Leon McCarron
Leon McCarron Featured contributor London

What does adventure mean to you?

“There was a time when explorers traveled to mark the blank spots on the map—but now, in the digital age with fast, inexpensive transportation to once-hidden corners of our world, there’s far less call for flag-planting.

Instead, I see the modern frontier of adventure as storytelling; using immersive, adventurous travel to uncover new ideas. Adventure also applies on a smaller scale, one that’s accessible for all. It can be a daily practice in which we choose to do something different, something that creates a new experience—and that can happen as easily in London as it can in Ladakh. Adventure is everywhere, if we know where to look.”

Leon McCarron hikes into the mountains of Iran in early spring.
Leon McCarron hikes with one paddle in Iran, having lost an expensive collapsible carbon-fibre one.

Leon McCarron is a Northern Irish writer, filmmaker, and speaker. A Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and the absentee owner of an elderly Jordanian donkey, he specializes in immersive storytelling via long-distance, human-powered journeys.

He’s cycled from New York to Hong Kong, walked across China, trekked through the Empty Quarter desert in the Arabian Peninsula, and traveled along Iran’s longest river by inflatable kayak. In 2014, he rode a horse across Argentina, following the Santa Cruz river in the footsteps of Charles Darwin, and in 2016, he walked from Jerusalem to Mount Sinai to see another side of the Middle East.

The Middle East trip is the subject of his second book The Land Beyond, which was released in September 2017; his first book was an Amazon Top 10 Bestseller. Leon has also produced a TV series for National Geographic and made three independent films. In 2017, he was awarded the prestigious Neville Shulman Challenge Award to spend time with the Israelite Samaritans, one of the smallest and oldest ethno-religious groups in the world.

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