An Adventure to England and Wales

Suzie, Patti, Katherine, Jill, Olivia, Sandra, Lynn and Susan

Tuesday 7th May – Tuesday 21st May 2024

Number of Travellers: 8
Duration: 15 Days / 14 Nights

Overview

On a carefully crafted, bespoke trip, explore the charming nature of southern England with your knowledgeable Wilderness guide. Begin by visiting the Cotswolds, England’s largest designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). A landscape of rolling green fields, honey-coloured villages and ancient deciduous woodland, it’s a wonderful place to explore on foot. Afterwards, travel west into Wales to explore the Brecon Beacons National Park. Enjoy fabulous walking, visit the pretty market town of Hay-On-Wye and take some free time to relax.  Journey south to explore the sea-soaked shores of Cornwall. Wander through the cobbled streets of tiny fishing villages, pop into artisanal shops and enjoy fresh seafood. By the rolling waves of the Atlantic, visit medieval castles and look out for seals, dolphins and an eclectic number of sea birds. On a trip that showcases the beauty of southern England and Wales, enjoy peaceful hikes, delicious food and charming accommodation in excellent company.

Highlights

  • Hike through diverse and beautiful landscapes, learning about the history, culture and stories of the region
  • Explore picturesque villages that brim with character, history, and rural charm
  • Relax in independent, boutique accommodation, carefully chosen for their warm hospitality

Day by Day

Day 1 - Tuesday 7th May - London to the Cotswolds

Arrive at Heathrow this morning and meet your Wilderness guide. Leave the bustling metropolis of London behind and head west into the Cotswolds, stopping in Oxford to pick up Lynn. A region cherished for its pastoral charm, pretty villages, flower-rich limestone grassland and deep incised valleys and the inspiration for many works of art and literature, including Beatrix Potter, J.R.R Tolkien and Jane Austen, it’s a pretty and interesting place to explore. Arrive at a beautiful, traditional country inn tucked in the heat of a picturesque village and take some time to settle in. Perhaps enjoy a stroll in the warm afternoon light, before enjoying dinner and a good night’s sleep.

Overnight: Lower Slaughter | The Slaughters Country Inn
Meals Included: Lunch and Dinner

Day 1 - Guide Details - Louise Russell Read More +

Name: Louise Russell
Contact Number: +44 (0) 7979 798974
Meeting Place: Heathrow Airport Arrivals | Meeting Time: 8:30 am

Louise will meet you at the arrivals area at Heathrow Airport and will be tracking your flight. She will have a sign so you’ll recognise her but please do message her if you are delayed making your way through customs. You will pick Lynn up in Oxford on the way to the Cotswolds at the Randolph Hotel in Oxford.

Day 1 - Dinner Details Read More +

Restaurant: The Slaughters Inn
Reservation Time: 7:00 pm
Website: http://www.theslaughtersinn.co.uk/

Day 2 - Wednesday 8th May - Hiking the Cotswolds

Wake up this morning in the peaceful, rural beauty of the Cotswolds. After breakfast, lace up your boots and pop on your day pack, joining your guide for a lovely, undulating walk. Once option is a hike through the Windrush Valley. Begin by meandering through the pretty market town of Burford, looking out over sweeping arable fields and passing through the now deserted hamlet of Widford. Not much remains of the settlement now, apart from the tiny 13th-century St Oswald’s Church that sits quietly in a grassy meadow. Enjoy a packed lunch, listening to the skylarks and blackbirds, before continuing on to explore the valley on foot. Return this evening to your cosy accommodation.

