Image © Manchester Climbing Centre via Facebook

Where to Go Indoor Rock Climbing in Manchester

Maisy Farren

Rock climbing might not be the first thing that springs to mind when you think of a workout or hobby, but this total body workout is both enjoyable and extremely healthy – ideal for your 2020 resolutions. You should expect the activity to get even more popular following the summer Olympics, as this year is the first year that the sport has been included in the games! For an afternoon out with friends, a quirky alcohol-free date idea or simply a midweek workout – climbing is the one to watch. 

Spotlight on: Manchester Climbing Centre
St. Benedict’s Church, Bennett Street, Manchester, M12 5ND
Where better to learn a new skill than at Manchester’s most popular climbing centre? The sports centre has been open since 2005 and offers plenty of rope and non-rope climbing routes, along with plenty of training facilities and expert instructors. Those looking for a rope climb will find over 195 rope and lead routes in a variety of grades and styles. These are swapped around quarterly so that regulars don’t run out of challenging routes to climb. For non-rope climbers, the centre boasts a dedicated bouldering area featuring over 80 problems and a separate training space (The Attic) for expert boulderers.
Whether you’re an expert or a complete novice, Manchester Climbing Centre has an afternoon session for you. Beginners sessions start at a flat rate of £15 for all ages (aged 4+) and take place in small groups. You can also purchase a day pass for just £9 (£8 for kids) or an unlimited membership for £45 a month! 

Best of the rest: 
The Depot
Unit N1/N2 Mosley Road, Central Park Estate, Trafford Park, Manchester, M17 1PG
What? The largest bouldering wall in Europe! 
Where? In the centre of a huge industrial estate in Trafford Park. 
Why? If you don’t fancy getting roped into wall climbing, then get into bouldering! A more freestyle climbing experience, bouldering features walls of routes (called problems) atop matted floor for when you fall! Perfect for people of all fitness and experience levels. 
Rock Over Climbing
Park Garage, Cheviot Street, Manchester, M3 1LW
What? The biggest climbing centre in the North West with 300 bouldering problems, 60 rope routes and 18 auto-belays (a way of getting into rope climbing). 
Where? Just a 10-minute walk from Manchester Victoria, in the Strangeways area! 
Why? As well as offering tutorials for beginners and plenty of routes for the more experienced amongst you, Rock Over Climbing also has a vast soft play and kids rock climbing space for your little cheeky monkeys. 
Vertical Chill
130 Deansgate, Manchester, M3 2QS
What? Indoor ice climbing! Essentially all of the above… on ice!     
Where? Inside the Ellis Brigham Mountain Sports store on Deansgate. 
Why? Ok, so this is a little different from the previous selections. Instead of grabbing on to holds (the coloured stones lined up along the walls) you’ll instead don expert equipment and scale an ice wall with ice picks – under the watchful eye of an expert, of course. Want to try before you buy? Nip into the Ellis Brigham for a browse and watch people give it a go! 

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