By Mr Cross on 22/06/2017
Walking in Menorca seems to be nearly entirely on coast paths, with very few inland walks. That means linear walks, so unless you have two cars it's a matter of 'there and back', or a longish taxi ride. That said, it's a beautiful island, mostly unspoilt. Passing other cars in narrow lanes with dry-stone walls and thorn bushes can be nerve-wracking. We did four of the five Headwater-recommended walks, and would recommend Son Mercer de Baix for it's inland variety, the North Coast trail for its scenery, and Macaretta-Turqueta for beautiful coves. Also worth doing Cuitadella and Mao (on last day) town walks. Morvedra Nou is a delightful hotel in a very quiet location, with friendly and efficient staff. Standard room was clean and comfortable, but small, although with an outdoor terrace that was lovely in the evening sun. The dinner options included in the HW package were slightly unexciting and perhaps we should have spent a bit more on Menorcan specialities a la carte. House wines are OK and very reasonably priced. We had no difficulty finding restaurant/cafe lunch stops on our walks. Overall, a very enjoyable week.
By Ms Hardwick on 20/06/2017
Attractive baroque towns and some lovely hotels
By Mrs Pattison on 20/06/2017
Less hilly overall than expected with long very flat rides in between long climbs and some big steep hills. Challenging in the heat. Stunning scenery all the way with beautiful picturesque hill top towns. Wonderful region to visit with friendly locals, great food and wines.
By Mrs Morrison on 20/06/2017
Perfect for a relaxed walking holiday. Routes took us through lovely and contrasting scenery in a part of Spain that we would probably never have thought to visit. So glad to have discovered it.
By Mr Lulham on 20/06/2017
Beautiful region, lovely hotel with great food and superb walking - aided by exceptional weather. Switzerland is quite expensive but we felt this holiday was great value for money.
By Mrs Pryor on 20/06/2017
The Dordogne is a beautiful area. Good routes on quiet roads but testing hills! Accommodation is very good and the food lived up to the expectations as advertised. If anything the four course evening meal every night is too much but no doubt others will disagree! We felt the grading system was slightly underrated as at times the hills were testing given the very warm sunny days we enjoyed. Overall a lovely week in a lovely part of the world. Thank you
By Mr Wotton on 20/06/2017
Great holidays my first cycling one and lots of fun
By Mr Redgrave on 20/06/2017
Excellent holiday in very scenic area
By Mrs West on 20/06/2017
A great way to visit chateaux in the Loire Valley. All the hotels had pools which were much appreciated after the cycling and the standard of food was very good.
By Mrs Herron on 20/06/2017
This holiday is well organised with reliable backup available if needed. Although we were initially sceptical we found the Ride with GPS system was good when the printed out notes were ambiguous! It would be nice to have more descriptive notes on points of interest on the itinerary. The cycling was varied and on interesting and not too hilly routes often with lovely views to enjoy. We were slightly disappointed with the quality of food, apart from at the Villa Lussana, as it didn't live up to our expectations of what we have enjoyed previously with Headwater. Also breakfasts could be a bit variable in what was offered e.g. in the Belvedere Resort ai Colli there was a 5 Euro extra charge if you wished cheese or cold meat or eggs while in other hotels these were included. On the whole we were made to feel very welcome but I would certainly recommend bringing a travel kettle if like us you enjoy a cup of tea as they clearly do not understand how to make decent tea and also charge a lot for it! Air conditioning is an absolute necessity and it was also of variable efficiency in the different accommodations, actually blowing the lights in the L'Albara Agriturismo when we tried to turn it up a little. However each place had different pros and cons e.g. L.'Albara had wonderful baking and fruit and the freshest lettuce straight from the vegetable garden even thought the main courses were pretty dire! We also had the best Tira Misu I have ever tasted and the pool was a real bonus! In summary a great holiday so long as you are prepared for a variety of accommodation and standards of food,
By Mrs Hodgson on 20/06/2017
Bavaria is a wonderful destination, the walking is excellent. Oberammergau and the nearby villages are a delight, in June the meadows are a joy to behold. My limited German was a help as in some restaurants and bars, there was limited English, and even then the local accent was tricky, (but Apfel strudel is good in any language).
By Mrs Creswell on 20/06/2017
An extremely enjoyable holiday. Walking was at times tough due to the temperature, in the mid 30s, so perhaps May or September are better months for this holiday than June? The hotel was wonderfully situated. It was so relaxing and the staff polite, efficient and helpful. Would recommend taking out insurance for damage to car as some roads, especially the one to and from the hotel, were narrow and bordered by dry stone walls. However, we did manage to deliver the car back to Mao scratch and dent free!
By Mrs Elliott on 16/06/2017
We were disappointed not to be met by a guide on the first day as we had that on previous occasions. She claimed that she had tried to call us but most of the time messages were not passed on. Why was she not given our mobile number? The walks were generally very good and clearly described - it was useful to know about eating places along the route. Though we were disappointed with the one that ended up at Marina del Cantone. Too much road and we kept getting lost because the directions were not always clear.
By Mr Schafer on 16/06/2017
Overview: This was our 8th Headwater trip over the past three years. The walks had very scenic views of the Amalfi Coast. We had an extremely knowledgble local guide. We were, however, disappointing with location of hotel near Sorrento and our short Pompeii visit (and that day, in general).
There were large cruise ships in ports and towns were very touristy.
The Garden Hotel in Ravello had nice rooms with a great view of the coast from the balcony/patio and just outside the main square of Ravello. The dinners at the hotel were all very good. Breakfast was OK and the seating in the breakfast area was odd. Tables were set for two to look out at sea view but not enough for all guests to sit in this area; we had to sit in another dining area alone.
The Bellavista Hotel was a 15 min bus ride outside Sorrento. The room was nice awith a view of sea and Capri but it was right on a noisy busy road. There was nothing in walking distance from the hotel. The local bus stops outside the hotel but the buses can be crowded with standing room only. Dinners were good but the acoustics in the hotel restaurant were terrible and there was a large group dining at the same time. We would have much preferred a centrally located Sorrento hotel and opportunity for other dining options, especially on 'free day'. Cannot recommend this hotel. While looking at the self-guided Amalfi walk, we see that the hotels are all centrally located in towns, even Sorrento.
Our guide, Lucia, is from Positano and was engaging and very knowledgeable about the trails, history of the region.
The hikes were accurately rated as 2 boots, varied, with great views of the coast. The 'Path of the Gods' hike was somewhat crowded.
The views up and down the coast while on the hikes were amazing
We had guided visits to both Villa Cimbrone and Rufolo in Ravello but wished we'd returned on our own to linger and have more time for photos.
There were cruise ships in port every day so the towns were packed with tourists. The local buses used to return to Ravello were standing room only. On one day our group opted to take a taxi (at our expense) to return to the hotel after lunch.
Trip to Pompeii:
This was a poorly planned day. It took ~1.5 hrs to get to Pompeii. The site was mobbed. Our local guide was good but the crowds made it difficult to stay with her and we were rushed through. We only spent about two hours at the site and had no free time. It was then 1 hr 45 min ride to a pizza restaurant where the owner gave a pizza crust making demo(and we ate lunch). Afterwards, we had a short walk. The itinerary for this day needs to be reorganized as it is was an extremely poor use of time given heavy traffic at this time. A centrally located hotel in Sorrento might have helped, perhaps a late afternoon visit to Pompeii, or combining Pompeii visit with a different hike and visiting the pizza restaurant another day.
By Mrs Edwards on 13/06/2017
A perfect mix of activities based in the most welcoming family hotel within an exquisite setting of water, woodland, pastures and mountains. The evening meals are a gastronomic tour de force without being at all heavy; the chef and his son are true artists who can conjure colours and tastes in perfect harmony - quite exceptional. We had memorable walks, cycle rides, visits to historical sites and swims and were reluctant to leave.
By Mr Good on 13/06/2017
Exactly what it said on the tin Would not recommend Burgundy walking to walkers Have been to Alsace better walking experience but food accommodation better with Headwaters
By Mr Allan on 13/06/2017
This possibly the most enjoyable and rewarding Headwater Holiday of many involving city breaks (Manchester, Catania and Syracuse) and adventure (walks on volcanos and travel (by train, plane, ferry and taxi) Take care to check travel arrangements. Travelling from Edinburgh to Manchester airport we were tempted to stay in City Centre Manchester but opted for the Airport Hotel for an early flight but still managed an early evening visit to Manchester City Art Gallery and a meal out in town.
Mandala Travel act for Headwater in Sicily. They were excellent arranging pickups, transfers and Hotelsâ€¦â€¦â€¦.because of the G7 Syracuse was arranged as â€˜non-standardâ€™ alternative to Taormina. The extra expense proved worthwhile. Syracuse is delightful, compact and interesting. The Royal Maniace Hotel is well located for walks and restaurants. The briefing provided at the start of the holiday was one of the best ever, giving a clear indication of what to expect on walks and providing detailed information on the weather, transfers, and ferry and bus times. These were important to make the most of options available â€“ it is worth checking breakfast times against early starts. For example on Lipari this can allow a visit to the serious museum after the days walk along the coast.
The success of the Stromboli night walk largely due to our excellent guide Manuel (and his very young assistant Ryan!) We found preparation and concentration helped â€“ getting into a rhythm more important than taking pictures on way up. It is a â€˜puffâ€™ â€“ we left the hotel at 4 pm and returned at 1215 am exhausted but elated! That was special. Etna is also bit but of a â€˜puffâ€™ but again it was well lead by our guide Pepe (he features in a you tube video with the BBC team who got caught out by an unexpected eruption). Pepe shared his lunch with usâ€¦â€¦â€¦another hugely enjoyable day out meeting more great people. All the drivers were excellent. We spent most time with Roberto who provided much information and Italian conversation classes for my better half with simultaneous translation for me!
Hotel Mediterraneo in Catania is well located, efficient and functional. When we decided to bring forward the airport pickup time on our last day (anticipating travel disruption because of the G7) the hotel contacted Mandala Travel on our behalf and an earlier pick up was arranged. The island hotels also did their job well and made us welcome. We had some concerns with the Royal Maniace Hotel in Syracuse. They were unable to switch off the air extractor in the bathroom for our stay. The room information stated that breakfast was available from 7 am (we had a 7.30 am pickup) but one member of staff advised breakfast did not start until 7.30 am. (A polite and helpful female member of staff did in fact save the day by ensuring we did get breakfast.) When we raised this with the Hotel management we were told that the room information referred to the Winter breakfast time â€¦â€¦â€¦Strangely all the hot food was on the serving table at 7 am! We still consider this hotel to be worthwhile and hope Headwater can offer this as a great alternative to Taormina!
Can I mention one place to eat try: Scirocco Fish Lab in both Catania and Syracusa both near the fish markets and perfect for a snack.
Mandala Travel kept the level of communication to a perfect level once phoning me on Robertoâ€™s phone while travelling to Etna just to make sure everything was going to plan! On our flight over we met a man who had dedicated his life to providing outdoor activities for Manchester school kidsâ€¦â€¦..now retired (but still climbing) he attached equal importance to the instructors and the staff responsible for the accommodation and food. He believed all were essential to a successful outcomeâ€¦â€¦â€¦â€¦â€¦.sound familiar?
By Mr Beeby on 13/06/2017
Rheine falls very busy. Should offer stop en-route for rail and more options for long journeys (over 300 miles). Make sure camera charged up every night. Allow time to explore en route on bike. All locals very friendly in every country and willing to talk. All to easy to eat and drink too much. Hotel staff less likely want to speak English.
By Mrs Gallego perez on 13/06/2017
I would have done away with the day to visit Malaga, instead put in another walk. The return flight was a mess because of B.A., nothing to do with you but it put a damper on future plans.
By Mr Jones on 05/06/2017
Cycling in Bavaria provided us with a lovely holiday with very pleasant cycling along the Danube and other rivers. Good scenery along the way and some interesting towns to explore. Opportunities to visit other towns and attractions on 'rest days'. Good hotels, all well located.
By Mr Kaye on 05/06/2017
Excellent locations, accommodation, food and service from local reps. Good instructions and walks, but check the amount of walking on metalled surfaces before booking.
By Mr Owen-jones on 05/06/2017
The walking was great but might be challenging when the summer temperatures occur. Good combination of walking and sight seeing.
By Miss Chappell on 01/06/2017
Beautiful scenery of rolling hills in vast valleys with wildflower meadows, exceeded expectations. Be prepared for a lot of climbing up & down hills. Extremely cold our first day as 2000m high & still some snow lying, so warm clothing needed! First day was long descent & we have recommended to guide that might be an idea to alter this walk slightly. Renate our guide was excellent & went out of her way to help us. Hopsitality, accommodation & food was superb, especially at the Hotel Nobillis.
By Mr Smith on 24/05/2017
Venabu Fjellhotel is the perfect cross-country ski destination. Headwater really know what they are doing by organising the logistics of this holiday - we highly recommended!
By Ms Schoenfeld on 24/05/2017
The hiking was great, although more hills than we expected. Our bags were always in our rooms when we arrived at our next destination, which was always a nice treat to be able to take a shower immediately. The itinerary was great, and allowed us to travel on our own, but with all the details worked out for us.
By Mrs Ede on 24/05/2017
This holiday is not walking every day. It includes travelling between islands and walking at each destination. It is all very interesting and the highlight is climbing Stromboli which is just amazing. It was an expensive holiday in that you have to buy all lunches, evening meals, drinks and pay for ferries on top of the basic cost.
By Mrs Stephenson on 24/05/2017
Fantastic holiday. My husband is a keen cyclist and I am not, but I loved it. The routes were just the right distance and not too many hills. Add in great food and wine tasting and it was a perfect holiday. We made good use of the wine collection service! Already planning which holiday to book next!
By Mrs Pursey on 24/05/2017
Stayed in some delightful places, especially Baglio La Luna where the location was magnificent, views, relaxing areas and we were so well looked after. Changes in arrangement occasioned by bad weather were efficiently and effectively carried out. All arrangements for meeting and dropping us off worked well, pleasantly and without fuss.
By Mr Goscomb on 24/05/2017
We thoroughly enjoyed the Secrets of Sicily Walking holiday in early May 2017 which certainly reached all our expectations. The hotels we stayed at were all very well chosen and we particularly enjoyed the Marettimo Residence and the Baglio Luna at San Vito lo Capo which was fantastic. All the arrangements went well and the walks we did were lovely and easy to follow using the excellent detailed notes provided. We saw so many lovely wild flowers and birds and the views were wonderful. Overall we would have no hesitation recommending Headwater walking holidays and we are looking forward to choosing another of their walking holidays next year.
By Mrs Perkins on 24/05/2017
Always delightful company in spite of a small group
By Mrs Skellorn on 24/05/2017
Beautiful views, helpful, concerned and highly qualified guide, well-planned walks, delicious food and new friends.
By Mr Davis on 24/05/2017
An excellent guided walking holiday. Beautiful scenery, well planned walks, delicious food and comfortable hotels. A great holiday was made into a fantastic holiday thanks to our superb guide Lucia, who was friendly, knowledgeable and helpful beyond the call of duty throughout the entire week. The multinational group of nine from Australia, United States and UK were really friendly and welcoming. Any concerns I had as a single traveller evaporated within minutes of joining the group, and our day trip to Capri will reside in my memory for a long time. I haven't laughed so much in a long time! The walking was accurately described by the website, about 4-6 hours per day. A few sections of some paths required walking poles and extra care, but for a reasonably fit and healthy person used to walking 6-7 miles per day were no problem. The visits to Villa Cimbrone, Villa Ruffolo, Pompeii and a local pizza restaurant were excellent. The worst part of the holiday was saying goodbye to everyone and having to come home! Can I go back please?
By Mr Jones on 24/05/2017
Some great walks along Portugal's beautiful, unspoiled and dramatic coastline with an excellent choice of hotels for good food and comfort.
By Mr Souster on 24/05/2017
Menorca's surprisingly flat, especially round the coast where most of the walks are located, so ideal for gentle walking - not for hard-bitten hill-walkers! Easy to traverse the length or breadth of the island by car in a hour or less, but watch out for minor roads on the Kompass map which prove to be private or little more than an overgrown bridle path. Much of the island seems untouched by tourism, which is delightful, but don't expect to find a cafe wherever you stop. Many things are still free to visit. People and climate very friendly!
By Mrs Taylor on 24/05/2017
Headwater offers self guided holidays, but with the benefit of sorting all the travel arrangements.
By Mr Pearson on 24/05/2017
This holiday has a delightful base at the pretty finca run by Gordon and sue and their friendly and efficient team .Their commitment to making your holiday as enjoyable as possible includes excellent guiding, delicious food within a relaxed , comfortable atmosphere. Walks seem to be adjusted to match the weather and overall ability of the group. The inclusion of meals out in the local restaurants etc meant we really felt that we were experiencing the Spanish cuisine. Great fun in a lively group. Thank you!
By Mr Eacott on 24/05/2017
This was a door to door excellent holiday and experience.
By Mr Prior on 23/05/2017
Our third visit to the Finca. As always great - although the mixture of guide/companions made this possibly the most enjoyable visit yet. As always the Finca is a superb centre for the holiday; and Elaine is an outstanding guide in all respects.
By Mr Mepham on 22/05/2017
The holiday is an excellent combination of interesting, good length walks, fine hotels and great food. The lack of restaurant facilities at the Renoir was more than made up for by the quality of the food at the nearby Bistro L'Octroi. The finest food was undoubtedly at the Hotel Les Glycines but all were very satisfactory. There was plenty to do on all the rest days and we would particularly recommend visiting to Marqueyssac Gardens in Beynac, the museums dedicated to the amazing pre-historic finds around Les Eyzies, and lounging by the pool at the Laborderie.
By Mr Hurrell on 22/05/2017
The walk suited us and the various views were amazing
By Mr Saxton on 17/05/2017
Hotel Acquaviva is an idyllic place to spend a week. Its a good job the weather was slightly cool for the time of year or very little walking would have been done. The scenery was breathtaking and the hilltop villages of Sovana, Sorano and Pitigliano were breathtaking and the church in Monetmerano is a gem. We knew very little about Etruscans before this holiday... very interesting.
Can also recommend a stop over on the way there, to visit Tivoli and the Villa D'Este gardens and then Villa Adriana. We stayed at Hotel Flora in Frascati which was also excellent.
A day in Siena is also a must.
By Mrs Harrison on 17/05/2017
We have used Headwater before and always found the hotels good and the guides excellent.
I think the boot system is tricky - we were on a two boot holiday, and we had some real scrambling, so check before booking.
By Miss Eason on 17/05/2017
Sue & David are exceptional for their admin, planning and detail and leading of the walks, care of their guests especially on the walks, hospitality and catering and can be recommended in every way.
By Mrs Littler on 17/05/2017
A lovely holiday, we enjoyed every moment. The coastal scenery was spectacular, the countryside lovely - full of wild flowers. The accommodation was excellent and the stay in Pedralva was a great experience. We enjoyed the food and the local people we met were all very friendly. Our Rep ,Ludmila, was very friendly and efficient.
By Mrs Turner on 16/05/2017
Although challenging at times, we really felt as though we had had a good relaxing. holiday. Sardinia is beautiful. The food at the Hotel Sa Muvara was wonderful but red meat at every meal. It was cold when we were there at the beginning of May so be prepared. The bar and restaurant had wonderful fires but the rooms were chilly. Fantastic staff. The Hotel Costa Durada was more noisy with dog barking, bottle collection early mornings so if this bothers you, ask for a quiet room. If you are following a gluten free diet ask Alberto to get you some bread as that supplied by the hotels was not very nice. Alberto is the best guide we have had, knowledgeable, kind and a wonderful sense of humour.
By Mrs MacDonald on 16/05/2017
Cycling in South Dorset on decent bikes staying in excellent hotels/hostels is a great experience. The countryside is awesome and the cycle routes though challenging enabled us to enjoy it without killing us.
By Miss Smith on 16/05/2017
Beautiful coastline ,lovely walks
By Mr Nicol on 16/05/2017
weather--service--hotels--people--could not ask for any better..this last ride we had gps on the bikes.but sometimes lost signal
By Mr Russell on 16/05/2017
Algarve Wild West walking exceeded expectation. Floral environment on all walks was dazzling. All walks easy to follow as marked and described in written guide. Two boots was just about correct.
By Mr Taylor on 11/05/2017
It was one of the best walking holidays we have had. The hotel was superb with wonderful staff and food. The walking was excellent with varied terrain and scenery. I would highly recommend it to anyone.
By Mrs Hiam on 10/05/2017
We enjoyed a wonderful week's walking which exceeded our expectations. The landscapes, birds and flowers were exceptional and we particularly enjoyed hearing the nightingales singing in the gorge. We were very lucky to be able to see some of the Easter celebrations too. The hotel was very welcoming and offered excellent service and delicious food.
By Mr Flew on 10/05/2017
We had a wonderful holiday. The hotel was very comfortable (we did have a free upgrade as the hotel wasn't very busy). The staff could not have been more helpful. The walking was very varied and we were blessed with beautiful weather.
By Mrs Locker on 09/05/2017
At times the walks through the levadas were rather tedious because the vegetations blocked all the views.All the transfers worked really well.
By Mr Williams on 09/05/2017
Easy walking, good hotels, mixed weather.
By Mr Merryweather on 08/05/2017
'Wonderful holiday! Delightful (and very) varied accommodation, excellent food and terrific sights and smells in some wonderful countryside. But this can be a physically demanding cycle tour, so do ensure you are prepared to cycle - or push - your bike up some stiff hills.
Thanks to all at Headwater and, in particular, to Ludmilla.'
By Mrs Parsley on 03/05/2017
A most enjoyable holiday with varied, mostly flat walking in the spring countryside, covered with beautiful flowers. Although this was an Exodus holiday and we expected the hotels to be of a lower standard than the usual Headwater type, we were pleasantly surprised. Our guide, Marinella, loves her job and it shows! Matera and Alberobello were fascinating, we ate in some delightful restaurants at Marinella's recommendation, the food was delicious and the wine tasting, dinner in a farmhouse and picnics all added to the enjoyment. We had a great group too!
By Mrs Patel on 03/05/2017
It was wonderful experience with a fantastic guide and walks
By Mr Sherrard on 03/05/2017
The Finca was excellent with varied & tasty food & comfortable rooms. The splendid location & walks were accurately graded & Nick the guide was very knowledgeable. He adjusted his pace to accommodate the slower walkers on the steep terrain. The programme was varied, but the days in Malaga & Nerja were not 'rest' days (this is not a criticism, but an observation)
By Mr Gibson on 02/05/2017
Spring time provided marvellous walking weather and a wonderful spread of colour across the countryside. Tavira is a delightful town (try Tavira Lounge - left by bridge; lovely small balcony overlooking river); and the Pousada provides cool style and quality. The walks vary in intensity (not quite as flat as expected) and scenery. Found the Monchique walks somewhat dull; the hotel dreary and rundown (the attached tapas bar across the road appeared to close at 6pm), indifferent food but some redemption in an excellent pool and sundeck - just right after a day's walk. Our two hard working guides Ricardo and Gabriel ensured our walks went smoothly (especially at the family run Medronho distillery with an excellent lunch and a souvenir bottle that proved marvellous joint lubrication! A holiday that allows the traveller to gain some experience and insight into Algarve scenery and life; go for it.
By Miss Chard on 02/05/2017
Great fun and the best possible place to learn cross country skiing
By Mr Burrell on 27/04/2017
Quite simply the best holiday we have had in several years. Great food, great scenery, helpful staff, activity and brilliant weather. Just what we needed. Thank you
By Mr Swingler on 26/04/2017
A thoroughly enjoyable and relaxing holiday. We booked for the beginning of April hoping for good walking weather and lots of spring flowers - it turned out to be an excellent choice.
By Mr Gough on 25/04/2017
We found this a very enjoyable April holiday, aided by lovely weather. We are only occasional cyclists, but we found the cycling quite manageable although a little challenging on the first day in the saddle. We were the first couple on this revised tour, and the first to use the route notes and did get lost occasionally. However, there were many cyclists around and someone always stopped and helped us get going again. Very friendly and helpful people. The hotels were generally good and well located. Figeures and Girona are very pleasant cities with plenty to do and see on the 'rest' days.
By Mr Chandler on 24/04/2017
The walking tour was a great way to really explore the countryside. It was comforting to know there was someone there if we got terribly lost or hurt.
By Miss Black on 24/04/2017
Costa Rica is a fascinating country with great scenery and amazing wildlife. The weather involves some rain, even in the dry season and some walks were hot and humid, making them harder work than might be expected from the distance covered. On some of the longer walks there were shorter options available. The first days walk was the least interesting and maybe some of the local guides could suggest something better. The 2 boot grading seems right. Some transfers are long but are through interesting countryside and in any case, are unavoidable. Alain was a great driver and Guierlmo a good guide and fund of information. Between the 2 of them they made sure we saw lots of wildlife we wouldn't have spotted ourselves.
If you enjoy birds and wildlife as well as the walking, we would highly recommend this holiday.
By Mr Hewitt on 24/04/2017
Beautiful walking in unspoilt limestone scenery. Fantastic bird walching opportunities. Comfortable hotel with hearty picnics and interesting evening meals. Antonio ensures that all aspects of a Headwater holiday are arranged with great efficiency.
By Mr Bateman on 24/04/2017
It was beautifully quiet in every way. Many flowers and birds. Excellent food. Friendly people.
By Mrs Tarry on 24/04/2017
An amazing holiday. We've visited Italy many times but Puglia was quite different to what we'd seen before. The colours, olive grove, vineyards, hilltop towns, architecture and the rest make this area a hidden gem.
By Mrs McCormick on 20/04/2017
Great holiday. The Ta Cenc Hotel is lovely, the Kempinski is homogenous but very nice. The Cornucopia is run by a lovely helpful chap but the rooms are dirty and tired, some of the towels I wouldn't even bother keeping to dry the dog with but the fact that they are put on the beds in the shape of swans is amusing, the chamber-maids shout the odds down the corridors at 8am every morning, the heating/air-conditioning/pool pump is noisy and goes all night (we moved rooms but the second one wasn't much better) and the food is awful. I personally don't want to get my own coffee out of a machine in the morning, or drink squash instead of fruit juice or eat fried eggs which have been cooked for 2 hours or more. Dinner isn't any better and despite being half board we ate in the village on our second and last night-a weeks holiday is too short to eat poor food ! That said the views are lovely and nothing is too much trouble for the lovely manager. I think that the Cornucopia is owned by the same person as the Ta Cenc in which case they need to 'up their game' at this hotel as it falls very far short of the Ta Cenc.
Gozo is lovely and we had a great holiday with our 2 teenage sons-cycling, walking, eating, drinking and generally relaxing. The weather was mixed but with the hotel spas, and the bikes we happily filled each day-the Citadella and the salt pans are worth visiting, the rest is just nice to pass through.
By Mrs Merry on 18/04/2017
Superb from start to finish. Excellent walking although challenging at times. Highly competent leaders. Very high standard of accommodation. Wonderful food beautifully presented. Delightful, welcoming hosts/walk leaders. I would stay here again
By Mrs Pattison on 11/04/2017
Full of admiration for the way Sue and David cook the meals, lead the walks, cater for individual needs and remain cheerful and welcoming throughout.
By Mr Kimber on 11/04/2017
Superb views when walking as well as lots of spring flowers and wildlife to enjoy. Excellent hotels and informative reps to help with local knowledge.
By Mr Newberry on 10/04/2017
An excellent overview of the whole of the Algarve, helped immensely by a superb guide.
By Mrs Collins on 10/04/2017
The head wind and the final summit to each of the towns to our accommodation were challenging. The March temperature was well suited to the distances and grade of holiday - mid summer experience would no doubt be different - more gruelling and therefore less enjoyable. We were very lucky with the weather - a chilly breeze but plenty of sunshine. The Casa Grande Hotel in Jerez gets our vote for the best hotel of our holiday. It is full of character and charm, the staff were all very welcoming and they served the best breakfast out of all our accommodation. Unfortunately we found the food at lunch and dinner was not inspiring, but that is not the fault of Headwater. We had 2 outstanding meals during our holiday.
By Mr Roberts on 10/04/2017
Winter Activity Holiday at Geilo, Norway. Excellent location. Parts of Hotel a little tired but public areas are clean, overall quaint and full of character. Food was very good and plentiful. Activities were as described and instructors and equipment were excellent. Overall an excellent holiday.
By Mr Parr on 10/04/2017
This was the first week of the season and it was cold for three days. The hotel bedroom had heating but the bathroom did not. The communal areas of the hotel were cold. Obviously accommodation in this area is designed to keep heat out. If the weather is not good there are limited opportunities here. especially as the local museum was shut for refurbishment for the whole season. The hotel staff were very helpful and friendly. We found the walks quite challenging, the directions were mostly good but on one occasion (the end of the Ermita walk) the alternative route back to the hotel was impossible to find. The path was completely invisible and we had to walk back along the road. The scenery, birdlife and wild flowers were wonderful. We hired bikes from the hotel one day and cycled along the Via Verde (disused railway track) which was easy cycling with interesting views. Another day we took the bus to Cordoba which was cheap, reliable and well worth while. We enjoyed this holiday but felt that overall both the hotel and the village were not places to be If the sun isn't shining.
By Mr Bumfrey on 10/04/2017
An ideal time to visit this area and enjoy the spring flowers and butterflies which are abundant on all the walks. The weather was perfect for this type of holiday and the hotels very good. The GPX tracks supplied were very useful.
By Mrs Lloyd on 07/04/2017
Really very nice Hotels, very good views in the mountains and the leisure facilities all very good. We have had many holidays with Headwaters, in many different areas, all excellent, we especially like the included car, which enables us to visit places that other tourists do not visit.
By Ms Douglas on 05/04/2017
We had a wonderful week, lack of snow notwithstanding. Alfa Soleil staff very helpful and full of suggestions for walking to replace cross country ski ing. The trip to the Hockenhorn being especially memorable. Very good meals at Alfa Soleil..
By Mrs Turton on 05/04/2017
Venabu is a well run and comfortable hotel. The skiing programme was well organised and thought out catering for different levels of experience with a choice of tours offered each day.
By Mr Turner on 04/04/2017
The toughest Headwater cycling holiday I have been on, due to the preponderance of off road some of which was quite rough and steep, plus the fact that for two and a half days of the three days cycling there was a strong cold headwind, therefore I think the grading should be changed.
By Ms Singleton on 29/03/2017
Venabu Felljhotel was excellent. What it lacked in glamour was more than made up for by the quality of the food and the excellent staff and ski guides who were so friendly and helpful. The whole experience was wonderful. My first snow holiday and I would definitely go again.
By Mrs Leitch on 29/03/2017
Super walking holiday at Casa Carascal. Lovely scenery and beautiful walks. Our hosts David and and Sue were so friendly and helpful and such excellent guides. Very flexible in adapting the walks with the weather conditions. Parcent lovely sleepy village. Wonderful holiday, excellent company with fellow walkers and David and Sue and Alice the dog.
By Mr Hay on 29/03/2017
Excellent accommodation & location, good guide & good variety of walks.
By Mrs Jarvis on 29/03/2017
The finca el cerillo was in a spectacularly beautiful place. On top of this the owners and staff were delightful and highly efficient. The food at the finca was quite superb and the arrangements at local restaurants were very good too. Elaine, our guide, was extremely knowledgeable, kind and thoughtful. The whole week was filled with interesting walks, history and culture, and was wonderfully managed. It was like staying as a house guest with very kind friends. We will definitely look at Headwater holidays again.
By Mrs Griffiths on 28/03/2017
We could relax because everything ran like clockwork. We were very lucky with our walking companions, we enjoyed thier company and navigated and ate together every day.
By Miss Styles on 24/03/2017
Excellent holiday for first skiiers. The guides were brilliant and the hotel kept us well fed.
By Mr Oakley on 23/03/2017
The holiday at Venue totally lived up to 'the promise'. The skiing was excellent due to the location and the professional ability of the guides. Great holiday to go on ones' own as everyone is there for the same reason and generally with a similar background in terms of fitness and interests. When not skiing the Fjellhotel provided excellent food, a very welcome sauna and even yoga classes. With everything included in the cost the holiday was extremely good value for money. Would definitely return without question.
By Mrs Baillie on 22/03/2017
The holiday was well organised, the hotel was comfortable and friendly with delicious food and the skiing experience was fantastic. The ski instructors were attentive and patient and the scenery absolutely stunning.
By Mr Belson on 22/03/2017
Regular vistor to Venabu. Great skiing, good international friends, good guides and good food. What more do you need?
By Mr Sayles on 22/03/2017
Good: - Hotel, food, weather, X-country skiing area, ski team guides and ski prep. organisation. 'Wicked' VIEWS.
By Mrs Payne on 21/03/2017
Another great weeks skiing with Steve. Although the snow conditions were not the best Steve ensured we skied the best routes every day. He is a master juggler ensuring everyone's abilities are met. Nothing ever seems too much trouble
The food at the Xander remains good, however at times the waiting staff seemed stretched.
The hotel is very clean, however rooms & bathrooms could do with updating
By Mr Payne on 21/03/2017
Venabu is an excellent Cross Country skiing holiday for anybody from beginners to experienced skiers. With a good network of tracks right from the door, plus guides with the knowledge and skills to teach beginners or lead off piste tours. This is backed up by a comfortable hotel with excellent food.
By Mrs Tuck on 21/03/2017
Stating at Garb--Salt pans--Marlsaform then bus to Victoria. The walking instructions for the Azure window are not that clear and could be improved, easy to end up on the cliff path which can be a bit scary if it's a little windy. The hotel could sell bus passes, rather than having to go to Victoria. The three bays walk from Quala and ending at Ramla is an excellent alternative. Get the bus from Ramla to Xewxija and walk back to hotel. The small cafe by the main bus station in Victoria offers a brilliant takeaway salad, sandwich and is very cheap
By Dr Billingham on 20/03/2017
Great flexibility of winter activities, as I wanted to try cross country skiing, without being committed to it. I joined the winter walking group which I really enjoyed.
By Mr Norris on 20/03/2017
Good but if we followed the walks exactly , they were not long enough for us given that the terrain was not at all demanding. However we did manage to add on extras each day which made the walking better.
By Mr Hall on 17/03/2017
Well organized with full-day outings and enjoyable on my own. Excellent and interesting hotel. A bit pricey but worth the extra because I could choose a local airport.
By Mrs Lancaster on 17/03/2017
Lovely walks with lots of variety. We particularly enjoyed the coastline. Our rep, Ludmilla, was very welcoming, personable and helpful.
By Mr Holmes on 16/03/2017
All travel arrangements went smoothly. The big plus was the hotel: the excellent staff, the high quality food; comfortable bed; the great location. We had a wonderful week of walking and cross-country skiing
By Dr Garwood on 14/03/2017
Steve and Martin are excellent, very helpful and knowledgeable guides. They both know the area very well. Despite less snow than in previous years, Steve was very accommodating in where we skied and adapted his plans for the day depending on the snow conditions when needed so overall I had an excellent skiing week. Steve is a patient teacher and I improved again this year! Martin knows the area very well and provided excellent walks every day for my wife who was on a walking week. The hotel is very well situated, rooms are very spacious, the hotel is always very clean and the food is good particularly the buffet breakfasts and buffet salad bar in the evenings. There is a reasonable choice of meals in the evening and there is always a fish or vegetarian option. For those who get back early, the hotel also provides drinks, cakes or a hot meal between 2 and 4!
By Mr Knight on 14/03/2017
Very comfortable hotel with a very good, plentiful, and varied daily buffet. The guides were very thoughtful and trips they arranged excellent.
By Ms Arnott on 14/03/2017
My first holiday with headwater - well organised and good service from agents. I travelled alone, and found the whole thing a very easy intro into x-country skiing. While Norweigans of all ages are skiing, my group was definitively middle aged and up. Staff at the hotel were ready to engage & just overall very pleasant. Guides were also easy to get on with altho I would add that while all were very knowledgeable & helpful, some were not so good at actually instructing. If you're a competent downhill skier my advice would be don't go in the beginners group, you'll be bored within 30mins because you already know what skis and poles and balancing feels like. Groups were large, if you want to experience space and peace going off by yourself or with some buddies in the afternoon would do the job. There seemed to be a good choice of equipment, I was able to change my boots after a day or so to get ones which were more comfortable. Also seemed to be in good condition (judging by the boots being clean, newish, not smelly in any way!). location of hotel is excellent for skiing out either in the groups or alone. it's as beautiful as you hope for. And handy to be able to walk down to supermarket. Meals are a buffet - the food was plentiful, delicious, and varied particularly if you eat both meat and fish. I was surprised how good it was, and lots of new things to try - the description given by Headwater of the fermented fish is offputting, but really it's not scary as long you don't stick your nose right into it! Like everyone says booze is pricey, and there's no common area to drink your own with other people (not that's allowed anyway...). I was in a double room in the older wing and it was disappointing: heating which wasn't reliable, thin curtains you could shoot peas through, duvet was short so it would cover feet or shoulders but not both (I'm 5'8'), an open electric bar heater in the bathroom, the shower curtain sticking to your legs scenario, no products except showergel - not even the ubiquitous 'bonnet de douche'. Having said that, I wasn't spending much time in my room but if there were two people it would be a bit of a squeeze finding room for clothes towels etc. Decent quality towels though. There's a separate ladies sauna and if you're prepared to walk over the corridor, up some stairs you can cool down on a tiny deck. Nice.
By Mrs Hopwood on 14/03/2017
Gozo is a small, friendly Island with dramatic coastal walks, a lush, flower-filled interior and beautiful churches. Headwater's excellent walking guides combined with Gozo's efficient bus service enabled us to easily visit nearly all of the Island. The Hotel Ta Cenc was a very comfortable base. The only down-side to Gozo is the 'traditional' shooting and netting of small migratory birds. Avoid the shooting season and you will enjoy a lovely holiday with relaxed walking.
By Mrs North on 10/03/2017
Puglia is a fabulous area of Italy. A great variety of terrain with scenic routes.
By Mrs Shaw on 09/03/2017
Great way to see Costa Rica despite long days in minibus.Excellent variety of birds, flora and fauna with knowledgeable guides.
By Mr Henson on 09/03/2017
Good venue, dedicated leader who was v. Flexible & ensured we all got the maximum from the holiday. Meals were not as a group so possibly better for couples than singles, although Steve worked hard to ensure everyone's needs were met. Hotel restaurant staff & bar v. busy and somewhat inflexible possibly as a result.
By Mrs Shipman on 09/03/2017
Another very enjoyable holiday x c skiing in the Leutasch area. Steve's knowledge and experience of the area and his dedication as a guide enabled us to get the most out of our week. As we had a late afternoon flight home we opted to walk on the morning of our return, rather than ski, and this was a perfect end to a very good week.
By Dr Davies on 09/03/2017
No snow so we did walking instead until the last days. Hotel tried to arrange skiing for us elsewhere but defeated by weather. New years eve dinner and entertainment were fabulous.
By Ms Zouganeli on 09/03/2017
Lovely area for beginner and intermediate skiers, excellent food, relaxed atmosphere, delightful sociable environment to make great friends; great for solo travelers.