Overnight: Lower Slaughter | The Slaughters Country Inn
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 2 - Dinner Details Read More +

Hotel: Lords of the Manor
Reservation Time: 7:00 pm
Website: https://www.lordsofthemanor.com/

Day 3 - Thursday 9th May - Bourton-on-the-Water and the Slaughters

This morning, enjoy visiting Bourton-on-the-Water, which is regularly voted one of the prettiest villages in England. Known for its five stone bridges that arch across the River Windrush, it’s an idyllic place to enjoy a morning meander. Today’s itinerary is extremely flexible, with the option to spend time doing some shopping, strolling around the pretty streets and sampling the local produce. This afternoon transfer to Lower Slaughter and enjoy a circular walk that ribbons its way through the countryside. Along with wonderful views, the trail passes a 16th-century Dovecote and through Upper Slaughter, another quintessential Cotswold village home to a beautiful parish church.

Overnight: Lower Slaughter | The Slaughters Country Inn
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 3 - Dinner Details Read More +

Restaurant: Mousetrap Inn
Reservation Time: 7:00 pm
Website: https://www.themousetrapinn.co.uk/

Day 4 - Friday 10th May - The Cotswolds Way

As the soft dawn mist fades from the fields, enjoy a relaxed breakfast. Today, you’ll hike part of the Cotswolds Way, the 102-mile long-distance trail that runs the length of the Cotswolds. There are a few sections to choose from, one of which involve a climb up Dover’s Hill and to the 3-storey Broadway Tower with commanding views. Or perhaps discover the rich and ancient history of the area as you reach Beckbury camp, an Iron Age fort that dates back to 2000 BC. Then pass the ruins of 13th-century Hailes Abbe and on to Belas Knap, this extensive Neolithic burial chamber is where ancient people would gather to bury their dead over 5000 years ago. The length of the hike can be flexible based on how you are feeling, but however many miles you have under your belt, you can end the day with a visit to a local inn in Chipping Campden.

Overnight: Lower Slaughter | The Slaughters Country Inn
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 4 - Dinner Details Read More +

Restaurant: The Slaughters Country Inn
Reservation Time: 7:00 pm
Website: http://www.theslaughtersinn.co.uk/

Day 5 - Saturday 11th May - Wye Valley and the Brecon Beacons

After breakfast, leave the Cotswolds and, with your guide, cross the border into Wales, Land of Dragons. Carved out in the Ice Age, the mountains, hills and valleys are arrestingly beautiful. Over the border, stop in Wye Valley –  designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty; with its winding river, lush forests and miles upon miles of wildflower meadows, it’s easy to see why. Enjoy a walk with your guide through the valley before continuing into the rugged hills of the Brecon Beacons National Park and checking into your charming Welsh country hotel.

Overnight: Builth Wells | Lake Country House
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 5 - Dinner Details Read More +

Restaurant: Lake Country House
Reservation Time: 7:00 pm
Website: https://www.lakecountryhouse.co.uk/

Day 6 - Sunday 12th May - Exploring Hay-On-Wye

Culture and heritage are incredibly important in Wales; in fact, Welsh is predominantly spoken in many areas, and you’re likely to hear snippets of the lyrical language as you visit the pretty market town of Hay-On-Wye. Just north of the Black Mountains and known as the Town of Books, the town is full of independent and quirky artisanal shops and is famous for its secondhand and antiquarian bookshops – with some specialising in rare and out-of-print volumes. It’s a lovely place to spend a couple of hours exploring before enjoying lunch in a local cafe. Later this afternoon, head out with your guide for a walk to soak up the beauty of the Welsh countryside before returning to your hotel for dinner.

Overnight: Builth Wells | Lake Country House
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 6 - Dinner Details Read More +

Restaurant: Lake Country House
Reservation Time: 7:00 pm
Website: https://www.lakecountryhouse.co.uk/

Day 7 - Monday 13th May - Arrive in Port Isaac, Cornwall

Today you’ll leave Wales, crossing back into England and travelling south today to the salt-stained coastline of Cornwall, famed for charming fishing villages, pristine beaches and the Cornish Pasty. Enjoy the scenic drive, around 4 hours, with time to stop and stretch your legs before arriving at the village of Tintagel, imbued with legends of King Arthur. Walk along the headland and into the footfalls of history, crossing the spectacular bridge to explore the ruins of Tintagel Castle. Later, head to the small village of Port Isaac, set high on the Cornish coastline. Settle into your cosy hotel tonight and enjoy dinner on the coast.

