Customer reviews: Self guided walking holidays
Here at Headwater we thrive on feedback from our customers. It's the only way we can continue to develop and, where necessary, improve our services and ensure our walking holidays continue to be the best they can be.
Eveyone who travels with Headwater will be emailed a link to our post-holiday questionnaire where they can give us an honest assesment of all aspects of their walking holiday - everything from how quickly we answer the phone to how clean the hotels were - plus, of course, an overall rating and comments about their walking holiday.
Any feedback collected is posted straight to our website - totally unedited. So, for the real tales, twists and turns of our holidays, look no further than the reviews from our previous travellers.
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 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 Mr Armstrong on 23/09/2016
See the box above.
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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 Mrs Harrison on 30/08/2016
a great holiday with a good balance between activity and rest and lots to occupy on rest days
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 Mrs Snape on 23/08/2016
It was an excelent holiday but thought it rated a higher difficulty than one boot as it was challenging in places.
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 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 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 Mr Burridge on 23/08/2016
A very enjoyable active holiday with wonderful scenery.
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 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 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 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 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 Mrs Monk on 17/08/2016
A well structured, walking holiday on the Brittany coastline .
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 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 Bryant on 17/08/2016
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.
By Dr Paget on 17/08/2016
High Alps walking tour is strenuous but rewarding. Certainly challenging in places. Well worth experiencing.
By Mr Beresford on 17/08/2016
We went in early June and many places in Davos and Klosters are closed - it is not a 'bustling city' at this time of year. A number of cable cars and bus services are not running at this time, so some walks are not possible, or a long climb up is required. The hotel was running on minimum staff levels for the first few days, although the staff were very friendly and helpful, and the accommodation was excellent. The half board dinners were generally disappointing and the restaurant did not meet 'the excellent reputation for its cuisine'. We had the 'a la carte' menu one night and this was far superior. Overall the walks and scenery were excellent which made up for a few disappointments in other areas.
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 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 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 Mr Spackman on 16/08/2016
Our Headwater walking holiday contained the perfect mixture of beautiful and challenging walks with comfortable hotels and delicious French meals. We felt we were able to escape from the well-trodden tourist trails and really explore the countryside, knowing our luggage was being taken care of and there would be a crystal-clear swimming pool awaiting us at the end of another hot day.
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 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 Brook on 08/08/2016
Whilst the hotels on the walking trip were very good they were generally a lot larger and less traditional than places we had stayed in before when travelling with Headwater. The exception was the hotel at Bodensdorf which had far more character.
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 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 Mrs Lawrence on 25/07/2016
Thank you Headwater - A superb well organised walking holiday in a stunningly beautiful part of Austria.
All the hotels were of a consistanly high standard & our reps Jill & Colin were always mmediately available to answer any questions & to suggest alternative routes when the weather was against us.
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 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 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 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 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 Mr Smith on 20/07/2016
Stunning countryside and food. Best reps we've ever had.
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 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 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 Parker on 15/07/2016
Tough walk but very stimulating
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 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 Mrs Currie on 13/07/2016
Good walking with fantastic scenery.
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 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 Mrs Gardner on 06/07/2016
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 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 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 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 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 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 Makin on 27/06/2016
GOOD HOTELS AND GOOD WALKS, THE WALKS WERE HARDER THAN WE HAD BEEN ON BEFORE, VERY WET GROUND MADE WALKING VERY DIFFICULT
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 Dr Sterland on 27/06/2016
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 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 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 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 Kingsford on 16/06/2016
Varied walking in superb countryside through pine forests, cherry orchards, lavender fields and vineyards, all of which which gave us a wonderful experience of Provence in all its glory
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 Mrs Farebrother on 15/06/2016
The Salzkammergut is a fabulous area to explore and this is just a taster for future visits. As with all grading on the walking holidays, this one varies between 1 boot and 2 boots depending on the gradient and conditions, so 1+ is very much an average. Some of the steep descents when wet are very tricky underfoot. Our favourite hotels were the Bergrose and the Hollweger, for their location and warmth of welcome/comfort.
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 Wildsmith on 14/06/2016
Interesting area; good length of walks; very helpful rep.
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 Mrs Wallis on 14/06/2016
Very pleased with holiday and organisation -excellent introduction to Slovenia
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 Dr Rayner on 13/06/2016
We had just the right balance for us of challenging walks with wonderful views, days off, options for wet weather and guaranteed luxury accommodation. We also made friends with two other people who were doing the same routes as we were. Instructions sent in advance and on arrival were helpful, and we knew that we could call on our holiday reps to help us in any emergency. We were able to learn about Austrian culture and food without feeling that we had given up all of our home comforts.
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 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 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 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 you as a loyal customer dearly and look forward to welcoming you on your next holiday in the future.
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 Mr Abrahams on 07/06/2016
Excellent concept well executed
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 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 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 Lewis on 07/06/2016
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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 Dr Smith on 03/06/2016
Very poor because of the Herdade do Touril experience.
By Mrs Alleston on 03/06/2016
Well organised in principle with well chosen walks, but local knowledge was disappointing and led to some problems. The hotels were all fine with good to very good breakfasts and mostly in a good location. Bearing in mind that this was the first departure of the season, the area was already very crowded and the lower path from Vernazza to Monterosso was unbearable, verging on dangerous because of overcrowding. They are talking about limiting numbers: the sooner the better! Bear in mind that you need dry weather to walk safely on many of the paths, which can be steep and rocky.
Headwater were very helpful in organising a transfer to Camogli where we privately extended the trip after Portovenere.
By Ms Tonge on 03/06/2016
We thoroughly enjoyed this holiday and the walking routes .Each place we stayed had a different character and the hotels were generally of a high standard-particularly Hotel Due Mari in Sestri Levante. We also enjoyed the included restaurant meals on the terrace at The Sporting Hotel. As the whole area is up market it is not cheap eating out on all the other days.
The walking was varied and very scenic.We were lucky with very good weather throughout-however we would echo previous comments about the steepness of some of the paths and slipperiness in wet weather. The walking route directions were very good and detailed. We would advise in the Cinque Terre park starting as early as possible and going as high as possible to avoid other walkers as it is very busy there!
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 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 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 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 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 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 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 Mr Floyd on 11/05/2016
VERY well organised. HIGHLY efficient. Excellent hotels. Hard to beat
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 Ms Cozort on 09/05/2016
Beautiful region, fantastic scenery, good walks but not too strenuous.
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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 Mrs Simpson on 18/04/2016
Very comfortable accommodation. Good walking. Quiet. Excellent bus service from outside hotel to all parts of island. Suited us well for relaxing walking break.
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 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 Ms Hood on 30/03/2016
Friendly, well-organised and exactly as described.
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.
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 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 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 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 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 Mr Wildsmith on 03/03/2016
Excellent varied walking on the coast and on the Levada system. Good variety of hotel.
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 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 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 Mr Huddlestone on 17/02/2016
An enjoyable winter break in milder weather with an interesting variety of walking, without being too challenging! The hotels provided excellent facilities for rest and recuperation with good dining and comfortable surroundings and some stunning views in places.
By Ms Swiecicka on 17/02/2016
Can't really comment on standard of accommodation normally offered by Headwater as we upgraded wherever possible. At Costa D'Oiro (where we paid for superior room) we were put in room 3016 (I think) which, we later realised, has to have been the worst of all the superior rooms in that building (ground floor, in the back left-hand corner of the building) - the bathroom facilities were modern but the room itself was very dark and cramped (had a 3rd bed in it so nowhere inside to sit or even to put our cases). The patio was dark & dingy and only got the sun for about an hour or so around breakfast time (which wasn't much use to us as the room was not 'ready' for us to go into until after 1pm). The superior rooms on the other side of the building (i.e. facing the small road) were much brighter and bigger but we were not given the option of changing. We wouldn't have minded a room at the back of the building had it been on the 1st floor level as this would have been much lighter but we very much got the impression that we were put in that room to make it easier for cleaning - i.e. all the rooms to be cleaned were together on the ground floor. The restaurant was closed in the evening so comment re food relates to breakfast only, which was good. I would not stay in this hotel again.
Dear Ms Swiecicka, Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday feedback, we were pleased to see you had an enjoyable holiday overall, however were sorry to read of your dissatisfaction with your room at Hotel Costa d ‘Oiro. We have discussed your comments with the Hotelier; he was also disappointed to receive your feedback and is sorry this issue was not resolved during your stay. This hotel is not one we normally use for our walking holiday, however we do use it on our cycling holiday and the overall feedback received is good. However, we do appreciate we cannot afford to let our standards slip, so will continue to monitor all feedback received and will work closely with our hotelier to ensure they are delivering the standard of accommodation our customers have come to expect. In closing, we would like to thank you for your constructive feedback and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future. Yours sincerely, Headwater customer service team
By Mr Booth on 29/01/2016
Both the guided and self guided parts of the holiday were excellent. We were taken to parts of Tenerife and Gran Canaria that were spectacularly beautiful, rugged and interesting.
By Mrs Riddaway on 28/01/2016
Hotel Las Tiranas is a very pleasant friendly place to stay with excellent faciities including a lovely swimming pool and wellness centre. The very extensive buffet breakfasts and lunches mean that it is possible to find plenty of food to please anyone's tastes. Lots of pleasant places both inside and out to sit and talk or just relax.
Hotel Melva Suites has a very minimalist design and is set in grounds covered mostly with small stones and few plants. It has no facilities except a restaurant but this was friendly and the food was good. Breakfast was very limited and cold and provided in the corner a huge hall. The whole experience would be much improved if breakfast was to be served in the restaurant.
By Mr Learmont on 22/01/2016
We stayed in two hotels, the Tirajanas and Melva. Our stay in the Tirajanas was very enjoyable; there were a couple of niggles (separate charge for wi fi and use of safe in room) but overall amenities excellent, service and food both good, walks from hotel great (albeit quite physically challenging). We did not think the Melva was a good choice for Headwater customers - it was a long distance from the walk start points; the atmosphere and location were bleak; the food slightly odd - an excellent quality evening restaurant (even though menu choices were odd e.g. scrambled eggs and artichokes, anchovies with a small tomato) offset by a really poor breakfast in main hall (warm water from a thermos for tea/coffee; no fresh bread etc.). The rooms were clean, spacious and well equipped but the exterior was like a car park and not appealing at all. We enjoyed our visit to Gran Canaria but were we to go again we would prefer to stay for the whole week in Tirajanas and steer clear of Melva.I trust this is helpful.
By Mr Jamieson on 19/01/2016
We did all the walks in the itinerary except the Las Casas de Afur as it promised to be simply a descent of 700m on difficult footing followed an unrelenting climb (or bus trip) back up. As reasonably fit 70s we coped with all the others, but considered most to be at the top end of Headwaters two boot category because of the generally rocky terrain and occasional need for a head for heights
We found the individual walk descriptions out-of-date. In several cases there had been welcome improvements such as better waymaking and resurfaced roads (the Chamorga walk). But on the Los Organos walk we had to retrace our steps after 4km as a key section of path has been closed on safety grounds since at least February 2015. Yet Headwater still included the walk in our package.
As all the walks are some distance from the hotels a lot of driving is involved, much on twisting mountain roads; we did 700km in seven days (including 60 minutes each way for the aborted Los Organos walk). Not a problem for us, but it may not be everyone's cup of tea.
While sun hat, sunscreen and water are rightly mentioned as essential, layers of clothing and gloves are equally important as most of the walks approach 1000m (2000m in the case on the Teide National Park). In the winter months it can be quite cold at those altitudes, especially on cloudy days.
As for hotels, the Finca Salamanca is adequate, but lacks atmosphere. The Quinta Roja in Garachico (a lovely town with traditional architecture) is very good and is close to a range of restaurants. We enjoyed the fish restaurant, Aristides, just cross the square. In neither hotel did the staff show much knowledge of, or interest in, the Headwater programme of walks.
Overall, the holiday was a great way to explore the far corners and roof of Tenerife, but the balance of the overall programme and the individual walk descriptions need more attention to detail by Headwater.
By Mrs Simms on 14/12/2015
Holiday was well organised by helpful staff. Flexibility on departure airport is a big plus.
By Mr Poole on 04/12/2015
Hidden Tuscany is in an interesting, quiet area. It is necessary to travel significant distances to get the best out of the holiday and the area, as is probably true of Western Europe in general, will be at its best in Spring/Early Summer.
By Mrs Farebrother on 04/12/2015
Cinque Terre walking can be quite tough. The distance that is given in the Notes does not really prepare unwary walkers for the ascent and descent to be expected for the day.We recommend that Headwater publishes the distance AND the metres of ascent/descent for each day and option. It adds considerably to the challenge/enjoyment, depending on your point of view! We were fine, others could be taken unawares by the climbing expected.
We loved the terrain and the experience. We were very fortunate with the fabulous weather for early October. In wet conditions, some of the paths would have been impassable and dangerous, so it is important to emphasise that the weather will have a big impact on the holiday experience in the Cinque Terre.
We were a bit shocked by the sheer number of tourists and walkers in the five Cinque Terre towns. Considering it was 'end of season' in early October, the towns were crammed with tourists and it was only on the remoter paths that we managed to shed them. Headwater should emphasise that, beautiful as it is, the Cinque Terre region is one of the most popular walking/tourist areas in the World and can get very crowded.
The walking notes were generally very good but the maps were truly awful. Not only did they not cover all the routes in the notes, we met other walkers who had far superior maps to ours. The maps by KOMPASS appeared to be some of the best. Our maps either didn't show some paths or didn't show them accurately in some instances. Elisa knows the territory like the back of her hand so we suspect she doesn't pay too much attention to maps! Whereas for us, we needed to be able to navigate with them AND the notes, and without her.
By Mis Heath on 03/12/2015
Memmo Baleeira was lovely to stay at and it would have been good to have stayed there longer. Mira Sagres was alright and Pedralva was very basic (food in evening was adequate but you had to be careful what you chose). Walking along coast and in wooded valleys was lovely but could be tedious inland (flat and featureless scrubland at times). Ludmilla was great and very helpful - we like her a lot!
By Mr Marsh on 27/11/2015
Bermuda is friendly, beautiful and relaxing. We followed all walks but one and wished we had had longer to do more (the walks didn't leave enough time for visiting museums etc). Coco Reef was a lovely place to stay.
By Ms Lang on 27/11/2015
It was a good holiday. Just too much rain.
By Mrs Chaplin on 18/11/2015
Thoroughly enjoyed our holiday, Tony and Ludmilla were very helpful, the route notes accurate and the walks were lovely especially the walk from Vila do Bispo to Sagres-the coastal views were fantastic! All the hotels were very welcoming, but we especially liked Pedralva it is a real gem and the food was great too! There was plenty of choice of restaurants on the days when we had bed and breakfast at the hotels and we found all to be very good value for money.
By Mr Schafer on 17/11/2015
We took our trip in late August. The trip was very well constructed and we thoroughly enjoyed the mix of hiking and exploring days as it gave us a chance to enjoy the beauty and culture of the areas we were visiting. This was our first self-guided Headwater trip (4th Headwater trip overall). The local reps Colin and Jill were very helpful, providing updated route notes and suggestions for things to see and do during our hiking and off days. The route notes were accurate and easy to follow. The hotels were all very nice and with the exception of the Hotel Bergrose, were all centrally located. ( The Bergrose was in a beautiful, quiet setting 20 mins out side of town.) It was very warm during our trip (~32 degrees) so we had to sleep with the windows open. The central location of the hotels made for rather noisy nights and we ended up sleeping with earplugs. The hotels and food were otherwise excellent across the board. This is a wonderful holiday.
By Mrs Hutchinson on 13/11/2015
First hotel was in a lovely location but we didn't get the basic cleaning and breakfast service we would expect. We weren't expecting luxury here but basic cleaning and services. Also nobody was available who spoke English for most of our stay here. Obviously in a rural area we shouldn't necessarily have expected this but it would have been very helpful.
By Mr Green on 09/11/2015
Good combination of interesting but not too taxing walks, four or five hours a day, and pleasant pampering by staying at good hotels with pools and saunas,(very important to soothe any aching muscles !) Local people that we encountered seemed uniformly friendly and helpful and the landscape, whether we were being driven or walking through it, was never less than fascinating and often simply amazing, a combination of peruvian highlands and alpine villages !
By Ms Spencer on 06/11/2015
we had a great time and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves though the level of the first walk (the longer route) seemed to be harder tan 2 boots especially given the temperature. In view of the steep ascents/descents on parts of this walk it might be helpful to suggest sticks as essential.
We spent 4 nights in total at the hotel in Spello and for 2 of those nights we were unhappy with one of the beds which was a sofa bed and not really suitable for an adult. We were very tired on our first night so put up with it but when we asked for this to be changed on our return there were no staff able to change the bedding until the following day. This wasn't satisfactory. Two of the nights we spent at this hotel were on wednesdays which meant we ate at a different restaurant; this may have been just as well as the menu(which was short) didn't alter on the 2 nights we ate there.
By Mr McKerchar on 03/11/2015
Hotel absolutely first rate - fantastic tranquil location; we were very well looked after; food was simple but good. Menorca delightfully quiet when we visited (October) but weather perfect for walking. Walks were straightforward if perhaps a trifle short. We skipped the town walks and added two other walks of our own that I would recommend
1. Santa Galdana to Saint Thomas via GR 223, returning along coastal path - just be aware that to leave Cala Trebaluger you need to use a cave passage.
2. Cala Tuqueta to Plagues de Son Saura (out & return via coastal path - we did not find the green route marked on the map but we did not spend much time looking).
By Mr Horsfall on 02/11/2015
We thought this was upper two boot level, but very enjoyable walking
By Dr Hodgson on 31/10/2015
A holiday in two parts ...the rural hills with lake, birds, flowers and superb hosts followed by clifftop walks, beaches,birds, Going in October we did have a bit of rain but this only stopped one day's walking and we were still able to fully enjoy this unspoilt part of Portugal.
By Mrs Shore on 31/10/2015
A really good trip.With a good blend of self directed walks and guided up Stromboli and Etna.
By Mrs Jones on 27/10/2015
Can't speak too highly of Sarah - Headwater is fortunate to have someone with such high standards, thoughtfulness and warm personality.. She was very attentive and concerned about a couple on the cycling holiday,one of whom had sustained an eye injury while cycling.
Villa Lusanna was particularly good in terms of welcome, food and friendliness.
Some years ago we did the walking in the Loire valley holiday. The standard of food, accomodation and route notes were much better in the Venetian Hills holiday. .
By Mr Wehl on 26/10/2015
Our Croatian walking holiday was a wonderful experience. The villages were picturesque and stunning in their location and ambience. The walks were through diverse terrain of natural beauty and the food was delicious. Highly enjoyable and thoroughly recommended by us both.
By Mrs Beddow on 26/10/2015
The travel arrangements were good. The information supplied for the walks and local places of interest was very good. The directions to the hotel were clear.
The hotel was in a lovely location and it was family run. It was very clean. There was no bar and no refreshment facilities in the form of a bar or restaurant available during the day, but if asked for specific items, staff would provide drinks and snacks and it was possible for guests to make their own hot drinks at any time.
The dinner menu was varied and the standard of food in the restaurant in the evening was excellent.
By Mrs Fairclough on 26/10/2015
Very enjoyable. Felt like we had seen and experienced the real Spain, not touristy and commercial. We speak no Spanish and very few people spoke English but we got by and all the meals were wonderful, trying different things. The walks were very good some more challenging than others. We did go wrong but never too badly. Not sure if the mistakes were due to vague directions or just misinterpretation of instructions (we easily go wrong in England!!)
By Mrs Jenkins on 23/10/2015
Overall an enjoyable experience, but our least favourite headwater holiday (our 5th). Why? Flights from Heathrow involved a very tight connection at Vienna which was from a different terminal and meant going through security there. Made the connection with less than 10 minutes to go before departure- very stressful! Hotels were a real mixture. Loved the Miklik hotel (fantastic staff and super room despite a few issues with a shortage of hot water for our very large bath) and Kranjska Gora - we would have happily stayed there all week. Room at the Hotel Jezero by the lake had a fantastic outlook but the shower had a cracked shower tray and no plug for the sink. Hotel Hvala - wonderful welcome and the room was huge but needs serious modernisation and new beds! Hotel Mangart - the fridge wasn't working (fixed the next day) and breakfast on the first morning was poor with disinterested member of staff. Much improved the following morning and got offered eggs and bacon (possibly by the manager). The transfers by M Tours were punctual and efficient- beware there was a strong smell of smoke in some, although none of the drivers smoked whilst we were travelling. We nearly missed the train connection as we were not told that we were travelling on a car transporter which was in the station some 25 minutes before departure time. We even asked the station master whilst the train was there... Luckily one of the men sitting in his car on the train shouted at us to get onboard realising we were with M tours This meant running about 80 metres with suitcases down the gravel track alongside the train to the one carriage where the conductor had to haul us up nearly 5 feet to get us and our luggage onboard as there was no platform!
Slovenia is lovely and the walking was of good 2 boots standard. Autumn was further advanced than in the UK and the weather was changeable so would advise going early September not at the end like we did. Considering Slovenia was very cheap, we thought the holiday was overpriced but presumably the number of transfers had a bearing on this.
By Mrs Griffiths-pear on 21/10/2015
A good holiday with great scenery and enjoyable walks. A notable absence of birds in the Zingaro Nature Reserve (October) but the vegetation was still very green, despite the heat .
By Mr Tonner on 20/10/2015
Transfers were seamless - friendly drivers and always on time. Good variety of locations and hotels. We feel that we saw most of the Amalfi and Sorrentine peninsular because of the walks organised for us. And probably saw a lot of places normally not seen. We were a little disappointed that we were the only Headwater clients that week but it was apparently at the end of the holiday season. The weather although warm was unpredictable at times and we had one very wet day on which we had to abandon our walk halfway and catch a bus to our next hotel. The food arranged was varied and delicious. Sorrento was an ideal base from which to visit Capri and explore the historical sites of Pompeii and Herculaneum amongst others. We had an and extra couple of days at the Grand Capidimonte hotel which was in a good location to walk down to Sorrento and was the perfect place to end our holiday, it was excellent in every respect.
By Mrs Steggles on 20/10/2015
Overall we enjoyed our holiday - it was an extremely peaceful location and the service at the hotel was always excellent and friendly. We have a few suggestions for improvements, mostly on the food side. Breakfasts were a bit disappointing - few healthy options available and limited choice. The evening meals in the restaurant were of a high standard and again the service was excellent. The only slight downside from our perspective was that we thought there might have been a different fixed (market) menu every day instead of a standard restaurant menu which offered only limited daily specials (and not every day). Over the course of a week we found ourselves struggling for choice a bit and often had to repeat meals or ask the chef to omit certain ingredients (which they were happy to accommodate) to find something we liked. This is really only an issue if you are staying for a longer period or are less fond of a what was a predominantly meat-based menu.
I would also highly recommend upgrading the hire car as we had a very basic Fiat Panda with an underpowered engine which struggled on the numerous hills and hairpin bends - definitely worth considering an upgrade.
By Mrs Moseley on 20/10/2015
Lovely area, very peaceful with enjoyable walking. Great to visit Padua on our rest day. Added on a day and night in Venice at the end of the holiday which would highly recommend.
By Ms Olson-williams on 16/10/2015
By Mr Sanderson on 16/10/2015
Most enjoyable holiday which was well organised. Hotels were just right for our requirements. Our minibus driver Nicola was superb - always on time and nothing was too much trouble.
Temperatures up to 39 degrees were a bit of a shock in mid September which meant some of the walks were very testing when there was a lack of shade.
By Mr Elcome on 16/10/2015
Although Ta Cenc is a lovely hotel with a great location it cannot be really classified as a typical 5 star/top of the range hotel; the bedrooms/bathrooms are rather dated, there are not staff always available to help/advise. We had to search for things rather than them being provided. Hotel staff were friendly, the food particularly the breakfast buffet and in the restaurant (il Cantra) at the beach were excellent. Having stayed in a number of 5 star hotels this isn't one. However, we really enjoyed ourselves at the hotel and had no complaints.
Gozo was a lovely surprise (the lovely weather helped!) with pretty villages, friendly people and a very efficient bus service. However, overall there is too much walking on roads; we recommend that people use the buses to avoid some of this (a 15 euro pass for 12 trips was great value and we could use it on Malta) There are also additional walks we were told about including one of the best walks we did from Gharb up to the coast and then along to Marsalforn which is part of the coastal walk; there is a brochure called the Gozo coastal walk - perhaps George could have told us a bit more about where to get bus passes, other walks and local information and a bit more about the hotel. Whilst pleasant we had the impression he has done it so many times before he has become a bit stale!
On Malta the Phoenicia is a great location; it has a 5 star appearance but the breakfast buffet wasn't as tasty as Ta Cenc; the serving staff, while many of them, were not too attentive to our needs. It did not have the same friendly feel as the Ta Cenc - there was no personal feel, they were going through the motions rather than making any real effort.
If you want any clarification of the above please let me know; hopefully this 'summary' adds a bit of colour to the ratings above. Overall we all had a really great time and would recommend it to anyone but people need to know what to and what not to expect.
By Mrs Satterthwaite on 14/10/2015
Great fun. Our reps were extremely helpful. We will definitely do another walking holiday.
By Mrs Watson on 14/10/2015
Great walking with an excellent meal to come back to
By Mrs Ashcroft on 14/10/2015
Excellent in every respect
By Mr Latham on 13/10/2015
Gozo is a lovely location. We thoroughly enjoyed exploring the island and will likely visit again to see more. We'd be unlikely to stay at Hotel Ta Cenc again though ...
Hotel service was a mixed bag - front desk were ok, bar/restaurant were good, housekeeping were good.
Room was poor. Mould on the walls and a very strong smell of damp which was reported to reception but they were unable to do anything and there was no offer of an alternative room. Our clothes smelled of the damp by the end of the week as well. The kettle leaked, and was replaced. A leg fell off the bed, and was promptly repaired by staff. The room and hotel in general was tired-looking and really needs some TLC.
Food in the main hotel restaurant was ok, but we needed a change after about 3 or 4 days. Breakfasts were very good, though. Make sure you try the honey rings!! An evening meal at the Kantra restaurant was excellent, despite the stormy weather.
Charging for wifi in the rooms feels like nickel and diming the customers in the 21st century.
By Mrs Riddaway on 12/10/2015
A good holiday made especially interesting by Romina the local Rep. She is a lovely person, very helpful and very knowledgable and very willing to share her knowledge of the area. All the hotels were good and their locations very specacular . We wish we could have stayed longer in Hotel Sveti Jacob but had to return home. One night is not enough to enjoy the many attractions of this beautiful place.
By Pro Davies on 12/10/2015
The holiday was disappointing. Onward travel from Barcelona airport was so awful the thought of having to make the return journey hung over the rest of the period, such that I changed my flight and went home a day early, using bus rather than train. If you use Passeig de Graca station you need to supply the timetable - there is no way of identifying if you are catching the right train (and there's a train every 2 minutes) and it is an awful place to wait.
By Mrs Greenbank on 12/10/2015
We enjoyed our visit to a part of Burgundy that was new to us. The walking was varied, not too strenuous with good maps and mostly clear directions. The hotels and the meals were excellent. Having a Headwater rep to welcome us and be on hand if needed really made a difference.
By Mr Munden on 12/10/2015
A fabulous quiet and beautiful area of Spain but within easy reach of some great cities. El Milano Real is a perfect base for the many and varied walks on offer through this unspoilt National Park with its great food and wine and accommodation. The highlight for us was a 'birding' walk with a local biologist who was just superb. The only down side was that we didn't get maximum benefit from Teresa (and Paco whom we didn't see at all) but on the other hand all their staff were excellent. Had to book our own hotel in Madrid as Headwater's was strangely booked although available through booking.com!
By Ms Melliship on 12/10/2015
Our holiday was the perfect combination of supported and independent: you do have to be prepared to sort out a lot of things for yourself, which we really like. Yet, Sarah was always available if we needed help. The itinerary was thoughtful and had great variety every day. We got a lot of satisfaction from completing all the suggested walks. Our rest days were extremely busy days as there is lots to do in the region - we enjoyed the chance to have these days to explore and do something different.
By Mrs MacLeod on 09/10/2015
Excellent holiday; very interesting area of Spain to visit. The walks were varied with spectacular scenery. The hotel was well located and there was often something going on in the town square in the evening. Hotel staff friendly and helpful and the food was very good. I know the Spanish eat late but the 8.30pm evening meal was the only downside particularly when we wanted to have an early breakfast so we could start walking before it got too hot. Since Headwater clients have their own menu maybe an earlier sitting could be considered.
By Mrs Williams on 08/10/2015
We had a wonderful stay in Hotel Acquaviva. The location is beautiful and the hotel is within reasonable walking distance of the nearest village, Montemerano, as well as the thermal springs and village at Saturnia. There are many other ancient villages and historical sites within 1 to 1.5 hours drive, along winding but un-busy roads. The coast is well worth a visit, as is the truly beautiful city of Orvieto. Our holiday was a wonderful introduction to the beauty of Southern Tuscany.
By Mrs Donnison on 08/10/2015
The team at the hotel couldn't do enough to help. A decent range of walks nothing too strenuous but just right in the unseasonably high temperatures.
Cordoba was a stunning place to visit so would strongly recommend this on the free day. We enjoyed having the extra days in Granada as a counterfoil to the tranquility of Zuheros.
By Mr Stather on 08/10/2015
1. We felt that the Quinta do Furao hotel was ahead of the others because the staff were genuinely helpful / friendly, the restaurant served excellent locally grown food and typically Madeiran cuisine.
2. One flaw in the route notes was on Day 6 - the 2nd line on the 2nd Paragraph on page 22 - starts with 'At the T-junction of paths, turn right.....' We think it should say 'turn left!' Another (more minor) point is on Page 16 (last but one paragraph) mentioning the Tofa Mini Mercato - which we didn't find but suspect that the name has changed (they were in the process of re-vamping the shop with another name and coloured purple.
3. I would especially like to express my thanks to Donna Webber for her close attention to detail and patience when exploring the flight / accommodation options that made our holiday enjoyable during the period we had available. And also for Emma Glasgow for making exceptional steps in a very tight timescale to ensure that we received the route notes / maps etc through the post that were essential to our holiday. Thank you both
By Mr Clark on 08/10/2015
We greatly enjoyed our holiday and got to experience a wonderful part of Sicily, including the beautiful Marettimo Island. The only problem we encountered was that for the first 4 days there was a strong Sirocco wind which meant that the Zingaro reserve was closed, so that we couldn't do the suggested walk on our first day. It would have been nice to have had an alternative offered to us either by your local agent or the hotel. We were also worried what would happen if the ferry back from Marettimo was cancelled (we weren't given any info on this, yet it seems to be a common occurrence) - but in the event this wasn't needed.
