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Austrian Lakes Walk

Austrian Lakes Walk

Austrian Lakes Walk

  • Snow-capped peaks, lush green meadows and unspoilt forest trails
  • Luxury 3 and 4-star hotels throughout
  • Crystal-clear lakes, babbling streams, tranquil shores, secluded bays
  • Picturesque waterfront villages, postcard-pretty castles and cobbled streets crammed with attractive frescoed houses
  • Varied rest day choices: water sports, mountain rail rides, lake cruisers and Mozart's fairytale city of Salzburg
  • Holiday type8 nights, Self-guided walking
  • Activity rating
  • From $1515
    Excellent for
  • Holiday details
  • Departs Every two days from 19 May '17 to 20 Sep '17
  • All continental breakfasts and 8 evening meals
  • Managed locally by Headwater employed representative
  • Sustainability rating: 95%
  • Route notes and maps provided
  • Luggage transfers between hotels

We're here to help

If you've any questions about this holiday call to our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 , or email sales@headwater.com

The Salzkammergut area (Austria's Lake District) is one of the most impressive regions in the heart of the country. Boasting 76 lakes and with a beautiful mountain backdrop, it's a perfect place to relax and let the calming atmosphere envelop you. This 8-night self-guided walking holiday offers a selection of activities, where you'll enjoy a mix of spectacular scenic views, gentle shoreline routes, wooded forest trails and 'chocolate' box villages. There are also some great spots to stop off for a swim or dip your toes after a day's walking. The walks are relaxed, following mainly well-marked routes, and you can extend them on most days.

You'll spend three nights in the wonderful riverside spa town of Bad Ischl - a favourite summer holiday retreat of Emperor Franz Joseph. Although it's almost 100 years since the emperor was last there, his presence is still felt in the region, and you can explore the Kaiservilla, his former holiday home. Other highlights include walking via the UNESCO village of Halstatt for picture-postcard views, the imperial spa, salt mines, ice cave, the Katrin cable car and the Siriuskogl viewing platform.

Stop off at the town of St Wolfgang, renowned for its beautiful C15 church (you can sit in the arched windows and enjoy your lunch al fresco from here), and hop on the antique cog railway up to the summit of the Schafberg for unrivalled Alpine views. Visit St Wolfgang's Pfarrkirche with its outstanding Baroque altar created by Michael Pacher and, from St Wolfgang head up to the mountain lake of Schwarzensee before heading down the Burggrabenklamm Gorge ending on Attersee, Austria's biggest lake. Not to mention a trip to Salzburg itself.

You stay in unrivalled *** and **** luxury, family-run hotels that are calm and relaxing places to spend time, most with 'feel good' wellness centres, plus high levels of quality and attention to detail. In Bad Ischl, your hotel has a panoramic terrace overlooking the River Traun, the quaint family run Hotel Bergrose in Strobl and two wonderful lakeside properties.

Day-by-day itinerary

Walking information

These walks are mainly easy and follow well marked routes, however there are some forested sections where the terrain is inclined and loose under foot. Walking boots are recommended.

Day 1 - Arrive at Bad Ischl

Arrive at your 4-star hotel in Bad Ischl and relax before dinner in the wellness centre.

Day 2 - At Bad Ischl Hallstatt walk 11km

Today take a bus to the spectacular alpine village of Hallstatt, a UNESCO world heritage site and the oldest village in Austria. Take the panoramic funicular railway up the mountain and visit the historical salt mine. Use the ferry to cross the lake and follow a beautiful walk to Bad Goisern before returning to Bad Ischl by train

Day 3 At Bad Ischl

There is plenty to do today - explore pretty Bad Ischl itself, with its riverside location. Stroll along the esplanade and have coffee and cake in the world famous Zauner cafe, take in some of the imperial history (visit the Emperor's Villa and gardens) or relax in the EurothermenResort Thermal Baths. A trip to the nearby Dachstein Ice caves and spectacular 5 Finger Lookout is also an option.

