Mountain Climbing Holidays

Be a hero. Climb a mountain.

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Mountain climbing holidays are the best kind of holidays.

There's a reason why we're always climbing the things. It's because mountains are beautiful, because you get to feel a sense of accomplishment on a mountain climbing holiday, because you get a new perspective on the world and, to paraphrase George Mallory, because they're there.

That said, mountain climbing holidays don't have to be about climbing the highest mountains in the World. Sure, we'll go up Mont Blanc and have a hell of a time doing it, but often it's the lesser climbed mountains that make for the most memorable trips. That's why we also climb Mount Toubkal in Morocco, Mount Kazbek in Georgia, Mount Maglic in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cotopaxi in Ecuador and so many more, alongside the likes of Kilimanjaro and heading to the base camp of Mount Everest.

Climbing mountains and bagging summits is a great way to travel. It's important to give each mountain top and mountain the respect it deserves, though. We're not conquering mountains (they don't fight back after all, however much the weather may make you think they do), and we're not battling nature on mountain climbing holidays. We're moving through it. We're remembering that we're part of it - that society doesn't have to be separate from nature; we're as much a part of it as the flowers and the grass and the rock you'll see on your way to the summit.

All that stuff about having to go to the mountain because the mountain won’t come to you, that’s us down to a tee; our very own, problem-free, philosophy. Sign up to one of these mountain climbing holidays and release your inner Edmund Hillary. A mountain climbing holiday is - we promise - a holiday that you'll remember for a long, long time.

Mountain Climbing Holidays: Where to Start?

We don't do mountain climbing holidays by halves. Mountains you can climb with us include Mount Toubkal (4,167m), which is the highest mountain in North Africa, Mount Cotopaxi (5,897m), which is the third highest active volcano in the world, and Mount Damavand (5,671m), which as well as being Iran’s highest peak is also the highest volcano in Asia. We also do trips up Mount Triglav (2,863m), the highest mountain in Slovenia, and Mount Olympus (2,918m), the home of Zeus and the highest mountain in Greece. Yes we have a thing about highest...

If you’ve ever dreamed of conquering the Seven Summits, we can help you out with our climb up Mount Kilimanjaro (the highest mountain in Africa at 5,895m) and our climb up Mont Blanc (the highest mountain in Western Europe at 4,810m). Technically, of course, Mont Blanc is only included in the Hackett version of the Seven Summits but let’s not get bogged down in technicalities. Be a hero. Climb some mountains. Make a mountain climbing holiday out of it.

Alright. What Else?

Some mountains are big, some mountains are really big, and some mountains are really, really, big. From big to really, really, big, our mountain climbing holiday trips cover the full spectrum. We’ve got a fair few summits under 3,000m for you to take on, but we also do an adventure that takes in Nepal’s 6,476 metre-high Mera Peak.

On one of our mountaineering experiences, you could be ascending up an active volcano, on another - you might be trekking through forests, crossing glaciers, using ice-axes and crampons, or managing your head for heights while clipped up to a via ferrata. Whatever summit you choose to tackle, it’ll be a challenge but due to variations in height and terrain each mountain climbing holiday has its own distinct feel. Find one that’s right for you.

Why come on a Mountain Climbing Holiday With Us?

So you want to climb a mountain, but don’t know why you should climb a mountain with us? Well firstly we’re so confident in the quality of the trips we offer that we actually guarantee happiness (yes, really). Since the moment we started doing this, we’ve inspired thousands of people to swap the rat race for something so much more inspiring than your office’s dress-down Friday. Come see what all the fuss is about by joining our tribe of spontaneous spirits today.

If you’re still not convinced by us, maybe the fact our business model funnels 80% of your spend into the local economy will sway you. Or what about that way we dig into our own pockets and invest revenue into supporting critical conservation projects around the world? Sounds good, right? Sounds like something you’d want to be a part of? Yeah, we thought so.

How Fit Do You Need to Be?

Look. We could sugarcoat this and say “Don’t worry about it. You’ll be fine. A mountain climbing holiday is no more difficult than popping down to the corner shop to pick up a Yorkie, and can of Vimto.” That though would be a lie. Climbing mountains isn’t easy. There’s a reason, after all, why every song that’s ever dealt with overcoming adversity has lyrics about mountains. It’s because, at times, mountains are a struggle, a challenge, an obstacle that requires climbers to dig deep within themselves for hidden reserves of mental and physical strength.

Days on our mountain climbing trips might include up to 11 hours of trekking, with early starts par for the course. You might be able to do many of these trips if you’ve never bagged a summit before, but you’ll need to have a good fitness level. And if you’re planning on tackling some of our highest ones, we’d recommend that you’ve at least climbed 4,000m before.

We obviously don’t want to put you off, but it’s important to read the itineraries of these trips beforehand rather than jumping in blindly. Don’t just pick the biggest one because you want to impress people down the pub. Pick one that suits you. Reinhold Messner, for example, didn’t just wake up one day and climb Everest with no prior mountaineering experience. He built up to it, taking on increasingly more difficult challenges as he went. Be like Reinhold.

What to Pack for a Mountain Climbing Holiday?

You’re not going to be carrying four oxygen tanks, a portaloo, multiple pairs of crampons, a bed, a tent, and a load of cooking equipment up the mountain. You’re not a Sherpa guide, and nobody’s expecting you to be one. Most of the mountaineering kit on our trips will be provided by the expert team assigned to getting you up that hill. That being said, if you arrive in the mountains with only a vest, a pair of flip flops, and some Bermuda shorts to your name… you’re going to have problems.

We’ll provide you with a checklist when you book but, as a rule, you’ll need to bring clothing for all weathers, worn-in boots, thermals, sunscreen, a water bottle, a basic first aid kit and a head torch. All that and, of course, a can-do attitude.

What About Accommodation?

Accommodation really varies depending on the type of trip, and the length of the climb. Mont Blanc, for example, will involve mountain huts with dorm-style bunk beds whereas on Mount Fansipan (3,143m), in Vietnam, you’ll be staying in tin huts.

Some of the shorter climbs we run don’t require you to spend the night on the mountain while at the other end of things, in the high places of Nepal, you’ll find yourself sleeping in some very traditional tea houses. Each of our mountain climbing adventures is different but, whichever one you go for, you should expect a pretty back-to-basics approach. But hey, isn’t that all part of the fun?

A Note on Altitude Sickness

When you go trekking in the mountains, there’s always the risk of getting altitude sickness. Whether you’re young, old, middle-aged, fit or unfit, the chance of it happening is always there; lurking just beneath the surface. Symptoms can vary from one person to the next, but it’s important to know what to look for and be honest with your guide if he asks you how you’re doing.

Things to watch out for on the mountain include headaches, heavy breathing, and numbness in your fingers. Communicate with your guide regularly, and don’t let the dream of summiting lead you to taking unnecessary risks with your own safety. The mountain isn’t going anywhere so much better to walk away and live to climb it another day than do anything silly. Worth mentioning as well that some of the treks we run include acclimatisation days that will help to reduce the risk of altitude sickness when you’re on the upper echelons of the mountain.