By Mr Wilks on 09/03/2017
Pleasant way of exploring the country which otherwise could have been quite difficult to access. Walks led by a charming and well-informed guide who did his best to give us interesting local insights and who was very thoughtful and considerate. He was also very patient in trying to resolve people's difficulties.
By Mr Patten on 09/03/2017
I am writing g this review whilst still on holiday.
I have been wanting to give this 4 starts but a series of issues has lead me to 2 stars only.
The flight and travel details have been fine together with the car rentals, except you need to be aware that on Martinique the hire is for 5 days exactly so do not late return.
The notes and walking information are ok to a point but not sufficiently honed. There are some errors and walking options are not particularly helpful as there is far more information available once looking at the interpretation panels. You can make much better use of each day by a bit of careful planning and this you will need to do due to the heat.
There is a substantial amount of driving, often 2 hours each day, in heavy traffic with roadworks. The roads are narrow and twisty. If you take a picnic, I mean who wants another hot meal at midday, you will need to allocate time to find a boulangerie and supermarket either the day before or early in the morning. And the French go manic in the morning driving everywhere and rushing to car park spaces.
The hotel on Martinique is just too upmarket. The rooms are really hot sheds of wood with no veranda and the shower is a minuscule corner of the toilet. The main evening meal does not start until 7.30pm and service is so slow you do not finish your meal Until 9.30pm. The menu is not varied and repeats after two days. It is very pretentious and the kitchen is not efficient. I did not like the cuisine and you barely were able to eat one of your 5 a day for dinner., whereas on Guadeloupe it is a totally different story. Lovely tropical tastes and efficient meals served. Homely attitude and comfortable rooms with large beds and decent shower.
You need to plan your day well since it becomes very hot in the afternoon between 12.00 and 15.00. This means early starts and relaxing at midday or being high up a mountain where it is cooler.
This is a good concept by Headwater but a better hotel on Martinique and a few more notes of advice would enable domestic and planning arrangements to go smoother.
By Ms Whitaker on 09/03/2017
Very enjoyable holiday. Booking process easy and efficient. Transfers via ferry very well organised. Hotel was comfortable and staff extremely pleasant and helpful. Walks as per grading with options on some and they took us to all the island's attractions.
By Ms Edwards on 09/03/2017
Excellent holiday with great guide and excellent hotel. The walks were quite hard, mainly due to the nature of the terrain.
By Mr Hunt on 09/03/2017
Varied 2 boot walking with excellent well informed local guide who went the extra mile. The Parador accommodation and location were a delightful experience.
By Mrs Bowen on 09/03/2017
Mostly very enjoyable. Disappointed by room in first hotel not having ocean view. Group was too big for everyone to hear the guide easily and possibly dangerous on top of the mountain when picnicking with a large number. Also one day we left hotel at 9am and returned at 7.30 as walk took longer than planned and lunch was started at 3pm so after tour of vineyard which we felt should have been curtailed we arrived back exhausted to shower and have Kate dinner. Most of group disappointed with this though walk had been lovely.
By Dr MacMillan on 08/03/2017
Excellent centre for xcskiing, both on and off trails. Could ski with guided group or without guide. Very comfortable hotel with friendly atmosphere and staff, and wonderful food.
By Mrs Rowland on 08/03/2017
Venabu is an excellent location for a cross-country skiing holiday. The hotel is very comfortable, the food is excellent, and the welcome from the family is warm and genuine. There are ski trails and tracks to suit all abilities, and plenty of guides are available. The equipment is good quality, with metal edged skis which are suitable for tracks and off-piste. We had a wonderful week in Venabu and I'd happily go back tomorrow and do it all over again! We had learnt to ski while living in Sweden 40 years ago and had not been on skis since. We had no idea if we would remember any techniques. On the last day I did a 25km 'safari' and my husband did 17km before lunch, so we felt very pleased with our progress!
By Mr Richards on 07/03/2017
Portugal in February - quiet but not deserted, good walking and perfect temperature and conditions.
By Mrs McInnes on 15/02/2017
A wonderful exploration of the Dorset countryside.Very friendly locals,good hotels,very good cycles provided by Roy Griffiths from sign post cycling who gave us an extra days use of the cycles at no charge.
By Mr Carter on 08/02/2017
An excellent holiday for cross country ski beginners. Fabulous location. Great food. Small group. Helpful instructors.
By Ms Ross on 07/02/2017
Another great trip to Venabu, everything up to the usual standard. I particularly like the inclusion of Pilates and Yoga sessions, along with the option of booking a Massage. Good for tired muscles!
By Mrs Collins on 27/01/2017
Andalucia has a lot to offer. The cycling aspect of the holiday was not as enjoyable as previous trips we have done with you. Time of year is most certainly part of the equation. The hotels you chose were pleasant enough but didn't quite have the wow factor we have become accustomed to from previous t
The climbs to Arcos and Vejer were very taxing at the end of the day though that has nothing to do with you. The route notes leave a lot to be desired and as soon as you go off road, there is not enough detail and it is quite easy to go wrong. Even the miles meter supplied with one bike was inaccurate, so we really didn't have great confidence in relying on the notes and the maps you supply are awful. We had to resort mostly to. Barry's iPad. All the towns were great
By Mr Daines on 27/01/2017
Tenerife has dramatic scenery & provides enjoyable, reasonably challenging hiking in a wonderful climate. Garachico is a gem of a town with lovely restaurants and the Quinta Roja provides lovely accommodation in a central location,
There is a quite a bit of driving involved on often winding roads, so this holiday would suit those who would see this an enjoyable aspect of the trip.
Some of the walking I would see at the upper end of 2 boot, not because of the distances but due to the mountainous nature of the terrain.
All in all a very enjoyable holiday!
By Ms Smith on 24/01/2017
One week's cross-country skiing in Leutasch, Austria. Magical setting which prolonged the traditional White Christmas experience. Great tuition and guided skiing in stunning countryside.
By Mr Henderson on 14/01/2017
A great holiday with an excellent guide and hotel in a very scenic area.
By Mr Leonard on 14/01/2017
Sue and I had never tried Nordic skiing before, but with Steve the ever helpful guide providing tips along the way and his encyclopaedic knowledge of the valley and the loipes around the area, we are sure to try it again. The Xander provides comfortable rooms, but out does itself at meal times. The breakfast, afternoon tea and dinner, in reality constitute full board. All that is 'required' is the occasional hot chocolate to warm up mid ski. A spectacular valley, and an active holiday that can be as hard or easy physically as you wish, and all the while Steve will facilitate mixed groups with ease and plenty of laughter along the way.
By Ms Fox on 14/01/2017
This holiday delivers in all respects.
By Dr Tysseling on 11/01/2017
On the whole the holiday was a very good experience, and as our second holiday with Headwater , didn't disappoint.
There were just 2 negatives I would like to highlight.
The Breakfast at La Vista Medina was very disappointing (although the evening meal was very tasty.)
On the second day of cycling I believe there was an error in the cycle notes. Consequently we unwittingly added 13km of muddy, sandy and generally difficult terrain to our trip, which ended up with us back where we started. It says at one point 'go left at the fork by white house with grey bottom' I think it should have said (DONT go left at the fork by white house with grey bottom!' If we had continued straight ahead (which we did after our detour) the rest of the directions then were exactly appropriate.
The rest of the route notes on all other days, and before and after this appeared clear and easy to follow. I assume there was a typo in transcription ?!
Dear Dr Tysseling,
Thank you for taking the time to provide your post-holiday feedback.
It was great to read you enjoyed your holiday overall.
We were however sorry to read of the issues you encountered with the route notes on day 2. Since receiving your feedback, the route notes have been checked and updated as required. We would like to thank you for pointing out this error and apologise for the inconvenience this caused you. We were also sorry to hear of your disappointment with the breakfast served at La Vista Medina. We will continue to work with our suppliers to ensure they deliver the high standards of service and accommodation we expect.
In closing, we would like to thank you for choosing to travel with Headwater this winter and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater Customer service team
By Mrs Cornthwaite on 10/01/2017
We spent Christmas in the Fjellhotel at Venabu and learned to cross country ski. The tuition and guidance was excellent. The area is perfect for skiing with well maintained ski pistes, ski runs and signposts which clearly show distances travelled and points of interest, it is a really beautiful and unspoilt area. Maps are supplied so it is impossible to get lost, well thought through. The ski guides are excellent, friendly and versatile. The food is exceptionally good with many healthy options and cuisine for all tastes. Our only disappointment was the room for which I had paid an upgrade after taking advice from a Headwater representative by phone before booking. It was very tired and drab, poor decor and no facilities as advertised, such as Minibar, Hairdryer, TV and Wi-Fi. (Wi-fi is only obtainable in the main lounge of hotel). I checked twice with reception, that this was indeed an 'Upgraded room!' I would advise taking a head torch to
read/see clearly for cards/hand crafts, as the lighting in the hotel lounge is very poor and there are 18 hours of darkness at this time of year.
By Mr Sturdee on 07/01/2017
Thoroughly enjoyable XC skiing in a stunning mountainous location and at the end of every day a very comfortable hotel awaited us.
By Dr Paterson on 07/01/2017
Fantastic holiday in a lovely setting
By Beaumont on 07/01/2017
Martin was an excellent guide very knowledgeable and enthusiastic. The walks he planned were varied and suited to the days weather.
By Mr Hordern on 07/01/2017
This was a brilliant holiday away from the crowds, aggro and danger associated with downhill skiing. I seldom go away alone but the company of like minded people was great. Food excellent, location brilliant - what more can I say. Cross country skiing is hard work - you need to be fit to enjoy it.
By Ms Foster on 03/01/2017
A great holiday. The skiing was excellent and the quality of the guiding superb. We were really lucky to have great weather. The extra activities available by the hotel (snow shoeing, night skiing, horse drawn sled ride etc.) really added to the experience. The food was plentiful and, as vegetarians, we were well catered for - although the food was a bit richer than I am used to. I really liked the fact that we did lots of off-track skiing. The final day's trip to the hut was a real highlight. The hotel is traditional and some of its rooms are in dire need of an upgrade - that said, the staff are great, it's a good location and the beds were comfortable.
By Mr Corlett on 03/01/2017
I was fortunate to have absolutely perfect weather and low wind levels for my cycling trip to southern portugal.. a very enjoyable experience and would definitely do a repeat.
By Ms Glanfield on 28/12/2016
I can't recommend this holiday enough. Exceptional hosts, who are also the walking guides, great accommodation and wonderful walks. Didn't have to worry about going alone and the group were all of a similar walking ability. The scenery and choice of routes were lovely, and the difficulty rating is accurate for the terrain. We saw quite a lot of wildlife and the area will be stunning with wild flowers. I will definitely return and would plan to do a 2/3 or 3 boot trip next time.
By Mr Bryant on 14/12/2016
Great holiday did not like the Hotel in Kobarid, we had a massive dining room no use to us, bed was really bad, toilet and shower of 2 star standard at best. You could not shower because there was no fixing for the shower head. The toilet had sealant around it like a two old kid had applied and the bath had been repaired such a bodge. bear pipes for radiator coming out of the floor chipped the tiles and a bath plug that did not fit the bath. Very very poor it was room 100. Breakfast was the worst of the hotels, evening meal was ok. This is probably the worst hotel for accommodation I stayed in Europe.
Dear Mr Bryant,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday feedback. It sounds like you had a great holiday in Slovenia. We were however sorry to read of your disappointment with Hotel Hvala in Kobarid. With this in mind, we have reviewed the feedback received over the course of the summer and from this have made the decision to replace this hotel for the 2017 season. We hope you agree this improvement will continue to enhance this holiday for future customers.
In closing, we would like to thank you for your constructive comments and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater Customer Service Team
By Mr King on 07/12/2016
Great fun, lots of fresh air and lovely food.
By Mrs Kings on 07/12/2016
Great holiday. The cycling was easy with the odd tougher bits but they were short lived. Varied scenery with coast and countryside. The notes/directions were at times diddicult to follow and really need updating because signs have fallen down or gone altogether and new roads have been built with new layouts so the notes are out of date. Monopoli is really lovely Palazzo Indelli is well situated right in the pretty main square. The rooms vary so if you are booking a standard room ask for the larger ones at the back of the hotel because the one we were given at the end of our trip was tiny and noisy being on the side at the front. Corte Altavilla is nice too but the staff on reception were unhelpful and grumpy. I am a coeliac and despite telling them in advance it was the only hotel that did not provide anything for me at breakfast other than fruit. The restaurant in the hotel for the evening was very good. Alberobella unfortunately has rather sold its soul and is very over commercialised. The Trulli are nice but we would have preferred some outside space as they are rather dark. Masseria Salamina is fabulous we had a huge room and you really feel like you are staying in a castle. The swimming pool was lovely and we really enjoyed our stay here. Overall a thoroughly enjoyable trip and we are now looking for another one!
By Dr May on 07/12/2016
We did have a good holiday but experience could have been much better for reasons stated above and below.
By Dr Penney on 07/12/2016
Excellent organisation and friendliness of staff/guides at Headwater. We opted for cycling in Burgundy with the gastronomic option. We're all foodies to a degree but found it was all just too much of a good thing and relished the thought of beans on toast when we got back to the UK. The problem with 5 course meals for a group is that when the meal's over it's time for bed! A wholesome beef casserole would have gone down a treat with time afterwards for a drink or two. The bikes were great and fit for purpose, most of them new.
By Mrs Norfolk on 07/12/2016
Lovely holiday in beautiful part of world
By Mr Lomax on 07/12/2016
A wonderful holiday in a beautiful region of Italy. The walks were challenging and the guide notes very occasionally confusing or inaccurate but we got through! The hotel was lovely and very comfortable, the owner Ercole was helpful and kind. Two small gripes! Each night at dinner we were asked if we want mineral water but we were not advised that it cost â‚¬3 a bottle until the end of the holiday. A small thing but it would have been nice to know. Also, the picnic lunch was a little disappointing. I would have expected a small bottle of water and perhaps some chocolate or biscuit but then then breakfast and dinner were extremely substantial.
By Mrs Ballantyne on 07/12/2016
Sue and Dave ,our hosts and guides looked after us extremely well ,both with their cooking and with the guided walks.I would thoroughly recommend Casa Carrascal .The walking was quite strenuous but the views were superb.
By Mr Stevenson on 07/12/2016
Varied walking with except for the first morning no need for a lift to the start of the walk although limited opportunities to find drinks or nibbles en route.The final day was longer than we anticipated and we did flag down a passing taxi to take us up the huge hill to Volterra.The hotels varied but with good accommodation, views and the food was generally good. The best meal by far was in the agrotourismo down the road from Hotel Pescille (3 * with no restaurant) which was a real gem as the hotel was a fair walk from San Gimignano and avoided taxis at night.
By Ms Butterworth on 07/12/2016
An excellent location, with good views, well appointed rooms and excellent food. The guide Nick was very knowledgeable. We would repeat in a different season to see the wildlife.
By Mr Riley on 06/12/2016
We now realise that the weather in Andalucia is fickle at this time of year. Off road cycling on tracks was never an option because of earlier rain in the area and the major storm we encountered.
However we thoroughly enjoyed seeing the beautiful countryside, meeting local people and enjoyed eating local food and drinking gorgeous wine. Thank you.
By Mrs Sanderson on 30/11/2016
Excellent route with just the right amount of easy flat cycling and some more strenuous hilly sections. Beautiful part of France with plenty to see and do whilst cycling. Lots of good lunch options too. Another well put together holiday which we thoroughly enjoyed.
By Mr McIlraith on 29/11/2016
This was the very best cycling holiday we have had. Sicily was a fantastic venue with lots to wonder at.
By Mr Tennant on 29/11/2016
Great experience but slightly inconsistent and ambiguous route instructions which are very difficult to relate to the overall large maps
By Mr Aung on 29/11/2016
Cycling in Umbria- need to review road going down from Gualdo Cattaneo down the hill to Torre del colle. Steep 15% average with turns .High risk even for reasonably experienced cyclist.Could an alternative route be looked at even if the roads are busier?
By Mr Ponting on 29/11/2016
A well organised cycling tour thoroughly enjoyed by us both. Hotels were very well selected for the type of holiday, with much good food to enjoy whilst there.
The luggage transportation was good and the Headwater Rep, Steve was amazing! well done to him for all he did for us!
By Dr Haberman on 29/11/2016
Beautiful and varied walks. Good level of stamina required. Istria is very quiet but local people are very friendly eg a farmer gave us some apples when we resting (and obviously) tired.
In the first walk, there was no shade. Walk 2 is longer but a little easier. It would make more sense to swap over walks 1 and 2 to allow travellers to acclimatise.
We had a problem with the packed lunches. We mentioned on the application form that we do not eat meat. I rang Headwater the week before the holiday to make sure that this was known and had been passed on to the 2 hotels providing packed lunches. I was told that this would be done. On arrival, we found out that neither hotel knew of our requirements. Clearly, there is communication breakdown.
By Mrs Ward on 29/11/2016
Overall a very enjoyable holiday in great locations with good accommodation. The local representives were helpful and cycles and equipment excellent.
* the route guides need to be revisited generally, but specifically in relation to routes through towns. (If you require more specific information, I don't mind speaking in more depth about this.
* The Garbi hotel is satisfactory as a transit hotel....an over night on the way in and out. But should NOT be used for additional add on days. The place is soulless and despite us upgrading it felt no better than some travel lodges we have stayed in. The hotel has great potential because of its location and basic facilities, but it has passed it's best.
* The El Castell hotel needs to be looked at carefully by you for the future. If it continues to develop its wedding reception business which it is doing from information I gleened during our stay then your guests are going to be side lined with regards to service if they find themselves there at the same time as a wedding. They currently do not have the facilities to cater for both.
On arrival after a long day cycling we were told that we could only be booked in for dinner at 9pm ....in the poolside bar. They made as good a job as possible with the space they had. But this is a 4 star hotel which didn't come cheap especially with an upgrade. The other issue with the hotel is that there was not one scap of written information in the room about any of the hotels facilities including opening and closing times. This caused a potential problem on the second day when upon returning from another days cycling we we advised that the earliest dinner booking was 8.30pm. We quickly changed with the intention of getting a snack from the poolside bar. This was at almost 3.30pm and we were advised that the bar did not provide food after 3.30. As it happens the chef was cleaning down and I think took pity on us and provided us with a snack.
By Mr Dent on 29/11/2016
Really attractive area,great hotels.We interspersed some extra days for additional relaxation and chance to visit additional restaurants for dinner.Fonti was weakest for dinner but other 3 were all excellent. Terrific wine tasting and dining at San Gimiagno
By Mr Ford on 29/11/2016
We enjoyed this holiday but with the following proviso in comparison with the Footsteps of St Francis Umbria which we did last year there was much more hard surface and road walking particularly on the last day.
Our first and last Hotel San Limo was without doubt the poorest hotel that we have experienced on a Headwater holiday. there was no atmosphere in the restaurant the staff both at dinner and breakfast did not give a friendly or welcoming approach. We actually decided to eat out in Volterra on the final night rather than eat at the hotel. The room we were given 403 was supposed to be a superior room it was the smallest of all the rooms we had and the only thing that could have made superior was that it had a small balcony.
Hotel Relias della Rovere whilst the food was excellent and the room good, the pool and the pool area was very poor, grass uncut and pool a little dated
By Mrs Handley on 29/11/2016
Challenging, enjoyable walking in a scenic setting.Easy access to visit Sienna, Florence and the small historical towns along the way a real bonus.
By Mr Harris on 29/11/2016
Outstandingly beautiful area with plenty of fantastic walks. The location could not be better and the scenery is absolutely breathtaking. The hotel was great with very friendly and helpful staff. The food was excellent - varied, tasty and creatively presented. We had glorious weather for the entire week so we were lucky and could get out and about every day. The information provided by Peter and the other staff was very useful and helped us to get the most from our time. We liked the packed lunch buffet which really helped given the prices of things generally. Similarly the transport pass which gave us free travel on cable cars and buses. Getting there and back was easy and travel very smooth.
The only slight downside was that our room was rather small, particularly the bathroom which was very cramped, and generally not as luxurious as other Headwater hotels we've stayed in. I realise that Switzerland is a very expensive country and this holiday is very good value so it's probably a compromise to keep the holiday affordable. It certainly didn't spoil our stay. We had a wonderful time - thank you Headwater and Alfa Soleil.
By Ms Millar on 29/11/2016
Organisation was excellent unfortunately the route notes were poor leading to us losing our way a couple of times. Luckily the guide was very knowledgeable. She talked us through the section through the Fjord. Once we decided not to cycle that part she kindly agreed to transport us for this section. The route description of the Fjord did not include that this was a busy section with very limited space and no where to push the bikes if we decided that we could not manage the hills. A real omission of Headwater. Our middle hotel room while being comfortable had a locked interconnecting door. Unfortunately the only small child in the hotel was in the next door room which meant that we could not sleep in once the child was awake which was very early. The other two hotels were excellent
By Lor Butler on 29/11/2016
Headwater had found an excellent base in a lovely region of Italy and the walks were just right for us
By Mr Hockin on 29/11/2016
Was exactly what it said on the can! - it fulfilled our expectations.
By Mr Runciman on 29/11/2016
The holiday certainly lived up to its name: Contrasts of Puglia. We enjoyed beautiful places both in town and in country. Weather conditions ranged from bright sunshine and blue skies to thunder-storm deluges --- but with the offer of alternative transport on the wettest days. Italian food was wonderful. Overall, it was a memorable week, and we are looking forward to a next time.
By Mrs Billington on 29/11/2016
Alberto made the holiday and went over and above the call of duty.
By Mrs Elliott on 29/11/2016
Suited us well as a mixture of cycling plus time to relax. We cycled each day and were pleased we visited the suggested towns. Pools at the hotels a great advantage. Always a gamble finding a lunch venue in unknown villages but we never had a bad meal all week.
I think we found only two signposts missing but it was easy to work the route out.
By Mrs Burns on 29/11/2016
Good introduction to the area. Would have been better to have a hotel in/nearer Dubrovnik Old Town and to have had the opportunity to wander around by oneself
By Mrs Hewson on 29/11/2016
We had another great holiday with Headwater. The walks and the scenery in the Tarn Gorge are stunning. I would class some of the walks as strenuous and adventurous , sometimes verging on being '3 boot'. The Hotel de la Muse enjoys a marvellous location overlooking the Tarn river and on occasion you can watch the vultures and herons fly whilst having dinner on the terrace. The hotel is excellent with spacious, clean, light rooms and large airy communal lounges/ spaces, great food and friendly staff.
Local village of Rozier is quaint. On Monday night the hotel arranges for guests to eat in a local restaurant in Rozier where we enjoyed gourmet food and very friendly staff. THe sandwich shop on the corner of the village also good.
We came by train from the UK to Avignon which is a very interesting city, well worth a visit. It is about a 4 to 5 hour drive from there to Rozier.
All in all another memorable holiday.
By Mrs Greenland on 29/11/2016
I found the walking varied and challenging at times but the outstanding scenery and peace and location of hotels made the effort worth while. An unforgettable experience.
By Mr Hughes on 29/11/2016
We had a great week touring Piedmont on our pushbikes Most of the days rides were quite challenging with some steep climbs but fortunately the distances we travelled were quite short We were blessed with fantastic weather in September so the secret was to set off promptly after a great breakfast each day to get to your destination before mid-afternoon and the hottest part of the day
The standard of hotels is very good although the air conditioning in a couple of them was not really very effective The hosts & locals were all very friendly whenever we stopped or needed directions The pre-arranged meals were all of a high standard and there are plenty of excellent places for lunch on the routes
The roads were always pretty much traffic free with occasional tractors & trailers passing laden with grapes
The guest exclusive secluded pool at the Albergo Castiglione deserves a special mention & I will remember our picnic lunch by the pool brought down by the hotel owner & two beautiful daughters on a baking hot day for a long time
All the route plans were accurate & realistic with several options on some days The bikes themselves worked well and the support team Dan & Cat were discreet but attentive
Finally the food, every meal was enjoyable ranging from a delightful local trattoria in the village to the award winning castle. No matter how hard you try I suspect you will eat too much of it! All the hosts seemed happy to advise you & would often let you drink it by the glass rather than the whole bottle if you wanted
This was an excellent holiday & I think reflects Headwaters long experience in organising these sort of trips Well Done
By Mr Graham on 29/11/2016
Great hotels, exquisite dinners, well-described walks
By Mrs Craig on 29/11/2016
This was our best holiday so far with headwater. Each hotel was better than the last. The hotel Le Clos was quaint with lovely breakfasts served in the garden . A new owner was taking over when we were there. Le Deux Chevres was excellent, a very comfortable room and excellent breakfasts and packed lunch. The Chateau Sainte Sabine was stunning. Our room was beautiful with a lovely view over the park .
We cycled every day. From Gevrey Chambertin we cycled into Dijon on our 'rest day' . At Sainte Sabine we did the suggested cycle. On our extra day at Beaune we cycled into town along the cycle path. We were glad that we had booked the extra day to recover at Le Clos. Beaune was very interesting .
All the meals were excellent and well earned! The transport to restaurants, when required, well organised.The distances were doable by 2 slightly elderly occasional cyclists! There are two steep climbs but the views are worth it and offset by some easier stretches by the picturesque canal .
By Mr Armstrong on 29/11/2016
See the box above.
By Ms Tonge on 29/11/2016
Very good week's holiday in a beautiful area of France.
The walking was varied and the distances quite long -we found the 2 boot walks tough enough in the heat.
Hotels were all in good locations and the food was good-the restaurant where dinner was taken at Argeles Gazost deserves particular mention for its excellent food.
By Ms Pye on 29/11/2016
Perfect. What far better than we could have imagined. The accommodation, food and quality of the cycles were all excellent.
By Dr MacFarlane on 29/11/2016
The key is the bikes : they were a little 'tired' and end of season. The support from Mimmo was though excellent
By Mrs Duguid on 29/11/2016
A fantastic location with plenty of variety in the walks. If you want a break from walking there are opportunities to visit to local towns/villages, or to relax at the hotel. Be prepared to deal with high temperatures, even in September!
By Mrs Dibben on 29/11/2016
Our guide was really knowledgeable, helpful and friendly. She led us on some excellent walks with stunning views. If you like organised group holidays and walking I would recommend this company.
By Mrs Jones on 29/11/2016
An excellent experience discovering a fascinating region which is still mostly unspoilt by mass tourism.
By Mr Brown on 29/11/2016
Excellent scenery with a nice mix of challenging walking and more relaxed days. Montenegro is a really beautiful country and the guide really knows it well.
By Mrs Steane on 29/11/2016
Montenegro must have some of the most beautiful, unspoilt landscapes in Europe. The walks are a good distance, mostly through woodland, but with some spectacular mountain top views as well. In September, the temperature was about right, although we did have some thunderstorms and rain, fortunately mostly at night. I have never seen so many varieties of fungi as there were in Durmitor National Park and the fields were carpeted with Autumn crocuses and the woods speckled with wild cyclamen. The group of 12 got on really well and our local guide was delightful and looked after us brilliantly. The food was delicious and we were able to buy wild berries, dried mushrooms and smoked ham and cheese, eat local pastries for our picnics drink Montenegran and Croatian wines and try local liqueurs. The second part of the week in Perast makes for an excellent contrast, with a bit a culture thrown in, a couple of boat trips and wonderful seafood.
By Mr Baker on 29/11/2016
The two holidays we have had with Headwater were extremely enjoyable. Our first was a walking holiday and the second was a cycling holiday.
By Mrs Rarick on 29/11/2016
These trips are like a treasure hunt. Each day you wake up and embark on a new adventure following detailed notes/maps not knowing what you will see or encounter around the next bend. The scenery on our Jurassic coast walk was just spectacular.
By Mr Mitchell on 29/11/2016
Excellent. The best cycling holiday we have done. Fantastic scenery and excellent food.
By Mr Evans on 29/11/2016
Stunning scenery, good food and wine and safe cycleways
By Mr Evans on 29/11/2016
By Mrs Bulmer on 29/11/2016
Overall a very enjoyable holiday. Although not difficult, I do think a reasonable amount of fitness is required. Not sure this was made clear in the brochure.
By Mrs Steele on 29/11/2016
The cycling from Passau to Vienna was a wonderful experience. We were sorry when we had to hand back the bikes as we enjoyed the cycling so much. The holiday was well planned with two day stops so that we had time to explore the beautiful towns en route. Everything was well organised and supported.
By Mrs Barr on 29/11/2016
The website does not make it clear that a lot of the cycling is in built up areas ,which was disappointing and unlike our many previous Headwater holidays.Although all the hotels ,apart from the one in Curia ,were outstanding, I would not recommend this area for cycling.
By Mr Plant on 29/11/2016
Very positive experience.
Interesting series of landscapes/urbanscapes travelled.
Excellent birdwatching along the way.
Very good hotels selected.
By Mrs Collins on 29/11/2016
Our 9 days on the Porto to Coimbra cycling holiday was overall a very enjoyable experience. For those who are not regular cyclists, the first 4 or 5 days, the cycling is along very quiet cycle tracks and mainly flat. The weather was not especially favourable for the first half of our stay, but good cycling temperature. On the other hand, it only rained on the day off and not for long, or at night. We were near the Atlantic coast most of the time, so we didnt get to see the beaches bathed in warmth and sunshine. We cycled along a lot of lagoons and saw flamingos which was exciting and one of the other couples doing the same holiday, was an avid birder and apparently crossed off most of the birds on his list.
Porto is a charming town and the first restaurant that Headwater booked us in for our first evening meal was terrific. Furodouro, the 2nd night's accommodation, hasnt that much to offer, apart from a nice beach and a most welcoming Manager and a lovely indoor pool. The accommodation itself is very
light and spacious.
Aveiro is also a pleasant town, a miniature Venice. The reception recommended a fantastic fish restaurant on the opposite side of the canal, called Mare Cheia, very regional. Excellent hotel, and next door to the Art Nouveau Museum, which is a bit quirky.
The Macarico Hotel in Praia de Mira has a lovely pool on the rooftop. The restaurant, for which you are given Vouchers is good, once you know how and what to order. Not many of the waiters speak English.
The Curia Palace Hotel is extremely grand though not quite as luxurious in its features as we have become accustomed. However there is a huge pool and on the other side of the pool wall, a field with fairly tame fallow deer. The hotel dates back to 1926 and is very much a heritage hotel, with swing music playing in the background at breakfast which is held in a vast ballroom or banqueting hall.
The last hotel in Coimbra is very modern, and you virtually have your own personalised lift. We encountered the only mosquito of the whole trip there! Lovely pool, and it is about a 20 minute walk to the train station, and probably less up to the main part of Coimbra.
The weather and the scenery improved vastly once we headed away from Mira. There are some quite steep hills on the last leg to Coimbra, but we saw electricity pylons layered with nesting White Storks.
By Mr Dick on 29/11/2016
The cycling routes and notes were excellent, the food was gorgeous and the scenery beguiling. Luke & Eleanor were more than welcoming and helpful. When I reported a small technical issue with one of our bikes, it was changed within an hour. The restaurant suggestions were lovely for the nights not on half board.
The opportunity to take a day in Sienna or Florence should not be missed.
By Dr Barclay on 29/11/2016
The holiday provided an excellent mix of walking through spectacular scenery, nice hotels, excellent food and an insight into the complex history of the region.
By Mrs Cunningham on 29/11/2016
As first time cycling holiday, this was the perfect option for us. Travelling between hotels was really interesting and we could go at our own pace. On our first day it took us 4.5hours to cover just 20km due to a bird-watching husband. Our final ride back into L'Ampolla was substantially quicker! Each part of the holiday was a different experience as we moved from river delta to plain and into the mountains. We enjoyed the variety of hotels too.
By Mr Vakil on 29/11/2016
This was our first experience with Headwater. We were extremely impressed and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Our local Rep Sarah was helpful and informative. She knew the area extremely well and had clearly worked hard to develop helpful contacts and provide useful and interesting information about the area we were cycling in. She provided excellent notes and maps and obviously had good relationships with the hotel owners which helped us to feel cared for and welcomed. Sarah is literally the best holiday rep that we have ever encountered. We are full of admiration and gratitude and will definitely book with Headwater again.
By Ms Bowden on 29/11/2016
A very enjoyable cycling holiday exploring the less known areas west of Venice.
By Mr Cummings on 29/11/2016
This holiday is as described. Cycling more difficult at start but definitely got easier. The hotels tended to be on the edge of villages but this didn't matter too much as they had lovely swimming pools and the weather was very hot and sunny.
By Mr Kent on 29/11/2016
The coastline in South West Portugal is stunning and the national park unspoiled .Most days we only saw other walkers and surfers The walks were well planned and came with easy to follow instructions.The way-mark signs were also good. Ludmilla and Tony, the Headwater representatives were excellent.and we felt as though they were there just for us ,even though we knew that they had other guests to look after. .The food and accommodation was ,on the whole ,of a high standard. We wouldn't hesitate to recommend this holiday to other walkers. They wont be disappointed. It far exceeded our expectations!
By Dr Johnson on 29/11/2016
The local guides were extremely helpful and well informed. Their walking routes and descriptions were excellent and full of interest. The whole area was very scenic and with a good variety of wildlife.
By Dr Cobner on 29/11/2016
Excellent walking in lovely surroundings. Good accommodation.
By Mr Carr on 29/11/2016
The hotel is lovely, with great staff. The service was brilliant.
By Mrs McMillan on 29/11/2016
A very comfortable stay in a lovely hotel with good walking on varied terrain in mountains close to Madrid yet unknown to us before we arrived.
By Mrs Reeves on 29/11/2016
Excellent holiday in little known area of Spain.
By Mrs Norman on 29/11/2016
Very varied walking in a lovely area. The walks were of the right length with good descriptions. We had good advice from Teresa. This was not an area we would have gone to without you as we had never heard of it. In September it was quiet with very few other tourists Spanish or British. We had one cold day but otherwise it was good walking weather.
By Mrs Barnes on 29/11/2016
This is a most enjoyable walking holiday. You see some spectacular scenery and stay in some lovely places. In September the weather was hotter than we had expected which made the walks quite demanding, but the excellent notes provided by the guides meant that we never got lost. Most of the hotels were excellent, but while the breakfasts at Costa d'Oiro were good, the dinners were not. There was little choice and the main courses were of poor quality.
By Mr Davies on 29/11/2016
A splendid holiday well organised with a great group of people, lots of laughter,good weather,good walking,good food & drink.
We recomend it.
By Sir Brooke on 28/11/2016
Bermuda is a delightful place and absolutely ideal in November: lovely climate, beautiful beaches, historic interest, luxuriant vegetation, helpful people, more British and Britain. There is even a Marks & Spencer. and an excellent hotel.
By Mr Baker on 28/11/2016
This particular holiday should be retained in your overall offering. Miguel and Imma are superb. It was marvellous to be so alone too - we would often hardly meet anther soul out walking the high ridges. Being in the open with great wide views was tremendous. However, expect unmetalled roads and slow journey times to get to a walk, unless you have a high chassis 4-wheel drive vehicle!
By Mrs Merry on 28/11/2016
Excellent service from start to finish. Quality accommodation. Gozo was a lovely island & we managed to explore every inch with the information provided.
By Mrs Royle on 25/11/2016
We enjoyed our walking in Gran Canaria- great scenery, weather , interesting culture. Enjoyed the company of the other 3 clients with whom we shared our evening table. The instructions for the walks were not always clear but we always competed the walks with a sense of achievement.
By Ms MacFarlane on 24/11/2016
A great introduction to the more remote areas on Gran Canaria and the varied scenery. Holiday offered plenty of flexibility for walks and a high standard of comfort.
By Dr Goddard on 23/11/2016
Excellent hotel, great walks with an excellent local guide, and super company. There were gentle walks in the early days building up to a lovely long last day hike in the mountains. Good local food and opportunities to sample local bars and restaurants. A couple of excursions to Nerja caves and Malaga old town added variety to an excellent week.
By Ms Grybaite on 22/11/2016
Nothing compares to an active holiday, exploring local culture at your own pace!
By Dr Wigham on 22/11/2016
This was our third cycling holiday with Headwater. Our first and second were excellent, but this was the best ever. Indeed this holiday now sits on our list of best holidays ever.
Everything about the trip excelled. The bikes were new, comfortable and well set up. The hotels were all excellent, each offered a first class welcome and service. Whilst being very different, from large chain hotels to small family units typical of a B and B, each was special and offered a memorable experience. But most of all what made this holiday was the cycling. The Alp Adria trail is something to behold. 200 miles of dedicated cycle track. Track that is off road for most of the route and as wide as a country road. Because of this the cycling was stress free, and you were able to take in the magnificent countryside in all its glory. Starting in the mountains and finishing at sea level meant that a good proportion was downhill.
The scenery all the way was outstanding. From the mountains of Slovenia, Kranski Gora being particularly memorable. To the salt water marsh areas of Grado. The contrasts were astonishing. The towns passed through were every one interesting with their own history (ancient in most cases). Also very quiet which suited us. Even in July/August, you never felt like a tourist. You just fit in to their normal life.This meant that we were also afforded the opportunity to practice our languages (most spoke English when needed).
We added two days to the end of our trip in Venice. What can be said about Venice. NOthing except that it needs to be on everyones Bucket list.
Overall a fabulous trip, We recommend unreservedly to anyone contemplating a cycling holiday but are maybe not in the best of shape, right up to an experienced cyclist. There is something for everyone on this trip.
I hope this comment communicates how much we loved our holiday. Thank you Headwater for introducing us to this part of the world and to the Alp Adria trail. The rest of Europe, indeed the world should take a good long look at this piece of engineering,it should be a model to all and duplicated by all.
Chris and Liz, Cardiff
Dear Dr Wigham,
Thank you for taking the time to share your holiday experience with us, it sounds like you had a memorable holiday. I am sure your comments will inspire future customers to try this holiday and hope they enjoy it as much as you did.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mr Brooks on 22/11/2016
Ten self selected people on a group holiday.All of whom gelled together well.5 walks guided by experienced knowledgeable local guide.The walks were adapted to suit our group,which the guide described as faster than average.Excellent scenery.Transfers appeared on time.Picnics ,provided by guide,taken mid walk at any suitable site.One visit for lunch to a 'local'mountain cafÃ©. Experienced rustic food cooked by family.
Rest day my wife and I spent exploring by public bus. Doing a coast line walk at low level.
The hotel San Roque was described as 'boutique'.Service and food were excellent,although evening meal portion sizes were sometimes on the small side with a general lack of vegetables.Breakfast was a buffet with freshly cooked eggs to go with cold meats and tomatoes. There being plenty of rolls,jam and cheese.
I am Coeliac needing gluten free bread and food.I had notified Headwater and the hotel in advance.I was looked after extremely well.At breakfast I had gluten free ham,rolls and maize cakes provided.At evening meal my food was adapted to gluten free .
The guide did not know that I was gluten free until I informed him.However he acquired gluten free rolls for picnics and advised on gluten free options at the rustic cafÃ©.
I had booked a duplex room at the hotel.This was quirky.The jacuzzi bath was 'in the living area'.I could have bathed, watched TV and entertained guests at the same time
The bed was on a mezzanine but no external window.The wardrobes and other clothes storage areas were downstairs in the lounge area.All the floors were red coloured Canarian pine.This made the transition from floor to stairs difficult in poor light.Especially as the bathroom was up 3 stairs and there was no hand rail.
