The Alternative Holiday: 3 Charity Challenges Abroad To Get Involved With

Over the course of the last five years, demand for charity challenges has increased by 92 per cent as new research from the fundraising tour operator, Charity Challenge has revealed. “For many, embarking on a charity challenge provides a tangible way for them to fight a personal battle that they might otherwise feel powerless to overcome,” as Simon Albert, Director of Charity Challenge, explained. “The ability to raise money for a charity that’s close to their heart and the personal development benefits that come with going somewhere extraordinary and overcoming a physical feat are the main motivating factors for the people who travel with us and the reasons that charity challenges are growing in popularity, particularly among women.”

Taking on a charity challenge abroad doesn’t always have to be so far from home either. Further findings from their research concluded that whilst the popularity of its classic challenges, such as the Sahara Desert, the Great Wall of China and Machu Picchu in Peru, has remained high over the past 20 years, demand for challenges closer to home is the fastest growing part of its business.

Charity Challenge first began offering UK-based challenges in 2015 with trips to the Lake District, Snowdonia, the Scottish Highlands and Yorkshire, they’ve experienced a jump in bookings by 200 per cent with a forecasted growth of 246 per cent on 2015. “Our UK-based challenges are proving so popular that we have launched a new Lake District challenge for 2019 and plan to add more adventures in iconic locations throughout the UK in 2020,” said Andy Baker, UK Operations Manager for Charity Challenge.

As Charity Challenge marks its 20th birthday, the company has launched three new trips; the “Highlights of the Tour Du Mont Blanc”, the “Lake District Triple Challenge” and the “North Face Kilimanjaro Summit Climb.”

Highlights of the Tour Du Mont Blanc 

A six-day “tough” category challenge, where participants trek the French, Italian and Swiss sides of Mont Blanc in the Alps, amid beautiful and raw mountain scenery. Walking up to eight hours each day on mountainous terrain and rough paths, challengers will be tested physically and mentally, with the backdrop of the magnificent Alps to spur them on.  To participate, adventurers must pay a deposit of £350 when they book and raise a minimum of £1,835 in sponsorship for the charity of their choice. Alternative funding options are available, details of which can be found online. Prices include flights from London to Geneva, transfers, accommodation for five nights, three meals per day, activity equipment, park entrance fees and the services of an English-speaking guide, drivers, cooks, porters and first-aid staff and supplies. Departures are available in June and September 2020.

Lake District Triple Challenge

A full-day challenge on foot, bicycle and kayak in the spectacular adventure playground of the Lake District National Park.  Categorised as “challenging”, the trip takes participants on a trek to the summit of one of the Lake District’s most iconic peaks, the Old Man of Coniston, before testing them on the off-road mountain bike trails of Grizedale forest and, finally, taking them by kayak across the iconic Coniston Water.  Participants must pay a deposit of £75 when they book and raise a minimum of £395 in sponsorship for the charity of their choice. Alternative funding options are available, details of which can be found online. Prices include accommodation at the YHA Coniston the night before the challenge, breakfast on the morning of the challenge, a packed lunch as well as drinks and snacks throughout the day, qualified mountain leaders, cycling leaders & mechanics and kayak instructors, all equipment hire including mountain bikes, helmets, open top kayaks and life jackets, group first aid supplies and a celebratory drink at the finish line. Departures are available in September and October 2019.

Kilimanjaro North Face Climb

In the “extreme category, the itinerary of this challenge takes adventurers up the virtually untouched north flank of the mountain, allowing them to reach the summit in daylight, something that the traditional Kili climbs have not been able to do. The route begins with a trek through a beautiful rainforest, before taking adventurers to the remote Northern Icefields and across the ReuschCrater, an area that no other Kilimanjaro itinerary touches.  The new, 12-day trip involves eight days of trekking and has several departure dates in 2019 and 2020, the first of which is 23 October – 3 November 2019. Participants must pay a deposit of £725 when they book and raise a minimum of £5,775 in sponsorship for the charity of their choice. Prices include international flights from the UK, two nights in hotels and six in camps, all meals, internal transfers, entrance fees to national parks or other places of interest visited on the itinerary, activity equipment, first-aid qualified leaders and doctor, first-aid supplies and the services of a support team including English-speaking guides, drivers, cooks and porters.

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Niamh Crawford-Walker

Niamh is a full time fashion and features writer at The Style Edit. Her work has previously appeared in IMAGE magazine, and Emirates Woman.

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