Day 4 Bad Ischl to Strobl 17km/11mi/4hr or 19km/12mi/6hr

Walk (2km) or take the cable car from Bad Ischl to the summit of Katrin (1393m). There are fabulous 360° views of Traun and Hallstatt lakes, backed by the impressive Hollengebirge and Dachstein peaks. From here, your route takes you down the forested Katrin Pass. Tiny violet gentian flowers perfume your route as you pass Nussen Lake, a great picnic spot. Continue along the valley following the River Traun until you reach Strobl. Here you'll stay at the elegant 4-star Hotel Bergrose.

Day 5 At Stobl

There's lots to see and do in the village of Strobl, including a summer toboggan run and a wide range of water sports; you can also join one of the many hop on, hop off lake cruisers, visit the natural beach for sunbathing or take the bus (80 mins) to beautiful Salzburg, with its Renaissance gardens, Baroque palaces and the oldest open air theatre in Europe.

Day 6 Strobl to St Wolfgang 11.5km/7.2mi/3.5hrs

A lovely undulating walk through fields and forest with spectacular views across Lake Wolfgang. Stop at a restaurant for refreshments and take in the scenery or watch the variety of animals - deer, goats, rabbits, ducks and hens in the garden. Carefully cross the summer toboggan track and see the tobogganists zig zag down the hillside towards the Lake. Finish the walk with a relaxing ferry crossing to St Wolfgang.

Day 7 At St Wolfgang

Relax on Lake Wolfgang, a stunning expanse of vivid turquoise waters, popular with yacht owners, kite surfers and fellow walkers. Enjoy lunch in the pretty town, renowned for its beautiful C15 church and frescoed houses or take the cog railway to the top of Schafberg for panoramic views across the region.

If you prefer a walk, head to St Gilgen along The Pilgrim's Way to the Falkenstein Chapel, curiously built into the cliff face, then follow the stations of the cross back down to the shores of Lake Wolfgang at Furberg. Follow a wooded trail to the pretty hamlet of Winkl, then continue through archetypal Austrian meadow vistas. You'll follow another forest trail around the bottom of the Buchberg, before descending through trees - with glimpses of Lake Wolfgang - down into St Gilgen where you can take the boat back to St Wolfgang

Day 8 St Wolfgang to Weissenbach 18km/11.25mi/5hrs

Leaving Wolfgangsee behind, we climb up to pretty Schwarzensee, walk around the stunning shore line and perhaps stop for refreshments at one of the two restaurants, before continuing down the Moosbach valley. Here you have the option to descend to the stunning Burggrabenklamm gorge and then either take the ferry or continue walking along the shore or descend via the Lasseralm to the lake and on to the Hotel Post, where you spend your last night on the shores of beautiful Attersee.

Day 9 Leave Weissenbach

Where you stay

During your holiday you stay at the following hotels. If you'd like to extend your time at any of these or, if you'd like to enhance your stay with an upgraded room, just let us know at the time of booking. You can call our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 to discuss accommodation options.

Hotel Goldenes Schiff, Bad Ischl (4 Star)

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The 4* Hotel Goldenes Schiff boasts a prime location in Bad Ischl's pedestrianised town centre and sits on the banks of the Traun River. Inside, it's modern and comfortable, with first class facilities including a spa, with sauna and steam room.

Dining at the Hotel Goldenes Schiff is particularly memorable; in fine weather dinner is served on the panoramic terrace overlooking the River Traun.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Dates Classic Plus room Deluxe room
01/05/2017 - 31/10/2017 £8 £24

All prices shown above are valid from 21/02/2017. Prices are per person per night and based on 2 people sharing a double room. Classic plus rooms are larger. Deluxe rooms are larger still with a sitting area. They have either a south facing balcony or a panorama window facing the River Traun.

