Discover challenging and dramatic walking trails shaped by the footsteps of traders, smugglers, saints and pirates. Cornish walking trails will reveal ancient tin mines, clifftop castles, timeless fishing villages and wild moors as you travel through a landscape of huge cliffs and hidden coves that goes back to the depths of time itself. In between the coastal drama, iconic harbours such as St Ives and Padstow give walkers access to some of the UK‘s best restaurants and coastal hotels. A county encircled by the wild Atlantic ocean, there is over 330 miles of spectacular world class coast path here taking you around the farthest corners of England - put simply it feels like walking on the edge of the world.
Stretching from coast to coast across the southwest of England, Devon is a richly diverse county with rugged shores and cliffs in the north, and classic Victorian seaside resorts in the south. In between you'll find tranquil green pastures, wooded gorges and the two dramatic wild moors in the National Parks of Dartmoor and Exmoor. Choose Devon for its walking variety, and you'll find that the popular image of cream teas and thatched cottages is true - but that Devon is so much more once you explore it on two feet. Coast to coast routes like the Two Moors Way will offer a journey through it all from the wild northern shores that inspired the Romantic poets to the maritime ports of the south coast.
Free your soul and clear your mind! Walking on the wild moors of these National Parks is a wonderful antidote to modern living. England's last true wilderness, Dartmoor offers 365 square miles of virtually uninhabited freedom with high moors and twisted dramatic granite tors a land of myths, ghosts and legends. Exmoor, its smaller and more gentle neighour, is 250 Square miles of near perfect and unique beauty, with high uplands swathed in heather and steep, wooded gorges and rushing streams. See Dartmoor ponies and Exmoor stags in these wildlife rich areas, home to 30 species of mammals and over 240 types of bird. The moors offer a unique opportunity for more challenging walking where the only human sound you will hear is the rhythm of your own breath.
Avoid the crowds and discover “Secret Somerset” missed by so many rushing headlong for the far South West. The 'land of the summer people' was named in a time when this area could only be visited in the summer months as the sea receded. Today its a rich, fertile and 'for real' landscape crowned by the fine walking ridges of the Mendip and Quantock Hills both protected areas of outstanding natural beauty. Rising up over King Arthur‘s Vale of Avalon along with the magical Tor at Glastonbury, walkers will find hidden gorges, wooded combes and the best inland panoramas of the South West. Also boasting its own Jurassic Coast Path, providing a gateway into the wilds of Exmoor National Park, Somerset offers walking routes without the crowds for those who want to find..... what the rest miss.
Dorset has a comfortable old world “English” feel to it and its walking routes traverse a rather more green and agricultural land of thatched cottages, cream teas.... and fossils ! Walkers here will find the more gentle rolling farmland, pretty villages and chalk ridges beloved by Thomas Hardy that sweep down to end abruptly at the World Heritage Jurassic Coast. Here, alongside the sea, those after more challenging routes can take a walking holiday through time itself amongst the dramatic chalk stacks, cliffs and arches of the Dorsetshire fossil coast. An area that can be very busy in high season but often suits walkers looking for more gentle and less exposed walking than the far west of the region.
Wales offers some of the best walking and outdoor activities to be had anywhere in the world. The 870-mile Welsh Coast Path was only fully opened in 2012 and is the world's first walk along the entire coast of a nation. The terrain is on an equally grand scale with towering cliffs, vast stretches of unspoilt golden sands, imposing castles, offshore islands and to the north there is the backdrop of Snowdonia National Park with its stunning mountains. Wales in general offers walkers great value for money compared to more popular areas like Cornwall with walking options to suit everyone, from those who want the cosmopolitan restaurants and facilities of towns like Tenby and St Davids, through to isolated and remote forests and coastal hills that sit on the very cusp of the Snowdonian Peaks. Bursting with confidence and pride in its “Welshness”, its Celtic history, language and culture there has never been a better time for walkers to enter Wales.
The South West Coast Path is the UK's longest National Trail and one of the top ten walking routes in the world. It snakes, dips and rises continuously on its way through a staggering 1014km (630 miles) of pristine coastline, 450 miles of which is through nationally protected areas. It's a challenge too; walking the entire South West Coast Path is the equivalent to scaling Mount Everest four times! From towering cliffs to hidden coves, ghostly tin mines to lush subtropical wooded creeks. One minute a dramatic rock theatre hewn out of the cliffs, the next a prehistoric fossilized forest or a 20thC Art Deco Island Hotel. What sets The South West Coast Path apart from other trails is that around almost every corner is yet another surprise as you retrace the footsteps and histories of the tin miners, fisherman, smugglers, wreckers and the customs men who chased them.
Oct 11th - We are now taking enquiries and bookings on all our routes for 2024 so please get in touch
A Summary of our General Data Protection Regulations
The full General Data Protection Regulations Data Privacy Notice
The following booking conditions, together with all information on your holiday contained in our quote are the basis of your contract with Encounter Walking Holidays. We have tried to make them clear and easy to understand so that you are able to see our respective rights and obligations for your booking.