Although not needed the room did not have any area specifically to put wet coats or muddy boots.
The guide was excellent.His English improved through out the week .He was very knowledgeable about local flora,fauna and geology.He organised the transfers at the start and end of the day efficiently.He often altered our walk length and route to suit the conditions.
By Mr Newell on 22/11/2016
A combination of great walks in a beautiful place coupled with an outstanding hotel made it a week to remember.
By Ms Cope on 18/11/2016
Please only print this review if you are prepared to print the whole review, on a previous year you extracted the positive elements only, so please use it all or none of it.
We think this is our 8th Headwater holiday so to put it into context definitely one of the best. Great location, cycling routes, hotels and in the main the food. The maps & guides for the cycling were excellent some of the best we've had. We chose this particular holiday as although the gastronomic was not specifically what we wanted, we did want hotels which were in quiet countryside locations, these hotels were all fabulous.
Les Deux Chevres was particularly good, great location, lovely rooms, great service and excellent breakfasts. We added two extra nights at Les Deux Chevres - as recommended by Headwater - it was definitely the best place to have extra time. We also took the train to Dijon (without bikes) and Beaune (with bikes) so the area has plenty to do. On one of our extra days we made our own cycling route via the Vergy villages (Reulle / Curtil) which was also fabulous. The differing countryside is all stunning, the routes give a very varied view of the area, we felt we really had covered this area of France.
Our only minus was one of the dinners in Gevrey Chambertin (La Rotisserie) otherwise all the dinners were absolutely excellent.
This holiday felt more like the early Headwater holidays we went on, when dinner was included in the package. The hotels were usually smallish country or village hotels well off the beaten track, and by default the only place you could have dinner was in the hotel. There wasn't a need to have the hotel in a larger town location which gave options for dinner. We appreciate this doesn't suit everybody but we loved the quirky places we stayed and the more rural locations.
However this holiday did give us what we were looking for, fabulous!
Dear Ms Cope,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire.
We would like to reassure you that do we post all our customers feedback, constructive or positive in its entirety, unedited.
During the completion process, we do advise customers to add viewable comments in the holiday sum up box, if they prefer to enter comments for our information only; they enter in the other comments or suggestions box. Many customers choose to complete both boxes. We then post this information to the relevant holiday page displaying the comments provided. We hope this clarifies your query.
It was great to read this was your 8th Headwater holiday and was one of the best so far. It sounds like you really made the most of your holiday.
We would like to thank you for your continued loyalty and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mr Brown on 18/11/2016
Bermuda is slightly off the beaten track, the air temperature is good for walking but also swimming etc. Bermudans are exremely friendly and not once did we feel threatened or have to stop people trying to sell us goods.
By Ms Buddery on 18/11/2016
The holiday was well organised with great guides, knowledgeable on the area and walks. The accommodation was clean and David and Sue were very willing to help. I felt safe and confident and would recommend this holiday for singles as well as couples. A very good holiday and would love to go back and try the 3 boot holiday
By Mr Sutherland on 18/11/2016
Very good leaders for walking and giving info. about the area.
Accommodation and food of a high standard.
By Mr Banyard on 18/11/2016
A great place for a winter holiday. Clement weather, wonderful scenery, friendly local people and good facilities for eating out, transport and communications. I would not recommend the holiday to those who are inexperienced with navigation, though most routes were well marked. Athough we did not use it a GPS unit would have been helpful.
By Mr Sharma on 17/11/2016
Well planned walks with great backup from notes and rep.
By Ms Evans on 17/11/2016
This was our second cycling holiday with Headwater and again we really enjoyed it. One of the reason we went back to Headwater was the helpful guidance and personal recommendation when booking the first holiday. Unfortunately this was absent with the second booking. We were constantly referred to the brochure and website which we had already studied prior to contacting the office and we're looking for something more than just a booking service. As a result, we changed our minds several times after getting into the detail of each trip and eventually settled on the right one for us. This wasted both our time and also that of the booking agents who made several provisional reservations which were than cancelled. The agents need to be better informed regarding the trips on offer.
The organisation was very good and efficient on the whole, but because we booked our own flights and chose to return on a different flight on a different day they would not book the return train transfer which resulted in unnecessary hassle.
The local agent was very poor. Whilst she spent time with us going through all the necessary information, she demonstrated no interest whatsoever in whether or not we had a good time and provided no personal input. Anything that fell outwits her immediate knowledge was referred the local office and then on to the UK hence the issue with the train transfer which could easily have been dealt with locally. She made it very. Lear that she would not be available once we left the first hotel as she had another job as a teacher!
Once underway everything was fine. All the hotels were as expected, comfortable with reasonable service and food. Most were B&B and we enjoyed the option of choosing when, where and what to eat. The bikes were in good order, comfortable and provided with panniers, good practical locks and cycle computers which were great. guidance notes were fine and it was good to have the maps as well as notes.
For this trip, we would have liked another night at Caldara lake. The hotel was the best of those in which we stayed, the only one with decent outside space and a pool and we would have liked to do more at the lake.
In Merano we had one of our best 'rest days', cycling up to the cable car and spending the day on the mountain and would encourage this rather than a day in the town.
Riva del Garda was disappointing in that it a real holiday tourist destination with accompanying tack yards and shops. However, we found a mountain trail for which our bikes were suitable and spent most of the day out of town.
The Headwater Blue Books were disappointing - most completely empty and those in which people had written were just the comments you might find in a visitors book. On our previous trip, the books contained really useful and practical information on where to go, what to see, where to eat etc and I would encourage people to provide this sort of information whenever possible.
Finally, this was graded as a 2 bike trip, but it really was only a one. Much of the cycling was downhill or flat with only a couple of mandatory hills, plus a few optional detours. Also worth noting that for the first 5 days there was a heavy German influence - everyone spoke German, food was German and it was only when we got to Lake Garda that Italian was the first language.
Had a couple of nights in Verona at the end and went to the Opera which we would thoroughly recommend.
By Ms Gane on 17/11/2016
Easy walking, lovely views and good food
By Mrs Patel on 15/11/2016
A great holiday with technical walks offering spectacular views. The quality and effort put into each evening meal was a great bonus. I would definitely recommend this holiday and would say David & Sue are superb hosts.
By Mrs Lancaster on 14/11/2016
This was our first holiday to Madeira and fortunately enjoyed perfect walking weather.
We enjoyed the Levada experience very much but the Sao Lourenco Peninsula walk was definitely a highlight. Our last walk into Funchal was disappointing but appreciate it had been changed because of the summer fires.
The hotels were delightfully varied. At the Quinta do Furao we enjoyed live music and an outdoor hotel buffet/ barbecue on our last night. At the Serra Golf we found our selves upgraded to a lovel suite! Staying at The Bela Vista is like stepping back in time to ' Colonial days '. Silver service is a fun experience. The waiters were a little surprised when my husband asked for beer rather than wine! But they soon got used to him. We cannot fault the food and service at this hotel. Although the hotel is out of Funchal we did find the local bus service and hotel minibus service worked well.
Overall a wonderful holiday.
By Mrs Searle on 14/11/2016
It was good
Walking harder than expected
La gomera was not as pretty as I had expected. Too barren
I think that though we are fit we are too old for that group and perhaps should have been warned
Hotel was marvellous. We had a deluxe room and it was worth every penny
By Mrs Lynn on 11/11/2016
An enjoyable holiday cycling in the beautiful countryside of the Dordogne region, visiting medieval towns and villages, castles and gardens. We were sorry not to be able to canoe as planned but nevertheless had a great holiday.
By Mr Mitchison on 11/11/2016
Excellent and varied walks in attractive countryside, comfortable friendly hotels and interesting local cuisine with plenty of truffles. Our very helpful local guide, Romina, advised us about possible issues and added to our enjoyment of the holiday.
By Mr Bruce on 11/11/2016
easy cycling, great countryside and good accomodation but take proctection against mosquitoes.
By Mr Roberts on 11/11/2016
A really good experience, James and Hazel were very helpful and informative and the walking notes were amongst the best we've ever had. Chateau de Tertres was a lovely venue but it was rather a long way from Chaumont which added rather too much to the final days walk.
By Mr Etchellsbutler on 11/11/2016
After long tiring days of walking, it was lovely to relax in rustic accommodation with comfortable beds, a good en suite and decent food. We thoroughly enjoyed 'Walking the Way of St. James.' The landscape was thoroughly unexpected in Galicia, - very lush, green and much like the U.K. and Ireland. It was particularly special to make friends (although very briefly) with people from all over the world.
By Mr Jonas on 11/11/2016
Another good walking experience in delightful countryside, enough walking and good proximity to alternative attractions on the rest days. One excellent hotel, if it had been practical to do so we would have been happy to stay there instead of Vosne Romanee. All the restaurants were good or excellent except that below, and in keeping with the quality of the overall holiday.
By Ms Hamilton on 11/11/2016
Hotel Ta Cenc was a massive disappointment and does not provide anywhere near the 5 star classification and is generally grubby with poor attendance and hospitality. Hotel Kempinski is more like the standard expected in hospitality, service facilities and efficiency as expected from a five star rating.
We expected a quite island for cycling in Gozo but it really is quite and urban spread with some heavy traffic that are not appreciative of cyclists ad pedestrians. Our pick up driver to Gozo (a local) was rude drove very fast in roads that needed much more caution especially with cyclists, pedestrians and moreover children. Footpaths are not consistent hence the need for caution. It must have been one of our worst paid for private transfer!
By Mr Rice on 11/11/2016
We were warmly welcomed by the local agent who advised us and made sure collections of us and our luggage happened on time. This generally worked well, with only one slight mishap. Whilst a couple of the hotels on our walking holiday wouldn't necessarily have been our personal choice, all of them were clean and comfortable. Locally sourced food was available in most of them.
The daily walking routes were very well written and only occasionally did we refer to the thoughtfully provided OS map. Going off piste was minimal. The Jurassic coastal path walking was magnificent.
In summary, considering the late time of year, travel to and from the West Country was not included and the fact that the accommodation was only half board, on reflection we felt the holiday was quite expensive. However it was good to have somebody else resolve the logistics so we could focus on enjoying the walking. Thank you to the Headwater team.
By Mrs Currie on 11/11/2016
Good walking with fantastic scenery.
By Mrs Mulder on 11/11/2016
Fantastic experience walking Madeira. Even on a cloudy day it is an amazing place. Headwater arranged everything effortless. Amazing how the drivers were always there on the dot! Very reliable at all times. The levada walks were easy walks - except if you haven't got a head for heights...Good variety in walks and great that Headwater could provide more walks if you wanted to walk more. For example on your free days.
Will book with Headwater again - a no brainer!
By Mr Mathias on 11/11/2016
Good .Poor room in the hotel Carrie Porto small room small window looking across a narrow ally straight into a derelict building.This room should not be let in this state.
Dear Mr Mathias,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire. We were pleased to see you had a good holiday, although, we were sorry to read of your disappointment with the standard of room you were allocated at Carris Porto Ribeira. Since receiving your feedback, we have asked the hotelier to ensure they do not allocate this room to future Headwater customers. Whilst we realise this does not affect your holiday, we do hope it goes some way to show we take our customers feedback seriously. We would like to thank you for your continued loyalty and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mr Aston on 11/11/2016
Lovely holiday - the northern Portuguese seemed very friendly and welcoming of tourists.
By Mr Chesters on 11/11/2016
Fantastic holiday. Walking and talking with friends in spectacular scenery is a truly great experience. The whole trip was seamlessly organised and and executed by Nicola and his local team.
By Mr Tobbell on 11/11/2016
Very good indeed and very well organised but as we're we're the last week of the season many restaurants and bars were shut particularly on marritimo- I think we should have been told about this. Other than that an excellent holiday.
By Mrs Timbrell on 11/11/2016
Accommodation varied.... food in restaurant in Scopello great. Food at La Luna great.
As was very end of the season nothing was open on Marretimo. There were 2 restaurants which only sold fish so not much choice.
Walks were fantastic. Apartment basic but functional...good breakfasts.
The 2 taxi drivers were first rate, very good English, helpful and informative.
By Mr Bramhall on 11/11/2016
Great walks every day with spectacular scenery in the high Alps. You need to be pretty fit to do the climbs every morning but they are well worth it when you hit the summits. Accommodation was generally very good with superb evening meals at Hotel Reynard and L'Abbaye in particular. We would advise doing the holiday in July or August - everything, including bars, mountain top cafÃ©s, shops and chair lifts, is closed during the last couple of weeks in June - this would appear to be out of season. A couple of very cloudy days with rain and drizzle spoilt the opportunity to take on an optional 3hr summit extension at Mont du Grange but for the most part the weather was glorious.
By Mr MacKrill on 11/11/2016
Beautiful countryside and villages with fantastic unspoilt views, fabulous hotels and food. Plus being very well looked after by excellent Headwater staff.
By Mrs Smith on 11/11/2016
A lovely holiday apart from the Rep. She did not understand what headwater holidays involved at all and was only interested in promoting what she could book.
By Mr Lay on 11/11/2016
5 star hotel rating is over generous, though location is superb. Lounge, multiple pool facilities, and ambience are good. Plumbing is of sixties origin and need upgrading. Food of good quality and well presented. Al fresco eating would be unpleasant if you had a cat phobia, though indoor dining was always available. Hotel courtesy bus proved very useful and was complemented the excellent public service buses. Walking was enjoyable and not too strenuous. As birds were migrating, finch hunting was evident on most clifftop walks prompting frequent shot gun blasts and diversions round bird netting traps. Overall a good location for walking with a variety of routes and places to visit. .
By Mrs Marchant on 11/11/2016
Great holiday, great walks, great island. Javier was fantastic and a wonderful guide.
By Ms Myron on 11/11/2016
Everything about this holiday was top class. From the accommodation, the food, the walking, the guide, the transfers to the hotel staff. Most of all the company of the other walkers. Compliments to all concerned.
By Mr Towers on 09/11/2016
I would advise potential customers to double check that the cycle rating reflects reality. For the Brittany Coastal holiday there is clearly a major discrepancy which completely ruined our holiday.
By Mr Glass on 09/11/2016
The key to this successful holiday was the welcome and hospitality and helfulness of staff at Acquaviva. And the fact that we were travelling with two other couples and good friends. So planning each day and experimenting with walks and different trip was great fun.
By Mr Normand on 09/11/2016
Good varied walking, with clear directions. But we were pleased the weather was not hot because, aged about 70, we found the walking days quite full. Timing was as predicted though torrential rain had turned some of the tracks into an obstacle course.
Hotels were excellent, all very special in different ways. Chateau de Monrecours is magnificent, feels very expensive, with a talented chef and friendly helpful Maitre d'.
Monrecours and Les Glycines provided special menus for Headwater, Meysett and Laborderie scored by saying 'here are all our menus, have what you like'!
Nearly all staff spoke very good English.
By Dr Sterland on 09/11/2016
Good location for walking and other things of interest. Hotel was a bit odd although comfortable. Being larger than some it was not so friendly as some of the smaller hotels, although the staff we individually friendly there were quite a number.
By Mrs Campion on 09/11/2016
Fantastic views, relaxing cycling and some good hotels. Days off in Merano and Trento were very enjoyable with lots to do and see. We were really surprised by how few people spoke Italian until we got as far south as Trento - most people speak German in the north.
By Mrs Dillnutt on 09/11/2016
The cycle tracks in Portugal were good and holiday would suit people new to cycling holidays
By Mrs Hales on 09/11/2016
We thoroughly enjoyed this holiday. The walking was fantastic and our guide Louigi absolutely made it for us. His local knowledge and his stories of past and present were fascinating. We were really lucky to be with a lovely group of like minded walkers which all added to a memorable time.
Our one niggle is that we were disappointed with the Hotel Bellavista. We did not think the food was very special and objected to having to choose your meal for the evening at breakfast time. Surely this should not be necessary!
Two extra nights staying in Naples was interesting! Miles away from the tranquility of the Amalfi coast but well worth doing.
By Mr Toms on 09/11/2016
Easy walking over gentle countryside with spectacular coast
By Mrs Gardner on 09/11/2016
We had a lovely holiday and thoroughly enjoyed the walking from one hotel to the next. The route notes were very detailed and easy to follow (especially as we had the maps too). Also the folders in the hotels with customers comments were useful especially for finding restaurants. We particularly appreciated the wine carrying service. It was great being able to buy wine on the way and then find it all in our hotel room at the end. Our rep, Hannah, was very friendly and helpful especially in finding a restaurant for our first night in Turckheim when most restaurants seemed to be shut. We did all the suggested longer walks (even in the rain) and have arrived home feeling very fit! All in all it was an excellent holiday - many thanks to Headwater and to our rep Hannah for her help and encouragement.
By Mrs Lewis on 09/11/2016
We are 2 female friends and booked single occupancy of rooms. We felt hotels were well chosen and variable, but all interesting and overall comfortable . We got a bit sick of the Pilgrim 10 euro menu, but also had some superb meals. The walking was excellent, and easier than we had expected. We enjoyed the independence of being self guided. There were a few minor faults in the daily walking guide and we have offered to come in and point them out. We live in Chester and decided to Travel from Liverpool to Madrid and spend a night there rather than at Heathrow. We did find that the schedule on Day 1 was a bit over-heavy. Everyone was exhausted that night. But, overall this was a Brilliant holiday! And May was a very good choice this year.
By Mrs McKenzie on 08/11/2016
thoroughly enjoyed the walking-especially when following the river. Accomodation comfortable and staff in the hotels welcoming and friendly. We had really personable and informative couriers able to supply us with local information on the areas-they went the extra mile!
By Mis Buttrick on 08/11/2016
A wonderful walking holiday in Maderia. A great insight of the island. Headwater took all the work out of the travel and holiday arrangements and left us to enjoy ourselves!
By Mr Goater on 08/11/2016
Most interesting and refreshing holiday exploring parts of Canaries not explored or seen before.
Unfortunately did get lost on a couple of occasions. We did not find Rambling Roger very helpful although his knowledge of island is extensive. His communication style and customer care clearly did not work for us.
By Mrs Garnett on 02/11/2016
A good week in the north-west corner of Sicily. The holiday cleverly combined walking (and swimming) in the Zingaro nature reserve and on the island of Marettimo with visits to the archaeological site at Segesta and the hill-top town of Erice. Transfers for our group of six were provided by our helpful and informative taxi driver, who made sure that we enjoyed our visit to the area.
By Dr Wheeler on 31/10/2016
Excellent, but a couple of mistakes on instructions this time. At Villa Favorita the food needs to be sorted out. Truly poor. Noticed that the owner does not eat the same food as the guests- this speaks volumes. The staff were pleasant and they were very helpful, but the evening meals were inedible. The pasta with tomatoes - which anyone can cook was ruined by the addition of vast amounts of sugar!@! Tuna turned to rubber, and they only had 4 of us to feed that night. Quite the most dreadful meal in 9 trips with Headwater.
Meal at Torre Dantona was brilliant as was their breakfast.
Must just thank Sonia at the Portapalo suites. What a lovely lady. Best breakfast of the trip, and so warm and friendly. The rooms were extremely clean too.
By Mr Beaumontthomas on 31/10/2016
Our first Headwater holiday and we can really recommend Umbria as a destination. We worried about whether the bikes would be up to scratch and the potential restrictions of half-board, but on both counts we were pleasantly surprised. The week's route circling the valley meant that the long views often included hill towns we'd visited or would be visiting. This created a real sense of achievement! And most of all, the fantastic cycling meant we could indulge in all that amazing food and wine and still come home only a couple of pounds heavier!
By Mr Till on 31/10/2016
The notes were very detailed,accurate and all the paths well-marked locally; that made for a very relaxing walking experience. The hotels, whether grand or more humble, exceded our expectations; The Castell d'Emporda was a stunning place to spend our rest day, the food and friendliness at Hotel Rosa was great.
By Mr Ward on 31/10/2016
Excellent holiday with varied scenery. The 1+ rating is about right. The walks are too long for a 1, but the terrain is not difficult.The timing of the arrival of the plane into Barcelona gave insufficient time to make the scheduled train so we had to wait an hour for the next one.
By Mr Ward on 31/10/2016
We did the Classic Catalan walk as a short break at the end of the season, in October. The mixture of 15/17 kilometer walks, historic towns, seaside and forests, with comfortable hotels at nights, and luggage transported from place to place, was just right. Just what we needed.
By Mrs Ould on 31/10/2016
Bikes were excellent as were the reps but the accommodation was poor.
By Mrs Blease on 31/10/2016
Thoroughly enjoyed this holiday . Chose the harder/longer options every day and suggest a reasonable level of fitness required to do this. Probably would have chosen easier options some days or rest days in high season when weather warmer - mid October it was around 20C so great cycling/sightseeing weather. Enjoyed all the unspoiled medieval villages. Hotels all high quality but different in character. Will certainly try similar holidays with Headwater in the future.The reps Brian and Olivia were very personable and it was reassuring to know they would be available if required.
By Mrs Craik on 31/10/2016
This holiday was to be a special treat after a stressful year moving house plus a major renovation project. I am not a strong cyclist, and we chose the Catalan Coastal Cycling because it had the same pattern of two night stays with alternate days cycling and at leisure which we had enjoyed two years ago on the Venetian Villas and Vineyards holiday. Headwater emailed on 31 August 2016 in reply to our enquiry to say that all hotels had confirmed availability, so we booked our flights. On 5 September 2016, we got an email from Headwater to say that the Reservation Team at one of the hotels, the Castell dâ€™Emporda, had accepted our booking in error as they already had a wedding booked for what would have been the second night of our stay and could only accommodate us for one night. We had looked forward to the two nights at the Castell as the highlight of our trip, had specially wished to visit the ceramic workshops at the nearby town of La Bisbal on the â€œrestâ€ day, and did not feel confident of cycling around 35 kilometres on each of two consecutive days. I asked if another hotel could be found that could accommodate us for two nights, but was told that this was not possible. Our flights could not be cancelled or changed, so we had no option but to go ahead and accept the offer from Headwater of a refund of Â£72 per person to reflect the difference in price between the Castell and the next hotel where we would now spend three nights. In the event, the two consecutive days cycling were extremely tiring (as previous reviewers have noted, some of the cycling on this itinerary is on off-road tracks which makes it more strenuous than the equivalent distance on tarmac). When we arrived late in the afternoon at the Castell, a large British wedding party was there, with the main terrace area entirely occupied with tables for dinner and live music for them. The upgrade to a suite (offered to us by way of apology for the booking error) was of limited interest as we were there for such a short time, though the complimentary bottle of cava was more appreciated. What I find particularly unacceptable is that when I expressed astonishment that a hotel of this standard could make such a mistake with our booking, Headwater told me â€œit happens all the time, theyâ€™re not very organised out thereâ€. We have been organising our own independent travel to Europe and the US for over thirty years and have never had this happen before. It is no encouragement to use (and pay the premium for) the services of a travel agent. To conclude, I would like to say that the other three hotels we stayed in were excellent, obviously popular with Spanish people, and our two reps, Brian and Olivia, were friendly, helpful and efficient. However, the experience of paying for an expensive holiday which does not turn out to be as expected is not one we are likely to repeat.
By Mr Lovell on 31/10/2016
Headwater Holidays are always an interesting and memorable holiday. The variety of accomodation combined with cycling or walking abroad is a winning formula whether you travel as a couple or with fitness minded friends. We have tried over 10 destinations now over the years including the canoeing down the dorgogne and every combination has been wonderful. The guided walking gives you a chance to see and learn about areas of europe that are off the beaten track and you feel like you are experiencing the real country.
By Ms Elliott on 31/10/2016
This was a really terrific week. We were lucky in that the weather was absolutely perfect - no rain (until we were on the plane out!), 25C days, constant sunshine. The base, Villa Acquaviva, is just beautiful, surrounded by its own vineyards and a fine garden dotted with fruit trees. Our room was in the villa, was spacious enough and had a nice view back towards Montemerano. The food was outstanding. At dinner there's a wide choice for you three courses and we tried most of the options. The food is mostly locally sourced, really fresh and the cooking is first rate. They only sell the wines they themselves make, but they too were very good. Breakfast was also excellent, though you won't find a full English on offer. The staff were charming and helpful, and very quick to sort out a couple of minor glitches (safe batteries, hot water, wifi)
The walking was nicely varied, with plenty of options. There's a bit more on offer than you can easily cover in a week, and we didn't get to the Maremma walk.
The others ranged from fairly short and easy (Vitozza and Vulci) to fairly strenuous (Sorano, Argentaria). Argentaria in particular was, as advertised, quite a big hike. The notes were highly reliable, and there's quite a lot of Etruscan history as a bonus. There's a certain amount of driving involved, some of it on winding roads, but the scenery is lovely, and we didn't find it too onerous.
Overall, a thoroughly enjoyable trip.
By Mr Hallam on 31/10/2016
Lovely area of France with variety of walks in differing landscapes.
By Mrs Aries on 31/10/2016
I felt safe travelling totally alone and venturing out on my bicycle by myself, secure in the knowledge that assistance would be readily available if required. Happily this was not needed but it made a huge difference to my piece of mind. I hope that Headwater can extend its leisurely options to include other trips. The travel notes routinely described inclines as 'gentle'. Some of these gentle inclines were about as much as I could manage. I now wouldn't attempt any cycling trips in the catalogue beyond 'leisurely'. The hotels were delightful, El Castell d'Emporda being top of my list.
By Dr Adams on 31/10/2016
This was a lovely part of Portugal which luckily for us is not spoilt by too many tourists. Well thought out and planned. Very remote locations so do not expect to pop into town for anything.
By Mrs Mann on 31/10/2016
The region was flat for easy cycling, except for the climb up to the Parador Tortosa!! but it was fun trying. Allan made it to the top! All the hotels were great . A good mix of eating options.
By Mrs Harraway on 31/10/2016
Excellent hotels, and food .
Extremely well organised .
Reps very helpful.
Cycling tough !
By Mr Morgan on 31/10/2016
Cycling is a great way to experience a country
By Mr Warren on 31/10/2016
quite challenging cycling on day one for the over70s - entirely our choice made enjoyable by rescue and advice from Tony and Ludmilla - absolute gems throughout - electric bikes would be a good option on this holiday - easy enough to avoid the offroad stuff if that is a worry with them - overall an excellent holiday with spectacular beaches and coastal views
By Mr Wiblin on 31/10/2016
I cannot fault the logistics. Everything went smoothly and our rep, Lin, was superb. Nothing was too much trouble for her. By building extra days into our holiday we had plenty of time to visit local towns and get a real feel for the area. Cannot recommend Les Deux Chevres highly enough. We were made to feel so welcome and the food they provided was excellent. As someone with an allergy to wheat I really appreciated the effort they went to. Would definitely recommend doing the wine tasting with Matthieu whilst staying there. It was informative and entertaining. Also would recommend a visit to the Hospice in Beaune if you have the time. It was fascinating.
By Mrs Mitchell on 31/10/2016
Easy pedalling in the sun with local cuisine and a great chance to be somewhere where English is hardly spoken!
By Mr Ridley on 31/10/2016
Excellent holiday but, perhaps, not so much n the shoulder season.
By Mr Carr on 31/10/2016
An ideal way to explore the country at a relaxed pace. You'll stay at a mix of hotels all with their own individual highlights and character. All very friendly.
By Mr Long on 31/10/2016
Great all round experience
By Mrs Godsall on 31/10/2016
We really enjoyed this holiday which introduced us to a beautiful and interesting part of Italy. The cycling is mainly on cycle paths so traffic free and not much uphill. It was lovely to visit Lake Garda but it was busy and we would have preferred to have an extra night at Lake Caldaro instead. We also thought if we repeated this holiday we would prefer to cycle from Caldaro to Trento ourselves.
By Mrs Davies on 31/10/2016
Have been on a few of your holidays and they have always been very very good.
By Mr Raper on 31/10/2016
An opportunity to experience something different in a beautiful part of the world with the benefit of the professional way Headwater looked after us.
By Mr Laxen on 31/10/2016
We really enjoyed our holiday, but because we chose the 10 day option, which included 4 nights in the hotel we liked least, Albergo La Macchia (all other hotels were 2 nights) we ended up being disappointed with this part of the trip. On one of our days off we took a train from Spoleto (very easy, but remember to validate tickets) to do a one day visit to Assisi (get the bus from the station to the last stop then walk down through Assisi), rather than stopping off for a short time on the last leg of the cycling. It was better to have a relaxing time to wander through Assisi. We will will certainly be thinking about another Headwater holiday.
By Mr Hodgson on 31/10/2016
Enjoyable relaxing holiday, with good mix of activites, beautiful scenery,great food and comfortable hotels, highly recommended!
By Mr Marsh on 31/10/2016
Everything was well thought though, GPS, local mobile and bike equipment. Very relaxing and enjoyable holiday
By Mr Levitch on 31/10/2016
We have always found Headwater to be a most professional company in their approach and this holiday proved to be the same. However, due to both of us coming down with a nasty cold virus virtually from day one, we also found a caring and flexible company in the Local Agent who offered helpful suggestion's and bike transfers on bad days. Now in our September, years this was important and will bring us back to Headwater in the future.
By Mrs Pincott on 31/10/2016
The Secrets of San Gimignano holiday was fantastic. Eleanor and Luke, the reps, simply could not have been more helpful, the cycling was excellent (but hard work - Tuscany is hilly) and the hotels and food amazing.
By Dr Garwood on 31/10/2016
Very enjoyable holiday in a lovely part of Sicily. Perhaps we should have gone in April/May rather than October to see the wild flowers particularly the orchids on Marettimo. Several days were rather hot for the walking! Not such a variety of bird life as expected but there were a very large numberof robins on Mareettimo - not sure why! Good hotels and, in particular, Daniela was very welcoming and looked after us well, with good food, at the Baglio La Luna. Flights via Rome meant leaving at 3am on the way out and 4am on the way back. Good service from the local reps and Niccolo was a very careful and attentive driver who gave us good advice and made sure we had the right instructions and departure gate for the hydrofoil to Marettimo.
By Mr Higginson on 31/10/2016
Great to see a less explored side of Sicily.
By Ms Hawkes on 31/10/2016
Lucia was an excellent guide .She was enthusiastic and informative and looked after us very well. The hotels were in good locations and the views were excellent.
The Hotel Garden was in a lovely location but there were some niggles which could so easily be put right. Breakfast wasn't very good - for very little extra they could have produced fruit salad, better quality cereal and fresh milk. Also the breakfast tables were in such strong sunlight you couldn't enjoy breakfast and, when asked they wouldn't move the tables- they just suggested that we eat outside but it was too cold to do so. Hotel Garden's garden and swimming pool needed a bit of TLC. All little things but could have made a difference as it was in a great location.
At the second hotel I would recommend that Headwater reserves rooms that are not on the ground floor because these are straight onto a busy road.
Overall the holiday was very good indeed and met our expectations. Thank you
By Mr Bulmer on 31/10/2016
Elizabetta is an outstanding leader and this holiday fully lived up to the description given to us by the Headwater office. It was an interesting and varied combination of walking and sightseeing in at least six towns, there were good walks on several days which on the whole were pleasant , and the use of the van was of key importance in providing this variety. In many ways it was unique and difficult to reproduce with a different leader. The CinqTerra walk at the start of the holiday was more challenging than we expected, with a long and very steep descent, but Elisabetta helped us get through it.
By Mr Craig on 31/10/2016
Our guide was outstanding and helped to make the holiday memorable, but note she will no longer be the guide for this holiday next year.
By Dr Garton on 31/10/2016
Takes you on new journeys
By Mr Roberts on 31/10/2016
Casa Carrascal offers the perfect walking holiday in a friendly group atmosphere. The walks were challenging and varied providing superb views. Sue and David were the perfect hosts, providing expert guiding, comfortable accommodation and last but not least fabulous food.
By Mrs Sillett on 31/10/2016
A holiday that we enjoyed so much in 2013 that we went again this year!
Walks are not too challenging and provide beautiful views of Tuscany. Be aware that generally the hardest walking is the final ascent to your destination so reserve some energy and water.
A trip to Florence or Siena is really easy from Colle Val D'Elsa by bus and the location of the hotel in San Gimignano is perfect for dipping in and out of the crowds during the day
By Ms Van bentum on 31/10/2016
Lovely views, lovely walks (accurate maps and grading), lovely hotels and a lovely rep (Ludmilla). It was a great holiday with the two nights in Pedralva and the walk to the lighthouse on the last day as the absolute highlights.
By Mrs Cerny on 31/10/2016
We had our first holiday with Headwater this October in Portugal. We had never been on an organised walking holiday before, but any concerns we might have had , e.g. getting lost,were soon abated. The route maps were excellent and easy to follow. The timing of each walk was accurate, so we were able to pace ourselves accordingly. We often walked the whole day without meeting a soul except at the beach, where we could watch surfers in crashing waves. The range of accommodation was excellent. We enjoyed our stay in Pedralva and were lucky to have a a cottage with a large patio.The hotels were in great locations and all very comfortable. Ludmilla and Tony were very helpful and knowledgeable about the area. We had not been to Portugal on holiday before. We will be back!
By Ms Rodgers on 31/10/2016
This was a great way to explore the Euganean Hills , we travelled in late September and the weather was perfect for walking. The holiday is a great combination of walking and rest days and our rep ,Sarah, had plenty of good advice on what to see and do.
By Mr Turnbull on 31/10/2016
A fascinating island and a guide who was passionate about it. The hotel was beautifully designed, food was excellent and staff were lovely.
By Mr Bird on 31/10/2016
A good, enjoyable and trouble-free holiday. The walks themselves were easy, but unremarkable and at times dull.
By Mr Bellis on 31/10/2016
We had a very enjoyable trip, with great walking in beautiful locations, meeting interesting people, eating some delicious meals and we appreciated having our luggage transported!
By Ms Smith on 31/10/2016
By Mrs Gatward on 31/10/2016
This was my second visit to the finca - my first was in November when the weather was poor, and I wanted to see what it was like in sunshine. I was not disappointed - I would recommend this holiday to everyone who enjoys walking, eating good food and drinking wine!
By Mr Pocknell on 25/10/2016
We have had a wonderful holiday with Headwater. Everything was well organised and thought out. We have cycled through gorgeous countryside, with great scenery and the majority on quiet country roads. Perfect as always somewhere nice to stop and have lunch on route and cheaply, eaten miles too much but then have cycled it off ðŸ™‚
By Mrs Ruthen on 25/10/2016
Nothing to worry about, great accommodation in wonderful locations,excellent walks
By Mr Leggett on 14/10/2016
Your booking service was efficient and professional. The holiday itself was only average, particularly given the cost
By Mr Herring on 14/10/2016
The 3 location concept was very good and was what attracted us to the holiday. It gave us a very good overview of that part of Croatia and it was entirely suitable to the older generation.
By Mrs Tully on 14/10/2016
We have been on a few other trips with headwater and this was our least favorite. There are a number of problems with the instructions. The area is not as scenic at the time of year we rode as others. The distances are quite short with little to do once the ride is over. There are things that need to be thought out and tips and pointers given such as availability of taxis to St. Remy and restaurant/store availability. Still a number of bugs that need to be worked out.
By Mr Peat on 14/10/2016
Good value for money. Lovely walking. Beautiful island.
By Mrs Huddart on 14/10/2016
Hilltop villages of Provence
This was an excellent holiday, lovely scenery and good hotels and we had a lot of fun. Days 1 and 3 are quite challenging and justify the 2 bike plus rating but the other days are not overly taxing, and there is no shame in pushing your bike up the hill into Gordes! If you start the cycling bit of this holiday on a Sunday there is an excellent market in Isles sur la Sorgue where you can get picnic supplies...although pushing the bike through the packed town was a bit challenging.(I would give this holiday 5 stars)
Vineyards of the Vaucluse
Pleasant cycling through some enjoyable countryside, and lots of good wine! Le Grand Jardin is one of the loveliest places we have stayed. The food at Castel Mireio was delicious and the service (unlike a previous reviewer we didn't find it slow) and welcome very friendly. We are not quite sure it merits anything higher than a one bike rating - some of the distances for full days cycling were a bit short (but we had done 'Hilltop Villages of Provence' the week before so this may have coloured our view). It is not a very touristy area (apart from Vaison la Romain) so many places you visit are quite quiet.
(I would give this holiday 3 stars)
By Mrs Cook on 14/10/2016
We really enjoyed the holiday, the scenery was amazing. Our hotel the Bellevue was comfortablle and clean, the staff friendly and helpful but not a lot to do on an evening, we sought out a couple of places in the town towards the end of the week but as we were on holiday right at the end of the season it was very quiet. The menu choice didn't have a great deal of variety/choice and did forgo the evening meal on some nights or went out beforehand as we has walked all day and we're quite hungry! (We are slightly buillt but did feel on some nights that we were stilll hungry).
The spa in the hotel was lovely and we did use the pool and steam rooms but only on one evening when we returned early enough to use the facilities before dinner.
The walking guides and maps were very helpful an on the whole accurate, some of the gradings for the difficulty of the walkes were not accurate some walkes described as Two boots had long or steep inclines and descents on rough ground and I did feel a little mis guided on one or two occasions but the views from the top soon made you forget asbout the effort it had taken.
The arrangements made at our request worked really well and the flights and transfers were efficient and convenient.
A lovely holiday just a little too quiet on an evening.
By Mrs Bali on 13/10/2016
This was our second time with Headwater. We really enjoyed our holiday. The walks were well chosen and so were the towns where we stayed. The Amalfi coast is stunningly beautuful. Some of the popular walks can get a bit busy - there seemed to be a lot of Americans everywhere. We stayed in 4 different hotels and they were all different in character. The highlight was La Conca del Sogno, a family run hotel in a cove with a beach. Would certainly recommend this holiday.
By Mr Butterfield on 13/10/2016
Vegan vrata hotel had no hot water in our room on first day and only warmish on second day. Ate there and staff seemed stressed and this did not make for a relaxing evening. Not impressed with this hotel.
By Mrs Rees on 13/10/2016
This was our first holiday with Headwater which did not disappoint. The scenery was beautiful, with the contrasting coastal and inland areas. We particularly enjoyed visiting all the medieval villages along the routes, especially Pals and Peratallada, although finding places to stop for refreshments in the smaller villages was sometimes rather hit and miss. The weather was lovely and warm, ideal for cycling, and the route notes were good for the most part. However, some of the forest tracks were a bit harder to cycle along. As regards accommodation, Hotel Sa Punta deserves special mention for its excellent service, superb facilities and the most delicious food of the holiday. Our reps Olivia and Brian gave us great service too. We have been on cycling holidays with other companies before and they provide a small front pannier on the bikes, so perhaps Headwater could consider doing this also.
By Mrs Elfick-wood on 13/10/2016
The itinerary and Alberto the guide were excellent, the hotels a bit of a mixed experience. The Sa Muvara would probably been really nice with better weather, but getting hot water for a shower was a bit hit and miss, and a lot of other members of the group found their rooms very cold. The food was sometimes really good but generally a bit salty and far too much of it. Comparing our experience with a previous holiday (walk in the florentine hills), perhaps we expect too much for basic rustic italian food. The Hotel Dorada was in an excellent position, but I didn't find the rooms that comfortable, and the food rather disappointing although the soups were excellent.
For all the above, it wouldn't put me off having another Italian holiday with you.
