There are two things that make Brisbane City unique: the lagoons and the natural cliffs in front of the CBD. Enjoying the lagoons is easy: go to South Bank, put your swimsuit on, grab a towel, and have fun! But rock climbing Kangaroo Point Cliffs can be a bit harder to organise. I’m sure the following tips will help! Where to start? What is needed? This article will help you plan your rock climbing activity!

Brisbane Kangaroo Point Cliff Abseiling
Abseiling Kangaroo Point

Also, if you’re just after the view but not after the thrill, you can take the easy way: go up the stairs and enjoy the view with a barbeque.

Scared of heights? Don’t give up just yet! I am scared of heights, but it does not stop me from rock climbing anymore. It took time and some effort (read more about it here), but I managed to fight my fear of heights. Give it a go with people you trust or with professionals: rock climbing can really help!


1. What level is required for rock climbing Kangaroo Point Cliffs?

If you have never done rock climbing before, I suggest joining a tour*. They will organise everything and teach you the basics.

You can also quickly learn the basics of rock climbing by starting indoor – there are many options for this in Brisbane. Urban Climb in West End is the largest one I know.

A student club from the University of Queensland (UQ) meets on Tuesdays and Thursdays nights at the Kangaroo Point cliffs, during the academic semester. Membership (incl. 2-week free trial) is open to all, there’s no need to be a student.

Brisbane Kangaroo Point Cliff Climbing

2. What equipment is needed for rock climbing Kangaroo Point Cliffs?

Again, if you don’t have rock climbing equipment, joining a tour* is the easiest and safest way. If you don’t live in Brisbane, it’s the logical way to go for rock climbing Kangaroo Point Cliffs.

Another option could be to hire rock climbing gear from the UQ student club (you’ll need to become a member).

Otherwise, no special equipment is needed if you pick a Sports style (when the wall is already bolted), just the usual:

  • Helmet
  • Ropes (two if you don’t want to lead climb), harness, karabiners
  • Climbing shoes
  • Chalk (it’s hot!)
  • Sunscreen and/or sun-protective clothes
  • Headlamp if you want to climb at night

If you choose a Traditional style (no bolts) or a mix (only a few bolts), you’ll need extra equipment.

If you are rock climbing with your own equipment, you can walk up the stairs to reach the top of Kangaroo Point cliffs, secure your rope up there and throw it down (don’t forget to check no one is under and yell “ROPE!” clearly). Of course, if you know how to lead, you can start from the bottom.

3. How to choose the section to climb

If you join a tour, they will take you to their preferred place for rock climbing or abseiling Kangaroo Point Cliffs. You won’t be able to choose your spot. It removes a big part of the planning preparation and makes it very easy to organise a rock climbing activity in Brisbane.

Otherwise, the Crag website lists all the routes that can be climbed on Kangaroo Point cliffs. First, click on the number of routes to reveal them. Then, choose the difficulty/grade (from level 12 to level 25).

Although it’s not eco-friendly, I still recommend printing the rock climbing guide, as the routes are hard to find on a phone. There are letters or marks on the wall or next to it to help.

The Australian Climbing Association QLD has created a Kangaroo Point Beginner Guide (pdf) that will help you start.

Brisbane Kangaroo Point Cliffs map

Last tip about Kangaroo Point cliffs:

If you’re there for the sunset, make sure you take a break from rock climbing to watch it from the top of the cliffs (while doing a barbecue!). It’s one of the best places to see the sunset on Brisbane CBD!

There are lights at night so you can even continue rock climbing after that!

Best Brisbane Sunset - Kangaroo Point Cliffs
Brisbane City from Kangaroo Point Cliffs

Have you done rock climbing at Kangaroo Cliffs before? How was it? Share your tips in the comments!

Where in Brisbane are Kangaroo Point Cliffs?

Kangaroo Point Cliffs are just near the Brisbane River, on the opposite bank from Brisbane City Botanic Gardens in Queensland‘s capital and the third biggest city in Australia. The cliffs are about halfway between South Bank and the Story Bridge. It’s a good option to consider if you’re looking for a place where to stay in Brisbane.

