islands on the way in. Santorini or Crete would be well worth a stay.

You can also fly to Istanbul for some tourism then fly to Bodrum Turkey and take the ferry over to Kos (Kalymnos is much closer to Turkey than to mainland Greece).

Food Beta

Suggest change

Updated May 2024

RESTAURAUNTS:

There's lot of options in Massouri, including vegan and vegetarian options. Most restaurants during the winter starting mid-November and start re-opening in late March/April.

WATER:
The tap water comes from ground wells and is salty so don't drink it. Fill up your water bottles for free at the various TEMAK stations. They are white rectangles with a red roof. There's on in the middle of Massouri and another one at the north end of town before the switchbacks back towards Pothia. 

GROCERIES:
There are various mini markets scattered throughout Massouri. There is a big supermarket (closed on Sundays) in Panormos (heading back to Pothia on the right side) called AB. https://maps.app.goo.gl/zuj6RmMr9sUsTHtE6.

There's a lot of bakeries in Pothia for fresh bread and pastries. 

Season

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Updated May 2024

Peak season is Fall (specifically October), followed by Spring (April and May). The tufas can be seeping in February and March. 

Climbing in the winter is also great because there are lots of options for sunny crags. However there are a few things to consider.
1. Lots of accommodations and restaurants in Massouri start closing around mid November and re-open late March/early April. The main grocery store (AB) is open year-round and some accommodations and restaurants remain open. 

2. Ferries run between Kos and Kalymnos run less frequently and there are less flights to Kos.

3. It rains more slightly more December and January.

Climbing in the summer (July/August) is possible if you start early at 6am, bring lots of water, and hope for a breeze. 

Guidebook

Suggest change

Updated May 2024

The Kalymnos Rock Climbing Guidebook by Aris Theodoropoulos]] climbkalymnos.com/guidebook/ is THE book to have for Kalymnos beta. The 2023 update includes over 4,200 routes. A portion of proceeds from the guidebook go towards route maintenance and new route development.

The cover of the book tends to get beat up in backpacks so we always keep it in a ziplock or grocery bag. 

Gear Beta

Suggest change

2/3 of all accidents in Kalymnos involve lowering a climber off the end of the rope without a knot. Always ensure you have a knot at the end of your rope. Kalymnos has long rope stretching pitches, even with an 80m rope you'll feel like you need an oxygen mask to reach the high elevation of some anchors. 

Updated May 2024

Rope

60m rope: This will give you access to many routes but you will be limited. 

70m rope: This is highly recommended and gains you access to 80%-90% of routes. Many routes are rope stretchers even for a 70 and you may have to down climb from the first bolt occasionally. 

80m rope: This will give you access to 99% of routes in Kalymnos and is the best rope length to bring. 

100m rope: Telendos is now boasting routes requiring ropes of this length, and some on Kalymnos. Many big extensions will be easier with this.

Quickdraws

Routes are mostly closely bolted here. Rule of thumb is one quickdraw for every 2 meters. The guidebook recommends:

20m route: 10-12 draws
30m route: 15-17 draws
40m route: 20-22 draws

16 draws would be a minimum for one person. Bring a few slings and longer draws to get around tufa features and depressions that cause rope drag on these long routes.

A stick clip isn't necessary and most first bolts are close to the ground. 

Leaver biners

Do not bail off of quick links. The environment permanently freezes quick links shut and they become difficult or impossible to remove. If you need to bail, use a carabiner. 

Kneebar pads

This place is kneebar heaven. It's highly recommend to bring at least one kneepad if you're going to push your grade or be climbing above 5.11. Durable pants will be sufficient on many routes. The grades often assume you're taking the rests into account. On the stalactite routes you'll also want a shirt on as you'll get creative back rests, headlocks, chicken wings, threadthroughs, laydowns, rodeos etc.

Wrench

A double box-end 17mm x 19mm wrench is ideal to help local equippers with basic route maintenance.

Helmets

Overall, the rock quality in Kalymnos is really good but a helmet is never a bad idea. Goats on top of the cliffs can knock down rocks and tufas can break at anytime. Do not sit under people climbing, especially tufa routes. New routes and crags are constantly being added and helmets are highly recommended for newer crags. 

1,548 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Kalymnos

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b
 64
Thetis
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 108
Remember Wadi Rum
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 73
Taz
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 45
3 Ilots
Sport
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 64
Feta
Sport
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 108
Frapagalo
Sport
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 61
Resista
Sport
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
 65
Dafni
Sport
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a
 166
DNA
Sport
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a
 53
Kastor
Sport
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a
 49
Trela
Sport
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a
 81
Ricounet
Sport
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
 76
Ivi
Sport
5.12a/b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6a
 48
Mort aux Chèvres
Sport
5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b
 41
Spartacus
Sport
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Thetis Arhi > Arhi Right
 64
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b Sport
Remember Wadi Rum Ghost Kitchen > Main Wall
 108
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Taz Grande Grotta
 73
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
3 Ilots Telendos Island > Eros
 45
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Feta Odyssey
 64
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Sport
Frapagalo Secret Garden
 108
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Sport
Resista Ghost Kitchen > Left Wall
 61
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Sport
Dafni Ghost Kitchen > Main Wall
 65
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Sport
DNA Grande Grotta
 166
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a Sport
Kastor Arhi > Arhi Right
 53
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a Sport
Trela Grande Grotta
 49
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a Sport
Ricounet Secret Garden
 81
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a Sport
Ivi Grande Grotta
 76
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport
Mort aux Chèvres Sikati Cave
 48
5.12a/b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6a Sport
Spartacus Spartacus
 41
5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b Sport
More Classic Climbs in Kalymnos »

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