Budget Day is here again, and with households suffering the biggest squeeze since the 1920s, Wednesday's Budget is unlikely to put a smile on many people's faces. With savings squashed and incomes dwindling, it's time to plan a quick getaway.
In a recent survey* Exodus, the UK’s leading adventure tour operator, has found that 50 per cent of respondents would rather take a holiday of a lifetime than splash out on a new kitchen, buy a sports car or blow out on a trip to Vegas.
With Exodus operating in 90 countries with over 450 tours from the Arctic to Antarctica and everywhere in between, why not take your savings off ice and take that trip of a lifetime? Here is a selection to choose from:
Everest North Col Expedition: a once in a lifetime, anniversary climb to the North Col of Everest, over 7,000m, led by Everest veteran Valerie Parkinson. 26 days from £6,599 including flights departing on the 20 April 2013. A first from Exodus, this trip gives travellers a unique opportunity to follow to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Tenzing and Hillary’s first ascent of Everest. Driving from Kathmandu across the Himalaya to Tibet, the group reaches Rongbuk monastery – the starting point of the trek to Everest Base Camp. After a few days of rest and acclimatisation, the group continue to Advanced Base Camp at 6,400m before continuing to the glorious North Col of Everest at 7,066m after further days of rest.
Central Africa Lowland Gorillas: head deep into the jungles of Africa where Lowland gorillas and Forest elephants cohabitate with Ba'Aka pygmies. 16 days from £4,599 including flights departing 7 July 2012, 6 October 2012 and 30 March 2013. With Exodus, travellers go deep into the heart of the Dark Continent, to areas where Lowland gorillas and Forest elephants outnumber tourists. Exodus use the tracks less-trodden to head deep into the jungles of the Congo Basin and track the only habituated family of Lowland gorillas in the world. It is an opportunity to also admire herds of Forest elephants, antelopes (including bongos and sitatungas), numerous birds and other wildlife. Travellers will also spend time with the local hunter-gatherer Ba'Aka pygmies and learn about their relationship with the forest while they go net-hunting.
Spitsbergen in Depth: An extended expedition encompassing Spitsbergen, the Seven Islands, Nordaustlandet, and smaller outlying islands. 13 days trip (ship-only) from £4,290 next departing 19 June and 11 July 2012.The most comprehensive voyage in Spitsbergen available - no other trip anywhere gives as much time in this intoxicating land of ice and tundra. With 24 hours of daylight, the chance of outstanding wildlife sightings is greatly increased. Wildlife is worked for in Spitsbergen; binoculars and scopes are permanently trained on the ice and glaciers searching for bears, walrus, foxes and birdlife. It is also worth remembering that a voyage to Spitsbergen is not just about the wildlife. The archipelago also offers excellent trekking, outstanding ice formations and usually very calm seas. The 19 June departure is a Photographic Special led by photographer Paul Goldstein.
Chulu Far East: a rare chance to tackle the 6,000m trekking peak in the Annapurnas, Nepal. A 21 days trip from £2,949 including flights departing 30 September, 21 October and 11 November 2012. For those looking for a rare and challenging experience of the Himalayas, look no further. This trek with Exodus starts by following the classic Annapurna Circuit trail ascending the Marsyangdi Valley. At Pisang the group leaves the main trail and heads off towards the Chulu Massif, rising above the Marsyangdi River - an area where huge glacial moraines form fantastic rock pillars. There they will set up a base camp and high camp before the summit attempt. Complete with climbing sherpas, the most fantastic views and a thrilling flight down the Kali Gandaki Valley to Pokhara, this is a trip guaranteed to dazzle.
In Search of the Snow Leopard: an exhilarating trip that combines trekking in isolated icy wilderness with a search for one of the world’s most enigmatic mammals. 15 days from £1,549 including flights to Delhi, India, departing 5 January and 20 February 2013. Snow Leopards are one of the world's most elusive mammals but in winter they descend from the high Himalayan peaks in search of food. This trip gives trekking enthusiasts a chance to experience a blend of trekking across beautiful isolated landscapes and rare high altitude wildlife. Exodus takes the group into the far north western part of India, to Ladakh (or Little Tibet). Cut off from the rest of the world in winter, the only way to reach it is a flight over the Himalaya. On most recent trip in 2012 two leopards were spotted by the group!
Cycling Drakensberg and Kruger: cycle through forests, waterfalls and canyons and combine superb mountainous scenery with the incredible wildlife of Kruger, South Africa, one of the largest game parks in the African continent. For wildlife lovers, this trip is a real treat. 14 days from £2,299 including flights departing 10 November 2012 and 23 February 2013.
Notes to editors*poll posted on Facebook to survey more than 20,000 Exodus fans.
Celebrating its 40th year, leading adventure tour operator Exodus has a vast range of adventure and activity holidays across seven continents, offering places as diverse and as exhilarating as Kilimanjaro, Machu Picchu, the Ice Hotel and Antarctica.
Whether it is solo travellers, couples, groups or families, Exodus offers an incredible choice of different trips for all ages.
Operating in 90 countries with over 500 tours, Exodus insists on low impact tourism and increasingly looks to bring benefit to local communities.
Activities on offer include walking, trekking, cycling, mountain biking, rafting, kayaking, caving, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and dogsledding as well as many many more…
For more information or to discuss a trip, please contact Paul Stokes, Carolyn van Vliet, Sara Whines or Natalie Amos at Four bgb on 0203 697 4200. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org