Headwater Holidays

  • Operating for over 20 years, Headwater Holidays specialise in walking, cycling, canoeing and relaxed activity holidays throughout Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean.

    They provide the opportunity to discover France, Italy, Spain, Greece, Turkey, Croatia and Morocco at a snail's pace, travelling in slow motion on foot or by bike. You have the chance to get to know the region and absorb the sights, scents, tastes and atmosphere, in a way that an ordinary holiday would not reveal to you.

    Some holidays are independent, other guided and you can move from hotel-to-hotel (bags moved for you) or stay at just one base for your entire stay. Each tour is graded according to the amount of walking/cycling required each day and the terrain travelled.

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    Styles of Travel

    Walking Holidays: choose from either ‘Independent’ or ‘Guided’ itineraries, some based on ‘single centre’, with daily walks, or ‘touring’ ie moving from place to place.

    • 1 boot = longest day 4 - 6 hrs, with easy ascents up to 300m. Fine for most occasional walkers.

    • 2 boots = longest day 5 - 6 hrs, ascents up to 700m. You should be used to walking all day, but you don't need to be specially fit.

    • 3 boots = longest day 6 - 8 hrs, including up to 1000m ascent. Some scrambling (but not rock climbing). You need to be fairly fit and used to walking. Not suitable for children under 12.

    Guided Walking Holidays: small groups, usually 6 - 10 people who walk together with a guide. Guided holidays are ideal for people travelling alone or couples wanting to travel with other like-minded people.

    Not suitable for children under 12 (sometimes under 16).

    Independent Walking Holidays: offer maximum flexibility as you travel at your own pace; setting off when ready and choosing your own lunch stops. Headwater provides comprehensive walking route notes. With most itineraries you move every second day to a new hotel. There are a few single centre itineraries where you spend the duration at one hotel and Headwater provides a wide selection of walking options. Children find these tours quite comfortable.

    Cycling Holidays: are all independent holidays, moving every second day with a rest day in between.

    • 1 bike = mainly flat, gentle cycling. Usually 2 - 4 hrs every second day. Suitable for first timers and families.

    • 2 bikes = varied cycling with occasional hills. Typically 3 - 5 hrs cycling every other day. No need to be a regular cyclist or especially fit.

    The one boot/one cycle grades are generally suitable for families with children.

    Independent Walking Holidays are suitable for children - check individual trip details.

     

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    How do they get around?

    Your luggage is moved between hotels by a support vehicle - you only carry a day pack.

    On Cycling holidays Headwater provides top quality bikes with features that include: straight handlebars, super-comfortable gel saddles, light, strong frame; Shimano 21-gear system; powerful V-brakes; big panniers each side for picnics etc; easy-to-use handlebar map holder.

    Headwater Crew

    All Headwater guides are locally based and are either Headwater employees or local partners. They are all passionate about their homeland and share as many local experiences with you as they can.

    On each holiday Headwater staff are always a phone call away - 24hr service.

    Where do they stay?

    Rural and small hotels, usually family run plus a wide variety from historic castles to farms, old manor houses, working farms to stylish villas.

    What about food?

    Breakfast and dinner are usually included - local and regional specialties, a gastronomic delight!

    Lunch is left to you - try a local café or visit a deli to pick up the makings of a picnic.

    What does the price include?

    A full briefing from Headwater staff including local information, route notes and maps before the start of each journey.

    Accommodation, meals as per itinerary and transport of bags between hotels.

    Cyclists have the use of a fully-equipped all-terrain touring bike, the best on the market.

    Experienced guides on the guided walks and tours, who will know the area intimately.

    Weekly route checking and attention to detail - all to ensure the holiday is as described in the brochure.

    Who is the Headwater traveller?

    Reasonably active people who want to experience a region up close, not out of a coach window.

    People who enjoy trying the language, the food, and soaking up the atmosphere.

    Families with children who want to experience the ‘real’ Europe - no play stations here!

    Headwater can accommodate children under 5 - check tour details.

    Headwater Walking & Cycling - France, Italy & Spain

    Europe's leading operator of guided and independent walking and cycling holidays. Explore the heart of the country, in your own way and at your own pace. Get to know the region intimately, absorb the sights, scenes and atmosphere in a way you never could on an ordinary holiday. If you're seeking the real Europe or a more active holiday, this is a must.

    Click here to view or order a copy of the latest Headwater brochure.

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