Tsampa Birra (5.12a)
Plakias, Crete, Greece Dreamy beachside limestone on a continuous 600-footlong wall stacked with routes makes Plakias, a small town on the isle of Crete, a destination sport area. Tsampa Birra follows 15 bolts of jamming, liebacking, and discontinuous cracks, offering holiday climbers a chance to hone their crack skills and enjoy the technical, vertical terrain. When the photographer Jim Thornburg saw this rainbow pop, he ran up a nearby 5.9 (he’d left a rope on the route), self-belaying as quickly as possible to get into position. “I was happy I got up in time for the most intense moments of both the rainbow and the climb,” he says. Most climbers stay at studios a short walk from both the crag and the warm, clear waters of the Mediterranean. With all of Plakias’s killer attributes, “It’s hard not to enjoy yourself here,” says Nobrega.