These Are the 10 Most EPIC Endurance and Fitness Events in the World

These Are the 10 Most EPIC Endurance and Fitness Events in the World
Presented by Spartan Training®

If you're an adrenaline junkie, an outdoor enthusiast, or just a general fitness fiend, chances are you've tried a Spartan obstacle course race, or even a few. The chances are equally as good that you became hooked after your first race. Now, naturally, you want more. You want to see just how far, how fast, and how deep you can push your fear, pain, and endurance threshold while having a hell of a good time. We've got you covered in every corner of the globe.

We took a long, hard look at every brand, event, and sport across the entire Spartan ecosystem, from Spartan and Tough Mudder obstacle course races to Peak endurance events to extreme hiking, mountain biking, paddle boarding, trail running, and more. After analyzing terrain and elevation gain, weather and climate, mileage and duration, historical significance, mental demand, and the surrounding area and cultural experiences, our team selected the world's 10 most incredible, life-changing events. 

Related: 8 Endurance Brands and Sports That Every Adventure Junkie NEEDS to Try

If you are an endurance addict, and you love to travel the world, these should ALL be on your bucket list. And if you're an Unbreakable Pass holder, you'll unlock exclusive access to every single one of these events — no matter where or when they take place.  

The greatest adventures of your life are out there for the taking, so what are you waiting for? Here's everything you need to know to get started. 

The 10 Most Epic Endurance Events in the World

1. The Winter Death Race

The Spartan Death Race is widely regarded as one of the world's hardest events to complete, with just 10 percent of racers actually completing it within the past 10 years. With iterations in both the summer and winter, the Death Race occurs at Riverside Farm, Spartan CEO Joe De Sena's expansive property in Pittsfield, Vermont. When participants arrive, they are completely unaware of when the race will begin, nor what they will have to endure, nor for how long it will last. They are even required to sign a waiver acknowledging that they may legitimately die.

The Summer Death Race is absolutely brutal (check out this inside look at the 2022 event's itinerary), but the biting, unrelenting cold of a Vermont winter adds the most sinister extra element of grit to this tortuous — yet transformative — experience. If you make it out of this one alive, you'll be forever bonded to the pack of battle-hardened Spartans with which you weathered the storm. 

2. The Spartan Trail World Championship: Patagonia Run

The Patagonia Run is Latin America's largest and most distinguished ultrarunning event, taken on by thousands of trail-running aficionados in the past decade. Part of the Spartan Trail World Championship series, the four-day festival weaves runners through the stunning mountain village of San Martin de los Andes with seven distances, from 10K to 100-milers. Though mountainous, the course is considered low on the technicality scale, and you'll enjoy pleasantly-crisp autumn air as you traverse this unforgettable Argentinian landscape. 

Related: Every Spartan Trail Race on the U.S. Schedule: Dates, Details, and More

3. Molokai 2 Oahu Paddleboard World Championships (M2O)

Molokai-2-O'ahu began in 1997 with a Hawaiian paddleboarding race from Kalua Koi on Molokai to the beach at the Maunalua Bay Beach Park, across the Ka'iwi Channel (which plunges to depths up to 2,300 feet). It brought life to an otherwise flat summer surf, and was instantly a hit. The world's first and most challenging event of its kind, the 32-mile M2O Paddleboard World Championship events now sell out annually, attracting prone and stand-up paddleboarding athletes from all over the world.

4. HIGHLANDER: Lake District, United Kingdom

HIGHLANDER is deemed "the adventure of a lifetime" because it takes nature lovers to the most remote, unseen corners of the world's most astonishing mountains and trails for overnight adventures with a leave-no-trace focus. With two distances to choose from in the United Kingdom — 50K and 100K — this once-in-a-lifetime weekend experience takes you through breathtaking views of Cumbria's many lakes as you connect with yourself and Mother Nature.

Related: What Makes HIGHLANDER the Adventure of a Lifetime?