By Mr Dentith on 06/10/2015
THIS PARTICULAR HOLIDAY ,THANKS TO THE HOTEL AND THE WEATHER WAS ONE OF THE BEST HOLIDAYS WE HAVE HAD WITH HEADWATER.
THE WALKING IN PARTICULAR WAS SUFFICIENTLY CHALLENGING AND ADAPTABLE . SPECTACULAR VIEWS .
THE AREA ITSELF WAS VERY INTERESTING, FROM ALL PERSPECTIVES.
GOOD NOTES AND GOOD MAPS.
By Mrs Griffiths on 06/10/2015
A delightful area, away from the usual tourist spots. An attractive, friendly hotel and village. Varied walks with lovely long-distance views. Care needed on the stony tracks and paths after a prolonged period of dry weather.
By Mrs Heard on 06/10/2015
Wonderful,all walks easy instructions to follow with small useful details personally put in buy Lucy the Rep who was full of good and helpful advice. Locations all good. All hotel staff spoke good English which really helped as we do not speak a word of Portuguese. Food good. All transfers spot on nice friendly drivers who gave local history as we traveled. Although a walking holiday found it very relaxing as we walked at our own pase and all the walks different so plenty of scenery to stop and take in. This was our 1st walking holiday and regard it as a total success exstreamly happy with Headwater and would book with them again.
By Mr Hurst on 06/10/2015
The walking exactly as described in the itinerary. For the intrepid, on the CaldeirÃ£o Verde Levada walk it is worth exploring beyond CaldeirÃ£o Verde towards CaldeirÃ£o do Inferno. The first 1.3k is easy, then their is an ambiguous option of continuing along levada or climbing steeply on well maintained steps signposted 'CaldeirÃ£o do Inferno 0.8km'. We chose the latter. The step take you up to a much higher level levada and a maze of tunnels and bits of old railway track. There is a yellow and red way marker here that seems to indicate this is the official route. Unfortunately we didn't have time to explore further.
On day 5 we would highly recommend the SÃ£o LourenÃ§o walk - but do go early before it gets busy.
On days where transfers are provided, it is worth verifying that the driver knows where he should be taking you. On the CaldeirÃ£o Verde Levada day we were half way to Funchal before we realised the driver had mistaken our destination.
Quinta da Bella Vista is not a 5 star hotel. It has an air of faded luxury, but they need to focus on the basics like cleanliness and service to earn their 5 stars. The bedroom wing needs a freshen-up - e.g. the faded / stained carpets replaced. The 5 course meal and service in the half-board restaurant was ok, but didn't really live up to expectations. The 'production line' catering was obvious and service perfunctory. Having said that, there are some interesting public areas - the pool / bar, old house and gardens. Having after-dinner drinks and coffee by the pool with views over Funchal was memorable.
The Quinta do Furao and Serra Golf were fine hotels in their different ways.
By Mr Allan on 06/10/2015
We had an excellent holiday in Slovenia. We loved the countryside and enjoyed all the walks; the WW1 sites added a further interest. We particularly enjoyed our stays at the Miklic and Jezero hotels. We extended our holiday by 2 nights at Lake Bohinj, which is beautiful and had several walks to add, and a further 2 in Ljubljana and could recommend that as an option.
By Rev Pearson on 06/10/2015
A lovely way to get to know a charming island, in a luxurious hotel. Gozo is easy to navigate around and the paths have been upgraded recently. A very enjoyable and relaxing holiday.
By Mr Bell on 06/10/2015
Lovely hotel on the beautiful island of Gozo. Natives very friendly!
By Mrs Guthrie on 06/10/2015
Apart from the rail debacle, the content of the holiday was stunning. The nature of the medieval villages was quite breathtaking and more reminiscent of Walt Disney cartoons or even pantomime scenery. The vineyard walks were very enjoyable, as were the visits we made to the wineries! In addition the Riquewier 'Council' offer conducted vineyard walking tours, together with wine cellar visits every Friday throughout the summer until harvest time in September WITHOUT CHARGE!! (BUT possibly only in French and/or English). Another Vineyard 'special' (which I don't think you are aware of) is the 'Spirit of the Vines' a line of seven groups of wooden statues representing a modern interpretation of mankind's integration with the vines over the centuries. This is a surreal eye-catcher, not to be missed and is just outside the village of Bergheim. Best to get directions from the local Tourist Office.
By Mrs Bathe on 05/10/2015
This holiday provides a stress-free camino experience for those who either do not wish to or cannot carry a full back pack. Accommodation and meals are of a significantly higher standard than is available in the hostels and dormitories along the route. As well as completing the 100km required for the compostela, it combines some interesting earlier sections of the camino as a bonus. The guided tour of Leon provides an excellent introduction to the camino combined with the visit to the impressive Cathedral and other historic buildings. It is well worth extending the holiday to spend two nights in both Leon and Santiago de Compostela.
By Mrs McMillan on 30/09/2015
This was our first holiday with Headwater and we were very impressed. It was a good balance between walking and relaxation. The programme was put together very well: no walking on the first day, a gentle first walk the following day and then the longest walk mid-holiday. By the time we tackled the mountain walk, we were feeling fitter and more able to take on the challenges. It was good to relax by the sea for the last two nights and we enjoyed the coastal walk. It was a great way to discover a new area and we really enjoyed the beautiful countryside in Istria.
The hotels were very good and the food was excellent.
We would like to single out Romina for particular attention, she was absolutely delightful, intelligent, responsive and very caring, she did a marvellous job.
Thank you Headwater, we are very keen to use you again in the future.
By Mr Creswell on 30/09/2015
Wonderful scenery, good friendly hotels, tough walks but worth it! Mosquitoes, especially the new 'tiger mosquitoes' are a real problem it would seem even in September so take lots of insect repellent and a spray to do your room before bedtime. I covered my legs and sprayed my arms for walking when I realised this and that did the trick!
By Mrs Hickling on 30/09/2015
Lovely village and some good walking. The vultures were impressive. Maybe more attractive in spring when the flowers are out. All the trvel arrangements worked flawlessly. The food at the hotel was very variable and a little disappointing at times. The walking was all in quite a small area and there was some repetition of sections. But overall it was a very enjoyable trip. Staying in a single location is definitely more relaxing than moving on every day. The bat cave in Zuheros was an amazing place, and a visit to Granada was definitely worthwhile. We were lucky too that our visit coincided with the cheese festival in the village
By Mr Swetman on 30/09/2015
We thought the Xander Hotel was OK but not brilliant, rooms were quite hot at night with no air conditioning so didn't always sleep that well. Most staff helpful. We had one very wet day and there was no drying facilities which we would have thought would be available for a walking holiday. We did think that the 1 & 2 boot walks were a bit tame compared to what we usually look for, we did have a much more challenging week with Exodus (appreciate you are part of the same group) the following week in the Dolomites.
In summary, a good week but not an excellent one.
By Mrs Dimond on 30/09/2015
A wonderful opportunity to have a 'safe adventure!'. Euganian Hills are a beautiful, unspoilt area to explore, the vineyards and olive groves were a delight, and the views amazing.
By Mrs Reeves on 29/09/2015
An excellent holiday in every way. The food and wines were amazing and it was a most interesting region to explore.
By Mr Jamieson on 29/09/2015
Well-chosen walks in a scenic area with classic limestone features. Can be rocky and stony underfoot in places, but all walks within Grade 2 definition. Arrangements at Hotel Zuhayra are excellent; Antonio was always helpful and the staff went out of their way to provide good, friendly service.
By Mr Taylor on 29/09/2015
From the first contact with Headwater until we left our Hotel the service was excellent. The Hotel was small, comfortable and the staff very friendly. The walking notes were fantastic, and the walks took in some most wonderful scenery. Cannot fault the holiday at all. Thank you.
By Mr Asteriades on 29/09/2015
We have been on a large number of self-guided Headwater walking holidays. This was in many ways the best in terms of scenery and walking. For those who suffer from vertigo it does have a few 'moments' but you can invariably negotiate around these.
By Mr Tucker on 29/09/2015
Overall holiday was very enjoyable and notes were excellent. Quality of food at Hotel Alpenruh was fantastic.
On slightly negative side - we found out that Hotel Baeren had fully booked for a conference and we were put in a room which was off the first floor function room. This was not of the same quality as first room and was noisy with staff clearing later away later following function downstairs. Seemed like we were the easy option to relocate?
Food at Hotel Alte Post was very basic and not of the same quality as other hotels.
By Mrs Potts on 29/09/2015
Excellent walking , wonderful food and welcoming host
By Mrs Houghton on 29/09/2015
Very well organised from start to finish
By Mr King on 29/09/2015
Very good well balanced trip
By Mr Gagnon on 29/09/2015
This holiday was superb. The scenery was unspoilt mountainous terrain and pastoral along the river valleys. Well away from tourist areas. A good variety of walks ranging from easy to quite challenging, with very accurate walking notes. We did Rio Tormes, Laguna Grande, Villages of the South to name a few. Saw 45+ species of birds. Weather in September was cool at night but got into low twenties in the afternoons. Typically 7 degrees warmer on the south side of the Sierras. We took the ferry from Portsmouth to Santander and drove down - very pleasant. The hotel was great and Teresa was a wonderful hostess.
By Mr Smith on 29/09/2015
A fascinating area of Spain with varied landscapes from rugged mountains, to terraced hillsides with vineyards and fruit trees, gently flowing streams, Pine woods and open flat plains with Evergreen Oaks. Also abundant wildlife with dozens of bird species, wild mountain goats, Black cattle, and horses. Ancient walled cities and quaint villages. All within two hours of Madrid.
By Mr Walker on 29/09/2015
Superb - staff & food at Hotel unsurpassable. Italian Maps not up to OS Standard (no surprise there!). You should have noted the new (2014) skilift available to take walkers down from Klammbachhutte (or a 20 min walk from Klammbachhutte) saving 4km of descent out of 5.6km.
Mountain Hut food was way higher in standard than we expected
By Dr Emerson on 29/09/2015
Headwater Holidays always provide excellent care and services, and value for money vacaions is well chosen resorts and hotels. The only thing left to chance is the weather.
By Mr Murison on 25/09/2015
The undiscovered Tuscany walks were very enjoyable and the Locanda Senio in Palazzuolo was superb with a wonderful atmosphere created by Ercole and superb food created by Roberta. We'd love to return!
By Mr Bowie on 25/09/2015
Excellent with wide range of walks accurately described and graded. Very good hotel with delicious food and very helpful staff.
By Mr Black on 24/09/2015
well organised travel. route descriptions were accurate and easy to follow. beautiful scenery and well away from the crowds
By Mr Patten on 24/09/2015
Good value and well thought out
By Mrs Johnson on 23/09/2015
Really enjoyable week with everything thought of and attention to detail. Excellent route notes.
By Mrs Everson-davis on 23/09/2015
Challenging and varied walking in spectacular surroundings, with the additional bonus of a comfortable and friendly hotel base providing excellent cuisine.
By Ms Kyle on 23/09/2015
Well organised with brilliant walking notes we were really pleased with all aspects of our trip and would definitely consider booking another holiday with you again. Thanks
By Mr Knowles on 23/09/2015
Very well planned and organised. We made a change to our itinerary which Headwater took in their stride. Very impressed with the hotels which were exactly to our taste, not too posh for walkers!
By Mrs Campling on 23/09/2015
Headwater take the pressure of organising your holiday off you and have never disappointed us in their attention to detail.
By Mr Masters on 22/09/2015
Beautiful area with well chosen hotels that have excellent cuisine and wines. The Italian signposting system for footpaths is not consistently good, so walkers need to be alert.
By Mr Banham on 22/09/2015
We thoroughly enjoyed our holiday, albeit the weather was a little disappointing. The accommodation was excellent, and the food outstanding. We did not feel that the walking route instructions were as clear or as accurate as those on our 2 previous holidays with Headwater, but no harm done! Would definitely recommend to like minded friends.
By Mr Christy on 22/09/2015
A really excellent week - well organised and planned, allowing us to concentrate on the splendid walks. I hadn't been on an organised walking holiday before, but I will certainly try some more of these trips in future, since they allow you to get to places that you might not try on your own.
By Mr Campion on 22/09/2015
everyone has their own preferences and interests and what we liked might not appeal to others, so decide what is important to you and investigate whether that is part of the holiday you are looking at.
By Mrs Tremayne-smith on 22/09/2015
It was the first time for us with Headwater so we were slightly apprehensive but everything was excellent but mostly the choice of hotel. We are now looking forward to our next Headwater holiday to Gozo which is already booked.
By Mr Unsworth on 21/09/2015
A good holiday we both enjoyed. The hotels were in great locations, most with fantastic balcony views. Transfer between hotels was prompt in clean modern vehicles. The walks came with good route plans, occasional misleading directions, but no great dramas. Went through some fantastic small villages and great views, especially the walk of the gods.
By Ms Winch on 21/09/2015
Lovely holiday with very welcoming local people
By Mr Sadler on 21/09/2015
The representatives Katie and Jim made the holiday truly wonderful. They were extremely helpful with nothing too much trouble.
By Mrs Wakefield on 21/09/2015
Wonderful variety of walks and scenery with comfortable hotels and good food.
By Mr McGregor on 21/09/2015
Beautiful area but let down by inattention to detail.
Disappointing largely for small but cumulative reasons.
By Mrs Lammiman on 21/09/2015
Great walks with spectacular views. We liked the mix of b&b and half board . Ended our holiday with two extra days in Pisa / Lucca with more walking ...but but well worth it .
By Mr Cooper on 21/09/2015
A good holiday in stunning locations and using the various transport options very creatively. Expensive- but that is probably a reflection of the cost of the area
By Mr Fisher on 21/09/2015
You enabled us to visit a part of Sicily we could not have done on our own. The area was beautiful, the walks good and we enjoyed the company of fellow travellers. Thank you
By Mr Harrison on 21/09/2015
Undiscovered Tuscany, was as it says, undiscovered and unspoilt. The walks each day showed a different aspect of the local hills and valleys of this region. The food and wine were unbeatable. The hospitality of the hotelier Ercole and staff was excellent.
By Mrs Daniels on 21/09/2015
This was such a very well organised package holiday that we felt that we were independant travellers, but with the safety net of a rep, if required. We managed the pace, stops and route ourselves and had a truly excellent break.
By Mrs McInnes on 21/09/2015
This is my 10 th Headwater holiday,this time I convinced three friends to walk the Camino de Santiago with Headwater.
Our group of four were very pleased with Headwater and are looking at more holidays with them.
By Mrs Broad on 21/09/2015
Menorca is a lovely island, incredibly pretty and very easy to get around. The Morvedra Nou hotel is in a perfect setting if you want peace and quiet. The gardens and pool area are so relaxing, the bird song is the only thing you'll hear! Unfortunately, we were unable to upgrade at the time of booking, to one of the larger rooms, and although our room was spotlessly clean and had a sunny patio, we did find it on the small side. Not a big deal as we were out walking most days. The walks were excellent, sometimes really off the beaten track, great wildlife and fabulous scenery, quite a few 'wow' moments as we came round a headland or walked through the gorge to the caves. Our only gripe, was the food. Breakfast was fine, plenty of choice but dinner was very hit and miss. There was no comparison to the food photos on the hotel website, and the portion sizes and combinations were very strange. Sometimes the starters were far too big, and the main course would be just a large piece of meat/fish with one small potato if you were lucky (no veg). There was only one evening out of ten, that we both enjoyed the whole meal, which was so disappointing. Honestly, neither of us are fussy eaters, but we have never left so much food on our plates, and not once did anyone ask us about it.
By Mr Lawrence on 18/09/2015
Relaxing yet active walking holiday - lovely locations and good back up if needed
By Mrs Price on 18/09/2015
This was one of our very best Headwater holidays. We liked the mix of walks and sight-seeing. We felt very well looked after.
By Mr Graham on 18/09/2015
This was a really good holiday, excellent in all respects except that the walking notes, generally of high standard, let us down badly at one point. We explained to Lin where this was and hopefully this will be sorted out
Thank you for taking the time to pass along your comments, it is wonderful to know that you had such a lovely holiday. Your explanation of where the notes went wrong was indeed passed along and, as we always try to do, your suggestions were taken into account in order to improve the experience for future customers. Once again many thanks from your team at Headwater.
By Mrs Allen on 18/09/2015
A selection of lovely, varied walks amid beautiful mountain scenery in an unspoilt area. Slovenia also has a fascinating if somewhat turbulent history and the route notes (and rest day booklet suggestions) included historical references which added to our enjoyment of the walks and area. If you enjoy turquoise rivers, watching rafting/kayaking/canoeing/fishing on them; are not worried by suspension bridges; like birdsong, butterflies and wildflowers (even in August) we think you would enjoy this holiday. High quality regional 'slow food' ( i.e.not processed) was delicious. The Slovenian people we met were welcoming, friendly and helpful. This was our eighth holiday with Headwater and we felt that the walking level was consistent with other two boot holidays we have taken with you.
By Mr Hunter on 18/09/2015
Disappointed with the hiking trails in that there wasn't sufficient variety of environment and experience ( too much forest trail and tarmac)
Routes of reasonable length, would have preferred higher altitude experience . One route had an indistinct and hazardous section leading up to the road into Kobarid. This path needs repair and clearance ( potential for serious accident).
M tours staff excellent.
By Mrs Beard on 18/09/2015
Excellent experience - very well organised and delivered. All the walking notes were accurate and easy to follow. The hotel is ideally located to access a wide range of excellent and beautiful walks
By Mis Smith on 17/09/2015
This was our first Headwater walking holiday, and it has definitely lived up to our expectations. We thoroughly enjoyed the mixture of walks, as well as the cuisine and rest day activities. Jim and Katie are excellent reps, and definitely contributed to our memorable experience. Many thanks!
By Mr Howell on 16/09/2015
Perfect holiday. Beautiful countryside, great walks and the pools at the end of every walk were a real treat. Also there was the perfect mix of culture and countryside.
All the hotels were very good, the walks varied. Headwater holidays take the stress out of the holiday, once you have booked, all you need to do is turn up,
relax and enjoy.
We wanted to attend our son's wedding at the beginning of our holiday, in the area, and Headwater made it possible to combine the wedding, the walking and some extra nights in Pisa!
The staff at the office give you an excellent service!
By Mr Hodgetts on 15/09/2015
Walking in the Alentejo (Costa Vicentina) provided the contrast between Fabulous Frank's creation of paradise in the interior - 4 miles off the nearest tarmac road - and the most stunning cliff top walking I have ever done. The latter is definitely not for the vertiginous but if you're OK with sheer drops on one side the views are fantastic. The walking on the coast, on the Rota Vicentina sometimes felt like a mini-Sahara as some parts are through deep soft sand but we came back fitter with thighs that can shell brazil nuts!
The walking in the inland section was delightful through cork oak and eucalyptus forests - hardly saw a soul all day - and the lake swimming at the Quinta was heaven at the end of a hot days plodding.
By Mr Whitehurst on 15/09/2015
Great opportunity to visit famous sites in UK within a structured organised and well supported walk
By Mis Davis on 15/09/2015
Brilliant all we wanted
By Dr Gompertz on 15/09/2015
A great holiday.. enjoyable as other HW holidays we have had!.
A little too hot...perhaps we should have waited for 2 weeks later in September.
By Mrs Harris on 15/09/2015
We usually travel independently but found that Headwater offered a hotel package more cheaply than we could buy ourselves and there was the additional benefit of the route notes which were excellent. My husband is the navigator of our team, but having tried Headwater, if I ever needed to travel on my own, I would be confident about using their notes and routes which were exceptional. We went to the Dolomites and had superb weather which made for a stunning holiday with plenty of walks to choose from. I would certainly use Headwater again.
By Mr Blunt on 14/09/2015
Lovely locations. There is so much choice of what to do on your spare days.
Although the walks are not too strenuous you do need to have enough food and water with you as there are few places on route where you can stock-up.
Do take your time following route instructions as markers are not always immediately obvious and can become difficult to see or disappear entirely.
By Mrs Carrington-bro on 14/09/2015
This was our second holiday with Headwater and again we had an excellent holiday. It was very well organised and the walking notes were easy to follow. The holiday certainly lived up to its name of being a gastrnomic walking tour - the food was delicious throughout and all four hotels were very friendly.
The walking was pleasant but suffered a litlte in comparison to our first hoiday with Headwater (Umbria) as the Dordogne is a busier area than Umbria.
Our top tip would be to visit Le font de Gaume when staying in Les Eyzies - there are a limited number of tickets issued each day and 52 of these go on sale each morning at 9.30am. The receptionist at the hotel suggested we shoud be there by 7.30am, as September isn't peak season and as she predicted we weren't the first, we joined the very orderly queque as nos 11 and 12; it was a magical experience seeing original paintings that are 14,000 years old.
We came home feeling very relaxed and ready to book another Headwater holiday.
By Ms Griffin on 14/09/2015
September is a poor choice for a walking holiday on Gozo. The interior is typically very hot and humid and the landscape very dry and baron. There are few trees on the island and the sun beats down on you all day. The coast is lovely and there was, at times, a small breeze, but most of the suggested walking routes are not coastal. We were told by locals that the landscape is lovely and green, with lots of wildflowers, around May,and the temperatures more suitable for walking. Ta Cenc is a comfortable hotel but more like a -4 star hotel, rather than a 5 star.
By Mrs Tait on 14/09/2015
Excellent except for Marco Polo, slightly long transfer. The area was beautiful walking very good for all abilities.
By Mrs McDonagh on 10/09/2015
difficult to fault,made by extreme helpfulness from local agent,Liberata
By Mrs Turrell on 10/09/2015
walking is more challenging than described with gravel underfoot often making the going tough and slippery. Be prepared for no evening entertainment with locations very dull in September. Learn some german as majority of signs did not translate for visitors.
By Mr Boff on 10/09/2015
We enjoyed our holiday but did not feel that much of that enjoyment was due to Headwater, I'm afraid.
By Mrs Wright on 10/09/2015
Gererally good. Your suggested walks tended to go through forest paths too much for our personal liking. We prefer to be about the tree line walking on the tops of the hills, with the ability to view the surrounding area all the time going down to any villages that we may see on the way. We found that too much time was spent following forest trails with only the occasional view. Your notes were helpful and we followed two of them, the Frenchman's walk and the Day One walk but after that we did our own. For your interest we had an excellent walk, covering over 30 miles, when we reached Sedam Alm at approximately 1,666 metres. We deviated along the way and made 3 stops for refreshments but it including all that it took us about 9 hours. It would take less without deviations! Interestingly some of the gusthof stops had a 'stamping' system whereby walkers could get a card stamped along the way. Much like the pilgrim paths. You may like to look into this? The hotel was good but the food was really only average. The hotel room, which we had upgraded to was very good and I would recommend an upgrade to anyone. We didn't participate in the pool/spa facilities as we were always too late back from our walks, so really we were paying for something that we couldn't use. We found an excellent restaurant in Weidach were we had two evening meals, as we were fed up with the hotel food. Bus service good. Chair lifts good. Manager and David (waiter) had good attitude and were extremely helpful. I hope this all helpful for you
By Dr Hodgson on 09/09/2015
A really lovely holiday: excellent walking, and a chance to enjoy the special culture of the area.
By Mr Varley on 09/09/2015
The Park Bellevue hotel was an excellent walking and cycling base in terms of its location, the options available and the standard and service of the hotel and its team. The local bus and rail transport and connections were frequent and very reliable and the provided Mobil card was fully utilised. The walks suggested in the holiday pack provided ample options for all abilities and the enclosed maps coupled with the standard of signing in the Dolomites showed there was much more to try if needed. A great holiday, helped by wall to wall sunshine for the first 4 days!
By Mr Fraser on 08/09/2015
Excellent holiday; fantastic hotel - which would it seems would be hard to book into directly (unless doing so a couple of years ahead). Used Headwater 3 times now which I would not have done if I did not regard them as a good company.
By Mrs Taylor on 07/09/2015
Well organised, extremely good hotels in lovely locations. First class food and service. The whole experience was wonderful and would highly recommend it to those looking for a similar holiday.
By Mrs Bush on 07/09/2015
We loved this walk. Accommodation on the whole was as good as it could be given the isolated nature of some places. We were particularly impressed with the helpfulness of staff at Headwater when BA cancelled our outward flight the evening before our journey so we didn't miss any of our holiday. The arrangements went very smoothly. The weather in mid July was very hot-unusually so according to locals- so if you suffer from the heat, earlier or later might be better!
By Ms Read on 04/09/2015
Really enjoyed the location, and the food etc at Locando Senio.
We very much appreciated the catering for our strict vegetarian diet. They took it very seriously and offered a good range of veggie food.
Walking notes were good, and it was a pleasure to relax into the whole few days of walking with confidence in the notes.
Liked hotel touring very much. Clean and very central to Bologna. Helpful staff.
By Ms Hancock on 03/09/2015
A great holiday with fantastic walk suggestions that we used in conjunction with the map to explore the area.
By Mr Collins on 03/09/2015
Dolomites and Venice were spectacular
By Mr Taylor on 01/09/2015
Excellent holiday in an excellent location... 10 out of 10. Looking forward to returning.
By Ms Savage on 01/09/2015
Excellent hotel, food and location.
By Mrs Hine on 01/09/2015
A good holiday. The weather was not kind to us, but the hotels were very helpful about this, offering drying room services. The notes were very helpful. Accuracy was a problem in only one area where substantial redevelopment work was being done on the tracks. The fact we had a good map (supplied by Headwater) with us, meant this was not a major issue. One of the hoteliers summed up the area as being good for cows and cheese! The walking is therefore mainly through pasture (often quite high), but which was very pretty, if a little muddy in the rain. Some of the views (when it was not raining) were magnificent. Overall, despite the rain, we had a relaxing break.
By Mr Versteeg on 01/09/2015
We really enjoyed ourselves on the High Alps Walk. We were very pleased that we had built in additional days (taking the holiday to twelve) to provide variety and be 'tourists' We really enjoyed 'Belle Dimanche' - the annual Fair high above Chatel. (next year it's on weekend around 21st August) Cloisters at Abondance very interesting.
In twelve days we had two dull and one very wet day(be prepared); rest of the time very good. Can be hot.
By Mrs Maddison on 25/08/2015
Most enjoyable holiday, great walks, beautiful scenery and lots of wine tasting along the way.
By Mr Still on 24/08/2015
Well researched, well organised, varied walks to interesting towns with an attractive mix of accommodation all supplemented by an excellent local rep.
By Mr Russell on 24/08/2015
I joined this vacation basically to walk through some lovely countryside and to see a lot of historic buildings in Spain. That was pretty much what I got. But in addition very enjoyable stays at the hotels where the staff all spoke great English and were really helpful. The guides made some very useful suggestions that saw me undertake day 2 hikes on day 1 and 2 . Good advice for the middle of summer and it enabled me to get back in time about 3.30 to enjoy the wonderful situation of Castell de Emporda. The Coastal phase was beautiful and after the completion of the hike and I stayed a few more days at Begur.
By Mr Gray on 24/08/2015
A very enjoyable mix of interesting walks and good hotels. Probably best-suited for adults whose idea of a good holiday is not sitting around on a beach.
By Mr Severn on 24/08/2015
Excellent - we had a fab holiday!
By Mr Stephens on 24/08/2015
It is a varied holiday of mountains and lakes with plenty of opportunities for wild swimming and the potential for great photographs from high places. Some days are longer and / or more arduous than the 1 boot. Note that if travelling through Frankfurt airport, you may be subject to security and / or passport checks despite only being 'in transit'. Also, be aware that the gates between connections can be some distance apart, so the 1hr 20mins between flights that we had was just sufficient to catch the onward flight. Very good holiday although temperatures were higher than expected.
By Mrs Walker on 19/08/2015
A fantastic holiday in a beautiful area of Italy. So great to look forward to a refreshing swim in the hotel pool at the end of each day's walking, and feeling we have earned our glass of Prosecco and delicious meal. Always lovely to receive a warm welcome at the hotels and find our room and luggage ready and waiting for us.
By Pro Beevers on 18/08/2015
Very attentive hard-working reps.
Quite challenging walking in terms of ascent and sometimes difficulty underfoot especially in wet weather. Possibly two boot. Pretty villages with plenty to do on days off.
Startlingly poor 'welcome' in Seewinkel left us fuming but was very much the exception. Excellent food throughout and interesting hotels generally.
By Mr Cook on 17/08/2015
A very enjoyable experience in one of the lesser known (for Americans, at least) areas of France.
By Mr Frew on 17/08/2015
Great Holiday. Some amazing Italian meals.
By Mrs Taverner on 17/08/2015
Lovely location with excellent walks. Plenty of shade so, although 35 degrees in the first week of August, not too hot to walk (just). Not at all touristy ðŸ˜„Breakfast was a bit of a let down but the evening (all vegetarian) meals were very nice.... although my husband was craving a burger by the middle of the week! No courses were repeated during the week and the food freshly prepared and well presented. We enjoyed the pasta making demonstration. Do check your bill on leaving - an extra bottle of wine had mysteriously appeared on ours.
By Ms Halliday on 13/08/2015
Very relaxing holiday. Loved Maremma, interesting and varied walks, stunning unspoilt locations. Villa Aqua Viva was set in beautiful gardens surrounded by picturesque countryside, elegantly furnished and impeccably clean. Wonderful views from the swimming pool and the restaraunt. Staff were friendly and helpful. Was a little disappointed by the food. Some dishes were delicious but others were poor. Shower cubicle in deluxe room was tiny and the other room, although comfortable, did not meet the advertised deluxe criteria. 5 hour delay and missing connection marred return journey. Treated poorly by BA staff at Rome airport, lots of queuing and no information about where we would spend the night or new flight times. When we arrived at Heathrow, BA staff there had booked us into a hotel and booked new flights but there was no consultation about flight times. We arrived home very tired as we did not get to hotel until 12.45 am and were up again at 5.45 am to get an early connecting flight.
By Mr Hardaker on 13/08/2015
An excellent circuit of the Bernese Alps staying at good standard hotels run by friendly and helpful people. The walking notes were well written and accurate, allowing the map to stay in the bag.
By Mis Ng on 13/08/2015
The service staff at the hotel provided in the package for the Davos walk was excellent at Hotel Meierhof. They were very attentive, and the hotel had really great facilities when it was raining (pool, sauna).
