Celebrating 30 Years with 30 Iconic KE Holidays

 The Directors Cut - Find out what is NUMBER ONE!

KE Directors Tim & Glenn still regularly lead and recce new trips each year and whilst they may not have completed every holiday we offer, they have done a huge amount over the last 30 years. We asked them to pick their top 30 iconic trips from the period and list them in descending order.   Not an easy task and it took a lot of debate, but here it is.

Is there anything you think they missed? Let us know on Facebook what should have made the list...


Chamonix to Zermatt30. Chamonix to Zermatt (Alps)

We rode a different route to the trek but found some of the best single-track descents in the Alps.  The Haute Route just got faster with this 8 day technical bike ride for experienced riders looking to push their limits. Glenn


Madagascar29. Explore Madagascar

What a special country, made even better by an ascent of the Peak Boby, deserted national parks and exotic wildlife! Most people only take an overland tour of the world's 4th largest Island; our classic treks in the national parks make all the difference.  Tim


Morocco28. Around Toubkal Bike (Morocco)

8 days of hot climbs and great single track descents through Berber villages. We kept searching for the ultimate off road route since our very first bike traverse of the Atlas Mountains 15 years ago and this was the result. Glenn


Julian Alps27. Julian Alps Traverse (Slovenia)

Away from the crowds of the central Alps this ridge walk is superb and the scramble to the summit of Triglav, Slovenia's highest mountain, a fitting climax. Hut to hut trekking through the jagged limestone massif of the Julian Alps is like stepping back in time.  Tim


Kazakstan MB26. Kazakstan Bike

I enjoyed this epic mountain bike trip immensely when I first rode it in 1996 and carried on over the Torugart Pass into China and Pakistan - along with Tim we have now done it twice!  Due to political border problems we are not running this at the moment but hope to bring it back soon.  Glenn


Ski Touring with KE25. Jura Ski Tour (Alps)

This superb Grand Traverse when in prime condition has to be one of France's best kept cross-country ski secrets. A hidden classic just outside Geneva in one of the least explored pockets of the Alps! There are probably less than a hundred Brits who complete this full tour every year.  Tim


Rwenzori24. Rwenzori Mountains (Uganda)

Really hard underfoot and typically wet but the views over the Congo from Stanley & Baker are unforgettable. Following in the footsteps of Shipton and Tillman we first trekked and climbed here in 1991 with a memorable group who returned wetter and wiser! Tim


Mont Blanc with KE23. Mont Blanc (Alps)

I have climbed it 4 times now, and every time it was a different experience but things have definitely improved on the mountain with the new Gouter Refuge. Do not underestimate it though, it is Europe's highest peak and the best way to prepare is by acclimatising on Italy's Gran Paradiso before the ascent. Glenn


Mongolia22. Gobi to Ulaan Baatar (Mongolia)

In the late 90s we ran an epic journey, cycling across the steppes, often accompanied by wild horses. The nomadic Mongolians were so friendly that they insisted you drank and ate in their tents as we passed by, after so many vodkas riding your bike was not easy! Tim


Mont Blanc21. Tour de Mont Blanc Trek & Bike (Alps)

Always a favourite either by trek, mountain bike or road bike, I have to do it at least once a year!  The 12 day trek or 6 day bike journey that circuits Mont Blanc is blessed with the most breathtaking views in the Alps. I have ridden the circuit on my road bike in 24hrs!  Glenn


Peru with KE20. Titicaca to Machu Picchu (Peru)

High altitude mountain biking across the altiplano, dodging the llamas is as good as it gets and despite visiting Machu Picchu many times, it never disappoints. When we first rode this remote trail in 2010 we did not meet one other westerner for the first 7-days. Tim


Biking Guatemala with KE19. Bike Guatemala

I cannot wait to return to the single track of the most colourful and exciting country in Central America; there is no town on earth like Todos Santos. Definitely an adventure for experienced bikers.  Over the last decade this has become one of our most popular mountain bike trips.  Tim


Ecuador18. Cotopaxi (Ecuador)

More than 200 climbers packed the top hut on the Millennium Eve and most witnessed a special dawn from the summit the next morning. Ecuador has always been one of my favourite South American countries and the "Avenue of the Volcanoes" is a superb trekking area surrounded by unique peaks.  Tim


Leh with KE17. Leh to Manali Bike (India)

This trip has changed over the years, with slightly more tarmac but is still a superb ride with the highest road pass in the world - head spinning. I first rode this route in 1991 and cycled it again, 20 years later!  It is definitely slightly easier nowadays but still a challenge. Tim


Gran Paradiso with KE16. Gran Paradiso Trek (Alps)

I love the refuges and the Italian food, as this circuit trek takes us below hanging valleys, towering cliffs and alongside wild glaciers. Having trekked around and climbed Gran Paradiso, I can't help but rave about his superb 4000 metre summit - but I still have to ski it!  Glenn


Dolpo with KE15. Dolpo (Nepal)

