The Best Grinding Spots in Pokémon HeartGold & SoulSilver

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The Johto games are known for one of the most powerful final trainers in the main series games: Red in Mt. Silver.

In HeartGold and SoulSilver, Red’s team is around Level 80 to 88. So you likely want to aim to be around that same level to even stand a chance against him.

So to help you get there (and to level up along your entire journey), here’s a few ideas for some cushy spots you can stop your journey and grind your levels up.


5. Repeat Gym Battles

Pewter City Gym Exterior in Pokemon HeartGold

Once you beat the 8th Gym Leader of Kanto, Blue, you’ll be able to go back and re-fight all 16 Gym Leaders – with higher levels to boot.

Their new levels range from Falkner’s levels of 48 to 56, to Blue’s team at levels between 67 to 72.

All the gyms are worth checking out, but the Fighting Dojo in Saffron is also a great place to consider grinding.

It’s not as consistent as the other places mentioned in this list. But the high levels are great, and combined with the fact that most of the Pokémon you’ll be fighting are all evolved, means that this strategy can dish out some great experience.


4. Cerulean Cave

Cerulean Cave in Pokemon HeartGold

Unlike most Kanto games, in HGSS you get immediate to access the Cerulean cave once you beat all 8 Kanto Gyms.

Once you enter, you’ll encounter tons of evolved Pokémon ranging from levels 46 to 49.

Perfect for grinding up those EXP levels.

Among the better Pokémon available is Ditto.

The great thing about Ditto is that if it transforms into a Pokémon that yields high XP when defeated, like a Legendary Pokémon, Ditto also yields that XP as well, but with possibly lower HP.

And this technique can actually be used with any Ditto you find in the game. It’s just that the Ditto outside Goldenrod City are likely a bit too low-leveled to help out so early in the game.


3. Mt. Silver

Mt. Silver in Pokemon HeartGold

You also get to access Mt. Silver once you beat all 8 Kanto Gyms.

The difference between Mt. Silver and Cerulean Cave is that… well, not too much. But Mt. Silver does have higher levels of wild Pokémon, ranging from levels 43 to 51 (except for Larvitars).

This is also where you find Red, so this is a decent spot to grind away until you feel confident enough to face him.


2. Route 47

Route 47 Screenshot from Pokemon HeartGold

Now this is the only place in this list that’s available before you beat the Elite Four. It’s still fairly late into the game though.

Route 47 is very versatile, since you can both use this place to train before and after the Elite Four.

Before you head to the League, you can grind here by beating up some Miltank and other evolved Pokémon – since they all give tons of XP.

After the Elite Four, you can focus on Ditto. Like mentioned earlier, Ditto copies EXP yield. And what’s better is that since Dittos here are kinda lower levels, they have lower EXP (and lower stats) – but same yield.

Not to mention that wild Ditto are pretty common here, with a 41% encounter rate.

At this point in the game, I’d say the best candidate for Ditto to copy is Blissey (if you can get one).

Blissey has the highest EXP yield, and its bulk is based on HP and not on defenses.

Since Ditto doesn’t actually copy HP, you can take down these wild Ditto with almost any Physical moves.

And you’ll be reaping the EXP as your rewards.


1. Indigo Plateau

Indigo Plateau HGSS Screenshot

As with most of the mainline games, the Pokémon League is a great place to grind your EXP out.

Well, once you at least finish the Johto part of the game.

What’s better is that in HeartGold and SoulSilver, when you beat the 8 Kanto Gyms, the Elite Four gets an upgrade to their team members.

So all their monsters would then be higher levels, and offer an even more competitive lineup (with more EXP to go around).

Since this is obviously more difficult, this is a solid grind area if your team’s levels are somewhere around 70s (or above).

But even before beating the Kanto gyms, the E4 is still undoubtedly one of the best places to grind up.

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