top of page

10 Year Old Walks 1,700 Miles for a Hug

Amazing story of a young boy who hiked from Italy to England, during quarantine, so he could hug his beloved grandma, who he hadn't seen for 18 months.

When Romeo Cox decided what he wanted more than anything else was a hug from his 77 year old grandmother, he didn’t let a few extraneous issues get in the way of his mission, like quarantine, or that he was only 10 years old or that she was 1,700 miles away and there were no flights from his new home in Sicily to his native UK.

Romeo’s parents took some convincing, but Romeo finally talked them into letting him make the trip. “I asked my parents and they said no more than 50 times,” he told The Daily Mail.

“Eventually they agreed - provided we planned everything was Covid-safe.” So Romeo set about planning the journey: “I drew a map. I would walk and take boats and do it naturally to help the planet,” he told The Times. “And I’d take Dad. It would be handy to have an adult.”

When all was prepared Romeo and his father, Phil, set off on their journey during in early summer. The pair trekked across Italy, Switzerland, and France.

In the course of their adventure, the intrepid duo spent many nights under the stars. They were also forced to fend off wild dogs, occasionally got lost, suffered sore feet, and took some time to volunteer at a refugee camp in Northern Calais. But no matter what problems they encountered, they just kept going. That’s because, in addition to seeing his grandmother, Romeo had another compelling reason to complete his mission: raising money to help refugee children.

Eventually, in September, father and son arrived in London where they spent a mandatory two weeks in isolation prior to being allowed to make the final leg of the journey to Grandma Rosemary’s home. “I’m feeling tired now - like an old 100-year-old man,” Romeo quipped to Metro News, “but it was so fun.”

It was difficult at first for his grandmother to wrap her head around everything Romeo had accomplished en route to their rendezvous. “I didn’t believe my grandson’s incredible journey at first,” she admitted. But more than anything else, her heart was filled with love and gratitude. “Children can inspire us and lift us all up. On behalf of all the grannies in all the world, I want to thank Romeo - as well and hug him and kiss him lots.”

Apart from receiving lots of hugs, Romeo also succeeded in raising £18,000 for Refugee Education Across Conflicts Trust.


Drastic Measures for Desperate Times: Picture this: it's early March and it's becoming increasingly clear that, bit by bit, the world was going to go into lockdown. And you want to get home to be with your family, particularly your 90 year old father. The problem is that you live on the tiny Portuguese island of Porto Santo and your family is in Argentina - and all flights have been cancelled.

bottom of page