Why choose Gapforce?

At Gapforce, we are passionate about travel and the positive impact it has on young people’s outlook and future prospects. Our mission is to help people become global citizens through authentic, socially and environmentally responsible travel experiences which aid self-discovery and personal development.

Through our range of school group trips, gap year programs, training courses and internships, we aim to provide our participants with a unique collection of experiences designed for different stages of life.



We are committed to exert a positive impact on the regions, countries and communities which we visit. For us it is paramount that the local organisations and communities benefit from our cooperation by working with trusted local businesses and project partners who align with our sustainability objectives.

Ethical Impact

We are passionate about travel and the positive impact it has on young people’s outlook and future prospects. Our mission is to help people become global citizens through authentic, socially and environmentally responsible travel experiences which aid self-discovery and personal development.

As a small team, we are committed to providing a highly personalised service from your initial contact right through to your chosen adventure. We achieve this through our dedicated team of program leaders and support staff, all of whom are passionate travellers united by a common purpose to help young people explore the world.


Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

South America Explorer honest review

This is the trip if you would like to experience every activity there is to offer from Peru and Ecuador. It is well thought and well planned with an intense week always followed by a relaxing week.

Prior to the adventure it has been easy to contact and seek help from gap force and the guides we had during the trip have been more than kind and helpful.

Overall, I enjoyed the trip and am glad that I have been exposed to such a different part of the world and culture. However, I do hope that we could’ve gone to more countries and deeper into the Amazon rainforest or at least the galapogas islands. I guess South America is too big for a single trip, even if it’s 7 weeks long.

  • Wide range of activities
  • Kind and caring guides
  • Reasonable intensity
  • Not the best for foodies
  • Lacking galapogas
  • only limited to Peru and Ecuador
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program


it’s was so much fun, met great people and saw incredible sites, i definitely recommend it for anyone not sure about how to spend their gap year. at first i was unsure of if i would enjoy it or not but then i turned out to love it and had a blast. it was great being able to see so many majors cities in such a short periods of time while still getting to experience each one thoroughly. trying all the different foods and meeting locals from each country was my favorite part, also the trains make traveling easy

  • made friends
  • saw great places
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

South America

A variety of lots of different activities and places which made it unique. We toured a lot of different cities and town and did new activities everyday and all the activities were fun and interesting. We also had the freedom to choose wether we wanted to do everything or not and also we visited a lot of different activities places and we also had enough free time to explore on our own which I really liked but at the same time there was always something fun to do everyday the was planned that we did as a group.

  • Fun
  • Adventure
  • Expirience
  • Hotel problems
  • Food not always good
  • Long travel
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing Experience in South America

I had the most amazing experience of my life on this trip. Even though parts of the actual trip were slightly different from the itinerary, such as activities in Tamandua the Jungle Retreat, we still had a really fun time, and generally seeing all of the amazing sites. Occasionally, we had issues with our accommodation being unavailable through the hotels fault not Gapforce’s, and we ended up staying in different places which was a hassle. However the amazing, fun guides we had sorted it out as quick as they could, and Leaders like Colin and Raul also made sure we were safe. In places such as Quito where it’s more dangerous, they were well knowledgeable and made us as safe as possible. Money belts are really important so defenitely bring one!

  • The friends you make
  • Amazing views
  • Plenty of downtime especially the second half of the trip
  • A lot of moving thorough different hostels
  • Difficult treks
  • A lack of food variety at times
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

South America Explorer

The South American Explorer has been an amazing experience a memory that I will remember for life. I have had highs and lows on this trip. The highs are getting to the top of Machu Picchu. Another high is Yanacocha. I had amazing time there and wanted it to carry on. A low is getting altitude sickness for both of the treks. Another low would be having my biking accident in Banos. In this experience I have made friends for on this trip. This trip as been the best to end a year of traveling around the world.

  • Machu Picchu
  • Yanacocha
  • Seeing different culture
  • Tamandua food
  • My bike accident
  • Saying goodbye to everyone


Displaying 1 - 9 of 16

Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Martha Graham Fitzpatrick

Martha is passionate about the outdoors, spending her free time hiking, climbing or camping in the mountains of Ireland and abroad.


Why did you choose this program?

I always knew I wanted a career in the outdoors and something I could travel with and meet interesting people. I found this course, and after researching similar training programmes I decided this was best for me. The opportunity to live and learn in the jungle was a once in a lifetime opportunity and this course appeared to be the most intense and rewarding in terms of qualifications and experience gained.