Please note that the directions on the notes for the walks (which is the primary aspect of the holiday) are often wrong! I found myself halfway through a 10 km hike completely lost in the middle of the mountains, and I was fortunate I had my smart phone on me with googlemaps on it. The notes they provided me with needed a lot of updating. This was particularly dangerous as I was hiking through some rather difficult terrain and received wrong directions halfway through a very difficult walk. If you decide to go hiking, it's highly recommended you take either your smart phone with a maps app on it, *and* strongly recommended that you have some kind of map skills as well as a physical map when you go hiking.
The scenery is beautiful, however the level of difficulty of the walks is much harder than you might anticipate as the pathways were often quite challenging, the 'descent' that they describe in the directions often means a very, very steep slope that could be very dangerous if raining. This is for people who are relatively fit and are mindful of trekking through some mountain terrain with a walking stick even if you are relatively young.
The rest of the holiday was absolutely wonderful, but the hiking aspect is very challenging and you can't rely on the directions of the notes they give you as a general guide.
By Mr Howard on 13/08/2015
Excellent experience. A privilege to walk through such a beautiful and little known part of Spain!
By Mr Howarth on 13/08/2015
Having taken 6 walking holidays through yourselves and Inntravel in the French Alps, Swiss Alps, Pyrenees and Dolomites, this holiday is the favourite of them all for both my wife and I.
This was a new region for us which offered a good variety of terrain and landscapes. The unexpectedness and beauty revealed as each walk progressed made this a gem of a holiday. Would definitely recommend whole heartedly.
By Mrs Hayton on 12/08/2015
The combination of good walks, comfortable accommodation and good quality evening meals provided us with a relaxing and enjoyable weeks holiday . Knowing that our Headwater rep was available on the end of the phone if we did needed anything was a bonus.
By Mrs Weaver on 12/08/2015
Our first walking holiday and first with Headwater. We had a great experience and will come back. A few errors in notes we will send details to you.
By Mr Burke on 12/08/2015
Our location was excellent and we were well looked after but your currency pricing policy for Euro residents is unfair and uncompetitive. I estimate it doubled the cost of our holiday.
By Mrs Hart on 12/08/2015
We had a simply brilliant and superbly relaxing week at Locanda Senio. Everything about the hotel was faultless (great vegetarian food, friendly and helpful people, and a gorgeous location). It is perfectly possible to enjoy a break here without doing any serious walking and whether you want to hike 20km+ each day or just potter around the village and environs you should find something to suit!
The travel arrangements also worked seamlessly.
By Mr Bryant on 11/08/2015
Hotel is in great location, all walks are very close and varied. Hotel was comfortable, our room was old in terms of decor, but others have been recently refurbished. The evening meals were pretty good (mainly meat, very little fish), breakfast was rather bland (limited selection mainly bread). Packed lunch was welcome, but was a sandwich only, which was quite lacking compared to other Headwater packed lunches.
By Dr Lewis on 11/08/2015
Slovenia is an amazing unspoilt gem. The people are really friendly, and everyone speaks English (and Slovenian, German and Italian!)
By Mr Willson on 10/08/2015
Holiday lived up to gastronomic label with a good selection of restaurants. Hotels are comfortable. Quality of walks is satisfactory but more work is needed.
We are so glad you enjoyed the hotels and the gastronomic restaurants. We always aim for more than satisfactory and your suggestions regarding the walks were passed along and have been considered as part of our process of continuous development. We are happy to say that the walks have been improved for 2016 and we hope to see you again soon. All the best from your team at Headwater.
By Mr North on 10/08/2015
Loved this holiday although the walking was quite tough. Because the weather on the first day of walking to another hotel wasn't good, the slippery, narrow path deserved a rating of more than 1+Boot. Maybe an alternative walk at a lower level for such conditions could be offered. We diverted off the path onto a logging track for safety reasons but this made the walk longer so still tougher than expected. For us most of the walks definitely needed the + as part of the rating.
By Mrs Young on 10/08/2015
An excellent holiday that exceeded our expectations in a fabulous mountainous environment. Accommodation was superb.
By Mr Clare on 03/08/2015
This was such a memorable holiday that we will always remember. The countryside is stunning and the walks allow you to take in some superb views of the hilltop villages and vines. Each hotel was excellent, with either amazing views at breakfast, or a welcoming pool or superb menus. The evening meals were an experience in themselves. We are not food buffs in any shape or form but I don't think we have ever eaten so well before in our lives. The walks can be challenging at times although in late July we were setting off with the temperature in the mid 20s which reached the mid to high 30s in the afternoon (take plenty of water bottles!). If you like walking, fine wine and superb food this is the holiday for you.
By Mis Bernstein on 03/08/2015
All the hotels were lovely and all the staff everywhere were welcoming and helpful. The walking was a little disappointing in that there was a lot of road-walking and two very boring long slogs from the town of Meursault to the station and from the station at Gevrey-Chambertin to Les Deux Chevres. The meals in the evening were marvellous and memorable. The villages were very pretty. Disappointing that there was no truffle hunting. Lin was an excellent tour guide and everything ran like clockwork.
Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback with us. We appreciate all customer feedback and are pleased that you enjoyed such a wonderful, memorable holiday. Regarding the road walking and the slogs to and from the station on day 2, we have taken these - and other - customer comments on board and for 2017 have made suitable alterations. The route no longer follows the roads and the train station no longer features. The new route follows footpaths and tracks, and very occasionally quiet lanes, through woodland, vineyards and mediaeval villages, from just south of Dijon to the wonderful wine village of Gevrey Chambertin. We believe this has greatly improved the walking. We were sorry to read that you missed the truffle hunting during your holiday; this activity is only available between Thursdays and Mondays. We were also pleased to see that you thought our Rep Lin was excellent. She will be delighted to hear your lovely feedback. We would like to thank you for constructive comments and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future. Kind regards, Your Headwater customer service team.
By Mrs Truelove on 31/07/2015
We had a really good week's walking, albeit in 40 degrees! Croatia was fabulous and we would return in the future.
Your representative Romina Brumnic was absolutely excellent and nothing was too much trouble for her to arrange - a real asset.
By Mr Stansbury on 31/07/2015
Notes need to be refreshed - paths have changed in places (wind damage) and other minor inaccuracies. Craigdarroch Inn room disappointing - it was over the kitchen and smelt of cooking all night. Rooms need to have bathrooms not shower-rooms to help recover after each day's walking. Timings for walking need to take into account bus times in order to have realistic expectations of where and when to stop for lunch (3rd and last days)
By Ms Toward on 30/07/2015
Enjoyed the holiday. Not many tourists in the area- good.
Quiet and relaxing. Very much left to your own devices.
By Mr Rogers on 29/07/2015
you get to some amazing places using well marked parks and good public transport one of the best walking experiences in Europe
By Mrs Coonan on 28/07/2015
Jim and Katie Illingworth, the Headwater reps, were absolutely fantastic - the best we have ever had; from the postcard we received a few days before our trip to their solicitous and detailed advice about the routes, the travel arrangements and thoughtful attention to detail e.g. Katie suggested that we buy a multi pack of bottled water which could be transported with our luggage every day. In addition as we experienced a heatwave during our trip, they suggested ways of shortening the walks to make them more manageable. They also recommended excellent restaurants when an evening meal was not included giving us lots of choices. Francisco, the taxi driver who transported the bags (and us on some days as it was so hot and we didn't want to walk) was delightful despite his lack of English and our lack of Spanish!
By Mr Parker on 28/07/2015
Delightful holiday experience from start to finish. The hotels were lovely and the walking varied. It's a good way to get to know a small part of Burgundy and appreciate the lovely scenery as there was plenty to do on the rest days too. The hotels were all well chosen and the neighbouring restaurants of a high standard. We especially appreciated being taken into Beaune by Lin for our last dinner, which was especially good. We also appreciated the chance to buy wines en route and collect them at the end.
By Mr Valk on 28/07/2015
Very enjoyable walking in spectacular countryside, along well signed and maintained paths, guided by excellent route notes.
By Mrs Turner on 27/07/2015
Having enjoyed a previous Headwater walking holiday in Tuscany that was also rated '2 boot' our assessment is that this holiday to Croatia was much harder and a reasonable level of fitness is essential. The hotels are all OK although we were a little disappointed that the swimming pools were indoor. At the Hotel Vela Vrata you had better like truffles! Day 5 walking instructions could be better. As part of the packed lunches (variable quality!) you receive a single small bottle of water - this was wildly insufficient especially in the intense heat of July. Overall though a great holiday, Croatia is beautiful.
By Mr Powell on 27/07/2015
Well organised and did what it said on the can!
By Mrs Dentith on 27/07/2015
This is a true three booter there isn't a lot of level walking , have good comfortable boots and poles ,I think, are essential.
Do use the lifts if they are working ,it's no fun walking up those gradients with a working chair lift over your heads.
The views from the tops are dramatic on clear days.
The walk timings are pretty accurate.
By Mrs Love-fordham on 24/07/2015
Challenging hiking with amazing views and a good choice of things to do on non hiking days. First two hikes have very few other hikers which I like. Last two hikes were much more public and busy. On a whole, the area has been developed as a vacation spot and one encounters masses of tourists from Asia and India in the towns and any attractions - never on the trails. It is a bit overwhelming. There isn't much of an opportunity to encounter Swiss culture. We enjoyed the hikes, the views were wonderful, but we were a bit dismayed that there were so many tourists to contend with and that we rarely encountered Swiss people to chat with. There is no local rep so you depend on the hoteliers - all were very good except for Hotel Baren.
By Mrs Langleben on 24/07/2015
The fact that we have been travelling with Headwater since 1996 speaks volumes. This should be recommendation enough
By Ms Druce on 21/07/2015
From the minute we booked with Headwater we have had excellent service. Even though we never dealt with 1 consultant - bit confusing as we had many people reply to our emails - everyone who did reply knew exactly what the previous person had said or done. Would perhaps be better to deal with 1 consultant. Our reps who fetched and dropped us off were great - even messaged to see how the day went and when they knew the weather was going to be extremely hot warned us and said they could pick us up at an earlier location if need be. They also recommended things to do on our days off which was great. The Hotels were very very good - we could not complain about anything. Value for money I do not know how to answer as for us coming from South Africa with the weak Rand - it was very expensive but that cannot be a judgement on the overall value as we would have no idea how a person earning pounds would have found the price to be.
By Mr Hayes on 21/07/2015
As a holiday focussed on easy walking, gourmet dinners and luxurious accommodation, this ticked all the boxes. Beautiful country of the Cote D'Or, gorgeous little villages and towns and everywhere Burgundy wine production continuing all around you. All three hotels were superb. I walked in July 2015, so arrived somewhat dusty and sweaty at what are very upscale hotels. No problem at all (but worth reassuring guests it isn't an issue). Walking directions were generally good, with some issues flagged to Headwater in separate email. Just a few tweaks needed, and as it is the first year of this tour, some teething troubles expected.
If you want to seriously investigate wine, doing so during your day's walk is not really practical. I'd suggest researching before you go, possibly setting up cellar visits via Headwater, if they will do it, or knowing which vignerons you want to visit and then using your rest days to get along to see them. But you can just wing it and you can thoroughly enjoy this holiday if, like me, you know nothing about wine. It's a good place to start to learn.
Last but not least, I would single out Paul and Yolanta at Les Deux Chevres in Gevrey-Chambertin for wonderfully friendly advice, practical tips, suggestions and laid-back accommodation. If you want to know more about the area, its wine, history and so on, they are a mine of information.
ALAN HAYES, WEST LONDON, JULY 2015.
By Mr Hunter on 20/07/2015
An amazing time
By Mrs Stocks on 20/07/2015
A great holiday with varied walking options available, Village had great atmosphere and opportunities for shopping and sightseeing away from just walking. We extended our trip with 3 nights in Munich at the hotel recommended by Headwater which was a super place and gave us chance for a bit of culture and city life after the scenery!
By Ms Hole on 20/07/2015
Lovely quiet hotel in a small hamlet with good access to great walks and buses/ trains. Excellent food, the gala evening meal was particularly memorable. Good selection of wines and other drinks at a reasonable price. Nice indoor pool with excellent spa facilities.
By Mr Hurrell on 17/07/2015
Overall we really enjoyed it. However we were not quite prepared for the steepness of some of the walks. This is not down to Headwater but rather our own lack of research. The views were spectacular. We also felt that the times given for the length of each walk was rather optimistic even for us who enjoy walking in all terrains.
By Ms Rose on 17/07/2015
We had a fabulous time, beautiful weather, gorgeous alpine flowers and a hard enough walk to feel we had earned our delicious evening meals.
By Mr McPoland on 16/07/2015
The hotels were all very different, but uniformly good, and provision for Vegetarian Food was excellent. Austria is a spectacular country to walk in. Some parts of the walks were in my opinion rather more challenging than a 1 boot designation would imply, so it came as a bit of a surprise to my wife, who isn't a regular walker, but we coped. Way-marking is excellent, so the route notes were quite a bit redundant, and sometimes inaccurate or misleading. The rep gave us handwritten amendments. I would have thought in this day and age, it would be simple to keep a master copy of the notes up to date via the Internet, and only printed on demand, rather than as I assume, get an old copy from a stockpile which had been printed some time ago. These are minor niggles, and we both enjoyed the holiday very much.
By Mrs Walker on 16/07/2015
We had a very good room in hotel Jezero with 2 baloney's. However on the Saturday evening 13 June the hotel had a private function that consisted of very loud music right under our room which meant that we could not go to sleep until it was over. The music went on until 2.30 which is too late,.
By Ms Clark on 15/07/2015
Fantastic walking area if you like wild, remote stony terrain. Incredibly windy at times and also challenging steep downhill sections if these are not your forte! Superb coastal and inland scenery. Great to have suggested walks for free days especially as the weather wasn't really good enough for swimming and relaxing. The local taxi driver was great, carrying on the luggage and when we finished the last day's walking early we phoned him and he picked us up. He also helped us sort out an earlier train to Barcelona. We had the same reps in Tuscany last year and once again they were brilliant, providing extra route notes and e mailing changes. The initial briefing by phone worked well and we were delighted when they joined us for our last evening meal. They really go the extra mile to make things go smoothly. The hotels were all excellent and we liked the variety in the evening meal arrangement. Adding on 2 nights in Barcelona was the icing on the cake. The hotel there was of a lower standard, a very small room,but we did expect an ensuite room and not one with a bathroom down the corridor. We would have liked to have known this in advance and been given the chance to upgrade. Overall, a memorable holiday!
By Mrs Jacobs on 15/07/2015
Pleas read my document sent to Lisa copied to Tina James
By Mr Boyce on 15/07/2015
Country and scenery superb - a real eye-opener! Walking on the challenging side of '2 boot'. The longest walk was actually easier than some of the shorter ones due to the terrain. There are places to stop on the way, you should take advantage.
By Mrs Glover on 15/07/2015
Well organised trip that met all our expectations. New walking guides provided during trip as a result of changes to routes.
By Mr Tribe on 15/07/2015
Very good worth doing, may do it again, great food and beer, watch out for the mountains they are not the same as the hills in Kent.
By Mrs Grassie on 15/07/2015
I have never felt so relaxed going back to work! It was fantastic :))
By Ms Steenman-clark on 14/07/2015
The Chablais region is certainly very beautiful but with the excellent hotels in the valleys a lot of the walking was up and down farm/ski/access tracks or roads to the higher level, flower strewn, paths with the fantastic views. These tracks, especially in the heat we experienced, were quite brutal and did detract somewhat from the overall pleasure of the walks.
By Mr Shread on 14/07/2015
Excellent holiday based in a perfect location for walking. Local transport facilities (bus/train) were first class
By Ms Andrychowska on 14/07/2015
Hotel staff excellent. Train noise bad in rooms.
By Mr Langford on 13/07/2015
Excellent. From our arrival to departure our Rep Ross tailored our stay to suit what WE wanted. He really went the extra mile to sort any issues created by rail strikes and unusually hot weather. He was always on time ( in fact early). There was never a feeling of being rushed or hurried which made our holiday really great. He had also ensured that our directions for the walks were totally up to date and accurate.
The accomodation was always excellent as were the meals provided.
The highlight has to be our stay at Vermenton! Such attention to detail...amazing.
We will do another one next year.
By Mrs Johnson on 13/07/2015
A very interesting walk through small villages in Burgundy with the highlight being Vezelay. Auxerre is a lovely old town worthy of an extra day there.
By Pro Campbell on 13/07/2015
Walking in the Footsteps of St Francis was a gem of a walking holiday and we felt thoroughly refreshed by it . The walking was well paced and the guide notes excellent. The National Park was stunning with a variety of scenery and the two places we stayed in the park were absolutely gorgeous. Assisi was also a lovely city to visit. It was our first time holidaying with Headwater and we are already planning our next.
By Mr Wood on 13/07/2015
We like the freedom of walking independently with excellent meals at the end of the day and the convenience of the luggage being transported between hotels.
By Mrs Brown on 13/07/2015
Overall rate Slovenia Alps Adventure very highly. The Route notes need updating e.g Take the path to the right where the road changes from concrete to gravel. - In fact the path is where the road changes from concrete to tarmac - the tarmac has been there several years. One of many examples where the route notes were out of date. The route notes for Bovec to Kobarid directed us onto the road due to a land slip, the local guide told us the path was passable with care, we did not try this as we had both had bad backs prior to the trip and did not want any scrambling. However the other couple took the path and said the path was completely clear. The local guide should have known this. We walked 4 miles on a busy road because we were not told the path was clear.
By Mrs Keen on 13/07/2015
Wonderful walking in Switzerland as long as you have good weather. The packed lunches were the same every day better not to include in hol price.Also you forgot to inform us of the local taxes payable ar end of holiday,an extra 64 franks
By Ms Allison on 10/07/2015
I feel that the room we were offered was definitely not delux. We paid an extra Â£54 per night for a room that I would struggle to call standard. You could hardly move in the shower as the cubicle was so small. We took a cross country skiing holiday with Headwater a couple of years ago in Dobbiaco and the room we had was far superior and we had no extra money to pay. I was really disappointed. The hotel we stayed at was in an amazing setting. The food was good but I am vegetarian and had to have the same thing 3 times as there aren't that many alternatives.
By Mr Lewis on 08/07/2015
A beautiful but very popular and busy part of Italy. Seeing it by means of a walking holiday is an excellent way of minimising the experience of crowds and seeing parts that most tourists do not see. Many of the views are spectacular and some of the foot paths are not to be missed. The end of June is a hot time and walkers need to be able to cope with that. All of the hotels provided typically friendly Italian service.
By Mr Ford on 08/07/2015
Footsteps of St Francis (Self-Guided)
This was our first holiday with Headwater having previously used other well-known leading walking tours companies.
We couldnâ€™t fault the organization of Headwater both in the UK and the local rep Vlad. The walk notes were clear and precise without being to wordy. The amendment that Vlad recommended for the last day following the Roman Aqueduct was superb and good finish to the walking programme
The hotels were excellent the only slight downside was the Assisi hotel La Terraza where it was a 1Km outside of the town, the food there was good but certainly not up to the same standards as the other 3 hotels.
La Tavola dei Cavali at Satriano was an absolute delight it was welcoming, peaceful and gave us a most relaxing stay. the only noise was the sound of bees and birds.
Le Silve di Armenzano was also a delight with a most welcoming drink of cold water immediately on arrival after a very hot day of walking, a wonderful location to watch the setting sun whilst having dinner
La Bastiglia at Spello our hotel for the start and finish nights met the same standard as the previous two hotels with wonderful views from the Terrace.
We are already looking at other possible Headwater Holidays
Mike & Jean Ford
By Mr Buss on 08/07/2015
A superb location for walking and an excellent hotel - the staff were friendly and always very helpful. Travel arrangements - flights and car hire all went smoothly. Exactly what we had hoped for.
We also extended the car hire for a further three weeks and delayed our return flight for the same period. Headwater arranged this for us when we booked and everything went according to plan.
By Mrs Clark on 08/07/2015
This holiday was one of the best we have had.Tuscany was beautiful and the chance to see it on foot made all the difference. The hotels were terrific and the food amazing.We will be back next year.
By Mr Johnston on 07/07/2015
Excellent holiday. All arrangements worked well except initial briefing - see below. Local transfers were excellent.
By Mrs Richardson on 07/07/2015
It was unfortunate that, having made the booking for this holiday, when the maps and walking guides were forwarded to us, they had been incorrectly copied so that every even page was missing. It took a couple of phone calls to sort this out. Also took a bit of time to clarify travel arrangements to and from the airport. This made us feel a little vulnerable though, actually, the arrangements were absolutely spot on - all the taxis arrived on time and were of a very high standard. The representatives in Italy were exceptionally charming and helpful.
The description of the walks was a little misleading as some sections involved quite a lot of climbing and, in one case, scrambling down a rather precipitous, overgrown gully with loose rocks and stones presenting quite a challenge. The evening meal at the Capodimonte was dire, especially in comparison with the Punta Campanella, which was absolutely lovely. Breakfasts at the Casa Albertina were poor and I have marked the location as 'poor' because I thought it was harsh to expect your customers to climb all those steps to he hotel after the most challenging walk of the holiday involving, potentially, the descent of 1,000 steps through Positana at its conclusion.
You will note, however, that I would book with your company again, and am considering the cycle ride along the Danube for our next adventure! Your staff in the UK are, without exception, very charming. It was unfortunate that our walking guides were not complete at the outset but it was a wonderful holiday so thanks to everyone involved.
By Ms Whiteaker on 07/07/2015
The walking trip in Brittany was excellent. Our rep was brilliant, going out of his way to ensure we had everything we needed and more. The route notes were thorough and the walking itself was on lovely trails.
By Mrs Jenkins on 07/07/2015
Contrasting walks in a beautiful area of Switzerland. The two walks to the Oeschinensee and the Doldenhornhutte are particularly challenging with many steep or tricky paths often very narrow and across waterfalls or shale slopes. Essential to have a head for heights and walking poles. These however were the best walks with terrific views. Do the extension to the Daubensee walk as the views at the final destination are well with it. The Alfa Soleil Hotel is a good 3 star hotel and our junior suite was excellent and worth the upgrade. Our one complaint of the room would be the shower and the sudden change of temperature when running going from very cold to scorching and dangerously hot; we had to be be swift to move out of the range of the spray when this happened. Breakfast is not as varied as other Swiss hotels we have stayed at and there was a huge additional charge if you fancied eggs and bacon. The food overall was inconsistent and not up to expectation following all the reviews and varied from poor ( tough poached chicken and lamb curry one night) to very good on the barbecue evening. However, great value holiday overall for Switzerland which is very expensive. PS the house wine is very good and at 22 Swiss francs per 50cl, a bit of a bargain.
By Dr Patel on 07/07/2015
A tranquil location with panoramic scenery in the heart of rural Tuscany that is an excellent hub for some beautiful hikes. Deserted trails and an opportunity to walk back in time along Etruscan trails, vie cave, tombs and grottos. The hedgerows and fields are abundant with wild flowers under clear blue skies. Vivid images of the familiar profile of hilltop hamlets with their red tiles and iconic church towers and valleys green with vines and Cyprus trees will provide happy memories for years to come.
By Mr Fairweather on 07/07/2015
This was an excellent holiday where the standard of food and accommodation fully justified the description 'gastronomic'. The walks are interesting and quite varied with the combination of woodland, vineyards and picturesque villages, but it is a new route, and as it evolves I think that some improvements can be incorporated: Day 3 seemed a bit early for a free day and perhaps the amount of walking on tarmac could be reduced.
By Mr Gray on 07/07/2015
This is the perfect holiday in which to experience the grandeur of the Highlands while using a brand new, but sparsely populated, long distance trail. The accommodation en route is of the highest order and compares favourably with similar Headwater packages on the Continent. I sincerely hope it is a success as I would dearly love to repeat the exercise.
By Mrs Magnier on 07/07/2015
We were very happy with the holiday from the headwater point of view. Accomodation i would not be happy with.Compared to other places we visited in the area the level of english spoken in this hotel was very poor,even when we asked what something was on the menu ,the waitress didnt understand us .Thank you for the bottle of wine which we appreciated very much.the walking was superb and the guides provided for the walking were very good. Beautiful country and people were very friendly and most helpful.
By Mr Hutton on 07/07/2015
This is an excellent hikers holiday with well described routes and terrific scenery. On return the hotel and its chef is first class in providing the ideal evening.
By Ms Hopkins on 03/07/2015
It was a brilliant holiday - everything was well organised and went according to plan. The scenery was superb, the walks were more challenging than expected because of the extremely hot weather (38F one day!) but loads of shade and wonderful views helped us through. Our local rep was brilliant and there was more than enough information from Headwater for us to find interesting things to do on our rest days. All the accommodation was good but Villa Lussana was a holiday highlight. Thoroughly memorable. Thank you!
By Mr Murray on 03/07/2015
A really relaxing and enjoyable holiday giving us the opportunity to visit some lovely areas of Italy.
The Headwater representative was well informed and really helpful allowing us to enjoy our holiday to the full.
By Mr Boyce on 02/07/2015
Exceeded expectations, scenery gorgeous, hotel friendly and helpful staff
By Mr Strong on 02/07/2015
Beautiful region of France. Didn't see a soul whilst walking and the hotels were quiet which suited us! Representative was very friendly and helpful.
By Mr Bedford on 02/07/2015
Excellent. Location stunning. Views wonderful. Food, apart from one meal, great. Hotels good 3 stars. Local representative very helpful. Overall a most enjoyable, although tiring, holiday.
By Mrs Aitken on 02/07/2015
We walked through a beautiful quiet unknown part of Italy meeting friendly people in small hotels and rural towns and felt welcomed everywhere.
By Dr Cobner on 02/07/2015
The walking and travelling around the Dolomites was excellent. Unfortunately neither hotel was situated in a quiet location and mosy
y nights we were disturbed. In Toblach there were open air rock music festivals opposite the hotel on the first two nights and on the third night the railway company decided to carry out maintenance till 5am outside our room. We also had two days of gunfire from the nearby military firing range. The hotel room and service/food were,however, excellent.
Our room in Venice was situated overlooking the alleyway leading to the hotel. This was full of people all night and we did not get much sleep. The room itself was very comfortable and the staff very helpful.
By Mrs Hayward on 02/07/2015
Easy to use and inviting
By Mr Tattersall on 01/07/2015
The holiday was stress free, everything was as explained or advertised .
The walks were maybe tougher than we expected , but that is not a negative reflection on the holiday
We would definitely do another similar holiday, this was our 6th Headwater Holiday, but not our last
By Mrs Wright on 01/07/2015
Walking in Bavaria in June was just amazing. The wild flowers were beautiful to see in the meadows. Oberammergau is ideally situated with easy rail and bus access to the wider area.
By Mr Collins on 30/06/2015
A good mix of scenic, coastal, country and historic town locations for both walking and overnight stays. Introduced us to a lesser known area of Spain. While most of the walking had excellent scenery and moderate challenges, some sections were slightly tedious on tracks/roads rather than paths. However these were marked walking routes on the published maps, and it is difficult to see what alternatives were viable to get you to the next place of interest. No gain without pain! Walking instructions were excellent throughout.
By Mr Thomson on 30/06/2015
A very enjoyable holiday with taxing walks and great accommodation. In 30 degrees heat we found some of the hikes a little hard at our age.
By Mr Price on 30/06/2015
Excellent walking area with a wide variety of routes. We made great use of the local travel card included in our holiday which allowed us unlimited travel on both buses and trains anywhere throughout the Bolzano province.
By Mr Kendrick on 30/06/2015
Very good indeed. Great location; walks sufficiently (but not too) challenging. Great food. Sometimes bus service arrangements to walk start end points a bit fiddly (we were put off from one of them by this). Easyjet baggage drop and general service at Venice airport (as distinct from the flights themselves which were fine) very poor.
By Mrs Alsop on 29/06/2015
It is an excellent format - two nights in each place is just right and the distances and terrain were sufficiently challenging for us to feel we deserved the increasingly good food as we progressed through the walk.
By Mr Buckenham on 29/06/2015
I seem to have ticked 'excellent' just about every question; the reason being that we have rated this holiday amongst the best FIVE we have done in the last 18 or so years. The description 'Gastronomic Walk' just does not do the holiday justice....'MICHELIN' should be added!
By Ms Waddington on 24/06/2015
Wonderful walking trip - could definitely be done more challenging walking options outlined in route notes & more of the coatst covered. It really is a turquoise coast when the sun shines!
By Mr Shaw on 24/06/2015
This was our first visit to Sicily and we thought the Secrets of Sicily programme gave a fantastic introduction to the relatively unknown northwest of the island. We very much appreciated the inclusion of visits to Segesta and Erice en route to our second and third destinations.The great highlight was the walk, on the final full day, around Monte Cofano.
By Dr Simpson on 23/06/2015
One of the best Headwater holidays we have done. Croatia certainly more than lived up to our expectations. Everything about the holiday was excellent and the people there were universally warm and welcoming. A wonderful contrast between the hilltop towns of Motovun and Buzet and the classical seaside villas of Opatija. It will be difficult to better this holiday!
By Mr Boyd on 23/06/2015
Enjoyable walking in attractive countryside with plenty opportunity to visit historic places such as Dijon and Beaune, staying in remarkable small hotels, and eating amazing food and drinking some of the world's best wines.
By Mr Ball on 23/06/2015
Excellent local arrangements and facilities. Thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.
By Mrs McGaw on 23/06/2015
Wonderful holiday in beautiful surroundings. Good hotels each of which had their own character. Excellent walking notes. Our local reps Audrey and Chris were a very pleasant and helpful couple and they did a sterling job in a quiet but very efficient manner, we couldn't have asked for better!
By Mr Collingham on 23/06/2015
Well organised; great choice of places to stay with walking well directed and right amount of effort per day. The Camino is not the most beautiful route we have walked but communion with fellow travellers made it feel special.
Only comment would be O Coto. Finished short walk to Casa de la Somoza by lunch and really not much to do that afternoon. While the hotel was adequate it was not the sort of place you could amuse yourself in for an afternoon. The common parts were a bit gloomy. We went for a walk! that afternoon.
A pity about baggage handlers' strike in Madrid, main problem was that we had our walking poles taken from us in Stansted in spite of the fact that my husband had checked with Ryanair that we could get them through security. This is categorically not true. We had to store our poles in Stansted at cost to ourselves and buy poles in Leon.
By Mr Barraclough on 23/06/2015
Marvellous scenery, excellent hotel, notes and route signing very good.
