The Ardeche is known as the adventurer's paradise. It is located close to Lyon in Southeastern France. It would be hard to find a better place for family climbing holidays. Ardeche gorge has got it all; beautiful settings, great weather, plenty of climbs in lower grades, there is always a river nearby to refresh yourself in and on top of that there is an option of combining climbing with many other adventure activities such as canyoning or canoeing.
The Ardeche is a great crag for beginners and children. It is a huge area with a majority of easy single-pitch climbs. However, you will also find sport climbs of the eighth grade there and multi-pitch routes of all difficulties too. There are literally thousands of sport climbs; all of which are well bolted but unfortunately some crags are very polished. The main Ardeche sectors are limestone but further North you will find granite crags as well as easy bouldering areas. The Ardeche provides you with all you need really but you do not go to the Ardeche to crank it hard though.
The best time to visit for the best climbing conditions is early Spring through to Autumn. Summers are too hot for serious climbing but you can still combine climbing in the shade with water sports and other activities that the area offers. The whole area is very popular among sporty tourists from all over Europe which unfortunately makes it very crowded during school and public holidays so if you can, try to avoid these periods.
As the area is very popular with tourists, there are a great variety of accommodation types you can choose from: campsites, guest houses and hotels. In the high season you might need to make reservations well in advance though.
The closest airports are in Avignon, Nimes and Lyon which are all less than 2 hours drive away. There is a good railway network in France but you will need to rent a car to get around.