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
All staff were excellent however I would like to specifically mention the ones I had most interaction with Caroline, Charlie, George, Mike and Jane. They are all a credit to Collett's. Previous Customer and I really like the model you have as it works really well for someone traveling on their own.
We're just back from a week's skiing around Corvara and I would like to say a big thank you to the Collett's Team for making it our best ski holiday yet! The team at Chalet Angelo were super friendly and helpful, the rooms were lovely and well kept, the food was outstanding and the choice of ski or snow shoe days out were fantastic. (Read more...)
Just well done for a fabulous stay once more. It is really the staff who make such a difference. It is fabulous to see people who have been working for the company for a long time. It makes a real difference, their passion and enthusiasm does the company credit!
I've skied all over the world (for more than 50 years) and so many weeks a year I've lost count. The Ski Safari will forever remain in my memories - wonderful, fantastic week's skiing. Hope I can do it again.
The staff were really friendly and helpful. The hosted ski itineraries are a great way to meet new people. They give you the opportunity and confidence to explore new areas. It's a brilliant idea 😊
We contacted the office a number of times regarding ski lessons. Pete was a pleasure to deal with.
Seb, Amy, John, Tracy, Tom, Chris and all the other members of staff were unfailingly helpful and friendly. John dealt with our family dietary foibles without a qualm and his cooking and Tracy's cakes were delicious every day.
Dur (Read more...)
We were staying at the hotel next door to the Chalet Angelo where a large party of friends were staying, It could have felt awkward to have been the only ones from outside the chalet arriving for office hour but whenever we arrived, a member of staff would immediately come over to talk to us and make us feel welcome and included.