By Mr Berzak on 23/06/2015
Excellent location and region for walking. Maps and route notes provided were really useful and accurate. Hotel was comfortable and clean with excellent food and a good wellness area which was not used at all by other guests at the time we were there. This was a bonus for us. As we were early in the season, suggested walks were not crowded but we are sure at peak times things could be different. Overall we had a great holiday and will use Headwater again for another similar trip.
By Mis Riley on 22/06/2015
We decided not to do the guided walk up Stromboli as we didn't feel we were fit enough to cope with the steepness, the ground conditions and the dark and it wouldn't be fair on the guide or other tourists. I felt this could be an excursion which could be optional as we couldn't really decide until we got there and saw the conditions. We did book an evening boat trip round the island instead, but this got cancelled because of the weather conditions. None of this spoiled our holiday - we just spent a day relaxing instead. The guide walk up Etna was fantastic and we felt quite proud that accomplished it without mishap and that we were probably the oldest couple in the group. Our guide, Salvo, was brilliant - please mention him in any correspondence.
The transportation from place to place was excellent as were the hotels. We didn't actually stay in Hotel Rocce Azzure but in their sister hotel nearby which was beautiful. Thank you Headwater for another wonderful holiday.
By Mr Whitehurst on 22/06/2015
The key to my holiday was the flexibility in booking the travel arrangements via Birmingham. This allowed me access to an excellent holiday using a local airport
By Ms Sampson on 19/06/2015
Thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience; a lovely lazy way of booking a really good holiday - everything is provided for and has been thought of. Excellent.
By Mr Bryant on 18/06/2015
Great holiday very much as described, good hotel, great food, nice walks.
By Mrs Kelly on 18/06/2015
This was our ninth holiday with you! The walking was fantastic, if a little arduous at times! A beautiful country, lovely people. We had a thoroughly enjoyable time, as ever! Many thanks!
By Mr Carter on 17/06/2015
This was our first holiday of this type and was not sure what to expect, the route notes given were easy to follow we were collected on time at airports/ train stations /hotels. The agents were excellent with a full briefing one in person and one over the phone and both came back to me with requests that I made for additional information.
The accommodation throughout the holiday was of a very high standard, all very clean and with excellent quality of food.
Well done Headwater we will have no problems in booking through you again.
Nick & Sue Carter
By Mrs Jenner on 17/06/2015
We enjoyed the walking, loved the hotel in Amalfi which was exclusive and liked the hotel in Positano.
However we were the only English amongst a large tour party of Germans in Marina del Cantone and the Hotel Capodimonte was ghastly, appalling, dreadful and full of low cost package holiday tourists and the dinner in the evening at the hotel made me feel closer to my grave.
By Dr Livsey on 17/06/2015
All went smoothly.
By Ms Birch on 17/06/2015
Beautiful countryside, it was lovely to see so many wild flowers and butterflies (we went at the end of May). There was a good range of walks, all challenging in their own way but with fantastic views as a reward. You do need a relatively good level of fitness as it is hilly and we,d recommend boots as suggested by Headwater as the tracks are very rocky in places. Our favourite location was Motovun, with it's cobbled streets and bars and restaurants overlooking the landscape below. There was little to do or see in Buzet, so make the most of the circular walk whilst you are there. We found all of the hotels to be of a very high standard and the service was good, the room we had in Hotel Sveti Jakov in Opatija was stunning and the hotel was in a lovely quiet part of the town.
By Mr Curwen on 17/06/2015
A superb holiday in stunningly beautiful countryside. Great walking conditions and routes through varied terrain, sometimes challenging and always rewarding. The hotels were first class and staff everywhere were friendly and helpful. The final days in Opatija were relaxing and the effect end to a great holiday. Thank you Headwater!
NB. We feel that the route notes for days 4 & 5 could do with adjustment as things appear to have changed on the ground. I would be happy to offer suggestions. Please advise how you would like these to be supplied.
By Mrs Crowther on 17/06/2015
Met our needs brilliantly. Superb scenery. High level of service and comfort.
By Dr Luton on 17/06/2015
Great walking on good paths. Excellent scenery and wonderful alpine flowers.
Consider Berne as a day off destination.
By Ms Gane on 17/06/2015
It was a beautiful location and we had some lovely walks and saw amazing flowers. The hotel owner who was supposed to give us some guidance was not as helpful as he could have been. He raced through some information on the first evening and gave us various passes not all of which he explained.After that, he told us about one bus route being unavailable and arranged for us to travel on it when it became available. However when we asked questions subsequently, in particular if a route was Ok, he said it was up to us if we went on it. In fact it was challenging with some landslides on steep mountainside and frozen snow partially covering a fast-flowing stream through which we had to paddle.
The breakfast and packed lunches were great. Dinner was positively gourmet. (Whisper it low, but we would have preferred something simpler with fewer courses so that there was time for a walk afterwards). Mark-ups on the wine in the restaurant were enormous. We were also rather startled to be charged for tap water every night.
By Mr Marritt on 17/06/2015
Very good overall. Rating of 2+ is right because some parts were quite tough.
Please do not quote surname in any promotional material
By Mrs McRill on 17/06/2015
I have been travelling regularly with Headwater for many years. This holiday certainly came up to expectations and I can recommend it wholeheartedly, it was one of the best. Rachel and Peter (our reps) were extremely helpful, always positive and cheerful, a great bonus; the temperature was higher than we had expected for the first week in June, hovering around 30'C and we were able to shorten our walks thanks to their efforts. The hotels were very spacious and comfortable and the food and wine were excellent, truly a gastronomic feast, apart from one restaurant which didn't match the high standard set by the rest of this holiday. Overall this was a great holiday.
By Mrs Owen-jones on 17/06/2015
Beautiful area for walking and excellent food and wine.
By Mr Hobbs on 17/06/2015
The advertised holiday - gastronomic Barolo walk - sounded rather grand, but appealed as a special birthday present - a walk between nice restaurants in a pleasant part of the world with decent hotels in which to stay over. We were a little unsure about dress code and level of difficulty in the walks before we set off.
Upon being met by our tour guides, Peter and Rachel, we were soon reassured that the holiday would be informal and enjoyable. Our first hotel - Villa d'Amelia - was absolutely fantastic in every way starting with the welcome by the reception staff, the standard of the room and the facilities (including an outdoor heated pool, sauna and steam rooms). The restaurant was on another level - a Michelin 1 star - that delivered great food with special service with an emphasis on the customer as star of the show. This standard set the bar high for the rest of the holiday and our next port of call, after our first walking day, was in Grinzane Cavour staying for 2 nights at an excellent bed and breakfast with outstanding views and eating within the castle at another Michelin standard restaurant (although not yet awarded the coveted star); service here was brilliant - the chef and his wife ran the show with the help of 2 more serving staff and a kitchen brigade. At the end of an exquisite tasting menu with paired wines, the chef introduced himself to each table. His wife was charm itself and chatted and responded to our questions and comments throughout the 2 meals in a very engaging manner.
The rest of the holiday comprised 2 nights in Castiglione Falletto and 2 nights in Monforte d'Alba - both at excellent hotels in brilliant locations - and a final night returned to the Casa d'Ameila. Food could not generally compare with the first three nights, although the restaurant l'Argaj in Castiglione Falletto produced wonderful food in a setting looking out towards Barolo that would be hard to better.
Overall this was a brilliant holiday. The walking was just enough to make one ready for another (!) fine dining experience but not enough to be physically draining. Staying 2 nights in 3 of the locations proved to be a great idea - preventing the need to pack everything up every day and allowing time to appreciate the locality as well as giving an option for a circular walk or resting on the second day.
If you are reasonably fit and active and you like good wine and fine food then this would be a great holiday and my wife and I would thoroughly recommend it. Some of the walking instructions were ambiguous - resulting in a few additional miles being walked - and the terrain would be challenging underfoot in places if wet. We walked at the end of May and the heat on some days was strong; in July or August I can imagine walking being hard work and thirst inducing..
By Mr Beck on 17/06/2015
Thank you, Headwater: we would never have thought of visiting Bermuda if your brochure had not suggested it as a base for a walking holiday, and we would have missed a treat. A delightful destination, with friendly and helpful people, a comfortable hotel in an attractive beach-side setting, some lovely walks along the old railway trail and the stunning coastline, and a range of places to visit and learn about Bermuda's fascinating history, customs and society.
The accessibility of all parts of the island and its excellent (and entertaining) bus and ferry service make it easy to 'pick and mix' elements of the recommended walking routes. We made full use of this flexibility so we could spend time in some of the museums and historic houses that help bring Bermuda's rich history and culture to life, as well as exploring the various nature reserves that feature in some of the walks.
Highly recommended (and we found May a perfect time to go - warmth and stunning flora).
By Mrs Little on 17/06/2015
Generally very good.
By Mr Davis on 17/06/2015
A walking holiday visiting several locations in one area. All the planning, hotels, transport etc is done for you so you can concentrate on the walks and enjoying yourself. Hotels and food very good.
The one problem we had was some glass on the floor in the bathroom at the Quinta de Belle Vist. Eventually this was cleared up thoroughly.
Minibus driver (lady) at Quinta de Furao was particularly helpful and friendly.
By Mr Robinson on 17/06/2015
We both found this trip very enjoyable. The walking is relatively easy but very rewarding, and remarkably varied. The accommodation was top rate with good quality meals and excellent service. The location of Quinta do Furao is really great. Taxi collections and drop offs were faultless. In fact the whole trip from leaving home to returning was just perfect. One of our favourite trips.
By Mis Monteith on 17/06/2015
Very enjoyable introduction to North West Sicily and the Egadi islands. Each location was full of character and accommodation was attractive and comfortable. Particularly enjoyed accommodation near San Vito where owner Daniela is a charming and very welcoming host and gave us a great introduction to Sicilian food. Beautiful views on the walks, especially in Zingaro nature reserve and on Marettimo. High temperature and very strong wind made walk around Monte Cofano a bit of an endurance walk at the end. However, lemon granitas in cafÃ© at the pick up point and paddle in sea helped recovery.
By Mrs Sheardown on 17/06/2015
It was a lovely holiday and we saw lots of things that visitors to the region wouldn't normally see. However, we feel that you need to be fit to undertake it. We are used to walking in the Peak District but still found some of the days quite challenging. We travelled in May when the weather was reasonably warm for most of the week. We feel that later in the summer when the weather was hot the walking would have been very hard in places where there wasn't shade.
By Mr Dunn on 17/06/2015
A really excellent holiday in a relatively unknown but attractive location, with a superb hotel and a very helpful and knowledgeable hostess, and a good choice of walks. But for goodness sake improve the return directions to the airport - saying 'reverse the outward route' is hopelessly inadequate for negotiating the motorways of Madrid!
By Mrs Clifton on 17/06/2015
A holiday for not-too-serious walkers but definitely one for foodies.
By Mrs Main on 17/06/2015
This holiday took us to a lovely area that we'd never have known about if we'd not come across it through the Headwater website.We wondered how we'd cope with our first mobile holiday, but it all went so smoothly that we had no problems; rather, we found it interesting to stay in 6 very different hotels in 9 nights! Having read other comments and seen the weather forecast, we went prepared for all conditions. Yes, it rained a bit, but it was warm rain without wind - nothing like the Scottish variety and we were lent a giant Italian umbrella in Este for our visit to the market and the rest of this lovely wee town. Because of the Giro d'Italia our first [non walking] day was a bit disrupted but Sarah was able to drop us off in TÃ©olo to see the race [and it's vast entourage] go by. As my husband is a very keen cyclist who normally watches this on TV at home, this was a real treat and much appreciated. We also appreciated that one of her first acts on collecting us from Vicenza station was to offer us each a bottle of chilled water.
By Mr Raffay on 17/06/2015
The holiday exceeded our expectations. Our rep, Sarah, was extremely helpful and friendly. We enjoyed discovering this beautiful part of Italy.
By Mr Bauld on 17/06/2015
Excellent. We enjoyed the combination of great walks during our peaceful relaxing stay at Ta Cenc on Gozo and our extra nights at the Phoenicia enabling us to explore the fascinating city of Valletta.
By Mr Woodgate on 17/06/2015
My 2nd camino walk holiday, a different personal experience but excellent, Galicia & Spain at its very best, Headwater organisation & bag moving en route is superb hassle & worry free,
By Mr Gingell on 17/06/2015
A most enjoyable week spent on a delightful, unspoilt island with comfortable accommodation and varied and interesting walking opportunities.
Driving on the smaller roads in Menorca can be challenging at times, particularly the fairly long stretch between Ciutadella and the hotel which is narrow,
winding and lined with unforgiving limestone walls - make sure you insure your hire car excess!
Ciutadella is a delightful town to explore and the Menorcan people are charming and very helpful to visitors.
By Mr Sutherland on 17/06/2015
Excellent accommodation and staff. Food variable from excellent (breakfast mainly) to indescribably bad for some meals/courses in the evening. English translations of menus were unhelpful. ('Meat Soup' turned out to be a bowl of pasta shells in a chicken stock. Marinated fish was a mystery). Wines excellent. Walks were great.
Dear Mr & Mrs Sutherland,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday feedback. We were pleased to see that you had an enjoyable holiday overall. Although, we are sorry to see that you did not enjoy the meals at dinner. Ordinarily, this hotel receives good feedback in this area, however, we realise that we cannot allow our standards to slip, and therefore we will monitor the feedback we receive for the meals to ensure we are delivering the high standards our customers have come to expect.
Thank you for highlighting this feedback to us.
We would like to thank you for traveling with Headwater and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater customer service
By Mrs Cockburn on 16/06/2015
Fabulous holiday in great location. Walking was delightful. Accommodation was brilliant - only downside was the food where there was little if any choice and it was not to our taste.
By Mr O'Brien on 15/06/2015
Excellent holiday,warm welcome everywhere. Walks were lovely and we were very fortunate to have great weather!
By Mr Rodesano on 15/06/2015
This was an excellent varied walk and well constructed taking in coastal paths, forest and river scenes and the beaches were superb.
By Mr Hamilton on 15/06/2015
We had a fabulous trip in perfect weather. Ross the Rep was first class. He goes the extra mile , is particular on detail and plans ahead.
The rating for the walks is right, not as testing as our usual 2 boot but with gentle climbs to give interest and the spectacular views. Thank you and thank Ross.
By Mr Brown on 15/06/2015
Walking around Assisi there is great countryside with wonderful views in a very quiet area. Eating a picnic at about 1000m at Refugio Maddonna della Spella with great views all around was a wonderful reward for the strenuous walk to get there.
By Mr McLeod on 15/06/2015
Accommodation etc extremely good. Hilltop villages attractive although deserted.
The walking through vineyards does become a little repetitive, but last day walking through woods was more interesting.
By Mr Dunbar on 15/06/2015
Good holiday which did exactly as stated. Good food, good wines and walks mainly through vines. Lovely area and villages.
By Mrs Gilliard on 15/06/2015
Varied walking in beautiful locations. Lived up to descriptions in the brochure. Lovely holiday.
By Mrs Moran on 15/06/2015
It was a very relaxing holiday and the Ta Cenc hotel was fabulous.
By Mrs Lawrence on 15/06/2015
A superb holiday experience that we will always remember. Headwater's advice & organisation was faultless.
By Mrs Preshaw on 15/06/2015
Another good Headwater holiday. We loved the island, the walking and swimming in the sea, but should have gone in May, June was a bit too hot for us and we were surprised how busy the beaches were. It was different getting a car at the airport and driving ourselves to the hotel and, once we had learned how to negotiate the narrow roads to and from the hotel, we loved having the opportunity to explore more of the island and plan our own sightseeing each day in addition to the walks. The hotel is a gem and being able to return to this tranquil country retreat each day and relax on your own terrace or swim in the pool before going for dinner made the holiday for us. The accommodation, food and service were all excellent. There was so much choice for breakfast including local cakes and pastries and in the evenings we enjoyed a good selection of Menorcan dishes served by friendly, attentive and helpful staff.
By Mrs Triger on 11/06/2015
This was our second visit to the Alfa Soleil in Kandersteg. We were incredibly fortunate to receive a double upgrade to their new Loft apartment!! We had booked a new junior suite and we believe we were given this because there were a large party of elderly people staying and possibly some of them had booked the Loft, only to find there was no lift. This really made our week's stay as it was spacious and beautifully furnished giving us room to spread out and to also enjoy the enormous terrace with views all round of the mountains.The weather held up every single day and what with this, and the excellent food provided by Nico, we could not have had a more enjoyable stay.
By Mr Morrison on 11/06/2015
From butterfly filled valleys to dramatic cliff tops with storks soaring overhead - this fabulous holiday certainly showed us the 'Contrasts of the Costa Vicentina.' Every step of the way was a delight. Would definitely recommend it. As for Frank's Barranco da Estrada ... what a magical discovery!
By Mr Masterman on 11/06/2015
This was a varied and fairly novel trip which took us up three volcanoes and introduced us to the delightful Aeolian islands. The only things that marred it were the delay at Milazzo (referred to above), the food at Hotel Giardino sul Mare - which reminded me of boarding school meals in the 1950s and simply wasn't good enough - and the fact that the Hotel del Corso in Taormina, whilst run by a delightful and helpful family, is in the Main Street and very noisy at night meaning we were frequently woken by late night revellers. We suggest you offer an upgrade at the Excelsior Hotel, which is in a superb position and not that much more expensive. And has a pool!
We also wish to point out that there is no need to be picked up at 8 am for the Etna trip as we then had to wait for one and a half hours at the Rifugio as the guided climb didn't leave until 10.30 - and,we were told, always has done. Your local reps did not appear to have any experience of our itinerary or of the Etna tour and were not really able to answer our questions satisfactorily.
By Mrs Napier on 11/06/2015
Choice of venue for walking very good. Notes extremely helpful, reps very good with local information. They were also very helpful when needed to help with a blistered foot on a bank holiday.
By Mrs Senior on 09/06/2015
All the arrangements worked well, the route guides were, with one or two minor wrinkles, very clear and accurate, the maps and information were good, the drivers always turned up on time. The hotel in Sorrento was very centrally placed and convenient for the train station and the ferry terminal, which was important to us.
By Mr Brook on 09/06/2015
Need to look carefully at transit times in Frankfurt. Did not like eating in a separate dining room in Hotel Zur Post - the service in this restaurant was very slow so much so that the waitresses apologised to us!!!
However these are minor details and generally the holiday was very good.
By Mrs Carrington-bro on 09/06/2015
We had a wonderful week away, we enjoyed being able to sightsee in Assisi and then to escape into the beautiful countryside where we saw hardly any walkers and few cars. We thought that the 2 boot grading was accurate, there were some uphills that made us feel that we had deserved our dinner - there were only a couple of stretches of steepish downhill. This was our first self guided walking holiday and we found the notes and map provided excellent - we were glad that we took our rep's advice of an alternative route on the last day - going to Collapino and having lunch at the Taverna di Silvestro and then following the path of the Roman aqueduct back to Spello - a really good end to the walk. The scenery along all of the route was pretty but the last morning was spectacular with a wonderful panoramic view. The hotels were well chosen and we enjoyed the variety between them. La Terraza was not in the same league as the other 3, but the staff were very friendly and whilst the food was not 'gormet' it felt 'honest', we would have preferred to stay right in Assisi but appreciate the appeal of a swimming pool and also delivering suitcases to the middle of Assisi would probably pose a challenge for the Headwater rep. We dined extremely well at our other 3 hotels and particularly enjoyed our stay at Le Silve with its tranquil setting and lovely views. Our top tip for packed lunches is the Bottega dei Sapori in Assisi's main square where our sandwiches were made to order with delicious ingredients from the owner's farm. Our only regret was that we didn't have time to add on a day to the holiday and visit Perugia.
Ann and Nigel Carrington Brook
By Mr Bradburn on 09/06/2015
Fabulous combination of hard exercise, exploration, good food and wine.
By Mr Martin on 09/06/2015
A unique experience that gave great opportunities to see parts of the country that we might not see if we were traveling independently. Following the route notes gives you the confidence to venture further, knowing that you could then get back to your route. Having a rep at the end of the phone just in case anything went wrong gave us a sense of safety and security and proved invaluable when I was unable to walk on the final day.
By Mr Small on 09/06/2015
Casa Rural santa maria-would have been helpful to know that he would pick up from the town as the extra km was not good on a v hot day.La Posada de Muriel-the hosts had changed! The breakfast of one piece of toast was not enough for a long walk and certainly could not be described as a buffet! Pazo Santa Maria-should have informed us of the most direct way to get to it as it is also a bit out and at least a 20min walk from the track as described.Rectoral de Lestedo-it would have been very helpful to have known that there was no option of drinks(tea, coffee or anything else for the three hours before the meal,which was poor.It would be useful to suggest that walkers go into the cafe about a km before the accommodation as going back doesn't seem sensible and we were ok with water (from the tap)
By Mrs Ramsell on 09/06/2015
Interesting and active. Enjoyment of meals could be improved by more choices on the menu(at least three including salads). If necessary in a smallish establishment these could be pre-booked in the morning.
HW selection of hotels is VERY GOOD and we always enjoy their slightly off beat locations and warm atmosphere. We know that other HW guests will be like -minded people we can engage in friendly conversation and exchange anecdotes about each walk with in the evenings.
By Mr Burton on 08/06/2015
Be aware of possible High wind disruption on Island
By Mr Duggleby on 05/06/2015
An excellent walking holiday in an undiscovered and little known part of Italy.The village of Palazzuolo is a delight and the hotel wonderful.Walks are fairly tough and you need to be prepared. Walking poles were essential.
By Mr Dane on 29/05/2015
We were lucky with the weather. This area of Tuscany is a delight, unspoilt with hardly a tourist insight. The walks took us through some spectacular scenery and the route directions ( apart from those from the airport) were accurate and easy to follow.
By Mr Mellowsfacer on 29/05/2015
We all thoroughly enjoyed this well constructed, luxurious walking holiday. Piedmont is a stunning region with few tourists and the best food and wine we have ever tasted throughout Italy. The hotels, restaurants and walks selected exemplified the high quality of the area and overall was excellent value for money.
Thank you so much to Pete and Rachel - they couldn't do enough to make sure our holiday went smoothly and were so enthusiastic and friendly.
By Mrs Moxham on 29/05/2015
This is a classic walk which also includes extra interest such as a tour of Leon and the ability, due to transfers, to stay in some lovely establishments. This part of Spain is very beautiful and we walked through lovely little villages and farms. The flowers, particularly on the first day, along the way were stunning. Lots of places to get snacks and drinks. The Camino is so well signposted that there is very little need to consult notes and maps so it is easy to enjoy the walking.
By Mr Plumb on 29/05/2015
Although we had to look after ourselves the notes and guidance we were given were excellent. Sensible notes about our airport arrival, car hire, hotel, and walks told us everything we needed to know.
By Mr Huddart on 28/05/2015
The warmth of the welcome at El Milano Real was exceptional. Teresa was knowledgeable and enthusiastic about the area and the walks. She advised us about matching walks to the weather. The food was outstanding in quality and presentation. The route notes were exceptionally accurate. This was one of our best walking holidays ever.
By Mr Fennell on 28/05/2015
A very enjoyable experience overall; the hotel is very comfortable and the food is first class, but some of the directions for walking in the quarry areas in the west of the island are wrong or inadequately explained, so some trial and error was involved.
By Mrs MacE on 22/05/2015
Good walking with excellent notes. Excellent accommodation. Helpful local rep. Perhaps overpriced.
By Mr Allen on 21/05/2015
It was a great holiday, in a friendly and relaxed country, thank you. Having gone from the tranquil hills & lakes to the sparkling cliffs & sea we understand the full significance of 'Contrasts..' in the title. Particular thanks to Nelson the taxi driver who looked after our transfers in a very helpful and reliable manner.
By Mrs Bishop on 21/05/2015
Beautiful location, average breakfasts, excellent evening meals although limited menu.
By Mr Jackson on 18/05/2015
First time and we loved it.
By Mr Mitchell on 18/05/2015
Delightful walking week in very pleasant hotel.
By Mr Adler on 14/05/2015
Wonderful walks and spectacular views.
By Ms Elliott on 13/05/2015
This was the first holiday of this type that we have taken. I have had some health issues so was concerned that this might be a problem, but there was complete flexibility regarding which walks we could do, and the grading of the walks was so accurate, that this simply wasn't an issue. The hotel was really lovely, the briefing from our holiday rep was extremely useful, and all the travel arrangements worked perfectly. We are very impressed and are hoping to be able to take another holiday with Headwater in the Autumn.
By Mr Goodall on 13/05/2015
lovely hotel, beautiful location and scenery, reasonably demanding walks.
By Mr Williams on 12/05/2015
Very good holiday, we were made to feel very welcome at the hotel El Milano Real. Good mixture of walking options, some fairly challenging. Worth visiting the south side of the Sierra de Gredos for quite different climate and flora.
By Mr Newmarch on 12/05/2015
A great week from start to finish. Excellent hotel. In particular Teresa the hotel owner, whose local knowledge, weather reports and enthusiasm were invaluable. A beautiful location to explore with varied and interesting walks.
By Mr Mottram on 12/05/2015
Very friendly and helpful staff at the Hotel who took an interest on what we did each day. Delightful scenery, good weather and interesting walks at thee right level of difficulty.
By Ms Glass on 08/05/2015
Our walking holiday in Portugal was a delight. Everything worked so well and the area is outstandingly beautiful particularly in April with so many spring flowers in bloom. I would highly recommend this region/ holiday.
By Mr Cameron on 07/05/2015
Excellent holiday and a lovely area of Spain with great food and wine
By Mr Edwards on 07/05/2015
The holiday was well planned and organised but, because we were in one hotel, we had the flexibility to change the order of the walks to suit ourselves. This meant no pressure to be at a certain place by a certain time - very relaxing.
By Mrs Darwin on 05/05/2015
Wonderful location with excellent and varied walks; lots of interesting birds and flowers; the hotel observatory was a bonus. Teresa's local knowledge and advice were excellent
By Mr Smith on 05/05/2015
A really good holiday. Excellent Hotel and walking in a very quiet area. Will email some more detailed commets direct.
By Mrs Greenhill on 29/04/2015
Walking in Bermuda was described well in the brochure and ideal for those of us who don't want a sun/beach /pool holiday. The bus/ferry service was excellent for getting around either before walking or after, we sometimes split the walk over 2 days as we stayed an extra 3 days and decided that to go to the end point (often a sightseeing place) and walk back, rather than start by walking. Everyone was very friendly and willing to show us the way if we were unsure. The maps and the guide notes were good. We added in going on the glass bottom boat and swimmimg with the dolphins as extras but readily available.
By Mr Beal on 28/04/2015
On our holiday we found the attention to detail and the help from the reps was outstanding. The detailed route notes in particular were very helpful and made the walking a pleasure. We will definitely travel with Headwater again.
By Mrs Lay on 21/04/2015
The weather was unusually cold and very windy, and there was no heating in the Marettimo Residence, but a heater was supplied at Baglio la Luna. Even so, we sat in bed in the evenings in our fleeces to keep warm, playing scrabble.
After the final walk,which took less time than expected, no facilities were open in the village of Cornino (not even the public conveniences). When he arrived, our lovely taxi driver Nicola drove us straight to San Vito Lo Capo so we could find a coffee and a desperately-needed loo. Full marks to Nicola for help and service throughout the trip; he even carried our bags up to the 2nd floor B&B in Trapani. (The amazing emergency B&B was like being on a set in an episode of Inspector Montalbano - a surprise addition to the holiday.)
The walks were enjoyable, but some of the paths on Marettimo and at Monte Cofano had been eroded by water over the winter and consisted mainly of loose fallen rocks of random sizes. Sticks are very much needed, especially for descents.
There are many dogs wandering around in this area of Sicily; we were not attacked at all, and one followed us all day on our walk to the Semaforo. We could only reward him with a drink of water, poured into a plastic carrier bag, in a hole in the ground at the picnic site. However, the dogs leave poo everywhere, so you need to watch your step!
Dear Mrs Lay,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire and for your constructive feedback. Please be assured that all of the feedback we receive, whether complimentary or critical, is valuable in helping us to continue to improve and develop our holidays for the future and is always well received.
Firstly, I was sorry to see the weather was unseasonable cooler than you had expected, although, despite the colder temperatures, we were happy to see this did not deter you from making the most of your holiday overall.
We were also pleased to see you found the walks enjoyable, and would like to thank you for your feedback regarding the winter erosion on a couple of the paths, this feedback has been passed on to our local agent, they are in the process of checking all of the routes, so will make this area a priority. We have also passed on your complimentary feedback regarding Nicola, our agent will ensure this is passed on, I am sure Nicola will be delighted to hear you appreciated his efforts.
Thank you also for your feedback regarding the local dogs. Whilst we appreciate, they did not cause you any bother, it would be useful to ascertain which area this occurred in, so we can report it to the local comune. (I will telephone you directly for this information).
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 Jarvis on 20/04/2015
Despite initial concerns with hydrofoil sailing we had an excellent holiday. The highlights of which were the Stromboli evening walk and the Mount Etna walk too. On both of these walks our guides were knowledgeable and friendly. I am not keen on heights but the Stromboli walk is fine and very safe so please don't be put off by the warning in the brochure as I nearly was! I would also recommend doing the first Stromboli walk on the day you arrive as there is a bit of climbing and you may not want to do both on the same day if it is very hot, unless you are super fit of course! The Esso petrol station on Lipari no longer exists in the main harbour, it has been replaced by a tarmac triangle on which sits a pretty orange and white boat, the bus stop is opposite this. When we were in Taormina one of the paths up to Castelmola was also closed because the cliff face was being netted to make it safe, we had to retrace our steps and go via the road, not sure how long this will be the case though as there was a lot of netting in place already on our visit. it was however well worth the detour for the amazing views.
By Mrs Tuck on 20/04/2015
Excellent holiday, Gozo in the spring is a great place to have a walking holiday. The hotel is first class, very welcoming and good service and food
By Ms Thornton on 17/04/2015
My fourth Headwater walking holiday but the first based in one place. Loved the small, friendly hotel, and the flexibility to chose our walks according to mood, weather and stamina. Also the chance to take day trips to Cordoba and Granada.
By Mrs Corrie on 17/04/2015
It was a great holiday as we were a group of 7,made up from friends for a 70th birthday celebration.The walking was the hardest I have ever done(I am 72 and fit) but it was great fun and a real sense of achievement at the end of each day.
By Mrs Peniket on 13/04/2015
We felt the walks were well planned and the hotels well chosen. We thought Eduardo Dias should have been more informative. On day 6 directions were inaccurate. Second para on Day 6 Camacha to Funchal at a ' T-junction of paths' we should have turned left, not right as indicated in the notes. Also other inaccuracies. At Serra Golf we booked a double room and were given a twin.
