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A Cycling Adventure Around Italy

Published on: 27/02/23

The Adventure Fund

As fans of adventures and adventuring, we try to talk the talk AND walk the walk at Go Ape. We're dedicated to ensuring that every person has a great day at Go Ape, but we also want to support our team and help them keep adventuring!

Every year our co-owners have access to an "Adventure Fund", which employees can use to fund their own expeditions. Everyone can send an application for their proposed adventure, and funding is allocated.

Go Ape Battersea instructor Kshanika made great use of the fund when she set off on a cycling adventure around Sicily, Italy and possibly further afield.

My Journey with Go Ape

I have worked with Go Ape for over four years, starting as an instructor in 2018, Duty Manager in 2020 and, to my amazement, Activity Manager at Battersea in 2021.

I have learnt so much during my time with Go Ape. We share the same core values and I truly believe that we should all strive to do better and keep challenging ourselves throughout our lives. We only live once, so why not make the most of it whilst we can!

Certain that my commuter bike would only get me so far, I applied to the adventure fund to help me buy a new bike and was fortunate to receive some support from Go Ape. This was the biggest expense of my trip by far as I either had the necessary equipment or borrowed extras of friends and family. Travel costs also weren’t too steep as I chose to travel off season.

Kshanika's bike with paniers

tent and bike in park

The Inspiration

Italy has always been a country which I hold dear to my heart and a place I’ve dreamt of travelling. So, what better way to do it then from the comfort of my saddle, paniers laden with my tent, sleeping bag and everything I’d need for the adventure ahead.

Back in 2015, I cycled from London to Italy with my father, who is an avid cyclist and lover of the great outdoors. However, this time I decided to push myself to do it alone, with the hope that I could rise to the challenge and overcome everything that was thrown at me.

This year I turned 30, and to my surprise (I was dreading it) it has given me a whole new perspective, drive and zest for life. Since the start of this year, I have taken steps to overcome personal challenges with regards my mental health and continue to make progress in this area of my life. Before I started this journey, I would never have been brave enough to even consider doing such things! This is why I have chosen to take the leap, step outside of my comfort zone and set off to live my life adventurously in the deep unknown of this big bad world.

Kshanika in front of monument

Italian beach and coastline

An update from Sicily

Hello from Sicily!

I have been covering the kilometres around this gorgeous island for the past 4 weeks now!

It’s been an incredible journey full of ups and downs, in both the literal and metaphorical sense. Turns out Sicily is basically a massive mountain!

The island varies so much from region to region, whether that’s the landscape, culture, history, language, food. I have not held back in trying all the food I can – after all i’ve got to refuel after days of cycling!

I have met some wonderful people along the way, and I have constantly been reminded of the good of humanity by the small acts of kindness I’ve received in times of need.

Of course, there have been challenges along the way. Most recently, I was startled awake in the middle of the night in my tent by a massive thunderstorm. I’m not sure whether my obsessive checking of served me well in that situation but my tent and I survived the night and I learnt two valuable lessons: always check the forecast and to treat myself to a B&B from time to time.
I told myself I would be think about coming back to London when it started getting a little cooler over here… though locals say with that logic I’ll never leave the island!

In all likeliness I’ll be back in early December. There are still places I want to explore… but the season is very much over, and it’s proving tricky to find campsites that are open at this time of year.

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Woman in white t-shirt on zip line