The Long Walk is the annual coast-to-coast charity hike across the beautiful, sub-tropical island of Gran Canaria. We raise funds for our local causes and charitable organisations on the island, helping those we can to overcome challenges. The event itself also provides unparalleled opportunities for team building, personal development and direct community action while negotiating a great sub-tropical wilderness in a safe and motivating environment.
This walk simply demonstrates that together we can all cross mountains, one step at a time.
Individuals and local businesses join us for some or all of the walk, spearheaded by founding participants TUI Travel, The Canary News, Love Gran Canaria, Blue Explorers Dive Centre, 45photos, Ary Traduciones and many others who have joined us along the way like Music Hall Tavern, Spirit of The Sea, Sparkles Showbar,Personal Trainer Lilly Rikhter, Gran Canaria Natural & Active and members of the Gran Canaria Walking Festival. This is much more than hiking!
- Get people talking about surviving and overcoming challenges of all kinds, particularly serious illness like breast cancer and prostate cancer.
- To show that together we can cross mountains, one step at a time.
- Showcasing the wild, natural beauty of the island of Gran Canaria.
- Building teams and relationships that can last a lifetime
- Getting active in a way that is open to every body, of every age.
- To raise much needed funds and awareness for very worthy local causes, while encouraging people of all ages to challenge themselves while walking over one of the most beautiful sub-tropical islands in the world.
- Changing Lives for the better and encouraging self belief and team spirit.
- To nurture community and collaboration between residents, visitors and natives on Gran Canaria
Yes Together We Can!
Now in our ninth year, The Long Walk travels coast-to-coast across the subtropical island of Gran Canaria, crossing its highest peak, to help inspire others to raise funds and awareness for worthy local causes, supporting sufferers, and importantly their closest family members, in understanding how to survive and conquer serious illness and life challenges affecting men, women and children of every age.
Together we can do this!
We are very proud, once more, to be joined by adventurers from the resident English speaking community, visitors and various businesses to raise funds and awareness for these most worthy causes.
We encourage participation in as many ways as possible, whether that is sharing information, collecting sponsorship, promoting involvement or walking with us for the entire 3 day journey, just one day, a part of one day or simply cheering us on at the finish line.
We can´t do this without you.
Overcome The Challenge
We want to highlight the struggle faced by anyone fighting an uphill battle, or who has ever been diagnosed with a life threatening illness, and the importance of supporting them as a community, as well as those nearest to them, helping them overcome their own personal mountains or challenges.
YOU are not alone.
THE CANARIAN BREAST CANCER ASSOCIATION (ACCM)
ACCM’s role is pivotal as a complimentary service to medical treatment. They not only deal with educating huge amounts of people with messages about prevention and early detection, but spend their very limited resources on trying to ensure the psychological and sociological needs of patients, and those closest to them, are met with love, support and understanding. They work to ensure comprehension, acceptance of and recovery from cancer are all approached with the positive can-do attitude so necessary to help healing both physically and mentally.
ACCM are the only organisation of their type in the Canary Islands whose philosophy is comparable in many ways with the UKs much, much better funded Macmillan trust. They really need our help to continue to grow their offering.
ACCM provides support to sufferers and their families as well as lectures in schools to help bring the issue to young people while at the same time promoting volunteerism, which is an important resource for the Association. They also offer bio-psycho-social care to patients and their families, warn about the importance of early detection of breast cancer and the importance of an annual mammogram.
The ACCM works to prevent social exclusion of women diagnosed with breast disease and cancer survivors, because sometimes they find their medical condition can lead to unpleasant situations in their daily lives.
We are walking over a mountain to support Breast Cancer sufferers. We want you to sponsor us, donate or participate, and we want you to join us.
THE PROGRAM 2020
From lighthouse to lighthouse "The Pilgrims' Way"
“The Long Walkers" meet at the lighthouse at Sardina del Norte on the north-east coast of Gran Canaria.
The old lighthouse at Sardina del Norte, on the Gáldar coast, to the northeast of Gran Canaria, flashed its first beam over this corner of the Atlantic on 15th February 1891. The current structure, built on the same site, replacing the former one there in 1986, took over the task of guarding the sublime rocky coastline where the vigorous waves come crashing in almost at slow motion speed, doubtless tired after their long oceanic voyage.
The long walk will take them to the ancient native island capital of Gáldar and the Church of Santiago de los Caballeros. The route for the first day will continue all the way up to Cruz de Tejeda, following the famous Camino de Santiago (Ruta Jacobea).
The last big climb to the summit and down into a tranquil valley
After a breakfast we begin our ascent to Pico de Las Nieves, climbing to the highest summit on Gran Canaria. Then a celebratory lunch among the clouds, before we descend via one of the most epic routes all the way to Tunte.
