Walking Holidays

Europe’s majestic mountains ~ with a genuine specialist
Organised & Self-guided Walking

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Organised & Self-guided Walking with a Genuine Specialist

Whilst in the UK it is very difficult to spend a night in the mountains away from the hustle and bustle, in the Dolomites it is possible to escape for a night (or three) to enjoy a very unique experience in a mountain hut or rifugio.

If you prefer a bit more comfort than what is afforded by the hut on the Col di Lana (featured in the blog below), you can spend nights out in the mountains – we can easily organise self guided hut to hut itineraries in the Dolomites.

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Chalet Verena, Corvara
Skiing Holidays
Skiing above Arabba
Snowshoeing Holidays
Snowshoeing in Italy

Collett’s now offers self guided hut to hut holidays in the Dolomites from late June to mid-September. You choose the itinerary and dates that take your fancy, whilst we take care of all necessary arrangements, including the provision of maps, route notes and airport transfers to and from Venice or Treviso. We accommodate you in Badia or Corvara on the first and last nights of your holiday. Click here for more information on our hut to hut walking itineraries.

The Col di Lana

The Col Di Lana, standing at 2452m, is a mountain situated in the Livinallongo del Col Di Lana a few Km East of Arabba. During World War 1, it was the scene of heavy fighting which resulted in over 200 deaths, many due to avalanches alone. When the Austrians discovered that the Italians had silently executed a mine in the peak, they retaliated by creating a counter mine nearby before blowing it up. This resulted in a loss of almost 100m from the summit of Col Di Lana and was surrounded by the Austrians in 1916.

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Webcam from Rifugio Bioch, between Corvara & Arabba
View of Santa Croce and the Alta Badia above Badia from Rifugio Bioch
Webcam from Rifugio Nagler, above Badia
Webcam from Rifugio Moritizino, between Corvara & Badia
Webcam from Piz La Ila, between Corvara & Badia
Webcam of Corvara
Webcam from Piz La Ila, between Corvara & Badia
Badia Webcam from Haus Valentin
Webcam from Chalet Haus Valentin

A continued interest in the peaks history alongside stunning views and a challenging walk is what has kept Col Di Lana on the map for both locals and tourists alike. A chapel stands on the summit as a memorial to the soldiers who died during the war and communications trenches have been left for visitors to explore. On top of that, a small hut just metres from the summit has been built to encourage avid walkers to enjoy a sheltered lunch, or even to stay the night.

The room holding two bunks beds has been personalised by previous guests and includes a wardrobe of blankets, dried food stuffs and a pack of cards. The adjoining room is complimented by a large wooden table and bench, perfect for eating, socialising and playing games as the view of Marmolada can be enjoyed from the window. For added effect, note books have been left in hope for frequent messages from the huts valued customers; an interesting read dating as far back as 2009.

A popular route up to Col Di Lana follows path #21 which starts just north of Soraru. Expect to climb 700m across 3.5km and enjoy stunning views over Civetta, Pelmo and the surrounding Dolomite mountains as you reach gaps in the tree line. The steep climb becomes worthwhile as the summit comes in to view, followed by a breath-taking 360⁰ view of the surrounding mountains.

If a challenging but pleasant walk and an exciting night in the hut won’t suffice, might I suggest setting the alarm clock in time for sunrise. Enjoy blissful silence as the sun creeps up from behind the Fanes National Park, catching a glimpse of the orange glowing Limestone. The Marmots will soon awaken and can be heard from the valleys below; keep your eyes peeled for Chamois bouncing across the scree.

An evening on the Col Di Lana can be enjoyed either alone, with friends or family and is an easily accessible home from home. An evening in the hut is cost free but an unobtrusive donation box can be found near to the door. It is just one of the Dolomites treats that will have you begging the question – “Why didn’t I do this sooner?”

The First World War

In July, August and September Collett’s offers WWI Historical Walks for you to learn more about what happened in the Dolomites on the Austrian – Italian front during the First World War.

Collett’s Blogs

Collett’s blogs are written by our resort diarist, photographer, walker and skier, Kelly Diggle. If you are out on a walk, snowshoe itinerary or ski day with her you are sure to be included in her photographs in one of her weekly blogs. Kelly’s personal travel blog can be found here. You can keep up to date with Kelly on Twitter here.

