A Collett’s Walking Holiday - How it all works
Delightful Accommodation Options
Arrive and depart in majestic locations on the days of your choice. Stay as long as you wish in half-board or self-catering accommodation.
Or self-guide - or do a mix of both
Free and optional, we organise 2 awe-inspiring walks daily. Choose an easier moderate walk or a harder high level trek. For self-guiding, you can borrow Route Cards for up to 40 stunning walks from easy to hard.
Via Ferrata & Cycling
Glacier Treks & WWI Walks
It’s easy to partake in special interest walks, bike rides, via ferrata and alpine activities. We can also advise you on local events and places of interest.
An abundance of knowledge & ideas
Plan your days each early evening over maps and a relaxed drink with us. Subscribe to walks or use our extensive knowledge for self-guiding and other days out. Enjoy your evenings with everything sorted.
Explore Europe's most majestic mountains - just as you wish
A unique formula from a genuine specialist
A Collett’s walking holiday is (1) choice and flexibility (2) unforgettable walks in majestic mountains (and more besides) and (3) the human touch.
Stunning Destinations, Delightful Accommodation – Arrive & Depart Any Day – Our 5 destinations rival each other in beauty, awe and character. Each has amazing backdrops and is close to the area’s best walks, whether you seek idyllic strolls through wildflower-strewn pastures or dramatic ventures on high rocky trails. In each resort, we have a delightful hotel, which is our local base. But you might prefer to self-cater in an attractive apartment nearby. In the Dolomites – our original destination – we also offer our ever-popular alpine chalet hotels. Stay as long as you wish. Most guests stay for 7 – 14 nights but some drop in for 4 or 5. Travel as you please – fly-driving, self-driving or using our airport transfers. These are daily in the Dolomites; twice a week in Austria and on request in the Pyrenees. In the Picos de Europa, having your own transport is essential.
Plan your days at Office Hour – Join Organised Walks or Self-guide – Our impressive Ideas & Information Files – Choose day to day whether to self-guide or join other guests on our free and optional organised walks – or do a mix of both. Each day – except Wednesdays – we offer a hard, high level walk (6-7hrs / Height gain: 600m-1200m) and also a moderate easier one (4-6hrs / Height Gain: 300m-600m). Both walks are off the beaten track, featuring breathtaking scenery, flora and fauna. You can plan your walks – or other days out – each early evening over maps and a sociable pre-dinner drink with our own hosts and walkers, who will describe the walks they are offering the following day. This is Office Hour, a popular Collett’s institution, which is optional and informal. For self-guiding, our Ideas & Information Files are widely available for you to browse. They document 30-40 local walks in each destination from easy to hard, giving you the duration, ascent, degree of difficulty and the relevant section of map. There is a Route Card for each itinerary, which you can borrow on a daily basis. Our files also feature alpine activity options, via ferrata, bike rides, scenic drives and places of interest. Simply choose the itinerary that takes your fancy. In short, at Office Hour we will help you create a succession of memorable days out and each evening you can relax with everything in place for the next day. Lazy days are fine too and it’s easy to unwind in these idyllic mountain retreats.
Flower Walks, Painting, Road Cycling, World War Walks, Glacier Treks & Via Ferrata – all our destinations boast exquisite and spectacular flora. Our flower walks are free, optional and available five days a week in the Dolomites (June & July) and in early season in the Picos de Europa and Pyrenees. In the Dolomites, five days a week we also offer free and optional painting strolls, World War I walks, cycling tours and easier rambles. At a supplement, you can join guided glacier treks and a Via Ferrata ascent to the summit of our highest mountain, the Marmolada (3343m).
The Human Touch – and attention to detail is ever-present at Collett’s from your initial enquiry onwards. In the mountains, our painstakingly-recruited hosts and walkers set us apart from the rest. They don’t wear uniforms or try to sell you excursions. Careful not to interfere, they will make you feel welcome and relaxed, passing on their knowledge enthusiastically so you have wonderful days to suit your level of fitness. Here in the UK, most of our team have lived and worked in our destinations – myself included. Our aim is to use our first-hand knowledge to make your booking experience a reassuring pleasure. The most common request from the guests who stay with us year after year is to keep it personal. Their wish is our command.
