While cyclists and trail runners are spoiled for choice when it comes to fun challenge events to plan an adventure holiday around, hikers, on the other hand, haven’t traditionally had many options to choose from, with either a self-planned trip or a traditional walking holiday being the only real options.
Enter Highlander, a Croatia-born company offering a calendar of unique long-distance hiking events right around the globe.
Founded by a group of friends in the beautiful Velebit mountains of Croatia and now hosted by a long list of countries including Austria, Portugal, Serbia and North Macedonia, Highlander gives hiking enthusiasts the chance to venture deep into dramatic mountain landscapes without the need to worry about top-to-bottom trip logistics.
Each event has three different formats to choose from, including a 100km trek split over 5 days, a shorter 55km trail split over 3 days or a 30km one designed for those who only want the one night out on the trail.
It’s by no means a race, with entrants encouraged to go at whatever pace they’re comfortable with. They just need to make sure to stop by at each checkpoint along the way where they’ll be able to camp with other participants and enjoy things such as yoga classes, workshops, book and movie presentations and even live music.
Food and drink will be provided over the course of the entire trip, though participants will still need to have the equipment to sustain themselves for a multi-day wilderness trip, including a backpack tent, sleeping bag and camping stove.
The most prominent event in the first half of the Highlander 2021 calendar will be held in Austria on 28th July to the 1st of August. This takes entrants on an adventure through the Alpine region of Murau, known for its green forests, idyllic alpine pastures and unforgettable views from the mountaintops. One of the highlights visited along the way includes Steinschloss – a clifftop 12th century castle that rises above a sprawling forest.