A remote trek in the far west of Nepal, I was inspired by Peter Mathiessen's book "The Snow Leopard" and when I first trekked in the region it lived up to everything. It was a real adventure in a land that time has forgot, I suppose the Khumbu was like this once upon a time! Tim


Simmien Mountains SIM14. Simien Mountains (Ethiopia)

This country is full of surprises and history and the trekking as good as anywhere in Africa. As with many of our treks we like to climb the highest mountain in the area and the scramble to the summit of Ras Dashen rewards you with some of the most dramatic views imaginable. Tim


Mer and Kilimanjaro with KE13. Meru & Kili (Tanzania)

I really enjoyed trekking up Mount Meru for four days before moving on to Kili which we climbed by the Western Breach. Africa's highest mountain suffers from more acclimatisation problems than any other mountain in the world, climbing Meru first is a key to success. Glenn


Dead to Red Sea in Jordan12. Dead 2 Red (Jordan)

Biking from the Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth, to the Red Sea in Jordan has everything and this cycle ride never disappoints. Probably the hardest day on the trip though is off the bike, when we spend a day on foot exploring the magnificent maze of the ancient city of Petra. Tim


Classic Hauter Route with KE11. Classic Haute Route (Alps)

You cannot beat the diversity of the Alpine scenery and the cultural influence of France, Italy and Switzerland. This has to be the ultimate high Alpine classic trek that equals anything in the Himalaya. The chain of mountain huts have to be some of the best in the world. Glenn


The Tesu Lapcha Nepal with KE10. The Tesi Lapcha (Nepal)

I will never forget the traverse from the high Rowaling Valley crossing the Tesi Lapcha into the Khumbu that I did in the late 1980s. This superb high mountain traverse is now an established Nepalese classic that takes in the two challenging peaks of Ramdung (5925m) and Parchemo (6187m). Tim


GR20 with KE9. GR20 (Corsica)

Outside the main Alps this is the best high mountain walk in Europe. A mixture of French and Corsican culture, some easy scrambling, very craggy mountains with great views of the sea. Beware of the mountain huts and locals though, they are both not for the feint hearted.  Glenn


Skiing the Kings Trail with KE8. Ski the Kings Trail (Sweden)

Hut to hut Nordic ski tour north of the Arctic Circle made extra special by husky dog support and the spectacular northern lights. The huts on this remote tour are fantastic, whilst it may be -20C outside, inside they are all really cosy with wood burners and some even have saunas attached. Tim


Everest the hard way with KE7. Everest the Hard Way (Nepal)

The most exciting trek to Everest base camp is via the Renjo La, Cho La and Kongma La - a twist on the classic Khumbu trek. Whilst on the way into base camp we stay as high and remote as possible and on the return to Namche Bazaar we join all the fun of the main tourist trail. Glenn


Annapurna Bike with KE6. Annapurna Circuit Bike (Nepal)

I recently mountain biked the circuit which is now rideable with new tracks well beyond Manang. The final push and descent over the Thorung La is epic. But the journey does not finish there; the ride all the way down to Beni, alongside the roaring Kali Gandaki, is so good you do not want it to end. Tim


Annapurna Trek with KE5. Annapurna Circuit Trek (Nepal)

One of my first treks when I climbed Chulu East in the mid 1980s, I've done it twice but still have to do it on a mountain bike. There is a new jeep track encroaching at either end of the trek but the magnificent mountain scenery has not changed, and new walking routes avoid this. Still in the top 5 world walks. Glenn


Bhutan by Bike with KE4. Bhutan Bike Traverse

Glenn first cycled this classic after trekking to Lunana in the early 1990s and since then we have both ridden this route three times each! There can not be a better cycling journey in the world, 15500 metres of ascent and 18200 metres of descent over 780 kms and the only place in Asia were the local dogs just wag their tail at you. Tim


Pakistan with KE3. Gondoro La & K2 (Pakistan)

The classic trek to K2 up and down the Baltoro Glacier was our first ever KE trip, but the later circuit route which climbs over the hidden Gondoro La has to be on our top 3 classics. The Karakoram Mountains are dominated by their huge rock spires and inhabited by the friendliest people on earth.  Tim & Glenn


Lunana Bhutan with KE2. Lunana (Bhutan)

The kingdom's ultimate trek, and my favourite Himalaya trek by a long way. High, tough, remote, adventurous - perfect. Bhutan may not be the cheapest country to trek in, with its high government led rates but you can be assured that they have got the right system, and it is well worth the extra expense.  Glenn


1. Snow Lake (Pakistan)

This iconic journey had to be number one, the most spectacular scenery on the planet, this epic trek connects Baltistan to Hunza via the Biafo and Hispar Glaciers across the main Karakoram Range. Shipton and Tillman called it "Blank on the Map".One of the few trips where our local Balti porters are just as excited as us to finally end up in Hunza. The Karakoram has suffered from political problems lately but we are sure it will soon be back on the main trekking map. Tim and Glenn

Snow Lake Pakistan with KE

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