By Mr Stephens on 13/04/2015
Ideal for walking in more natural and unspoilt areas with good standard of accommodation. Warm and mainly dry weather made the walking very enjoyable although be prepared for windy spells. The importance of tourism to the area came across in the warm welcome we received from most of the Portuguese. Our introduction to the area by the Headwater rep. Tony Lewis was invaluable and his walking notes made navigation easy. Both Tony and Ludmilla made the holiday appear seamless in its organisation and they were very friendly and supportive.
By Mr Menzies on 10/04/2015
This is the third holiday we have had with Headwater and was the best yet. Tony could not have been more helpful and is clearly a man who loves his work. The walks were all superb with a huge variety of scenery. The notes were very clear and made it is easy to find our way. The accommodation was all to a high standard. Pedralva is a real gem and we were sorry to leave such an away from it all location. Choice of food for dinner at Memmo Baleeira was a bit limited unless you like pizza but they made up for this with the most superb breakfast choice. We also had the restaurant virtually to ourselves on the first night but on our return on Good Friday it was packed out with families. Quite a contrast.
By Mrs Barber on 09/04/2015
Excellent holiday with good and varied walks and lots of interesting limestone scenery. Hotel was a welcoming base with friendly helpful staff and lovely food.
By Mr Crook on 09/04/2015
Much prefer guided walking holidays - I could have put together this package myself.We got lost a few times as the island is very well signposted and it would help if there was a few suggestions where you could go to the toilet and eat/drink.On one of the walks it should be emphasised you need to take a packed lunch.The hotel though excellent in many ways had dinner too late[7pm onwards] which meant you couldnt go anywhere else say for a folk evening or pub quiz because they started about 7.30.As the hotel didn't have anything on in the evenings unless you missed dinner[which we did] you were a bit trapped at the hotel.The rep didn't make any suggestions as to what was on in other locations - the pub quiz on Friday in Xlendi was really good and there are some excellent restaurants there to eat.
By Mrs Conaghan on 02/04/2015
We really enjoyed our holiday with you. We didn't meet our rep which was unfortunate ( he was unwell) . I had hoped that he may contact us later in the week. We followed all the walks which we enjoyed. We both thought that the Island was rather more suburban than rural. Really enjoyed the bus trips and Bermuda.
By Mrs Lecutier on 30/03/2015
We realised that one boot is probably our level. We consider ourselves to be reasonably fit. However that is reasonably fit for a 64 and 68 yr old!We found the walks that we did very demanding and it took us a lot longer.Maybe the memory is very selective but I don't remember the 2 boot walks in Majorca being as strenuous. The weather was also against us so we only managed to walk for 2 1/2 days. The moving on day we decided to have a day off . In fact when we reached the Teide National Park it was1 deg C and snowing. The car in front was struggling to move forward and skidding in the middle of the road. After a while we realised we were not able to continue as he was skidding and sliding back nearer us. We carefully did an almost 18 point turn and descended back to the coast! Incredibly as we travelled the coast road to Garachico it was 21 deg C in one area.
By Mis Pearson on 30/03/2015
We felt that the reps Tony and Ludmilla were excellent and helpful at all times. They are great ambassadors for Headwater.
We were disappointed with the evening meal offered at the Hotel Memmo Baleeira. The service was slow, the food cold and over seasoned for our tastes. We found an excellent alternative restaurant in the town and went there on our last night. We would have preferred to have had an 'eat out' option in Sagres rather than having the evening meal included.
By Mr Sledge on 13/03/2015
Good news !
By Mr Steinbock on 11/03/2015
Lovely island with great walks. Eating and drinking out can be expensive
By Mr Britton on 09/03/2015
The Two Boots rating was optimistic - this was markedly harder and rougher than our previous Two Boots holidays. The length of the drives to the first two walks was excessive - perhaps a hotel can be found nearer the Anaga peninsula?The Las Casas de Afur walk was very slippery on the descent, not a good way to start the tour! Various paths in the Los Organos woods are closed at present, so we had to create our own walk. The parking for the Masca Ridge walk was very congested - an alternative would be useful. It all came together at the end of the week, with excellent weather on the last three days, and Garachico is a very appealing resort.
By Mrs Robertson on 06/03/2015
Although we are very fit over 60s we all found the walks tougher than expected due to rocky and steep terrain, damp weather making surfaces slippery and precipitous paths. We found walking poles to be essential especially on slippery descents. Scenery spectacular as was flora and fauna.
By Mr Walker on 03/03/2015
Bermuda was excellent
Costa Rica was a rushed experience rather than a holiday; there was too much road walking!
We were disappointed with the Flora content
By Dr Foley on 03/03/2015
Walking the Algarve's Wild West is a lovely break in the dull winter months of Northern Europe. Wild flowers, blue skies, dramatic coastal walks, great food and wine make this an ideal, well-planned short holiday.
By Mr Cunnah on 02/03/2015
It was as described and very well organised and thought through
By Mrs Sodring on 25/02/2015
Although neither of us was fit enough for the steep climbs (we had both had bad attacks of flu for the previous month) we had a great time. A few notes : Day 2 - fabulous flowers on the mountain! the fences have been repaired, newly sorted path from cafÃ© to old building with boards along the way for enjoyment of all. Also - all roads from bottom to top have been resurfaced and were perfect (no bumps and edges clearly marked). Day 3 - Rather slippery path down through woods - goats had previously slid down making some sections slightly difficult, otherwise great walk, just caught the 15.45 bus by one minute! Day 4 - it should have been a wonderful drive but we drove in in almost white-out! then couldn't find the start of the walk in the forest (along with many others) however, we did a short walk and then enjoyed locally caught trout in the cafÃ©. Day 5 - A very cold, foggy day so decided not to climb the steep mountain but to take the car to the top and have a short walk from there. Enjoyed lunch at the hostelry up to along with many other walking parties. Day 6 - wonderful weather and fabulous Masca ridge walk (we didn't bother to descend to the view points but stayed up top in the sunshine to enjoy our picnic). Day 7 - Long but interesting drive to Tiede where we began the suggested walk but finally decided to take the gondola to the top station : perfect weather and the views were amazing! Having only recently climbed Etna, it was so worth while going up top and seeing all the different colours of rock etc as opposed to Etna's grim black.
We wished we had had more time to explore Garachico and will return there and the surrounding areas of Tenerife in future. Many of the villages have such beautiful architecture and we would like to try the really 'local looking' restaurants where we believe we could try even more local dishes than those served by the more European establishments.
By Mr Patterson on 13/02/2015
An enjoyable holiday but far too much car travel (often on narrow mountain roads) for the amount of walking. It is perhaps a little too early in the year for this destination as the weather was quite wintery with low clouds on the mountain paths.
By Mrs Hills on 13/02/2015
The walking aspect of the holiday was great but the Coco Reef was a disappointment. The hotel needs to be refurbished and better maintained and the main hotel receptionist who was on duty during our stay was disinterested to the point of rudeness. Bermuda in the winter is an ideal walking holiday destination, but visitors need to be ready for a virtually empty hotel with a skeleton staff.
Dear Mrs Hills,
Thank you for taking the time to provide your post-holiday feedback, it was great to see that you enjoyed the walking aspect of your holiday. Although, we were surprised to read of your disappointment with the Coco Reef. Ordinarily this hotel receives positive feedback. However, we realise that we cannot afford to let our high standards of accommodation and service slip, and have discussed your feedback with the hotel manager. He would like to offer an apology for the poor service you felt you received from the reception staff, and assures us this will be addressed immediately. There are also plans in the pipeline to replace the soft furnishings in the rooms and public areas. Whilst we realise this does not impact on your holiday, we hope that it goes some way to show we take the feedback we receive seriously.
We would like to thank you for travelling with Headwater this summer and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater customer service team
By Mr Jones on 03/02/2015
Although weather in Portugal is unpredictable in January, it is warmer than UK and has more daylight hours. However the wild atlantic was wonderful to see in strong winds. The trails were wonderfully peaceful, and the coastal scenery stunning, fishermans trail was probably the most spectacular coastal walk we have ever seen. The 6 day walk was very well put together, with a variety of countryside terraines, ridge walks, cliffs and beaches. Pedralva was a fascinating place to stay, and as there were so few people there we were entertained and educated in local cuisine by their very amusing 'French' waiter. As an add on we had a 2/3 day stay in Lisbon, lovely city, and it is a must to sample the patische do nata, available in most cafes.
By Mr Maitland on 07/01/2015
Varied walking, generally on quiet routes. Good views on all the walks. Gavarnie and Lac D'Ourrec were especially good - take the offer of the lift on the Lac D'Ourrec day if you can as it gives you more chance to explore the high meadows etc.
Excellent welcome in each hotel, food generally very tasty, local and varied. Especially enjoyed the local trout at Ramonjuan and everything at Les Pois Sont Rouges in Argeles! Transport options worked well.
For Gavarnie - we managed to get up and back to the waterfall with a very quick detour up to the Cabine des Soldats in a total of 6.5 hours but that was really pushing it (for us). So we managed to use the bus that arrived at 10am (on a Sunday) and left at around 5.30. If you missed out the Cabine (which was ok for views but great for Marmots) then it would have been a comfortable walk. Definitely recommend going there on the best day of weather as it is spectacular!
Thanks Headwater - another great holiday!
By Mr Neininger on 31/12/2014
I can put in one word GO It`s worth it
By Mrs Harman on 08/12/2014
We enjoyed ourselves enormously. Both the hotels were great and staying in a little harbour town during a storm was certainly interesting. The weather was mixed and stopped us doing all the walks but I had bought a walks book for Tenerife and that was really useful as it had alternatives for the days when it was raining and cloudy in the mountains. Someone on your website suggested it and I really recommend anyone to do that. The recommended walks were good but we found them rather harder than expected and Everything took Longer both walks and driving. My partner works overseas a lot and is used to all sorts of driving but the timing was a bit optimistic. Also the instructions are not always very useful, partly because they are somethimes out of date. However, the map you provided was excellent. Overall it was a lovely holiday. We liked the contrast of the two hotels - the country stay at Salamanco with its botanic garden and swimming pool and being right on the square at Garachico. The receptionist at Garachico (Erasma) was most helpful re restaurants and we had some delicious evening meals at a variety of restaurants.
By Mr Dent on 28/11/2014
Excellent hotels with 4 evenings enjoying a la carte Michelin one star dinners. Great food and wine throughout. Map directions adrift on a couple of occasions but overall ok.
By Mr Smith on 28/11/2014
A very good week's walking with opportunities to see the culture and history of Gozo, whilst accommodated in a comfortable hotel of good standard. The local people are most welcoming and helpful. The only dark cloud is the continuance of the Maltese habit of shooting small songbirds, which is no longer necessary 'for the pot'. Any open area is blighted by the presence of pathetic looking men in camouflage clothing, sheltering in stone hides, waiting to shoot small birds trapped on the ground by their wires and nets, using large bore shotguns. The sporting etiquette of only shooting a bird that is flying, and thus requiring some skill, most certainly does not apply! Walkers must be continually aware of wires that stray across footpaths and the potential field of fire from these hides.
Dear Mr Smith,
Thank you for taking the time to write in with your feedback. It was lovely to see that you enjoyed your week in Gozo, taking in the sights and sounds this unique region has to offer .We were also sorry to read of the upset the bird shooting caused you and Mrs Smith. Please be assured that we have passed on your comments to our local agent and have asked them to highlight your feedback to the necessary governing body in Gozo.
By Mrs Campion on 24/11/2014
Slovenia is a lovely country. The walking could be a bit more challenging in the hills rather than predominantly in the valleys, but to an extent that is a result of the risk management around the holiday. The walks were a good length generally and the notes were good enough if you use the map and ask locals where there is any doubt - for example the 'suspension bridge' noted to cross to avoid the landslide between Bovec and Kobarid was actually a concrete road bridge, and in fact we used the 'closed' route from Bovec to Kobarid anyway after talking to some of the local residents. Hotel Mangart and Jezero were great, clean, modern hotels. Hotel Hvala had good food but is in serious need of room updates and would not get more than 2 stars in the UK. All the staff at all the hotels were very good.
We would recommend staying on in Bohinj for a few days at the end and making use of the discount visitor card for the transport systems, and some great high level walking at the top of the Vogel cable car lift
By Mrs Cole on 24/11/2014
I did find the notes back to the airport from the Gredos mountains very difficult, as it said 'reverse your original notes from Madrid Airport'. I thought this very lazy as we were taking many motorways and A roads and they were not clear to start with. There was plenty of space on the page and it felt as though we were being ignored at this stage.
By Mr Brock on 17/11/2014
Great holiday, brilliant walks, great food and superb way to increase your knowledge and taste of italian wines. Unfortunately the journey home (and originally before it was changed the outward journey) was a total pain. This left us both with a bad taste in our mouth and spoiled the overall holiday experience. When we were dragging our suitcases around Milan train station wandering where the airport was we were cursing Headwater. At this stage we had already been on the road for over 4 hours, 2 hours from hotel to Turin and 2 hours by train to Milan. When we eventually came across a coach that was going to Milan Malpaso Airport we had to fork out 20 Euros for another 1 hour 10 minute coach journey to the airport. Coach stops first at the terminal we dont want and everyone gets off. We dont speak Italian and have no idea whats going on, Luckily a helpful stranger told us to stay on coach. The irony of course is Headwater give you all these walking directions/cycling directions but leave you to guess your way home.
By Mrs Maingay on 14/11/2014
Very pleasant. And we enjoyed our visits to Granada and Cordoba,the latter easily done by public transport
By Mr Pomfrett on 14/11/2014
a great variety of interseting walks in fantastic landscapes
By Mr Deacon on 07/11/2014
Overall we enjoyed the holiday, and especially liked the first hotel. But we did not think that Quinta da Bella Vista was five star. Some features are excellent but the room we were shown first was poor: no balcony, faded fittings and an unpleasant musty smell. In the event we had to pay an additional 30 Euros a night to get the sort of room we expected. This was negotiated for us by the MB Travel office, who were very helpful.
Looking on Trip Advisor, the hotel seems to offer two standards depending on the building one is in, one excellent and the other adequate at best.
Dear Mr Deacon, Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire. We were delighted to see that you had an enjoyable holiday overall. Although, were sorry to hear of your disappointment with the Quinta da Bela Vista. Ordinarily, this hotel receives positive feedback from our customers. However, Please be assured that we realise we cannot afford to let our standards of accommodation slip, therefore. With this in mind, we have passed on your feedback to the hotelier and we will closely monitor the new feedback we receive for this hotel over the coming season.
Thank you for your constructive comments; we look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
By Mr Cumming on 04/11/2014
All aspects of booking and organisation went without hitch.
Taxi arrangements and driver were again excellent!
By Mrs Blake on 03/11/2014
Disappointed because Headwater had informed us that an area (the Kantra bay and cafÃ©) would be unavailable because of filming - only to arrive and get message that whole swathes of land were inaccessible and our Day 1 walk wasn't possible. (We were able to walk the start of the route, but then had to turn around.) Film unit security was spread across a wide area from close to the hotel, and we were challenged regularly by security personnel if we got anywhere near to the unit. We hadn't been given to understand that the restrictions would be so all-enveloping. We believe filming will continue until November.
By Mr Mitchell on 29/10/2014
A most enjoyable week, blessed with good weather and walking of a well-chosen standard. Good accommodation.
By Mrs Bowen on 27/10/2014
I have put fair for value this time, our 9th Headwater holiday, as the standard of the notes was poor and this is what we are going on the holiday for. I have written a separate email to explain. Also the Cerca do Sol was situated too far away from the coastal route and the 4km walk back on the 2 days was long and boring. The room was disappointing after the other 2 places as small and no terrace to sit out or put boots etc. Lovely helpful people though and ate there on the second night which was excellent. One other point at the Herdade the first night we were expected to eat octopus for our main course so I declined and was offered a dry and tasteless pasta dish cooked for the children which was inedible so I went hungry. The second night however the meal was delicious and enjoyed by all.
By Mr Pittam on 27/10/2014
Bermuda was an excellent choice for a walking holiday & Coco Reef a great hotel. The food was better than our expectation. Walking was very easy just unfortunate that the storms had blocked the Railway Trail & paths. Just very unfortunate to have 2 storms hit within one week but cannot fault the care , help & advice given to us by Headwater - esp Lisa - & Tim who arranged taxi to airport etc
By Mrs Grant on 27/10/2014
The walking was relatively easy although there was more need to carry your own picnic lunch than on other holidays as there were few opportunities to pass cafes/restaurants. Walking was scheduled for every other day so we needed to arrange things to do on days off. In addition, there was probably less 'sights' to see than on previous holidays unless by independent travel on the non-walking days. However, as usual, the arrangements were superb and everything went smoothly including the lovely warm weather in October.
By Mrs Bishop on 27/10/2014
We were a little concerned as to whether the three train connections we needed to make to get from the airport to the hotel would work but in the event everything dovetailed perfectly. The hotel was well located for access to/from the station and bus stops, and the walking was varied and interesting, making full use of the lift systems, and covering all different sides of the valley. The food in the hotel was good on some evenings but only average on others - the starter on the first night for instance consisted of tiny cubes of cheese and a few salad leaves and the main course looked as if it had been kept warm for a while, rather than being freshly served. Something to be aware of is that during August, when we visited, Davos is a popular destination for Hassidic Jewish families, with many hotels and apartment blocks being completely taken over so if you are expecting a traditional Swiss experience, you may be disappointed. Visitors should also compare Headwater prices (we paid around Â£1500 per person for half board) as against about Â£850pp charged by Inghams for the same week for full board.
By Mrs White on 27/10/2014
This was our first walking holiday since we were teenagers and our first holiday without children. It was an excellent introduction. Good quality accommodation, a beautiful area and well guided walks. Sometimes the notes were a little unclear and we deliberately avoided a couple of walks that other travellers had said were difficult to follow but we only lost our way on one of the walks and think this was because there had been substantial recent tree felling and logging that obliterated the tracks. Our host Theresa was excellent and took her responsibilities very seriously in ensuring we were safe and happy. We also had the pleasure of meeting other headwater guests and spent some meals and walks together which was an added bonus. In summary, a well organised and enjoyable holiday.
By Mr Ruffler on 27/10/2014
I have a friend who is doing this trip next year and I have recommended your company
By Mrs Barker on 24/10/2014
Overall the holiday was as expected, we have been with you before. We do enjoy the holiday. Having said that, the hotel in Assisi was poor, the basement restaurant was soulless. I appreciate that it was probably chosen because it had a swimming pool. We would rather have stayed in a more upmarket hotel in the centre of Assisi rather than the outskirts with the swimming pool, and our 18 year old is in agreement. We could've looked around Assisi in the evening, and the rest day was spent looking around the churches, so not much time to lie by a pool. A more comfortable hotel with nicer food would've been appreciated! A choice would be nice.
The pool at La Tavola was impossible to sit by due to the flies, not sure whether that was due to pigs close by or the earlier summer weather causing an increase in fly population.
By Mr Morrison on 22/10/2014
Challenging walking with a comfortable hotel at the end of the day.
By Mr Hainsworth on 22/10/2014
There were a lot of tourists in the National Park, but the two days walking either side of the park were far less crowded and we met more local people. It was lovely to be able to swim in the sea when you had finished a walk.
By Mr Tucker on 22/10/2014
Good. But the food was uninspired, with too much use of factory-made sauces. The deserts were dull - ice-cream almost every evening. No fruit available at breakfast and the yoghurt was definitely 'off' on one day. Staff nice but their English very limited - it is incorrect to say that the family speak the language.
By Mrs Tindall on 21/10/2014
Aeolian islands and their volcanoes are sensational and therefore we thoroughly enjoyed our holiday. The hotels were fine but did not justify the high price paid for the holiday especially as we were self guided (apart from the Etna trip) and had to pay and make our own arrangements for transport to the islands. The weak link was the Sicilian Agents who never kept in touch especially as we found out that nobody had walked up Stromboli since August and we had to ring for info on this on the morning of our walk! We wasted time here and could have been given alternative suggestions.
We will travel to the islands again but independently, staying on Lipari and travelling between the islands on a daily basis. it definitely would have been cheaper.
By Mrs George on 21/10/2014
The Dolomites are stunning and the walking was varied and challenging. The route notes were excellent and the self guiding was easy. The hotel was exceptional, with delicious food. The village of Dobbiacco was very well placed with good bus connections which made walking in different areas easy and enjoyable.
By Mrs Sodring on 20/10/2014
This holiday involves not only walking but a lot of travelling (not fully described in the brochure) by boat and minibus. The necessary boat journeys require extra cash as fares are not included in the cost of the holiday. Also food, though of high quality, is expensive in Stromboli and Taoramina. Studying books on the history, geology, flora and fauna of eastern Sicily and the Aeolian Isles made this trip particularly interesting.
By Mr Lewis on 20/10/2014
The combination of a fine hotel location, dramatic countryside and superb food made this a unique holiday which brought us new and welcome experiences. We chose walks that ranged from beautiful countryside rambles to testing mountain ascents. In view of the excellent local advice, it is easy to tailor the nature and difficulty of the walks to your own abilities and inclinations. In addition, the gastronomy was first class.
By Mr Curwen on 20/10/2014
The Gredos is a wonderful location for walking holidays and Milano Real provides and excellent base. This holiday offers lots of walking options from dramatic high level mountain views to idyllic river valleys resounding with tinkling cow bells and trickling streams. We had a fascinating day in Salamanca when we fancied a change from walking and the journey through the mountains added to our enjoyment of the day. Last but by no means least, Teresa and Paco were superb hosts and nothing seemed to be too much trouble to make sure we enjoyed our stay. We will definitely be back.
By Mrs Barrett on 17/10/2014
Fantastic coastal walks. Distances are reasonable but remember as it is coastal you drop from cliff tops to sea and back up again. Fantastic beaches, well worth a return visit on the 'day off' from walking.
By Mr Larcombe on 17/10/2014
We really enjoyed the holiday. Katie and Jim were very good representatives. There has been a problem with an outbreak of horse flies and so they went out of their way to suggest an alternative walk that avoided walking through woods. This was really appreciated. My only issue was the last walk between Casolare Le Terre Rosse and Park Hotel Le Fonti. I found this walk to be too long especially as the last couple of miles was up hill. Luckily it was a relatively cool day, if the sun had been out I don't think I would have been able to complete the walk.
By Mr Howell on 17/10/2014
Excellent mix of well chosen walks, in well chosen regions, with well chosen hotels. We know we can trust Headwater.
By Mrs Barnes on 17/10/2014
Walks were fairly strenuous but scenery magnificent - lovely unspoilt village - excellent food.
By Mrs Maddison on 17/10/2014
This must have been one of our most enjoyable holidays. There was never a dull moment. Fascinating region , great walks and great towns and villages to explore
By Mrs Holmes on 16/10/2014
An interestingly varied holiday with wooded hills, inland country and scenic coastal walking, giving a good taste of the area. We particularly enjoyed walking via some of the beautiful mediaeval villages included in the route of the second walk. Also, we really appreciated having route notes for some suggested 'rest-day' walks, especially as this holiday is relatively short. The three hotels were also quite different and all had a charm of their own - we thoroughly enjoyed each one. This holiday would suit those looking for variety and a balance between activity and rest. The walks were well constructed, with some challenging sections, but not too exhausting, so there is a sense of achievement at the end of the day and tired legs are soon revived by a gentle swim and a good dinner! Thank you, Headwater, for a great holiday and we hope to be back for another one.
By Mr Grant on 16/10/2014
We enjoyed the rest days and some parts of the walks were very enjoyable with spectacular landscapes. However, overall we felt that the holiday was not exactly as described. It is called a 'Coastal Walk' but it is, in fact, rather a tough mountain hike as the walks focus inland in dry arid and often rather inhospitable terrain. The holiday description states 'once you begin walking clockwise around the peninsula, the sea is your constant companion'. The sea is not your constant companion, as for the most part, it is far off and out of sight. There are no villages at all (bar one small one just before El Porta de la Salva) on the walks, pretty,'cute as a button' or otherwise. A lot of people would enjoy this but it could be clearer in the holiday description. A lot of the climbs and descents are steep and rocky and in one place you do have to do a small bit of rock climbing. The trails are often on loose rocks and stones and narrow.There is quite a lot of scrabbling required. I think this should have been flagged in the holiday description with better photos. I would have rated the holiday difficulty at least as a '2 boot +.' Cadaques is certainly the highlight but all the hotels were excellent and welcoming. Recommend the restaurant 'Can Rafa' in Cadaques.
By Dr Banyard on 16/10/2014
Everythiing worked just as it should. We were very happy indeed with our holiday. My wife's dietary restrictions were coped with very efficiently and without fuss by the hotel. Thank you very much!
By Mrs O'Carroll on 16/10/2014
I enjoyed looking through the website which was very informative. The whole holiday was very well organised; being met at the airport and being given chilled water bottles when we got in the mini bus was great. Our reps couldn't have been more helpful; they stopped at a shop on the way to our hotel so we could buy food and water for the following day's walking, they offered us equipment and leant us waterproofs. We felt very well looked after and listened too. For us this was the ultimate, stress free holiday! The walks were quite long and it was hot, but the terrain was pretty easy and we never found ourselves struggling - there was always the knowledge that there was a lovely hotel with pool and meal waiting for us at the other end. As a family we are fairly active, but not very fit - my husband plays racquetball once a week and I go for a daily 50 minute dog walk which proved to be enough to allow me to enjoy the walks. Our children all do sport at school and our eleven year old found the walking easy!
By Mrs Gorman on 15/10/2014
Holiday was very enjoyable. Good but not intrusive support from local representatives who gave some very useful hints and were always contactable. Hotels were very excellent with one notable exception.:
- one notable exception - Hotel Terre di Casol, see below for more details,
- the welcoming receptionist at Casolare LeTerre Ros who had no interest in helping us locate our forwarded luggage (which had arrived).
By Mr Dyer on 14/10/2014
We would like to say how fantastic the man was who gave us the mini-moke ride from our hotel back into Portomarin and how hard our hostess (Maria) worked to keep everybody happy in the Casa de los Samoza.
The food in Rectoral de Goian was amazing! For the world's best bread and butter pudding go to O Muino de Pena>
By Mr Sillett on 14/10/2014
Wonderful holiday, with fantastic food and wine and one absolutely amazing hotel (Le Silve). Good two boot walking, especially on the first and last days.
If you like walking in Italy you will love this holiday.
By Mrs Keen on 14/10/2014
The scenery is wonderful and the walking excellent if a little challenging on occasions.
By Pro Beevers on 14/10/2014
Good walking, good accommodation , food and wine. Interesting cities and towns to visit.
By Dr Darke on 14/10/2014
The joy of not using a car for 8 whole days was amazing! The walking was lovely, the grape harvest in full swing, the hotels EXCELLENT with good breakfasts and all arrangements extremely convenient and clear. Flying from Bristol is such fun compared with the toil of Heathrow/ Gatwick. Staying in Paris for the first night makes good sense, and the TGV is superb! There is only one snag...not having a car to bring home all the excellent wines! The Co-op at Turckheim is surely one of the best in France.
By Mrs Higgins on 13/10/2014
Could not fault Headwater for their excellent customer service and organisation. I'm not even going to look at other companies now for any future walking holidays.
By Mr Rogers on 13/10/2014
A really fabulous holiday to a lovely area which we had not previously heard much about. Very enjoyable!
By Mrs Love-fordham on 13/10/2014
This is our fourth Headwater trip. Our favorite trips in order are: 1) Alps 2) Dordogne 3) Amalfi Coast and 4) this one. All of the others have been 5 star plus. I don't even know how to rate this one. There were so many highs and lows that it is hard to average them. The hotels, Le Silve and Le Case, are spectacular and took care of every need. I can't say enough good about them. The food was exceptional in all hotels except the Assisi hotel where you eat in a nondescript big undecorated basement room. The hiking was perfect and challenging, but the trip notes were unenthusiastic and lacked the usual Headwater info bites and optional side trips - so we made our own side trips. The trip notes need some important updates - we did not get lost, but others did multiple times and their confusion was understandable. We had awesome trip mates that we had not met prior to the trip. The highlights of the trip were: 1) Being in Assisi for the Feast of St. Francis and being present for the parade and seeing the Prime Minister of Italy, 2) Vistas from the Rifuggio de Madonna (they rival what we saw in the Alps), 3) Le Silve and Le Case hotels were amazing places of rest and solitude. I think this trip had the potential of being my very favorite, but needs the kind of attention that Headwater is so great at on other vacations.
By Mrs Cattaneo on 13/10/2014
A beautiful place to visit and explore. The accommodation of a very good standard and in lovely locations.
We did find the walks very interesting, challenging at times but about the right length, however we did use an app on a smart phone, which indicated we walked a few K further than the instructions stated. We also felt some of the walks did need to be re-done, especially the walk on day 4 from Diano D'Alba which we found very confusing to get out of and were told by the rep to take a different path at one point, which totally threw us off route, although we did find our way with the help of some locals.Although we understood why there was a walk on Day 7 back to Benevello, it was rather tedious.
Our restaurant selection for the evening meals was on the whole very good, but we did find it difficult to find something we could eat at the Villa D'Amelia, mainly because of our own diet of not eating red meat. The Locanda del Centro in Castiglone Falletto was really not very good.
Overall, a thoroughly enjoyable holiday.
By Ms Tomkins on 13/10/2014
The islands of Sicily walk was a very varied holiday, the highlight being the visits to the volcano at Vulcano, Stromboli and Etna.
By Mrs Thompson on 11/10/2014
We enjoyed this holiday andwere pleased with our choice as we had excellent weather (contrasting with rain every day in the Austrian Lakes last year!) - but we do have a major reservation about the coastal walking (the days 2 & 3 'inland' walks were fine). On day 4, the coastal walk takes you away from the coast over the last section (south of Cavaleiro). This is a wide flat, rather boring gravel/sand track with little of interest - partiularly at this time of year when crops have either been harvested or burned off by th sheat of the sun. You are too far from the cliff top to be able to see the beautiful coast. We were then invited to re-walk this route (with only minor variations and in the opp. direction) on Day 5 as part of the Touril Loop. We thought this was a bit silly and walked up the coast path to the lighthouse, and back the same way. We could of course have stuck to the coastal path on Day 5 and we would suggest you specify this in future, omitting the (unnecessary) 'Touril Loop'. You could then perhaps introduce a further day's walking south of Cerca do Sul or - if that proves impracticable, just make the holiday one day shorter.
