Cornish Coastal Challenge
This long-weekend trek, through some of Britain’s most beautiful landscapes, follows Cornwall’s dramatic coastline from Lizard Point, the most southerly point of the British Isles. Our goal is Land’s End, the famous ‘end’ of the country and its most south-westerly tip. The landscapes are spectacular, with rugged cliffs, hidden coves and old fishing villages forming a beautiful backdrop to the blue sea. The walking is very hilly, steep in places, and the distances challenging considering the terrain. This is a tough challenge, but a spectacular one which will give you an unforgettable sense of achievement! We camp en-route, and finish with a slap-up meal at Land’s End.
Walking Challenges UK
What is a Walking challenge?
A great relaxing way to raise funds for your favorite charity is by participating in walking challenges in the UK. Walking challenges are fun, fulfilling and enable you to fully enjoy and engage with the route you take. You can find walking events that take you through parks, cities, countryside or even to the top of mountains. Varying in length and difficulty they are a great way to keep fit and healthy whilst raising money for a great cause
Anyone can take part in charity treks or a sponsored walk or charity trek whatever their level of fitness, this makes them ideal for anyone wanting to take part as a way to raise money for a great cause. There is less rigorous training or preparation needed compared to a run, but you’ll still want to get yourself ready as you need endurance more than anything. Any walks for charity can provide great motivation to keep up your training regime and propel you to the finish line.
Training and Preparation
Walking challenges can vary from a 5k walk or 10k walk up to larger challenges such as walking marathons or even sponsored walks for charity that may span a few days. You will need a good amount of endurance as many challenges incorporate uphill and downhill sections that will tire you out quickly if you are not used to long distance walking. It is critical for you to exercise regularly in order to improve your endurance and begin to build up stronger leg muscles that can withstand hours and hours of use.
Ideally, you should begin training by walking three times a week – use a mix of leg exercises combined with core strengthening techniques to build and improve muscle. And walk, a lot. You can easily incorporate walking in to your lifestyle – a trip to the shop, visiting family or friends etc can all be done of foot rather than taking the car.
You’ll want to try and give yourself some routes that you can practice on and try to extend the length of these walks. Start off with just a few miles and slowly try to build up to longer distances.
Mix it up
Once you’ve got accustomed to walking longer distances, you can then start to take your activity on to different types of surfaces. These should ideally include grass, hill and pavement, and in different weather conditions.
Your training program should never be all work and no play – you can reward yourself with treats or goals at the end of walks. Instead of taking the car to the movies, walk instead and use that as your motivation.
Food for thought
People mostly worry about what to eat or drink during training and at the walking event. There are no hard and fast rules to this – jut make sure to drink lots of water or sports drinks to keep yourself hydrated and energised. You need to have a healthy daily intake of proteins and carbs to maintain your energy levels and ensure you don’t burn out. During the walk you can eat carbs and energy containing foods to keep you going to fight the fatigue.
Get the right Gear
Apart from nutrition, invest in some good clothing and walking shoes or boots. Although walking boots or shoes can be a bit costly, they are durable and won’t give you blisters. Similarly, you want to buy high-quality socks that won’t rub your feet too much and allow your feet to breath. Also it’s worth having a second pair spare just in case they get wet during the walk.
A majority of walkers prefer to wear lightweight trousers and a sports top for the main event. Whilst not essential, like socks, they will allow your skin to breath and keep sweat away whilst keeping you warm. Furthermore, carry a pair of gloves to keep if you will be walking in cold areas.
You may also consider carrying a small emergency kit with things such as plasters or creams should you get stung by the wildlife. There are also a variety of gadgets you can take with you too. If you are walking an unfamiliar route then a mapping or GPS system will come in very handy in case you get lost. If the route will be over a few days, then a battery pack for your mobile phone will help in case of emergencies.
Taking part in a challenging walk can be exhilarating and rewarding, but don’t forget to take adequate rest during the training period. Do not push yourself beyond your limit and most of all, enjoy the experience!
Top Walking Challenges in the UK
We have picked out the best walking challenges taking place in 2020. We have lots more listings available, just click on the 'Walking Events' tab at the top of this page to find them.
Yorkshire 3 Peaks Challenge
Spend a weekend out in the Yorkshire countryside in September. Scaling 3 peaks in two days this is a difficult but very rewarding event. With some fantastic scenery including the limestone outcrops and unusual rock formations.
