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Hilary has been mad for travel since hitchhiking to India in the late 1970s (via Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan). She currently works freelance on scientific expeditions (the next being on the Colombian Amazon with the Scientific Exploration Society in May 2017) and is a Fellow of the RGS. So far Hilary has worked on six continents and is planning Antarctica in 2018. She loves trekking, skiing, horse riding and cycling, as well as diving and sailing.

Specialist: Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan


Q: How did you fall into tour leading?

A: I have been a tour leader for Skiclub GB since 2006. I heard Jonny Bealby at the Adventure Film Festival in 2015 and was transfixed by his lecture. After chatting with him I knew I had to apply to tour lead for WF.

Q: What do you like most about tour leading?

A: Meeting such a wide variety of great people - both fellow travellers and the locals of the country visited.

Q: Where is your favourite part of the world?

A: Any Buddhist country, especially if it's mountainous and has horses!

Q: What has been your biggest travel highlight?

A: Living on the Falklands in 2016 - such incredible wildlife.

Q: What’s the one thing you couldn’t travel without?

A: A fairly new idea is my own small pillow - great on aircraft and beats lumpy pillows in some accommodation.

Q: Which famous person would you most like to travel with?

A: Gordon Buchanan, the BBC presenter. He has produced standout programmes on natural and social geography.

Q: Have you ever made a cultural faux pas?

A: Eating my first egg sandwich after two weeks hitching to India, then being very ill at the Golden Temple of Amritsar. I have to add that the local Sikhs were kindness itself in spite of my unfortunate behaviour!