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When thinking of a mountain holiday many of us may think that this activity is exclusive to professional climbers, sportsmen and adrenaline junkies alone. Here at Collett’s we aim to prove this notion wrong – with holidays in the mountains available for absolutely everyone. Seaside holidays are ten-a-penny, sightseeing getaways are typically too expensive, spa resort holidays can be boring and cruise ships allow no room for real adventure. So why not try something different? Try something unique, memorable and completely customisable to your own personal wishes.

Whilst holidaying with us in any of our fantastic destinations, you choose when you arrive, when you leave, where you wish to stay and what activities you’d like to take part in. In a nut shell – your holiday is tailored and designed totally by you. All of our organised walks are completely free and utilise our unrivalled knowledge of the Dolomites area; running every day apart from Wednesday. For self-guided walks, we are always happy to help with route planning, recommendations and advice.

Italian Dolomites

The Italian Dolomites is one of the most awe-inspiring valleys in the Alps and provides a picture-perfect environment for walking holidays. With such a wide range of different routes available to you, at various different grades, the Dolomites really are the envy of the rest of Europe. The area also includes two National Parks, a range of rare flowers and birds, old WWI sites and the magnificent Sella massif and Marmolada (3343m mountain). Collett’s exact location in the Dolomites is set in the neighbouring villages of Badia and Corvara within the Val Badia.

Moderate Walking in the Passo Gardena
Easy walking in the Val Badia

Accommodation: We have four fantastic chalet hotels available, all with en-suite bedrooms and excellent cuisine. You also have the choice between three mountain hotels, all of which come with spectacular views and incredible hospitality. Your options are full-board, half-board, self-catering and B&B – the choice is up to you. All accommodation provided is within easy walking distance from the village centres and the starting points of many of our walks.

Activities: Whilst holidaying with us in the Dolomites you have the option of participating in the following activities:

  • High level walks on rocky terrains
  • Moderate walks through stunning mountain scenery
  • Easy treks along woodland and riverside paths
  • Floral walks with a flower specialist throughout June & July
  • Painting strolls take you somewhere majestic armed with watercolours
  • Self-guided walks allow you to roam independently with the use of our expert knowledge

Extras: The Dolomites has a wealth of amazing extra activities for you to take part in, including tours of the famous Via Ferrata and World War walks that take place every Wednesday. There are also guided glacier tours and summit ascents available on the same day. We can help you hire a mountain bike for your adventures and can also put you in contact with local suppliers of alpine pursuits; including climbing walls, canyoning, white-water rafting, horse riding, tandem paragliding, golf and much more.

Picos de Europa

Located within the autonomous communities of Asturias, Cantabria, Castile & León (20km from the north coast of Spain) the spectacular mountain range forms part of the Cordillera Cantabrica. The majority of rocks in the Picos are made up of limestone and some peaks can reach altitudes up to 2,600m. The area itself, famous for its cider and piquant blue cheese, is largely protected by the Picos de Europa National Park and as such can offer some absolutely remarkable views.

Accommodation: Our main hosted accommodation is the beautiful Posada El Corcal, located 2km away from the town of Potes. With en-suite bathrooms, modern interior design and rustic tradition – this is the idyllic setting to lay your head after a day’s walk. These rooms are available as full board, half board or B&B. Alternatively; you can stay in Tama near Potes or arrange your own self-catering apartments.

Activities: Whilst holidaying with us in Picos de Europa you can participate in the following activities:

  • Hard level walks along magnificent high trails
  • Moderate rambles through meadows and the beautiful Picos massifs
  • Easy walks following woodland tracks and riverside trails
  • Floral walks throughout May and June
  • Self-guided walks of all grades with local knowledge provided

Extras: Supplements in Picos de Europa include mountain biking, horse riding, canoeing, paragliding and canyoning. Also, if you’re visiting this remarkable area you won’t want to miss the Cares Gorge or the Fuente De, where you can take cable car rides to enjoy the breath-taking scenery and atmosphere.