Overnight: Port Isaac | The Port Gaverne Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 7 - Dinner Details Read More +

Restaurant: Port Gaverne Restaurant & Hotel
Reservation Time: 7:00 pm
Website: https://portgavernehotel.co.uk/

Day 8 - Tuesday 14th May - Port Isaac, Port Quin and Padstow

This morning, drive to Port Quin to the start of your point-to-point hike, where you will follow part of the South West Coast Path – one of the UK’s most treasured national trails. Where ribbons of water meander inland and views stretch far out towards the horizon, this is sure to be a memorable walk. Hike to Port Isaac, where you will take a stroll through the winding lanes of this 14th-century fishing village where white-washed cottages look out over the Atlantic Ocean. Once you have soaked in the sights, travel a short distance to Padstow to explore the village and walk along the coast, discovering the hidden coves and beaches. If you are feeling brave, take a dip in the natural sea pool before returning to your hotel for a hot shower!

Overnight: Port Isaac | The Port Gaverne Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 8 - Dinner Details Read More +

Restaurant: The Golden Lion
Reservation Time: 7:00 pm
Website: https://www.thegoldenlionportisaac.co.uk/

Day 9 - Wednesday 15th May - St Agnes Head to St Ives

After breakfast, you’ll head St Agnes head, an area protected by the National Trust. Enjoy a quiet coastal walk here, passing the historical landmark Towanroath, the remains of a key engine mining house. This afternoon we’ll head to Healeys, a family-owned Cornish cyder farm and distillery. Enjoy a vintage tractor ride through the orchards before taking a tour of the distillery, including the workshop and cellar, and ending with a special tasting. Later transfer to beautiful St Ives, the jewel in the Cornish crown.

Overnight: St Ives | Harbour Hotel St Ives
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 9 - Dinner Details Read More +

Restaurant: St Ives Harbour Hotel and Spa
Reservation Time: 7:00 pm
Website: https://www.harbourhotels.co.uk/hotels/st-ives/

Day 10 - Thursday 16th May - Boat Trip and Exploring St Ives

As the sun makes the sea sparkle, enjoy a stroll through St. Ives. Popular with artists, the village is a delightful jumble of cobbled streets, historic buildings and independent shops. Spend the morning exploring the town, perhaps visiting the Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden. An English artist and sculptor, Barbara Hepworth moved to St Ives at the beginning of the Second World War and remained there for the rest of her life. This afternoon, enjoy a wildlife boat trip from St Ives, keeping an eye out for seals and dolphins as you learn more about this spectacular coastline from the knowledgeable crew.

Overnight: St Ives | St Ives Harbour Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 10 - Dinner Details Read More +

Restaurant: Source Kitchen | Location: St Ives
Reservation Time: 6:00 pm
Phone: +44 (0) 1736 799 487 | Website: https://www.sourcekitchen.co.uk/contact

Day 11 - Friday 17th May - St Michaels Mount

This morning, head out to visit St Michael’s Mount, a tidal island home to an ancient castle, chapel and local community. Immerse yourself in stories of deception and disguise while you explore this unique castle and gardens. After returning to the mainland, enjoy a coastal hike, admiring the views and looking out for the fins of dolphins playing in the surf. Return to St Ives for a final dinner in this iconic village.

Overnight: St Ives | Harbour Hotel St Ives
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 11 - Dinner Details Read More +

Restaurant: Pedn Olva
Reservation Time: 7:00 pm
Website: https://pednolva.co.uk/

Day 12 - Saturday 18th May - Lands End and North

Today head to enjoy an adventure to Land’s End – the most westerly tip of England. Begin your at the iconic Land’s End sign and head out to explore the southern most coast. This rocky, winding coastline is beautiful and invigorating, with plunging cliffs, sea caves, and deep blue pools. Later, visit the Minack Theatre, a stunning open-air stage overlooking the Atlantic, a dramatic setting for any play! Later, head north, arriving at your accommodation this evening. Settle in and then head out to Lyme Regis for dinner this evening.