A holiday of memorable days on beautiful walks
Join stunning walks of your chosen grade or self guide… or do a mix of both. Your holiday will surely be enhanced by our own walks and walkers. We pride ourselves on the quality of our walks and over the years we have researched many magnificent walking routes, from idyllic itineraries at low and medium level to awe-inspiring high level treks. These waymarked tracks and trails comprise our weekly programme of organised walks, any of which you are welcome to join on a daily basis during your stay. Naturally, we include the local classics but many of our walks are off the beaten track, tried and tested gems, rich in flora, fauna and wonderful mountain landscapes.
Every day of the week (except Wednesdays) throughout the season, we offer two organised walks – one is harder and higher – the other is easier and more moderate – both are stunning, free of charge and entirely optional. In addition to these walks (and depending on destination) we offer organised flower walks, painting strolls, easy walks, World War walks and cycling tours, which are also free of charge – see below. In the Dolomites – at a supplement – there is a guided weekly glacier trek and a via ferrata summit ascent of our highest peak, the Marmolada at 3343m. Simply drop into Office Hour each early evening to see which walks are on offer the following day and sign up to the one that takes your fancy. Our walks take place in a relaxed atmosphere of like-minded people. Armed with a packed lunch, we set out at about 9am and, depending on the itinerary, return to the village in the mid or late afternoon, allowing you time to relax, maybe over a drink on your sun terrace or a stroll into the village.
Our daily programme of organised walks
The following walks are optional, free of charge, unfailingly beautiful and available 6 days a week (or as indicated below).
Our resort day off is Wednesday and there are no organised walks, nor is there Office Hour.
Scroll down to see a sample of a weekly programme of organised walks. It is from the Dolomites, our original destination, where we often offer three walks a day as opposed to two.
Walk 1 – Moderate Walk
Height Gain: 300m – 600m, 4-6 hours.
Upland flower pastures, woodland trails, riverside tracks, sleepy hamlets and easier high paths.
Walk 2 – Harder Higher Walk
Height Gain: 600m – 1200m, 5-7 hours.
Venture into the massifs on high trails amidst awe-inspiring landscapes.
Special Interest Walks & Cycling Tours
Optional, free of charge & daily except Wednesdays & Saturdays
Dolomites, Picos de Europa & Pyrenees only
Height Gain: 150m – 300m, 3-5 hours.
Join our wildflower enthusiasts in profuse and vivid pastures and on carefully selected routes, where rare species flourish.
Dolomites – June & July. Picos de Europa – 21 May to 9 June. Pyrenees – 4 to 23 June 2017.
Height Gain: 150m, 4-6 hours.
Wander to an idyllic location and enjoy the informal tuition of our artist whatever your standard.
World War Walks
Walk among the remnants of a fascinating WWI military arena, lying in a high level area of real beauty, featuring tunnels, protected paths and trenches. Mid-August to mid-September.
Local cycling tours on routes made famous by the Giro d’Italia.
Itineraries vary from easy to hard. Free of charge (except for bike hire), optional & daily – except Wednesdays & Saturdays.
Guided Walks – At a supplement
join a trek across the glacier of our highest mountain, the Marmolada (3343m). Every Wednesday. Pre-book at £75 per person – maximum group size of 6.
Via Ferrata – West Ridge of Marmolada
– trek to the western end of the Marmolada’s vast south wall before using one of the area’s most exposed Via Ferrata to access the summit. Pre-book at £95 per person – maximum group size of 4.
A Sample of our Organised Walks Programme
Below is an example of a weekly walks programme in the Dolomites. Something similar is produced on a weekly basis in each of our destinations, although remember we offer a few extra options in the Dolomites. The essential details of each featured walk can be browsed in our ‘Ideas & Information Files’ – or you can chat with our hosts at Office Hour about any walks which take your fancy. In the Dolomites, we have a separate timetable for Wildflower Walks in June and July and another for War Walks in August and September. For an overview of daily walking options, special interest walks and alpine activities click here.
At Your Own Risk
You join us on our organised itineraries at your own risk, responsible for your own safety and as part of an autonomous group, in which each member has a duty of care to each other. You will be asked to sign a disclaimer in this respect, which is expanded upon here.
Planning Your Days
Join organised walks or plan self-guided itineraries
Easy access to our extensive local knowledge every day.
