5 epic adventures you probably haven't heard about

Are you inspired yet?
What will you do next? © Alec Moore
By Natalie Siagian

This adventure is presented in partnership with Contiki

As a species, we're fascinated by wild and inspiring adventures. We want to know all the details - why, where, how, for how long, how far, how did it feel?

Extraordinary tales of adventure travel are a great reflection of the incredible characters that inhabit this world. And as many incredible stories as there are out there, today we've just rounded up five.

Kinga Freespirit

Kinga Freespirit © Alechtron

WHO: Kinga Choszcz, a Polish traveller and travel writer

THE ADVENTURE: Hitchhiked her way around the world for five years

WHEN: 1998

WHAT HAPPENED: Kinga met the love of her life and partner in crime, Radoslaw Siuda (aka Chopin), after her first solitary journey to India and Nepal. They hitchhiked around the world for five years, setting off with just $600USD to their names. They made their way to America, NZ, Australia and Russia before ending up back in Europe.

In 2006, Kinga followed her heart to Africa, where she contracted cerebral malaria in Ghana - a disease that would eventually lead to her death. Throughout her experiences, she wrote a book called Led By Destiny which focuses on how one can find open and ready-to-help people anywhere in the world.

Juliana Buhring

Julia Buhring © Contiki/Julia Buhring

WHO: A British-German woman and Guinness World Record holder

THE ADVENTURE: The first and fastest woman to circumnavigate the globe by bike, riding over 29,000 kilometres in 152 days

WHEN: 2012

WHAT HAPPENED: Juliana only started cycling at the age of 30 in 2011, but by December 2012, she had already set her first Guinness World Record as the fastest woman to cycle from Naples around the globe by bike, clocking over 29,000 kilometres in 152 days! She was also the only woman to participate in the inaugural Transcontinental Race from London to Istanbul in 2013. Girl power or what?

Christoph Rehage

© The Longest Way

WHO: Otherwise known as the bearded man and creator of blog, The Longest Way

THE ADVENTURE: Walked for one year from China to Germany amassing over 4500kms

WHEN: November 9th, 2007

WHAT HAPPENED: Chris lived in Beijing, China and was pursuing Chinese studies. On his 26th Birthday, he decided to take one of his favourite hobbies – walking, to the extreme. He was to walk from China all the way back home to Germany.

He walked, and walked some more for over 4500kms. Along the way he grew a big patchy beard. And voila – after an incredible journey he suddenly became an internet sensation with this here time lapse video.

Sarah Marquis

Sarah Marquis © Contiki/Sarah Marquis

WHO: Swiss explorer and National Geographic traveller of the year

THE ADVENTURE: An extreme solo walk from Siberia to Australia over three years

WHEN: 2010

WHAT HAPPENED: Marquis is no stranger to adventure travel. At 17, she crossed Central Anatolia in Turkey on horseback. Then, inspired by her first big walk between 2002 and 2003 around Australia, she set off again on her 38th birthday to become National Geographic traveller of the year for 2015.

Marquis began her journey in the city of Irkutsk, Siberia and walked all the way to Australia. It took her a total of THREE YEARS!

As a solo female traveller on the adventure of a lifetime, she was no stranger to extreme situations. She had moments in remote places and once, in Mongolia, had to seek refuge in a culvert under a dirt road to avoid being harassed by horsemen.

There were also near death experiences: she spent three days in the Laos jungle with dengue fever, and tied her left foot to a tree so she wouldn’t drown herself in the river.

Nevertheless, Marquis determination and passion to continue walking, led her to Australia to become a living, breathing legend for all. #WhatAWoman

Chris Davenport

© Chris Davenport

WHO: Two-time winner of World Extreme Skiing championships and one of the world’s most accomplished big-mountain skiers and mountaineers

THE ADVENTURE: Skied almost every 14,000+ foot mountain in California, all 54 mountains in Colorado and even Mount Everest!

WHEN: 1996–2008

WHAT HAPPENED: Chris Davenport’s stellar ski career has put him in the hall of fame, and he’s just about ticked off every major mountain in the world.

Early in his career, in 1998, he climbed a 23,400ft peak near Everest and descended with nearly no high-altitude mountaineering experience.

What followed were two world skiing championships and the conquering of just about every big-mountain in California and Colorado. This cemented Chris' place as one of North America’s top 25 skiers. Now he spends a lot of his time making ski films and has starred in over 25 movies! How’s that for an adventure…

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