Legendary explorer, Kingsley Holgate, has just led a South African-based team on epic nine-month, 35,000km journey from Cape Agulhas on the southern tip of Africa, to the Nordkapp in Norway’s Arctic Circle.
Two years in the making, it is the first ‘Hot Cape to Cold Cape’ transcontinental expedition to travel the entire length of Africa and Europe in recent years, and the 40th geographic and humanitarian odyssey for the renowned explorer and his experienced team.
To give the occasion some African flair on the reefs of Nordkapp in Norway, the team built an iviven (stone cairn) on the Nordkapp rocks, topped with pebbles from Cape Agulhas, and symbolically emptied a traditional Zulu calabash filled with seawater from the southern tip of Africa where The Indian and Atlantic Oceans meet.
Past world-first missions by the Holgate team have included orbiting the globe past the Tropic of Capricorn; 449-day trip to track the contours of Africa through 33 countries; exploring the geographical center of Africa deep in the rain forests of the Republic of the Congo; and being the first exploration team in history to reach all seven ‘extreme’ geographic points on the African continent! See ”Expedition of Hope”
Like all Holgate campaigns, this transcontinental campaign was also a journey of purpose.
Traveling in three expedition-laden new Land Rover Defenders, the six-man team carried out humanitarian work that assisted about 300,000 people along the route of the campaign through Africa,
It was one of the world’s first carbon-neutral campaigns, with the team helping to plant 6,000 indigenous Albany thicket trees in the Eastern Cape to offset the campaign’s carbon footprint.
Holgate also helped launch the One Million Tree Plantation program near Tanzania’s famed Serengeti.
”What has been an overwhelming experience of this journey is how ordinary people in every country we’ve journeyed through, no matter their age, nationality, culture, race or religion, just want to live in peace,” concluded Kingsley. “The expedition’s Scroll of Peace and Goodwill is full of hundreds of heart-warming messages.”
“One of the best things about expanding your horizons through travel and adventure is that it gives one hope for the future.”
Images courtesy Getaway magazine”. Top image Kingsley and son Ross holding the calabash.
Bottom image taken at 71 degrees north latitude – the northernmost tip of Europe that you can drive. Here, 300-metre-high cliffs drop into the Arctic Ocean, which extends to the North Pole