We thought that Day 7 contained by far the best of the coastal walks because you were able to see so much more of the beautiful coast from the trail. On days 5 and 6, quite a bit of the walking seemed to be just that little bit away from the cliff top and the path a bit flat and tedious at times. (When you do get the view though it is certainly spectacular!).
The Cercada do Sul is a bit of a dull treck away from the coast path - again on a flat, rather boring path and, again, repeated on Day 7. We accept there's probably not much you can do about this if there's no other suitable accommodation.
And, finally, we would suggest you build meals at the Cercado do Sul into the holiday. There didn't seem to be much to offer in Brejao....and it's a bit of treck down a dull flat paved road to get to the village from the Cercado. (We did have a look but didn't fancy the walk back in the dark so ate both nights at the Cercado).
Wouldn't want you to think we didn't enjoy our hol. It was fine and the orgabisation / admin was faultless as ever. No problems at all with travel arrangements.
Just a bit disappointed with some of the walking (lots of it was good!).
By Mrs Potts on 10/10/2014
Varied walking, great countryside and wonderful, welcoming accommodation with excellent food. An ideal holiday with real feel good factor
By Dr Haberman on 09/10/2014
We enjoyed the walks but felt let down by the quality of accommodation and food.
By Mis Saunders on 09/10/2014
We have been on many Headwater walking holidays - both guided and independent walking, but felt Islands of Sicily (nicknamed by us ' Volcanoes of Sicily') was a different experience, and by and large a good one. Hotels are all of a good standard and are in good locations. Breakfasts are fine - not exceptional, but fine. Dinners in the hotel in Lipari are good and there are lots of restaurants for when you dine out. The walks are interesting, the views great and the volcano walking a real experience. Be warned though the trips to see Stromboli and Etna are weather/ volcanic activity dependant. We were not able to do to the night walk on Stromboli. However you can do the day walk independently in the late afternoon and get to see the lava flow (from a safe distance of course) at night. The path down is easy - but don't forget your head torch! We did do Etna, which was a real experience. The slightly frustrating element of the holiday is the amount of time and effort we spent on getting the Hydrofoil tickets and checking timetables - the times in the notes and the advertised time at the ticket office are not always the time the boat with actually leave and it wasn't always clear when the ticket office would be open to check/ buy tickets. Having said that, if you are OK will that little bit of uncertainty/ adventure you'll have a great time!
By Dr Garwood on 08/10/2014
We've been on quite a few Headwater holidays & we've never been disappointed
By Mr Whitehurst on 08/10/2014
Very good walking holiday with excellent accomodation. Croatia is a lovely country to visit, the people are friendly, there is plenty to see and the prices are reasonable.
By Ms Morgan on 08/10/2014
We had a wonderful holiday. The walking was a dream and took us to so many beautiful places we had never heard of. Two of the hotels were a bit basic for accommodation and we would have liked to have the option at Hotel Rosa to upgrade to a suite if we had known. Garbi first day the room was basic but on the last night we had a great room, much larger and with a view. Will be back....
By Mr Petch on 08/10/2014
Couldn't fault it. Even the weather was excellent. Looking forward to next year's brochure.
By Mis Rodgers on 08/10/2014
Enjoyed the whole holiday. Walking and hotels were great and the scenery was fantastic. Enjoyed barcelona and the trip to the Dali House. Overall a good variety of experiences in the time.
By Mrs Hughes on 08/10/2014
Overall it was a great holiday. We throughly enjoyed ourselves.
By Mrs Davies on 08/10/2014
This Headwater holiday is definitely a cut above other European holidays that we have enjoyed with you. Villa d'Amelia and Villa Beccaris were exceptional in every way, and throughout we enjoyed excellent local cuisine and wines. We would happily do it all over again!
By Dr Mason on 08/10/2014
The holiday was very enjoyable, the location was great, but the walks were challenging in the heat, even in September. The local food was delicious.
By Mrs Wakefield on 08/10/2014
A superb holiday. The scenery was spectacular and moving from hotel to hotel makes the holiday interesting and varied.
By Mr Griffiths on 08/10/2014
The holiday was what we had hoped it would be.
The wonderful weather made the walking and views the best they could possibly have been (apart from one afternoon of rain).
The hotel was comfortable and the staff were friendly, kind and helpful,
The wine in the hotel was extremely expensive - when we requested house wine we were told that a delivery was expected and that there was none........ So we didn't have wine with our dinner. We are not big drinkers but would have enjoyed a glass of wine with our evening meal.
By Mrs Deane on 08/10/2014
Excellent location for seeing the Dolomites.
Friendly, family run hotel.
Instructions for the walking routs and the use of bus/train were very good
By Mrs Ames on 07/10/2014
The hotel was excellent - food wonderful, service could not have been better and a great location. The walks were interesting and varied with the advantage of being able to do longer or shorter versions. This is our third holiday with Headwater and we can highly recommend the company. If there is a choice we would suggest flying to Rome rather than Pisa as we found it a long drive (3 hours) after already travelling to gatwick and flight to Pisa.
By Mr Smith on 07/10/2014
We have used several walking holiday companies and you are thus being compared with your peers. The booking process was poor, uncertain and had to be regularly prompted by me. It took ages to get any proper confirmation. You continually tried to send out documents by email and not by post - good for you, rotten for me - I am not going to print them - you should do so. Your walking notes were a disappointment. We often felt that they had been written by someone whose first language was not English. They were lacking in detail, imprecise and sometimes confusing and wrong.They are flabby in size with small print. On walk number 5, where we had been deceived and delayed by your directions, this section had to be repeated the following day. Fellow walkers at the hotel had given us their notes for the same section from Inntravel, so on that second day we had both sets of notes with us. We would never have made the mistakes that occurred if we had been using the detailed, better formatted and more user-friendly notes of Inntravel. The last point that I want to make concerns your suggestion in the main brochure that after the walk on Day 5 we should 'have a paddle at Praia do Tonel.' The 'beach' there is about 75 feet vertically below you at the foot of steep cliffs. The only access is by a narrow, loosely surfaced and almost vertical gulley created by rain erosion. Ropes have been fitted at a couple of points meaning that one would have to abseil down and haul oneself up again. It would be dangerous on a mountaineering holiday but simply lethal for many people. I am an experienced walker but would only attempt this if suicidally inclined. There is a notice there warning to stay clear because of possible rockfall. There is only one explanation: the person who wrote the notes has never seen the beach!
By Mrs Makin on 06/10/2014
Travel arrangements were good, hotels were easy to find and all but one was well maintained. Walks were very well described, distances were not accurate and the number of steps was a joke but the walks were clearly described an the views were wonderful. We saw many rural areas of the Amalfi Peninsular that most people will never see, they don't know what they are missing! are missing
The rest days are a very good idea and gave us chance to do several things we wanted to do, ie go to Pompeii and Capri, without the break I think that the last few days would have felt like hard work.
By Mr Lipscombe on 01/10/2014
The hotels were stayed in were all quite different and we enjoyed the variety of style and locations. The walking, particularly along the coastal sections, was excellent.
By Mrs Clark on 01/10/2014
Headwater holidays are ones where you can count on the arrangements made and simply enjoy the holiday you have chosen to take.
By Mr MacKenzie on 01/10/2014
Well organised, lovely hotel and location. Good well described walks. Very good holiday. Thoroughly recommended.
By Mr Marroney on 01/10/2014
Walking in Gozo is almost too good to share. By turns breathtaking (cliffs) and relaxing. Returning to Ta Cenc every day was bliss.
By Ms Stewart on 01/10/2014
Wonderful hotel in a beautiful, tranquil setting, with friendly, helpful staff. Close to some of the best beaches on the island.
By Mrs Sharp on 29/09/2014
Well put together holiday ensuring something of interest every day. The half board element can be a bit restrictive although most places were ok with making changes for a supplement. The only place we had a problem with this was Hostellerie de Clos where we were basically told what we were to eat with no choice given at all. As it happens we were ok but foie fras to start and pigeon to follow might not be to everyone's choice. The hotels were quite varied but generally good or better. Our least favourite was Hotel de la Poste in Vezelay. It's pretty tired and we had a poor room (102) which was at the front of the hotel and directly over the Bistro. You might think Vezelay would be quiet but the lorries are relentless from about 4.30am.
Our rep Ross could not be bettered. He put his heart and soul into making sure we had a good holiday and was endlessly patient - as well as very good company.
By Mr Caffyn on 29/09/2014
Efficient but lacks character..
By Mrs Smith on 29/09/2014
Overall very good
By Mr Abrahams on 26/09/2014
Well thought through and excellent administration meant we could concentrate on our walking
By Mr Lewis on 26/09/2014
For us aged 79 and 74 the walks were challenging but we very much enjoyed our holiday in a beautiful area of Spain.
By Mrs Salisbury on 26/09/2014
Wonderful walks, great advice from Peter at hotel. We walked every day, and enjoyed exploring the area. Food and the friendly staff at the hotel made this one of our best holidays.
By Mr Kitchen on 26/09/2014
Thoroughly enjoyable - just as we expected - save only for the above average temperatures (35C +). I'm sure it would be a lot more comfortable in the Spring!
By Pro Winlow on 26/09/2014
Bavaria is very nice and very green because it rains a lot! Apart from that we had a good time, but Oberammergau is a bit isolated and it's best to take your car if you can, although local transport is very good.
By Mrs Newsome on 26/09/2014
Perfect walking area, perfect location of very good hotel - excellent local transport and very varied mix and combination of sightseeing and walking possible. Even had perfect weather - brilliant!
By Mr Baxter on 26/09/2014
Holiday met expectations. The stay was perfectly enjoyable - getting around on buses and trains was very easy and straightforward and all the hotel staff were very helpful. Walkinng notes were helpful and accurate. Travelling from Zurich Airport via rail was a pleasurable experience apart from getting our luggage on and off the trains!!
By Mr Kell on 25/09/2014
Well organised and supported walking holiday assisted by friendly and knowledgeable staff. Fine food and accommodation.
By Mr Stanley on 25/09/2014
good varied hotels, good walks with interesting details on the way. Excellent service when booking the holiday, yes we would certainly go with Headwater again.
By Mrs Reeves on 25/09/2014
Fantastic hotel with amazing food in great location. Very friendly staff who were always smiling!
By Mrs Boorman on 25/09/2014
Read the brochure carefully and check the photos of the holiday are not misleading
However the first 2 hotels were great
By Mrs Roderick on 25/09/2014
This was our second visit to Zuheros. The Hotel Zuhayra is the perfect base for a walking holiday. All the staff are friendly and helpful and the evening meals provide a wide range of well-cooked local food. The walks are challenging enough to feel that something has been achieved at the end of the day.
By Mr McMillan on 25/09/2014
The walking was excellent, all in all a great holiday
By Mr Upton on 24/09/2014
Oberammergau is an excellent place to visit for walking and historical sites, the whole area is beautiful (think the sound of music) we really enjoyed the whole time we were there.
By Mr Heald on 24/09/2014
It was an excellent holiday and very well planned so that we had a good morning sightseeing in Leon*, walked the best stretches of the Camino and had an attractive balance of accommodation.
* We were a bit concerned about starting the 1st days walk so late in such heat (30c+), but we managed it!
By Mr Tabrett on 22/09/2014
This was a superb holiday made especially enjoyable by the exceptional help and untiring humour of your rep, Steve Barrington, who went way beyond the call of duty to look after everyone.
By Mr Boyd on 22/09/2014
Although not far from the bustling city of Padova, the Euganean hills seem to be an undiscovered gem and we saw far more butterflies than walkers! We enjoyed all of the walks and there were plenty easily accessible attractive places to visit on our rest days. Our holiday was enhanced by a night in Venice at the start and at the finish.
By Mrs Potthurst on 22/09/2014
The welcome & help we encountered from local people was phenomenal.
By Mr Banham on 19/09/2014
Interesting and varied walking through delightful countryside with visits to and refreshment stops in beautifully preserved historic villages. Each day culminated in a stay in excellent accommodation, the highlight of which was the 3 nights we spent at Castell d`Emporda.
By Mrs Pogson on 19/09/2014
This was a fantastic holiday - all the walks are interesting & varied with spectacular views. We were very lucky to have good weather everyday. The accommodation was excellent throughout - can't fault a thing.
By Mr Propert on 19/09/2014
The 'superior' accommodation really was very good indeed. The local tax a bit of a surprise at the end of the week - if it is mentioned, then you should emphasise it more. The walks and interest are excellent, and the notes worked well, because the paths, signposts and surfaces are so good. We have usually gone to Italy or France with you - and German food is a bit of a shock, in its solidity and calorie count.
By Ms Nicolson on 19/09/2014
I was really taken with Switzerland, finding the people so friendly and helpful. Scenery and transport were fantastic and I will definitely consider a trip to Switzerland again
By Mr Wood on 19/09/2014
Lovely location, great hotel, wonderful support from hotel staff in our 'hour-of-need, varied walks and opportunity to visit an historical Spanish city.
By Mrs Davies on 17/09/2014
Excellent area for a holiday
By Mrs Buckham on 17/09/2014
Beautiful area of Sicily, which took us by surprise. It is very hot though as there's little shade on the walks so a slightly later departure in the year may have been better for us. A good variety of walks available though so when it was at its hottest we just did slightly less strenuous ones.. Also the walking ability of our group of 6 was mixed so we could split up at times but all enjoy a walk then meet for dinner together which worked well.. The sightseeing trips were well chosen and really interesting.
By Mr Jones on 17/09/2014
This is an excellent place for a single centre holiday, offering many good trails with stunning views if you have good weather, but bear in mind that the conditions in high mountain areas such as this can be unpredictable, even in summer.
By Mr Bingham on 17/09/2014
First rate. Hotel, hotel staff, the range of walks, and headwater staff were excellent
By Mr Shaw on 16/09/2014
Magnificent walking in the Dolomites, with very good local transport links. Tuscan walking an enjoyable contrast, gentler and relaxing.
By Mr Buckenham on 15/09/2014
The Austrian lake district is beautiful when the sun shines, unfortunately we only had two days when we saw the sun ; a lot of heavy rain and drizzle made us reluctant to consider another holiday in Austria.
By Ms Foulds on 15/09/2014
Kandersteg is a good base for the series of walks suggested by HW but also for constructing your own routes if you are a confident walker. The hotel is comfortable and friendly and the food was mostly excellent. A small buffet was provided every day from which to make sandwiches for a picnic lunch, although more choice of fruit would have been welcome. Kandersteg village is very quiet (at least in summer) and we were a little disappointed at the lack of anywhere to go in the evening apart from having a drink in another hotel. Prices for cable cars, soft drinks, coffees and cakes were higher than envisaged but quality was very good. The scenery in the valley is stunning but the typical mountain weather meant that the peaks were not always visible. On cloudy days, it was good to have the choice of taking a quick train ride into the Rhone Valley area where the weather was usually better. Several of the walks in the HW itinerary can be shortened or lengthened to suit individual abilities and taken as a whole they give a very good overview of the area.
By Mr Stewart on 12/09/2014
A good short break in spectacular surroundings, with enough guidance to enable us to enjoy the area to the best as and when we wished without forcing us into any particular programme.
By Mrs Wall on 11/09/2014
This was an absolutely stunning holiday in every way. The hotels were all of a high standard and each was lovely in its own individual way. The restaurants were a nice treat after the day's walking and working up an appetite! There was stiff competition for our favourite restaurant and Il Castello and Villa D'Amelia had to share the prize for sheer wow factor! That said La Locanda del Centro was our favourite 'non-Michelin' restaurant. The waiter couldn't do enough to make us feel welcome, it had a lovely relaxed atmosphere and the food was really tasty.
The route notes for each of the walks was spot on and went wrong once (our fault, not Headwater's!). We'd recommend the circular walk to La Morra. It's a pretty strenuous walk through the vineyards but the sense of achievement and the stunning views are definitely worth any aching calf muscles!
Lastly, Marsha and Esme (the Headwater Reps) made our holiday what it was. They were always cheerful and full of tips for the places we were due to walk to. They were also on the end of a phone with any queries we had.
Thanks for a brilliant holiday, Sarah & Mark Wall
By Mr Gallagher on 11/09/2014
Katie and Jim put every possible effort into making our stay problem free. On the first afternoon they sat with us for an hour giving us very helpful information about the route and terrain that we would be walking, places en-route where we could get food and drink, landscape features and sights to look out for. Although we no cause to call upon their assistance during our holiday it was clear that nothing would have been too much trouble for them.
With regards to the holiday itself, the route had been carefully planned and all the hotels were in wonderful locations (Medieval Tuscan hilltop towns).
We would recommend the region and this holiday to anyone.
By Mrs Robinson on 08/09/2014
Ask more questions regarding the walks prior to booking.e.g places to take refreshment.
Ensure that you understand the walking levels, as although we were able to complete the walks fairly easily we noticed a number of people having to be transported due to the physical demands.
Be prepared for isolation at two of the hotels as they were in remote situations.
If you like walking in forests and almost total solitude this is the holiday for you. We hardly met anyone on all walks.
By Dr Worthy on 03/09/2014
El Milano Real walking holiday was the perfect combination of fantastic walks, outstandingly delicious food and a warm welcome.
The service and level of advice was great.
A beautiful place with some stunning walking in the mountains.
By Mrs Henry on 02/09/2014
This holiday was one of the best holidays I have ever had, the scenery was absolutely wonderful once you were up the top of the mountains, and so peaceful, you need to be very fit to do this holiday, but the views and tranquillity was worth all the hard work.
By Ms Hall on 28/08/2014
We had a marvellous holiday and really enjoyed the variety of walks and hotels, and the suggestions for days off. The area was so beautiful and arriving on foot in each town was magical.
Minor gripes were: not hearing from the rep (we phoned her on day 2). She told us of a landslide and said she would send us an alternative route, but this didn't happen. We found the alternative route without difficulty. The maps for the Amalfi coast were not helpful (and one was missing). The route notes were sometimes difficult to follow (we had to learn to concentrate!). We became proud of our navigation skills.
Thank you! Where next?
By Mrs Elliott on 28/08/2014
The Istrian peninsula felt like an undiscovered jewel for visitors. Beautiful countryside, great local food and wine and you can walk all day without seeing anyone else! As always with Headwater a lot of thought had been put into the arrangements for the hotel and the walks and the local guide Romina was brilliant.
By Mr Gower on 28/08/2014
Great walks. Plenty to see and do. Vegetarians beware.
Dear Mr Gower, Thank you for completing your post-holiday questionnaire and for the feedback you have provided, we have discussed your comment regarding vegetarian meals with the hoteliers. As a result of this they have advised us they will ensure a better variety of vegetarian meals are available for future customers. We are sorry for any disappointment this may have caused you during your holiday and were pleased to see that despite this you had an enjoyable holiday.
Headwater Customer Service team.
By Mr Alderman on 28/08/2014
Overall very good holiday but off to a bad start waiting for hire car. 2 hours was an unacceptable time to have to wait without any pre warning that this could be a problem.
Dear Mr Alderman,
Thank you for your feedback; it was a pleasure to read you had an enjoyable holiday. I am sure you have brought back some great memories to treasure.
We were sorry to read of your longer than expected wait to collect your hire car. We have passed on your feedback to Europcar.
We will also add a note to our know before you go booklet, to advise of the longer than average waits which may apply during the busy summer periods, thank you for bringing this to our attention.
Headwater Customer Service
By Ms Summers on 28/08/2014
Everything extremely well-organized - comfortable and interesting accommodation. Would thoroughly recommend Headwater.
By Mr Royce on 28/08/2014
Our pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela was a magical experience, and spiritually uplifting. We encountered so many memorable characters and different nationalities along the way, all with different stories and experiences, which will endure as we reflect on our journey in the years to come.
By Mr Duesund on 28/08/2014
Have told rep about weather and path conditions on Day 3. He was right about poor waymarking. The hotell had few good options and the vegetarian member of our group had problems at the last hotel AS they didn't follow up. When meals are included Headwater should have a higher level than a 20â‚¬ meal. Best place was Argeles Gazost. But not so exciting food offered at alternative restaurant 14th July. In general a OK holiday but a bit too many Wales in the Woody on poor paths. Definitely best Wales on first day with extension. Hopeless quality with dinner at the Ramonjuan. Where did they manage to Get such comments? Make sure Headwater clients get the upstairs bedrooms as there are two rooms without windows on the first floor. Try to Get more Walks like the first Day and the Gavarnie.
By Mr Davis on 28/08/2014
The itinerary is excellent and the islands are beautiful and well worth visitng. The highlight for us was the night-time climb up the Stromboli volcano. Howver the walking notes were scanty, and in some cases positvely misleading. In particular there needs to be more accurate and detailed information about the Mount Etna day, with a clear warning that it may not be possible to do the walk and information about what customers are supposed to do if this is the case. It would also be more useful if the driver dropping you off at least knew some very basic information about the itinerary eg that he needed to drop you off by the Guides' hut, not the cable car station. Some of the walks are very demanding, with long steep climbs, and in our view the walk sould be graded 2+ boots. There should also be clearer warnings in the holiday description that the number of extras which custormers have to pay for (bus fares, ferry fares, most dinners) is much higher than is the norm for Headwater holidays (this is the eighth that we have been on). All in all, we felt that the customer care element of this holiday (which, for us, has always been one of Headwater's strengths) was of a much lower standard than we have experienced before - enough to make us think twice before booking another holiday with you, which is a shame.
By Mr Haworth-booth on 28/08/2014
Great area for walking but choose different hotel in a better location. Vienna is a wonderful city with lots to see. Hotel Austria recommended for comfortable rooms, excellent location and friendly staff.
By Mrs Frechette on 27/08/2014
We had a great time despite the weather!!
Please note the food at Alte Post restaurant was dreadful and needs addressing
Dear Mrs Frechette, Thank you for your feedback, we are pleased to see that you had a great holiday in the Bernese Oberland region of Switzerland. Although, it was disappointing to read of your dissatisfaction with the food at the Alte post. Whilst the previous feedback we have received for this holiday has scored good to excellent we realise that we cannot afford to let our standards slip and will continue to monitor the feedback over the course of the season. Yours sincerely, Headwater Customer Service team
By Mrs Todd on 27/08/2014
Sarah is an excellent asset to Headwater, knowledgeable and friendly.She was thorough in going through the briefing notes and was on hand if we needed. The walking notes were accurate, at times it felt like a higher grade walk than billed, but that just added to the achievement after each one. Views spectacular, hotels and food excellent. Rest day in Padua to see Giotto Frescoes and then the Anatomy Theatre at the University was fantastic. Sarah gave us opening times and suggestions, so that was really time saving and useful. This was our first HW holiday, and we are already looking where our next one could be.
Dear Mrs Todd, Thank you for your lovely comments regarding our rep Sarah, we have passed your feedback on to her and she was delighted. We were also pleased to see that you had an enjoyable 1st holiday with Headwater it sounds like you took in all of the sights and sounds that this region has to offer. We look forward to welcoming you on your next holiday with us in the future.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mr Duggleby on 26/08/2014
This was the first time we had used Headwater so we had no way of knowing how good they were. In summary - they were excellent. Their advice on what to book, the hotel, the walking summaries and the overall approach were simply the best.
By Mrs Barker on 19/08/2014
We really enjoyed our hioliday. The rep gave us everything we needed, but compared to our other 2 headwater holidays, he perhaps wasn't quite as attentive. Three of the hotels were great, but the Constantine was not anywhere near the same quality and disappointing. We recommend Hotel Schwendi in Kintzheim, a 20 minute walk from Kaysersberg.
We look forward to our next Headwater holiday.
By Dr Gompertz on 15/08/2014
We had a great time in spite on some bad weather. We have sent you a detailed report by post.
By Mr Broughall on 15/08/2014
Excellent accomodation, food, walks and scenery.
By Mrs Wylde on 14/08/2014
Please see above comments - it was a wonderful experience walking the Camino but I was disappointed with the seesaw quality of the places we stayed - a couple lovely, several really miserable. Food poisoning episode only helped by the fact that there was a doctor on the trip who helped me. The venue seeemed unconcerned. Really spoiled the last few days of the holiday.
Dear Mrs Wylde,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire following your holiday this summer to Spain. Firstly, we were sorry to see you felt this holiday did not live up to your expectations with regards to the standard of some of the accommodations and the walk ratings. Please be assured that we have discussed your feedback in detail with our local agents, he will in turn discuss with our local suppliers and measures will be put into place to improve where necessary. We were also sorry to see that you were unwell at the end of your holiday; our agent was also disappointed to hear this and advised us that had you mentioned this to him he would have most certainly arranged onward transportation for you. We have not received any further complaints regarding sickness over this period or throughout the rest of the season. Our agent has advised us that food poisoning is a very rare occurrence in this region as the suppliers are used to dealing with high volumes of pilgrims and all of the food is prepared fresh daily. However, we will continue to monitor the feedback we receive, and will ensure it is cascaded back to the suppliers should another incidence be reported. We were also sorry to see that you felt the accommodations were poor in places. Due to the amount of walking done on this holiday, we try to use accommodations which are on or close to the Camino and because of this the accommodation standards can vary, as reflected in our brochure and web page ratings, however, please be assured that we do realise how important it is to maintain our high standards of accommodation and service, and we do appreciate we cannot afford to let our standards slip. With this in mind, our agent continually monitors any feedback received and provides feedback to both Headwater and the specific suppliers as appropriate. He also advised us that there are newer Albergues being built, however, these do not comply with our standards as most of them offer shared facilities and are mostly dorm type rooms with bunk beds and this is not the type of accommodation we feel is suitable for our customers. In closing we would like to thank you for your constructive feedback.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mrs Walker on 13/08/2014
Headwater thinks of everything - right down to offering us a lovely cold bottle of water when we emerged from a long, hot journey to our pick up point. You select fabulous hotels in brilliant locations, which takes all the hard work out of planning a holiday. Taxis turn up when they're supposed to, hotels and restaurants are expecting us. You are wonderfully efficient. This was our sixth booking with you and we'll be back for more next year. Bravo, Headwater.
By Mrs Lanczak on 12/08/2014
A really lovely holiday, despite some wet weather at times the walks were great. Some were challenging in wet weather, it's a good idea to take a pole if you don't normally, we found them useful. There are some climbs on the walk and downward paths can be slippery, making it 'moderate' at times(hence the boot +). Truly beautiful area that is well worth seeing, there was always a new and spectacular view just around the corner. The hotels were well placed and of excellent quality; we had some great food presented to us. Our rep was very helpful and the notes were thorough and accurate. Two flights was interesting - don't panic about the short transfer time the airline has it sorted - all very well organised. Thoroughly enjoyable holiday.
By Mr Eagles on 11/08/2014
The Villa Aquavivia was a beautifully designed and comfortable hotel; our room was furnished with Tuscan furniture with a view of Montemerano; it was spotlessly clean and the air conditioning was quiet and efficient. The garden is gorgeous and melts naturally into the surrounding vineyards and olive groves. The restaurant is in a converted barn next to the pool; it has panoramic views of the country side, is air conditioned and midge free (and child free!); the menu had both Tuscan and Maremma dishes â€“ we had difficulty choosing!
Our hire car, a Fiat Panda, had the centre of gravity of an Argentinian footballer and the gripping power of a Gecko, so spinning around the quite roads visiting the local hill top towns was easy.
The â€˜Connoisseurs Tuscanyâ€™ Booklet was informative, and the walking notes contained lots of interesting historical cultural information. We enjoyed the local walks and had a day out to Orvieto and its stunning cathedral. If you want to go to Mass in Montemerano, follow Fabrizioâ€™s Way walking notes to Chiesa di San Giorgio (by the northern archway): Saturday at 18.30 or Sunday 11.45.
If you like domestic and ecclesiastical architecture, really good food and wine, and just enjoy being in Tuscany, you will enjoy this holiday.
By Mis Ausden on 11/08/2014
A great way to see Slovenia which is very beautiful, unspoilt and has a fascinating history, with many influences from its neighbours, Italy, Hungary, Austria and Croatia. The rivers are an indescribable blue, the mountains sweep up dramatically from basins of flat land. stunning. The food was lovely and cooked from scratch. how refreshing to be come somewhere where processed food is virtually forgotten and the land is bursting with need allotments growing fresh fruit and veg. beautifully kept towns and villages. they do love their trailing geraniums!
By Mrs Buckle on 08/08/2014
Thank you for a wonderful holiday! We enjoyed the walking, the days off by the pool, the scenery, the swimming pools, the food and the wine immensely. All five of us, including the kids, had a fantastic time.
By Mr Page on 07/08/2014
An excellent walking trip with the added extra of a few days in the superb city of Venice. Excellent support from headwater Rep and good to be 'off the beaten track' in a lesser known and unspoilt area of Italy.
By Mr Fowler on 06/08/2014
An excellently organised walking holiday
By Ms Morrison on 06/08/2014
This was our first holiday with Headwater as we normally organise our holidays ourselves. We will definitely consider another Headwater holiday in the future, as the local knowledge was invaluable, the walks just great (and appropriate for our level), and the hotel was excellent (the request for vegetarian food didn't seem to have reached the hotel but it wasn't a problem, and the chef made up delicious veggie dishes specially each day). We found that the premium that Headwater provides over self-organised holidays is well worth the extra cost: it saved us substantial planning time and made logistics easy, so that we could focus on the more important business of enjoying a great walking holiday. Thank you!
By Mrs Osborne on 04/08/2014
The holiday was very enjoyable, very well organised, and the reps went out of their way to be helpful.
As Headwater guests, we felt that we were being given particularly good treatment at each hotel.
By Mrs Simpson on 04/08/2014
It was hard work covering the average 12 miles/day. We enjoyed the 8 mile day with some 'free time' in the afternoon and felt very at home at Casa de la Somoza that afternoon. Enjoyed the company of the other 4 Headwater walkers we ate and walked with. Exciting to arrive at such an interesting and varied accomodation with such a variety of ambience and fare.
We were told on the 'phone when booking that we needed to get the 6.30 flight from Stanstead in order to have time to catch the train from Madrid to Leon. In fact it only took a short time by taxi to the station where we waited 4 hrs for the train. 2 hrs extra in bed and 8.30 flight would have got us off to a better start!
Thank you arranging all the accomodation and transfer of luggage which worked so well. Loved Leon and found it such a generous place - we kept being given little extras, whether from market traders or patisserie.
Route instructions generally good, but not clear that we needed to walk almost to the railway station to find the Hotel Roma at Sarria. That was a long last k.
Also the last k to Pazo Santa Maria directions could have been clearer with more detail.
