Has anyone used one of the companies that provide a self guided walk through the Cotswolds...walking between towns and staying in different inns? Thanks
We have booked three self-guided walking tours (Coast to Coats, West Highland and a 3-day Lake District walk) through Contours Walking Holidays: http://www.contours.co.uk/index.php Contours handled the lodging bookings, provided Ordinance Maps, Guidebooks/manuals, walk routing, and luggage service. We were very happy with the accomodations chosen given the remoteness of some of our overnight locations. In some cases, the luggage service also provided "bail out" rides to the next town if needed. That said, we did not do a Cotswald tour. While Contours does/did not handle transportation from London to our starting points, they were helpful with advice on how to get to our start. You can do it your self with bookings and luggage service in that Contours is a travel broker, but having their expertise and ability to book on-route lodging is worth the premium. On our coast to coast walk, we had one overnight situation where our instruction was to get to the red phone booth at the trails end, call a specific phone number and wait for the pre-paid taxi to pick us up for transportation to/from our Inn a few miles off of the walking route. Walking holidays are a great way to experience the UK and I hope to do more before our body parts fail. I would highly recommend booking through Contours Waking Holiday.
Not yet but will do next year. Contours has been recommended to us also Sherpa. There are several companies. For some more info see http://www.nationaltrail.co.uk/cotswold/text.asp
I've been looking closely at this company for a while. They have a variety of guided walking tours/activities, graded by difficulty - as well as many other types of short and longer offerings - and prices seem reasonable. They stay in some interesting properties along the way. Of course the walks could probably all be done independently, but sometimes it's fun and interesting to meet new people by joining a group and have the logistics taken care of for you. http://www.hfholidays.co.uk/
I've heard good reports about HFHolidays but as I understand their program, their accommodations are club owned properties and their walks appear to include repeat stays at the same property. You will have to add membership to your cost. Interestingly on a long distance walk, we would meet strangers walking the same route over the course of the trip especially when there is only one pub in the village.
Bob, a friend did a guided walking tour of the Cotswolds with Footpath Holidays and loved it. They also have self guided walks.