Please contact us for extra night prices.

Villa Seilern , Bad Ischl (4 Star)

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The Villa Seilern, with its state of the art spa facilities, is available as an upgrade to the Goldenes Schiff.

It is a perfect blend of the modern and the traditional, featuring a 19C villa along with a modern and stylish accommodation block.

The bedrooms are spacious and use a mixture of natural materials and all have a balcony.

The spa facilities at the hotel include an indoor pool, whirlpool, Bio and Finnish sauna and steam bath.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Room upgrades are not available at this hotel.

Please contact us for extra night prices.

Hotel Bergrose, Strobl (4 Star)

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This a beautiful 30 room hotel based a 5 minute bike ride from the eastern shore of Wolfgangsee on the outskirts of the village of Strobl.

It is a traditional building with wooden balconies and Gothic script on the exterior, and is located on a river bank next to a meadow. It has a lovely secluded garden, and three floors of perfect Austrian wood panelled luxury inside.

Rooms here are junior suites - all Headwater rooms have a balcony - with shower or bath. All the rooms are beautifully decorated with quality pine furniture and comfortable beds.

Please note that junior suite twins consist of a double bed and a sofa bed.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Room upgrades are not available at this hotel.

Please contact us for extra night prices.

Strandhotel Margaretha, St Wolfgang (4 Star)

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The Strandhotel Margaretha sits prettily on the shores of Wolfgangsee, on the fringes of the village of St Wolfgang and just a stone's throw from the Schafberg railway and the lake steamers' landing stage. It has been in the Volger family for over 100 years and there are old style photos of family members decorating the hotel's walls. The hotel simply oozes elegance, comfort and charm, with each bedroom even featuring its own individual sound system! The hotel also benefits from a sauna and solarium.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Room upgrades are not available at this hotel.

Please contact us for extra night prices.

Hotel Post , Weissenbach (3*)

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The Hotel Post sits on the shores of Attersee, offering panoramic views of Austria's biggest lake as well as a stunning mountain backdrop. The hotel has its own private beach - so you can swim in what is said to be the warmest waters in the Salzkammergut lake district!

The hotel is decorated in a traditional Austrian style and all rooms have lake views and balconies. The hotel also benefits from a lakeside sauna.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Room upgrades are not available at this hotel.

Please contact us for extra night prices.

Extending your stay

If you'd like to extend your trip with extra nights at the start or end, or if you'd like to arrange a stop off point en-route, then we recommend the following hotels.

Markus Sittikus, Salzburg (4 star)

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The 4 star Markus Sittikus is a beautifully presented hotel, based in an 18C building with a mustard façade located in a quiet side street not far from the Mirabell palace, just a 15 minute walk from the old city.

Inside the hotel the décor is attractive and individual, with bold colours like mustard yellow and red tartan in the comfortable bar area, and some colourful murals painted on the walls throughout the building. Public rooms have period furniture and the upbeat interior, combined with the personal attention you receive from the friendly staff, make a stay here particularly memorable.

The hotel has 39 rooms though it feels smaller, with television (CNN/BBC), direct dial phones and hairdryers. Each one is individually decorated with attractive colour combinations and solid wooden furniture, in keeping with the age and status of the building.

It is also one of the few hotels in Salzburg to have a garden to relax in, if you are looking for some respite after doing the sights.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Room upgrades are not available at this hotel.

Dates Double room Double superior room Single room
01/04/2017 - 21/07/2017 £66 £78 £82
22/07/2017 - 31/08/2017 £82 £96 £96
01/09/2017 - 30/09/2017 £66 £78 £82
01/10/2017 - 31/10/2017 £52 £62 £66

All prices shown above are valid from 02/12/2016. Prices are per person per night including breakfast.
Superior rooms are larger than standard rooms.

Hotel Austria, Vienna (3 star)

The location of the Hotel Austria could not be more central in Vienna. The Fleischmarkt is within walking distance of all the city centre attractions, and the opportunities for dining out are plentiful in the evenings.

