Castle Climbing Centre
We pick the best climbing venues in London, and all are suitable for kids. Think we've missed a great climbing wall? Tell us in the comments below
Green Lanes, N4 2HA
This climbing centre is splendidly housed in an old Victorian pumping station. Classes for nine- to 14-year-olds are held on Monday and Tuesday, and during the holidays; over-14s may climb unsupervised, with parental permission, once they have passed an assessment. For private tuition, the Gecko Club (www.geckos.co.uk) is based here (£40/hr plus £12.50 admission). Call for details of the party service.
Haverfield Rd, E3 5BE
If you've never tried this, you should: indoor rock walls provide the perfect chance to get to grips with climbing technique, and give you a pretty thorough workout in the process. The Mile End Climbing Wall is a brilliant place to start, offering weekend lessons for beginners - with a bit of work, you should have no trouble ascending towards your physical peak. Children from eight to 16 can attend beginner climbing sessions on weekday evenings and Saturday and Sunday mornings at this popular east London wall. Action-packed birthday parties for over-sevens can be held here, and there's a busy summer holiday programme.
Adelaide Rd, NW3 3NF
This impressive leisure centre is home to a 14-metre wall and bouldering
area, and offers a Junior Rock Club (7-16s) on weekday evenings and Sunday mornings, and Pebbles (4-7s) on Monday and Friday afternoons and Saturday mornings. Birthday parties can also be booked. Parents can slope off and enjoy some 'me' time in the lovely café near the centre's entrance.
1 Crowthorne Rd, W10 6RP
There are 120 lines and 350 routes to explore at Westway's impressive climbing centre. The cheapest way to get on the wall is to queue up for one of the drop-in sessions on Monday and Wednesday afternoons for five- to six-year-olds (4-5pm; £5.50), and seven- to 14-year-olds (4.30-6pm; £4.50), or the family session for over-fours on Sunday mornings (10-11.30am; £5.50 juniors, £10 parents). There are also bookable classes throughout the week.