By Mr Smith on 04/08/2014
Should have been advised that the hotel is located next to the railway station and level crossing with trains passing through from from 5.30 am. Our upgraded room overlooked the railway station and crossing. No air conditioning in rooms meant we had to leave open the windows during the night and heard announcements, warning bells and the trains themselves every half hour.
By Mr Billing on 31/07/2014
This was a wonderful holiday, full of small surprises and little luxuries. Each hotel was charmingly different. The food was spectacular, the people lovely, and the scenery green, beautiful and quiet. Thank you very much
By Mr Hinson on 31/07/2014
An enjoyable walk through some dramatic and truly beautiful scenery. Great hotels and extremely helpful M Tours staff.
By Mr Mason on 30/07/2014
Stunning scenery and brilliant walks.
By Mr Humphreys on 30/07/2014
We topped and tailed the walking with two nights in Verona and two nights in Venice which gave a nice contrast. The walking was enjoyable with a variety of terrain and the route descriptors good. We were lucky with the weather but it can be unpredictable so you need waterproofs and/or a brolly just in case. Good insect repellent is worth the investment. The area is unspoilt and there seem to be very few tourists. Accommodation was good though air-con is either poor or doesn't exist so it is hot at night. On our rest days were able to visit Montagnana and Padua which were both very enjoyable. However, if you can try to organise the holiday so that you are walking on a Sunday you will avoid being marooned on a rest day - no buses run on Sundays! We found the locals to be friendly though most had as much English as we had Italian - very little! The rep - Sarah - was charming and very helpful! Italian beer is good but expensive - local wine is good and good value! Overall a great experience. We enjoyed the holiday and would recommend it.
By Mrs Weyman on 29/07/2014
Davos was an excellent base for quick access via the various cable cars and funiculars to many stunning high level walks in the beautiful alpine scenery. The Hotel Meierhof suited us perfectly - it is ideally located for transport links between Davos dorf and Davos platz. The close proximity of Davos lake and its many and varied activities was a hit with us - we had an afternoon of windsurfing with an instructor who spoke perfect English. Next time we must have a go at the paragliding which we watched taking place from our spot above Klosters! We visited the Hallenbad and its wellness centre in Davos on two occasions - another bonus after a hard day's walking. We were very fortunate with the weather which made our holiday all the more enjoyable.
By Mrs Grosschmidt on 29/07/2014
Not to be missed well done Headwater
By Mrs Price on 29/07/2014
Dobbiaco is an excellent centre for a walking holiday with superb scenery and good choice of walks. Transfers were efficient, hotel very good and we enjoyed our first experience of a Headwater holiday very much.
By Ms Bowie on 23/07/2014
The walks were really beautiful (although involved a lot of up and down!) and being able to swim on most days in the hot weather made it really special. A really wonderful way to see some of Italy.
By Mr Graham on 23/07/2014
Sensible daily itineraries; good, comfortable hotels; efficient transfers, accurate guide notes; good value for money.
By Mr Moss on 23/07/2014
Really excellent. Do think that the first walk was more than two boots. The narratives seemed to have been written by different people sometimes. One would give specific distances whilst another would tell you you'd 'soon' come across the next landmark.
By Mrs Jones on 23/07/2014
Excellent holiday. Covered everything, good walking at your own level and pace, good food in the area, and a good few places of interest on your doorstep to mix with your walking or do on their own.
Easy to use local transport, train, bus and ski lift - even if your German is very limited.
By Mr Bird on 22/07/2014
See comments on rail travel, and specifically Headwater's absence of advice. Naturally people from the UK expect a similar experience to using the rail at home, and while this assumption would be valid for rail travel in France, Germany, NL etc, Spain was very different.
Dear Mr Bird,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire. We were pleased to see that you scored your holiday overall as good to excellent. However, it was disappointing to see that you encountered issues navigating the Spanish rail system. We would like to apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.
In order to improve the experience for future customers, we have been working closely with our local agents. With this in mind, we are pleased to advise you that for the 2015 season we will be pre purchasing all Spanish rail tickets. This should alleviate the time spent queuing and ensure a smoother trip through the Spanish region. Whilst we realise this does not help you personally. We do hope that it goes some way to show we take your feedback seriously.
Headwater Customer Service Team
By Mr Drinkwater on 21/07/2014
Weather in region is variable so waterproofs are necessary. Ascents and descents are steep but then it is a 2+boot holiday. Some nice little towns for shopping along the way. Good fish on most menus.
By Mrs Gerald on 21/07/2014
We did some wonderful walking through stunning scenery, along turquoise rivers and though fantastic meadows full of flowers and butterflies. We met very few other walkers and on some days none at all. Everywhere was friendly and welcoming and the organisation of transport etc. was excellent. We had a little more rain than we would have liked and it is good advice to start walking early in the morning as the thunder storms did tend to come in the afternoon. Not so impressed by the hotel Mangart, which lacked character. Even in July we were not able to walk over the pass as it was too icy. That was a disappointment as we looked forward to a tougher high walk. We went almost up to it on the last day from the other side.
By Mrs Spalding on 21/07/2014
Well organised walk through beautiful countryside. Perfect opportunity to see the rural Tuscany and taste local food. Wonderful mix of walking sightseeing and relaxing.
By Dr Paterson on 15/07/2014
The Alfa Soleil is a wonderful hotel with a really excellent restaurant.
We're vegetarians and the chef provided an amazing series of creations over the week for us.
The hotel proprietor is a lovely host who really takes care of all his guests and the hotel team are superb.
The walks are amazing and very varied with plenty of other options - one day we took a day trip to Bern which is a fascinating city, and also spent a day on the lake taking a steamer from Spiez.
We travelled by Eurostar and TGV - dinner in Paris on the way out and lunch in Basel on the way back - really comfortable - do book ahead and get cheap first class tickets for the TGV though.
By Mrs Kearney on 14/07/2014
Fantastic holiday, very comfortable hotels, food always delicious. Loved the freedom that walking from hotel to hotel gave us with the option to do as we liked on alternate days.
By Mrs Price on 14/07/2014
Hotel de la Muse du Tarn is not only our 'best' Headwater hotel but probably one of the best hotels we have stayed in worldwide.
We had one very wet day and the hotel was a comfortable and pleasant place to take refuge with books and crosswords.
The walks were well described and accurately graded, we felt. Although one or two of the descents were longer than implied but maybe that was because I am very very slow!!
The whole region is stunning with lots to do apart from walking. We didn't have great weather but it didn't dampen our walking spirits. And the views - wow!
By Mr Burn on 13/07/2014
Smoothly organised and unstressed providing an enjoyable holiday
By Mr Prior on 13/07/2014
Excellent comfortable friendly hotels with unforgettable views .
By Mrs Hodgskinson on 12/07/2014
Great location to be based for walking in the Dolomites, Bellevue Park hotel food is very good, their baths big and very welcome after a long day in tthe and the mountains themselves are magnificent. Walking notes are comprehensive, would just suggest you add a couple of routes which start out in one location and finish up elsewhere on the bus network - Tres Chime early bus is ideal - this offers some fantastic route options and minimises the amount of up. Only regret we didn't get a bit of Via Ferrata training whilst out there, would have vastly increased what we could do. Loved every minute. Tagged on three days in Verona and four days in Venice. Probably one of the best and most varied holidays we've ever done
By Mrs Wakefield on 11/07/2014
We really enjoyed this holiday. Moving from hotel to hotel provides much variety. There was a real problem getting drinks especially at the castle hotel. A welcome drink immediately on arrival at the hotel should be offered especially as people are very tired and thirsty after a long walk in the heat.
Also the communication at the Castle Hotel needs to be improved, e.g. no one told us where to go for dinner when it was not outside as on the first evening.
However, we really enjoyed the holiday in spite of these little things.
By Mrs May on 11/07/2014
On this itinerary the length and gradient of the walks are not so suitable for the over 65s - we experienced them as three-boots rather than 2 on account of our age.
Your notes are very well written, congratulations. We never went wrong and rarely used the maps.
The menus on this gastronomic holiday were surprisingly limited - should have guessed they would be though. There was one evening when we could not face the foie gras and duck again so crept out for a cheap Italian despite having paid for the gastronomic bore. We cannot blame Headwater for this, please note.
Throughout the service was very good. The landscape and local attractions were outstanding. The routes were creatively chosen. Thanks!
By Mrs Hutchison on 11/07/2014
A reasonably energetic yet wonderfully relaxed walking holiday.
By Mr Hamilton on 10/07/2014
This was one of most enjoyable and exciting Headwater walks we have experienced. Istria was unknown to us and we loved the hill-top towns where the 'truffle is king'! cuisine was superb and the hotel staff and local residents so friendly. The local rep was the most conscientious, helpful and friendly we have ever met. Please extend our thanks to her. The 'good' comment on Comfort at the last hotel related simply to the failure of the air conditioning system which was freezing. This was resolved by the staff. Fabulous holiday and the weather gave us ideal conditions.
By Mrs Hartland-mahon on 10/07/2014
An excellent holiday with breathtaking scenery.
By Mis Nicholls on 10/07/2014
The holiday surpassed expectations in terms of location, food and hotels. All in all, excellent value for money!
By Mr Sidey on 10/07/2014
Overall summary is that we thought the walks were excellent with a variety of scenery. The hotels were generally very good and the staff as well as local people were friendly and helpful. It is a beautiful area with lovely villages and towns being part of the walking route.
By Ms Harris on 09/07/2014
Excellent service, tailored to us at very last minute. Wonderful hotels (with exception of the Assissi hotel which was nowhere near the quality of the others).terrific walks. We had fewer rests days which suited us - a days rest on day 2 felt too soon so we didn't and assiss is very very touristy though beautiful. We are already looking at our next holiday with you (and we always travel independetly so that's a big sign of our enjoyment).
By Mrs Pritchett on 09/07/2014
Beautiful part of France, stunning gorge scenery. Hotel in brilliant location right on riverside. Excellent food with choice from whole menu every day + chef's special of the day for each course. Highlight was lots of lovely butterflies!
By Mr Williams on 08/07/2014
Overall an enjoyable holiday, the walks are definitely in the 2 boot category but using the cable cars means much of the walking is flat or downhill. The scenery is majestic providing you can see it for the clouds! Go prepared for mixed weather, we were in Kandersteg in early July and had everything from glorious sunshine to sleet (above Oeschinensee) by way of rain and thunderstorms. We were lucky enough to see an ibex, marmots and an eagle (at the top of Gemmi Pass). The paths were all well maintained and the signage is very good making the navigation easy.
The hotel is welcoming and the rooms comfortable if somewhat dated in decor and furniture. The food is good but be aware that it's a 4 course set menu with just a choice of 2 main courses (or an unspecified vegetarian option). The 'lunch buffet' where you can make up your own packed lunch at breakfast time is a good idea.
The travel arrangements all worked well and the Swiss trains were on time as expected. Being a Saturday the train from Zurich Airport to Bern (and return) can be busy and does not cater particularly well for luggage, we had to leave our bags in the area by the doors along with a number of others. The reserved seats that Headwater provided were necessary but these were upstairs away from our bags. Also note that the train from Bern to Kandersteg splits at Speiz with only the front portion going to Kandersteg and Brig, we didn't find this entirely obvious when boarding the train. It's not a big problem as the ticket inspector checks that you're in the right part of the train but it's easier if you don't have to move yourself and your bags at one of the stops.
By Mr Beresford on 07/07/2014
A great holiday based in an excellent friendly hotel with good local food. The walks,starting from the hotel or via a short train, bus or cable car ride,were interesting and varied. The walks are deserving of the 2 boot status, taking most of the day to complete with the suggested extensions, allowing time for photographs, eating the excellent hotel picnics and admiring the views and the magnificent alpine flowers in June.
By Mrs Robertson on 07/07/2014
A stress free walking holiday knowing that hotels are well chosen , routes are well documented and local tour operator is easily contactable.
By Mrs Royle on 05/07/2014
We thoroughly enjoyed walking in the Dolomites staying in Dobiacco/Toblach at Park Bellevue Hotel. The food was superb and beautifully presented and served. The hotel staff were extremely friendly and helpful.The hotel and swimming facilities etc were fantastic. We found the walks brilliant, did not expect to be walking in snow in June! but the notes on the whole were easy to follow, just got lost once and sometimes it took us longer due to snow and several fallen trees over the path on one walk. The bus ticket which was included could be used on the train and provided excellent value for exploring the region and the nearby towns. Best of all we met really interesting people in the hotel who had come with Headwater or Exodus and we all got on very well.Have already recommended Headwater to friends.
By Mrs Wass on 04/07/2014
Excellent representative. Belvedere hotel a gem. Our overall perception is coloured by the fact that we hit a heatwave of mid-thirties degrees in the shade which, given the steepness of the hills, was exhausting. Excellent suggestions for the days off from walking.
By Mrs Ross on 01/07/2014
Very quiet comfortable and clean family run hotel in good location. Convenient for public transport and ice creams after a day's walking. A very good selection of walks, suitable for all abilties. We just needed longer to complete them all!
By Mrs Humphrey on 01/07/2014
very lucky with the weather . wild flowers were even better than expected.
By Mr Phillips on 01/07/2014
Thoroughly enjoyable from start to finish, directions for walks / routes easy to understand and very accurate, excellent mix of walking companions in our group, superb location and scenery, the week went too fast!
By Mrs Ife on 29/06/2014
Friendly and welcoming hotel, with good food and enjoyable and varied walks.
By Mr Smith on 29/06/2014
We were blessed with decent weather, and so enjoyed this 160km. very much. We found the O Munio De Pena a bit of a gloomy place, with Javier nowhere in sight until 8.30 that evening! The only other mild carp we have is at Sarria, where that last km. through the town was hard work. Could a pick-up closer to our entry into the town be considered?
Also, going into Arzua, the Pazo told us that if Headwater had told us we could have phoned the Pazo for a taxi from our entry into the town to the hotel for 4 euros! This could have been very valuable info. as we were being chased by a thunderstorm at that time! We also recommend the taxi back to the starting point next day.
By Mr Mason on 28/06/2014
Very leisurely walking combined with varied cultural sightseeing opportunities. A very beautiful part of Tuscany away from the hoards of tourists. Very enjoyable.
Villa Acquaviva is a wonderful place to stay. Very relaxing. Fabrizio and his team were very attentive and helpful at all times. Good vegetarian food options available.
An extremely well- organised holiday by Headwater.
By Mr Thompson-ashby on 28/06/2014
This was our first holiday with Headwater so we had no expectations on the grade of walk. As it turned out we coped very well, although our first day's walk to Assisi (the longer option) was tough, but we managed! The route notes were generally good, although they do need regular revision, as some signs etc. had been changed or removed. We did not lose our way, but less experienced walkers could have done so. The hotels were all good and some excellent. We particularly loved La Taviola for the way the staff went that extra mile to make us welcome and gave us a packed lunch without us asking for it, although the room we were given could hardly be describe as 'superior'. Our tour guide by his own admission seemed ready for a change. His briefing was perfunctory, but he was kind enough to lend us his walking poles. The walks were well designed - absolutely beautiful wildflowers and we didn't meet a single other traveller. Overall, a splendid holiday with good weather, a fabulous sense of history and pilgrimage plus great accommodation.
By Mrs Beverley on 27/06/2014
Generally very good
By Mrs Taylor on 26/06/2014
We paid £2082 of this holiday. During the trip we ascertained that the accommodation (and yes I have included the upgrades and breakfasts) were valued on booking.com as £911. Plus the two dinners at chez Norbert, say £100, then £1011. This means we have paid £1071 for transfers of baggage (we only paid 80 euros for a taxi from Turkheim to Basel), two maps and appalling route notes. Assuming you had a commission from the hotels based on your bulk buying power then you are rip off merchants. Why the dinner at Chez Norbert included? The choice was a not written but only a verbal one choice (pretty appalling option). We paid almost as much just upgrading to the normal menu as we could have eaten out at a local restaurant without . Is this philosophy to make you look generous because I can assure you it didn't work with us. The restaurant was closed on Tuesdays but no-one told us reception was also closed. They only gave us wifi codes for 24 hours, so we were without internet access for a day. My husband still works and needs internet access at all times. I realise I should have cross checked prices before booking and therefore blame myself for being ripped off, however this will most certainly not happen again. When the rep picked us up in Chatenois, he asked about our arrangements for onward travel - we told him we were intending to get train from Colmar to Basel late in
the day. He failed to tell us trains were on strike - left us to find out for ourselves and book a taxi to airport. What is the point of a rep who cannot give the most
simple advice. My advice to your future clients is 'don't be gullible -you can do better yourselves'
Dear Mrs Taylor,
Thank you for taking the time to complete our online questionnaire following your recent holiday to Alsace. Please be assured that all of the feedback we receive whether complimentary or critical is valuable in helping us to continue to improve and develop our holidays for the future and is always well received.
We were sorry to read that your holiday did not meet with your expectations; this was disappointing to hear as this holiday is normally a firm favourite with our customers. However, please be assured that we realise how important it is to maintain our high standards of accommodation and service, and we do appreciate we cannot afford to let our standards slip. Therefore all of your feedback has been passed on to the relevant UK and overseas departments and steps will be taken to improve where necessary. In closing we would like to thank you for your constructive comments and hope that despite the issues you have reported you had an enjoyable holiday overall.
Headwater Customer Service
By Mr Freeman on 26/06/2014
Fantastic combination of great scenery, good walks, superb hotel made a wonderful holiday.
By Mr Williams on 25/06/2014
Good range of walks in outstanding scenery.Surprising lack of facilities in Dobbiaco considering time of year e.g. Most shops closed- almost no bars or alternate restaurants!
By Mrs Walker on 24/06/2014
We chose a walking holiday because we enjoy walking and believe you get more of the atmosphere of where you are if you are on foot. After the airport we were driven to a gem of a hotel, with wonderful views and the sound and sight of swifts in the summer air. Our guide was very efficient and worked very hard to see that we got the most out of our stay. She was local and gave us sound information on what to expect. A couple of the days here saw quite high temperatures so we needed to make sure we had water or knew where we could get water on route.. The hotel at Buzet was also at the top of a peak so this is a holiday where you must be prepared to walk some high ups and downs. The third hotel at Opatija was very well situated and we had a very large room with a baloney. This hotel had a fish restaurant, the fish being caught locally the night before. On our final evening we had one of their superb fish meal on the terrace with the sound of soft live music in the background, which was a fitting closure to a very enjoyable holiday.
By Mr Pantridge on 24/06/2014
Well up to our expectations. The provision of a car was a necessity, given the varied locations of the daily walks, and allowed the schedule to be varied according to weather, and personal inclination. The hotel itself was a haven of hospitality and comfort in a peaceful part of Tuscany, with obliging staff and a good standard of facilities.
By Mrs Wood on 24/06/2014
Everything went smoothly with travel arrangements on outward and inward journeys.. Standard of food was exceptional for *** hotel. Would have appreciated a kettle in bedroom to make tea/coffee and fill hot water bottle. Very enjoyable holiday. Maps and information all very helpful and accurate.
By Mrs Bailey on 24/06/2014
We had a super week with like-minded people. Although we were all initially wary of socialising as a group, during the week we became closer and enjoyed each other's company. The hotel was fun - comfortable and friendly with multi-course meals of excellent quality that were welcome after a day's hiking. It was the antithesis of an impersonal chain hotel. The only thing it lacked was wifi outside of the reception area. And some reference books - for example for wild flowers - would have been useful.
The walks were spectacular, probably made more so by the fact that we were early in the season - mid June. Tre Cime and Mount Elmo were decidedly scary first thing in the morning before someone else had kicked foothills in the snow. We learned to catch the buses around 10am not 9am. The notes were not entirely accurate and read as if the walks had not been checked for some time. In fact it didn't matter as the local trails are well signposted. Every member of the group who did the Mount Elmo walk got lost and changed from the notes to the maps or signposts. The 'Churches and Chapels' walk was unexpectedly interesting and quite energetic despite being on quiet lanes (very quiet - we were passed by one car and two tractors in 4 hours). It was a good contrast to the other walks and well worth doing.
We appreciated the notes on eating places - or the lack of them. It was useful to know when a packed lunch was necessary.
The travel card was convenient. Buses ran regularly to the walk starting-points and were not crowded at this time of year. On one day we caught the train (next to the hotel) and explored Brunico. Every stop had something to look at (see the poster on the platform).
A number of people went on to Venice afterwards, an easy trip given the minibus to the airport and then a bus to the station or a water bus to St Mark's Square.
By Mrs Moss on 23/06/2014
We have just returned from another very enjoyable holiday, all the hotels were very good, in amazing locations with fantastic views. I would definitely upgrade to a sea view room at Grand Hotel Capodimonte, especially if staying on longer in Sorrento. The walks were varied and we had no real problem with the notes. Could be challenging to some as there are defiantly plenty of steps, both up and down, in many places! Walking poles very helpful. But you are rewarded with the views and the hotels.
All our pick ups where excellent by the local agent, and the rep phoned us on the first evening as promised. We know she was easy to contact if we needed her. So, overall, an good holiday exploring this part of Italy, Thank you again, Headwater.
By Ms Stearn on 23/06/2014
Having travelled and holidayed with headwater before we were pleased with this Holiday in Italy in Palazzuolo. This was a one centre holiday with very good food and friendly staff, and loved the 2 dogs. We found the walks very challenging particularly in the heat (beginning of June).
It is a very quiet village so in the evening once you have had the evening meal there isn't anything to do. Although there is a local bus service to Maradi (the local train station) it is not vey frequent. Would recommend hiring a car in future for this holiday.
By Mrs Van praag on 22/06/2014
Very enjoyable and relaxing. Lived upto expectations
By Mr McLeod on 21/06/2014
Enjoyable. In the inland parts the villages were lovely with less interesting walking, but the coastal walking was great.
By Mis Elliott on 21/06/2014
brochure, doe's not do justice to the astonishing location and overal excellence of the hotel which is 4 star and not 3 star as printed.We have looked at this holiday for at least 10 years, and booked this time as we are running out of options in France.
By Mis Walters on 20/06/2014
A thoroughly enjoyable experience. Croatia was a lovely country, the walks just right and the hotels great. The other couple on the walk were like minded and we got on really well.
By Mr Burns on 20/06/2014
Good holiday let down by three nights in a 2 star hotel with a tiny bathroom
Dear Mr Burns,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire following your recent holiday to Italy. Please be assured that all of the feedback we receive whether complimentary or critical is valuable in helping us to continue to improve and develop our holidays for the future.
With this in mind, over the winter, we have reviewed the feedback we have received for this holiday and from this have made the decision to change the 2 star hotel you refer too, this has been replaced with a 3 star hotel in Monterosso.
We are sure that you will agree this change will continue to add to the quality and enjoyment of this holiday overall.
In closing, we would like to thank you for travelling with Headwater this summer. We look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater customer service team
By Mrs Oram on 20/06/2014
Mt Subasio is a wonderful area in which to walk and the routes ensure good variety of walking. Spello is a lovely town (and Albergo Bastiglia a comfortable hotel with excellent food) to use as a base for further local travel (e.g. Perugia) and for relaxing pre/post the holiday.
The hotel at Assisi was very welcoming, but location is not great (neither in town nor out & on a busy road).
By Mr Ball on 20/06/2014
A lovely hotel (small and family-run) in a beautiful landscape. All food locally sourced as much as possible. We chose to pay extra for a better room, more spacious and with private terrace and a beautiful view, that was well worthwhile. I don't think we would have been happy in standard accommodation.
By Mrs Hickling on 19/06/2014
Slovenia was a beautiful and welcoming country with a good variety of points of interest along the walk.
By Mrs Smith on 18/06/2014
A wonderful holiday. The only exception were the packed lunches. They were dire and need looking in to by Headwater.Suggest future holiday makers make their own from the breakfast buffet.
By Mrs Donaldson on 17/06/2014
Our 3rd Headwater holiday, some wonderful places and characteful hotels. Everything good except:
Brochure implies more opportunities to get down to sea level for paddle or swim. In fact there wee only a couple of places an the notes did not make it clear that if you went on there wold be no other place to get to the sea.
Some of the terrain (cliff pathways that were rather a 'scramble') were a challenge fo a 2 boot walk.
One days route took us away from the coast and along a boring road for miles when we could have been following the spectacular coastal footpath. This was presumably so we could do that coastal section on a loop walk the next day. This was misguided though because we would much prefer the coast route in two directions than 5 miles along tarmac road inland with little of interest either side!
Lack of communication with last hotel over one of us being vegetarian (though fish eating). Hotel wasn't aware and with no local shops it was difficult to put new meal together.
By Mr Smith on 17/06/2014
A very good hotel on a lovely Island which provided an excellent base for a walking holiday on routes which were varied and not too 'testing'
By Mrs Welham on 16/06/2014
We had a fantastic holiday with Headwater and loved every minute of the walks which were well planned, with clear instructions. Everything worked as expected and it was a very easy way to walk the best of the area without any worries. Thank you.
By Mrs Mitchell on 16/06/2014
SERVICE IN ENGLAND WAS INFORMATIVE, AS IN ISTRIA (RAMONA). THE HOTEL VELA VRATA WAS VERY DISAPPOINTING. THE ROOM WAS SMALL, THE SHOWER KEPT GOING OFF. ALSO THE AIR CONDITINIONING COULD NOT BE PUT ON. THE ROOM WAS TOO HOT, BUT COULD NOT OPEN THE WINDOW BECAUSE OF THE NOISE FROM THE CAFE DOWN THE ROAD WHICH WENT ON TILL 3AM!!
By Dr Rose on 16/06/2014
This was a lovely walk in beautiful gentle countryside. For us the highlight was Vezelay which we might otherwise not have discovered .We used the wine service for the first time & found it really useful
By Mr Eyton-williams on 16/06/2014
The area was ideal for walking and very interesting. The hotels, service and locations chosen were good, but the route notes need updating as at times were confusing to the extent that all members of the group got lost at a couple of points during the week. Maps (IGN) supplied were excellent. It was the maps that enabled us to find our way. Suggested visits on rest days were most helpful and the Stork Center is well worth a visit
Overall we did enjoy our holiday and would happily visit the region again!
By Mr Joyce on 15/06/2014
Update the walk notes, they are very out of date and unusually for Headwater quite irritating
Dear Mr Joyce, Thank you for your feedback. I have passed on your comments to the programme manger for the region,she is currently in the process of updating the route notes, unfortunately, there have been a number of amendments needed due to the unusually poor weather experienced in this area over the winter. Please accept our sincere apologies for any inconvenience this may have caused. We hope that despite this issue, you had an enjoyable holiday overall.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mrs White on 15/06/2014
We loved the island, the walks and the hotel. The staff were all very friendly and helpful, just a little disappointed with the food at dinner: usually it was fine and occasionally good. Had our best meal on the way home at Meson Galicia in Es Mercadal near the car park with excellent views of mount Torro.
By Mrs Gardner on 13/06/2014
Overall the holiday was a pleasant experience with hotels of high standard in good locations. Those preferring a twin-bedded room should be aware that these are rare in Austria and in particular in the hotels used for this holiday.
By Mrs Evans on 13/06/2014
Fantastic holiday - very good walks and directions. Only niggle was the train journey in Spain as instructions about tickets not clear. Ticket booth at Barcelona closed so ended up buying wrong ticket and then having to pay again on train. Again on return journey not enough detail about buying ticket and when I rang rep unfortunately he did not know so made journey slightly stressful! Overall a very enjoyable holiday
By Mr Rodger on 13/06/2014
Unfortunately I am getting too old for even 1 boot holidays ! Apart from that I have enjoyed all my Headwater holidays.
By Mrs Young on 12/06/2014
Terrific holiday in with superb views, excellent food and wine with delightful walks.
By Mr Williams on 12/06/2014
The Tarn area is an location for activity holidays and for seeing wildlife and flowers.
By Mrs Williams on 12/06/2014
MB Travel were superb everything ran like clockwork, never late unless advised in advance and always friendly. We knew they were available on the end of the phone if we needed them for anything at all. Would certainly recommend this holiday. We are hoping to book an Italian walking trip next year. Thank you Headwater we wish we'd done it years ago.
By Mrs Turnbull on 12/06/2014
Gozo was a great island to explore on foot. The local bus service was excellent and buying a weekly ticket was excellent value. The walks along the cliff tops were spectacular. The hotel was lovely and the pools a perfect place to relax aftrea days walking.
By Mr Sheppard on 11/06/2014
very well organised; good selection of hotels; interesting walks and locations; good suggestions for free days with helpful notes about the history of the region and landscapes.
By Ms King-smith on 10/06/2014
We thoroughly enjoyed the Hotel Xander. The staff are friendly and well-trained and the food is good and there's plenty of it. My only gripe is that often the lunchtime sandwiches were poor - somewhat thrown together rather than carefully assembled - and with boring ingredients which were always the same.
Other than that, I loved the place and would happily go back.
By Mr Bond on 10/06/2014
Overall a delightful holiday and good walking notes, however the first 2 boot walk over the Hoochmoos was described as starting with the Kreith chairlift. Having encountered a similar issue in Oberammergau a couple of years back we phoned and asked you to check with the Hotel Xander specifically that the lift was running on the first Sunday. Your Operations staff called me back and assured me that it was. On our arrival the hotel staff said that it was not running until much later in the season and that this was common knowledge!
The Lost Valley walk should NOT feature without further amplification.....the entire meadow area and path is subject to massive construction to stabilise the valley after a near disaster and mud/rock slide as described by the mountain restaurant.....this happened last winter, so again someone has taken their eye off the ball!!!
The Hotel is in a idyllic spot and the variety of walking huge....we did all the 2 boot walks in a trip to Innsbruck which should not be missed. Disappointed that a hotel should charge for Internet WIFI in this day and age, especially when mountain walking and reliant on weather forecasts. The hotel had a brief pictorial forecast with Austrian text which was not comprehensive enough...
Dear Mr Bond,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire, and for providing us with your constructive feedback, please be assured that all of the feedback we receive is used to help improve and develop our holidays for the future and is always well received.
We were thrilled to read that you had a delightful holiday and found our walking notes useful.
Although, we were sorry to read that your arrival coincided with the Kreith chairlift closure. We would like to apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused. The hotelier advised us prior to the start of the season that this lift would be in full operation; we are sorry this was not the case due to construction work on the slope.
In order to improve our communication with our customers, we have asked the hotelier to ensure we are updated on changes that may affect our customers holiday.
We have also temporarily removed the Lost Valley walk whilst the construction is completed. Replacement walks are available during this time.