By Mrs Bowling on 13/10/2016
My first time in Sardinia, our guide Alberto really brought the island alive. His extensive knowledge of nature, culture and history far exceeded my expectations, a brilliant holiday, highly recommend it.
By Mr Moore on 13/10/2016
This particular holiday, cycling in the River Ebro region, offers the traveller a wonderful variety of scenery and opportunities to explore this relatively unspoiled part of Spain. Value is added by the extremely friendly and accommodating locals. The HW sourced accommodation was superb and the in-house dining second to none. Dining outside of the hotels was relatively cheap and of a very high standard.
Sections of the route instructions contain inaccuracies which, for us, simply added to the fun, though they should perhaps be revisited as they could cause problems for the more diffident.
Our reliable and extremely helpful representative in country did a wonderful job of making us feel welcome and we felt reassured that we could call on her any time in case of a crisis. Well done Triona!
By Mr Cudby on 13/10/2016
The holiday was extremely enjoyable. Our guide was Vanja and she was excellent, We loved Dubrovnik - especially at night after the crowds had gone and the City was all lit up. The walking was good and we particularly enjoyed the walking in Krka National Park.
A little disappointed with Diaclecians Palace in Split - expected it to be more impressive and interesting.
We were impressed by the Dubrovnic Hotel.
By Mr Lockley on 13/10/2016
Another excellent Headwater holiday with a good variation of walks and the opportunity to view birdlife not seen in an English garden.
By Mrs Bryan on 13/10/2016
Wonderful dramatic scenery and fabulous walks. Take care with your choice of walks if you don't have a good head for heights. Some paths are narrow and very near the edges of huge vertical drops.
By Ms Barbour on 13/10/2016
The Heart of Veneto cycling tour was a very positive experience for us. The rides were interesting, the distances appropriate and the cycling notes were very clear. Sarah, our Headwater rep, was very helpful and approachable. Lâ€™Albara, our Agriturisimo accommodation, was perfectly fine, the farm interesting and the meals delicious but there wasnâ€™t a lot to do in the evenings. Happily, we became acquainted with 3 friendly, fellow cyclists from Britain and at our dinners every evening we shared the dayâ€™s experiences amid laughter and lively conversation. We would definitely choose Headwater again but would choose a tour on which we would stay in a different place every evening,
By Ms Linsell on 13/10/2016
Good healthy weeks holiday
By Mr Brown on 13/10/2016
a great way to see a region ,on the back of a well organised itinerary and high quality accomodation
By Mrs Merrill on 13/10/2016
I thought Montenegro was very beautiful. Headwater are an excellent and efficient organisation with well planned holidays.
By Mr McGeoch on 13/10/2016
This holiday has given us the opportunity to see some of the most beautiful villages in Provence under our own steam and away from the crowds you'd find on a typical coach trip The exercise of cycling during the day is a great appetite-sharpener for enjoying some excellent food and local wines in the evening.
By Mr Lamb on 13/10/2016
Another fantastic Headwater cycling holiday! The scenery was amazing, hotels were all high quality and in excellent locations. The cycling was undemanding and very enjoyable, linking up lots of interesting and attractive places. We are already thinking about next year's holiday!
By Mr Kelly on 13/10/2016
Once again, we had a thoroughly enjoyable holiday! Great walking, wonderful locations for our accommodation, excellent food and drink, and as a bonus the company of other like-minded walkers at various points during the week. Excellent route notes and planning - it is definitely what we have come to expect from our Headwater holidays (this was our 10th)
By Mr Burch on 13/10/2016
Good pre-booked accommodation, excellent notes and seamless baggage transfer between locations meant that we could focus on enjoying our cycle ride along the Danube. We would have no hesitation in recommending this holiday to potential future travellers.
By Mrs Stoneham on 13/10/2016
Lovely break, great scenery and quiet routes, good food and wine, well organised.
By Mrs McGill on 13/10/2016
In general the holiday was very good, no complaints. What made the holiday for us was Elisabetta, the guide. She was energetic, informative, great fun and nothing was too much trouble. If I was Headwater I would give her a pay rise and hang onto her for dear life. Ann McGill
By Dr Brech on 13/10/2016
Despite being in a National Park, this was a less rural holiday than we were expecting. While some of the routes are rural in nature, you are never out of sight of a dwelling and you are on, or next to, or crossing, busy roads quite a lot of the time. Italy is also home to a plague of noisy motor bikes and scooters but I guess this is part of the culture! That said, the hotels and the food were mostly very good. We did an extra two days in Teolo which worked well and gave us two days in Padua (easy bus ride) as well as a pleasant local hike. Rep Sarah was as good as we had been led to believe and gave us a most detailed briefing. Her route notes were also excellent.
By Mr Smith on 13/10/2016
Great holiday and well worth doing. fantastic Views which are well worth the climbing to get to the top..
By Mrs Webster on 13/10/2016
Absolutely fantastic, superb hotel a jewel in the island, delicious food well prepared, excellent staff. Beautiful hotel! So many varied and interesting walks away from the tourist areas. One of the best holidays we have had!
We will be returning one day to complete the other walks around the island. Just wish we had been able to stay longer.
By Mrs Loyd on 13/10/2016
A week of discovery! Beautiful towns and landscapes, interesting walking , a great local guide who was tireless in helping us to understand so many different aspects of Puglia - it's history, food, contemporary issues - as well as making it fun. A great group too all added up to a brilliant holiday, thank you.
By Ms Small on 13/10/2016
Our holiday experience was fantastic! We loved walking in the mountains and hearing the sound of cow bells everywhere we went. It was easy to get around on the buses and trains, and the mountain trails were varied and interesting. The lakes were a beautiful colour, and the scenery was stunning wherever we went. The food in the hotel was outstanding, with a 5 course dinner offered on each night of our stay. The hotel's spa facilities were also excellent. I had anticipated a busy hotel with lots of Headwater customers, but apart from me and my friend there were only a few other hotel guests. This meant that the dining room was very quiet and lacked a bit of atmosphere, but the staff were very attentive and looked after us really well. I would definitely recommend the Dolomites to anyone who loves to walk amongst stunning scenery. The most popular trails are obviously busy with other visitors, but it is easy to find quiet routes and paths as there are so many walks to choose from.
By Mr Kennedy on 13/10/2016
The scenery at the destination was absolutely spectacular and will remain in our minds for a very long time - starting with the view from our hotel room!
An absolute must holiday for anyone who likes to have just the right amount of exhaustion, excitement and adrenalin in one day, with the facilities to relax and recoup overnight at the hotel, ready to do it all again the next day!
Being provided with maps and suggested walks before our holiday started meant we made the very best use of our time. Definitely had a WOW factor holiday
By Mrs Melling on 13/10/2016
Lovely holiday with great food. Elaine was an excellent guide and very informative.
By Mrs Gill on 13/10/2016
The Finca was excellent, as were all meals. Our guide Elaine was fantastic,the walks not too long, the week was fun.
By Mrs Wright on 06/10/2016
Anyone of reasonable fitness can walk the Camino, but maybe you should consider grading your Camino walking holiday. One grade for people who are not really used to walking distances and another grade for people who have come to walk at least 25 - 30 km per day. Most of the walkers had booked hotels and albergues in towns and villages. Walkers like to meet up with each other in the evening and share experiences. At one place the hotel pick up was 1 hour 15 minutes late from the agreed time, with no apology or
By Mr Mathieson on 04/10/2016
Very enjoyable holiday overall, staying in good quality hotels. We did find some of the walking a bit more challenging than we had anticipated. It rained on the day we did the Path of the Gods which made it slippery and therefore extra care needed to be taken. We were warned about the 1,000 plus steps down to Positano but maybe more warning about the descent to Marina del Cantone would be helpful for future walkers.
The guidance notes were very accurate on the whole with one or two minor errors. We didn't get lost.
The taxi drivers were all very pleasant and punctual and we had no problems. Our only criticism is that we were not contacted by a local rep. at all. This may have been because we were slightly delayed on arrival ( only half an hour). We also had to confirm our final taxi pick-up ourselves (via the hotel) as this hadn't been communicated to us in advance- a slight worry on the day before we were leaving.
By Mrs Wakefield on 04/10/2016
An enjoyable holiday.
By Mrs Beaney on 04/10/2016
Excellent hotels, really good walking notes (best we've had!), good food available locally. very knowlegable rep.
By Mr Wootton on 04/10/2016
Our journeys on the Castle to Coast Walk took us through some of the most beautiful hill countryside in this relatively unknown region of Croatia. The walks were well-designed, well-described and very enjoyable, and the hotels welcoming and comfortable. Opatija is a gem of a resort and provided an excellent and relaxing conclusion to our trip.
By Mr Erdal on 04/10/2016
The design of the week was very well balanced; the directions astonishingly detailed and accurate; the accommodation superb; Romina the rep absolutely outstandingly excellent. They even got good weather for us. After 22 years of never having an organised holiday we are converts. Could not recommend this more highly.
By Mrs Feely on 04/10/2016
As with all Headwater Holidays experienced so far the Catalan Coastal Walk was a great experience,. The walking was challenging but the notes provided were meticulous and at the end of each day it was a joy to experience the comfortable, characterful hotels in interesting locations. I can't fault Headwater's meticulous arrangements.
By Mr Crawley on 04/10/2016
PThe cycling was not good. Along coastal parts there was rather a lot of pedestrian congestion along the many campsites. Inland some of the tracks were rough shingle
Inland in other places there were too many busy roads. In fact your rep very kindly too us by van over a busy section - it was her idea. The route was not too pretty, but some of the small towns were delightful
Dear Mr Crawley,
Thank you for taking the time to write in with your post-holiday feedback.
We were sorry to read you found the cycling more congested than yo had expected in some areas. As this region increases in popularity it does tend to be busier during high season, this is why, where possible, we take you off the busier roads onto the tracks and paths less travelled, however, this can sometimes mean the paths are not as smooth as the main roads. Please be assured, we do review all of our routes and customer feedback annually and will make any changes or adjustments as required.
We were pleased you found the service provided by our local rep useful and that she was on hand to offer you a lift during a particularly busy section of the route. We were also pleased you enjoyed your time spent in the small towns.
In closing, we would like to thank you for choosing Headwater this year and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Ms Evans on 04/10/2016
Tuscany for connessesours puts us in the heart of the southern Tuscany countryside and the family-run, well-appointed hotel (excellent service and food) was set amongst sweeping vineyards and cornfields. The walking notes provided never let us down and afforded the best views and experiences of the area.
By Mr Jones on 04/10/2016
A great holiday if you like good food and wine but the walking was slightly disappointing. Although the views were sometimes good, there was too much walking on the roads.
By Mr Napier on 04/10/2016
Mostly excellent, but disappointed there were more main roads than on previous cycling trips with Headwater.
In our opinion Alberobello should be dropped - too much of a tourist trap and not a 'Headwater' type destination.
By Mrs Shepherd on 04/10/2016
A pleasant way to experience 'off the beaten' track regions through a very manageable itinerary and allowing for a high level of independence whilst in the comfort of knowing the back up is there if required. The quality of both bikes and hotels excellent - would use Headwater again.
By Mis Pillar on 04/10/2016
Great trip: stunning scenery & interesting/beautiful towns; lots of features packed into 1 week; lovely people and SaÅ¡a guided us around her country with enthusiasm. Wonderful time.
By Mr Bayliss on 04/10/2016
On arriving in our first hotel in Spello the views from our bedroom window took our breathe away. The whole Holiday was full of wonderful views, great food,and lovely accommodation. This alongside some challenging walks which made us feel alive and happy to be in such an unspoilt place like Umbria. Definitely recommend this walking holiday in the Footsteps of Saint Francis of Assisi.
By Mrs Lamont on 04/10/2016
Lovely place to stay, great food. Wine a little expensive at the farm.
By Mrs Chapman on 04/10/2016
A guided trip with only 4 people could be difficult if the travellers didn't get on. The ferry/sea transfers were difficult as there were fewer than in the summer timetable which meant we had to waste holiday time waiting around. The main guide wasn't allowed to show us round towns and we could have had another local guide in each town to make the experience more reliable. Stromboli climb was done by the other couple who found the downhill really tough. They took 6.5 hours which was more than advertised. We opted for a boat trip to see the volcanic display This could be advertised a an option in the brochure.
The holiday was enjoyable, weather not always fine and sunny as expected. Etna in September apparently is often unsafe to walk to the top. We got up 3000m. Walk to the top of Vulcano ggod, Genny an excellent Geological guide.
By Mr Norman on 04/10/2016
route notes could be better but otherwise great scenery and people
By Mr Valentine on 04/10/2016
A lovely area to holiday, with beautiful scenery, and great hotels (we particularly liked the Mas and the Bastide for their settings, and the welcome from the owner of the Hotel Ste Anne was extremely helpful and welcoming - she had lots of ideas about what to do and see around Apt, and gave us details of rides in the area). Our first reps were clearly new to the area but were very helpful. We'd definitely book another Headwater holiday.
The notes for Day 2 (the section for Isle-sur-la-Sorgue to Fontaine de Vaucluse) are confusing. We think you've got your D25 and D24 mixed up, and perhaps the distances as a result as well.
The notes for Day 4 (the section for Roussilon to St Saturnin les Apt) in the paragraph starting 'Continuing on, with the mines...' mentions 'Go straight over the roundabout...) You would only do this if returning back to the roundabout after having taken the 1st exit to go to the shops and the cafÃ©. If you hadn't taken the 1st exit, but taken the 3rd, you'd be left wondering where the second roundabout was that you were supposed to go straight across!
By Mr Shelton on 04/10/2016
Quinta do Furao was lovely, very welcoming staff, a stunning location. The walk along the coast from the hotel was amazing. The local representative, Eduardo from MB Travel, met us to discuss the week's walks and was very helpful, knowledgeable and enthusiastic.
Serra Golf was a beautiful building, but the staff took two days to sort out our lack of hot water (we had a room in the old house) and had forgotten to provide a packed lunch on our morning of departure.
The levada walks were splendid - breathtaking views around every corner. The guide notes were good, but we could have done with a few more arrows or signs on the path. On the last walking day we had an alternative walk due to the forest fires of previous weeks. This was not nearly as good as the previous walks - I am sure there are other walks available.
Quinta da Bella Vista was a a lovely hotel set in beautiful grounds - a long way from the centre of Funchal and the hotel shuttle bus does not run on Saturday afternoon and Sunday. There are local buses into town. Five course dinners served every evening, but after a day's walking you just want a big bowl of something on the table.
Many thanks to Headwater staff for their efforts to arrange our holiday around our preferred dates.
By Mr Orrett on 04/10/2016
Holiday made best of local area, well planned with good quality hotels and restaurants chosen
By Mr Reilly on 04/10/2016
Great Amalfi Coast experience, with friendly local guide Luigi to ensure that the very best of the area is experienced. His guided walks were superb, and the Garden Hotel in Ravello was particularly friendly and delightful with scenic views. Walking is a great way to enjoy the delights of this superb coastline, with not too many exertions, but a level of general fitness is needed. The trip to Pompeii was very good, Libby our guide ensured we saw the ' must see' parts and navigated us expertly through the sometimes busy parts. The other included excursions to the local Pizza making rural restaurant near Sorrento was very enjoyable, while the visits to the two lovely villas In Ravello were a brief cultural bonus. Overall a very worthwhile 7 day Amalfitana experience. Thanks for a lovely week.
By Mr Hutchison on 04/10/2016
Exercise, fresh air, excellent food and drink and, as ever with Headwater, getting to know a new area pretty well.
By Mr Winter on 04/10/2016
Absolutely brilliant, all the walk instructions easy to follow and the hotel acomodation and scenery magnificent.
By Mr Newberry on 29/09/2016
A great introduction to the pleasure of a cycling holiday, wonderful varied scenery with ever changing views at every turn and well chosen stopovers.
By Mr Harrison on 29/09/2016
Excellent way to experience the beauty and friendliness of Croatia and in particular the Istrian coast. Bikes excellent and fit for the sometimes stoney cycle paths. Not as daunting as we had envisioned bearing in mind we are both over 70. Rep excellent and very helpful. All accommodation is well chosen and perfectly located. A cycling holiday with an emphasis on the holiday aspect.
By Mrs Freedman on 28/09/2016
A healthy way to explore a new part of the world, if you want it to be! Very easy to reward oneself after a cycle with fine wine and food, but after all it is a holiday! Travelling self guided allows one to be completely flexible, but others might prefer to have a leader to avoid unnecessary cycling, should one take the wrong route.
Would certainly recommend this type of holiday for a group of friends.
By Ms Skinner on 28/09/2016
They said we were mad- ' too hot!', ' too hilly!' ' too far' - they were wrong! We went in August and we are both only moderately fit and over 60. We have never enjoyed a holiday so much. Because you are cycling there is always a breeze. I would recommend taking ' camelpacks' ; these helped us to drink enough water and kept the water cool. Together with factor 50 liberally applied in the morning we never burned nor were we uncomfortable.
There was always a place to grab a juicy nectarine, cheese and bread en route and a swim at the end of the day before delicious evening meals in all the hotels.
We were greeted like royalty and slept like babies. I am officially in love with Italy.
So , any improvements? Yes, we went awol from Torgiano so that we could spend a whole day in Assisi. Assisi is so beautiful that it deserves more than a quick exhausted ramble in the middle of a cycle so, personally I would have preferred to stay closer to the this wonderful town rather than in Torgiano which was rather small and a little uninteresting.
Spoleto is also stunning and we extended our holiday both here and in Rome. Can't wait for the next one.... Now to choose.
By Mr Andrews on 28/09/2016
We found the Bavarian countryside quite fascinating. Everything was good, the scenery, the walks, the accommodation and food. We also met interesting people who were also on the holiday as we usually do. Earlier this month we had a twenty year re-union with four friends we met on one of your holidays in Corsica.
By Mr Jones on 28/09/2016
We had promised ourselves a return to the Finca since our first brilliant experience a few years ago. We were not disappointed. Fabulous food, walks, & company in a glorious spot....we will return.
By Mrs Cameron on 27/09/2016
Great contrasts in locations so holiday very accurately titled!
By Mr Schafer on 27/09/2016
Wonderful trip with nice lodging and wonderful varied hikes.
Arrival and Transfers:
This was our 6th Headwater trip and we were joined by another couple on
their first trip with Headwater. We flew into Heathrow a day prior to the
start of the trip and proceeded to make our way to Weymouth. We had considered
using a coach/rail transfer but ultimately decided on a private transfer as it was less
expensive for a party of four. We used Thompson Airport Cars (Â£145.00 for a
private minibus). The driver met us at the terminal, was very professional, gave
us some ideas for our time in Weymouth and drove us to the front of the Weymouth B+B.
This was a very relaxing, efficient, and stress-free way to get from Heathrow to Weymouth
for the start of the walk. While in Weymouth we purchased our return train tickets from
Poole to Waterloo Station, taking advantage of a Â£16 off peak, advance purchase rate on
We had arranged to meet with the local agent (Roy) shortly after our arrival and he went over
the particulars of each day and gave us a great overview of the hiking, lodging, logistics and
some restaurant and activity recommendations. He was very friendly and has a great sense of humor.
Weymouth B+B: Excellent central location across from the waterfront and bus stops. Very plain but
comfortable rooms. Our room faced a courtyard and was quiet. Our travel companions room faced the
side street and, maybe because of the bank holiday, they encountered a lot of street noise late into the
night. The breakfast consisted of a small buffet and cooked to order eggs, sausage, mushrooms etc.
Alford House (Corfe Castle): Very Nice B&B on the main street about a five minute walk from the center
of Corfe Castle. Our host, Suzie offered us refreshments upon our arrival, dinner recommendations and
a cooked to order breakfast. The room was large, nicely furnished, quiet and very comfortable.
Purbeck House (Swanage): A beautiful hotel about a 5 minute walk uphill from the center of town. Our room was
a nice size room up several flights of stairs facing a courtyard. The room was fairly quiet, but as it faced
south west tended to be a little warm. Breakfast was a combination of a buffet/cooked to order.
Harbor Heights (Poole): A modern, comfortable, air conditioned hotel that was about a 25-30 min walk from the ferry dock.
Great views of the harbor. Two strong recommendations if you stay in this hotel. Ask the local rep/headwater about taking
the local bus from the ferry to the hotel. After the wonderful hike from Swanage to the Poole Chain ferry, the walk to the
hotel was along a road and not particularly scenic. Also, the hotel is not very close to other restaurants and while the on-site
restaurant was good, the available dining times were somewhat limited the night of our stay. It might be worthwhile to ask the
rep (or call ahead) to secure a reservation at the time you want
The hikes were accurately described in the program and the the directions were clear and easy to follow. The 1+ boot description
was accurate. Three of the hikes had wonderful coastal views , while the the hike from Corfe Castle to Swanage provided expansive
views across the countryside.
As I mentioned, we arrived a day early in Weymouth and took the local bus to the cliffs at West Bay and explored Abbotsbury.
On our short day in Swanage, we finished up our hike by 2:30 and were able to take a tour boat along the coast from Swanage to
Poole (and Return). This was a great, relaxing way to see the next day's coastal hike from the sea. I would highly recommend it.
By Mrs Little on 26/09/2016
A wonderful taste of Provencal scenery, wine and food!
By Ms Nicolson on 23/09/2016
Catalan Coastal Walk has it all: wonderful walks, stunning scenery and fabulous hotels - one of the best!
By Mr McGinn on 23/09/2016
Good, bikes, good hotels, delicious food and wine, what more could you wish for.
By Mrs Campbell on 23/09/2016
Great Fun. Lovely area and great cycling.
By Mr Kamper on 23/09/2016
Lovely coastline easy cycling
By Mr Hodgetts on 23/09/2016
The walks were well described and excellently waymarked, though we thought that certain sections were 2 boot+ especially with high humidity in hot weather. This is true of the continuous climb out of Spello on the high level route to Assisi, and the ascent to the Rifugio on the last day,which is ludicrously timed in the walk notes at 45 minutes. The CAI estimate is 70 and we did it in 80.
The accommodation in Assisi is out of town but this allows for a truly super pool. Sadly the Tavola may not survive as the need for small investment was clear but not forthcoming. Victor and Filippo are lovely and super helpful but 3 power cuts in one day could have been avoided by investing in a small back-up generator. Also there are only the two of them - we heard that the day we left Filippo was stung on the mouth by a hornet - which meant no chef. It is worth noting also that without a car you are stuck at La Tavola with nothing to do if it rains - and boy can it rain!
La Bastiglia and Le Silve are great, the latter is out of this world for views and food.
We would seriously recommend an extra day at the start of the holiday to acclimatise and also to spend a day in Spello which is spectacularly beautiful and otherwise largely missed on the normal schedule.
We fell in love with Umbria, which is Italy as you really don't expect - green, lush and verdant. The craft beers are superb - who knew the Italians were so into it. One range called Monasterio di San Biagio is brewed by the Agriturismo which runs La Tavola. Finally the Umbrian people were friendly, helpful and endlessly welcoming.
By Mrs Liebster on 21/09/2016
While this walk was quite challenging in places, partly because of the high temperatures in early September, it was thoroughly enjoyable and satisfying. It was very well planned and the gastronomic aspects were excellent and exceeded our expectations. This is a much under-rated part of Italy and very well worth exploring. The views, the wine and the food are outstanding.
By Mis Horkan on 21/09/2016
Beautiful verdant area to walk in. Fantastic views. Lots of options for rest days.
By Mrs Conroy on 15/09/2016
Croatia is a beautiful country and we enjoyed the contrast between hilltop hotels and two nights on the coast. We did however find the walking tough going at times due to the heat at the beginning of September - 30+ degrees. Maybe that is why there were only 4 of us on the trip, others chose a cooler time of year! The organisation was excellent as we transferred hotels, our Rep and drivers were friendly and very helpful. The food was slightly disappointing as there was little fish on offer until we got to Opatije. The meal at Hotel Vela Vrata was very good, we wished we'd eaten there both nights.
We shall await the new season's brochure and plan next year's holiday after checking the expected temperatures.
By Dr Duthie on 15/09/2016
All good. If the receptionists at Palazzo Galletti Abb would ever remove the telephone receiver from their ear and make eye contact it would have been excellent.
By Mr Miller on 15/09/2016
Simply stunning scenery and a really lovely daily cycle!
By Mrs Wege on 15/09/2016
Very good, but next time would try a higher grade of route
By Mrs Meakin on 14/09/2016
Excellent base, fantastic views
By Mr O'Sullivan on 14/09/2016
excellent. very informative guides and route plans with excellent accommodation provided
By Mr Bennett on 14/09/2016
An excellent first bike trip to the Loire, with 8 nights seeming just about right. We could not have eaten much more of the multiple courses of excellent food. Lovely experience to visit so many interesting towns, villages and chateaux en route, without having to drag the luggage around. Some beautiful countryside and riverside landscapes to explore. Comprehensive maps, directions and travel tips - as well as very helpful and professional Reps - were very useful to help us get the most out of the trip.
By Mr Heyes on 14/09/2016
Our first holiday with Headwater but it won't be the last. We enjoyed seeing France from a different angle and at a slower pace.
By Ms Marshall on 14/09/2016
This cycling holiday was an excellent way to visit the relatively unknown region of Emilia Romagna. The cycling was relatively easy - if hot (in August/September) and the stopover places were really varied and interesting. The accommodation at Le Occare was particularly good, with Cristina's excellent cooking, warm welcome and attention to detail. The old house is beautiful, spacious and comfortable. Our stay there was just very very special.
By Mrs Caruthers on 14/09/2016
If you like being outdoors and lots of exercise, this is a perfect balance to stay active and work up an appetite to indulge in the gastronomy and wine. Compared to the South East of England the lack of traffic and potholes is wonderful!
By Mrs Tod on 14/09/2016
Meysset's food was good but not Gourmand-Tuna kebabs? Monrecour was lovely but we were in annex and didn't eat there as a wedding had taken it over! We couldn't eat in the Chateau due to a wedding.The restaurant ( Petite Tonnelle) in Beynac was excellent instead. the owner of Chateau took us there! Glycines was over the top,to us, food wise, and they tried to suggest very expensive wines! Laborderie was the best for us, good food, nice staff/owner!
We had difficulty understanding the last day's route after Lac Rouge and there was an annoying delay at Meysset waiting for our bags due to a communication missunderstanding somewhere between hotel and taxi driver. We waited 90 mins plus for them when they were in fact there! We were not staying there that night so we were late arriving at our next hotel.Elisabeth is aware.
By Mr Plimmer on 14/09/2016
The Azores are just wonderful; superb sights and experiences. The accommodation was very good and the travelling well planned (though two flights were delayed). In my opinion though too many islands are visited in just one week and the inter-island travelling is significant. There is enough to do and see on Faial and Sao Miguel for a month let alone a week.
By Mrs Bryan on 14/09/2016
Lovely route, fantastic scenery, quite challenging in some places and paths a little higher than expected for a person with vertigo.
By Mis Nair on 14/09/2016
A good holiday with manageable walks , nice weather and stunning coastal and countryside views . Best was Corfe Castle , a lovely little village overlooked by the impressive castle ruins.
Accommodation fine except for the B + B in Weymouth ; room cheerless and austere , and location rather noisy ; was woke twice in the night by people shouting and swearing in the street below.
By Mr Simkiss on 14/09/2016
The group became a bunch of very friendly fellow holiday makers in no time. The local guide was experienced and competent.
By Ms Garvey on 14/09/2016
Valley was lovely, walks really well described and graded, we had such good days.
Only downside was hotel - they made us feel very unwelcome in the bar for pre-dinner drinks - one time the barman told us if we didn't go through straight away we wouldn't get any food after 8pm ( this was at 7.20) so we rushed our drinks and were then kept waiting for 20 mins for the appetiser. They called our room at 6.10 one night to say we had to go down early cos there was a party in and a buffet but we'd not had any warning of this in advance. The dining room and buffet table was full of flies! and the room was terribly hot. generally we ended up going straight to our room after early dinner and there was nothing else to do - no nice cosy bar for a nightcap !!
Dear Ms Garvey,
Thank you for taking the time to write in with your post-holiday feedback. It was great to read that you found the valley lovely and enjoyed the walks. We agree, this is a beautiful area of Austria and are pleased you had an enjoyable holiday.
We were however disappointed to read that the Hotel did not meet with your expectations in some areas.
Unfortunately, the Hotel Manager was unaware of the issues you reported on the conclusion of your holiday and because of this was unable to resolve your issues during your stay. Please be assured, had she been aware, she would have taken steps to ensure your issues were resolved. She has since discussed your feedback with the Restaurant Manager to ensure his team are providing the correct information regarding opening times. She would also like to reassure you that she takes her guests health & safety seriously and follows strict guidelines set by Austrian regulators in relation to this area and would like to assure you measures are in place to protect all food areas. We will continue to work closely with the Hotelier to ensure they continue to deliver the high quality service and accommodation standards our customers have come to expect.
We would like to thank you for providing your constructive feedback and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mrs Johnson on 14/09/2016
Overall - excellent.
By Mr Tait on 12/09/2016
A beautiful area of Spain particularly the coastline with some wonderful accessible walks . Longer walks can be challenging on the warmer days !
By Mrs Capper on 12/09/2016
A very enjoyable holiday. A good opportunity to see a foreign country. Safe cycling routes and good hotels.
Olivia and Brian were good reps, giving us enough local information without going in excessive detail. We felt they were available if needed, but fortunately did we not have to contact them at all (apart from travel during the stay)
By Mrs Jones on 12/09/2016
Cycling was mainly along flat cycle ways and quiet roads although some of the cycle track surfaces were a little bumpy. The hotels were a very good standard, meals, whether taken within or outside the hotels, were very good, especially the fresh fish dishes. Porto was well worth seeing and an interesting city. A bus trip to Costa Nova from Aveiro is worth doing to see the pretty painted houses. The cycle along the estuary and nature reserve was very enjoyable watching out for flamingoes and other seabirds and we were lucky to be doing this at low to half tide when the wading birds and lots of local fisherman, digging for cockles and clams, can be seen. On the beach at Praia de Mira we were lucky enough to see the local fishermen hauling in their nets full of sardines. The final cycle from Praia de Mira along the water canals was a lovely cycle too.
By Mr Nicol on 09/09/2016
everythink is so planned so well . from the minute you land to the minute you leave
By Mr Holt on 09/09/2016
A really lovely week touring a rural area of Provence. The scenery within the Luberon valley, protected by the two wooded and rocky ridges was delightful, shame we missed the lavender in bloom (late August) but the fruit trees and vineyards were pretty scenic. The grading is fair, one or two climbs to the hillside villages worth it for the views and a welcome cool drink! Accommodation on the whole, whilst modest, was acceptable, the highlights being the pool at Les Mas de Senecole and the 'Country Home' lounge at L'Hermitage. Not terribly taken with St Saturnin les Apt as a stop, either as a village and particularly unimpressed with the Hotel St Hubert. Routes well planned on country lanes and bike tracks but still offering interesting stop off points - we loved the Caves at Thouzon, not least for its cool temperatures on a hot day! Great reliable support from reps Laura and Tim.
Dear Mr Holt,
Thank you for taking the time to write in with your post-holiday feedback. It was great to read you enjoyed a lovely week in Provence.
We were however sorry to read of your disappointment with Hotel St Hubert. Over the course of the summer, we monitor the feedback we receive from our customers. We then use this feedback to help us to improve our holidays for future customers. With this in mind, we have made the decision to change this hotel for the 2017 season. We are sure you will agree, this will help us continue to enhance this holiday.
We were pleased to read you rated our reps support highly. I am sure they were delighted to read your comments.
In closing, we would like to thank you for choosing Headwater and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mrs McKay on 07/09/2016
Beautiful scenery. Cycling hard at times - some demanding hills. Hotels very good with individual attractions. Pools a great asset at end of a hard day cycling or on day off. Lots of good (and cheap) cafes on route. Interesting places to visit including Montefalco. Assisi very busy and expensive.
Overall a great holiday.
By Mr Stocks on 07/09/2016
Headwater provide gently active (this interpretation depends on one's level of fitness and expectation!) holidays in comfortable, interesting hotels and places. The restaurants vary, some are better than others, but in general they reach a very satisfactory standard. I think they are a great way to spend time exploring an area but with always the fall back of a pleasant hotel.
By Ms Cockshott on 07/09/2016
Easy cycle, a lot of free-wheeling, well signed routes and amazing views. Great hotels in good locations. We enjoy the included meals & were not disappointed with those on this trip but would have liked more. Would certainly recommend even though the first cycle day was very rainy. Paid for an upgrade in Merano and ended up with the penthouse loft suite - very nice, shame we were only there 2 nights.
By Mrs Frank on 07/09/2016
A perfect holiday for cycling softies, we loved the fact that most of it was on beautiful scenic paths, (we certainly wouldn't have enjoyed cycling on Italy's busy roads). We loved the days in between visiting historic villages and sites and really enjoyed the changing landscape as we descended from the alps in Slovenia to the coast in north east Italy. The handbook provided by Headwater was very useful when looking for things to do and visit on the non cycling days.
By Mrs Cox on 06/09/2016
Beautiful quiet region of Italy. Family at L'Albara are very welcoming. The food is excellent. A real get away from it all experience. This is our second visit and it was just as good the second time. Would happily go back again.
By Ms Catterall on 05/09/2016
Lots of planning 'legwork' saved by going through Headwater. Hotels all carefully chosen for their individuality. We had the back up of a large organisation but the personal service of, what seemed, a much smaller one. Great standard of evening meal on the Gastronomic tour.
By Mr Roberts on 05/09/2016
We were initially nervous about a holiday which was managed locally by an agency other than Headwater. Our previous experience had not been great. However we need not have worried. Donau Touristik were hugely well organised and the bikes were excellent. The cycling was just about the flattest we had ever experienced and, partly because of the excellent weather, partly because of the excellent food and accommodation, this was as enjoyable a holiday as we have ever had.
A couple of small blemishes. At Bregenz on the first night we were served only a three course meal instead of the advertised four. (We only realised subsequently about this when we returned on the final night).
Hotel Buchornerhof was not in the same league as the other accommodation. We were served the wrong food on one evening and the air/conditioning leaked. The staff's hearts did not seem to be in their work as it was in the other hotels.
One warning - wine in the hotel restaurants (especially the Swiss ones) is very expensive indeed.
These are small gripes. It was a great holiday and I'd do it all again anytime.
By Mr Maher on 30/08/2016
Our party consisted of Grandma and Granddad (late 60's), Son (48) and Grandson (10). We were all more than catered for and thoroughly enjoyed our activity holiday. We had an informative break down of the area from our reps, Colin and Jill and the map we were given + bus timetables were very useful throughout the week. Our bicycles were easy to ride and comfortable.
Our first outing was on the afternoon of arrival when we decided to visit the nearby village. There were very few days when we didn't use the bikes to visit nearby towns and villages and the routes were usually flat and safe for our 10 year old. Our grandson particularly enjoyed the toboggan run but warns other would be enthusiasts that it is possible to fall off!! He was, however, proud of his scraped leg! Got straight back on and finished the course.
The grandparents tackled the cycle ride to lake Schwazen which included a steep climb. We walked some of the way as it was very hot - but we made it and were very proud of ourselves especially as there were many people overtaking us on electric bikes! (a good idea if you are not used to cycling). We particularly enjoyed our day at the Salt Mines, using the local bus and train + a ferry to get to Hallstatt (a stunning place). The salt mines were great fun and a unique experience. We also visited the Ice Caves (by local buses) - also fascinating.
The boys hired an eco boat and also sampled tubing on the lake. Crazy golf and the train up the mountain was fab + the cable car up Katrin. The walk down the mountain was pretty tough, though out 10 year old completed the whole day without a murmur. Catching the bus back outside the Spar on the main road was a good idea as sustenance was required!!
Last, but not least, the hotel was superb - so friendly and the food was spectacular! Thank you Headwater for a great holiday, though we did need a rest on our return.
By Mrs Riviere on 30/08/2016
This is a great family holiday: the cycling was pretty easy for all of us (the children were 15, 13 and 10), but there was enough challenge for us to feel proud of ourselves by the end of the week. The routes were incredibly easy to follow, and took us through wonderfully varied terrain - through beautiful fields of sunflowers, past vineyards, through shady forests and along the rivers Cher and Loir. Every day brought something new to see or do. The roads were all quiet and there were lots of well-maintained cycle paths. The hotels were well-chosen and welcoming, and the only downside of the week was that we ate far too much delicious food! The back-up from James and Hazel, the local reps, was fantastic, and the bikes themselves were excellent. We're looking forward to another cycling holiday soon!
By Mr Francies on 30/08/2016
Harder work than I expected - August too hot for long cycles - Restaurants selected weere good
By Mr Clegg on 30/08/2016
Good summer walking in a lovely valley. Not as spectacular as the Jungfrau region, but impressive. Great to have passes for most (but not all ) of the walks. Good cooking at Alfa Soleil, though watch out - heavy handed in cooking with cream.
Even in bad weather there are walks one can do.
By Mr Kelleher on 30/08/2016
We had a fantastic time on the Classic Swiss Alps walking holiday. Everything was organised for us - from the flight to the journey to the hotel and details on the walks. The hotel staff were all very friendly and extremely helpful. The food was the surprise of the trip, it was delicious!
The walks and the scenery was spectacular, and the suggested routes were all brilliant. There was also enough flexibility in the suggested guide to vary the hiking to your level of ability.
Overall, we had a brilliant time!
By Mr Self on 30/08/2016
The countryside was pretty and the places we stayed in had narrow, windy roads barely wide enough for a car which were intriguing to explore. Snorklling was fun and there were fish to see from waist height just standing in the water. The cycling was not overly challenging but the heat had to be managed with plenty of water and early starts.
By Mrs Mercer on 30/08/2016
Amazing food, a warm welcome and wonderful hill top towns and rolling scenery worthy of an Unesco designation.
By Mr Davies on 30/08/2016
This was our first cycling holiday abroad so we were looking for a central base from which we could explore on a daily basis rather than living out of suitcases. With hindsight I'm not sure we could have chosen better. The accommodation was superb (in particular Angelina's cooking!), the cycle routes of the right length (such that we had time to ride the mornings and relax in the afternoons) and there were opportunities to visit Vicenza or go further afield.
By Mrs Frames on 30/08/2016
Overall had a fantastic holiday walking along the Jurassic coast. We were extremely lucky with the weather and pre-booked all but one of our evening meals (using Trip advisor) to ensure they too were of an excellent standard. The accommodation provided varied in style but all were scrupulously clean and offered an excellent selection of food at breakfast; the four star accommodation at the end of the holiday which included access to a heated outdoor pool and spa was especially welcome after all the walking. The route notes were excellent; very easy to follow.
By Mr Twiss on 30/08/2016
The ride down from Bled to Grado was a great trip. Except for the two short days at the end of the trip our days were full of wonderful scenery and beautiful towns. The majority of our hotels exceeded expectations being in great locations with good service and food. Stopover destinations were interesting and Udine, Palmanova and Grado were especial delights. Support from the Slovenian team was good and as usual the Headwater experience was one we will repeat.
By Mrs Granville on 30/08/2016
Great hotels and food - a great trip in a beautiful region..
By Mrs Fuller on 30/08/2016
lovely holiday with easy cycling through attractive countryside and interesting hotels each with their own charms.