In all our destinations, Office Hour takes place each early. Over maps and a relaxing pre-dinner drink, you can chat with our own walkers about the following day’s organised walks. Together you can decide which walk might suit you best and you sign up accordingly. Self-guiders can chat with our own walkers, whose local knowledge is extensive. They will be happy to propose appropriate and memorable walks for you. You can also browse our favourite walks – and many more gems – in our Ideas & Information Files, which are dotted around our properties – and widely available at Office Hour. They detail numerous stunning walks, which we put in categories, such as: Easy & Easy Moderate – Moderate & Moderate Hard – Hard & Very Hard. For each walk we give a ‘step by step’ route description, the duration, ascent, degree of difficulty and the relevant section of map. To facilitate preparation and navigation, we can lend you a Route Card for your chosen walk, whether it is a gentle stroll in the beauty and peace of an idyllic valley, or a hardcore hike up in the dramatic massifs. Our Ideas & Information Files also contain Via Ferrata itineraries (Dolomites & Austria only), bike rides, scenic drives and other days out.
“It’s Office Hour that really makes the holiday…“
Sarah & John Gilman, New Mills
Office Hour is a popular feature of a Collett’s holiday. Like‐minded guests, stimulated by great days out, relax over a drink. Flower lovers compare photographs and gather around digital cameras to identify species. Walkers mull over trails, from the idyllic to the awe-inspiring. Adventure seekers plan Via Ferrata excursions, whilst many guests just drop in for a drink to chat about their day. Either way, another memorable day in the mountains takes shape, leaving you to enjoy the evening with everything sorted.
Route Descriptions & Laminates
- Each route contains the following details: Grade; distance; ascent; descent; approx. walking time; Map #; Terrain; how to get there.
- They have a written outline of the walk, sometimes with numbers (in brackets) corresponding to specific points on the route itself.
- The route is also shown on a highlighted section of a specific map, which has not always been reproduced to the scale 1:25,000 due to size restrictions
- They use our ‘Layman’s grading system: Easy – Easy/Moderate – Moderate – Moderate/Hard – Hard. This is not easily compared to any other type of grading system, but a rule of thumb would be that a hard here would be no harder than a big day out in the Lake District, north Wales or Scotland.
- There is a CAUTION NOTES, HINTS & TIPS section for particular dangers and points of interest we feel need extra focus.
- There is also an ALTERNATIVES/ VARIATIONS section which suggest ways of lengthening or shortening each route where applicable.
These route descriptions are NOT meant to be used as ‘stand-alone’ guides, in fact, they are specifically designed to be used in conjunction with a 1:25,000 scale map.You should not attempt these routes or any mountain walk without a suitable map and the ability to read it.
In pictures – Collett's Mountain Holidays
A splendid week with the "Dream team" - Mick, Caroline and Cameron and a lovely bunch of fellow walkers adding lively conversation and much laughter, we could not have asked for more. Not forgetting Gustavo, the beautiful scenery, flora and fauna, perfect weather and fantastic cuisine!
A big thank you to all concerned, Rosie and Alis(Read more...)
Eastfield Lodge is a hidden gem, which should not be a secret. We were made welcome from the moment we arrived and were entertained through our stay. Penny is a leader and makes sure every one of her charges is comfortable with the walks at all times. Henry and his team kept us watered and fed each day at the highest quality and quant(Read more...)
This is the second winter holiday I have booked at the Chalet Haus Valentin and both have been very enjoyable. The staff are very well trained, personable and put the client first. I was nervous about taking up skiing again, after a long time, but so glad I did. Jane and Sonny were particularly supportive, but all of them were great. (Read more...)
The lack of snow meant we could do some walks in the north that I hadn't done before - Longiaru Valley, Maureberg Summit and Wengen Wanderweg and these really made the week. The Collett's staff were, as always, friendly, warm, helpful and really really nice young people, a delight to meet. The Wengen Wanderweg day will stay with me fo(Read more...)
All staff without exception excellent and able to converse with all clients and very helpful
May be useful if staying in Badia to have a bus to Corvara for the longer skiing trips (Hidden Valley/Marmolada etc) in order to reduce time to get to the main ski area, but staff were flexible on the bus pickup points when they could and c(Read more...)
I made a late enquiry which was handled quickly and courteously by your staff.
The cooking at Haus Valentin has become noticeably more adventurous - moving from 'good home cooking' towards competent restaurant standard.
I recognise that the accompanied skiing outings are inevitably determined by the particular group of guests in(Read more...)
We had another truly wonderful holiday with Collett's and won't hesitate to book again. All the staff at Chalet Angelo were extremely helpful and very caring. Sophie very kindly lent me her ski poles when mine disappeared from the drying room. Caroline, Charlie, Emma, Sophie, Mike, Dan and Brendan are all lovely people. Thank you very much.
The staff were super - really helpful, fun and knowledgeable, nothing was too much trouble and they worked really hard to make our stay a memorable one.