Organised walks with Collett’s

High level walking in the Picos

Self guided walks with Collett’s


This natural border between Spain and France spreads across approximately 491km of land and encompasses numerous National Parks along with the beautiful Valle de Tena. These magnificent assets make the Pyrenees a photographer’s heaven with beautiful wildflowers and charming scenery to revel in. Collett’s is based in Panticosa – an idyllic village placed amongst the beautiful scenery high up in the mountains.

Accommodation: The Hotel Sabocos is a wonderful 3 star hotel located in the Valle de Tena, right in the centre of the Pyrenees. With modern interior design, en-suite bathrooms and many balconies available to enjoy the view; rest assured your stay will be a comfortable and relaxing one. This hotel is available on half board or B&B basis. You also have the option of self-catering in apartments that sleep 2-6 people.

Activities: When staying with us in the Pyrenees why not take part in the following activities:

  • High level walks along the peaks of the frontier ridge and Ordesa canyon
  • Moderate strolls through wonderful wilderness areas
  • Self-guided walks of moderate and harder levels with expert advice and direction
  • Walk 5 stages of the famous GR11 footpath, involving 700-1000m ascent and 11-20km of walking

Extras: Third party suppliers also have a range of extra activities to offer, including mountain biking, horse riding, canyoning, high ropes, swimming, tennis and much more. The Mediterranean and Costa Verde are also within easy reach for something a little different.

Organised walks with Collett’s

Hike the Valle de Tena, Pyrenees

On the Pic du Midi circuit

Yorkshire Dales

You do not necessarily need to leave the country to enjoy some of the greatest views nature has to offer; here in the UK we display some of the most spectacular scenery available to man. Our base in Yorkshire is perfect for those wanting a quick and easy trip, or maybe a quiet weekend away with family and friends. Leyburn, close to Dales National Park, is where we are based; but there are many options of different walks available to you in this magnificent setting.

Accommodation: Eastfield Lodge in Leyburn is a beautiful guest house just 300 yards away from the village market square. This lodge consists of 8 en-suite bedrooms which are furnished to great taste and individuality. Each room comes with Wi-Fi, flat screen television, DVD players and unmatchable comfort. Awarded four stars by Visit England, you won’t be disappointed with your time spent here!

Activities: Yorkshire has a wealth of activities to offer, some of which include:

  • Pennhill circuit covering 11 miles, taking you through Coverdale, Bishopdale and Wensleydale
  • Fremington Edge encompasses 500m of ascent across 10 miles, providing an immaculate view of Arkengarthdale
  • Gunnerside Gill and Swinner Gill stretch across 11 miles and takes in amazing woodland and limestone scars.

Extras: There are countless other things to enjoy around the Yorkshire Dales, such as visiting nearby Middleham, Richmond, Kettleworth and Reeth. You can also see the Dales National Park Visitor Centre, the Wensleydale Railway, Aysgarth Falls and the beautiful Bolton Abbey. Wherever you choose to visit, you will not be too far away from the lodge and transport is readily accessible at most times of the day.

Another bedroom at Eastfield Lodge
One of our bedrooms in Eastfield Lodge, Leyburn
Walking in Wensleydale

Winter in the Italian Dolomites

As well as offering fantastic summertime walks in the Italian Dolomites, we also cater for winter holidays in the same stunning surroundings. When the snow falls on these mountains the landscape turns into a magical winter wonderland, perfect for winter walkers and skiers alike. Here at Collett’s we organise walks, cater for downhill skiing and also offer snowshoeing as an alternative activity. Don’t let the cold put you off – come and experience something different this winter!

Skiing the Val Mesdi
high in the Dolomites

Snowshoeing on the Pralongià Plateau above Corvara

Santa Croce above Badia

Due to a recent high level of interest from our guests, organisers from Chalet Haus Valentin made sure that a walk through the WW1 tunnels was on offer this week.

Upon arrival to the car park, the 30 minute zig-zag route alongside Lagazuoi, which leads to the entrance of the tunnels, could be seen. We made our way up the gravel track as views opened up over the Marmolada and surrounding mountain peaks. Getting geared up for the adventure ahead sent excitement through the group as everybody checked that torches were working and helmets were on sturdy. Ready and raring to go, organiser Alice lead the guests into the tunnels where the cooling air made for a nice break from the 20⁰+ temperatures outside.

