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Festive Cheltenham

Spectacular winter views across the Cotswolds over the festive period.

From£735

  • England

  • 4, 5 nights
  • Special Selection Hotels

  • Dec

Moderate

What does this mean?

Tour codes: 7070470705

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Our holiday walking grades

Moderate

Grade 4

Full and half day walks at a moderate pace over hilly terrain.

Most of these holidays have an element of sightseeing as well.

Half day walks will probably involve about 3 hours of walking, with full day walks having around 5 hours. Expect ascents and descents of up to 600m.

Overview

Holiday Highlights

  • Activity and fresh air over the festive period
  • Enjoy the remarkable Cotswolds views
  • The comfort and facilities of the Delta Hotels by Marriot

During these breaks, we’ll walk one of the finest stretches of the Cotswold Way to Leckhampton Hill before taking in the spectacular views from the Devil’s Chimney and the Cotswold Escarpment, with fantastic views across the River Severn to Wales. We will be able to discover another section of the Cotswold Way, walking about 7 miles north from the old market town of Painswick back to the hotel. We can also walk out to Cooper’s Hill, famous for its annual cheese rolling competition and ascend The Peak for another Cotswold panorama before descending through the village of Little Witcombe.

Cheltenham at Christmas - operates on 22 December 2020 for 5 nights & 22 December 2021 for 5 nights 

On Christmas Day, we’ll take a shorter walk and stroll past Witcombe Reservoir and the remains of a Roman Villa before we return to the hotel to enjoy the rest of the day in the company of our travelling companions.

The Christmas departure includes packed lunches on your guided walking days and a full festive lunch on Christmas Day, followed by a buffet in the evening. 

Cheltenham at New Year - operates on 29 December 2020 for 4 nights & 29 December 2021 for 4 nights 

Packed lunches are included on days where we offer a guided walk. A gala dinner dance with evening entertainment will be provided by the hotel on New Year's Eve to welcome in the New Year (dress to impress!). 

The pace throughout these holidays will be as relaxed as possible and due to the popularity of these, we may run two parallel groups, each with its own leader and independent arrangements.


We also offer Christmas / New Year breaks at other locations in the UK; 

Loxton & the Mendips at New Year (Grade 5) - 30 December 2020 for 3 nights

The Four Corners of Anglesey at Christmas (Grade 4) - 23 December 2020 for 4 nights

The Four Corners of Anglesey at New Year (Grade 4) - 30 December 2020 for 3 nights

Walking the Malvern Hills at Christmas (Grade 5) - 23 December 2020 for 4 nights

Hassness Country House (Lake District) at Christmas (Grades 4 & 5) - 22 December 2020 for 7 nights

Hassness Country House (Lake District) at New Year (Grades 4 & 5) - 29 December 2020 for 5 nights  

  • Accommodation is half board with breakfasts and dinners taken at the hotel
  • Picnic lunches are included on days including a guided walk
  • Either; a Christmas Day dinner will be at the hotel in the early afternoon with a buffet meal later in the evening
  • Or a Gala dinner dance with evening entertainment on New Year's Eve
  • Entrance fees (unless otherwise specified)
  • Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Discretionary tips
  • Optional excursions
  • Travel Insurance (you can add this when you book)

Holiday Information

Click the button below for a detailed Holiday Information Sheet containing all the particulars about this trip.

NOTE: Itineraries and Holiday Information Sheets can vary by a specific date chosen

View Holiday Information Sheet

Itinerary & Travel

Itinerary Details

Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised programme, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.

Your Itinerary

Day 1

Arrival day

Meals

Dinner

Accommodation

Independent arrival at Delta Hotels by Marriott Cheltenham Chase. Dinner is at approximately 7.30pm in the Cooper's Restaurant. Please aim to be in the hotel bar at 6.30pm - an hour before dinner - for an introduction to your tour leader, an outline of the planned programme for your holiday and the chance to meet your walking companions.

Day 2

Painswick Beacon to Brockworth Wood

Meals

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Accommodation

Our first full day walk starts in the attractive and typical Cotswold village of Painswick with its fine 15th century church. Leaving the village's elegant stone houses behind, we ascend across the common heading towards the iron age hill fort of Kimsbury Camp (Painswick Beacon). From its summit (our high point) there are great views to be had across the Vale of Severn. The walk continues along the Cotswold Way passing through Pope's and Brockworth Wood to Cooper's Hill before descending through fields to the hotel. 

  • Time

    4 hours

  • Distance

    6 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    260m

Day 3

Coberley, Devil's Chimney & Crickley Country Park

Meals

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    4.5 hours

  • Distance

    8 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    230m

(Christmas Eve) A short drive takes us to Seven Springs from where we follow the Cotswold Way taking in Leckhampton Hill and the Devil's Chimney with spectacular views over the Severn Vale. We continue via the Cotswold Escarpment and pass through Crickley Hill Country Park, returning to the hotel via the Gloucestershire Way. 

This is an undulating walk initially through farmland to an attractive village with Dick Whittington connections, before following the edge of the Cotswolds escapment along Leckhampton Hill to the unusual natural feature of the Devil's Chimney. There are great views on a clear day across the Vale of Severn towards the Malvern Hills and down onto the town of Cheltenham, before continuing on the Cotswold Way to wooded Crickley Hill. 