Overnight: Hawkchurch | Fairwater Head Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 12 - Dinner Details Read More +

Restaurant: The Harbour Inn
Reservation Time: 7:30 pm
Website: https://www.harbourinnlymeregis.co.uk/

Day 13 - Sunday 19th May - Travel to Windsor

After a relaxed breakfast this morning, continue your journey to Windsor. Here you will say goodbye to your guide and have the afternoon to explore. Choose to take a walk along the River Themes or through Windsor Great Park.

Overnight: Windsor | Macdonald Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 14 - Monday 20th May - Exploring Windsor

After a relaxed breakfast, experience a leisurely day in Windsor. Spend the morning exploring the historic Windsor Castle, marvelling at its rich heritage. Afterwards, you may want to unwind with a tranquil rowing boat ride on the Thames, immersing yourself in the scenic beauty of this charming riverside town. Enjoy a final dinner in England and an early night ahead of tomorrow’s travel day.

Overnight: Windsor | Macdonald Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 15 - Tuesday 21st May - Depart

Wake refreshed after a good night’s sleep, and after breakfast, transfer to the airport. Taxis to the airport can be booked through your hotel the evening before.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Trip Details

Inclusions Read More
  • All accommodation from Day 1 to Day 15
  • Most meals as indicated above
  • Services of an experienced and knowledgeable qualified guide from Day 1 to Day 13
  • Ground transportation from Day 1 to Day 13
  • All guided hikes, activities and entrance fees mentioned in the itinerary
  • Personalised trip design and delivery
  • Snacks throughout the trip
  • 24 hour in-country support from the Wilderness Team
Exclusions Read More
  • Flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Meals not mentioned in the inclusions, including dinner on the 12th and lunch and dinner on the 13th and 14th.
  • Activities and entrance fees not mentioned in the inclusions
  • Gratuities
  • Taxi to the airport

Get in Touch


Accommodation

The Slaughters Country Inn

Lower Slaughter | Gloucestershire |
GL54 2HS | UK
Phone: +44 (0) 1451 822 143
Web: theslaughtersinn.co.uk

Lake Country House

Llangammarch Wells | Builth Wells | Powys |
LD4 4BS | Wales
Phone: +44 (0) 1591 620 202
Web: lakecountryhouse.co.uk

The Port Gaverne Hotel

Port Gaverne | Port Isaac | Cornwall |
PL29 3SQ | England
Phone: +44 (0)1208 822973
Web: portgavernehotel.co.uk

Harbour Hotel St Ives

The Terrace | St Ives | Cornwall |
TR26 2BN | England
Phone: +44 (0)1736 795 221
Web: harbourhotels.co.uk

Fairwater Head Hotel

Scouse Lane | Hawkchurch | Axminster |
EX13 5TX | UK
Phone: +44 (0) 1297 678 680
Web: fairwaterhead.co.uk

Macdonald Hotel

23 High St | Windsor |
SL4 1LH | UK
Phone: +44 (0) 344 879 9101
Web: macdonaldhotels.co.uk


Meet Your Guide

Louise Russell

Contact Number: +44 (0) 7979 798974

In my previous life, I was a computer programmer for 20-odd years – I was not as nerdy as some of my colleagues, honest! I spent every day of my spare time and holidays on walking holidays and adventures, both in the UK and all over the world.

In 2018, I switched to guiding and have loved every second of it! I especially like meeting so many different people with different outlooks. I’m lucky to live in Cornwall, just a short stroll from the South West Coast Path and a 2 mile long sandy beach. I love walking the Cornish coast in all weathers, especially if there’s a proper pub, a pasty, or a cream tea at the end of it (preferably all 3, please).

Full Web Bio