Start your journey to the Saimaa Lakes

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A rare chance to experience true adventure both at home and overseas.

Landmark is an expedition programme that takes British Exploring Society’s unique approach, based around Adventure, Knowledge and Personal Development, to the beautiful, vast natural forests and the wide waters of the Saimaa Lakes in Finland.

Before you join us on an overseas expedition, you will be invited to an Explorer Induction Weekend to meet the Leaders and Young Explorers joining you on expedition and an Explorer Training Expedition where you will build on existing outdoor skills and attend briefings designed to prepare you for life on expedition. It is expected that 30 Young Explorers will have the opportunity to go on the overseas expedition in the Saimaa Lakes, Finland.

Led by experts, the expedition has been designed to take you out of your comfort zone in a challenging yet safe environment, with a real focus on the skills and personal development you will gain from the experience. The safety and support of our explorers is the cornerstone on which we build and develop an expedition from conception through to departure and return.

The vast majority of young people return from our expeditions with a wealth of new-found practical skills, new friends-for-life and a real sense of personal development – all of which can have tangible benefits for the future.


  • Opening for 2022 applications soon
  • Age 16-25
  • Explorers to fundraise towards the charity
  • 3 weeks, 1st August - 21st August (dates TBC)
  • Saimaa Lakes, Finland
  • Visa not required for British passport holders
  • Some vaccinations are needed (further details given nearer the time)

Epic for personal development, both physical and mental

Young Explorer

What's Included?

  • An adventurous expedition programme built on 90 years of experience
  • UK Explorer Training Expedition to prepare you for your Overseas Expedition
  • British Exploring Society Expedition Certificate
  • John Muir Explorer Award Certificate
  • Support with your Duke of Edinburgh Award (residential only)
  • Participation in Next Steps reunion and reflection event
  • Lifetime membership of British Exploring Society
  • Support to continue your development journey after expedition

What's Involved?

  • Challenge yourself physically and mentally to try something new
  • Work towards a Fundraising Challenge to develop your confidence and gain invaluable skills to help you in adult life and employment
  • You will have the opportunity to explore the natural world, being mentored and supported by expert leaders, expedition medics, scientists and adventure professionals
  • Enjoy a diverse programme of scientific study and research and take part in creative media projects to document your expedition.
  • Learn how to live in the outdoors, camping in the wild using Trangia stoves
  • Build your character, resilience, determination and teamworking ability while exploring amazing wilderness

Join us. You are about to change your life

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Find out more about fundraising


It doesn't matter where your starting point is; you'll return with more confidence in your own abilities; greater resilience, determination and courage - and a sense of self-belief that will stay with you for life.

What's provided?

  • Insurance
  • Accommodation (tents) and food for the duration of the programme
  • Supervision from a qualified leadership team including Adventure Leaders, Social Leaders and Medical Leaders
  • Provision for the UK Training Expedition including expedition safety, first aid and navigation
  • Use of equipment necessary for the completion of the expedition including tents, cooking equipment, sleeping bags, compasses and navigation equipment and safety equipment as necessary
  • Waterproof trousers, waterproof jacket, fleece, walk boots and socks and large rucksack for the Explorer Training Expedition and Overseas Expedition
  • Flights and coach travel within Finland

What is not provided?

  • You will have to apply for/renew your passport where necessary; costs relating to this are not covered by the programme
  • In most cases, you will be expected to make your own way to designated meeting points (coach stops) at the start of each expedition. The costs associated with travel to meeting points will not be covered by the programme
  • Transport to the airport on the day of departure from the UK
  • Spending money – there will be little opportunity to spend money in Finland, however you should be aware that on the few occasions they may have access to local shops, any purchases made will be at your own expense
  • Personal kit except what has been previously outlined on this page


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