The hotel is squirreled away up a small alleyway so looks quite unassuming. It is an enormous traditional building with a grand spiral central staircase. The public rooms on the ground floor are all very high with an atmosphere of faded and comfortable rather than modern grandeur. Ancient maps of the city hang behind reception and reds and crimsons form much of the décor, with antique furnishings dotting the lounge from where you can access the internet.

Bedrooms upstairs are off long corridors, and have high windows and dark wooden furnishings and velvet chairs. All come with satellite TV, minibars and tea and coffee making facilities.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Dates Comfort Room
09/05/2017 - 30/09/2017 £24

All prices shown above are valid from 09/01/2017. Upgrade supplement prices are per person per night, based on two people sharing. Comfort double rooms are larger than the standard double rooms, with chairs or a sofa provided.

Dates Double Room Single Room Comfort Double Room
09/05/2017 - 30/09/2017 £82 £110 £90

All prices shown above are valid from 09/01/2017. Extra night prices are per person per night including breakfast.


Transfers included from Salzburg airport at 13:35, and back to Salzburg airport at 11:45.

Please call our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 or email info@breakaway-adventures.com to arrange connecting flights.


Everyone who goes on a Headwater holiday will be emailed a link to our post-holiday questionnaire where they can give us an honest assessment of all aspects of their 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 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.

Ms Baldwin

A really great walking tour, good combination of easier and more challenging walks, beautiful mountain lakes, great comfortable hotels in amazing locations, great food at the hotels and at the restaurants along the trail. Was very easy to self guide during the walks with the notes provided, and not get lost. Local tour agents were helpful, gave a great briefing overview, and were on time and flexible to allow me to do a shorten the tour by a few days. A great way to relax and enjoy the Austrian country side.

Mr Mitchell

This was our first time in Austia and the walks in the lakes was an excellent way of seeing some of this beautiful country. The walks were not too taxing and the days off to do other things were delightful. The food and welcome were very good, but none of the hotels had air conditioning and the weather was very warm. Apart from the lack of air conditioning, or a fan, the rooms were very comfortable.

Mrs Nisbet

The location is beautiful. Walks are very good. The paths are hard underfoot mainly gravel which made it more difficult to maintain our footing and caused some leg muscle strain. All hotels were clean and comfortable enough, some with better facilities than others. The best hotel overall was the Strand Hotel Margaretha in St. Wolfgang. None of the hotels offered coffee and/or tea making facilities in the rooms. The pace of the holiday was, with a second day to explore the general area.

Overall a very enjoyable and relaxing holiday.

Mrs Snape

It was an excelent holiday but thought it rated a higher difficulty than one boot as it was challenging in places.

Ms Gorham

A Good weeks walking holiday, with four walk days in wonderful countryside. Weather can be varied (even in August) so some of the days - first and last day up and down mountains can be slippery and hard on the knees taking longer than the specified time. You need to take plenty of water and a packed lunch. The first two hotels with swimming pools provided some good facilities for wet days inbetween walking, however the last three hotels had limited facilities. St Gilgen in the rain does not ... read morehave much to offer. Colin and Jill were great reps and worked hard. We knew they were there if we wanted them. We arranged our own flights so as not to come via Frankfurt and this provided us with an extra two nights in Salzburg either end of the holiday.

Mrs Hoddinott

Lovely scenery and excellent walking. Accommodation was excellent . An altogether very memorable holiday

Mrs Lawrence

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.

Mrs Makin


Mrs Farebrother

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.

Dr Rayner

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.

Mrs Turrell

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.

Mrs Taylor

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.

Mr Taylor

Excellent holiday in an excellent location... 10 out of 10. Looking forward to returning.

Pro Beevers

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.

Ms Druce

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 ... read moreup 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.

Mr McPoland

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 w... read moreould 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.