Start of the Lagazuoi tunnels

Evacuation points offer fantastic views of surrounding mountains and provide sufficient natural light inside the tunnel system.

Almost instantly the conditions of WW1 came to life as we carefully walked through what was once home to many soldiers. Sections of Via Ferrata cable are still being used to guide your way around open ledges leading to look-out posts and ammunition stations. After a quick look, we headed back inside to begin climbing the many steps that reach some 600m to the top of Lagazuoi.

During our ascent, guests enjoyed sticking their heads out of the ‘evacuation’ points (for disposal of rubble and rock during construction) which could be found every 50m or so. Information plaques have been placed periodically at points of interest, many of which have been quoted from soldiers’ diaries; this was made more dramatic as our guests took it in turns to read them aloud to the group.

The last ten minute stretch took us through original trenches, accentuated by the presence of barbed wire.

A much appreciated break from the many steps to the top

A sense of dissapointment radiated through everybody as we made our way out of the tunnel. A dramatic back drop of peaks against Rifugio Lagazuoi created a perfect spot for a snack as comments were passed back and forth about how fantastic it is to enjoy such an important part of history for free.

Investigating the tunnels on Lagazuoi
The Lagazuoi Cable Car at Passo Falzarego

Plenty of people gathered at the Rifugio as our guests found a nice, quiet spot overlooking the beautiful landscape to enjoy their lunch. With some more time to spare we meandered over to the cross which sits at the official highest point of the mountain and is a fantastic spot to take some time to absorb the surroundings. With only one thing left to do, we all hopped on to what has to be one of the steepest cable cars in the Dolomite Mountain range, practically dropping us to the door of the car – a wonderful end to such a pleasant day walking and exploring with our wonderful guests.

Rifugio Lagazuoi on the Falzarego Pass
Cinque Torre open air museum opposite Passo Falzarego & Lagazuoi

Collett’s blogs are written by our resort diarist, photographer and walker, Kelly Diggle. If you are out on a walk with her you are sure to be included in her photographs in one of her weekly blogs. Kelly’s personal travel blog can be found here.

Organised & Self Guided Walking
Arrive & Depart Any day

Our winter staff have all returned home safely, after an amazing season of heavy snow, great skiing, super snowshoeing and some wonderful winter walks. We are already booking up fast for next winter so make sure you have a look at our new Chalet in Corvara and what we have to offer next winter here.

Our summer season is nearly with us and as we look forward to the spring in the UK, we look await the first crocuses poking through the remaining snow in the Dolomites, Pyrenees and Picos de Europa.

Organised and Self Guided walking holidays with Collett’s offer so much by means of enjoyment and camaraderie, relaxation and downtime from the stresses and strains of your day to day life. With Collett’s you can do as much or as little as you like, arriving and departing on days that suit you!* Each evening we hold ‘Office Hour’ where you can discuss the following day’s walks, sign up to come along with us or get first hand information, maps and route laminates to allow you to self guide.

Collett’s walking holidays appeal to so many, walkers, climbers, botanists, painters and historians alike (friends, families or couples), who all have one thing in common, the love of the outdoors. You can pursue your hobby in the glorious mountain surroundings that we have made our home, coming back to one of our homely chalets or hotels for ‘Office Hour’ and a good meal with the chance to discuss the day’s events, sharing photographs of your walk, flowers or maybe even a via ferrata.

Collett’s Mountain Holidays have been successfully looking after our guests for 14 years. All of our holidays can be tailiored to suit you – from the type of accommodation, your travel and transport, your dietary requirements and most importantly your walking requirements. Whatever you need, we can accommodate any specific personal preferences to make sure your holiday is one to remember, even a holiday of a lifetime! We pride ourselves on our customer satisfaction, you can see our excellent reviews and thank you letter from the recent winter season here. You will take away so many happy memories if you choose Collett’s walking holidays whether you join us in the Dolomites, Pyrenees and Picos de Europa.

*Subject to availability.