To inspire everyone who loves walking and raising funds for charity, we set an ambitious challenge for 2021. Our plan is to encourage TEN’s supporters to virtually walk, jog or cycle along the Via Egnatia— the ancient, Roman road constructed by Gnaeus Egnatius, the Roman proconsul of Macedonia, who ordered its construction in the 2nd century BC from Durrës (Albania) through North Macedonia and on to Thessaloniki (Greece). The Via Egnatia united the Roman colonies of the Southern Balkans and eventually became the vital Silk Road between Europe and Asia.
The whole walk is divided into 10 stages covering 300 miles (equivalent to 600,000 steps!) following several stretches of the original paved highway. The Via Egnatia was built as a coast to coast route that linked the Adriatic with the Aegian and thereby avoiding a long and perilous sea journey. The Via Egnatia was used for journeys between Rome in Italy and the ancient Byzantium capital of (Istanbul) in modern-day Turkey. It was the ‘motorway’ of its day that enabled commerce, military power and messengers to travel unhindered. The route was frequently used by legions of Roman soldiers, Balkan traders, New Testament apostles, and centuries later by medieval Crusaders to and from the Holy Land.
HOW DO I TAKE PART?
Having first registered with TEN for the Via Egnatia Challenge and donated your £5 starter with Give.Net, you commence the first stage to walk the virtual 28 miles from Durrës, Albania inland to Peqin. The mileage can be accumulated over several days or even weeks as an individual, a couple, a family or a walking group. As a confirmed participant, you will receive a welcome pack with information about your first stage (Peqin Challenge) and details of TEN’s nearest partners. On completion, you may wish to proceed to the next stage (Elbasan Challenge). Let us know and you will receive a second welcome pack to introduce you to the local area, its history and people. Each month we want you to tell us how many miles you or your group have covered while walking in your neighbourhood (maybe with your dog), rambling through the local countryside or following your favourite trails. In doing so, you will track the equivalent miles/steps on our Via Egnatia chart. When you complete your virtual stage challenge – please let us know! Cyclists are also welcome to follow the route. The individual or group latest totals of your current challenge will be updated on this page at www.ten-uk.org/walks unless you prefer to be anonymous.