In closing, we would like to thank you for your feedback and the wonderful photographs you have provided, we hope to use these in our future brochure and web pages.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mr Emerson on 09/06/2014
Headwater provides interesting and enjoyable holidays with well chosen walking routes and accomodation.
By Mrs Lai on 09/06/2014
Tuscany was a beautiful region with a great mix of walks in wonderful countryside and stunning cities/towns full of history and lovely architecture. The reps, Jim and Kate, were so helpful, thoughtful and genuinely caring - the best we've come across.
By Mr Burch on 08/06/2014
Our holiday was well organised and the hotel was comfortable and friendly. The walks were well chosen and the self-guiding notes were informative and easy to follow. The only slightly disappointing aspect as the weather; it rained on most days, so I would advise potential travellers to be prepared for wet weather - especially early in the season.
By Mr Cross on 07/06/2014
Good first experience with friends who have been with you before.
By Mr Brown on 07/06/2014
This holiday is to be recommended for those enjoying exercise and the wines of Alsace. The latter is important as much time is spent in and around the vineyards.
By Mrs Elliott on 06/06/2014
The Venetian Hills holiday was a truly enjoyble experience. This is a little-known, unspoiled part of the country and ideal for walking. The welcome and service at all the hotels was second to none.
By Mr Curwen on 05/06/2014
The holiday at Aquaviva was wonderful, the facilities offered there are excellent. There's lots to do - breathtakingly beautiful walks through varied terrain and fascinating historical sites to visit. There's also plenty of wildlife in the area. We were serenaded by scops owls each eveing and saw fireflies for the first time - a magical experience.
By Mrs Baillie on 05/06/2014
Wonderful location with many walks close to the hotel.
By Mrs Hayes on 05/06/2014
this was wonderful holiday based in an amazing hotel with superb facilities
By Mr Stather on 04/06/2014
May is a good time to go for wildlife - and weather not too hot
By Mr Loaring on 03/06/2014
Our holiday was accurately described and meticulously planned. The logistics worked well and fell into place seamlessly. Our needs were well catered for and the luggage was looked after carefully as it was transported between hotels. We would not have wished to have stayed in anything less than four star designated hotels, and even some of those were only just adequate and of a standard we would have expected. The same rating does not confirm that all hotels are of a similar standard, and they can vary to a great extent. The best hotels, however, were very good indeed. The location and scenery were idyllic but the guide notes for each of the walks need greater detail in places and should avoid the use of vague terms such as 'after a short while...' as this gives little indication of how far or for how long you will have to walk before reaching the next way point. It would also be very useful to know when to expect a very steep climb or very narrow and rough paths.
By Ms Clarkson on 03/06/2014
Superb location excellent guide really had an excellent break. Beautiful location would love to go again and again
By Mrs Brown on 03/06/2014
Does what it says in the brochure - 7 days of interesting sights without using cars or trains - organisation during walk flawless.
By Mrs Currie on 03/06/2014
Excellent walking with fantastic scenery. All accommodation of high standard. Walking definitely 2 boot.
By Mrs Duncan on 03/06/2014
Can trust the organisation and information
By Mr Fendall on 02/06/2014
This was a first time using Headwater.It was an 8 day 'walking' holiday but only 4 days of designated walking and therefore 4 days to 'do your own thing'. Suggestions were made in the guidebook but apart from more walkng or visiting vineyards the villages of Alsace offer little in the way of 'other' activites. I feel that at least 5 (or even 6) days of designated walking would be more appropriate.Overall I enjoyed the experience as Alsace is an area liken no other in France.
By Mrs Taylor on 02/06/2014
The holiday overall was well planned and the location was beautiful .The Alsace villages that we visited were most attractive with the old buildings and the history associated with them. As two fit octogenarians we were fully capable of managing the walks.
By Ms Mulholland on 01/06/2014
As a solo walker I felt a great sense of achievement
By Dr Harrison on 01/06/2014
Walks were slightly different to those in brochure, not a problem, but needs up dating. Very relaxing and enjoyable holiday. Bermudan people are extremely friendly and helpful, why can't we all be like that? Buses and ferries very reliable.
Hotel looked a bit dated and the food was poor on Tues and Thurs - Island and Buffet night, so we went out as had read the headwater previous visitors book comments. Other nights the food was fantastic. Beach is rather small could be busy at peak times. Ran out of towels on 2 occasions. Can be very busy when the cruise ships are in.
Overall, the walks were longer than advertised but very enjoyable. We had a great time. Lovely way to see Bermuda and some bits that others may not get too - Coopers Island.
By Ms Pilgrim on 01/06/2014
The care and attention that the Reps provided in the area was outstanding, and having been on 2 previous Headwater holidays they both worked very hard trying to please everyone.. I felt that the holiday was accurately graded as a 2 boot holiday and all the walks were well within our capabilities but sufficiently challenging. The area was fantastic and May appears to be a great time to visit with all the spring flowers in bloom and pleasant temperatures. I am usually happy to return home but I could have stayed another week so am looking to repeat the experience in a similar region next year as is my walking companion.
By Mr Thompson on 30/05/2014
Could have been lovely but spoilt by many problems. Disappointed.
Dear Mr Thompson, We were sorry to read of your disappointment with your holiday, I will contact you directly for more information and hope to reinstate your faith in Headwater. Yours sincerely, Headwater customer service
By Mrs Price on 30/05/2014
We really enjoyed our Headwater walking in the Catalan region. The walking was a great combination of inland and coastal routes. The mediaeval villages were lovely and at this time of the year not overcrowded.
One or two of the walks had some challenging sections, particularly the suggested more interesting route to Begur on Day 4. We are older walkers and although experienced and fit we thought that the long relentless climb should come with a little more warning of the steepness. The weather was perfect for us but on very hot days this section of the route would be very demanding.
Otherwise the descriptions of the walks and the routes themselves were helpfully detailed and informative.
By Mis Perry on 29/05/2014
This is a lovely area of Italy and all the places we stayed were good. The travel arrangements worked like clockwork and the walks were lovely. My favourite Headwater holiday, so far.
By Mrs Rathmell on 29/05/2014
All was very efficient and the walking instructions were excellent
By Mrs Hughes on 29/05/2014
Stunning hotel and food in a little known part of Tuscany with fascinating range of walking/history/scenery/towns/coast.
By Ms Swinburne on 29/05/2014
Secrets o Sicily was probably one of the best holidays ever. The walking was great, the routes good, the accommodation (with one exception) excellent with good food. Everything you could want for comfort and enjoyment, but not at all fussy. Domenica at Baglio La Luna was great in letting us keep the room for the whole day before we flew back in the evening, and in offering us food in a location where there is nothing else. The help given in choosing appropriate accommodation for our two extra (lazy) days before we started the walking holiday was much appreciated. Thank you.
By Mrs Cushion on 29/05/2014
Probably not for 'casual' walkers as the walks seemed appropriate for experienced ones.
By Mr Daines on 29/05/2014
A great holiday in an off the beaten track location.
By Mr Fairweather on 29/05/2014
The Hotel El Milano Real was an excellent base for a walking holiday as several walks could be done directly from the hotel. The food was usually good, sometimes excellent but occasionally disappointing: the wines were generally very good and also very reasonably priced. The weather during the week was unseasonably cold, which spoiled our enjoyment of the highest climbing - we were unable even to attempt Morezon - but the superb walk to the Mirador was completed in very pleasant conditions and we were glad it wasn't too hot. The area is rich in flora and fauna, and May is a good time of year for observing it.
By Mrs Bryan on 29/05/2014
Fabulous hotel with excellent facilities, food and staff. Gozo is great for walking as it is so small. Beautiful views and lovely wild flowers. The bus service is excellent and very cheap - a weekly season ticket is only 6 euros 50. Very good comprehensive walking notes which were usually very clear, but we did have a couple of incidents where they could have been better explained. Our boat trip to Comino was great - the Blue lagoon is beautiful.
By Ms Hurst on 29/05/2014
Menorca is a really beautiful island and relatively unspoilt. May was ideal weather for walking and it was very quiet. The best walking by the sea that we have ever done. A week was not long enough so we will return1
By Mr Bevan on 28/05/2014
This was our first experience with Headwater although we have previously toured and trekked with a number of other companies. We were overall impressed, and would certainly consider Headwater for other walking or cycling holidays.
By Mrs Clifton on 28/05/2014
Hidden Valleys of Cordoba: a week at the charming Hotel Zuhayra in the pretty white mountain village of Zuheros in mid-May was all that six 70 somethings could wish for. Headwater certainly have a hit on their hands here. Very attentive, helpful staff, good regional food and wine, excellent, if strenuous in parts, walking and wonderful scenery. We added on two nights in Granada at the comfortable, centrally situated Hotel Dauro II from where it was an easy coach ride back to Malaga airport. Headwater's arrangements for our travel and stay were excellent.
By Mr Hall on 27/05/2014
Wonderful countryside for walking and great walks - with a spectacular meal at the end of every day.
By Ms Gibson on 27/05/2014
We had a wonderful week with a perfect combination of walking, sightseeing, swimming and sunbathing plus delicious food and glorious landscapes. The local reps couldn't have been more friendly and helpful; it was very reassuring to know that they were there in case anything went awry - but it didn't.
By Mr Ballantyne on 27/05/2014
il feudo is rather basic and rustic .Steep stairs no lift.Shower unit in bathroom fell off wall.,not a lot of pressure. Welcome was good though.
Villa Lussana all confection ---no lift Headwater customers on second floor. shower unit cracked and water only just warm enough.
For walkers some paths i found quite tough walking over tumbling rocks in the hills which could easily have been dangerous so you had to be vigilant. Having done a fair few walking hols i found this one quite tough . but may be age had something to do with it . i would have graded it a little higher i think.
But enjoyable all the same .Well its Italy ---whats not to like!!!!!!!
By Ms Thomson on 27/05/2014
Gozo is a delightful little island with beautiful scenery and flowers. Ta Cenc was a totally relaxing place to be and the staff were excellent.
By Mrs O'Connor on 26/05/2014
We both really enjoyed our Piedmont Holiday. All of the hotels we stayed at were very good, all quite different in character from one another which we liked. The Piedmont countryside is beautiful and the local people were so friendly. The walks were quite challenging, lots of hills, the steepest usually as you try to reach your hotel at the end of the day, but a great feeling when you do arrive.
The distances quoted on the route notes were much shorter than those that registered on my pedometer, I think perhaps these should be reviewed.
The local Headwater reps. Marsha and Esme were fantastic, very helpful, friendly and punctual.
The meals in the evening were usually taken in local restaurants, our favourites Osteria dei Catari and Locanda del Centro, the more rustic of the bunch. Only negative for us was The Ristarante il Castello, beautiful building, shame about the atmosphere, formality taken to the limit, neither diners nor staff seemed to be having a good time. We were due to dine there twice, but decided to give the second visit a miss.
Apart from that a brilliant holiday. Pat O'Connor
By Mr Savage on 26/05/2014
Well organised and enjoyable holiday
By Mrs Norris on 25/05/2014
Your questions are too black and white. Whilst we would use Headwater again we have serious reservations. Hotel rooms are almost always on the top floor. We pay you to carry our bags and carrying them down and sometimes up 3 flights is bad. Food was variable- certainly I would say we enjoyed the history and prehistory much more than the food. Before leaving your office staff wanted us to pay locally for a taxi at Sarlat to take us to the station. In fact Claire took us and it was very easy for her to do so. I do not understand why this should ever have been a problem. I felt that the 4 Canadians who perhaps booked before us were considered first in terms of transport arrangements. Inntravel never charges extra once an arrangement is made.
By Mr Propert on 25/05/2014
Before you book, it would be useful to know the days when meals are not available. For example, at Spello the food is highly rated (an attraction for us) but we had two Wednesdays there, had had to walk the entire length of the town, returning in rain one evening, to get our alternative meal. It was good - but frankly, it is too far. At Assissi, it would be better to make it more clear that while you enjoy a brief tour of the town on the high route, you then have quite a trek out to the hotel. And the food here, is simply poor - but I guess choices are limited. We upgrade everything - and at la Tavola the food was excellent, but our upgrade room (10) was dire - it was not an upgrade! And it is really time to update the notes - we did not get lost, but bits are horrendous - ruts and mud, and things like benches 'from which to contemplate' - but broken down.
Our next holiday with you is in Germany - why oh why do you not do more there??
Dear Mr Propert,
Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire and for your constructive comments. Your feedback has been passed on to the programme manager and our local rep. Following on from your comments improvement have been put into place. We now provide a taxi to transfer customers to and from dinner in Spello when required. Unfortunately due to the unusually poor weather over the winter some of the routes were still quite muddy when you travelled out in early May. However this will remedy itself as the weather improves over spring. All route notes have now been checked and are up to date. We would like to apologise that you were given the incorrect room on arrival to the La Tavola the reservation team are sorry for this oversight and have assured us that this was a one off incident. A refund will be issued immediately. We would like to thank you for travelling with Headwater this summer and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
Headwater Customer Service team
By Mr Turton on 25/05/2014
The hotel is in an excellent rural location. Menorca in May is ideal for walking. It's not cheap but is good value if you can afford it.
By Mrs Marchant on 24/05/2014
Overall a good holiday with (mostly) good weather and great eruptions on Stromboli. Some parts are excellent (the walks are good and the Stromboli climb is excellent). Some parts just don't work. It's utter madness to include dinner on all 3 nights on Lipari - the food at the Rocce Azzurre is poor (edible, but certainly not any sort of local specialities) and there are lots of far better eating options nearby. Please also ask all the hotels to stop serving tinned fruit at breakfast - the markets are heaving with the most fantastic fresh fruit and every hotel just provided tinned peaches, pears and prunes. The Etna day also needs reviewing. There were 4 separate couples doing the same non-guided trip, so Headwater made significant savings on all the transfers by putting us into one group (which was fine). However, on arrival at Etna we had to wait to find out if the trip was going to run as the weather was poor, but the driver was unable to wait for us as he had another appointment. We knew the weather was going to be poor so we emailed the local rep the day before but no-one responded. Surely there must be a better process than having to get up early, arrange early breakfast, drive for an hour to Etna, find out that the trip isn't running, wait around for a few hours to get the driver back and then drive another hour back to Taormina. It feels very much as though you're on your own.
I would recommend that the onus be put on the local rep to find out what is likely to happen on Etna the day before the trip is due to happen, and then leave info for Headwater guests at the Corso/Continental with an idea of what the itinerary is likely to be. Guests would then have a more informed choice of whether to go along with the trip (potentially in wind/fog/rain etc) or whether to stay in Taormina.
More info on alternative hydrofoil/ferry options would also have been useful. On our Vulcano day all the ferries stopped due to high winds, but we were able to get a private boat - this would have been easier to find if it was mentioned in the notes. We also did the walks in the order suggested in the notes whereas if it was suggested to look at the weather first it would have been more sensible to do the Vulcano trip on the first day on Lipari and the Quattropani walk on the second.
Dear Mrs Marchant, Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire. Please be assured that all of the feedback we receive is useful in assisting us to continue to improve and develop our holidays for future customers and is always well received. It was great to see that you enjoyed your holiday to Sicily and were lucky enough to witness the eruptions on Stromboli, I am sure it was an amazing sight. We would also like to thank you for your constructive feedback, I have discussed your comments with the Programme manager for the region and we have since put measures in to place where improvements are required. These include insisting the hoteliers serve fresh fruit at breakfast. We are also decreasing the amount of dinners included in Lipari to allow our customers to sample the local restaurants and are working closely with our local agent to improve the information and service provided on the Etna day, unfortunately, due to the very fast changing weather conditions on the volcano it is sometimes necessary to delay or cancel the trip. Although as this is a highlight to most peoples holiday, from past customer feedback, whilst it is sometimes frustrating waiting around depending on the weather, most customers say they would have preferred this option, however, we appreciate some people would rather not go if the weather is poor beforehand therefore, we will give our customers the option to stay at the hotel in future.
Our route notes are updated seasonally and then throughout the season as required, we will consider your suggestions when the next update is due. Whilst I realise these amendments do not help you personally. I do hope that it goes some way to show we take your feedback seriously.
Yours sincerely, Headwater Customer Service team.
By Mr Thompson on 23/05/2014
We enjoyed the holiday but did find some of the walks challenging. The accommodation was good but the quality of the food at the Hotel Rosa was outstanding.
By Mr Robertson on 23/05/2014
First try at a walking holiday and enjoyed it thoroughly. Would certainly recommend it.
By Mrs McQuin on 21/05/2014
Beautiful setting, no hidden extras, peaceful.
By Mr Wyatt on 18/05/2014
Overall holiday was good. Never saw rep, although not really necessary. Big hotels at punta campanella and sorrento not great as they cater for the mass coach trip market and lose personal touch. We met inntravel (or possibly atg) walkers in punta campanella staying in small hotel which was idyllic. Luna convento excellent and set a high bar others did not come close to. Sorrento particularly disappointing as it was in chaos and couldn't handle the number of guests . It was the first time in 50 years travelling i have had to queue (30 minutes) for a dinner table. Food also left much to be desired. A smaller hotel in town might be a better bet and certainly more our preference
Dear Mr Wyatt, Thank you for your feedback. We were pleased to see that you enjoyed your holiday overall. We were however sorry to see that you did not receive your welcome brief on arrival, this is usually carried out via telephone. We will ensure this is made clearer in our documentation for future customers. We were also sorry to see you were disappointed with some of the hotels you stayed in due to the size and lack of personal touch, wherever possible we try to use small and friendly hotels. I have passed on your feedback to our programme manager for their consideration. We would like to thank you for travelling with Headwater this summer and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future.
By Ms Weber on 17/05/2014
Beautiful walks and great hotels - particularly liked Pedralva.
By Dr Evans on 16/05/2014
The accommodation was variable between wonderful and very simple.
We were suprised by how few vegetables we were available both in the accommodations and in restaurants.
At the end of some of the walk sections the instructions/directions were less clear and this was a problem when you are tired at the end of a days walking.
We were part of the party with the Raeburns were there was a muddle about our tour of Leon which we missed out on. That shouldn't have happened.
By Mrs Cameron on 15/05/2014
Idyllic setting but some disappointments. See below
By Mrs Langleben on 13/05/2014
We are seasoned Headwater clients and have been more than happy with all the holidays we have taken with the company.
By Mr Martin on 09/05/2014
On our arrival we were welcomed by our driver Señor Russo who we found to be both entertaining and informative. Throughout our stay he was always punctual and reliable. Although we never actually met the resort agent she rang us to advise about adverse weather condition, diversions and alternative routes. Unfortunately we experienced poor weather but it did not interfere with our enjoyment of the holiday and we managed to complete the planned itinery. Overall all the htels were good and we were delighted to find our accommodation had been upgraded at the Pumta Campanelle where we had the benefit of a suite and a large sun terrace. We have only two observations to make to improve the holiday:
(1) The cost of porterage at 3 euros per bag on arrival and departure should either be included in the holiday cost or guests advised of this in the holiday information.
(2) the time of departure for the airport should be included in the holiday informattion to avoid guests having to make an educated guess based on flight times.
By Mr Flanagan on 07/05/2014
A wonderful mixture of healthy exercise,beautiful scenery, fantastic food and friendly people.
By Mrs Arlett on 07/05/2014
This was a very enjoyable holiday. The walks, locations, itinerary and choice of hotels were all well thought out. We enjoyed the variety of walks and the wild flowers were stunning. Spotting a Bonelli Eagle was one of the highlights. Our local reps looked after us well, leaving us to be independent but stepping in when required - for example, sorting out a hotel in Trapani when our boat trip to Marettimo was delayed due to high winds. We found some of the walks quite tough but rewarding. The hotels were varied and our favourite was the self catering on Marettimo.
By Mr Ainger on 07/05/2014
We thoroughly enjoyed the holiday. The walking mix was good, and flowers, birds, sea and sun were a great combination. Marettimo was special.
By Mrs Dewar on 06/05/2014
A really good holiday, much enjoyed.
By Mrs Grundy on 28/04/2014
Headwater holidays always live up to the descriptions in the brochure. Well planned walks, mainly excellent food and accomodation.
We had a great holiday. Well done Headwater.
By Dr Walsh atkins on 28/04/2014
Was not sent any walking notes which was a problem. Hotel had none and Rep-George- in his 60 second briefing- was uninterested in this. After some nagging he sent me some notes-but they mainly concerned the cycling holiday based in another hotel which with 24 km cycles etc was not that much use. Sorted myself out eventually as I managed to get hold of a good map which had good walking routes linked to bus routes which was great. Hotel excellent and travel arrangements fine.
By Mrs Evans on 26/04/2014
This was a great holiday. It's the walks are fairly straightforward, but there are some long days. The arrangement by Headwater worked like clockwork. The hotels are well-chosen and generally of a good standard. Our favourites were the 2 rectorals and Paze Santa Maria. This was a great way to explore the Camino de Santiago.
By Mr Ausden on 25/04/2014
Could not be faulted to be perfectly honest, excellent accomodation throughout,well balanced walking itinerary, first class route notes and maps.The Amalfi coast was everything we hoped it would be and more, a great holiday.
By Ms Parks on 25/04/2014
Fantastic locations with carefully selected routes and hotels. Descriptions of the walks for for self guided tour where very easy to follow and very accurate.
By Mr O'Hara on 22/04/2014
Beautiful scenery, some challenging aspects to the walking, helpful staff and interesting locations.
By Mr Brady on 21/04/2014
We understand that Portuguese Railways will not accept corporate bookings so you need to make it absolutely clear at the outset that travellers need to arrange their own rail travel from Lisbon to Tunes and give them clear guidance on how to do that. Their web site is not too easy to follow. You should also make it clear that it is possible to fly to Faro and take the local train from there.
If your guests are arriving in Vila do Bispo on a Saturday, they need to know that the shops noted in your guide book are closed from 1300 and all day on Sunday. However, all is not lost because there is a Lidl supermarket that is 'open all hours' providing freshly baked bread and pastries and a range of other picnic items.
Finally, the lighthouse at Cape St Vincent is not open on Mondays.
By Mrs Boram on 20/04/2014
The dusk hike on Stromboli was incredible and was the highlight of our holiday.
By Mrs Organ on 17/04/2014
The overall holiday was very enjoyable, well planned with a good mix of site seeing and excellent walking in a little known but beautiful part of Sicily, all local
Agents were on time and efficient, Carlos in particular was well informed and helpful, others were less so.. We opted to pay extra to have some time sight seeing in Palermo on the last day. This caused quite a lot of arranging and could have been offered to us before we went, The last hotel was not good. The food was very poor, bit like school dinners and as it was in such an isolated location it was not possible to walk to any where else as another choice to eat, it was a long distance from the planned walks in the reserve so it entailed long taxi rides to and for , which seemed pointless and made the whole thing rather regulated rather than the freedom offered at the other hotels and locations. In addition I had been persuaded to pay 60 Euro extra by the U.K. Booking agent from Headwater for a room with a sea view and little patio when in fact all it was was an ordinary room with rather a small window which did look over the sea, a rip off.
By Dr Daniell on 15/04/2014
Good walks, excellent hotels but the food was disappointing and was a bit of a downer. Not sure you know about the substitute walk on day 4 but it was a hazardous in places and in the UK the footpath would have been closed to the public. There were sheer drops below narrow footpaths on the levadas with no hand rails. Our overall score would be 6 out of ten for this one.
By Ms Murton on 14/04/2014
Ludmilla and Tony were both efficient and enthusiastic. April is an ideal time to go to Portugal - longer days and not too hot for walking. It's worth pre-arranging a day to cater to your special interests - we chose birdwatching and wild orchid hunting. We also pre-booked our train from Lisbon to Tunes and got a good discount for seniors.
By Mrs Wilson on 14/04/2014
I can't fill in the travel section because we were air/self drive. There are some comments I would like to make
1 The map situation was dire.You say in the walking notes that the map you provide is the 'Sierra de Gredos 1:25000. You gave us a map which was an area to the South West of where we were in Hoyos de Espina. We should have been given the correct map and it is 1: 50000 not the above. As you point out the other map (Parque Regional de La Sierra de Gredos) which is 1:25000 only covers the Plataforma area.
2 The spa was not open until the Friday of our stay and that should have been made clear in the notes/brochure.
Otherwise we loved it, the hotel was lovely and food delicious (also v good wine list) and will probably book again next year
By Mrs Preshaw on 14/04/2014
One of the best walking holidays we have had. Easy route notes to follow which took us to every corner of a small island using good local buses to get us to and from the walks which did not start or finish at the hotel. We were based at a superb luxury hotel with a fantastic relaxed atmosphere with superb views of Malta and bedrooms in a fantastic garden setting and overlooking the pool. The friendly staff and the service they gave were in a class of their own as was the breakfast buffet and the choice of dishes for dinner each evening was also excellent.
By Mr Dodds on 12/04/2014
We found Gozo quite charming and we believe we visited at just the right time of year - we do not think we would go any later because the holiday was enchanting principally because of the spring flowers and scenery at this time of year . Also the hotel was probably just sufficiently busy but not overcrowded which it might well be later in the year . The principal attractions of spring flowers, easy walking , friendly people and an excellent hotel made for a memorable 7 days
By Mrs Payne on 06/04/2014
A good holiday, fun accommodation in village houses and one very good hotel at each end, though sadly the weather was really poor for walking on this occasion. The tour reps were absolutely excellent, knowledgeable,helpful and thoughtful.
We would certainly want to go again, though perhaps a one boot+ was too much for me.
By Mis Bursey on 03/04/2014
Only the weather let us down.... The hotel was delightful and the staff really helpful; the food was execllent and certainly pleantiful with the breakfasts well deserving of the description 'amazing'. Snow and rain prevented our walking as we had hoped and there is little else to do in the immediate vicinity but lots of beautiful places to see if you are prepared to drive (and the roads are surprisingly good).
By Mr Valerio on 01/04/2014
Excellent holiday though somewhat marred by some wet weather. At 79 years I did find some of the very steep long gradients tough on the knees and without trekking poles would have found one 500m descent on wet clay almost impossible.
MB Travel were first class and promptly found us an alternative walk when the original route was washed out.
The staff at the Porto Bay Serra Golf Hotel were very quick to find a lost mobile phone and immediately delivered it by car to the next hotel that we had moved to - great service.
By Dr McClean on 28/03/2014
We were looking for a more relaxing walking holiday and this was perfect. We have had many holidays with headwater and the standard is always good. I have introduced friends to this company.
By Ms Wager on 26/03/2014
Gozo is a lovely unspoilt Island - very green with lots of wild flowers in early spring.
The Ta Cenc Hotel has a wonderful location. The staff are very friendly and helpful.
All in all a most enjoyable weeks holiday
By Dr Banks on 26/03/2014
Ta cenc was a lovely hotel, very comfortable, big rooms, good food, friendly and helpful staff. Walks in Gozo were beautiful around the cliffs and through the valleys but some of the road walking was less pleasant and unavoidable.
By Mr Kalfayan on 23/03/2014
Excellent destination (Gozo) for gentle walking at this time of year. Great feeling of solitude, some days we hardly saw anybody else out in the countryside. Very friendly staff; whole island seemed safe, easy to get around, welcoming, low-key. Excellent views, wild flowers, dramatic coastlines, interesting archeological sites.
By Mr Blain on 20/03/2014
For what we required-an escape from rain and winter dismal Ta Cenc was fine,and the walks laid out in your leaflet were easy enough to cope with for an oldie (84) like me who can no longer cope with real peaks and the tougher walking of middle age. Returning daily to the warm water pool and jacuzzi was a real bonus. But and we think you should Know this, Ta Cenc is getting a bit tired. Staff were delightful and the room very comfortable, BUT the lighting was abysmal if you wished to read in bed. Plumbing too was poor-no pressure on sink taps and infuriating variations of temp in the shower:quite dangerous in fact as nearly scalding water gushed unexpectedly. Infuriating when it ran bitterly cold We complained but it wasn't fixed. There was also a a 60 euro miscalculation on the bill which to be fair was rectified with good grace. No wonder that the owner Mr Borgon turned on max charm while we were waiting to be taken to the airport.. Just a tad complacent all round we thought.
Dear Mr Blain,
Thank you for taking the time to complete our on line questionnaire and for the feedback you have provided.
We were pleased to read that you enjoyed your holiday and found the walks suitable for your level of ability. It was also good to see that you enjoyed the facilities that the hotel has to offer.
I am sorry however that you had some issues with the maintenance and plumbing in your room. We have passed on your feedback to the hotel, they have offered a sincere apology to you and Mrs Blain and have assured us that they have fixed the issues you had reported. Including replacing the light bulbs for brighter ones and fixing the pressure issue in the bathroom.
Please be assured that we do realise how important it is to maintain our high standards of accommodation and service, and we do appreciate we cannot afford to let our standards slip.
We will continue to monitor this hotel to ensure that the high standards that both our customers and Headwater expect are maintained.
We would like to thank you for bringing these matters to our attention, and apologise most sincerely once again that you had cause for complaint.
By Mr Wright on 19/03/2014
Walking pretty much as described, care needs to be taken on switching from rail track to road and vice versa… Avoid multiple bus changes at weekends as they run less frequently. The hotel has large parties of sporty types out of season, try to find out if any are there while you plan to stay, if there are, don't book. They are loud, boorish and their behaviour is totally unacceptable. Don’t expect the shop to be open out of season. Do take the ferries, though only one runs out of season. Do explore apart from your route notes, there are many other nature reserves to visit and also ramble around headlands, Simson's island particularly rewarding. The friendliness of the local people and the great hotel staff contribute to making this a really special destination and the stunning scenery everywhere is overwhelming.
By Mrs King on 19/03/2014
I would thoroughly recommend the holiday but perhaps making own travel arrangements.The connection times between Lisbon airport and rain station were over generous. I can only think tis is a failsafe because the trains are not very frequent.One couple had made own arrangements of flight to Faro The train journey to Tunes was much shorter., and connections much more satisfactory
By mr Shadwell on 13/03/2014
We thoroughly enjoyed the holiday and thought it was very good value for the money. For us it was only marred by our experience on our second night at the Porto Bay Serra Golf Hotel. The hotel dining room was full on this night, but there were only two staff to serve about 40 people. Consequently the service was very slow. After our main course we requested a menu to choose a dessert, but after waiting for 20 minutes for the menu we gave up and went back to our room. Also, we should have been given a packed lunch the following day, but this did not happen. We should have reminded them the night before, but because they were so short staffed, we could not find anyone to mention it to. Otherwise this was a lovely hotel, perhaps we just caught them on an off day.
The packed lunch we received from the Quintar do Furao, was excellent.
The overall experience was very enjoyable and exceeded our expectations.