Considering the snow conditions were not ideal, I really enjoyed the week. The helpfulness and enthusiasm of the chalet staff and the conviviality of evening meals,etc was great. Skiing in the mornings was good but deteriorated in the afternoon and was tiring if we had to go a long way back to Badia.
As a result, I decided to have 4(Read more...)
From the information it appeared that there was complete flexibility to join in or self guide. As very independent travellers more used to being inour motorhome on the continent doing our own thing this appealed to us. The hosted chalet also appealed as it again was a far more relaxed environment and atmosphere rather than being in a (Read more...)
We had our second wonderful holiday with you. This year at the Panorama in Corvara and we could not fault a thing. All the Collett's staff that we met were so friendly, helpful and reliable. We will be back !
The staff at Haus Valentin in Alta Baddia were outstanding in every way. They literally made the holiday and I have never experienced this kind of service before. Highly recommend Jack, Jane, Sam, Adam, Jo, Alison(Sunny) they really are awesome. Thank you!
Really enjoyed the Collett's hospitality. The ski guiding was brilliant and allowed us to explore so much of the Dolomiti ski area. Thank you Arabba team.
I've always been happy with the service received from the team - it's good that a company are still willing to reserve rooms awaiting confirmation of numbers. This was my groups fourth visit to Chalet Angelo and were made very welcome as usual.
I'm not a "foodie" so it generally doesn't matter to me, but my group and even I found t(Read more...)
Absolutely great team at Chalet Angelo - very friendly, helpful and enthusiastic young people. They all did an outstanding job. Chef did superb dinners, every evening - I would recommend the chalet and Collett's services without a doubt! We have already booked again for next year!
We've just returned from Chalet Angelo in Corvara and are able to report another outstanding experience, characterised by the usual light touch dedication of the Collett's team and the sociability of our fellow guests, almost all of whom are serial returners. Thank you to everyone involved.
I have nothing but praise for the whole administration - emails are always responded to quickly and efficiently as are phone calls.
This was our sixth visit to Chalet Verena and as always we had a wonderful stay. You choose your staff very well and we have always met up with at least two from previous visits which shows how well yo(Read more...)
Our first holiday with Colletts and we were not disappointed. We felt really well looked after by the hard working staff. Nothing was too much trouble. Particularly noticeable was the sense that they really worked as a team and were enjoying themselves. We travelled with two friends but soon found ourselves mixing in with all the othe(Read more...)
This was our 3rd ski trip with Collett's in Corvara, Italy.
We had a great holiday which lived up to expectation. How Collett's manage to select their staff is a mystery to me, they are so good, friendly and go that last mile to give you wonderful service. I would not hesitate to recommend Collett's to my friends, and will certainly do so.
We have traveled with you in the past & so knew what to expect. The other hotel guests tended to be like mind individuals & so 'mixing in' is easy & effortless.
All of the team at Haus Valentin were great but Sam needs to be identified as outstanding & a credit to you.
Meals as usual in chalet Angelo were absolutely brilliant. I was really glad of the meal Brendan made on Sunday lunchtime before the ambulance picked me up because I didn't get home until 3.30am.
I wanted to try the winter experience with Collett's and liked the whole idea of skiing with people of similar ability. In a similar way (Read more...)
We felt really well looked after by the hard working staff. Nothing was too much trouble. Particularly noticeable was the sense that they really worked as a team and were enjoying themselves. We travelled with two friends but soon found ourselves mixing in with all the other guests. This was largely due to the first class ski hosting (Read more...)
Back office support prior to departure was as excellent as the last time we travelled with Collett's. Also, payment via the portal was simple.
Allowing self-caterers to join in Office Hour is a real plus point. Completely satisfied last time we stayed with you in Corvara.
Repeat booking previously excellent service - The staff were the best I have ever encountered in a ski chalet. It was also nice to meet Jenny from Colletts, holidaying in the same chalet, after I had made enquiries with her initially to book my holiday. My room was exactly as described and everything was excellent. Nothing was too muc(Read more...)
Despite the apparent lack of snow this year in the area, all the runs were open and all lifts operating. We were well looked after by all the staff and had 6 days of great skiing.
The staff at Haus Valentin were amazing last week. They looked after us all so well - nothing was too much trouble. Sam and Jack even fixed up my luggage which had been damaged en route !!
The quiz night was the best of fun - they put their heart and soul into it and got everyone involved.
A brilliant holiday and I hope to (Read more...)