What did your program provider (or university) assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

Gapforce organise everything apart from flights, insurance and kit. However, instructors are always there to answer any questions before you leave, whether it’s about equipment, physical or mental preparation - they are all very experienced and knowledgeable. During the course we help organise transport, meals and logistics to gain experience - this is what you would be doing as an expedition leader.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

Give it your all. Even if you’re really struggling in the moment you have to appreciate where you are and what you’re doing…it’s not every day you’re lugging 30kg through the jungle in Central America! Your teammates are there to support you, everyone is in the same boat. Be open to all new experiences, even if it’s tough at first, us humans adapt very quickly. Also, foot care! (Foot rot is not a pleasant experience)

What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?

You will spend about 7 days in the jungle at a time, going back into town for a few days to rest, clean everything and restock on food. In the jungle you will typically get up at 7am (usually awake earlier if there’s howler monkeys around) and have breakfast. The leader of the day will give a briefing to explain the plan. Lessons will run up until lunch where you will do some housekeeping eg. collect firewood, make amendments to camp. Afterwards you will have more lessons/ activities until around 4pm. Unless you’re on the dinner team this is usually a bit of free time. You will wash in the river and clean your clothes and kit. I usually spent time practicing some knots, reading or preparing for my next leader day. It gets dark at around 6pm so we usually headed to bed after dinner at around 8 or 9pm…you’ll need your rest!

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it? How did your views on the issue change?

As the start date approached I got pretty nervous! I had a lot of self doubt and thoughts like ‘What if I’m totally inexperienced compared to everyone?’, ‘Am I fit enough?’, ‘Will people take me seriously as a leader?’. But when I arrived in Wales I quickly realised I had nothing to worry about. Even after the first week together you get to know everyone very well and quickly become a team. I did struggle at points and there were moments where I was less experienced than others, but you’re there to learn. I soon became a lot more confident as a leader, the instructors really help you figure out what sort of leader you are and you will find your flow! In terms of going abroad, I was more excited than nervous. The language barrier was probably the biggest issue but you adapt very quickly and learn a bit of Spanish during the course. After the course finished I even decided to stick around and travel through Central America solo, something I never would have had the confidence to do before.

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Ben Hunter

Job Title
Program Advisor & Business Development Coordinator
Ben has worked in the outdoor and travel industry for several years. A passionate advocate of outdoor adventures and the joys of exploring remote places, his current focus is on developing new trips and expeditions to support the existing range of exciting programmes already offered by Gapforce.
Ben H.

What is your favorite travel memory?

It's hard to pick just one! Spending time with the Bribri tribe in Costa Rica and crossing the border into Panama on a multi-day trek was really special. Exploring the remote border country with my friends and our local guide was the definition of adventure! Spotting snakes, crossing rivers, finding campsites and sleeping in hammocks was epic. The excitement of forging a path through the dense jungle with my machete will always stay with me.

Oh, and snorkeling in the Bahamas was pretty good as well! Not to mention walking along the Great Wall of China...

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

I have developed a growing respect and appreciation of the benefits of group travel experiences. For those who are dying to travel and see the world, but have not been away from home before, travelling alone can be daunting to say the least. Planning the itinerary of a trip can at times be brilliant, as you look forward to your adventures, but can also be quite tricky, with the duration of your trip, knowing where to start, budgeting and packing in as much as possible being common headaches. That's why companies like Gapforce are so great!

Our adventure travel trips are led by experienced and qualified Gapforce Expedition Leaders who have worked in all four corners of the globe. The itineraries are planned and the accommodation is booked - all you need to do is get on the plane and let the adventure begin!

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

Travelling and getting out of your comfort zone is a fantastic way to experience new things and gain different a different perspective on life. I guarantee that all our participants will be different people once they've returned home after joining us on one of our many programs.

One of the participants on our flagship Expedition Leader Training program was so inspired by the medical and first aid training he received that, after finishing the program, he went off to university to train as a Paramedic. Joining a Gapforce trip will not only inspire you too see more of the world, it may also fast-track your career.

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

As an adventure lover and someone who loves multi-day treks I'd have so say our programs in Nepal and South America. Trekking to Everest Base Camp is a once in a lifetime opportunity and should never be turned down! The Salkantay trek to the historic ruins of Machu Picchu should also be on any budding explorers bucket list, and we've not even mentioned the amazing Galápagos Islands or the lush and vibrant Amazon jungle. Both destinations have everything you could possible need when planning your dream adventure travel trip!

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

All the staff at Gapforce have either travelled with us on our range of programs or are graduates of our Expedition Leader Training course. We are a small and close-knit team with a clear focus on providing the best and most exciting adventure travel experiences. If you ask us a question about any of our trips we'll know the answer, because we've been there!

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

Everyone at Gapforce is committed to providing incredible and life-changing travel experiences. With continued dedication and hard work, we are exceptionally proud of our exciting range of programs and the great feedback we so often receive. Our industry leading expeditions and adventure travel trips have been running around the world since 1989 - we have no plans to stop any time soon!

Professional Associations

Gap Year Association Logo
USA Gap Year Fairs Logo