Rock climbing is one of the best ways to burn some calories while doing a fun activity. Plus, it’s something you can do with friends and family, which makes it the perfect way to socialize and exercise at the same time.
Fortunately, Cincinnati has several different places around the city where you can enjoy both indoor and outdoor rock climbing, depending on your preference.
In this post, we share a list of the best places to go rock climbing around the Cincinnati area.
Map of Places
The following map shows the locations of every place mentioned in this post.
The red markers indicate indoor climbing places and the blue markers indicate outdoor climbing places.
Indoor Rock Climbing
Here are some of the best places for indoor rock climbing around Cincinnati.
RockQuest Climbing Center
One of the most highly rated indoor rock climbing gyms in Cincinnati is RockQuest, located in Sharonville. Open on every day of the week, this gym boasts 15,000 square feet of climbing surfaces, which can be enjoyed by beginners and experts alike. There’s also a huge boulder in the middle of the gym, which is perfect for climbing around without a rope.
RockQuest offers speciality classes and private lessons as well, so if you’re completely unfamiliar with rock climbing you can learn the basics from some experts. Feel free to check out their website for rates and hours.
Location: 3475 E Kemper Rd, Cincinnati, OH 45241
Climb Time of Blue Ash
Another popular spot for indoor rock climbing is Climb Time of Blue Ash. As the name implies, this gym is located in the northern Cincinnati neighborhood of Blue Ash and offers a variety of climbing walls, both vertical and angled. With 7,000 square feet of space, this gym has something to offer for beginners, intermediate climbers, and experts alike. They also offer private lessons and classes for anyone interested in improving their skills and knowledge in rock climbing.
For a super in-depth review of this gym, check out this post by Anthony Sciutto.
Location: 10898 Kenwood Rd, Blue Ash, OH 45242
Website: Climb Time of Blue Ash
Climb Time Oakley
Another excellent spot for indoor rock climbing is Climb Time Oakley, a gym located in the heart of the trendy Oakley neighborhood on the east side of the city. The facility is 45 feet tall and offers lead climbing, top roping, speed climbing, and bouldering. This is another spot that is welcoming for beginners, intermediate climbers, and experts as well. Similar to Climb Time of Blue Ash, they also offer lessons and classes.
Location: 4460 Orkney Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45209
Website: Climb Time Oakley
Located in Loveland, Mosaic Climbing is another great place to do some indoor rock climbing in Cincinnati. They offer a variety of walls that extend all the way up to 55 feet tall for anyone interested in climbing or bouldering alike and for climbers at any experience level. What really sets this gym apart, though, is the impressive amount of fitness classes they offer, including strength & conditioning designed for climbers, rocket yoga, and high intensity interval training.
Location: 9501 Union Cemetery Rd, Loveland, OH 45140
Website: Mosaic Climbing
University of Cincinnati Climbing Facility
One of the smaller indoor climbing facilities in the city is the University of Cincinnati Climbing Facility, located in the campus rec center. The facility offers about 2,000 square feet of climbing space, which includes two 28-foot and four 40-foot top rope climbing areas where several people can climb at once. The facility is available for rental for private parties as well.
Location: 2820 Bearcat Way, Cincinnati, OH 45221
Website: UC Climbing Facility
Climb Cincy (coming soon)
Climb Cincy is another indoor rock climbing facility that is set to open in the Northside neighborhood in Spring of 2020.
Outdoor Rock Climbing
Here are some of the best places for outdoor rock climbing either around Cincinnati or within a 2-hour driving radius.
The best place to go rock climbing outdoors without leaving Cincinnati is Eden Park. Located in the Mt. Adams neighborhood, the park is home to a wall that used to be part of an old reservoir that has become a popular place for locals to do some rock climbing. The wall is fairly jagged and bumpy in many places, which naturally lends itself to rock climbing as it has many built-in spots that are perfect for placing your hands and feet as you scale the wall.
John Bryant State Park
Another excellent place to go climbing outdoors is John Bryan State Park, located about 1.5 hours north of Cincinnati. This state park has an impressive variety of walls scattered throughout the park that make for perfect climbing and boulder spots. Check out this post by Mountain Project for a list of the six best climbing locations in the park.
Another popular place to go rock climbing outdoors is Hocking Hills, located about 2 miles east of Cincinnati. This area is home to some of the largest forests in all of Ohio, and, as a result, is home to plenty of great places to go climbing and bouldering. In fact, nearly 100 acres of forest have been set aside specifically for rock climbing and rapelling. Find more info about this designated area on the Hocking Hills website.
Red River Gorge
Another popular spot to go climbing or bouldering near Cincinnati is Red River Gorge, located about two hours south of the city in Kentucky. Because of the sheer size and scale of the area, there are plenty of amazing places to get your climb on around the Gorge. Check out this post from Mountain Project for a list of the best places to go climbing around the area.
Bonus: Once you’re done climbing, be sure to check out Miguel’s Pizza, a wildly popular pizza place located in the heart of the Red River Gorge that offers comfort food for climbers and hikers after a long day of being outside.