/ Does anywhere rival Font (for a family climbing holiday)?

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Carolyn - on 06 Aug 2012
Well, as it says, really!

We've done Font every year with the kids, and they're now 3 & 6. They love it - sand to dig in, boulders to climb on, generally warmish and dryish, not too far to drive.

But are we missing any other gems now they're getting a bit bigger? I think we're at least a couple of years off Via Ferrata (I'd take the bigger one now, but his little brother would complain at that...). I can't see roped climbing working without an extra adult to deal with the endless queries and demands to play. Not necessarily climbing, but certainly active outdoors stuff.

Ideas, please!
Pids - on 06 Aug 2012
In reply to Carolyn:


Bouldering, beaches, surf and WAY quieter than Font

Can be a breeze, but as we are Scottish it didn't bother us
Heike - on 07 Aug 2012
In reply to Carolyn:

We went to the Provence this year - first time on our own with wee man (then 2 years 8 months). Seemed great. loads of French and German people people at the sports crags with kids, so he got looked after and learned to speak lots of languages. With two of them you should be fine with loads of places like Kalymnos, Geyikbayiri, Frankenjura, Val di Mello (bouldering), Costa Blanca.

We have had quite a few days over the summer just us two climbing with our boy playing at the bottom - seems fine, he does follow directions on where to go and he wears his helmet.So, I would say try and train them up for single-pitch!

In reply to Carolyn: Corsica? La Berarde? Ailefroide?
David Coley - on 07 Aug 2012
In reply to Carolyn: Another vote for Ailefroide.
verygneiss - on 07 Aug 2012
In reply to Carolyn:

There was an interesting article about Bretagne in a recent issue of Climb, it has tons of granite boulders (many on sandy beaches) and lots of trad climbs.
Sam Beaton on 07 Aug 2012
In reply to Carolyn:

Northumberland - great cragging and bouldering, huge empty beaches, much drier than most other climbing areas of the UK, great castles to visit, Holy Island, boat trips and Craster kippers!
RobertHepburn - on 08 Aug 2012
I love Font too, but I find it hard to persuade my family to go for more than one week year .

I have been to Kerloan, and the bouldering was ok (reasonable good granite, slightly crumbly in places), and the beaches were nice and quiet. It is quite a long way to go though, very flat round there which can be hard if it's windy, and the temps of air and sea are not really much better than the uk.

I also went to the alps near Bourg St Maurice, with some bouldering in various valleys, and some nice mountain biking using ski lifts (2650m -> 700m :->). Found the walking a bit hilly, and the geography very constraining, but the boulders (ne of Landry) were good but not that extensive.

Went to Spain last year, near Girona. There was good bouldering at Savasonna (near Vic, about 1 hour inland), although it was proper hot, and good beaches on the Costa Brava. Long drive or expensive flight though.

In the UK a good choice is Cornwall, especially right down the end. Carn Brae(Hill top) and Godrevey(beach) have excellent bouldering, and you can also go swimming and body boarding if it rains.

I have also been to Pembrokeshire - there is some ok bouldering but it is a bit spread out. The stuff on the beaches is a bit crumbly to be really good, and the inland stuff doesn't get much traffic, but fun can be had if you look hard enough.

Always fancied finding some bouldering in Croatia, or going to Varazze in Italy, so if anyone can comment on these that would be excellent!

Hope that helps,

Bobling - on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to Carolyn:

At the risk of de-railing the thread are all you folks in relationships where both halves climb? I have trouble sneaking in a morning's bouldering into my family holiday without WWIII breaking out. I am now so sick of the word "climbing" in family discussions that we refer to it as simply "The Hobby".
RobertHepburn - on 08 Aug 2012
My wife does not climb, but both my kids climb (8,12), although they climb much more in Font than other places.

When they were young I used to get up at 6am to go bouldering and be back by 9/10am. I still do this sometimes, but now it is as common for us to go to a crag for half a day, and my wife will read a book whilst we boulder/play. She is given a folding chair, food etc, and it needs to be fairly warm and insect free for this to work. This works best on accessible beaches with climbing. I also take the kids out for walks on my own some days, and purchase some silver jewelry to sweeten the deal :->.
Carolyn - on 09 Aug 2012
In reply to Bobling:

Yes, both halves climb. As do the kids, on their own terms. Although that does mean plenty of discussion on who's turn it is....

Font's fine for non-climbers who like the outdoors, though. My top tip's a hammock.... We also tend to do maybe half a day at the boulders, back to the campsite to let the kids at the swimming pool. One adult could pop back out in the evening (or sneak out early in the morning), but tbh, alcohol is generally more appealling by that point - it is a holiday after all!

In reply to everyone:
Thanks, some really useful suggestions - having tended to climb multipitch trad before kids I don't have much clue on bouldering destinations (or indeed sport, beyond the best known).
Toerag - on 22 Aug 2012
In reply to Carolyn: Guernsey. Best described as a mixture of Cornwall and Brittany, lots of bouldering next to good beaches. Safe. always a beach out of the wind as it's an island. See logbooks here or for climbing info or for general info.

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