The 2023 Adventure Racing World Championships hosted by Expedition Africa will be held in the Kouga region in October next year.

The race will be the 18th Adventure Racing World Championships, and the first to be held on the African continent.

This announcement, which promises a huge boost for tourism in the Kouga and Eastern Cape regions, was made at a launch event held at Lombardini Game Farm on Tuesday evening. The launch was live streamed via facebook to a global audience

The 700km race will be the culmination of the 2023 Adventure Racing World Series, which unites in competition the world’s best endurance athletes at the premier expedition adventure races around the world. The Race Directors of Expedition Africa, Stephan and Heidi Muller, said at the launch that they are honoured and delighted to be chosen by the Adventure Racing World Series to host the most prestigious race in the adventure racing calendar.

“When we staged our first Expedition Africa 11 years ago, we never dreamed of this, and over those 10 races we have met wonderful athletes and teams from all around the world.”

“Our race is always as much about the people as the place, and it has become a global family and we want them all to share in our African World Championship in Kouga next year.

“It will be a celebration of all that is good about adventure racing; exploration, achievement, teamwork and connecting people from around the world.”

The first Expedition Africa was held in 2011 in the Western Cape and the race has visited most provinces of the country, as well as neighbouring Swaziland.

In 2019, the island of Rodrigues played host to Expedition Africa, and this year’s 10th anniversary race took place in the Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho.

During the launch at Lombardini Game Farm in Jeffreys Bay Stephan spoke about the exciting possibilities for the course in Kouga and the Eastern Cape, which he has already begun scouting and planning.

“For an Adventure Race of this magnitude we need to find an area which is far away from any human development, to ensure teams have a true wilderness experience and race in unique terrain. At the same time we have to be able to deliver fast and dependable logistics, transition areas that offer a welcome respite from the wild and accommodation with strong internet facilities for the world’s media,” said Stephan.

“The Eastern Cape has all that, and so much more. It has a comfortable climate in October, a UNESCO World Heritage site, world class game reserves, and a rich culture. It’s an exciting and diverse area, and the perfect location for an Adventure Racing World Championships.

“We believe the variety of landscapes, coastlines, wildlife and peoples which teams will experience in the Eastern Cape will make the race a fitting and memorable World Championship.”

He added, “We will do everything we can to make it the best ever.”

Teams will fly into Gqeberha, and it’s then a 90 minute transfer to the race venue. The Kouga Local Municipality and the Sarah Baartman Municipality will host the race and the venue will be the Cape St. Francis Resort.

The resort has world class facilities and a magnificent beach side location, and played host to Expedition Africa in 2017.

The resort’s owner Fasie Malherbe said, “Cape St Francis Resort being the host sponsor for the Adventure Racing World Championship 2023 re-enforces our commitment to bringing sports tourism to the Kouga region.”

“This event will be a big boost for this region as 600 competitors from all corners of the planet travel here with media, medics, volunteers, friends and family members. It’s been a privilege to work with our co-sponsors, Kouga Municipality, Sarah Baartman Municipality and Merrell to put this event together. However, none of this would be possible without Stephan and Heidi and their passion for adventure racing.”

Speaking at the event launch the Sarah Baartman Municipality Mayor, Deon de Vos said, “Sarah Baartman District is proud to be part of the Adventure Racing World Championships, which will be hosted in a true African style.

“Adventure awaits in our beautiful and diverse district, home to the 7 Wonders; The Addo Elephant Reserve, Baviaans and the Gamtoos Valley, Makhanda, Jeffreys Bay and St Francis, Karoo, the Sunshine Coast as well as Tsitsikamma and the Langkloof.”

Kouga Executive Mayor, Horatio Hendricks, welcomed the event and said, “With its international appeal, the Adventure Racing World Championships is a powerful marketing tool, which helps to keep our region on the tourist map.

“We are ready to welcome the teams to our shores in October next year before they tackle one of the toughest races ever and the Kouga Municipality wishes all the participants the best. We hope that the event – the first of many to come – will be an unforgettable experience for everyone involved.”

For more information about Expedition Africa and details of the 2023 Adventure Racing World Championships, including entry pricing visit and

Entries for will open on November 1, and places will be limited. Interested teams are advised to sign up for the ARWC 2023 mailing list on the website, and follow on Facebook and @expafrica on Instagram.