By Mrs Clark on 30/08/2016
Wonderful way to see a country on a bike, real sense of achievement when you arrive at a new destination by bike. A fair amount of exercise - not too strenuous, but much better than sitting on a sunbed all week.
By Mr York on 30/08/2016
We've done several similar cycling holidays in Europe and this was up there with the best.
By Mr Barr on 30/08/2016
We thought about doing a holiday like this before, but hadn't quite got round to it, so we jumped in at the deep end not really knowing what to expect. The country side is stunning and the views from the top we well worth the climb up. The organisation was perfect, the accommodation great, the food fantastic, and all the hotleliers were very friendly, just make sure you take a good pair of boots to avoid Hobbit foot. We will definitely do another of these trip through Headwater and would thoroughly recommend them to others.
By Mr Byatt on 30/08/2016
Excellent customer service, communication and support. Very good walking guides and local information. Wonderful location.
By Mr Paterson on 30/08/2016
Quite demanding. 9 days is a long walking holiday.
By Mr Berndsen on 23/08/2016
Great cycling. Authentic hamlets, nice quiet route.
By Mr Bridges on 23/08/2016
Bikes and Cycling routes excellent. Very good choices of varied hotels - all very good locations. The Brittany coast is best seen by bike!
By Mrs Singleton on 23/08/2016
Elizabeth was friendly, efficient and helpful tour rep. The food and accommodation were generally superb, especially at Hostellerie Fenelon, where the staff made special efforts with our 9 year old. We particuarly liked reading about the experiences of others in the Headwater Blue Book, which gave us useful clues for what to do on the 'non-canoeing' days. It also helped us plan for the weather which was variable, ranging from very hot to thunderstorms. We would highly recommend canoeing and cycling the Dordogne which is a welcoming and very attractive area of France. Our children really enjoyed themselves. We are glad that we didn't try it with children any younger because after four canoeing days, our youngest (9) was tired! The pools at each hotels were a particular hit. QuercyLand, the children's water park at Souillac, proved something of a lifesaver when we realised that we weren't going to be able to cycle because of illness.
By Mr Breach on 23/08/2016
A great holiday, well organised and not as physically demanding as we imagined. Steve was a very knowledgeable and accommodating host. Please let him know that I was reunited with my wedding ring and that I think we found the hidden aircraft factory that he told us about.
By Ms Cutts on 23/08/2016
Kandersteg is the most perfect setting - the beauty of the mountains, lakes and meadows is breathtaking! The walking options are fabulous - but remember to take your poles for those steep downhill sections! The staff at the hotel were welcoming and so helpful - a real plus. A wonderful holiday!
By Mr Otter on 23/08/2016
Croatia and the Istrian Coastline are a gem and offer a variety of historic and scenic opportunities.
By Mr Mullan on 23/08/2016
Headwater never fails to please. We have holidayed with them on three occasions now, love their routes, their choice of hotels and attention to every detail.
By Mrs Jackson on 23/08/2016
Being able to easily visit several locations made the holiday much more interesting, and so nice not to have to think about where to park the car. Electric bikes gave us so much freedom to see more things at our age (66 and 76!)
By Ms Kimsey on 23/08/2016
We enjoyed our holiday in the lovely countryside and the cycling routes were scenic but it would have been nice to cycle past some lavender fields as they feature so prominently in postcards and appear in the brochure. We particularly enjoyed the traditional country hotel at the beginning of our holiday including breakfasting outdoors and the outdoor dining and leisure area of Montmirail was particularly nice. It is nice to return from a cycle to a relaxing swim. The food and wine is generally excellent and gives the opportunity to try some regional specialities. We really enjoyed our holiday.
By Mrs Ricketts on 23/08/2016
We had a lovely cycling holiday on the Cotes to Ventoux tour. The reps were great in picking us up and explaining about the bikes and timings etc. The hotels were lovely especially the first 2, which had the best food too! It was nice cycling along at our own time and the notes were good in explaining where to go so didn't get lost.
By Mrs Saxby on 23/08/2016
As a family of six, headwater is a great holiday choice for us. We enjoy spending the time together and the activities give us a shared focus and shared sense of achievement. The children age between 16 and eight, and they all enjoyed the holiday. It challenged their palates as well as their legs, as most of the hotels don't offer kids menus, but this worked out fine and they all discovered things they didn't know they might like. Canoeing was harder work than expected, but such a beautiful way to see the river. I really love headwater holidays, this is our third time and it definitely won't be our last. Now that all the children are confidently able to cycle we will try some more ambitious ones next time.
By Mr Andrews on 23/08/2016
This was our second holiday with Headwater. The first was a group walk about 7 years ago in Tuscany which was outstanding. The hotels, the reps and the food were just as good this time, but the walking was disappointing. The walks were very isolated and much of the time either through boring woodland which all looks the same or vineyards, which also all look the same. I am a teacher and therefore have to holiday during School holidays. Unfortunately we could not find group walks to suit during this period.
One complaint is that in all the hotels we stayed at we were allocated the worst rooms in the hotel by any standards. In Villa Beccaris, for example, we were the nearest room to the tradesmen's entrance. At Hotel Le Torri there was no air conditioning so needed windows open all night. We were given a room facing the street and were woken up very early by traffic noise. No balcony either.
By Mr Sheridan on 23/08/2016
The holiday was extremely relaxing. Travel arrangements, accommodation, table booking and baggage transfer were all handled professionally without fuss or drama, giving us the complete freedom to enjoy our walking tour.
The quality of the accommodation and the wonderful restaurants probably exceeded our expectations. Whilst not an inexpensive holiday we did we feel got value for money and lasting memories.
By Mr Jackson on 23/08/2016
A superb holiday, tailored exactly to our needs and specifications. Our reception from our reps, Luke and Eleanor, was outstanding: nothing was too much. Very personable and up-beat - exactly what you want on holiday. Headwater's hotels are second to none, in perfect locations and with wonderful facilities. I can not recommend Headwater holidays high enough.
By Mrs Latchford on 23/08/2016
Would thoroughly recommend this excellent holiday combining wonderful views, varied cycling, but predominantly downhill, welcoming hotels and lovely food.
By Mrs Rawle on 23/08/2016
Very good cycling with very few up-hill stretches, lots to see and do en route - we would gladly do the holiday again. Bikes were comfortable and easy to use. The routes are largely on cycle paths that kept us feeling safe from traffic. All the hotels made us feel very welcome. Everyone seemed to understand pidgin Italian or German, or English so communication was rarely a problem. M Tours reps were reliable and helpful.
By Mrs Madeiros on 23/08/2016
we loved it. you make the right choices. you care for detail. you are committed and reliable. you do all the hand work. we just turned up and paid. great!
By Mrs Moynihan on 23/08/2016
We had a superb holiday cycling in the Loire Valley. At times I felt i was cycling through a picture postcard, the scenery was so beautiful. The cycling was manageable for our 12 year old twins and the bikes were an excellent standard. The roads were quiet and the French were very polite and patient with cyclists (unlike British drivers!). The food was excellent quality
By Mrs Shorney on 23/08/2016
Beautiful scenery, wonderful dining and comfortable cycling in a lovely part of the country
By Mr Horne on 23/08/2016
Fantastic location with a variety of interesting and diverse walks in an unspoilt part of Spain. The hotel, hospitality and food can't be faulted and Miguel and Inma are fantastic hosts with detailed knowledge of the walks and surrounding area.
By Mr Davies on 23/08/2016
This was my fourth holiday with Headwaters and have enjoyed them all
By Mrs Humphries on 23/08/2016
An excellent holiday. Well organised and great hotels. The walks were fantastic with clear instructions. We took the telecabine to gain some height where we could and I would recommend that particularly on days 2 and 6. The grading of the walks is accurate.
By Mr Crockett on 23/08/2016
Great way to explore Italy.
By Mr Timothy on 23/08/2016
Great holiday. Our rep Sarah was really helpful and ensured everything ran smoothly. Was sick on first day of arrival. Sarah and the people running the hotel helped me straight away so that I was able to get better and enjoy a great holiday. The scenery is stunning and people so friendly and helpful. Also the food was delicious in every place we stayed. You would pay an awful lot for that standard of food in the UK. We went in July so the weather was really hot in the afternoon so make sure you take lots of shade and water breaks.Was a fun holiday.
By Mrs Anderson on 23/08/2016
We had a very good relaxed holiday, with Sarah giving alternative choices and lifts on days that were too hot to walk the whole distance
Sarah is an exceptionally good rep
By Mr Reid on 19/08/2016
We really enjoyed our holiday. The arrangements were efficient, the hotel was comfortable if somewhat dated (it's years since I've seen one of those beige hairdriers attached to the bathroom wall in a hotel). The food was good on the whole, though with limited choice as is usual for this type of hotel in Austria not everything is going to suit everyone.
The area is great for all levels of activity and the option of returning on the boat after a walk or cycle was great for us with our 7 year old. We have been to the area before so knew it would be suitable for us even if we didn't want to opt for some of the suggested things on the itinerary.
By Dr Monte on 19/08/2016
We had a wonderful mixed activity holiday cycling and canoeing down the Dordogne knowing we had excellent food and drink to look forward to after a hard days work. Pure bliss !!
By Ms Heard on 19/08/2016
Of the seven cycling holidays we have done with Headwater this was by far the most scenic and varied. Very enjoyable cycling along the excellent cycle paths. Meeting other cyclists and having plenty of good picnic spots and/or small refreshment opportunities on route was delightful. An extra day in Merano was well worth it. We spent the day going up in the cable car to Merano 2000 for a walk on the mountains before a delicious lunch in an Alpine restaurant. We thought the grading of 2 bikes was a bit high compared to previous Headwater holidays and, apart from a couple of hills, was fairly easy cycling. This, of course, maybe that on cycle paths one doesn't have to content with traffic therefore it appears easier. One word of caution. Taking ones bike on the train to Trento was an ordeal. Lifting bikes on and off Italian trains requires super human strength, not to mention trying to negotiate getting two bikes into the lifts to access the appropriate platform! As two over 60 year old ladies this was not a plesant experience. Our final highlight of the holiday was the extra two nights in Verona and seeing Aida at the Arena di Verona - superb and well worth it.
Overall this was an excellent holiday and if it was not for the train journey one we would repeat.
By Mr Peacock on 19/08/2016
The 'multi-choice' approach to answering disguises the variable nature of the accommodation and cuisine. The route notes (for cycling) were written in almost narrative style and A4 landscape which may be appropriate and helpful to walkers but were cumbersome and awkward to follow for cyclists. Some defences were clearly lifted from walking notes e.g. references to maps not available to cyclists.
By Mr Lowe on 19/08/2016
The local team gave us really useful practical tips and were very friendly
The holiday exceeded our expectations in terms of pure enjoyment, accuracy of walking routes and notes and we particularly appreciated the views, suggested stops for refreshments and quality of the hotels we stayed in
By Mr Guthrie on 19/08/2016
Headwaters choice of hotels / restaurants resulted in us having some superb meals.
By Mrs Hart on 19/08/2016
Landhaus Feldmeier exceeded expectations- an excellent room with plenty of seating and a balcony. Veggie food better than expected. Excellent and varied walking with options increased by good local public transport (rail and bus). A longish and not especially pleasant taxi ride to/ from Munich (no criticism of drivers).
Hotel Opera was rather odd. Service was excellent - there seemed to be almost as many staff as guests. However, the room was rather weird and a bit shabby/ dirty (e.g. stained bright mustard carpet and grubby bed trim) and I found the hotel a bit pretentious. The location was excellent though with easy access to the city centre and the English Gardens.
By Ms Kidney on 17/08/2016
A wonderfully well planned holiday in the most beautiful surroundings with quality accommodation.
By Mr Metcalf on 17/08/2016
The family activity holiday was ideal for a family of mixed ability. The cycling to Bad Ischi , Saint Wolfgang and Saint Gilgen was suitable for everyone. All the places we visited had a wide selection of coffee shops, bars and restaurants. We also did a number of walks from the hotel. The most rewarding was the 20 minute ascent of the Thersienstein which gave excellent views of Wolfgangsee. A more adventurous walk was the Brustwand Aussichtsweg, although the highlight was probably a beer at the Kleefeld on the way back to the hotel with views up the Postalm valley. We used the hotels swimming pool everyday and on the hotter days you could walk out into the garden to a selection of sun beds. The hotels facilities were excellent. We had a bedroom with a mezzanine which gave 3 sleeping areas. The public areas were very spacious and clean. The food was a modern interpretation of Austrian cuisine that was very well cooked and presentated. However if you thought it a little adventurous they would give alternatives like Wiener schnitzel and chips . Overall the holiday is highly recommended.
By Mr Wallace on 17/08/2016
I had a fantastic week on the Austrian Lakes Adventure. Colin and Jill were very welcoming and happy to help at any stage of the holiday. The family run Hotel was also brilliant! Rather than a standard room which I was expecting, I had my very own suite including window seating and table, sofa, en-suite, balcony and ample storage. Their buffet breakfast and 5 course evening menus were always first class too. I really could not complain! As for the hiking and cycling, there were numerous notes provided which gave flexibility and choice dependent on the level of ability I was looking for. This was a great way to visit the local area and integrate with local culture. I also incorporated a day trip to Salzburg by bus. Unlike the UK, this was very easy to organise, and stress free! This was a beautiful area to visit and will highly recommend to my friends and family. Thank you all.
By Mrs Monk on 17/08/2016
A well structured, walking holiday on the Brittany coastline .
By Mrs Davidson on 17/08/2016
An ideal combination of mild peril, moderate exercise and gluttony, in lovely and interesting surroundings.
By Mrs Took on 17/08/2016
This was a very enjoyable holiday exceeding my expectations. The walks and walking notes were great, the included meals were extremely good and the Headwater contacts, James and Hazel were excellent - very friendly and helpful. I loved having a day off between the walks to explore the area surrounding our hotels or to simply relax by the pool.
By Mrs Moss on 17/08/2016
We have just returned from an excellent 10 days in France, having never been to this area before, we now are keen to return! The walking and cycling was definitely 2 boot, but worth the climbs. And we really enjoyed the relaxed canoeing down The Dordogne. All hotels were excellent with fabulous food. Sarlet is very pretty and well worth the extra night, although it is a long climb up back to the hotel from the town.
By Ms Pilgrim on 17/08/2016
We felt the weather played an important part in the conditions we experienced which made the walks more challenging. It is a beautiful area and the second half of the holiday was particularly beautiful and quite isolated. This holiday offers a mixed experience of history, nature and good food and wine. Any problems we encountered were minor and I felt that St Francis must have been a tough guy with his Forbes and sandals!
By Mr Benner on 17/08/2016
the provision of laundry local laundry services would be much appreciated.
By Mrs Provan on 17/08/2016
A beautiful area to visit
By Mrs Myles on 17/08/2016
A great experience!
By Mr Nichols on 17/08/2016
The cycle paths in August were very busy. Much of the cycle is alongside main roads and railways so can be noisy. Some fantastic scenery but many kilometres of orchards and vineyards to cycle through. Most of the route is downhill or flat; if you are a cyclist you may miss the challenge of a few hills. Great hotels, good locations.
By Mrs Fleming on 17/08/2016
Thoroughly enjoyed the holiday. Quite sad when it finished. Could easily have kept going
The routes were lovely, mostly on cycle tracks which was great and well planned mileages.
Especially enjoyed Slovenia. Would like to go back.
Hotels generally of a very good standard although next time we would make requests eg. for a quiet room or room with good outlook
By Mrs Cornish on 17/08/2016
Gentle cycling through beautiful countryside - with stunning chateaux to visit - fabulous fragrances in the air - luxurious accommodation and wonderful food and wine. At the end we were fitter - but possibly fatter too!
By Mrs Malone on 17/08/2016
We cycled 5 out of 7 days. Joanna met us on arrival and got us on track. The trails were very easy to manage - the GPS was a superb tool. The scenery was magnificent, and we really saw the hidden Portugal. The cycle lanes were completely segregated from the roads and this made for a relaxed and peaceful experience. Each evening we arrived at our hotel to a warm welcome and our luggage in our room. The standard of all the hotels was extremely high and they were all in beautiful locations. The printed maps and route descriptions were also helpful, and the level of difficulty ultimate ascribed to the cycle was accurate.
By Mrs Hoskins on 17/08/2016
An unforgettable experience travelling in rural Portugal, getting to see sights other holidays don't offer, off the beaten track, just the right amount of effort for cycling. Excellent choice of hotels, although not the best views! Very good help from rep and good support offered. Nice to know the baggage was taken care of although we arrived before it at one location and it was 5.30pm before they arrived! We could cycle the route at our own pace and felt secure in the knowledge that we were being taken care of and knew where we were going with very good instructions and maps.
By Dr Paget on 17/08/2016
High Alps walking tour is strenuous but rewarding. Certainly challenging in places. Well worth experiencing.
By Mrs Holland-webb on 17/08/2016
We loved the Leutasch valley as the walks took us through meadows full of flowers with only the sound of bees, birds and cowbells. There was often at least one gasthof where we could sit with a beer and enjoy spectacular mountain views. The accommodation and food was very good and the hotel staff were very welcoming. The local bus, which stopped right outside the hotel, was always on time and we used it alot. We would recommend this holiday to anyone whether they just like to amble or whether they like to scale the heights.
By Mr Dudley on 17/08/2016
Generally, very enjoyable - superb part of the world to explore; ideal time of year (our trip was not peak season); great to burn some calories during the day, then enjoy some fine food and drink in the evening; good mix of like-minded people.
By Mrs McDonough on 16/08/2016
Well organised and great routes. Accommodation usually gives more of a local flavour than big anonymous chains.
By Mr Ball on 16/08/2016
Very good experience despite the travel arrangement errors.
By Mrs Evans on 16/08/2016
Fantastic service from Steve and great routes to cycle. The Manoir des Portes served the most wonderful food. Both the Manoir and the Hotel Printania were full of character and gave wonderful service. Thank you!
By Mr Hutchison on 16/08/2016
I can't imagine any other type of holiday that is so satisfying in terms of exercise combined with relaxation, visiting new places, and truly excellent food & drink.
By Ms Schoenfeld on 16/08/2016
Our trip we booked through Headwaters for a stay in Kandersteg, Switzerland at the Alfa Soleil was the highlight of a few weeks spent in Europe. The hotel was wonderful, and the hiking suggestions from Headwaters were great and provided us with all the information we needed to do some great hiking on our own. They scheduled our train trips and everything worked just as planned. It was great to have a home-base from which to do a lot of different hikes in the area. We were very pleased with our whole experience!
By Mrs Eagle on 16/08/2016
Cycling the Istrian coast was such a wonderful holiday for myself and my husband. The sea was gorgeous, some of the routes were a bit bumpy and confusing but each location was so beautiful it was incredible. Food was great in the first two hotels and such stunning locations. We would definitely recommend to a friend and think about going on another holiday with headwater.
By Mrs Clark on 16/08/2016
The booking process was simple and supportive. The holiday exceeded expectation; not something I have said before. The accommodation was superb, food wonderful, welcome huge and help available when required.
By Mrs Ainscough on 16/08/2016
Great cycling location with generally very quiet roads, beautiful countryside and pretty villages perched on hilltops - definitely a great way to explore the region - you can smell the lavender fields and really enjoy the countryside. Both Keith and Claire were excellent reps - really friendly, helpful and flexible in every way. The food at Dame L'Oie in Perne la Fontaine was superb as was the food at Hotel de Sable. Quality of the bikes was very good. The itinerary for the rest day at Maubec was a little underwhelming as we felt the villages weren't that picturesque with few options for coffee/stop-offs and only managed to get lunch at the last stop in Robion. We would have preferred to go back to Lacoste and Menerbes which we had whizzed through the day before.
By Mrs Honeywood on 16/08/2016
Our first experience with Headwater and chosen with our teenage daughter in mind as well as our enjoyment of cycling. Wonderful views and an interesting area to cycle in. The cycling was mainly all on tarmaced paths with only a couple of slight climbs. We enjoyed the variety of scenery and places to stop off at. We tended to make our own picnics as there were such lovely places to stop, but there are numerous cafes for drinks and food. We found the time spent in Merano a little long, but walked up to Dorf Tirol and spent the afternoon at the local swimming pool with the most stunning views - possibly the coldest pool I have swum in! We enjoyed the opportunity for stops en route , particularly having time to visit the modern art gallery in Rivereto. All in all a very enjoyable holiday and we hope to do another one next year.
By Ms Young on 16/08/2016
The area is beautiful with many castles to visit and easy to cycle. Food is gourmet & delicious, many restaurants and cafes on route. Plenty of history. Weather is great. Though problems I mentioned need to be dealt with.
By Mrs Maddison on 16/08/2016
we were disappointed, Some of the walking was below expectations, there seemed to be a lack of continuity and some of the food left much to be desired. The catalogue entry was a bit ambiguous.
By Mr Lewis on 16/08/2016
For us in our seventies, this three boot walk presented a serious challenge, especially as the weather was unsettled and thundery. Hence the fact that we did indeed complete the basic circular walk without using local transport (except for a few ski-lifts), and without mishap, was a matter of great satisfaction to us. When the clouds cleared, the views were magnificent, and when they didn't clear, the views were still pretty good. The hotels and their locations were nearly all ideal places to recover between assaults on the sensational hills. This is definitely one for the serious walker who is in practice. However, should the body or spirit fail (and ours did not), there are more options for ducking out than we had been led to believe; plenty of local buses, for example.
By Mrs Walker on 16/08/2016
The scenery was quite spectacular. The footpaths were quiet and on most days we did not see a sole whilst walking. I was disappointed not to see more villages, We did walk from Marradi but the start of the walk was on the outskirts so we were unable to have a walk around the town. Our guild did arrange for us to visit Ravenna on the Wednesday by bus and train, we enjoyed the visit and were happy to have a break from the walks for a day. The hotel was good, our bedroom had just been decorated and refurbished. Ercole and Roberta were very friendly and went out of their way for us. Ercole invited me into the kitchen to watch him and his chef cook, which was a lovely extra touch. James the Guide lived close to the hotel so we saw him everyday.
By Dr Scally on 16/08/2016
The walking was varied and interesting. The stretch along the river d'Elsa on the way to Colle di Val d'Elsa was the most interesting. Some of the hotels are quite busy with tour groups. The hotels also vary markedly. Hotel Terre di Casole was easily the best, particularly for service. One minot point however was that the room we were allocated the room (204), despite plenty of empty rooms alongside it that were a bit bigger. The reception staff and the main waitress in the restaurant were fantastic and we particularly appreciated that there were plenty of special options offered to us in the restaurant that were not on the menu but were suitable for vegetarians. The poorest hotel was Relais della Rovere. Reception staff were uninterested and the restaurant (not run by the hotel) was poor for vegetarians. The pool at Relais Santa Chiara was hopeless for swimming. San Gimignano was very touristic and not very pleasant. On the other hand, Volterra was very interesting and worth more time that it was allocated as a start/finish point.
By Mr Robson on 16/08/2016
Superb holiday that we thoroughly enjoyed! It rained quite a bit - but don't let that put you off. The scenery is marvellous; out of this world in some places - especially the Dolomites with their marvellously jagged mountains and stunning turquoise lakes. The Drei Zimmen/Tre Cime trail is magnificent and certainly worth saving to last! The hotel accommodation was truly superb with a leisurely 5-course meal routinely included. Too good for us, I have to say! Not many British families in this area. Keep it quiet... do they know what they are missing?
By Mr Wark on 16/08/2016
Dobbiaco was a super location as a base for walking. The walks were well detailed and accurate and the views during the walks were quite stunning.
By Mr Furness on 08/08/2016
This was our first self guided cycling holiday and it lived up to our expectations . From the office to Brian and Olivia , the service was excellent,professional and personable. The quality of hotels was of a very good standard with superb food and locations. The routes were were diverse, interesting, well supported with comprehensive notes and gave us the feeling that we had really seen and experienced the region. Brian and Olivia were hugely supportive , caring and very personable . We felt that we were not alone on our first cycling trip and they were a phone call away if needed. We really enjoyed our holiday and looking to another one next year in another European country. Mark and Philippa Furness.
By Mr Turner on 08/08/2016
A really good walk across the Loire Valley. Highly recommended
By Mr Clare on 08/08/2016
Some superb chateaux to visit along the route. Gentle walking. Beware of biting insects.
By Mr Farrell on 08/08/2016
This was my 3rd holiday with you -- but the first in over a decade. I preferred the way you used to do this with local operatives who would meet us each morning to update us on the route, check the bikes, etc. The problem with the current system is that we were left a bit too much to our own devices. There were a few too many occasions when we encountered routes that were patently out of date or detours that would have bene picked up if there were someone checking the route more regularly, And in one instance we were left to fend for ourselves in finding our hotel, which resulted is us cycling down a very dangerous hill heavy with traffic desperately looking for ANY kind of sign before a thunder storm hit. That was not a moment I'd like to repeat!
By Mr Merryweather on 08/08/2016
Leisurely cycling tour through beautiful and quiet countryside with leisurely breaks at excellent hotels, providing sufficient time to visit chateaux and gardens along the way.
By Mr Mellish on 04/08/2016
We loved Croatia and in particular the Adriatic riviera which was stunningly beautiful and relatively unspoiled. All the hotels were good and in excellent locations and Romina the rep was fantastic - extremely helpful, friendly and accommodating. The walking was more challenging than we have experienced on other Headwater holidays and not quite as interesting or inspiring. It was very hot walking in July and there were lots of mosquitos - it would probably be a better choice in May or September. We will definitely return to Croatia to explore this beautiful country further.
By Mrs Bailey on 04/08/2016
A lovely week of gentle rides on quiet roads through beautiful countryside. At the end of the day we could look forward to a few hours relaxing by the pool at the wonderful agriturismo L'Albara, before a truly magnificent evening meal. We loved every minute.
By Mrs Woodhead on 04/08/2016
Very well designed walking programme, with good notes and maps. All arrangements ran smoothly. Lovely country with friendly welcomes from all. Clean and well maintained paths. Beautiful flowers in the meadows even in late July. Very impressed that M Tours boss took the trouble to meet us and discuss our walking experiences. A memorable holiday, with an evening wedding in traditional costume at Bohinj, on our last night there,
By Mr McMahon on 01/08/2016
A very simple booking process. Quickly confirmed. Our times for crossing via tunnel/rail were good. An excellent local guide/rep. Hotels were of a good standard, food arrangements were excellent.
By Mrs Caves on 29/07/2016
Some long ascents made for tough walking in parts but with the reward of good views. The spring flowers were wonderful. The stay at Motovun was enjoyable and the last 2 nights in Opatija a delight - pity there wasn't an opportunity to stay longer here since there was a lot to do and some great restaurants. We found Buzet disappointing. Romina (the local rep) was very efficient.
By Mr Pearce on 25/07/2016
A marvellous combination of: exercise and relaxation in wonderful locations, staying in top hotels with everything superbly organised.
By Mr Clarke on 25/07/2016
Careful consideration of grading and your own physical ability. Whilst every care is taken - cycling can be strenuous. Using electric bikes solves everything! ( But less exercise- but great for hills and admiring the country side! Using e-bikes helps multi generational inclusion and would enable less strong cyclists to participate easily on harder routes.
By Mrs Lithgow on 25/07/2016
This was an ideal holiday for our family with three teenagers. The canoeing wasn't too demanding but was fun, and the 'rest' days could be as active as we liked. The Dordogne is a wonderful part of France, fantastically beautiful, and with superb cuisine. All the hotels provided fantastic meals and really good, friendly service. The kids had a triple room in three of the five hotels and these were well-sized, proper triple or family rooms so they had plenty of space.
I would normally put our family holiday together myself but it was wonderful being able to leave all the organisation up to someone else, knowing that all the pieces would fit together. They did our flights (from Scotland) - with dates that didn't match the canoeing holiday - and also car hire for those extra days at a very reasonable rate.
Just be aware that you will have extra costs when you are there. You will, of course, have to pay for drinks with your (half board) evening meal, and these prices varied quite a bit between the hotels, and the picnic lunches provided by the hotels varied between 7 and 10 Euros per person. We could add tips to our card payments at all but one of the hotels.
By Mrs Love-fordham on 25/07/2016
Great for a relaxing experience of every day France. Our sixth Headwater vacation in six years! The food was fantastic - even though two of us are vegetarians - every restaurant was really outstanding! The hotels have a lot of character - with the exception of Normandie, which was very good too just not as exciting. Sadly, the local train/bus issues make getting places less carefree - especially on stay-put days. Our rep, Stephen, did the best he could of making up for the trains/buses. Enjoyed meeting the local French people a lot -- they were very friendly. This hike is good for meeting the locals. The country side and villages were beautiful. We did two walking excursions not on the trip notes that were outstanding: The first made the hike 2 hours longer, but we hiked to the Notre Dame D'Orient at the top of a hill in Semizelles - this was a highlight of the day!! The regional notes have this suggestion. Absolutely worth the climb! The other was to an organic brewery just outside of St. Pere (Near Vezelay) - also a highlight of the day! Try the white beer! The Grotto near Vermenton was a lot of fun! Vezeley was the highlight of the trip - do not miss morning 7:00 prayers in the basilica!!!! The singing of angels!! Can't wait to plan our next Headwater vacation!
By Mr Clayton on 25/07/2016
OK but accommodation, especially Auberge de la Chappelle, which was pretty poor, ordinary for the price and not representing good value.
Dear Mr Clayton,
Thank you for taking the time to provide your post-holiday feedback. Please be assured, we do review all of the feedback we receive to ensure we continue to improve and develop our holidays for the future.
With this in mind, we were sorry to read of your dissatisfaction with the Auberge da la Chappelle. You may be pleased to hear that we have made some changes to this holiday for the 2017 season, these include a revamp to some of the routes and we will no longer be using the Auberge da la Chappelle.
We are sure you will agree that these changes will continue to add to the overall enjoyment of this holiday.
We would like to thank you for your continued loyalty and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mr Druett on 25/07/2016
Exxcellent trip,superb reps,only complaint food at Les Pins - an uninspired menu for the demi pension. No choice,poor value
By Mrs Cartwright on 25/07/2016
Really good bikes.
As ti was very hot (end of June and 32 degrees ) we were pleased that the cycling was very easy.
By Mis Ward on 25/07/2016
If you want a mix of history, art and good food with cycling along flat routes then this holiday is for you. But be aware that there is no shade on the first day's cycling, so if the weather is hot it might be a bit of a struggle! Not the most interesting scenery, which is perhaps to be expected in this type of flat agricultural landscape. However, this is made up for by visits to Ravenna, Ferrara, Comacchio and Bologna - and some welcoming hotels.
By Mrs Shilton on 25/07/2016
It is worth it! Take up all the advice provided by your reps and live a little!
By Mr Pryor on 25/07/2016
They were happy to wait unitl 10,00 a.m. to collect our luggage in the mornings, which was great,as we were on holiday and didn't want to rush our
breakfast, before walking. All the hotels were well chosen. The holiday was well thought out. We took the wrong route at Durdle Door and ended up on
an extremely steep area, so listen carefully to the Rep's instructions. Our rep recommended restaurants for us and booked them, so we had a nice
meal at Rick Steins in Poole, and several other nice places, that we might have missed otherwise. Make sure you take a sun hat, as there is not
alot of shade on the walks. Expect to feel quite tired, unless you walk 8 miles on a regular basis.
By Mrs Hutchinson on 25/07/2016
The route notes from Kleine Scheidegg to Grindelwald need to be improved. Several instances where unclear, eg says continue downhill but there is a 3 road junction with all 3 roads going downhill, unclear what is road and what is drive, doesn't tell you which way to go to get to hotel relative to the gondola station when you turn off the main road in Grindelwald - road splits and no info as to whether L or R.
On arrival at Wilderswil by train, book says cross over the tracks to taxi, but arrived on the taxi side of the station so didn't have to cross tracks - a bit confusing.
A note in the booklet about having to fill out name/passport number/date on the rail tickets would be useful.
The pack lunch from Hotel Baeren was very poor.
By Mr Strauss on 25/07/2016
We can warmly recommend the Loire Gastronomic Cycling holiday which is particularly suitable for the reasonably fit and active over-65s. The hotels are excellent and all had swimming pools, the meals were really delicious and the cycling was not too strenuous. The countryside is stunning, as are the many chateaux along the route which are of special interest and add greatly to the enjoyment of the holiday.
By Mrs Southwell on 25/07/2016
Great holiday - easy cycling on quiet roads and cycle routes - delightful reps and first class hotels and food. A very successful Gastronomic holiday.
By Mrs Acheson on 25/07/2016
Overall we found the holiday a great break for us. The route, notes, hotel locations, things to do etc all added to the enjoyment. Everything was well explained and set out for us.
By Mrs Whiteley on 25/07/2016
Very well organised holiday - excellent helpful Portuguese reps looked after us well throughout. GPS was a very successful means of not getting lost en route. Hotels all good, although 2 out of 4 gave us rooms looking at blank walls. Some time is spent riding on roads, though we used footpaths where available, and there are dedicated cycle paths for the majority of the route. Some interesting coastal scenery. Riding through the lagoon wasn't as spectacular as we'd hoped as much of the the cycle path was rocky and potholed and you had to concentrate on the path surface immediately ahead to avoid falling, rather than enjoying the scenery and wildlife. All in all though, a very enjoyable holiday.
By Mrs Osler on 25/07/2016
Slovenia, even in high summer season, was relatively peaceful with fewer tourists than in other parts of the Alps. There were wonderful views on all the walks. There was a bit too much road walking on some days.
By Mrs Hills on 25/07/2016
Brilliant holiday, fantastic views and flower meadows. Luggage transfers etc went smoothly and our hosts were welcoming especially at Les Sapins and hotel Renard. The walk is definitely tough especially if doing extensions and rest day walks, I found walking poles essential my husband managed without! Route descriptions re ridges for those worried about heights were accurate. Mont de Grange was very steep but worth the effort we were fortunate in having great weather for this day but still needed a fleece at the summit due to snow field. The food was generally good, we opted to buy our own lunch at the local bakers and grocers shops which worked well - note the supermarket described in our notes in Chapelle d'Abondance closed in March we couldn't find another but bought an excellent quiche at the boulangerie, and fruit from grocers just past the tourist info office. The Chalets du Mouet on the walk from Chatel to Chapelle d'Abondance was charming they do a lovely salad. Also the mountain refuge at Ubine is ideally placed for a stop, the food looked great, we took shelter and advantage of a hot chocolate which was very welcome on a wet and chilly day. We would recommend this holiday if you're fit but be aware that the temperatures vary considerably, we started at 28c and had 3 days at 9c! Being non skiers it was great to witness the alpine scenery.
By Mr Twiss on 25/07/2016
Well planned and organised, good routes accurately described, very helpful staff.
By Mrs Elston on 22/07/2016
A very enjoyable break - excellent support from the Headwater rep, fabulous walking supported by excellent notes and lovely hotels in beautiful countryside to recover and recuperate in - who could ask for more?
By Mrs Leonard on 22/07/2016
We have two teenage sons and this was the perfect family holiday for everyone. Combining the activity of cycling and rest days at beautiful hotels and locations, taking in the wonderful medieval villages of Catalunya, farm lands, bays and beeches. It was the perfect way to explore more of the region.
By Mr Allin on 22/07/2016
Excellent holiday. The bikes were quite heavy but the cycling was flat and the electric bike was modern and excellent.
By Mrs Smith on 22/07/2016
The scenery in the Alps is stunning especially when the flowers are in bloom but the walking is quite strenuous so you need to be reasonably fit and well equipped.
By Mr Wallis on 21/07/2016
Hotel in a beautiful location, welcoming and friendly staff, superb food and an excellent area for walking.A week was much too short!
By Ms Culshaw on 21/07/2016
An excellent holiday. The small group size meant it felt very much like a private guided holiday but with the advantage of company.
By Mr Smith on 20/07/2016
Stunning countryside and food. Best reps we've ever had.
By Dr Young on 20/07/2016
This is a beautiful part of the world. some of the nicest scenery we have cycled through. I think possibly the nicest hotels and food [apart from 2 nights see below] we have enjoyed. BUT it is hard!! There is more climbing on this route than we have experienced before on other 2 bike routes. I think this does need flagged up. The 2 women in their mid 60s found the going very tough on the first day - over 900metres of climbing. BUT our excellent reps jumped to the rescue and produced e- bikes for the 2 elderly ladies! What a transformation - we could enjoy the rides- the views- and our husbands did not have the worry about us! Highly to be recommended on [in our opinion]this 3 bike holiday.On 2 nights we had to travel to a restaurant . this meant we had the same menu 2 nights running -for a non meat eater- the fish was poor. It was not a great ambience. We did speak to the reps about it. the food elsewhere was largely extraordinary and the hotels that only did breakfasts gave excellent breakfasts.
We did not find your new map system helpful. the route notes mentioned names of places that were not on your new maps. Thankfully our reps provided proper maps at our request.
By Mr File on 19/07/2016
This area of Brittany is excellent for cycling with lots of off road cycling to interesting towns with lovely views. The long time Headwater rep here goes out of his way to provide support. He is the best rep we have had after over a dozen Headwater holidays.
By Mr Boyd on 19/07/2016
The holiday provided us with an opportunity to visit and explore an interesting part of England which was unknown to us and the walks were varied with some spectacular scenery. Apart from the walking itinerary itself, there were lots of places and sites to visit, including Portland Bill, Brownsea Island, Corfe Castle, the Swanage Railway, and by way of expedition from Weymouth, both of Thomas Hardy's houses near Dorchester. As usual with Headwater the accommodation was comfortable and thoughtfully chosen.
By Mis Rodgers on 19/07/2016
Maderia was a beautiful location. Weather in June was pleasant. Hotels and food good.
Walks varied and interesting. Overall a good experience.
By Mrs Long on 15/07/2016
E bikes were excellent although son enjoyed physical demands of ordinary bike. Need to see them on more routes and more routes on an easy grading. Hotels can be a bit variable, all had their plus points but especially French Hotels can be a bit shabby. Need detailed larger scale maps are necessary to support the route notes which can be confusing. Food generally very good. The e bikes need to be able to manage demands of terrain and the needs of the riders.
By Mrs High on 15/07/2016
A much enjoyed and excellent holiday giving us the opportunity to see some spectacular scenery. we did appreciate the days restbetween each walk as the walks were fairly demanding and the miles covered were probably to our limit.
By Ms Gordon on 15/07/2016
Stephen is a great asset to Headwater, he is outgoing, helpful and informative.Thank you again to the online staff of Headwater for a glorious 9 days!
By Mrs Lynn on 15/07/2016
Good food, good walking and good organization.
By Mrs Steen on 15/07/2016
An excellent walking holiday with a well chosen itinerary and beautiful scenery. Standards of food and accommodation were very high. We all had a great time.
By Mrs Cant on 15/07/2016
all in all - good trip, excellent gear - too much food!
By Mr Crooks on 15/07/2016
Wonderful relaxing holiday
By Mr Cleugh on 15/07/2016
This was our first trip with Headwater (recommended by our New Zealand travel agent) and we are very pleased with our choice and will definitely look at another cycling trip in the future- most likely in France. We were particularly impressed with by the friendliness of all the hotel staff we encountered - and their helpfulness!!