Mr O'brien

Excellent holiday,warm welcome everywhere. Walks were lovely and we were very fortunate to have great weather!

Mr Brook

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.

Dr Livsey

All went smoothly.

Dr Garwood

We've been on quite a few Headwater holidays & we've never been disappointed

Mr Buckenham

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.

Mrs Lanczak

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 som... read moree 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.

Mrs Kearney

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.

Mrs Gardner

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.

Mr Loaring

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 the... read morey 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.

Mrs Cockerill

The holiday was described as easy however I would have to agree with a previous reviewer and say that some parts were moderate as opposed to easy, we had a bad start to the holiday and our flight was cancelled....we had to sort out our own flights plus connections not Headwater fault but still very annoying and when we landed at Salzburg my husbands case was missing and it arrived from Frankfurt at 10pm that night....we had to ring the rep and the number given to us was incorrect so we ended up ... read moreringing the 1st hotel which gave us his number....however on saying all of that it was still an enjoyable holiday despite the weather not been kind to us....it rained very heavily for most of the week

Mrs Whitehead

Wonderful scenery, locals friendly and a good selection of hotels

Mr Hunt

One of the best Headwater holidays that we have taken, enhanced by good weather conditions.

Mrs Merrett

Beautiful location, excellent walking and Hotel Bergrose was outstanding, both in friendliness, location and excellent cuisine.

Mr Davidson

An excellent energetic yet relaxing holiday staying at some very nice hotels.

Mr King

Perfectly designed holiday schedule to give variation, adventure, interest and enjoyment. Professionally looked after.

Mr Emerson

Interesting and quiet area with easy walking yet hill tops accessible by gondolas and the Schafberg cog railway.

Mr Conaghan

Wonderful walking country, excellent hotels, only grumble concerns the flight times ( getting too old for 3am starts )

Mr Cotton

Lovely part of Austria and some excellent hotels. Walking was at times more moderate than leisurely. Pity about the weather!

Mr Boyce

The weather was not very kind to us but in spite of that we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.It has made us think seriously about similar Headwater holidays that we might otherwise have dismissed!

Mrs Macpherson

A beautiful part of Austria with generally easy walking and lots to occupy the days off. Excellent hotels.

Dates and prices

The prices quoted below for each individual departure supercede those published in our current brochures. Air prices are subject to change and are shown for guide purposes only. Please see our Planning your holiday and What's included in the price? pages for additional information.

Alternatively, you can call our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 to discuss your requirements in more detail.

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Holiday details

Please contact us for child prices.

Holiday type
Self-guided walking Managed locally by Headwater appointed rep.

Every two days from 19th May 2017 to 20th Sep 2017, for 8 nights.

All continental breakfasts and 8 evening meals

Other details
Twin-bedded rooms in Austrian resorts are normally one large base with two mattresses/duvets. These are also known as 'Austrian Twins' and are regarded as two beds. Separate twin beds are rare and cannot be guaranteed as available.

Tailor-made travel

Tour only
Transfers included from Salzburg airport at 13:35, and back to Salzburg airport at 11:45.


Due to the tailor-made nature of our holidays, we need a little more information in order for us to check availability for Austrian Lakes Walk. Simply complete the form below and a member of our sales team will contact you (when it's most convenient for you) to provide availability information, travel options and an accurate price. Of course there's no obligation, but if you do wish to proceed with a booking they will be on-hand to assist you throughout the process.

Alternatively, you can call our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 to discuss your requirements in more detail.

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We can often obtain preferential rates with our travel partners.

We can call you when it's most convenient for you, or contact you by email if you'd prefer. During busy periods we cannot always guarantee a specific call time but we promise to try our very best.

Let us know any queries you might have about departure dates, similar holidays or other questions. If you’d like to travel by an alternative method, i.e. Ferry / Eurotunnel etc. please give details here so we can advise you on appropriate options.

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