To make a booking please contact us or submit a quote request so that we can confirm the availability of your trip and the total price. Once we have confirmed price and availability we will send you full details and prices in our quote. To make the booking please follow the instructions on the quote to confirm dates and options and make the deposit payment requested. All our holidays are subject to the availability of the accommodation. Bank holidays and weekends are often busy, so please submit your booking request as soon as you can to avoid disappointment. Click here if you need more information on the booking process.
All advertised prices for accommodation are based on two people sharing a room. If you are a single traveller, a single occupancy supplement may be applied by your accommodation, which we will pass onto you, however this will be highlighted for you on our quote. Once your booking is confirmed by us we guarantee there will be no price alterations or surcharges unless changes are made to your holiday with your agreement or at your request.
Your invoice will have full details on how to make a deposit payment. We ask for a deposit payment when booking with the balance to be paid 8 weeks before the start date of your holiday. We are happy to accept payment by cheque, bank transfer, Credit Card and UK issued Debit cards. There are no surcharges for the type of payment used.
A booking is confirmed between us once we have received your first payment. We will contact you when your balance payment is due with a balance invoice.
Once we have received your deposit we will dispatch books and maps ordered to the address you have supplied. After your final payment, we will send your full, detailed itinerary for the holiday including full day by day details on your walking, your accommodation, directions on how to get here, what to bring and other useful local information.
If you need us to make changes to your holiday after booking (such as asking us to add accommodation or evening meals) an admin charge of £25 will be applied. Please try to get everything arranged correctly when you book to avoid this. If you ask us to change accommodation options you will need to pay for any difference in price for your new choices. Please contact the office in the event of having to change your route / holiday dates and we can advise on what costs would be involved. Please also see the notes below about Travel Insurance which may well cover these costs if you have to change dates due to unforeseen circumstances.
If you need to cancel your booking we require you to confirm this in writing (or by email) to our offices as soon as possible. In the unfortunate event of you deciding to cancel your holiday after booking, we operate an industry standard cancellation policy which is that the following charges will apply from the date that we receive your cancellation.
If you decide to cancel your holiday for any reason the following charges will apply - see the section on Insurance Cover below, for details about protecting yourself from cancellation charges in the event of unforseen last minute cancellations or curtailments (ending your holiday early).
For your own protection, we require that all customers hold Holiday Insurance so that you are covered in case you need to cancel your holiday. In particular you need to make sure you have your own cover in case you decide to cancel your holiday or finish it early due to the ill health of you or anyone else connected to you. This insurance is vital to protect you against any losses you will incur if you have to cancel your holiday after booking it. Information on how to obtain basic travel insurance and what to cover is in our Frequently Asked Questions
You should also ensure that you are covered for loss of personal items or luggage and any illness or injury etc. Encounter Walking Holidays cannot be held responsible or liable in any way for customers who fail to take out adequate travel insurance. You and your party are responsible for ensuring that the travel insurance which you arrange is suitable for your individual needs. You are not covered for cancellation due to illness etc. if you do not have insurance in place.
If we cancel your holiday due to Covid issues in the area where you are walking, then we will refund all payments made in full.
If you cancel your holiday because of restrictions imposed either by the UK or your home country which prevent you from travelling to your holiday, then we will refund any monies paid minus an administration fee of £150.00 per person. You may wish to take out insurance to cover you against this.
If you cancel or curtail your holiday because you or one of your group has contracted Covid, then our normal cancellation policy applies. This is as follows:
We require you to take out travel insurance as a condition of booking with us. It is your responsibility to ensure that the policy will cover you for cancellation due to Covid infection and that the policy will also cover you if you have to isolate due to Covid infection during the course of your holiday. You should NOT continue your holiday if you know or you suspect you have Covid.
We also recommend that you keep informed about current UK Government regulations regarding Covid which you can find on the UK Government website: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus
For your peace of mind, none of our holidays require minimum numbers so that once we have accepted your booking your holiday will operate unless there are circumstances beyond our control.
In the unlikely event of us needing to cancel your holiday you will be able to choose to take an alternative holiday or receive a full refund.
It is unlikely that we will have to make any changes to your travel arrangements, but we do plan the arrangements many months in advance. Occasionally we may have to make changes to your holiday arrangements and we reserve the right to do so at any time. Examples of minor alterations would be the closure of a short section of path by the authorities or the closure of a particular accommodation requiring us to secure an alternative. Such changes will only ever be made to ensure your safety and or enjoyment. We will notify you of any minor alterations at the earliest possible date and ensure your booking is adjusted to provide you with the holiday itinerary you booked.
If due to circumstances beyond our control, we needed to make a major alteration to your trip, such as changing your complete route or the dates the trip will run, you will be able to choose to accept the changes, or take an alternative holiday or receive a full refund.
We regret we cannot pay any expenses, costs or losses incurred by you as a result of any change or cancellation. No compensation will be payable if we cancel as a result of your failure to comply with any requirement of these booking conditions entitling us to cancel, such as paying on time.