By Mrs Triger on 15/07/2016
We had two varied weeks in France, interspersed with the 8 day walking holiday. I think we have come to the conclusion that staying based in one hotel (i.e. Kandersteg) is probably better for us than walking from hotel to hotel. We missed having a car on our 'rest' days in order to explore the surroundings. We also found 23kms rather too much for us! We got lost a couple of times following the instructions - better signposting in Switzerland! However, the food, wine and the beautiful countryside was much appreciated. Not often one walks only hearing birdsong and nothing else!
Thanks Headwater for all your arrangements.
By Mr Goodfellow on 15/07/2016
Very nice holiday in nice locations, with excellent local guide, only spoilt by extremely poor accommodation at Hotel Conte in Perast and extreme tiredness on first day due to ridiculously early flight time from Gatwick.
Dear Mr Goodfellow,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire. We were pleased to see you enjoyed your holiday overall and rated our local guide as excellent, we will ensure your praise is passed on.
We were however sorry to read you felt the room allocated to you at Hotel Conte was extremely poor; this was disappointing to read; especially since past customers have rated this hotel highly. However, in light of your feedback, we will continue to monitor this hotel and work closely with the Hotelier to ensure our customers receive the standard of accommodation they have come to expect on a Headwater holiday.
We were also sorry to hear you felt extremely tired due to the early flight from Gatwick. In order to alleviate this, we do offer extra nights in Dubrovnik before the start of the holiday, which can help break up the travel a little. We are sorry if you were not aware of this option.
In closing, we would like to thank you for your continued loyalty and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mrs Garth on 15/07/2016
Thoroughly enjoyed my holiday on my first visit to Portugal. Excellent service from local reps. Great hotels. Ebikes fun. Delicious food, wine and port. Loved the routes.
By Mis Aplin on 15/07/2016
This is a lovely cycling holiday but quite challenging with regard to the hills especially when its 34C! An early start is recommended to avoid the hottest part of the day. The hotels are all good and food at the Della Rovere is excellent. Nice pools at all the hotels. Plenty to do on the off days. The walled town of Monteriggioni is a relatively easy cycle from the Della Rovere. Worth booking an extra night at the end of the holiday in Volterra. Beautiful town with lots of little shops, cafes and alleyways. Thanks to Luke and Eleanor who were excellent reps.
By Mr Parker on 15/07/2016
Tough walk but very stimulating
By Mr Tarr on 15/07/2016
This was our first cycling holiday, we are both reasonably fit but not regular cyclists so this was an excellent introduction.we found the routes fairly straight forward and enjoyable with the route notes easy to follow as long as we didn't read too far ahead (short term memory problems!). All the hotels were very good in their different ways , we ate well everywhere but the stand out food was at the Villa Lussana in Teolo. unfortunately we missed the ride to Teolo because of an extremely heavy thunder storm but Sarah our Rep picked us up and transfered us. The day wasn't wasted though, we were able to do a lovely circular walk later on in the afternoon to set us up for the first of our fabulous evening meals there. We took a bus into Padua on the rest day, well worth doing, we visited the Scrovegni Chapel and the the University to see the anatomy theatre. The two nights at the Agritourismo L' Albara were very convivial and the pool was lovely. To sum up, we had a great time, Sarah our rep was extremely helpful and helped make our holiday .
By Mrs Walker on 15/07/2016
Headwater take all the uncertainty out of your holiday: you know the hotels are going to be excellent in every respect, you know you are going to get picked up at the right time, you know the walks are going to be through beautiful countryside. Everything runs smoothly and efficiently. We find the balance between a walking day and a rest day just perfect. This was our eighth holiday with Headwater and we are already talking about next year's.
By Mr Clugston on 15/07/2016
We (3, 60 something adults) had a good walking holiday in the Oberammagau area. The walks were varied, well graded and easy to modify as one cared to, and dependent on weather. Also plenty of other places to visit and experience. For eg, we chose one day to go to Zugspitz using the local bus, cog train and cable car and then walk around the Eibsee, about 7km, with spectacular views. An excellent add on. Accommodation at Landhaus Feldmeier was ok. We had upgraded to a deluxe room out the back which was great. Food generally good, certainly plenty of it, but we would have liked side vegetables/salad with the main courses. Some confusion in arrangements: no car to pick us up from Munich airport, and no record at hotel of our upgrading to comfort room: both issues sorted very promptly by Headwater / manager. Gift bottle of good red appreciated. Highest level of excitement was on our way to Oberammagau: 160km/hr in our replacement taxi, a Toyota Prius, with driver fiddling with his phone Sat Nav.
By Mr Bridge on 15/07/2016
Austria is a lovely country and the people are friendly. We had a great time and enjoyed the walks. My advice to you and my only difficulty was because we choose Stansted it meant getting up at 3.am. This was ok but the problem was that when we got to our first hotel we were too tired to take in all the information that Colin and Jill gave us. Its not a complaint of them but if we could of had that information on day two after a good nights sleep it would of been better.
By Mr Forward on 15/07/2016
we appreciate all the information and support provided and i look forward to travelling with headwater again.
By Mrs Titley on 15/07/2016
The guided Puglia walking holiday was fabulous. We had heard about Matera before out travels and we had time to explore the town and surroundings.It was an amazing place.Luigina, our leader on this holiday, was very knowledgeable and helpful. The 3 centres and scenery on the walk were quite varied. The free day was a good idea as it gave us the opportunity to visit Lecce.The holiday was a fascinating mix of history, geoography, culture and of course, food!
By Mr Fairweather on 15/07/2016
Wonderful high level walking with dramatic views and an amazing variety of wild flowers during the day, and a very comfortable hotel with superb food in the evening.
By Mr Moyes on 13/07/2016
If you want a very fine single-centre walking holiday in stunning mountain scenery then Headwater's Dolomites experience in the Southern Tyrol is perfect: varied, stimulating, hard work and very satisfying. As well as the glory of the mountains, the flower-strewn alpine pastures are a botanist's heaven.
By Mis Riley on 07/07/2016
Despite one of us not being able to walk very far we still had a lovely time. The hotel was in a lovely place and was a most relaxing place to stay.
By Mrs Chapman on 06/07/2016
A very well considered walking route with accurate and detailed route notes which helped to make the holiday very enjoyable. We opted to stay an extra night in one of the suggested hotels which worked out very well. We liked the independence and choice of pace the holiday presented even though we had the full back up of Headwater representatives there if we had needed them. The rating of 1 boot + for the Catalan Classic tour was appropriate as was the 'at a glance' write up in the brochure. Overall this walk/holiday fulfilled our expectations and introduced us to a lovely part of Spain.
By Ms Moore on 06/07/2016
Wonderful holiday - excellent hotel in an amazing varied area for walking with stunning views round every corner. The buses and lifts - free with the complementary pass - make the high level walks (and/ or restaurants) so accessible. One of our best holidays ever and we will be back!
By Mrs Hayward on 06/07/2016
The Classic Swiss Alps walking holiday was a wonderful blend of a comfortable and welcoming hotel and varied walking. As a single centre holiday it was good to be able to access amazing scenery very easily and close to the hotel. The walks could all be tailored to suit ability, weather and level of energy by extending or shortening the suggested itineraries. The map was a great help in addition to the written descriptions. We were there at the end of June just before the hay cut in the village fields so saw the myriad meadow flowers before they were harvested, a process that was also very interesting to watch. The higher alpine meadows were the best we have ever seen anywhere and the waterfalls were impressive, fed by the melting snow. Kandersteg, where the holiday is based, is well served by trains and this was our method of transport all the way from England.
By Mr Whitton on 06/07/2016
Generally an excellent service but based on past experience will only go for future holidays with you where a Headwater rep is involved rather than an agent
By Mr Brooks on 06/07/2016
Bikes excellent. Lunches en route excellent. Accommodation a bit mixed.
By Mr Harrison on 06/07/2016
We had a fantastic time in Catalunya. The route and scenery were magnificent. The areas that you took us to were away from the regular tourist routes.We were able to absorb the culture and enjoy being with the local people.
By Mr Cooper on 06/07/2016
A lovely green area, with super footpaths and great views within natural unspoilt countryside
By Mrs Cross on 06/07/2016
Helpful Headwater staff who made planning and booking our holiday easy. Oberammergau is a wonderful location, Hotel Feldmeier was excellent with friendly, helpful staff. As well as the fantastic scenery and walks there is plenty to see and do in the town. Free bus pass made it easy to get to nearby towns. Also good rail connections from the local station.
By Mr Foster on 06/07/2016
The walk notes were very good, although some local information with them would have improved the experience. There was 1 mistake we found for the Strudelkopf walk where after leaving the Hotel Hohe Gaisl you reach a stream '...after just 350m' should read '...after just 35m'. This caused confusion as the official path has been diverted - correct per the notes (but the old one/route being shown on the map) and the old one/junction is 350m from this point!!
By Mr Ridyard on 02/07/2016
Excellent organisation and support, fantastic accommodation and food, very enjoyable cycle routes
By Mrs Chester on 02/07/2016
Cycling through wonderful rural landscapes; visiting beautiful hilltop villages
By Mrs Hewitt on 02/07/2016
This holiday was good and the temperature for walking was very comfortable, but it would have been lovely to see the sun more, and the spectacular views, which were sometimes covered by mist and low cloud. I was not very fit at the beginning and felt exhausted and sore after two days, so chose to miss the walk on day 3 and go with the bags to the next hotel and have a day resting, and reading by the pool. (The Porto Bay Serra Golf has a spa with treatments, and it is possible to book a leg and foot massage!). The walks were dominated by levada routes, so less varied than our previous walking holidays with Headwater, so it was really worth going on the San Lourentco peninsula walk which was wonderful
By Mrs Thomas on 02/07/2016
Loved this little known area, which was perfect for easy cycling. Good variety of cycling ; quiet roads, alongside canals and dedicated cycle paths. Sarah our rep couldn't have been better and was always working hard for us to get the most out of our holiday. Loved Albara, which had a pool which was a bonus in our hot weather (30s). There is another holiday option to stay here as a base for week, I would think this would work well , as it was our favourite stopover out of the four we stayed at. Food and wine excellent all the way round and plenty of places to stop enroute.
By Mrs Coulson on 01/07/2016
This is one of the best walking holidays we have had with Headwater. Excellent walking notes guided us through a lovely and varied landscape. And the accommodation in all three hotels was of the highest standard; perfect locations too.
By Mis Lee on 01/07/2016
An excellent holiday. Lovely sunshine and masses of flowers in the meadows made it especially beautiful. The walks were very varied and there were some interesting places to visit en route and on any non walking day(s). A very good centre.
By Mr Wilks on 30/06/2016
We had a wonderful time - excellent hotel, interesting food and superb walking. If you like wild flowers, it was a stunning to see the variety and colour on display. It is a reminder of what we have lost with our 'improved' grassland and factory farming. What was nice was that we could tailor each day's walk with the help of the hotel staff according to how strenuous a walk we felt like and what the weather was like in various parts of the area.
By Mr Maxwelljackson on 30/06/2016
A very enjoyable, easy (flat) cycle through a beautiful and interesting part of Italy. Apart from one 4-5 mile stretch on a busy road, all the rest of the cycling was on cycle tracks or quiet country roads. The accommodation/meals were varied and of a good standard, and our hosts were all friendly and welcoming. The route descriptions were very clear, accurate and easy to follow - so we didn't get lost!
By Mrs Colquhoun on 30/06/2016
This was not our best holiday with Headwater the weather in the Dordonge was just awful and we had to contend with a train strike none of which Headwater could have done anything about. We dried out on the last three days in Sete which was lovely. Electric bikes are wonderful
By Mr Pearson on 30/06/2016
Challenging walks lead to magnificent and interesting views within this small area of France . We were rewarded with the most beautiful array of spring flowers including several varieties of orchid. The excellent hotel , where English is widely spoken meant a lovely homecoming each evening.Wonderful gourmet menu etc completed our day! Thank you!
By Ms Roy on 30/06/2016
An enjoyable, varied and flexible holiday. It was possible to have long days or short days as you wished in a quiet and relaxed mountain area. Much less busy than the Alps but with beautiful scenery. We were given a very warm welcome wherever we went.
By Mr Willard on 30/06/2016
We had a fantastic holiday, The scenery, food and accomodation were great. Although we are both pretty fit my wife isn't such a keen cyclist but she really enjoyed this. The reps were really helpful when my wife wanted to swap to an E-bike towards the end when it got really hot, and now she wants to go again which I never thought would happen! I would really recommend this holiday and the E- bikes for those less enthusiastic about cycling
By Mrs Fairhall on 30/06/2016
If you enjoy being in the open air enjoying the country then this holiday is great with very comfortable rooms and great food and places to see, I would recommend this to anyone.
By Mrs Payne on 30/06/2016
We were surprised at how strenuous the cycling actually was! The distances were not long, and so we really expected to complete the routes much quicker than we did.Very big hills, but the bikes have good gears and we managed to cycle to the top of them all. The downs were brilliant. Roads were mainly very quiet.
The hotels were all lovely and we enjoyed having non cycling days to explore the interesting hill top towns.
Lots of great food and wine was had.
By Mrs Hughes on 30/06/2016
Great blend of good hotels and cycling with enough time for relaxation too. It was just what we needed for an active but relaxing holiday in a lovely part of Spain. Well organised and the rep was very helpful and really personalised the experience for us - for example by working with us to adjust the final days route including picking us up from the hotel and driving us to the start.
By Mrs Conaghan on 29/06/2016
This was a good mix of hiking and city . We enjoyed the beautiful Tuscan countryside and the guided tours of the wonderful cities of Florence and Sienna. The tour guide was helpful and completely knowledgeable. We also had a lot of fun!
By Dr Curry on 28/06/2016
well organised and helpful
By Mr Johnson on 28/06/2016
The holiday delivered everything we were hoping for and more. This was mainly due to the excellent tour leader, who went above and beyond the call of duty. As expected, she was very knowledgeable with regard to the actual locations and the walks, but she was also very helpful in her suggestions for places to eat, as not so many meals were included on this particular holiday. She is one of the best tour guides we have encountered and her sense of humour added to the enjoyment of the whole group.
By Mr Robb on 27/06/2016
We enjoyed the lovely Catalunya countryside and villages, the contrast of coastal and rural cycling was most enjoyable. Hotel Sa Punta was the best we've had with Headwater and the others were very good too, each quite different from the others. We did feel that there were too many inclines and rough tracks for this to be a 1 bike grade, maybe 1+ would be our classification. Having been on three other 1 bike holidays, this was more challenging.
By Mrs Bibby on 27/06/2016
The Catalan coastal walk is challenging in parts, particularly when the weather is hot, but it is spectacular and the route notes were great (with one or two exceptions, see below) The hotels were all quite different, each lovely in its own way and the restaurants that were pre-booked offered varied and interesting menus.I would thoroughly recommend the holiday.
Last year we walked in the Venito and we think the walks and accommodation in Catalonya are even better than those last year.
Thank you Headwater.
By Mr Dunn on 27/06/2016
An exciting and demanding adventure with the reward of wonderful food in beautiful surroundings.
By Mrs Ryan on 27/06/2016
This holiday delivered on great food, amazing scenery, friendly staff along the route and comfortable hotels. We thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience
By Mrs Gee on 27/06/2016
We knew from previous experience that the holiday itself would be great. This time we also experienced the highly professional, efficient and supportive nature of all the Headwater personnel in dealing with a string of unforeseen travel problems.
By Dr Sinclair on 22/06/2016
This is a beautiful part of the world, and the hotel and service were magnificent. Sadly we had terrible weather, with heavy rain each day, further snow on the peaks and biting cold wind. The paths up the mountains were often streams of water and fields little more than bogs. We had gone prepared for variable weather as it was mountainous, but not freezing cold and near constant rain. Teresa and her staff were very accommodating and the food was great. We did see a wild boar, mountain goats and fantastic birds and had a good rest
By Ms Escott on 17/06/2016
I am undecided as to booking with Headwater again, as there were some issues throughout the holiday which marred the experience. These were not things that Romina could have resolved as they were booking issues. I plan on submitting an email to Headwater shortly detailing these.
By Mr Cheek on 17/06/2016
We enjoyed our holiday however I must point out certain issues. The notes on page 3 of your Catalunya brochure are unclear - you have tried include notes for several holidays in one go using commas which results in it making little sense. In the first two lines you do not make it clear that you are talking about two different stations (Airport Terminus and Passeig de Garcia). I think you should investigate alternatives to having to wait at Passeig de Garcia station - it is busy, hot, no facilities, you are not allowed out of the station and we waited one and a half hours for the train. I think you should also give more information as to where to get off, it was luck we spotted the Viajuiga sign and managed to scramble off the train. Trail notes badly written and in parts not clear, there were two instances of them being totally wrong. Page 23 2nd para arriving at junction we could not understand which path to take so opted for the road route which says follow to Cala Joncois NO just the opposite is correct. Page 25 second column 3rd para on reaching T junction turn right NO turn left and at next T junction turn right. There are no road signs to help you.
By Mrs Rayden on 17/06/2016
We thoroughly enjoyed the walks, which were interestingly varied, with marvellous views and clearly defined paths. The route notes were accurate and helpful, and the hotels welcoming, clean and comfortable. The Headwater team helped sort out problems with travel resulting from the French rail strikes, which was very reassuring.
By Mis Galliers on 17/06/2016
Interesting but not our most enjoyable Headwater trip. Hotels were isolated with little buzz in the immediate vicinity. No steer on places of interest/ visits etc what to do ( other than fix your puncture! ) from rep.
Found cycling country rather barren and shame about fly tipping.
New Palace Hotel was good but rather bizarre and probably only a quarter occupancy.
Bristol/Milan/Palermo resulted in arrival @ 11 therefore no evening meal ( just a cold plate).
Return journey leaving at 3am .....no breakfast.
By Mr Brady on 17/06/2016
The first thing to say is how friendly, welcoming, dependable and helpful we found Hannah. We are also aware of the amount of time and effort she put in to assist our fellow travellers after the lady injured herself.
We took all the longer walking options and experienced some weaknesses in the route descriptions, which we passed on to Hannah so that she can check them out.
We can understand why you chose the hotels that you did, but, while it was interesting to visit Turckheim, Kaysersberg and Riquewihr, all of which are beautiful, we would prefer to have stayed in locations that were not so thronged with tourists. For example, hotels in Kientzheim and Sigoldsheim, very close to Kaysersberg, had English speakers and offered evening meals.
Erratic opening times of shops, restaurants and cafes is also a bit problematical as you are setting off not knowing whether or not it is necessary to carry provisions. The cafe in Trois Epis and the restaurant at St Alexis Chapelle are cases in point. In the case of the latter, we would strongly recommend booking in advance. I'm sure Madame in Hotel Constantin would oblige.
All in all, we had a good time, enjoyed the local delicacies and wine, the beautiful and varied countryside and, in particular, the lovely unspoilt little villages that we walked through. We now look forward to our next trip with you to Menorca.
By Mr Morrison on 16/06/2016
A perfect way to enjoy the splendours of the Amalfi Coast from a perspective impossible for holidaymakers tied to the roads. The routes were planned so that each day's walking was different - from rugged cliff paths and breathtaking coastal scenery to peaceful lemon and olive groves and friendly villages. While this holiday does not have the same amount of walking we have had previously, we welcomed the days off as an opportunity to catch the ferry over to Capri and visit Pompeii and Herculaneum. All our 'standard' rooms at Amalfi, Positano and Marina del Cantone had wonderful sea views. We upgraded to be sure of a sea view in Sorrento and were booked in to the fabulous Belair Hotel - would really recommend this - and indeed the whole holiday.
By Mis Barrie on 16/06/2016
Many unspoilt cycle routes with stunning views
Hotel pools all very welcome after a hard day's cycling
By Mr Richards on 16/06/2016
We went for a canoeing holiday. which didn't happen.Obviously, Headwater were completely blameless.We made the most of it, with excellent help from Elizabeth (our Rep), by walking. This area, especially at this time of year, wouldn't have been my choice for walking. For us,this was a very expensive walking holiday.
By Mr Clarke on 16/06/2016
Luke & Eleanor the reps couldn't have been more helpful and made the holiday a special experience. Taking the extra days to allow for visits to Sienna and Florence added an extra dimension to the holiday and would thoroughly recommend doing this as an addition to visiting the hilltop towns.
By Mr Doublet on 16/06/2016
Great location and excellent Hotel with some fantastic walks for all abilities.
By Mr Kendrick on 16/06/2016
Brochure slightly misleading about Hotel Costa Dorada; the idyllic location portrayed was not accurate - next to a busy public car park, not an isolated location. We had upgraded rooms so they were fine. Others in the group were very disappointed with their rooms. Walks were good and our guide Alberto was superb. He really made the holiday.
By Mrs Lorimer on 16/06/2016
A break that takes you off the beaten track to meet the people who live in the region, rather than just other tourists. A holiday that slows you down to the speed you can cycle including the most amazing 60km down hill ride!
By Mr Crossley on 16/06/2016
Good alternative holiday
By Mrs Griffiths on 16/06/2016
Excellent cycling along the Atlantic coast, lovely hotels, interesting area to explore. The Furadouro Hotel was outstanding - welcome, food, swimming pool, rooms all superb.
By Mr Hall on 16/06/2016
Great holiday, wonderful guides, beautiful weather,gorgeous flowers ,perfect walks and fabulous views.
By Ms Friend on 16/06/2016
Sue and Dave are the most welcoming, well organised, hardworking , capable and fun hosts I have yet to come across on a walking holiday.
From the moment we met at the airport I felt confident that I was going to have a great holiday. They have perfected the art of gauging the ability of the group and pitching the pace of walks accordingly. By always having one leader at the front and one at the back everyone can walk at a pace that suits.
The food was of a consistently high quality. Freshly squeezed orange juice, cafetiÃ¨re coffee, fresh fruit cut and beautifully presented, yoghurt , toast and jams and something cooked too, breakfast was wonderful. Baguettes etc ready to collect before walks, lovely home cooked evening meals. Dave and Sue excelled themselves and we were all very happy and well fed throughout.
Daves jokes. Well, what can I say? There is no conversational topic that doesn't lead to a joke from his vast repertoire. And they all made me laugh!
Sue and Dave signposted what we could expect each day and created a relaxed and happy ambience though out. This enable the group to gel well. Our job was just to enjoy ourselves as they did everything else.
Dave took our requests for music for our last night paella party on the terrace, downloaded all our requests, even though we came up with way more than he asked for and we had a lot of fun dancing to them.
Dave even sent us a you tube link to a slideshow he made of the photos from our walks.
Thanks so much Sue and Dave, your efforts were much appreciated and way beyond the call of duty!
By Mr Salisbury on 16/06/2016
Great holiday in beautiful location. Headwater team were excellent throughout.
By Ms Feist on 16/06/2016
A very good trip. Where scores have been less than excellent this is because I think the hosts could welcome guests with an offer of drink after a day of exertion - including making tea/coffee available. At times the hosts were not visible and when they appeared it felt awkward asking for a service of this kind with the exception of Pazo Santemaria and Casa los Semoza (the latter had a bar). Some of the accommodation may not be conveniently located so meant waiting around to be picked up. An arrangement whereby the guest could have a taxi as he/she arrived at collection point would be better. Also in some places it was cool/damp weather and bed linen felt a little damp. Heating not always switched on (noticeable feature when one is tired) and I had to ask at one place for it to be put on as I was quite uncomfortable. However, luggage was always transported exactly which was reassuring. Blanca the guide in Leon was excellent and Headwater have made a very interesting programme of accommodation - full of interest/quirky and beautifully located. Thank you.
By Mrs Winter on 16/06/2016
We thoroughly enjoyed this holiday in Menorca. The weather was extremely hot all week so we often shortened the walks which is easy to do as many of them are linear walks. Although most of the walks are coastal there is plenty of variety. The hotel is absolutely lovely, in such a peaceful location with beautiful gardens. We had a very warm welcome on arrival and the service throughout the week was consistently good. All the staff were helpful and polite and nothing was too much trouble. Our accommodation, the gardens and all public areas were kept spotlessly clean and the food was good and plentiful.
By Mr Jones on 15/06/2016
This was our third trip with you and all have been most enjoyable - the right length of walks and the grading worked out fine.
By Dr Bainbridge on 15/06/2016
The balance of vineyard and forest was good. The towns and villages and castle were varied and interesting.
By Mr MacDonald on 15/06/2016
Wonderful chance to experience the Scottish Highlands and Loch Ness region. Everyting great including the weather!
By Mr Sedgwick on 14/06/2016
A good variety of walks with a good local guide through enchanting country side with magnificent wild flowers ( May is a good month for this holiday
By Dr Garton on 14/06/2016
great support right from time of booking, challenges such as French floods tackled proactively, very comfortable, civilised cycling
By Mr Wildsmith on 14/06/2016
Interesting area; good length of walks; very helpful rep.
By Mrs Baker on 14/06/2016
We enjoyed the challenges of walking in a beautiful landscape. The walks were varied and interesting. We also enjoyed time to relax returning home feeling refreshed
By Mrs Gourlay on 14/06/2016
We found the holiday extremely well organised, we had no problem with arrangements from start to finish despite the problems France are having at the moment with strikes. The reps Jon and Neu were the best we have experienced on any Headwater holiday, they worked hard to ensure the experience was as good as it could be. We were also impressed with the bikes, which were easy to operate and very comfortable.
By Mrs Reynard on 14/06/2016
A wonderfully relaxed but interesting holiday with good food and a comfy bed, a highlight was when we saw a Heron catch a snake and fly off with it in it's beak, as we were cycling along by the side of it!
By Mr Buckham on 14/06/2016
Despite a week of rain we were able to enjoy walking and the hotel was really good, though couldn't really appreciate the outside facilities. Only thing that would have helped would have been access to a drying room for waterproofs and boots.
By Dr Leiper on 14/06/2016
Great cycle holiday on easy cycle paths with quality bikes and excellent hotels.
By Mrs Cronin on 14/06/2016
A very well organised holiday giving us the chance to visit places we would not have otherwise seen.
By Mr Wightman on 14/06/2016
We really enjoyed this first cycling holiday, we loved the Tuscan countryside and the rustic food, delicious wine! We regularly enjoy our bicycles at home but are not 'cyclists'. So the 'undulating hills' and ' steady climbs' mentioned in the brochure were a lot more challenging than we expected. Having said this, we completed the route with a great sense of achievement and looked forward each day to a new adventure !
By Mrs Prentis on 14/06/2016
I was a little sniffy with the 40km every other day distance. However the hills more than make up for it. We are both very fit and did manage the hills but it was warm and quite a few are long and on the stranda bianca which are unmade up and with the wrong size of stones which makes cycling quite difficult at times. The area is lovely and the reps were delightful and extremely helpful.
By Mrs Wallis on 14/06/2016
Very pleased with holiday and organisation -excellent introduction to Slovenia
By Mrs Ramsden on 14/06/2016
Superb cycling location with generally very quiet roads, beautiful countryside and pretty villages perched on hilltops. The reps were really helpful in every way and we enjoyed our time with them. Whilst staying at the Hermitage hotel we ate in the local town at the restaurant - Dame L'Oie which was superb. At Vaison la Romaine we ate at La Barantavelle which was a wonderful meal and far superior to the alternative restaurant in the Old Town. The most disappointing was Castel Mirei as although the owners were very helpful, both breakfasts and evening meals were very poor with extremely slow service and the room was very 'tired' with traffic noise from a side road interrupting any peace. There is however a decent sized pool and small cool sitting room with cold drinks to purchase which were very welcome.
The cycling instructions were generally easy to follow though we would welcome more distances being included between turning points and perhaps a small trip metre on the bike which we have had on other holidays with one of Headwater' s competitors.
Dear Mrs Ramsden,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire. Please be assured, all of the feedback we receive is valued and used to help enhance our holidays for the future.
It sounds from your feedback that you had an enjoyable holiday and made the most of your time in this region. We were pleased to see you found the service provided by our reps useful and enjoyed spending your time with them.
We were however sorry to read of your disappointment with Castel Mirei, whilst we agree there are a number of great features to this accommodation, we have taken the decision to replace this hotel for the 2017 season.
We are also making some exciting changes to the way we produce our route notes.
Over the past couple of summers, we have received many requests to make the notes electronic and downloadable so customers can use them on their smart phone or tablet device. We are going to trial this in the cycling resorts that feature experienced Headwater reps, and for all of our new cycling holidays. Then once we gain feedback, we plan to roll this out to other resorts for future seasons.
We will, of course still provide hard copy notes for any customers that prefer this style and for our non-rep regions.
We hope you will agree, these changes will help to continue to enhance this holidays for the future.
In closing, we would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your continued loyalty, we look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mr Loaring on 14/06/2016
A wonderful holiday with excellent walks in beautiful countryside; staying in comfortable, well appointed hotels, which for us were marred by the fact that very few concessions were made to guests who did not eat meat, and therefore we did not eat very well throughout the week except on the evenings when we had to eat out at restaurants of our own choice (when we were very well catered for). However, one of the most attractive aspects of a Headwater holiday is to be accommodated in a comfortable hotel offering good cuisine at the end of a day's walking, and not having to go out again searching around for somewhere attractive to eat.
By Mr Curwen on 14/06/2016
A lovely relaxing holiday in a great location and fantastic walking opportunities.
By Mr Duggleby on 14/06/2016
Another excellent self-guided walking holiday from Headwater. Everything was up to the very high standards we expect from them. The entire 8-day holiday was a delight including the visits we chose (Padova, Monselice) on our days off. We chose to walk the suggested options for our last day off. The weather was poor but we had a fabulous 'extra' day of walking.
This area of the Vento is so beautiful and the walking around the Euganean Hills was terrific. Sarah our lovely rep was superb. Thank you Headwater.
By Mrs Honey on 14/06/2016
Fairy tale ancient towns, which were lovely to explore. The wine, of course was delicious although we did not visit the vineyards on walks but indulged in the evening . The nesting storks were one of the highlights of the holiday. Do try to visit the stork breeding centre it was lovely with a lot to see as well as the storks themselves..
By Mrs O'Brian on 13/06/2016
Overall the holiday was thoroughly enjoyable. The walks were varied and a good length and covered some beautiful scenery. I think the 1+ rating was quite accurate - the walks were usually around 4 hours with some up and downhill sections but nothing particularly difficult. The accommodation was good as were most of the meals. Our guide, Tiago, was brilliant! He was knowledgeable, organised, flexible and just a really nice guy to hang out with. My only advice for future travellers would be to make sure to take insect repellent or a zapper for Tavira. The mozzies were like helicopters there.
By Mrs Moffett on 13/06/2016
We enjoyed it. very much. Steve was very good at adapting to our limited capacities.
By Mr Henderson on 13/06/2016
Headwater take care of planning process of a walking holiday. They provide efficient and reliable travel arrangements, excellent and interesting accommodation and a superb variety of walks with comprehensive notes. Our guide had walked the routes shortly before to double check their accuracy, attention to detail that reinforced our confidence. Evening meals are arranged for the first night at each location, giving us opportunity to explore, if we wished, on other evenings. In fact, our greatest concern was which wine to drink.
By Mr Cranmer on 13/06/2016
Tougher walking than expected. Most days finished with steep climb. Hotels variable, rep. super. Countryside lovely. We decided to have a rest from walking on Day 3 and hired bikes which was a pleasant change.
By Mrs Robertson on 13/06/2016
Excellent holiday. Be sure to carefully check the travel details if you have requested any changes or non-standard arrangements.
By Mrs Sparshott on 13/06/2016
don't under-estimate how hilly/undulating Tuscany is.
By Mr Rodgers on 13/06/2016
No comment - the unseasonal weather curtailed cycling on one day (thunderstorms) so this did affect the overall holiday experience with another day that was also wet.
By Mr Daniel on 13/06/2016
First visit to the Algarve and first cycling holiday. Hard work for a couple of days but the rewards matched the effort. Lovely locations and hotels had top quality staff. Our two reps were lovely and incredibly helpful. We have used Headwater only a few times over 20 or so years, but every time the holiday has been special. That is why we have always looked them up when considering a trip overseas.
By Mr Hughes on 13/06/2016
We decided to combine the Highlights of Montenegro Walk and Delights of the Dalmatian coast Walk. We took the first date in May. Imagine our surprise on waking on the first morning, to find a thick layer of snow had fallen overnight and was continuing to snow quite heavily. We hadn't anticipated snow at all and ended up wearing as many clothes as we could! However it made the mountains and forests look even more beautiful. It started to melt the next day and conditions were very slippery. Poles were needed by most people.
In Croatia the temperatures soared into the 30's and we found the walks on day 5 and day 7 very challenging, steep, stoney paths,very hot. We felt this was more than a one boot holiday. The first hotel in Dubrovnik was five star and very nice but not necessarily needed for a walking holiday, especially as we had virtually no time to use the facilities. We had great guides and drivers and everything was very well organised. We had an enjoyable holiday in amazing scenery.
By Mrs Keeley on 13/06/2016
Very enjoyable week in a lovely part of Italy. We found the walks varied and interesting, though more challenging overall than the 2 boot rating - particularly the first and last day's walking, which involved some long and fairly steep ascents and some difficult descents (not just because of the rain - a lot of sustained scrabbling down loose chippings which was very tough on the knees). The walking instructions were overall accurate and easy to follow, though part of one route - from Assissa - was closed, and obviously had been for some time (we were not told about this before setting off) and on the final day at several points on the walk to Spello we got briefly lost due to the lack of clarity in the instructions. The hotels varied - Le Silve was oustanding in terms of location, accomodation, food and service, with La Tavola not far behind. Le Terazza is a bit far out of town - we would have liked to have stayed in Assissi - but we found the restaurant, food and service there fine. The food (particularly for vegetarians) and service at La Bastiglia was poor - fortunately when we returned to spend an extra night in Spello the restaurant was closed so were were booked into another much better restaurant - 'The Wine Drinker'. Late May is a good time to walk in Umbria, lots of wild flowers and new growth and not too hot.
By Ms D'arcy on 13/06/2016
The holiday, although accurately described etc,, the reality exceeded my expectations! Thoroughly enjoyed every moment. The meals, wines, and accommodation were all of a consistently high standard - without pretension or ostentation - a testament to the Italians respect and belief in the quality of their products. The countryside and people were also amazing, acts of kindness from strangers showed me several times what it means 'to go the extra mile'. The cycle routes are well designed, as is the holiday that alternates cycle days with rest days.
By Rev Rees on 13/06/2016
A wonderful mix of relaxation and activity on the walking/ cycling holiday. Everything was well organised and we thought the hotel in Ta Cenc was fantastic. Gozo is definitely a place to go back to.
By Mr Dick on 13/06/2016
We had really good walks in quiet, beautiful countryside in a part of Europe that is so far relatively unspoiled by excessive tourism. Our guide was friendly and knowledgeable and the group of 13 got on very well with each other.
By Ms Kay on 13/06/2016
Bermuda is a first class holiday destination. Walking round much of the island is a great way to experience the culture of the island first hand. Headwater enabled us to do that.
By Ms Woodall on 13/06/2016
Great holiday. Good challenging cycling days and a region with great food and wine for lunch and dinner. Headwater looked after us well again in Italy.
By Mrs Thomas on 13/06/2016
Don't be put off by the two and a half star rating of this holiday. We are two averagely fit 50+ couple that managed all the hills and they were well worth it for the fantastic views. Each hotel was unique and individual and the welcome you received at the end of a days cycling was lovely. The standard of food for most was good. We thoroughly enjoyed our holiday and have come back invigorated and amazingly pounds lighter! The reps Luke and Eleanor were very helpful and couldn't do enough for you - even texting us to see if we were alright on the only rainy day we had.
By Mrs Price on 13/06/2016
This was an interesting area of Italy and our holiday passed all too quickly with the usual Headwater mix of cultural visits and, of course cycling. The routes were well selected and mostly on cycle paths. Food was great. We didnt visit Padua, Vincenza or Venice as we preferred to explore the countryside. Otherwise the holiday was pretty much as described in the brochure.
By Mr Weymouth on 13/06/2016
I am really happy with Headwater in all aspects except, perhaps, the standard of accommodation (at times). Although, in this instance, you do advertise that the hotel's accommodation will be a standard room, there are no definitive descriptions of standard compared to other rooms/prices. The room we were offered would have 'sufficed', but when staying for a length of time I think it is evident that a more comfortable room with more amenities would make the holiday that much more of an enjoyable experience. That is difficult to deduce from your literature. (We upgraded at El Milano Real as soon as we arrived).
When using your company in the past (on Inn-to-Inn walks) there have been other instances where we have felt a little let down by the quality of hotel.
By Mrs Butterworth on 13/06/2016
The walks are strenuus enough that we felt a glow of achievement on finishing each one, but not so difficult that we sruggled as occasional hikers. The mix of agriculture and woodland walking surrounded by birdsong is wonderful.
Adding an extra 3 nights in Venice staying at the Hotel Kette made the whole holiday one to remember for many years.
By Mr Emerson on 13/06/2016
1/ Never give up the Morvedra Nou; one of the most relaxing and enjoyable hotels we have stayed at. We had a junoir suite with a patio overlooking the pool - the best in the house.
2/ I know this was only a grade 1, but any experienced walker could have done a lot more. We spent some spare time on the beach. Would not be so good at high season, would be too hot and crowded.
3/ 'Would you take another holiday with Headwater?' - I think we have done them all. at least at grades we can manage now. I am well in the 80-90 bracket - not in your age scale! - but I think we started with Heaswater in 1998. I have all the notes and paperwork in boxes in the attic.
4/ I was worried about French Air Traffic Control industrial action, but we were notaffected.
Dear Mr Emerson,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire. Please be assured we value all of the feedback we receive and use this to help us continue to improve and develop our holidays for future customers.
It is lovely to see you continue to enjoy your walking holidays with us; we value your loyalty dearly and look forward to welcoming you on your next holiday.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mr Cross on 08/06/2016
Definitely a two--boot walk, especially the day to Almadabra Park hotel, which was the longest and had some quite hazardous sections on the coast path.We were in late May and had some disappointing weather, and there was no question of swimming in pools or on beaches. Hotels were good, although the dinners at the Monterey/Porto Christo were poor - dinners and breakfasts at other hotels and restaurants were good. Francisco our taxi driver did the job OK but he speaks only Catalan and a little French.
By Mr Craig on 08/06/2016
A very good experience with lovely location, accommodation and scenery.
By Mr Godsall on 08/06/2016
We were very pleased with the walking routes and overall package, plus interesting days out in Cordoba and Malaga. The hotel in Zuheros was slightly 'simpler' than we'd normally choose but they worked so hard to provide excellent service; taxi was great too. A well planned holiday in an area we would not have discovered apart from through your brochure - we rate Headwater highly.
By Mrs Marsden on 08/06/2016
The holiday was everything I hoped for and expected. Beautiful location and weather with lots of wild flowers I had hitherto only seen in books. The people in the group were a good mix, we all got on well together and our common interest cut across the wide age range. Our guide Stephanie was wonderful in every way . She was friendly and personable with a good sense of humour and was a fund of knowledge on the the location, historical background, flora and fauna. We could not fault her! The website was easy to negotiate and very user friendly.
By Mr Abrahams on 07/06/2016
Excellent concept well executed
By Mr Grierson on 07/06/2016
A very well organised holiday with superb Sardinian hospitality and comfortable accommodation. Alberto's extensive knowledge of the history, flora, fauna and geology of the island added to a wonderful week's experience as did his 'surprises and adventures'!
