A former officer in the Parachute Regiment, Levison Wood is clearly no stranger to danger, nor fearful of a challenge! Best known for his year-long trek along the entire length of the River Nile in 2013, Levison’s latest challenge sees him attempting another expedition-first, by walking the complete length of the Himalayas. The young, and annoyingly talented, writer, photographer and film-maker, is every bit the dynamic, modern-day explorer and has even been dubbed as ‘ten times tougher than Bear Grylls’, which is fairly remarkable given his age of thirty-three.
A critically acclaimed British explorer, with a bestselling book and successful documentary already under his travel belt, he has an appetite for extraordinary physical and visual feats — and he is most definitely someone whom we should celebrate. Filmed largely by himself, the stunning scenery and punishing terrain is authentically captured, offering a refreshingly raw insight into the remote and perilous landscape of the Himalayas. Along with the physical struggle of altitude sickness, at 5,000 metres, which pushes Levison to his physical limits, he contends with the danger of crossing disputed lands and meets fascinating people along the way. From monks, local guides and nomadic tribes, to integrating with the local way of life through yak-herding with the Wakhi Tribe, eating sheep eyeballs and meeting local Shamans – there are plenty of colourful moments along the way. Having started in Afghanistan and trekked the 1,700 gruelling miles across the ‘roof of the world’, Levison takes an astounding four-million steps to bring to our screens a lofty and striking visual piece of adventure journalism — one which serves to highlight the dramatic beauty and natural power of plate-tectonics.
For those wishing to experience the stunning scenery and serenity of the footfills of the Himalayas, Elegant Resorts offers a stay at the luxurious Ananda In The Himalayas, in India — a destination spa retreat that offers a selection of rewarding hiking and soft adventure pursuits, in addition to traditional Ayurvedic medicine, meditation and yoga — all without the level of danger and intensity encountered by Levison! Located close to the spiritual town of Rishikesh, guests can visit the holy River Ganges, watch local religious ceremonies by candlelight, or trek to see the spectacular snow-capped Himalayan Ranges and observe incredible wildlife — from birds of prey to wild leopards. Visitors are simply spoilt with an abundance of activities and superb, world-class facilities. From lofty and remote safari adventures, white-water rafting and a stroll around the six-hole golf course, to taking part in meaningful wellness and healing programmes.
For those seeking a specific wellness package, such as a Weight Management programme or an invigorating New Year Detox course, Ananda In The Himalayas boasts an extensive menu to choose from. Perhaps you wish to simply sample one of their shorter ‘Getaway Packages’, such as the three-night ‘Himalayan Bliss’, which combines ancient and contemporary therapies with body treatments, delectable spa cuisine, plus exhilarating activities? For busy couples, there is a new ‘Couples Connect’ programme with dedicated couple’s spa suite and focus on relaxation time, together. There are, of course, visiting Masters, where special workshops and private sessions can be arranged with experts from many fields of wellbeing. Teachers, therapists, healers, Ayurvedic doctors and guides visit from all over the world in order to share the ethos behind their individual disciplines. Retreats, such as ‘Healing and Self Empowerment’ or ‘Spiritual Healing’, take place on set dates throughout the year, during which guests can learn and benefit from new techniques and thought-provoking lectures. Visiting Masters for early 2016 include Roma Singh and Preeti Sethi (during February) or Richard Curral for a ‘Spiritual Healing’ retreat in March.
Should you ache to take up a real challenge in 2016, or simply wish to combine a little spa and relaxation time within a luxurious palace retreat, our team of expert Travel Consultants can create your Indian odyssey. Having recently returned from a trip to India, Myra Jones and Alison Lester will be delighted to discuss their personal adventures in order to inspire your trip — from dramatic desertscapes and bustling modern cities, to spiritual Varanasi and the clean-air and breathtaking scenery of the mighty Himalayas, India is a vast and vibrant land to discover. With mesmerising natural beauty and a fascinating culture, there is much to savour and excite the senses and a rejuvenating spa retreat might just be the tonic, following a busy travel itinerary!
Please call our expert Travel Consultants on 01244 897 555 in order to create your Indian adventure, or to simply learn more about the tailored packages available at Ananda In The Himalayas.