We regret we cannot accept any liability or pay any compensation where your holiday is prevented or affected by, or you otherwise suffer any damage or loss as a result of force majeure. Force majeure means any event which we, or any or our suppliers, could not, even with all due care, foresee or avoid. Such events include war or threat of war, riots, civil strife, terrorist activities, industrial disputes, fire, epidemics and viral pandemics including footpath closures due to foot and mouth. Natural or nuclear disasters, adverse weather conditions and all similar events outside our control. Your Travel Insurance policy will state what cover they would or would not provide in these situations.
Full details about luggage transfers are included with your walking holiday information but please be aware that for the health and safety of our staff the maximum weight allowed for any item of luggage is currently 20kg. We will advise you of the limit for your route in your quotation. Heavier items need to be split into 2 bags and we reserve the right to refuse to transport heavy items but will refund the costs to you. Any liability for loss or damage to luggage is limited to £200 per booking and only in the case of our negligence so we advise you do not put valuable items into luggage to be transferred or if you do, that you make sure your Travel Insurance policy covers them. Whilst every care and attention is taken to transport your luggage please note that on a walking holiday luggage will need to be transported by road and sometimes by hand into remote locations and we therefore advise against taking brand new or very expensive luggage items and suitcases.
- If you want to book additional transfers for example to and from the walking holiday we will provide you with details on local operators who you can book with directly. If you ask us to book them for you there is a 10% admin charge.
Encounter Walking Holidays are bound by and comply fully with the Package Holiday Travel Regulations 2018. For your financial security, the money from your deposit and final payments on holidays are protected in full by a Travel Agent Bond managed by ABTOT - The Association of Bonded Travel Organisers Trust.
The Association of Bonded Travel Organisers Trust Limited (ABTOT) provides financial protection under The Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018 for Encounter Walking Holidays Ltd., and in the event of their insolvency, protection is provided for:
ABTOT cover provides for a refund in the event you have not yet travelled or repatriation if transportation was included in your package. Please note that bookings made outside the UK are only protected by ABTOT when purchased directly with Encounter Walking Holidays Ltd.
In the unlikely event that you require assistance whilst abroad due to our financial failure, please call our 24/7 helpline on 01702 811397 and advise you are a customer of an ABTOT protected travel company.
You can access The Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018 here: https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2018/634/contents/made
Wherever possible we will supply you with your invoice, correspondence and information using email as this helps to keep the prices of our trips down for you and also helps minimise our impact on the environment. However, if you are unable to receive information this way, we will use the normal postal service to get information to you.
You must advise us about any medical conditions involving anyone in your group that may affect their ability to undertake a walking holiday. In addition you must act sensibly and prudently at all times with regard to the safety of your group and of others and their property.
Your safety and enjoyment is of prime importance to us and we provide information for those booking about safety issues to be aware of on the walking route
We may provide advice about the routes and on general walking issues from time to time as required by you and this also appears in the supplied route descriptions, maps and guidebooks. Information or advice is given in good faith and is accurate to the best of our knowledge. However remember that "advice" is just that and should be used for guidance only and should not be relied on alone for making personal decisions about walking.
Only you (the customer) with knowledge of the background details and abilities of your party and of any given situation whilst actually on holiday can decide if the advice or suggestions are relevant and safe for you and others in your party. In doing this you can take into account your own capabilities and specific factors such as the weather and conditions of the trails on any given date.
You retain liability for your own decisions and actions and for deciding on the merits or otherwise of acting on any advice from Encounter Walking in any given situation and in no event shall Encounter Walking Holidays be liable for any personal injury or any loss suffered as a result of, guidance, advice or information provided about walking routes.
Parents or legal guardians of children under 18 undertake to take full responsibility and supervision of their children at all times. To satisfy current legislation, children under 18 will not be allowed to undertake Encounter Walking Holidays trips without their parent or legal guardian accompanying them.
When you book your holiday with us, you accept responsibility for the proper conduct of all members of your party during your holiday. We reserve the right at any time to terminate the stay of any party member(s) whose behaviour is, in the reasonable opinion of the accommodation provider or us, causing or likely to cause danger, upset or distress to anyone else or damage to property. Full cancellation charges will then apply and no refund will be given.
We are under no obligation whatsoever to pay compensation or meet any costs or expenses (including but not limited to alternative accommodation) you may incur as a result of your stay being terminated. If you cause damage to the accommodation in which you are staying, you must fully reimburse the accommodation supplier concerned for the cost of the damage before the end of your stay and you must indemnify us for the full amount of any claim (including legal costs) made against us by the accommodation supplier or any third party as a result.
If you do have any problems concerning your trip or break you should contact us immediately on the telephone numbers provided with your booking information sheet as we will do our best to resolve the situation immediately. If we are unable to do this, complaints should be put in writing to our office as soon as is reasonably practical and in any case within 14 days of the end of the trip or short break.
All matters arising from your contract with us are governed by English Law and are subject to the jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales.
If you want further explanation of any of the detail in these terms and conditions please do not hesitate to contact us and we will help. They are not designed to confuse you but to make sure both we and you understand who is responsible for what in relation to your holiday booking !
Registered Company Address: The Elms, 12 Cott Rd, Lostwithiel, Cornwall PL22 0ET
Registered in England No: 8227323
VAT Registration No: 138 8656 68
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Company Registered in England No: 8227323
VAT Registration No: 138 8656 68