By Mrs Parsons on 07/06/2016
A friendly guide,very good knowledge of area,fantastic lunches. Great walking,a lovely group of people,will book another trip next year. Thank you Headwater.
By Mr Fox on 07/06/2016
A most enjoyable holiday in Provence - beautiful surroundings and the villages could always serve great coffees! Good to have a chance to explore locally on alternate days, on the bus or on the bikes. Excellent accommodation and support from Jon and Neu.
By Mrs Greenbank on 07/06/2016
We had tried to book this particular holiday in previous years but the dates didn't work out. It was well worth the wait as it has to be one of our best Headwater holidays - and we've had quite a few. Piedmont is a wonderful place to visit, the walking was as expected - it's a hilly place! The hotels were all good and all had their own special elements. We enjoyed eating in different places each night- and what an excellent standard of food was on offer.
By Mrs Loch on 07/06/2016
Madeira is an excellent year-round easy walking destination. The custard tarts are to die for
By Mr Kilby on 07/06/2016
We enjoyed our cycling holiday but the weather was terrible which marred our experience. We also thought some of the cycling was a bit monotonous, going through residential areas, particularly at the beginning and would have preferred not to have had to get the train, although it proved invaluable in the end due to weather. The lagoon part was generally nice however towards the end, the path had completely disintegrated and the little bridge had been washed away. It certainly needed two people to carry the bikes down and across. We informed the guide at the end of the holiday. I dont think this holiday would be suitable for families in summertime as the roads get very busy and there were more roads than we had expectred. We thought the route tracking on the garmin was an excellent idea and the best part of following the route. Totally reliable. The hotels were all good though not all were properly equipped to accept bikes, namely the one in Porto and the Hotel Moliciero.
By Mr Sherrard on 07/06/2016
The holiday was booked as it offered a wide variety of scenery and it didn't disappoint. Driving to walks in the first week of May was pleasurable as the roads were virtually empty, the landscape interesting and tourism minimal. I was pleased to have the satnav for the drive from Bilbao to Uncastillo. The wild flowers at this time of year were stunning; the Puy Mone walk being the star. The vultures and kites were seen in the Lumbier gorge and at other times. Smaller birds including larks, fly catchers and bee eaters were seen and added interest to the dramatic scenery of the Las Bardenas walk. Miguel, our hotelier, provided map printouts to compliment the Headwater route directions and advised on the walks to do each day depending upon the weather. The home produced salads and meats used in the pack lunches were delicious.
By Dr Roberts on 07/06/2016
We had an amazing trip cycling secrets of Sicily .Great combination of lovely scenery,interesting history ,well organised and good choice of hotels. Cycling is a great way to see a country. The people were friendly and welcoming .Would love to try another trip.
By Mrs Randall on 07/06/2016
Overall very good - excellent walks with very often a choice to extend or reduce length/difficulty. We found most of the walks easier than we expected but maybe that is our own walking experience here in the UK (Dartmoor)
Accommodation good although the beds were cold and seemed damp at our last stop - maybe a problem with being at the beginning of the season while temperatures were still low.
Out taxi driver was excellent, courteous, helpful and always on time.
By Mrs Officer on 07/06/2016
Excellent holiday all round. Information provided in the brochure was accurate. Headwater team very helpful and efficient in booking and administering the holiday.
By Mrs Fuller on 07/06/2016
Beautiful Island and walks. Morvedra Nou is a lovely small hotel. The staff are extremely friendly and helpful. The breakfasts were very good, continental style with plenty of choice. The evening meals were a bit hit and miss unfortunately. You are given the menu in the morning and there is a choice of two of each of the courses. Choose wisely!
By Ms Allen on 06/06/2016
Good mix of cycling and days off sightseeing around lovely Baroque towns-some of which feature in Montalbano.
We liked eating out in restaurants where we could eat typically Sicilian food.
Accommodation generally very good.
We went at the end of May which was hot enough during the day,especially when cycling, with much cooler evenings.
By Mr Hewson on 06/06/2016
What a great way to see the Amalfi/Sorrento peninsula. The walks take you through stunning scenery away from the roads - areas that you would definitely not see from a car or a bus. The Walk along the Path of the Gods is breath taking. You also get the opportunity to see a wonderful array of colourful wild flowers. Don't miss Ravello and the two villas with their stunning gardens. The walk back to Amalfi from Ravello is very interesting for its industrial archaeology.
The Capodimonte and Luna Convento Hotels were particularly luxurious and we had great sea views. The food in both was very good with plenty of choices.
We had booked 2 extra nights in the Capodimonte and were told before leaving the UK that we had half board on one of the nights so we were delighted to find that in fact the price we had paid included dinner on all four nights.
Pompei and Heraculeum are very interesting and a must. If you are going to see them by train from Sorrento, it is a good idea to go early afternoon rather than morning as the trains and the sites are less busy then.
Headwater take note:that we did see a snake crossing the path before Massa Lubrense. My husband said it was only about 2 feet long but I think it was more like 6 feet!! It was jet black. The internet says that this type is completely harmless and in fact is a good garden aid as they eat pests.
If visiting Massa Lubrense on your way to Sorrento, it is worth walking right down from the main square to the terrace overlooking the sea and going down the steps to the restaurant 'Il Cantuccio'. It serves great food in a shaded terrace adorned with colourful flowers and with wonderful views of the sea and Capri.
All in all - what a great holiday!
Janet Hewson 31 May 2016
By Mr Loughlin on 06/06/2016
We expected 4 star hotels but got small 2 star rooms . Food was mostly not impressive and service poor . Staff were friendly and cycle agents excellent . Umbria lovely but route would have been very demanding without the power assist cycles which were excellent for ladies but ran out of steam for gents towards the end of each day
By Mr Roberts on 06/06/2016
The holiday overall was good with two provisos
It is a misnomer to call it a coastal cycling holiday. Very litle time was spent cycling along the coast or even close to it.
It is harder than a 1 cycle holiday. It fits into the description of a 2 cycle holiday without a doubt. Too many times were spent walking the bicycle uphill. Only one of the 5 days could be considered 1 cycle.
By Mrs Ing on 06/06/2016
A relaxing holiday in an unspoilt part of France. The coastal scenery is fantastic and the uncrowded stretches of beaches a joy to behold. What really made the holiday was Steve. He was so helpful and accommodating we were made to feel quite special.
By Mr Jones on 06/06/2016
Good holiday, scenic routes and very pleasant towns and villages. Excellent support from local Headwater staff Stephen Miles - you are lucky to have such an experienced person on board.
By Mrs Morgan on 06/06/2016
Southern Tuscany is beautiful and the food fabulous. Villa Acquaviva is a beautiful place to stay with much of its produce organically home grown.
By Mrs Kyle on 06/06/2016
Excellent holiday, cycling is the perfect way to explore. We enjoyed it all - some freedom, some things sorted out
By Mrs Warnock on 06/06/2016
Our first cycling holiday and it will definitely not be our last!! Cycling through Catalunya was a real treat, beautiful peaceful countryside, wildflowers were so colourful, medieval villages to explore,lots of restaurants choice for coffee or lunch and then to end the day great hotels and delicious food. What's not to like?Highly recommended.
By Mrs Moulton on 06/06/2016
We went for our honeymoon and the holiday was a perfect mixture of challenging cycling with beautiful views, lovely hotels and fantastic food.
By Mr Boyce on 06/06/2016
Great holiday with truly excellent food and accommodation! You really should take the detour to Novello Junction on day 6.
By Mr Shortman on 06/06/2016
We had a wonderful weeks walking, the hotel was in a lovely hill top village. The walking was good in wonderful scenery with beautiful wild flowers and birdsong.Antonio and his staff looked after us really well and we also enjoyed our day trip to CÃ³rdoba. This was our twelfth trip with yourselves and one of the best.
By Mrs MacLeod on 06/06/2016
Very well organised trip. Varied walking; enjoyed walking along the levadas but views often restricted by trees. Misty on some days so some high level walks would have been good.
By Mrs Hansen on 06/06/2016
Fantastic walking, great variety. Very enjoyable holiday. One of our best headwater holidays
By Mrs Stillwell on 06/06/2016
Adventure before dementure!
By Mrs Briddick on 06/06/2016
We were very lucky with the weather and this is important when on a cycling holiday! The accommodation was varied and highly suited to starting and ending a days cycling. We loved the routes which were through beautiful countryside ( isn't this lovely! I kept saying) and which provided us with convenient coffee and lunch stops. The cycling was spot on for a 1 cycle ride but it also offered more hilly routes is we wished to challenge ourselves. We soon found we had total confidence in the route notes and once when we went wrong I said - Sarah would never send us down this road! And I was right. You have to be a little flexible - one of our routes was blocked off by a motorcycling event but we were able to use the notes to rejoin the trail. We thoroughly enjoyed the food and the delicious local wine. I made friends with my bike and always looked forward to the next day's expedition. Great holiday!
By Mr Charlett on 06/06/2016
Vistas of Valencia was an excellent holiday. The hosts/guides were exceptional. The accommodation was comfortable and characterful. The food was excellent. The walks were sometimes quite challenging but accomplished without difficulty for people who are reasonably fit and walk regularly. The scenery was stunning.
By Mr Soutar on 06/06/2016
Such a beautiful area and we enjoyed the walks - even in mixed weather conditions!
All the hotels were excellent - the staff friendly and welcoming and all meals and wines were delicious. There was plently to keep us occupied on our rest days.
Altogether, a perfect holiday!
By Ms Poole on 06/06/2016
It was great to have such a complete break and while we didn't it the support available from the rep it was reassuring to know that assistance was only a call away. We particularly enjoyed moving on from town to town and having the rest day in between walkis created a great deal of variety as we got to see other towns. We particularly liked Villa Lussana and the food was really good there - it was also the first walk we didn't get lost on so there was a great sense of achievement in arriving there!
By Mrs Feerick on 06/06/2016
The Camino is a wonderful experience. The walking can be challenging so you need to practice before your holiday. The accommodation was mixed, breakfast tended to be a disappointment. The star of the show for us was Rectoral de Goian. A wonderful place with great food and a sincere welcome. Overall the accommodation is lovely and given the standard that some of the pilgrims use it is pure luxury. The bag transfers and pick ups ran like clockwork.
By Mr Eamer on 06/06/2016
Peaceful location, excellent coastal and inland walking away from the crowds
By Mr Parr on 03/06/2016
The weather was dreadful for the entire week we spent in Austria. It was cold and rained every day. Several of the recommended restaurants and cafes remained closed because of the bad weather although it was the start of the summer season. We put on wet weather gear and did the walks anyway. It was great - we had the whole area to ourselves! The wild flowers were fantastic. It was a pleasure to come back to the Hotel Bergrose each day because we knew we could swim and sauna before dinner. The food in the hotel was excellent and we were very comfortable there. What could have been a dreary week turned out to be entirely pleasurable.
By Mr Ingram on 03/06/2016
A varied walk, first days along the magnificent coast and latterly along the river and into the forest. Comfortable Hotels and excellent food!
By Mr Galleymore on 03/06/2016
Romina was a fantastic representative, both very professional and friendly.
When my suitcase failed to arrive from Gatwick, and I had to wait 2 days for it to catch me up, she lent me a waterproof walking jacket and walking sticks.
By Mr Clayton on 03/06/2016
This was our first holiday with Headwater and we really enjoyed the whole thing. The walks were just what we wanted (helped by excellent weather) with varied terrain and views, we had no problem following the route notes (so hardly bothered with the maps provided) and found the lunches provided by the hotels were more than enough for us.
Our rep (Romina) was friendly, helpful and knowledgeable. The hotels were all great and the local restaurants, especially in Motovun and Opatija were excellent and great value. There're plenty of local wines too, which were not expensive and really good!
The region is beautiful, the people we met were friendly and we can't wait to go back.
By Mrs Price on 03/06/2016
Some of the walks were challenging. The second day's walk was long at 12,5 miles. Buzet was not a good centre for tourism. The old town was beautiful but nothing there really as was the new town. Unless you wanted to walk back up many steps from the restaurant in the new town, you had onlt the one restaurant in the old town. Food was not brilliant. We ate there on the second night and and they started packing up at 9pm. They did not even ask us if we wanted a dessert or coffee. Just wanted us out. And this was a Saturday night!!!! The walk on the escarpment was beautiful but it was impossible to find the path down again. The notes said it was a hard to find path but it was IMPOSSIBLE. There were four of us and we failed. If the paragliding naturists want their privacy then they should put clear markers where we should go!!!! This was meant to be a 7.5 mile easy walk We used our OS maps to find an alternative roiute but it meant the walk was 11.5 in total.. In the blue book, others had written the same problem. and we did mention to the rep.
By Mr Propert on 03/06/2016
This is a holiday of variety. In walks, from vineyards, open country and woodland. And in the towns too, from small hamlets to busy Auxerre. There is a lot to listen to and look at along the way - and we found Burgundy deserted - but that may just have been May.
Stephen Miles is newish to this post, but is thoughtful and showed great care. We presume that the instructions about the train back to Auxerre on the last walking day will now have been changed to 'Stephen picks you up opposite The Mairie'.
Note that our comment about food at Vermenton relates to the breakfast. The evening meals - both at La Fontaine for us, were excellent. No-one could have been more helpful than Mark and Alison at Vermenton. The meals at Chablis had the Bistrot BEFORE the hotel, and both were very good indeed.
By Mr Bendrey on 03/06/2016
This was a great holiday, well organised, excellent communication, excellent rep who was very helpful, great route notes, good quality bikes and gives you an opportunity to visit some fantastic places on the Istrian coast in Croatia and see some lovely sights.
My only concern is that some of the routes, in my opinion, are quite dangerous, especially the unsurfaced roads and gravel tracks. If you have no experience, or little experience of cycling, this holiday I would suggest is not for you. Even as a regular cyclist I found some routes difficult and challenging. If you struggle with heat, I would suggest not choosing a holiday in July/August, but go for May or early June. You could be spending 4/5 hours out in the heat on some days.
However, if you love cycling, then this holiday is perfect and first class, a great company to go with as everything was organised as advertised and I would throughly recommend it.
By Mr Langrish on 03/06/2016
Accurate description of contrasting scenery and cycling. Very quiet roads and plenty of flowers and birds to see.
By Mr Straughan on 03/06/2016
A beautiful area with quiet lanes and roads. Lovely villages, small towns and views. Super coastal locations, fantastic varied scenery and marvellous bird life and wild flowers. A fantastic holiday!
By Mr Jaffe on 03/06/2016
Thoroughly enjoyable holiday in a beautiful unspoilt part of Southern Italy. The people here are incredibly friendly, not just in the hotels but everywhere. The cycling wasn't too strenuous and the 7km descent into Capitolo was exhilarating ! All the hotels were of a very good standard. Enjoyed staying in the Trulli house even though Alberobello can become very busy with day trippers but our favourite place was the Masseria Salamina, (keep some space in the luggage to stock up on their excellent home produced extra virgin olive oil) ! The food in this region is wonderful with a good choice of restaurants at all the locations except Prezze di Greco where the evening meal is included. This was our 12th Headwater cycling holiday and it lived up to expectations.
By Dr Smith on 03/06/2016
Very poor because of the Herdade do Touril experience.
By Ms Henry on 03/06/2016
Our first cycling holiday and we had a great time - lovely countryside and towns which were also fun to cycle around. Instructions easy to follow so we never got lost! Already thinking of another trip!
By Mr Christy on 03/06/2016
Splendid trip - delightful area, some very well-selected places to stay and eat and excellent logistics from our two guides, who were great fun to be with. This holiday really delivered what was promised on the website and is a great way to explore the area.
By Mr Dodds on 03/06/2016
We thought Zuheros and the HotelZuhayra were both charming and beguiling - extraordinarily peaceful and calming - we were very sorry to leave and it took us some time to grow accustomed to the comparative mayhem of Granada . The taxi arrangements in Zuheros were quite remarkably efficient hts off to Maria and her brother - we would return to Zuheros tomorrow if we could = perhaps a progressive walk around these white villages might the na idea
By Mrs Morris on 03/06/2016
This was our first organised cycling holiday and it exceeded our expectations, the quality of hotels were fabulous and we really liked that we had 2 nights in each hotel which gave us time to explore each area. On reflection we would prefer to have had dinner in the hotel halm included as finding somewhere to eat was a real hit or miss and compared to the meals we had in the hotels we didn't find anything better. From our first enquiry with headwater the whole holiday couldn't have gone smoother, Michelle (I think) tailored the holiday to fit our needs perfectly adding in 4 extra days and organising the hotel for two of them. I certainly can't recommend headwater highly enough and have already looking at where to go next. Thank you to the whole team as this has to be one of our best holidays and we have had many! A special thanks to the couple at the bike hire, they were extremely friendly and very helpful.
By Mr Flett on 03/06/2016
A fabulous way to explore the beauty of rural Italy. The exercise during the day is balanced by delightful food and wine in the evenings. Self-guided cycling with Headwater offers independence, but with the comfort and reassurance of excellent local Reps. This was our second holiday with Headwater and is unlikely to be our last.
By Mr Renshaw on 03/06/2016
Cycling is a wonderful way to see a country and, particularly in Sicily, appreciate the abundance of wild flowers that line the roads we cycled. The accommodation and food were very enjoyable as were the receptions we got in both hotels and restaurants. Cycling is more enjoyable when your fit and we are but the pace of the holiday was good with interspersed non cycling days. We were able to enjoy some historical sites as well en route.
By Ms Lewis on 03/06/2016
A really interesting week in beautiful locations. On the walks we enjoyed the wonderful wildflowers, birds and butterflies and beautiful coastal views. We much appreciated the visits that had been arranged to Segesta and Erice - full of interest. Nicola, our taxi driver, was really excellent - friendly, offering information and always on time and very well organised. The walking was great, well off the beaten track but on reasonable footpaths - all in all, a very good week.
By Mr Homer on 03/06/2016
I find the website a bit 'clunky' to navigate but Ok once you get used to it. The holiday was accurately described and I enjoyed it. The casa Carrascal operation is very well run and gives a very good service to clients.
By Mr Bauld on 03/06/2016
Gozo & Malta, a great combination for peace & tranquility & great walking opportunities in Gozo at Ta Cenc plus all contrasting attractions of Malta!
By Ms Coates on 03/06/2016
Walking with confidence and accommodation with comfort.
By Mrs Hartley on 03/06/2016
We never imagined walking through vineyards could be so varied and interesting; the countryside was beautiful and the villages charming. The hotel staff all looked after us very well. Our Headwater rep was absolutely delightful and could not have been more friendly and efficient. We did not see a see any UK cars nor heard any other British people but most people we spoke to replied in good English when we spoke to them in our basic French.
By Mrs Preston on 03/06/2016
From the moment we received our holiday information pack we were excited as it really whetted our appetites. We also had a post card from our Rep, Hannah saying that she hoped we would have a good trip and she looked forward to meeting us at the station in Colmar and giving us her mobile number in case we needed her. This was a very thoughtful gesture. So, even though I had a bad back and had to be transported around by Hannah instead of walking, the overall holiday was wonderful.
By Mrs Thornton on 03/06/2016
The Morvedra Nou was the kind of friendly, family run, quality hotel that we always hope we'll find but all too rarely do. The rooms may be compact for some people but we were very comfortable, especially given the spacious private terrace. The food was good, fresh and well presented. We were very happy with the choice of two dishes each day, though would have liked the chance to try the cheese for which the island is famous - either as an alternative to dessert or as an extra small course. But we would thoroughly recommend the hotel and the programme of walks, which were all surprisingly different, considering this is a small island. It was our first trip to Menorca and we found the holiday perfect for those who like an active morning and lazy afternoon!
By Mr Higginson on 03/06/2016
The holiday notes for Coastal trails of Minorca were pretty accurate. Overall we found the island delightful and at this time of year absolutely stunning with all the wild flowers in full bloom. Very easy to get around and not too crowded. We also were blessed with the weather which was in the low 20 C range
By Mr Watson on 03/06/2016
A good holiday with excellent walks, but bear in mind this is run by Exodus, so hotels not up to the usual Headwater standard.
By Mr Monzani on 03/06/2016
This was an excellent hotel and Sue and Gordon really looked after us. The food was great and the facilities were super. The walks were mostly good for us although quite testing for me in places. They were relatively short but in my opinion were greater than a 1 boot+ probably more like a 2 boot. My particular problem is that I suffer from severe vertigo and this resort is nearly 600 meters above sea level with very steep winding roads and many of the higher ones had no barriers. The local taxi drivers were really good but nobody should talk to them when driving because they use their hands to answer. Our guide Elaine was excellent and very understanding. However I backed off the last walk because it used 4x4 trucks to go high up, across winding narrow tracks and the walk was a bit hairy too. Don't get me wrong overall it was a great holiday.
By Mrs Pattinson on 26/05/2016
Tiago and Hugo were excellent guides using very well planned routes. They were very friendly and flexible in their approach. Everyone in the walking group was very friendly and sociable. Tiago was a fount of knowledge of birds and plants and was keen to pass on this knowledge.
By Mr Hay on 26/05/2016
A varied week with an excellent guide
By Mr Milward on 26/05/2016
Extremely well organised , with excellent local representative (Tony) who provided additional information and support without hesitation. Also provided local maps and timetables for my time in Faro which allowed me to enjoy that day, he also informed me about the industrial action at the airport which allowed me to make appropriate arrangements.
By Mr Hamilton-viall on 26/05/2016
We enjoyed it and had a lot of fun, but it could have been even better with a few tweaks. Some of the walking notes certainly need reviewing as we wanted to enjoy the walking, not stand scratching our heads wondering if we had the right path. An explanation of the GR markers would have been really useful as we had to find out what they meant by trial and error. Also there were markets or events on some days that it would have been nice to know and arrange our days off to coincide with.
As regards hotels the Monrecour was superb, the labourderie very good and the Meysset OK. Les Glycinees we found varied. The location was great, the room ok. The food at the hotel varied from some of the best ever eaten to some of the worst. Our picnic sandwich was inedible. Generally it did not have the same feel as the other hotels. Also tea or coffee making in all hotels would be appreciated.
By Mrs Sodring on 26/05/2016
This was the best holiday we have taken with Headwater! Despite imperfect weather, the walks were wonderful (even though the vultures did not fly when it was raining); we saw the Rivers Tarn and Jonte both as green and peaceful and in full spate after rain. For those interested in wild flowers, this is a perfect holiday in May - the deciduous woods and meadows are full of them - lilies, orchids, asphodels ... and there are many birds besides the vultures in the trees.
Besides walking the main walks we also visited Montpellier le Vieux - do go and take the red route, the rock formations are stunning : Aven Armand - more commercialised but the stalactites are amazing: Vulture Museum (don't go on a wet day, there are no live vultures to see); finally, on our return journey to Toulouse, the Roquefort Society Caves - most interesting! The hotel, food, local wines, beer & picnics were excellent with wonderful service from the staff.
By Mr Cheetham on 26/05/2016
For keen walkers who want a holiday organised for them, including luggage-transfer, and are prepared to pay, this is an excellent holiday, but not for the faint-hearted or unfit, as although the distances seem short, the walks are often very strenuous, and there are frequent opportunities for stumbling over loose surfaces, especially on descents. The route descriptions are meticulous, and well-marked,and there is really no need for map-reading. The evening food is often expensive, especially at The Haven, where there is really no local alternative.
By Mrs Jackson on 26/05/2016
This was a well designed holiday with a good balance of walking and sightseeing . The group size was just right.
I doubt we could have had a better leader. Elisabetta was a delight to be with. She was charming, witty, knowledgeable , interesting and keen to ensure we were involved in decision making wherever it was possible . Her recommendations for places to eat were excellent.
By Mr Dryburgh on 26/05/2016
Had a great holiday. Eleven off us in the party and we all got on well together. No cliques. Wine tasting on the Sunday got us all going.
By Mr Kaye on 18/05/2016
Outstanding food in lovely hotels. Top class local support, advice and guidance. Stunning walks through fascinating medieval villages, shady forests and patchwork quilts of colourful fields.
By Mr Page on 18/05/2016
Cycling tougher then expected because of strong winds on most days and volume of traffic. The write up suggested a Gozo that disappeared a while ago but a cycle way round the island is being developed. Hotels lovely and distances appropriate, terrain tough in places because of
steep hills and strong winds
By Mr Grant on 18/05/2016
The holiday was excellent and the walks sufficiently challenging without being too onerous although some of the climbs are pretty severe and you need a head for heights on some short stretches of the levada walls. If you want superb views this holiday is great but if you suffer any degree of vertigo this is not the holiday for you.
By Mr McPoland on 18/05/2016
This holiday was promoted as a walking holiday, but in reality, the climate made walking difficult - temperature 32 Celcius, heavy rain most days and very humid. For people of average fitness, it proved tiring, so that we did more sightseeing, and particularly beach days (the beaches are excellent and uncrowded). It was also necessary to drive everywhere, which detracted somewhat from the experience. A gorgeous location, but not really suitable for the typical Headwater holiday maker.
By Mr Exell on 18/05/2016
A wonderful guide lead us through a fascinating part of Italy and along the way we enjoyed superb local cuisine and wines.
By Mrs Roundtree on 16/05/2016
Puglia is a fantastic part of Italy to visit - a real hidden gem - and a perfect location for cycling. We were lucky with the weather and got a good week but the weather in April can be variable (i.e. cooler and wetter than we had). Beautiful countryside and lovely coastline with proper beaches. Excellent food and friendly people, We would go back again.
By Mr Cottam on 16/05/2016
A great way to see different areas of a country and meet new people.
By Mr Hamilton on 16/05/2016
This was a hub Hotel walking holiday enabling us to select the walk to suit the daily weather with the expert and sound advice of the Rep Teresa (hotel owner). Having car hire we were able to spend the rainy day in Salamanca - where the sun shone! The first week in May found us trudging through snow on one walk and waltzing through spring flowers on another. All great fun. Ibex herds added to the entertainment on one of the walks. The Blue Book was up to date with additional helpful comments. Hotel staff were superb as was the cuisine and the views from the hotel.
By Mrs Broome on 16/05/2016
By Mr Floyd on 11/05/2016
VERY well organised. HIGHLY efficient. Excellent hotels. Hard to beat
By Mr Drane on 11/05/2016
Great holiday if you are fit and active. Some of our group struggled as they were expecting gentle strolling.
Anyone expecting high quality accommodation and fine dining would be disappointed
On arrival we were told that no sea view rooms were available even though we had paid for one booked months ago. The hotel staff had little idea how to deal with this situation. Consequently we were highly disappointed. Eventually they found one, although it was nothing like the standard of accommodation that we were expecting, having recently stayed on La Palma with headwater.
We notice that Exodus have more information in their brochure.
By Mr Aiken on 11/05/2016
Our only criticism is that of alternative departure airport does make a huge difference to the cost. The airline we were booked with is a low cost budget alternative, but we would have done far better to book independently. Any perceived benefit by having a 'package' booking was lost when flights were changed and no explanation or option was offered by Headwater. This is our 6th or 7th walking holiday with Headwater so we obviously happy overall, but the personal touch has been lost over the last few years. It is now much more of a 'package' and we would point that out to friends considering a walking/activity holiday. We have organised our own holidays of a very similar nature and that results in at least a 25% reduction in cost along with the benefit of being an independent booking at the destination - i.e. a higher value individual to the hotel.
By Ms Burrluck on 10/05/2016
A pretty perfect holiday. Headwater were very well organised and my reps, Brian and Olivia, were totally fantastic - helpful, very efficient and totally reliable. I was walking on my own and they texted me to ensure I had reached my destinations safely. The walks were wonderful and the instructions very clear. Everywhere I turned there was a picture postcard view. This is a wonderful area of Spain to visit - I did the Catalan Classic Walking holiday and walked every day, even though I didn't have to but there was so much I wanted to see. Wonderful that there was always hot water for a good soak in the bath when I got back to my hotel. I didn't want to come home although, to be honest I couldn't have kept up the walking for many more days.
By Dr Goldberg on 10/05/2016
This was an excellent holiday. The cycling was along very flat routes down the beautiful Atlantic Coast and around the pretty lagoons. Porto and Aveiro were great places to have days off. The hotels were good or very good. We ate some delicious fish and everyone was very friendly and welcoming.
By Mrs Gibson on 09/05/2016
It was excellent from start to finish. Our reps Tony & Ludmila Lewis made our holiday experience special with their friendliness, humour and knowledge. Please pass on our thanks.I am hoping to book a walking holiday with Headwater next year with my friend please send me a brochure
By Ms Cozort on 09/05/2016
Beautiful region, fantastic scenery, good walks but not too strenuous.
By Mr Spiller on 09/05/2016
The pleasure of Headwater is that they do everything to make ensure your experience is exceptional - so it is!
By Mr Allan on 06/05/2016
Hotels selected were superb (a higher standard than we would normally select for ourselves - that is one of the real pleasures of travelling with Headwater). Pick ups and tranfers were seamless and enjoyable - it was a delight to hear the drivers laugh! Food through out was excellent. Check out board arrangements - Grand Hotel Capodimonte actually provided half board for the duration of the stay (and not just the first night!) and this included a free salad buffet every evenning. Towards the end of the first day walk from Ravello to Amalfi (after the ruined foundry) there is a restored warehouse called Agricola Fore Porte converted to a restaurant/cafe where you can drink fresh lemon juice - a delightful family run business witha multi lingual daughter. Well done Headwater another excellent holiday!
By Mrs Corris on 04/05/2016
The walking was varied and enjoyable although the weather could have been better.
By Ms Bartlett on 04/05/2016
I could not fault the hotel staff, who were all very friendly and extremely helpful. The walks were beautiful and April proved a lovely time of year with all the spring flowers.
By Mr Price on 04/05/2016
Everybody very helpful
By Mis Brooks on 03/05/2016
It was really great because we made it so. Headwater played very little part. The last walk was inadequately replaced with no warning or alternative. The second hotel was silly. You did not get a proper breakfast you had to pay extra. It was not to the standard of the other hotels was a strange choice. At the 3rd hotel there was nothing to do. We could not walk due to the weather. So this too was a strange choice. There were no reps what so ever. It did seem very expensive for what was provided. The taxi company used was excellent we were lucky to have the same driver 3 times. He really was wonderful with lots of recommendations for us. His name was neillo please pass on our regards.
By Mrs Ritchie on 03/05/2016
We enjoyed this holiday enormously although we spent quite a bit more than 5 hours on the walks between hotels so we didn't take the recommended walks on the days in between. The first walk is the hardest.
By Mr Stevens on 03/05/2016
Very enjoyable, well organised and good general standard of accomodation.
By Mr Hemsley on 03/05/2016
we upgraded most of your rooms as what was on offer was fairly basic. some of the cycle routes were on busy roads and the Italian drivers are not respectful of cyclists. however, the experience was a good one.
By Mr Story on 03/05/2016
The standard of the holiday was as good as expected - what really made this holiday so enjoyable was Tony and Ludmilla - their warm welcome, personal touch, and their knowledge of the area was second to none.
By Mrs Webster on 03/05/2016
We felt we were in very good hands with Tony and Ludmilla who could not have done more to make our overall experience so good. They really are so good at the job and it makes such a difference to have friendly and approachable people to enhance the experience. They helped us with train and bus times when we left Sagres at the end of the Headwater holiday - they have been the best agents we have come across!
By Mrs Dean on 29/04/2016
An excellent holiday if you are interested in spring flowers and migrant birds. The island of Marettimo was the highlight as was the stay in the tranquil and delightful Baglio La Luna. Our Taxi driver was particularly helpful,flexible, informative and friendly, and always came on time. The flight times could have been better - we had a 4 hour wait in Rome. However I think this could not be avoided. Our highlight was 3 new orchids we had not come across before. All the walks took us much longer than the notes indicated as we spent so much time looking at the amazing flora or this lovely island.
By Mr Queen on 28/04/2016
Very good hotel with friendly staff and guides, in a fantastic location.
By Mr Emms on 28/04/2016
really nice holiday but the food at the Kempinski trattoria was really poor- all freezer to fryier type bought in concoctions with nothing on the menu that appeared to have been bought in fresh and we really struggled to choose anything we would wish to eat. On the other hand the cocktails there were excellent!
By Mrs Dick on 28/04/2016
Gozo was an unexpected delight but because of its small size the cycling is VERY limited. We added on a day in Valetta which was lovely.
By Mr Witts on 27/04/2016
We are both fit and keen cyclists and enjoyed covering quite a large area in one trip.
The weather in late April was superb, most days 25 degrees with some windy rides which could prove to be tough going. It was a very varied trip with cultural interest in most of the destinations along with coastal scenic views mixed with agricultural landscapes. The wild flowers were in bloom but Sicilians have a habit of dumping roadside litter, which was a bit ugly at times. Montalbano was filming on location at Punta Secca, which was a stunning seaside location.
A lot of the absolute seaside bars and restaurants were seasonally closed in late April, so would advise to take picnics and pre purchase drinks before you set off.
By Mrs King on 27/04/2016
An excellent holiday with exceptionally helpful guides.a good variety of accommodation
By Ms Robson on 27/04/2016
The package provided by Headwater was excellent for the solo traveller as it included everything I needed to try xc skiing for the first time. The group approach made it a lovely week; small groups for skiing at different levels each day meant I always had people to ski with. The hotel is friendly and comfortable and ideally situated in the middle of miles of routes. Will definitely be going back!
By Mr Brownscombe on 27/04/2016
We had never been to the Caribbean before and found this a good introduction to find our way around. The days in Paris were enjoyable and got us in 'French mode'. We loved the vibrant colours, the warm weather and the lush vegetation of Guadaloupe and Martinique. The hotels on both the islands were good with friendly, helpful staff and really excellent meals. We especially appreciated the wonderful selection of fresh fruits and yoghurt at breakfast. We liked the fact that everything was French and almost all the other tourists were French which seemed to make it feel more exotic. The high points for us were walking in the rain forest, the visit to the ÃŽles des Saintes, the fantastic beaches, clear blue seas and great snorkelling. We did find there was a lot of driving and that the roads were sometimes very busy with traffic jams near the large towns. It might have been better to be based in two different places, especially on Guadaloupe.
By Mrs Gates on 27/04/2016
For a carefree holiday with attention to detail and comfort this ticked all the boxes.
By Mr Jones on 26/04/2016
Great holiday if you like volcanos
By Mr Curwen on 26/04/2016
A superb holiday. The walks are out of this world - such a beautiful place, quite magical. The hotels had excellent facilities which is just what you need after a day's walking. Well done Headwater!
By Mrs Jennings on 26/04/2016
Walking notes were excellent, the hotel was very comfortable if maybe a little formal for us. We had no problems getting around the island but it was very windy while we were there and some of the cliff edge walks were a little scary
By Mr Thornton on 26/04/2016
Relaxing, interesting and enjoyable blend of easy walking and sightseeing.
By Ms Yih on 26/04/2016
By Mr Holmes on 25/04/2016
An excellent holiday with an interesting and varied range of walks and activities. Well structured to give a decent impression of the Algarve region as a whole. The website and brochure provide a pretty accurate description of the holiday. The local guides were informative, helpful, friendly and very considerate of capabilities of different group members. My first experience of such a holiday, would happily do something similar again!
By Mis Whittaker on 25/04/2016
I have been on many Headwater holidays, mostly guided when traveling on my own or with one friend but some self guided when with a group of friends.
When travelling on my own Headwater provide accurate information about what to expect and provide a safe environment for me. I know enough about how they operate to anticipate accurately what the holiday will be like. Of course the other members of the group are a main factor but I have always found that they work well together. This is often helped by the guide understanding group dynamics.
By Mr Saunders on 25/04/2016
We very much enjoyed our holiday. The walking part was not as good as many we've experienced with other companies. This was partly because of its discontinuous nature - walking the Vermillion Coast with Sherpa gave us a full, continuous walk from the start in Colliure to the end at Cadaques. And apart from the 'Path of the Gods' and the walk from Ravello through the valley with the old iron works and paper mills, it was, in parts fairly mundane, particularly the last section to Sorrento. Our extension enabled us to see Herculaneum and Pompeii, and climb to the top of Vesuvius. We also took trips to Capri and to Napoli. So, all-in-all, the holiday was a great success. However, we would have been prepared to pay more for something that was slightly more interesting - better walks and better hotels. Having said that, the Luna Conventa was magnificent! Although the Capodimonte was very good in most areas, many English people we spoke to thought the quality of the dinner very disappointing.
By Dr Davies on 25/04/2016
A very nice holiday. The cycling was generally very good. It is a little hilly so is certainly a grade 2. There was a little bit more off road than we expected and one part of this was a particularly bad track which was slow going. Everything else was fine. The accommodation was good.
By Mrs Smith on 25/04/2016
If you go to Sicily with Headwater
You will find they have done all they oughter
You can swim, you can walk
You can eat or just talk
Your holiday will be just what you boughter.
By Ms Elliott on 25/04/2016
The walks were excellent and very accurately described and graded. Excellent options presented for the rest days. Ludmilla, our rep, was really helpful and had very good personal knowledge of the area and all the walks. Views were spectacular, especially on the coastal sections of the walks, and the wildflowers and bird-life were both wonderful. The slow-food restaurant at Vila do Bispo (A Eira do Mel) provided the outstanding meal of our trip. Hotel meals were generally pretty good, though the breakfast at Vila do Bispo was rather limited both in variety and quality. The weather was pleasantly cool for walking but, if you want to swim in the sea, you should probably go late April or May!
By Mrs Goldsmith on 25/04/2016
Walking in the French Caribbean was a wonderful experience. You do need to be prepared for all weather conditions; mostly very hot and humid particularly when walking away from the coast, but also some huge downpours (a particularly wet, albeit very enjoyable, volcano walk!). The coastal sections were our favourites, with the warm Caribbean wind to cool us down a little.
The catering (both dinners and breakfasts) was superb at both Jardin Malanga and Plein Soleil; the latter was rather leisurely in style. Claire at Jardin Malanga was a charming hostess.
We had a room upgrade at Plein Soleil; it was well worth it to have the terrace and plunge pool.
Both of our hire cars were small which was good for parking etc. but the hilly terrain could make them struggle rather! The access road to Plein Soleil was incredibly potholed and difficult to drive along.
By Mr Dane on 25/04/2016
We had a great holiday, because of the varied landscape, brilliant beaches, cultural mix and food. Also the welcome and service at Jardin Malanga made the stay in Guadeloupe really special. We loved the Caribbean but we are not sure a walking holiday at the time of year we went was the best thing for us. The temperature in Martinque ranged from 28-31degrees. We were always up by 7:30 having breakfast and out before 9o'clock....but by the time we drove to our allotted destination and embarked on a 9km walk, we ended up walking in the blazing midday sun, often up a steep incline which was just not enjoyable.
Guadeloupe had torrential rain as well as heat, and although you can't control the weather,we were ill prepared for the rain, especially stuck on the side of a volcano 300m from its rim. We spent most of our Guadeloupe stay driving north or east to get out of the mountain range with its rain!
By Pro Mitchell-borts on 25/04/2016
Teresa was extremely helpful. The hotel was lovely and the food was plentiful and delicious.
