08/05/2009 10:38 PM | Staff Report
Dubai: A trek in the Andes, following the ancient route of the Incas to Machu Picchu was a dream come true for a group of 13 adventurers from the Gulf. The hike included steep mountain climbs at high altitudes and freezing temperatures to reach the lost city of Incas.
Following an alternative route to the usual Inca Trail, the group were delighted to find that they escaped from the tourist crowds and were able to enjoy the peace and beauty of the mountains. Dubai-based Girish Shivanand said, "It was great to get away from the busy tourist route, all we met were local people and the trek was awesome!"
However, it wasn't just for fun. Between them, the group raised over Dh107,000 so far to help build a school in a Quilla Huata village at 3,500m above sea level.
In fact, the group felt that their visit to the school was the highlight of the trip, where they met the kids, parents, school director, social worker and community leaders.
But that wasn't all, they rolled their sleeves up and helped to paint the school bright yellow and blue, "What a great job" said Bronwyn Adams of their handy work!
The Abu Dhabi-based participant went on to say "Having seen the utter abject poverty in Quilla Huata, I'm very happy to have been able to contribute, in my small way, to uplifting the standard of living of these poor children, to some tiny extent"
Later this year, Gulf for Good is hosting another adventure exploring the Annapurna Circuit Trek in Nepal. Following an 11-day route in late October, this trek is on the highest mountains on the planet, traversing varied landscapes, natural wonders, past Sherpa villages and monasteries, and from temperate valleys to snow-filled areas.
Once again, no previous trekking experience is required to take part, but you will need to train seriously, as this is a tough but exhilarating route.
Luckily, Gulf for Good helps by giving training and fitness tips and organising regular sessions at Fitness First, treks to Jebel Hafeet or, when the weather is just too hot, climbing up and down the staircase of the 57-storey Harbour Hotel in Dubai Marina.
These sessions are a great way for participants to gauge their fitness and meet their fellow trekkers for the challenge.
The aim of fund-raiser is to build an orphanage in the Budhanil Kant district of Nepal, where many orphans and displaced children need homes, clothing, food and education.
Do your bit
Those interested in the Annapurna Circuit Trek or any of Gulf for Good's other Charity Challenges should call +971 4 3680222 or visit www.gulf4good.org