Charity Walk Course
Day 1: Lizard Point – Mullion
We meet mid-morning at our campsite near Mullion on the beautiful Lizard Peninsula. We help set up camp and, after a briefing and lunch, transfer (approx. 15 mins) to our start point. The most southerly point of mainland Britain, Lizard Point is a wonderful place to start our trek, and a very photogenic one! We set off west, around the headland towards beautiful Kynance Cove. To one side are colourful coastal grasslands and wildflowers, to the other the black cliffs and rocks, and the churning blue sea. Keep a look out for seals, and for the acrobatic choughs – red-legged crow-like birds which were extinct in England until being re-introduced here about ten years ago. Marconi conducted his ground-breaking radio communication experiments around here, and we pass his memorial as we continue north along the coast. Our cliff-top path undulates dramatically, with very few flat sections, but fabulous views all the way – sandy coves, rolling grassy fields, jagged islands jutting off the coast. We head inland to return to our campsite and enjoy our first evening under the Cornish stars. Night camp.
Trek approx 2-3 hours; 5 miles
There will be transport arranged to pick you up from Exeter St. David railway station if required.
Day 2: Mullion – Praa Sands
After a good breakfast, we set off again, crossing the fields to rejoin the coastal path. We soon drop steeply down to Mullion Cove and its traditional harbour, and then steeply back up again – this sets the pattern for the next few miles! Further along at Gunwalloe we see Church Cove’s ancient tiny church right on the beach. The golden sands stretch for several miles to the picturesque fishing village of Porthleven. This stretch of coastline was notorious for wrecks, and attracted its fair share of smugglers. We pass remains of old engine houses from Cornwall’s mining past as we continue along the coast to the golden beach at Praa Sands. Our campsite lies approx half a mile inland, and we’ll be very relieved to see it! Night camp.
Trek approx 6-8 hours / 12-13 miles
Day 3: Praa Sands – St Loy
We pack up camp, and set off to rejoin the coastal path. Our longest day awaits us, and while legs will no doubt be feeling the effects of our challenge so far, there are a few flattish sections which help to tick off today’s miles! We head along the cliff-tops, passing the pretty crescent-shaped beach of Kenneggy Sands on our way to the rugged rocks and hidden inlets of Prussia Cove, a notorious 18th-century smuggling point. As we pass Cudden Point our route turns northwest, and we head for Perran Sands, beyond which lies photogenic St Michael’s Mount. Leaving the cliffs and wilder scenery behind for a short stretch, we come to the busy area around Penzance, passing the causeway to the Mount and following the flat promenade around the bay towards Newlyn. Heading south, we then come to the ancient fishing village of Mousehole. Heading up steeply onto the cliffs, we should have spectacular views back over St Michael’s Mount all the way to the Lizard beyond. Continuing steeply up and down, our path takes us past the beautiful aquamarine waters of Lamorna Cove and steeply back up onto the cliffs the other side. We pass Tater Du lighthouse, Cornwall’s newest lighthouse, built after a shipwreck in 1963. We round Boscawen Point, a fabulous viewpoint, and can look down on boulder-strewn St Loy’s Cove below. Our camp lies on the far side of St Loy, a short distance from the coastal path. Night camp.
Trek approx 8-10 hours / 17-18 miles
Day 4: Lamorna – Land’s End
After packing up camp for the last time, we set off to rejoin the coastal path for our last day of trekking. The scenery on this last section is just as spectacular, as we plunge steeply downhill to hidden coves and rocky inlets before tackling the inevitable steep uphill stretch to the cliff-tops again. We pass Penberth Cove, overlooked by Treen on the hills inland, before heading round to Porthcurno Bay and the famous Minack Theatre. Porthcurno was the termination of the first under-sea telecommunication lines; the cable hut, built in 1872, still stands. While the higher ground in this area sees high winds, the coves and valleys are very sheltered and have a sub-tropical feel, while in the right weather the shallower water often appears a beautiful turquoise colour. We continue west to Gwennap Point – an important landmark for us as we then turn north towards Land’s End. This last section is just as demanding, but the scenery is again spectacular as we discover rocky cliffs with pounding surf around every corner. We eventually come to Land’s End and celebrate our achievements before saying our farewells and heading home!
Transport will be arranged to take you back to Penzance railway station, or the car-park at our first campsite, as required.
Trek approx 4-5 hours / 7-8 miles
Discover Adventure reserves the right to change the route or itinerary for safety reasons should local conditions dictate.