school group rock climbing

Rock climbing

Bowles is one of the best climbing venues in the South East, with its south-facing, quick drying sandstone and excellent access.

Bowles is the only UK outdoor centre with its own natural sandstone outcrop suitable for climbing – there are more than 230 climbs up to 10m in height across the range of grades from 1a to 6c. Bowles is soft sandstone so our guidelines should be followed to look after the rock

Rock climbing courses and lessons

For beginners learning to climb, our instructors are very experienced and will build your confidence and rope work skills to get you to the stage where you can climb independently. Call us to book a lesson – 01892 665665.

For children we run climbing courses throughout most school holidays as well as birthday experiences.

For Bowles’ courses and lessons we provide all equipment, except rock shoes.


The rocks are open at all times to climbers with their own gear. However they might be asked to relocate along the crag if a Bowles-organised session is taking place in a particular area.

There is a charge of £5 per adult (£4 after 5pm) or £3 for under-16s. A season ticket is available for £32 per person and can be bought from our office.

We charge climbing instructors bringing groups to Bowles £5 per person, including the instructor, regardless of age. Instructors need to register with the Bowles office before setting-up, showing proof of qualifications.

Our charges cover car parking, the use of our facilities and repair and maintenance of the rocks.  Any surplus goes to supporting our charitable work with young people.

We do not rent out or sell climbing gear, apart from guide books.

Getting here

Bowles has easy access by road or from Eridge train station (with a short walk). There is a map here for walking and driving directions

Rock Climbing ‘Top Tips’

If you are new to climbing or finding your way outdoors, book a lesson with an instructor who will soon bring you up to speed.

You don’t need much gear to climb outside on sandstone, just a rope, two harnesses, some karabiners, a couple of slings and a belay device.

If you take to climbing, buy your own climbing shoes, they will help you climb harder grades.

Bowles is a great place to climb in the summer evenings, the car park is so close to the crag that you can get several climbs in a short time.

Bowles Rocks faces south – this makes it quick to dry after rain and a sun trap in the summer.