Elevation: 360 ft
GPS: 3.248, 101.688 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
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Shared By: Tony B on Jan 7, 2009
Admins: Nate Ball
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The Batu Caves area is comprised of a goodly number of crags central to the City of K.L. (Kuala Lumpar). Named after the more famous attraction of the area, the cave itself, the crags are dispersed all over the small mountain of rock in which the caves are present. Finding the caves themselves is no problem, as you can simply ask any cabbie to take you there. Finding a place to 'Panjat Batu' (climbing rock) is less straight forward and will probably require some difficulty unless you speak some Malay (Indonesian got me by, actually) or Mandarin, or happen into just the right cab. For the most part, KL is a cosmopolitan town which concerns itself very little with fringe sports, such as climbing.

While each Wall in the Batu Caves area is slightly different, the overall charicter is fairly consistent. Overhanging limestone with Tufas and Globs for holds, riddled by pockets and dressed by vines and trees, the rock might remind you of an urban Thai crag, perhaps in a few cases only if you substitute distant road noise for waves and dust for sand. The rock is generally good and the bolts are as well. A vast majority of the climbing here is sport, if not only for the nature of hte rock, then perhaps due to the fact that some vine or tree would grow to fill any crack present about as fast as you could cut it away.

Keep in mind your equateral position, as well as the fact that you are inland. The tempatures will be hotter than in Thailand or on the coast, and it will be humid, with a reasonable chance of rain during the wet season. Storms can come fast and furious, but most of the climbing is just one to three pitches tall, so you should have time to get down.

While this is not an international destination, it is a place to go and visit if you are passing through, and most certainly the best area to climb if you are in town for business or some other pleasure.

The Book "Climb Malaysia: A Climbing Guide" covers the area. Edition 1 is dated and is missing some climbs, but is adequate to get you around and idenify most of the popular routes. I do not know if there are subsequent editions.

Getting There

From City Center, head to the Batu Caves area on Jin Kuching (cat road?) North to Jin Batu Caves and head East, as towards the Genting Highlands.
The Cab driver will try to drop you off at the stairs to the caves, which are nowhere near the climbing.
Best to have a guidebook in hand with maps about now...
But if you zoom in on google maps to the location I have input, and can follow that, you will end up at Damai Wall, the most popular crag...

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Ken H
Granite, UT
Ken H   Granite, UT
We stayed at Grand Place Hotel (we paid 200 RM ($65 US for a 4 person room which included breakfast) as recommended by the guidebook. Dynasty Hotel is next door and seemed like it would be worth the 30% more. Regardless, Dynasty is a better place to tell cabi's you are going and to get a cab at.

We had better luck with set pricing with cabi's. Especially to the airport, we agree to 100 RM ($33 US), and our cab was flying for the 45 minute ride. Just know there is no cab regulation in KL city so pick a cab which looks good and don't be afraid to say no and walk away. Oddly some of the cab companies did seem to be all Indian or all Chinese. The Indian cabs did not have meters and haggled the most and the Chinese cabs had meters and often preferred to use them even though they drove fast.

If you go see the temple, cabs in Batu Caves Temple area where a rip off walk out to the street and catch one. There is a gas station just east of the temple which is very good to catch a cab at. Walk over and pick the best looking cab that speaks english. Feb 6, 2011
Nate Ball
Portland, OR
Nate Ball   Portland, OR  
A little beta from a brief trip here...

We stayed at the Batu Caves Budget Hotel. It was 75MYR/night for a four-person room that had air conditioning and warm showers, or 65 for a two-person. There is a really good restaurant next door serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as a 7-11 and water refill station within a two-minute walk. It's a 30-40 minute walk to any of the walls. Vertical Adventures, as well as other restaurants, grocery stores, and the Avatar Hotel (perhaps a better option for roughly the same price) are all in the same area on the other side of the highway, the same side as Nyamuk Wall.

Damai Wall may be interesting for tourists and guided groups, but is otherwise uninspiring. The multi-pitch climbs might be fun though. Nyamuk is by far the most popular with local climbers. The rock quality here is excellent, there are a variety of grades, routes are long, and there are several dozen to choose from. Nanyang is supposedly the only other wall with a maintained trail and bolts. However, we didn't make it there. Red Rocks and Comic Wall supposedly suffer from corroding hardware. White Wall's approach trail has disappeared into suburban development. Such a shame, as they are obviously high-quality walls.

The climbing scene here is lackadaisical at best. Because the sun is on the walls (except for Damai) until noon, and because it's so damn hot all the time, most people either don't bother or only climb for a few hours in the afternoon. Supposedly the indoor gym in the city is a big deal.

Anchors are often a single huge staple placed vertically with a rams-horn lower-off. So much for redundancy.

A 60m rope is essential for lowering off many routes.

Ladies, Malaysian men will blatantly check you out, regardless of what you're wearing, though covering up (at least on the way to the crag) may reduce the stare-time.

And be share to make a trip to Bukit Takun! Nyamuk is worth a visit, but if you want to see something new, that's outside of the city, with a short approach and big walls... BT is the place to be! Feb 23, 2015
Tony B
Around Boulder, CO
Tony B   Around Boulder, CO
Nate, thanks for the contribution - the hotel sounds like a great find.
One correction to add to your commentary though:
"Because the sun is on the walls (except for Damai) until noon"

Part of the year, yes. But being below the trips, as you know, means that the sun comes from the NORTH for what we'd call Summer.

Also - Nanyang Wall is at least as good as Nyamuk. Check it out next time! Feb 23, 2015
Tony B
Around Boulder, CO
Tony B   Around Boulder, CO
But of course! Kamu boleh Bahasa Mayayu?
Nyamuk means Mosquito, man...
Tray Nanyang! (Nanyang means "everybody".)
Damai wall might actually be more popular though.

Likewise, weekends without too early of a start are a good idea. Oct 19, 2018