wilderness LECTURES

Swimming the World's Greatest Rivers

Martin Strel on 16/11/2011 19:30

Advance ?9.00, Door ?9.50, Concessions ?8.50

Chemistry Theatre, University of Bristol
Martin Strel  (c) Borut Strel

Martin Strel is one of the most elite extreme athletes in history. He holds four Guinness world records in distance swimming, all of them performed on the world's greatest rivers. In the space of 66 days, between February 1st and April 8th 2007, he swam 5,268km (3,274 miles) of the Amazon.

Martin taught himself to swim when he was 6, in a small stream, and became a professional marathon swimmer in 1978. Before that he was a successful guitar player. He started out swimming in the World Cup and later doing a succession of individual swimming marathons. Martin's extraordinary feats have surpassed the boundaries of sport and with his endurance and determination he brings together individuals, nations and even continents. His projects do not focus only on great sporting achievements, he also promotes the environmental message.

Martin has an adventure holiday website at:


Nearly at the finish (c) Borut Strel

In this account of truly epic feats of endurance, Martin speaks about achieving his extreme swimming challenges on the world?s greatest rivers, the Amazon, Yangtze, Mississippi, Danube and Paran?. His experiences lead him eloquently to raise awareness for clean waters and a green environment. He integrates stories from his unique experiences and explains how he mentally prepares himself to swim day after day. Martin?s long river journeys are mostly the journeys of his mind and only he knows what it takes to complete such breath-taking challenges.

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