5. The Hawaii Spartan Trifecta Weekend

The Hawaii Spartan Trifecta Weekend is one of our most bucket list-worthy obstacle course races. Not only is every race distance — from 5K to 50K, and even Kids races — on the schedule, but the venue, Kualoa Ranch, has been the site of over 60 Hollywood films, including Jurassic Park and Godzilla. You'll attend an authentic Hawaiian luau, plunge through lush jungles past leftover prehistoric props, and race under open skies on the white-sand coast of Waikiki Beach — all just minutes from historic Honolulu. This is undoubtedly one obstacle course race that every Spartan should do before they die. 

Related: The Hawaii Trifecta Weekend Is the Ultimate Bucket List Getaway. Here's Why.

6. World's Toughest Mudder

World's Toughest Mudder combines ultrarunning with obstacle course racing in the most dynamic fashion. The 24-hour event, which can be run individually or in two- to four-person teams, is extremely taxing, but equally rewarding. After kicking off the festival on a Saturday, you'll race through the night, tackle dozens of miles and even more invigorating signature obstacles, and fight your way to the Sunday finish with the help of your pit crew. This is, without a doubt, Tough Mudder's most challenging event.

7. The Spartan Trifecta World Championship in Sparta, Greece

Earning a Trifecta (completing a Sprint or Stadion, a Super, and a Beast or Ultra in one calendar year) is one of the most coveted accomplishments in the Spartan universe. And once you complete it, you'll not only earn bragging rights for a lifetime, but also cement your spot on the starting line at the Trifecta World Championship in the place where it all began: Sparta, Greece. Prepare to discover the city's rich history, zip beneath the monumental Greek mountains, and compete to have your name engraved on the Ancient Wall of Honor over three days of unforgettable racing and celebrations. 

Plus, if you're an original Unbreakable Pass holder, you'll get a glimpse at your own dedicated stone, built next to our new 35-foot statue in Sparta, which will honor the original 300 Spartans who bravely fought and lost their lives in the Battle of Thermopylae.

8. The Spartan World Championship in Abu Dhabi

The Spartan World Championship went international for the first time in 2021, bringing thousands of Spartans from across the globe together to witness Abu Dhabi's annual Parade of Nations and tackle everything from a 60-hour Agoge to a Super, a Beast, a Kids race, a half-marathon Trail race, and a 50K Trail race. This is arguably our most culturally-immersive weekend EVER, but you'll need to prepare for the unique and unmatched challenges that await you in the Abu Dhabi deserts: calf-burning sand, scorching and unrelenting sun, our most unbelievable climbs that will have you scrambling on your hands and knees, and memories that will last a lifetime ... and beyond. 

Related: 2022 Spartan World Championship: Dates, Details, and a New Venue

9. La Ruta: Costa Rica

In 1993, Mountain Bike Hall of Fame inductee Roman Urbina created the world's first stage mountain bike race, La Ruta, in Costa Rica. It has since become widely regarded as the toughest cycling event on the entire planet. You kick off the race in the hot Caribbean lowlands on the Atlantic coast and pass through 20 microclimates before finishing at the Pacific Ocean three days later.

“La Ruta is a soul-swapping hard, exotically wild, singular journey across laughably steep inclines and hysterically steep descents," 2013 finisher Chris Case said. "You go through jungles, plantations, villages, across ecosystems and temperate zones, over volcanoes and beaches and terrain that you never quite imagined you could ride on a bike."

10. The Spartan Trail World Championship: Transgrancanaria

Another astonishing event from the Spartan Trail World Championship series, Transgrancanaria is one of the oldest European Trail races, making this Spanish event a pioneer in the sport. Expect to see trail runners of all ages and abilities at this event as you traverse the treacherous, yet absolutely stunning, Island of Gran Canaria. Beginning at the sea, you'll scramble up mountains of volcanic rock, and then plunge past the magnificent Roque Nublo that towers overhead and through dense forests until you once again reach the sand. With warm, tropical winter temperatures and a plethora of race distances — from 15K to 126K — this event is perfect for any trail lover who craves varying terrain.