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Top tips for choosing a walking holiday

 hf holidays

If you love the great outdoors, you’ll know that few things beat the escape and relaxation of a good walk. Whether that means rambling along a dramatic British fell, hiking an imposing Italian Alp, or strolling through the colourful streets of Havana - there’s no better way to explore the world than on foot. But if you’ve never taken a walking holiday before, you might be surprised at how many different ways there are to explore a new destination.


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Why choose a walking holiday?

Whether you're a Couch to 5k fanatic or prefer a more gentle stroll, a walking holiday has something for everyone. Here’s a few reasons why a walking holiday could be the perfect break for you:

  • Walking has been proven to be good for your physical and mental wellbeing.
  • It’s suitable for all fitness levels from gentle strolls to leg-stretching challenges.
  • It burns calories, increases your metabolism and tones your body.
  • Walking is a great way to get outside into the open air and enjoy your surroundings.
  • It’s social. You can walk and chat with friends while you explore the local area.
  • Meet the locals and really get to know a destination.


Explore the UK on foot

You don’t need to venture too far afield either. From the easiest of ambles to intense mountain challenges, some of the most enjoyable walks are right here in the UK:

  • Take in the dramatic Dorset coastline.
  • Traverse the winding mountain trails of the Scottish Highlands.
  • Explore the picture-postcard valleys of the Lake District.
  • Look out over the patchwork colours of the Shropshire Moors.


How to choose the right walking holiday for you

solo walking holiday

A walking holiday can certainly give you the freedom to explore a destination but if you’d prefer to benefit from someone else’s experience, a guided tour might be the answer. Whatever trip you choose, there’s a few things worth considering first:

  • Make sure you pick a trip that will cover the landmarks you want to see.
  • Consider your walking ability. If you’re only used to walking to the kitchen for a cuppa, then you might want to give hiking in the Alps a miss. Choosing a trip that suits your walking ability means that you’ll enjoy your holiday so much more, and with plenty of choice available you’re bound to find the right vacation for you.
  • What facilities do you need? Do you prefer your accommodation to be located close to walking routes? Think about the things that will make your holiday perfect for you.


What should I wear on a walking holiday?

Being comfortable will ensure you are getting the most from each walk. Put these essentials on your packing list:

  • Comfortable footwear with a good grip. Walking boots are recommended and are essential for mountain walks.
  • Several layers of clothing so you can add or remove layers during the day. Man-made fabrics are better than cotton or wool for walking.
  • Waterproof jacket and over-trousers.
  • A small rucksack and a water bottle, insect repellent, sun hat, sunglasses and sun cream.


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The benefits of choosing a guided walking holiday

A guided walk is a great way to get stuck straight into your holiday and benefit from the knowledge of an experienced walks leader. A guide will lead your daily walk, showing you the local landmarks and hidden gems. 

HF Holidays’ guided walking holidays have a choice of up to three walks every day, giving you the opportunity to discover a range of stunning locations. From the rolling Cotswold Hills to the purple-clad high moors of North Yorkshire and the airy, granite cliffs of the Cornish coast, there is something to suit everyone. Every location is different, and their easy-to-use grading system makes sense of the UK’s varied terrain and advises on difficulty level. Just enjoy a full day’s walking with fellow guests and leave all the planning and navigation to HF Holidays. Leaders are with you throughout mealtimes and into the evening to ensure you have a sociable and enjoyable holiday from start to finish.

When you opt for a HF guided walking holiday, it means that:

  • You get to choose from great locations with walking routes on your doorstep.
  • You’ll get to pick accommodation with facilities tailored to walkers such as a boot room and drying facilities.
  • There will be areas to relax with tranquil gardens, perhaps a swimming pool, and free WiFi.
  • Start your day and round it off with delicious, local food. If you have full-board, then your accommodation will prepare picnic-lunch options to make sure you have the right food to keep you going throughout the day’s explorations, no matter how far that may be.

Nestled within picturesque locations throughout the UK, each of HF Holidays’ country houses offers the unique opportunity to make yourself at home and experience life in the countryside. Choose from 18 UK country houses tailored to walkers. Each has its own individual character – from elegant Georgian mansions to charming seaside houses – and are mostly set within National Parks or Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Choose from houses in the mountains, by the coast, in hills and moorland or meadows. All of their houses are rated three or four-stars.


Can I take my grandchildren on a walking holiday?

 family walking holiday

Travelling together as a family is a magical experience; there are few things more thrilling than seeing the world through the eyes of a child. When choosing a family walking holiday, you’ll need to find a trip that caters to everyone, no matter their age. Look for a company that offers a choice of walks each day and plenty of activities to keep children entertained. It’s also worth putting the following on your checklist:

  • a choice of locations to suit individual tastes.
  • accommodation that will fit everyone and suitable for children.
  • fabulous food served at family-friendly hours.
  • other children to play with.
  • experienced and friendly leaders to make the walks fun and informative.

On HF family walking holidays, you can make a splash at the seaside, explore fascinating caves, visit iconic castles and view stunning waterfalls. They offer a great selection of action-packed activity breaks all set in breath-taking national parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Held during school holidays, these are all full-board with family-friendly mealtimes. Some country houses have swimming pools - perfect for a dip after a day out walking. There are also lovely gardens and grounds to relax in - or to play hide-and-seek - and plenty of evening games and activities to keep everyone entertained.

From tots to teens, mums, dads and grandparents, there is something for everyone with up to four walks to choose from each day. Designed with your family in mind, some walks include an exciting activity such as stopping at a beach, visiting a castle or riding on a steam train. Select a shorter walk and head back to the house early to enjoy a swim in the pool or relax in the stunning surroundings. Whichever adventure your family choose, every child will receive a certificate celebrating their personal achievements.

HF Holidays have over 100 year's of experience organising outdoor holidays. To find out more, visit their website


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