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  1. Anne

    This vaguely brings back memories as I think I saw people climbing when I was last in Brisbane. How cool to do such an adventurous outdoor activity in the city centre.

    1. Eloise

      Yes, it’s when I saw people doing it that I realised it was possible to climb them! It’s rare to link outdoor adventure with city so it’s definitely ver cool 🙂

  2. Amelie

    I’m also scared of heights and I was ready to screen NO WAY JOSE, but after ready your article, this actually sounds super lovely!

    1. Eloise

      Ahah! I convinced a friend she should try. She did very well although she didn’t make it to the top (but I’m sure she will next time) and had fun 😀

  3. Eric Gamble

    Sign me up for an abseiling tour! That is awesome and I bet at sunset it must be truly a beautiful sight! I am definitely adding abseiling Kangaroo Point to my Brisbane Bucket List when we get down to Australia!

    1. Eloise

      Abseiling isn’t a bad choice as it requires fewer efforts than climbing! 😀
      Don’t forget to be ready for the barbecue at the top, that’s a good Aussie experience too 😉

  4. Tamara Elliott

    How is the view from the cliffs? I haven’t made it to Brisbane yet, but love Australia!

    1. Eloise

      Hi, Tamara. The last photo in the article (in “Last tip”) shows the view from the cliffs. But when you’re climbing, the city is behind you so you cannot enjoy the view that much. That’s why it’s a good idea to organise a barbecue up there after the activity 😉

  5. Fiona

    Great tips! I’d need to seriously up my fitness levels to try the climb, but I’d be very happy to walk up. And it’s cool that Brisbane are so well organised and encourage the climb

    1. Eloise

      Thank you! You don’t have to commit to going all the way to the top if you want to try the climb 😉 But, yes, the stairs are a good option too! It’s indeed really great that the city encourages activities like these.

  6. Jose Harvey

    Kangaroo Cliffs in Brisbane definitely looks like quite the experience. You provide an excellent source of information for climbing these. I probably would stick to a tour because I’d really have no idea what I’m doing. But still, seems like something I’d really rather enjoy. You provide so much information and in such a concise fashion…which I appreciate. Even providing an awesome suggestion for a place to stay is the cherry on top! Thanks so much!

    1. Eloise

      Hi, Jose. It’s safer to use a tour if you have no idea what you’re doing! Rock climbing is a fun activity, but it’s a bit technical too. I hope you’ll try it one day!

  7. Nisha

    Looks like a cool adventure even for those who have not climbed before. When we went to Brisbane we did not even know such services existed to climb Kangaroo mountains. Good to note that one could use the stairs too for those less adventurous.

    1. Eloise

      Hi, Nisha. If you took a trip from Kangaroo Point to the CBD, you might actually have seen the cliffs. It may be impressive for those who have never climbed before, but for sure it’s a great experience! 🙂

  8. Alli Blair

    This sounds like such a fun adventure! I am sometimes nervous about heights, but an activity like this comes across like there is nothing to fear 🙂

    1. Eloise

      Hi, Alli. I agree. When I feel there is nothing to fear, it’s a lot easier to control the heights phobia for me. I still struggle when I know there is a risk!

  9. Tami

    So cool that you can go rock-climbing so close to the city! And it’s good that you were able to get past your fear of heights so you could enjoy this adventure…

    1. Eloise

      Hi, Tami. Yes, I’m glad almost every day that I managed to overcome that phobia. It opened many paths for more adventures 🙂

  10. loisaltermark

    I am definitely not a climber so I’m always impressed to read about people’s climbing adventures. I especially admire that you’re able to get over your fear of heights to do it. I think I would freak out!

    1. Eloise

      Hello, Lois. It took me a while to get over my fear of heights. I took one giant leap of faith (literally: bungee jumping 😉 to prove myself I could do it. Then, I went step by step in more “normal” situation (thank God we don’t bungee jump every day!!!) until I felt ready for more adventurous steps. And it worked 🙂 I still get nervous, but I now manage to control it before freaking out. Rock climbing really helped, if you ever want to try. I freaked out when I started, but that’s ok! 😉

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