In 2011 an initiative from Gran Canaria's local English-language newspaper The Canary News, Views & Sunshine, El Periódico Inglés de Gran Canaria, led to a successful campaign to raise money for the local breast cancer association. Various readers from the community got involved and were inspired to create events and performances to encourage fundraising for this very worthy cause. That year we exceeded our 1000€ target, donating more than 20,000€ to the ACCM at time when they were most in need.
The Long Walk was first founded in 2012 to support local fundraising activities among the community in Puerto Rico, bringing together two adventurous souls, Edward Timon & Sanna Nevalainen, after they made a promise to walk from Puerto Rico, on the south coast, to the famous land mark Roque Nublo, in the centre of the island, if the Puerto Rico fundraisers were able to exceed their target one more time, furthermore offering to double the distance and walk to the island's opposite coast, and the capital Las Palmas, if they managed to raise 2,000€ or more.
With the help of the English newspaper, and the support of English speakers on Gran Canaria, these adventurers left Puerto Rico with 7 others who escorted them through the night to the mountain village of Soria, and the duo finally made it to Roque Nublo, having walked nearly 50km straight, after 18 hours of roadways, trails and rough terrain. They fell in love.
The outstanding TUI Travel team, led by Mr Paul Gilliam, joined the effort the following year, as part of their annual fundraising efforts in their work on Gran Canaria to complete the promise of a coast to coast walk. Under TUI´s leadership, guidance and commitment the TUI team, and their area manager for The Canaries, Niel Heyhoe,walked with us from Maspalomas to Las Palmas, in an inspirational event that raised thousands of euros.
Several other participants joined The Long Walk for the rest of the hike coast-to-coast, including Paul and TUI's then destination services manager Jane Rasmussen, not only making it to the summit of the island but then back down the other side to the capital Las Palmas for a celebration at The British Club of Las Palmas.
Since then the event has grown from strength to strength, with a new route every year, from the north to the south, finishing at the Dunes of Maspalomas and in 2018 arrived to where this all started, at The Pub in Puerto Rico. There the Long Walkers were met by supporters and sponsors, local politicians as well as business people of every nationality.
A big shout out should go to some our most persistent supporters and participants Blue Explorers Dive centres have sent an epic threesome every year to join us every step of the way, Julia, David & Sabrina, Afrikat have never missed an opportunity to support us financially and emotionally, Music Hall Tavern have always been eager to don a posh frock in our honour, as have Sparkles Showbar, and the Spirit of The Sea have consistently shown a spirit of solidarity with our cause. Some of TUIs finest managers and those climbing the ladders of success have returned to us year after year, notably Celina proving there is nothing dull about Belgian girls and Mr Michael Wheatly and of course the indomitable Andy Joyce, two times Long Walker... there are many others besides...
The Long Walk and associated events, over the last eight years, including the wonderfully successful Caminata Contra El Cancer, in Maspalomas and Puerto Rico Walk, have led to more than €100,000 in donations directly to local charities, and in particular the local breast cancer association, and this in turn has spawned many other fund raising events throughout the English speaking community.
In 2017 we widened our scope, exploring the creation an official association to continue this great work and looking to include various local charities in our event. We hope you will join us for 2020.
Video from The Long Walk 2015
Video from The Long Walk 2014
THINK PINK FOR OCTOBER!
HOW CAN I PARTICIPATE
There are a number of ways you can take part. If you want to register for The Long Walk we require you to find a minimum of 200€ to cover accommodation, food and insurance. This must be paid before we can officially recognise you as a prospective Long Walker.
Thereafter we ask you to aim to raise as much money as you can, by letting the world know that you plan to walk over a mountain, through a wilderness, from one side of an island to another.
Your target is 1000€, but we are not so strict on this, whether you raise more or less than that figure we know that you will have positively changed the world just by joining us on our journey. Every penny you raise is to add directly to the donation going to the charities, we want to ensure that as many people as possible know about your epic undertaking and commit to supporting the effort.
The Long Walk ( 3 Days ) : per person - This initial 200€ will need to be paid prior to confirmation. You can have your accommodation sponsored for you to walk, but this needs to be clearly stated to the sponsor.
As well as walking you can become an ambassador for the event: donate, find sponsors, help to promote the event, meet us at the various points along the route to cheer us on and of course buy one of the event T-shirts, 100% of the profits from which go directly to the charities
A great way to join in is to get yourself sponsored to do a section of The Long Walk, even if you can't do all three days. Every leg of the way, we travel through some of the most epic unspoiled wilderness in the world. If you think this is something you might like to do, get in touch and we can help you plan for it.