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Anglesey is one of Europe’s closely guarded secrets in many ways – but especially for climbers who have found the island to offer some of the most exhilarating climbs and spectacular views to be found anywhere on the continent. Whether you’re looking to test yourself or looking for a less strenuous climb to a summit, you’ll find what you need on the island and be greeted with glorious sights of mountains and sea.

What is Sea Cliff Climbing?

Sea cliff climbing is a truly unique rock climbing experience, requiring additional skills and attention to master the routes while the sound of the waves below adds an extra thrill to the experience. Although this category does include deep-water soloing, the majority of sea cliff climbing is done with full safety equipment.

Depending on access, sea cliff climbing often begins with an abseiled descent, which means climbers will often need to descend with the equipment to make the ascent. This requires a new set of skills and awareness for many climbers, as trailing rope can be carried out by the water or quickly become tangled. It is also recommended that climbers consider the use of a bandoleer in case a quick release is necessary due to an emergency.

Best sea cliff climbing locations on Anglesey

The important thing for climbers to bear in mind is that sea cliff climbing is different from normal climbing, and might require some additional upskilling in skills peculiar to the form. Be honest with yourself and either choose an easier climb than you would usually, or take a guided climb until you’re familiar with the new requirements. All that being said – Anglesey has some of the best sea cliff climbs in Europe, and you’ll be desperate to test yourself again and again.

You can find exceptional detail on Anglesey’s awesome sea cliff climbs (including combined grades, a logbook and wishlist) on the UKClimbing website links below each list.

drone captured image of lighthouse from the air with cliffs in the foreground

Gogarth North

  • Main Cliff: – Requiring an abseiled descent prior to the climb, Main Cliff has dozens of potential routes ranging from E1 to HVS and with a wide variety of technical grades. Some of these climbs are really not for the faint of heart!
  • Wen Zawn: – With some ascents reachable on foot, others requiring an abseilled descent, Wen Zawn has routes that run the full range of difficulty and technical grades. While the easier to reach climbs can occasionally get busy, those requiring a more committing reach are generally free and available year round.
  • Easter Island Gully: – Committing to reach and, therefore, seldom busy, Easter Island Gully has plenty of tough climbs that will have you thinking during and ready for the pub by the end. Even the easiest routes here tend to have high technical grades making it popular among experienced climbers.
Woman climbing on rock outdoor, close-up image of climber hand in magnesium powder

Gogarth South

  • Mousetrap Zawn: – A ban on climbing due to protected birdlife takes this climb out of contention between February and August, but it’s worth the wait. With several climbs ranging from an intermediate to expert level in ease and technical requirements, you’ll be able to make a day of it while experiencing the majesty of the landscape.
  • Red Wall: – The technical requirements of Red Wall make it popular with expert climbers and those looking to push themselves.
  • Yellow Walls: – With some incredible climbs on offer, some requiring an initial abseiled descent, Yellow Walls features routes that may require a rest stop for even the most experienced climber during damper conditions. Climbs range from E1 to HVS, but all with high technical grades.
female rock climber climbing on mountain cliff

Rhoscolyn

  • Sea Cave Zawn: – Reachable via a bit of a scramble or short abseil, Sea Cave Zawn has some awesome climbs ranging from E1 all the way to HVS but with a generally high technical rating. The views alone are worth it, but the climb will definitely leave you wanting more.
  • Fallen Block Zawn: – Damp can make Fallen Block Zawn a little treacherous, but it’s worth waiting for the right conditions as there are some exceptional routes. Accessible with a traverse at low tide, or via abseil at high tide, there are some highly technical climbs on offer.
  • Llawder Zawn: – Rhoscolyn’s main crag, Llawder Zawn takes a little work to get to, but rewards climbers fully with the routes and views on offer. There are climbs for all levels, but experienced company is a good idea as the technical level can be a challenge for beginners.
Smiling teen boy in protective helmet abseiling from cliff rock wall using rope

Where to Book Lessons and Guided Climbs

Whether you’re looking to step out of your comfort zone to attempt a more difficult climb than normal or looking to take up the pursuit, Anglesey has some fantastic companies offering lessons and guided climbs.

Anglesey Pursuits

53 Maeshyfryd Road,
Holyhead,
LL65 2AW

With a variety of supervised climbs running between 9am and 4:15pm, Anglesey Pursuits only requires that you bring yourself, a rucksack and some sensible clothes (and a picnic for full day bookings). Prices for activities include:

  • Half day (adult): – £45 per person
  • Half day (child): – £30 per child
  • Full day (adult): – £70 per person
  • Full day (child): – £50 per child

 

With plenty of selection in terms of kayak and expert tuition and supervision on the day, Anglesey Pursuits is great for beginners, or for anyone wanting to take a step up to the next difficulty level with a little support.

Adventure Activities Wales

2 Rowen Cottages,
Y Felinheli,
LL56 4RX

Offering climbing for all abilities, Adventure Activities Wales can provide you with everything you need, from helmets and harnesses to rock shoes and chalk, and will allow you to use your own equipment provided it passes inspection.

With full and half day excursions available for all ages, they provide the perfect opportunity to take up a hobby that will be with you a lifetime. Prices vary, but as a guide the price are as follows:

  • Half day (adult): – £50 per person
  • Half day (child): – £35 per child
  • Full day (adult): – £70 per person
  • Full day (child): – £50 per chil
  • Extended day (adult): – £80 per person
  • Extended day (child): – £60 per child

 

Anglesey Activities

Porthdafarch Rd,
Holyhead,
LL65 2LP

Offering supervised climbs for half or full days, Anglesey Activities provides the key safety equipment such as helmets, harnesses and ropes. You’ll need to take sensible clothes, a rucksack and any sundry items necessary for the day and conditions (warm or windproof clothing, sun cream, medication etc.)

Anglesey Activities cater for group activities (bookings of 8 people per instructor) and for a full range of experience levels. Prices vary, but for the half day are as follows:

  • Half day (adult): – £50 per person
  • Half day (child): – £35 per child

 

Knowledgeable and approachable trainers make climbs with Anglesey Activities perfect for families or groups with members that might need a little extra support.

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