By Mrs Champion on 25/04/2016
A very beautiful and undiscovered part of Spain. Well worth a visit. Great hotel locations, good food, very good service. We would love to visit this area again.
By Mrs Evans on 25/04/2016
Great walks experienced with excellent help provided by Rambling Roger in choosing the best walks for our needs. Fantastic vistas and variety of terrain and flora. Even had time for visiting the Botanic Garden on way to the airport before the flight home. The Gran Canaria map was an order of magnitude better than those for many holiday locations. Plus very friendly, charming and helpful hotel staff providing good food. What's not to like.
By Mr Hilary on 25/04/2016
A few suggestions
a) Update your travel notes to refer to the actual kilometre-markers which are now in place
b) Arrange the final leg so that your clients have the option to be in Santiago for the midday pilgrim service in the cathedral
c) The staffing of the Casa de los Samozo was a source of great amusement, somewhat lacking experience, but all was still delivered
d) Hotel Petit Palace was noisy but the location was perfect
But overall the holiday surpassed our expectation and we will certainly consider Headwater again
By Mrs Smale on 18/04/2016
Enjoyable relaxed holiday with an excellent guide, Tiago, who introduced us to the lovely and varied countryside which was enhanced by the magnificent show of wild flowers. The walking was considerably harder than on other 1boot holidays, and deserved to be labelled as 1+ boot.
By Mrs Brewster on 18/04/2016
April was a beautiful time of year to travel to Puglia; lovely weather for cycling and the fields were full of wildflowers, cherry blossom, flowering mimosas etc. Although the cycling was all on roads, they were mainly very quiet, country lanes and we found the Italian drivers surprisingly patient and respectful of cyclists. The route deserved its 1 1/2 bike rating; it certainly seemed a bit more strenuous than the previous '1 bike' holiday we had done and we were very glad not to be tackling it in the heat of summer. This was our second Headwater holiday as a family and we think the formula works well for both us and the children (aged 11 and 13). They particularly embraced the Italian love of gelati!
By Mrs Wadsworth on 18/04/2016
A gentle skiing experience.
By Ms Jessop on 18/04/2016
Fantastic service from initial phone conversation with headwater to the holiday itself.
the cross country skiing was fantastic, and there were groups to suit every ability. The ski guides were all friendly and encouraging and the hotel accommodation laid back and welcoming. Overall a great experience.
Thanks for organising a wonderful holiday.
By Mrs Roper on 18/04/2016
This was a lovely holiday.The wild flowers were magnificent and the scents of orange blossom and fresh herbs will long remain with us.We enjoyed the variety of different tracks and the headland loop at Amado beach was stunning.The bikes were excellent with especially low gears for those hills,and the tour notes were pretty good. The welcome at all three hotels was genuinely warm and the accommodation very comfortable, except at Pedralva,where the bed felt like a marble slab, and gave us a restless 2 nights. The food and wine was fresh, wholesome and very well prepared.We thoroughly enjoyed this break and came back feeling refreshed and invigorated. We will definitely consider Headwater when choosing our next holiday.
By Mr Johnston on 18/04/2016
Outstanding walking area. Thoroughly enjoyable.
By Mrs Moysey on 18/04/2016
A most enjoyable holiday - the organisation and transfers worked well and the hotel was a 'gem', friendly and relaxing and with helpful staff. The walking notes were easy to follow although care was needed on some paths where stony. Overall splendid walks in beautiful scenery with many spring flowers.
By Mr Taylor on 18/04/2016
Madeira is a beautiful, friendly and welcoming island, ideal for gentle exercise and relaxation.
By Mr Schafer on 18/04/2016
Summary: Beautiful Hikes, Great Meals. Wonderful Hosts
The Hosts: Hardworking couple David and Sue will do their best to make
sure the holiday meets all your expectations.
The Hikes: With an exhaustive knowledge of the surrounding area David and Sue ensure that
best hikes in the area are chosen each day. During our trip, low clouds enshrouded the peaks
on one of the days and they substituted two shorter but equally beautiful hikes at a lower elevation.
We are avid photographers and they customized one of the hikes, dividing the group so that those of us who wanted to take advantage of enjoying the beautiful wildflowers could do so, while the other were able to accomplish the longer hike. The two boot difficulty level properly described the hikes. Several hikes had some short but steep ascents and loose stones so a hiking pole(s) may be helpful.
Lodging and Meals: Casa Carrascal is quirky updated townhouse in the middle of the small village of
Parcent, Our room, the Segovia suite was furnished with a double bed and and antique couch and chairs. The ensuite bathroom was nice but required that you duck under a beam to reach the area with the toilet/shower. The weather was cool and overcast during our stay and we were unable to take advantage of the outdoor terrace and the indoor common space outside the dining areas is very limited. Although WIFI is available in the bar just up the street, it would have been nice to have it available in the house.
The meals were excellent!!! Breakfast consisted of a choice of yogurts, fruits, cereals, and a hot
items that changed daily. Pack lunches were a choice of baquettes along with fruit, a sweet snack and a large bottle of water. Dinners were absolutely fabulous! Wonderful appetizers, a choice of delicious entrees, and a nice dessert, all complemented with a choice of white or red wine.
By Ms King-smith on 18/04/2016
A delightful few days' walking in lovely, remote, unspoilt countryside. I enjoyed the birdlife and spring flowers particularly. The Portuguese we encountered were personable and friendly and spoke excellent English. My friend and I loved the food and wine - our reward after a day of walking! We got a lot out of what was, objectively, quite a short holiday.
By Mr Faulkner on 18/04/2016
Hiring a car gave more flexibility and allowed us both to walk following some of the route, especially the Fisherman's Trail and so to see the coastline, as well as having more time to explore other parts of the region. Ludmilla was outstanding in giving helpful, discrete and unintrusive advice
By Ms Burrow on 18/04/2016
Gozo is rather small to provide long enough cycle rides. We did not expect wind and would have found it helpful to be told about how windy it can be. It was a lovely holiday with enough variety to keep us interested. The Cornucopia food was very disappointing and the breakfasts unappealing.
By Mr Payne on 18/04/2016
I have been on Headwater walking holidays before (not for at least 8 years ). I now have a partner and I needed to convince him that the holiday would be enjoyable. My partner is in good health and fit but he is 82 years and he was nervous that the walking would be difficult. I persuaded him that a 1 boot would be fine but it was harder that I thought it would be.
When I first telephone Headwater to enquire about the holiday the telephone rep was most helpful so I suggested that my partner telephoned so that he could ask for the information he needed - this time there was a different rep and she was not so reassuring.
However we enjoyed the holiday and will attempt another with Headwater..
By Mr Townsend on 18/04/2016
Accommodation at Hotel Finca was super and everyone on holiday there were very friendly, especially the five Singapore ladies who we were walking and dining with. They were great company.
By Mrs Randall on 18/04/2016
This was a brilliant, relaxing holiday and a fantastic introduction to Spain which we had never visited before. Wonderful countryside, a gem of a hotel, lovely food and really helpful staff and walks guide. It couldn't have been better.
By Dr Garwood on 18/04/2016
Third holiday in Leutasch skiing and walking. All have been excellent. Good quality hotel in good location and excellent rep in Steve Barrington.
By Mr Willis on 13/04/2016
apart from not being picked up at the airport a well organised and enjoyable holiday in a good area with a good instructor and very good accomodation
By Ms Allard on 07/04/2016
5 days of great walks, each very different from the other so lots of interest and great scenery. We were the only ones in the walking group and so it was great that Steve tailored the walks to suit us in terms of distance, speed and breaks. He went out of his way to make our holiday a success and even took us into Seefeld on his day off.
Another Headwater holiday success, thank you!
By Mr Cameron on 06/04/2016
Varied and interesting trip with excellent driver and enthusiastic and knowledgable guide
By Mrs Shipman on 06/04/2016
Another very good cross country skiing holiday here during February with good snow conditions. Steve's expertise and his skill in organising a group with varying abilities is amazing - a very enjoyable week.
By Ms Bronger on 06/04/2016
Fun. We enjoyed our visit to Portugal.
By Pro Beevers on 06/04/2016
Great.......good walking , excellent notes and maps , good weather and good support. Requests for extra historical information promptly supplied by Ludmilla. Wonderful flowers, butterflies and birds, ! Food was excellent both in hotels and in the towns and Ludmilla advised us about local perceves speciality...and how to eat them. A good variety of places to eat.
Only suggestion is handrail or handrope in Pedralva cottage ( long flight of thirteen stone steps down to loo.....)
Wonder if L and T might keep a reference book of Flowers and Birds of Portugal in the van they could lend out... or we could consult?
By Mr Beal on 06/04/2016
Our third holiday with Headwater came up to usual high standards. Our representative Ludmilla was excellent and efficient. Although we had no problems we were confident that, had there been, she would have dealt with them promptly. We particularly enjoyed the delightful village at Pedralva - something out of the ordinary.
By Mr Pontin on 06/04/2016
We enjoyed our holiday despite unseasonal weather. We were not prepared for narrow roads and tortuous bends when driving, especially with the steep gutters on the insides of the roads. However, we managed to stay out of trouble! We learned that the islanders are hardier souls than we because many restaurants kept their doors flung wide while people were dining. Take warm fleeces with you for dining out!
The Melva Suites Hotel was another cold experience where the dining room had no heating and our room had only a portable oil filled radiator to keep us warm.
I would thoroughly recommend Las Tirajanos Hotel though because it was very comfortable, had a bath as well as a shower (very necessary after a long hike in the rain!), wonderful views and private terraces.
By Mrs Kenward on 06/04/2016
Excellent group holiday with good accommodation and very well organised. Wine included was good.
Varied program & walking harder than expected for one boot but lovely. Walking guide lovely & encouraging!
By Dr Nesbitt on 05/04/2016
Well organised trip,excellent food, rural location, plenty of opportunities for independent exploration as well as guided activities
By Mrs Mitchell on 04/04/2016
We had a very good holiday, the hotels were ideal and well located. We had no contact with any Headwater representative in Tenerife. Before the holiday your staff were concerned about oldies like us tackling the walks in Tenerife and did their best to put us off instead of helping us find a solution locally.
Dear Mrs Mitchell,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire. It was lovely to read you had an enjoyable holiday overall. We were however sorry to read you did not receive your welcome brief. As highlighted in your holiday information booklet, due to the logistics of this holiday, we do not have a dedicated Headwater rep based in Tenerife, although, we do provide an in person welcome brief on arrival and offer 24/7 emergency assistance should this be required. However, due to the varying times our customers arrive, we ask that you contact your rep pre travel to arrange a suitable time for this, we are sorry if this was not clear. In future, the rep will also try to contact our customers on the evening of arrival and where possible, will deliver the welcome brief over the phone as required.
Our sales team are experts on the holidays they sell, having tested them directly. When customers are seeking guidance on holiday suitability, our main goal is to ensure we provide thorough information to ensure our customers have the best holiday experience possible. We are sorry you do not feel this was delivered on this occasion.
In closing, we would like to thank you for choosing Headwater and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Kind regards, Headwater customer service team
By Mr Ball on 04/04/2016
Enjoyable notwithstanding some poor weather.
By Dr Loken on 30/03/2016
As usual with Headwater Holidays, we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves on this holiday. The locations were varied and interesting, the local guides did an excellent job, and the walking was very enjoyable.
By Mr Price on 30/03/2016
We loved our first experience of cross-country skiing. The ski guides were outstanding, and all staff at the hotel were most friendly and helpful. The food was superb, with a vast array of different dishes at every meal. The skiing area around Venabu is beautiful, with a huge variety of tracks to cater for beginners and intermediates - not being experts, we can't comment on suitability for them. We also loved the snow shoe expedition, and a couple of yoga sessions - both included in the holiday cost. In fact, everything that was needed was included in the price, and it would have been possible to have a good holiday wiothout spending any money locally. All in all, a great holiday.
By Mrs Turnbull on 30/03/2016
We had a great time. The skiing was excellent and we particularly enjoyed the guided ski tours which took us to different areas every day. We loved the walk on snowshoes to the waterfall too.
By Mr Clague on 30/03/2016
Thoroughly enjoyable, met a great bunch of people and skied in a magnificent location.
By Ms Hood on 30/03/2016
Friendly, well-organised and exactly as described.
By Ms Chandler on 30/03/2016
A unique holiday experience that fully met our expectations. Would highly recommend
By Mrs Lamb on 29/03/2016
This was our first guided walk, after many years of self guided holidays. We enjoyed the relaxation which came from not having to worry about anything at any time.Our guide Tiago was expert at assessing the capabilities and personalities of the group. We were able to go at our own pace, taking as much time as anyone needed to appreciate the wild flowers, birds and scenery. His passion for his country was inspirational and educational.
By Mr Moore on 29/03/2016
Excellent for seeing wildlife. Local guide Erika and driver Rono greatly enhanced this holiday with their expertise and knowledge- a lucky combination as Rono was a wildlife enthusiast himself. Some of the walks were not '2 boots' however heat especially during the latter part of the holiday dictated length of walks. Most of the hotels were very good/excellent and those which were not of the same standard compensated by location. Excellent boat trip and night walk which were highlights.
By Mrs Telford on 29/03/2016
Wonderful experience. Excellent location , great tuition great guides
By Mrs Wallace on 29/03/2016
Really enjoyed holiday in Bermuda. Beautiful island. Excellent walks. It is an EXPENSIVE destination, and therefore (for us) Special, But we don't regard Coco Reef as meeting 'special'. Fabulous location, but it's a bit tired, could do with freshening up, and no apparent sign of management involvement- maybe that's the Bermudian way? Furthermore its close to a Bermuda College, and during our stay a group of students were also resident, who although decent kids, kept different hours to us, and on 2 occasions kept us awake into the early hours. I don't think hotel management is doing itself any favours by mixing them with holidaying guests.
Restaurant food excellent, but menu needs regular update, a bit 'samey'after a week.
Dear Mrs Wallace,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday feedback and for your constructive comments. It was great to see you enjoyed your holiday overall. We were however sorry to read there were areas within the hotel that did not meet with your expectations. Firstly, we can advise there is a new Hotel Manager in place; she has already made noticeable improvements to the feel of the hotel and is keen to work with us to ensure our customers have a great holiday. The latest customer feedback is positive and a good reflection of the improvements she is making.
In closing, we would like to thank you for choosing Headwater and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mr Kershaw on 29/03/2016
Excellent first holiday with Headwater. Nothing was too much trouble. They even arranged for me to see England win the Grand Slam on TV in Pedralva!
Walks were beautiful and the guides were easy to follow.
By Mr Siddons on 24/03/2016
The varied microclimates of Gran Caneria provided a range of varied interesting walks. Away from the tourist venues on the coast the island provides a great venue for walking. The network of paths was great and mainly in excellent condition which was an eye opener. Generally use is low so you get lots of space to yourself, great views and opportunity to enjoy the island.
By Mr Sargent on 23/03/2016
Gozo was an enjoyable destination but rather limited for a seven day visit in comparison to some of your other holidays.
By Mrs Monk on 23/03/2016
very well organised. Routes for walking and cycling ensured that all the items of interest were covered on this small island. Wonderful hotels.
By Mr Pattison on 23/03/2016
Another great guided walking holiday, despite unseasonable weather, Very varied and interesting walks, good hotels, and good food and wine. Javier dealt very well with the challenges presented by an unwell fellow traveller, and the changes forced on us by the weather. He judged our capabilities well in arranging a substitute walk which we felt was the best of the holiday.
By Ms Ringer on 23/03/2016
This was a very well planned, smoothly run holiday. All our connections/transfers/taxis operated like clockwork. We were very well catered for and the Finca
had everything we needed for an extremely rewarding and relaxing holiday. Our guide, Nick, was very attentive and inclusive and happy to impart his
knowledge of the area. We loved the challenge of walking in the morning and then plenty of time in the afternoon to chill around the beautiful grounds of the Finca - lovingly developed over the years by our hosts Sue and Gordon. All the staff were very accommodating and friendly. We couldn't have asked for more.
Thank you everyone involved.
By Ms Cazalet on 22/03/2016
Enjoyable. Very good location (as long as lots of snow). Very good guide, learnt a lot and all in group improved a great deal by end of week. Mini bus a complete bonus. Small groups. Distance from airport to location less than an hour.
By Mrs Spencer on 22/03/2016
Casa Carascal was dark, oppressive and the time we were there, cold. Heaters and extra blankets were happily supplied, the fire was lit 1 hr before dinner. Not enough seating for number of guests indoors. Outside area totally enclosed by walls. Neither conducive to socialising before or after meals.
Could do with updating re paint in rooms and new bed covers but they were I guess, in tradition with the building.
I acknowledge that mountains demand respect and health and safety rules demand acknowledgement but felt Sue was a little over enthusiastic! In her approach. Prefer to make my own judgement re use of poles and my walking style over rough scrambles. She was however helpful to those who had difficulty.
At dinner, it would have been good to have been offered tea or coffee at the end of the meal, it doesn't take long to arrange. It was grudgingly granted when asked for on the last night!
Wifi would have been appreciated.
Excellent food! Good portion sizes. Good wine.
By Mr Wall on 21/03/2016
Excellent Rep in Marita and driver in Diego.It was nice to have the same driver all the time. Bikes were excellent, much better than the ones we had in the Asturias holiday earlier in the year when half the gears slipped. Every hotel, except in Cadiz gave us freshly brewed wonderful coffee for breakfast. We have never had that before in a Headwater holiday .Hotels marked down for food was not because there was anything wrong with it just that breakfast was very limited.eg at Medina di Sidonia just bread with those awful sachets of packaged jams and spreads. Comfort marked down for a couple of hotels because it was difficult to get a good night's sleep because of noise outside. At Medina Sidonia some sort of machinery going all night .The hotel in Cadiz has the best rooms at the front as they have large French doors and a little balcony over a pedestrianised street. It is actually fine until after midnight when the bars from the square down the road empty out and revellers pass by the hotel until the eary hours. We had an extra night so changed to a room at the back where there is only a small nonopening window over the door. Slept very well though so it was worth it.Very scenic area. I think grading is 2 plus not a 2.
By Mrs Rome on 21/03/2016
Overall very good, only minor improvements needed on mid day meals- not needed when travelling for prolonged time-could be more snack based when having a three course evening meal.
By Mis Ross on 21/03/2016
There is no better place to cross country ski than Venabu. Food, accommodation and quality of Guiding is excellent and Line, Robert, Wenche and the rest of the team maintain their standards year in year out. A unique place.
By Mrs Emmett on 21/03/2016
We found the first day hard: getting used to a new car, parking in a busy town to get lunch as suggested by the guide, an awkward and long drive to and from the start point and a very challenging walk. Rather too much for the first day. We suggest an easier itinerary for the first day would be preferable. We enjoyed a rest next day in the delightful little beach resort near the hotel. We enjoyed the transit day; an amazing drive and excellent FLAT walk near Mt Teide! The drive down into Garachico was exciting but we had got used to the car by then. Being in the centre of town was great. We found the walk in Teno Alto the best of all because of the diverse landscapes and exciting ridge walk. We had a second rest day with a pleasant and rewarding drive to Punto de Teno and some beach time. Finally we did most of the Masca Ridge en route to the airport. Unfortunately we were thwarted by a no entry sign on a gate not mentioned in the notes, but after wasting some time looking for a different route, clearly going through it was the best way forward. Overall this was a really good holiday, a few challenges but that is part of the fun. We were pleasantly surprised by how interesting and beautiful we found Tenerife to be, helped by the perfect weather we enjoyed.
By Mr Lloyd on 21/03/2016
Very different from our usual breaks, it was hard work but worth it. We would never have found these gems, and driving to them along the twisty mountain roads was half the adventure! The hotels were lovely, although quinta roja was a pain to get the bags and suitcases from the car, it was more than worth it.
By Ms Day on 21/03/2016
A very enjoyable holiday, that matched our expectations derived from the description of it in the brochure.
By Mr Daum on 21/03/2016
We had an excellent holiday and Gran Canaria has stunning and varied scenery. The walking was hard, at times, but very rewarding which made it all worthwhile.
The Hotels were very different in character but enabled you to visit and experience the contrast between the North and South of the island which are very different. The food in both was excellent and the warm welcome and hospitality we received at Melva Suites stood out.
By Mrs Simms on 21/03/2016
The Finca el Cerrillo is a wonderful place to stay in a beautiful location. We were extremely well looked after and the organisation was seamless. The walks were, as stated in the brochure, very gentle and leisurely. We would definitely consider returning especially If some more challenging walks were on offer.
By Mrs Quant on 16/03/2016
The hotel was excellent - beautiful surroundings and facilities. The food was varied and plentiful and you were spoilt for choice with local dishes included. The staff were very friendly and Gozo is a lovely unspoilt place where you felt safe to walk in the countryside and enjoy the wonderful scenery. It was a place to relax and unwind. The walking routes took you through a lot of different scenarios and gave options to visit sites of interest.
By Mr Butler on 16/03/2016
Nice hotel with friendly staff. Coastal walking was good. Some of the walks involved long stretches on road, and although there is not much traffic, this is quite tiring.
By Ms Stavert on 16/03/2016
Excellent holiday, Martin was a fantastic guide and knew the area really well. He adapted the walks to suit people's ability.
By Mr Hawley on 15/03/2016
Gozo is a great place to cycle; the people are very friendly, the food and wine great and there is much to see. You might like to include a side trip when you are going through Munxar on your way to Sannat. Take the road to the Sanat Cliffs as you leave Munxar. The road is new and rises gently for about a Km. Wonderful views of the Sanat Cliffs and across to Xlendi Bay. Retrace your way back to Munxar and continue on to Sannat and the Hotel Te Cenc. It is possible to walk from the cliffs directly to Sannat on a track, but we did not try cycling the tract.
By Mrs Bertels on 15/03/2016
Excellent holiday, well described in the brochure. However I thought the walks were a bit short so there was quite a lot of free time at the Finca. While the Finca is a really lovely place it was a little remote so if you wanted to go into the village/town there was a very steep walk down the ravine and back up the other side. I am sure later in the season the Finca is a lovely place to stay with swimming pool and lots of outside sitting areas but in early March it was a bit chilly. I wasn't too keen on the wine tasting in the morning before a walk. We seemed to spend a lot of time eating. We only had picnic lunches on 2 days which meant a lot of food was provided both at lunchtime and in the evening. I would have been happy to have longer walks and more picnic lunches.
By Mr Sinanoglou on 14/03/2016
Though the rating (one boot+) is accurate, I would have preferred longer walks on most days. The use of three locations in three very different settings is an attractive feature as is the superb seafood. The village of Pedralva is an unusual and well-chosen base from which to explore Portugal's west coast. The use of a Portuguese partner organization (A to Z Adventures) and local guides works extremely well. This is an ideal holiday for those who enjoy half-day walks in a variety of landscapes covering a region that stretches from the river border with Spain in the east to the Atlantic beaches and sea cliffs in the west. The guides are well-informed and very attentive.
By Mr Harris on 14/03/2016
A good strenuous holiday for an elderly single traveller. The guides and the other travellers were good organisers and excellent companions. No complaints.
By Mrs Smith on 14/03/2016
A fantastic week learning to cross country ski. Our rep, Steve, made it all completely effortless - getting us to and from the resort, teaching us how to ski, making sure we were always well-fed and watered and ensuring we got to the best snow every day - could not fault it.
By Ms Barnwell on 09/03/2016
This was my fifth visit to Leutasch to enjoy cross country ski ing. Steve, the Headwater representative, is very professional, friendly and excellent at assessing the skill levels of individuals and ensuring that the day's activities are planned to meet all needs. Thoroughly recommend this holiday.
By Ms Elsden on 09/03/2016
The Leutasch Valley is a brilliant base for xc skiing - and Hotel Xander in Kirchplatzl, enabled skiing almost direct from the door. Steve our guide and mentor was brilliant in his teaching and giving help and advice and managed always to pop up just at the right place if we ever had a query. (Haven't a clue how he always achieved that - although he knows the area so well and is a much better map reader than I!) The hotel is lovely and quiet, although the bulk and volume of food was enough to sink a battleship. And the staff could have done with a crash course at a charm school to learn to smile a little more! Shame there was no lounge area to enable you to chill out in, read a book or have a cuppa - I generally went back to my room after supper on account of this and if you're on your own, this did make it a little flat. You don't always want to hang out in the bar. And since there were no local facilities to visit without a 30 min yomp, you did need a good supply of books and your room fridge well stocked! Go for the Stempel stamp collecting system - gives a real target to clock up the km!
By Dr MacMillan on 09/03/2016
Excellent area for xc skiing, and hotel, equipment, staff also excellent
By Mrs Goodfellow on 09/03/2016
This holiday delivered exactly what it said on the box- fantastic, extensive, well maintained ski-ing area, a friendly sports hotel, likeminded guests, great hospitality, superb ski instructors and guides.
Don't go if you want a modern, five start hotel, but do consider it if you love XC skiing or want to try it for the first time.
By Mr McNab on 09/03/2016
Gozo is a small island but packed with interest. We loved the Hotel Ta Cenc, its architecture, location, friendly service and very good food. The walks were excellent and took us from quiet villages to fantastic coastlines through terraced valleys. It was sunny and mild and just what we needed after a very wet and very windy winter..
By Ms Montbazet on 04/03/2016
It was a magical week. The location of the hotel and it's facilities was perfect. I really appreciated the welcoming and informal atmosphere.
Our cross-country skiing adventure was very versatile. We were faced with different challenges every day.
Our instructor and guide was always on hand to help and encourage us. He filled us in on local historical and geographical facts and his sense of humour and vivid anecdotes made for a very entertaining week.
The beautiful winter landscape made my dream come true!
By Mrs Morgan on 04/03/2016
Brilliant holiday thanks to Steve who made sure we were all really well looked after, no matter what our abilities or fitness. I definitely recommend this beginners week for anyone venturing into cross-country skiing for the first time. The itinerary was flexible, enabling Steve to select the location according to the weather conditions & our abilities. Had it not been for Steve, I suspect we would have been going round & round the local loipe and would have missed out on much of this beautiful area. We had absolute confidence in his judgement of what we could safely tackle. He was able to push us just beyond our comfort zone, enabling us to progress further than we would have done with a few 2 hour sessions in ski school. Guests from another company were clearly envious of our experience & may well be future clients of Headwater. The hotel was very comfortable & had a great wellness centre - as long as you don't mind doing saunas the European way. The food was plentiful & mostly very good. The service was variable but amiable.
By Mr Ferdenzi on 04/03/2016
We would recommend a cross-country ski holiday at this friendly. laid-back resort. The area was lovely and it felt so peaceful because we had it all to ourselves!.The food was bountiful, imaginative and always of high quality. The staff were helpful and leaving the resort felt like leaving friends. The tuition was excellent, the ski tours good and varied. The wireless was reliable. The rooms, though small, were adequate for a week. It was useful to have a drying room for damp clothing and the saunas were good and well-used. The transfers to and from the (Oslo) airport were good and reliable.
By Mis Kerridge on 04/03/2016
Amazing trip to get away from everyday life, relax and enjoy the mountains. Richard was a brilliant guide and teacher. Loved the snow shoeing and husky dogs too. Food was superb and never ending...fantastic. Can't wait to go again
By Mrs Watkinson on 04/03/2016
Our cycling holiday was just the BEST! I am a non-cycling person, afraid in traffic, and not especially into sport and fitness. My husband is Mr Fit, and cycles quite a bit. This holiday was so much fun for both of us. Well within my capabilities, and although not very demanding, the cycling was enough to keep my husband happy. Can't wait to book another Headwater holiday.
By Mrs Auger on 04/03/2016
The walks were varied and well within our ability, although we appreciated having a day off on the fourth day. The guides (Andreas and Javier) were very knowledgeable about the flora and fauna, geology and history of the island, which added enormously to our enjoyment. We couldn't fault the hotel (San Roque), and especially liked having a Jacuzzi bath to revive our muscles each evening, before dinner. The chef produced delicious and varied meals both on the set menu and the vegetarian alternative.
By Mrs Merry on 04/03/2016
This was our first Headwater holiday & we were impressed. The hotel is a real gem with impeccable service & wonderful food. Dietary requirements were known about by both hotel staff & our guides. Both guides were helpful & knowledgeable about the locality, flora, fauna etc. They also provided great picnic lunches. The idea to go to a local market one day to choose picnic items was a good one.
We had not visited Tenerife previously & being situated in the quiet town of Garachico was lovely. There was plenty to occupy us there on the free day. All in all this was a splendid holiday, the walks varied & interesting. We were only a small group, 2 couples only but we seemed to gel which is always a bonus. We really have no criticism to make. Wonderful & we'll book with Headwater again.
By Dr Harris on 04/03/2016
A holiday in which you get away from the crowds and experience the country intimately, complemented by good food & accomodation
By Dr Holloway on 04/03/2016
We had an enjoyable walking experience in Gran Canaria and in general the walk instructions were excellent although there were some mistakes that were mostly corrected by the local guide at an initial meeting on arrival. It is worth asking as many searching questions from the local guide at this point.
By Mr Bumfrey on 04/03/2016
A very scenic island with lots of walking opportunities, some of which can be quite challenging. Friendly and comfortable hotels.
By Mrs Mendoza on 04/03/2016
This was the second Headwater holiday I have been on which was guided by Javier. He is a fantastic guide and so knowledgeable. As well as walking he showed us lots of flora and fauna and lots of other interesting things.
All the walks were very interesting and the views were great It was good that we stayed at two hotels, both very interesting.
By Mrs Gatward on 04/03/2016
The hotels, our guide Javier and the fellow-travellers were all excellent - unfortunately the weather wasn't as good as I'd hoped but nothing can be done about that. I think Javier realised when he had to re-arrange our final walk (due to snow) that the alternative was a bit difficult for me - but I got there! I have to say everyone else thought it was wonderful!
By Mr Wildsmith on 03/03/2016
Excellent varied walking on the coast and on the Levada system. Good variety of hotel.
By Mrs Davies on 25/02/2016
We love the Leutasch for skiing holidays for many reasons, notably:
- The fact that the hotel provides a friendly welcome and is situated right in the heart of the extensive ski area (catering for all levels of ability),
- The transfer from the Airport is quick,
- The accommodation and food are good
- Above all - Steve's guiding and extensive knowledge of the area adds tremendous value.
- This why we have returned for the last 5 years and why we are planning to return.
By Mr Elworthy on 25/02/2016
great holiday in a very beautiful place. Hotel meet all expectations with wonderful views, food and staff. Steve took great care of us all adapting to our ever changing needs and helping to accommodate a party with very different needs and abilities. it all added up to a fantastic holiday. thank you to all who made it happen.
By Mr Shore on 25/02/2016
The weather throughout the Alps this season has been too warm, so as a result the snow in the cross-country areas is fairly poor. At Kandersteg some of the more interesting valley skiing was closed. However Kandersteg has the advantage that - in addition to the valley skiing - there is some high (2000 m) cross-country skiing at Sunnbuel which is accessed by cable car. When we skied at Sunnbuel it was very quiet and we felt like polar explorers! The valley skiing is less extensive than at Leutasch or Dobbiaco, but this also means it attracts fewer people, meaning the trails are quiet. The hotel Alfa Soleil is old-fashioned, in keeping with the whole village which is sleepy and - like the trails - quiet. Although it is on the 'main' road, there is hardly any traffic and it is very quiet at night. The food at Alfa Soleil was good, including the vegetarian options. The restaurant has a good selection of local wines. The service was excellent - in the restaurant, at reception and also the housekeeping. In fact the housekeepers were more thorough than I can remember at any other hotel - even tidying disorganised pairs of shoes for us! The owner, Peter, provided a warm welcome and was available throughout the week for help and advice. We paid a supplement for a junior suite and I'm glad we did - the basic rooms are small.
By Mrs Gillott on 25/02/2016
The guides were fantastic, food amazing. Unfortunately xc skiing is not for us.
By Mrs George on 25/02/2016
Stunning scenery and great walking destination. Great climate for Jan/Feb.
By Mr Worsley on 25/02/2016
Met our expectations exactly- no hitches throughout.
By Mr Mattingly on 25/02/2016
Excellent hotel & guides. One or two walks do require a head for heights (this was pointed out in brochure).
By Mr Pomfrett on 25/02/2016
Probably the best walking holiday we have had in Europe. A decent walk each day but you could do other things if you wanted. 3 of the five walks were really beautiful and the other two were good. Accommodation was fine and the reps were helpful. The notes were clear and easy to follow.
By Mrs Woodruff on 25/02/2016
Well organised holiday with an excellent local guide.
By Mr Rayner on 25/02/2016
An excellent holiday with an exceptional guide (Javier) who was passionate about the geology, geography, and natural history of the island of La Palma.
The walks were well chosen and we saw different aspects of the island. He was adaptable - when the temperature dropped to 5C with a wind speed of 34kph he decided to forego the high altitude ridge walk for one further down the mountain. He took us to an interesting selection of restaurants so that we could experience local cuisine. And he was a good and careful driver and had a fine sense of humour.
By Mr Ezra on 24/02/2016
Steve,the resort host, couldn't do enough for the group during the week, always making sure that clients had skiing applicable to their abilities (from beginners to seasoned skiers). Even on his day off, he showed up at the hotel in the morning and ferried 4 of us to another village, rather than have us catch the bus. The skiing was good and we were blessed with good conditions. Trail preparation was also good, with only 2 tracks remaining closed all week. However, the area overstates how many kilometres of trails there actually are, counting shared classic and skating runs twice. The Xander is a pleasant, not overly large hotel with good, if sometimes busy, facilities. It is somewhat remote, being in a small hamlet, but because of this, it is very quiet, with no nighttime noise. The normal rooms were huge, bordering on suite size. The food was good and plentiful (afternoon 'tea' was a real bonus) with most courses being buffet style. It is as well to have some supplies in your room if like a night cap, as the bar closes if there are no customers around (we returned from a post dinner walk to find the bar closed by 9:30). With the blessedly short transfer from Innsbruck (less than an hour) and the early flight, our room was not ready on arrival, as were others. Given that this is the time that Headwater clients always arrive, I would have thought that the hotel would make sure that clients were ready to be shown their rooms upon arrival.
By Mr Hudson on 24/02/2016
A very good holiday with an excellent rep. We expect to return next year.
By Ms Smith on 24/02/2016
This was our first time cross-country skiing and we are totally hooked. This is due to the beautiful location; perfect snow, and the excellent instruction that we received.
By Mrs Harper on 24/02/2016
A great experience with a young enthusiastic guide. The only disappointment was the weather.
By Ms Brown on 24/02/2016
Perfect combination of varied and scenic walking, great hospitality, delicious food and comfortable accommodation.
By Mr Kell on 24/02/2016
We very much enjoyed our week in Gran Canaria. The walks we did provided panoramic views of the island and fortunately all the days we walked we were blessed with excellent weather and visibility. We opted out of the last walk on the Sunday because of poor weather conditions which seemed to affect most of the island. On balance we found the walks more strenuous than 2 Boot might have suggested, especially on some of the steep descents. We were quite stiff after 3 consecutive days but happily recovered quite quickly during the day's transfer. We do a lot of walking and exercise regularly at the gym so would stress the need for physical fitness to do these walks. See comments below about the Hotels. San Bartolome is so central really that on balance all of the walks can be accessed from there though it might involve a little more mountain driving which some folk may not appreciate.
By Ms Dutton on 22/02/2016
We appreciated the flexibility Steve offered in our itinerary. Great area for xcroutry sking with good variety of terrain and routes. Would have been happy with more rustic accommodation with log fire in a communal area and less food would have been fine!
By Mrs Best on 22/02/2016
Kandersteg is a picturesque spot. Unfortunately the snow was not as good as in previous years in Austria and Italy. It meant that I didn't feel that I had done as much skiing as in the past, however I still had a lovely holiday. The ski instructor --Stephan-- was excellent. Good spacious twin room at this hotel for single occupancy. That is good when they feel the need to charge a single supplement.
By Mr Munro on 22/02/2016
Kandersteg and its mountain setting made for a glorious winter holiday offering ua a mix of cross country skiing and winter walking in the high Alps. All in the knowledge you are returning to a very comfortable hotel with delicious meals and a lovely welcome always
By Mr Tomkinson on 22/02/2016
I decided to take a cross-country skiing holiday at the Venabu Fjellhotel after reading the recommendations left by previous visitors on the Headwater website which I fully endorse. The hotel was comfortable with welcoming, friendly staff. The food was wonderful & plentiful - 5 course lunches & dinners with many different dishes to choose from.
The ski tour leaders were excellent.They gave advice on skiing techniques and also explained features of the landscape, plus details of the local flora & fauna which added to the enjoyment of the tours.
I stayed in a single room in the East Wing which was adequate if a tad on the small side. Larger rooms are available in the West Wing for a supplement. Tea & coffee was not provided in the room, but is available in the public rooms at no extra charge.
I met several guests in the hotel who had stayed there before & one person was on his fifteenth visit! I, also, hope to make a return trip to this hotel at some point as it is an excellent centre for cross-country skiing with many kilometres of waymarked loipen from the hotel.
The only improvement I can think of is that it would nice if the hotel had a swimming pool!
By Mr Cross on 22/02/2016
I thoroughly enjoyed this Headwater holiday, of which I have had many. Luckily our small group all got on well with each other - important for a guided holiday. You can rely on the excellent guide (Javier) and the excellent hotel San Roque, and Garachico is a pretty little coastal town. What you cannot rely on - in mid-February in Tenerife - is good weather for walking every day. Cloud and/or rain, plus high winds, are a real risk. Javier was intelligent and flexible, taking us back to the 'always dry' Teide National Park more than once, after we got a soaking on one lower altitude walk.Would go walking again - probably to another of the Canary Islands - but in April/May, not February.
By Mrs Underwood on 22/02/2016
Fabulous weeks walking holiday our guide Javier was brilliant each day was a fun filled day, great walking routes and with an extremely pleasant knowledgeable young guide.
Would recommend 100%
By Mr Summers on 17/02/2016
The resort was small with limited skiing available (we accept the weather was a factor but the skiing was limited even with good snow). The hotel staff were exemplary but our bedroom was small and tired. The resort lacked atmosphere and energy. Without the cake shop/cafe it would have been a disaster. Fortunately we were with friends we had met on an earlier Headwater holiday! Having to pay for the sauna and for tap water at table was an irritation!
By Mrs McKown on 17/02/2016
This beginners week in Venabu was in my opinion the perfect introduction to the delights of cross country skiing .
The all inclusive package insulates you from the normal expense of a holiday in Norway in this snow assured area .
The hotel was charming all the staff friendly and we wanted for nothing during our stay .
The room was warm and comfortable , the food plentiful with all tastes catered for and truly excellent .
Our ski instructors,Richard and Siobhan were great .
There wasn't a direct flight from Manchester to Oslo but that is the only downside to this holiday !
I rarely return to the same location for holidays but I can see why people do for this holiday and I think it will be very difficult to
match this experience and overall value , so I might well be back again !
By Dr Barton on 17/02/2016
A really good experience - excellent organisation, beautifully located hotel with comfortable accommodation and lots of really good food, great skiing tuition tailored to our needs, huge choice of ski routes and other options such as snow shoe trekking - and other guests in the hotel were really friendly and good company. Hard to beat!
By Mr Huddlestone on 17/02/2016
An enjoyable winter break in milder weather with an interesting variety of wal