Day 4

Witcombe Reservoirs & Roman Villa

Meals

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Distance

    4.5 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    100m

(Christmas Day) A morning's walk from the hotel. Descending Witcombe Wood and across the Witcombe Reservoir causeway to the remains of a roman villa, we return via a different section of the Cotswold escarpment.

The hotel will provide a full festive Christmas lunch. After lunch, enjoy a relaxing afternoon in the company of your travelling companions. A festive buffet supper will be provided by the hotel in the evening.

Day 5

Cooper's Hill, Witcombe Wood & The Peak

Meals

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Distance

    7.5 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    300m

(Boxing Day) A full day walk on the Cotswold Way from the hotel, exploring the wooded heights of Cooper's Hill - famous for its annual cheese rolling contest, continuing along the escarpment to Witcombe Wood and the village of Birdlip. A short climb in the late morning brings us to ‘The Peak' from where the views extend across the Vale of Severn to the Malverns, over to Gloucester Cathedral and to the Forest of Dean. We then return to the hotel through farmland and through the sleepy village of Little Witcombe.

Day 6

Departure day

Meals

Breakfast

Independent departure after breakfast. Check out of the hotel is by 11am. We hope you have enjoyed your Christmas break and we wish you a happy New Year!

Departure dates for your selected tour

22nd Dec 2020 - 27th Dec 2020 (5 Nights)

22nd Dec 2021 - 27th Dec 2021 (5 Nights)

Travel Details

Transportation to and from the trailheads, if necessary, is included. 

Nearest railway stations: Cheltenham (5 miles), Gloucester (5.5 miles). Nearest bus stations: Cheltenham or Gloucester.

Your Itinerary

Day 1

Arrival day

Meals

Dinner

Accommodation

Independent arrival at Delta Hotels by Marriott Cheltenham Chase. Dinner is at approximately 7.30pm in the Cooper's Restaurant. Please aim to be in the hotel bar at 6.30pm - an hour before dinner - for an introduction to your tour leader, an outline of the planned programme for your holiday and the chance to meet your walking companions.

Day 2

Coberley, Devil's Chimney & Crickley Country Park

Meals

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    4.5 hours

  • Distance

    8 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    230m

A short drive takes us to Seven Springs from where we follow the Cotswold Way taking in Leckhampton Hill and the Devil's Chimney with spectacular views over the Severn Vale. We continue via the Cotswold Escarpment and pass through Crickley Hill Country Park, returning to the hotel via the Gloucestershire Way. 

This is an undulating walk initially through farmland to an attractive village with Dick Whittington connections, before following the edge of the Cotswolds escapment along Leckhampton Hill to the unusual natural feature of the Devil's Chimney. There are great views on a clear day across the Vale of Severn towards the Malvern Hills and down onto the town of Cheltenham, before continuing on the Cotswold Way to wooded Crickley Hill. 

Day 3

Painswick Beacon to Brockworth Wood

Meals

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Accommodation

(New Year's Eve) Today's walk starts in the attractive and typical Cotswold village of Painswick with its fine 15th century church. Leaving the village's elegant stone houses behind, we ascend across the common heading towards the iron age hill fort of Kimsbury Camp (Painswick Beacon). From its summit (our high point) there are great views to be had across the Vale of Severn. The walk continues along the Cotswold Way passing through Pope's and Brockworth Wood to Cooper's Hill before descending through fields to the hotel. 

  • Time

    4 hours

  • Distance

    6 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    260m

Day 4

Cooper's Hill, Witcombe Wood & The Peak

Meals

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Distance

    7.5 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    300m

(New Year's Day) A full day walk on the Cotswold Way from the hotel, exploring the wooded heights of Cooper's Hill - famous for its annual cheese rolling contest, continuing along the escarpment to Witcombe Wood and the village of Birdlip. A short climb in the late morning brings us to ‘The Peak' from where the views extend across the Vale of Severn to the Malverns, over to Gloucester Cathedral and to the Forest of Dean. We then return to the hotel through farmland and through the sleepy village of Little Witcombe.

Day 5

Departure day

Meals

Breakfast

Independent departure after breakfast. Check out of the hotel is by 11am. We hope you have enjoyed your New Year break and we look forward to welcoming you on another soon. 

Departure dates for your selected tour

29th Dec 2020 - 2nd Jan 2021 (4 Nights)

29th Dec 2021 - 2nd Jan 2022 (4 Nights)

Travel Details

Transportation to and from the trailheads, if necessary, is included. 

Nearest railway stations: Cheltenham (5 miles), Gloucester (5.5 miles). Nearest bus stations: Cheltenham or Gloucester.

Accommodation

Accommodation information

Below is the accommodation featured on this holiday across all departure dates. Please refer to the Itinerary for more detail about each night's accommodation for each departure date.

Delta Hotels by Marriott Cheltenham Chase

The  Delta Hotels by Marriott Cheltenham Chase is a comfortable, modern four-star hotel, with a superb health and fitness suite (including indoor pool) and is set in landscaped grounds on the edge of the Cotswold hills. Hardy’s restaurant and Hunter’s bar and lounge provide plenty of space to relax. The recently refurbishment and re-branded hotel provides a comfortable base to explore this magnificent corner of England. This modern and comfortable hotel is both well appointed and set amongst the gently rolling hills and hidden valleys of one of Britain's most attractive walking areas.

Rooms offer en suite bathrooms, free Wi-Fi, TVs, a safe, air conditioning, a mini fridge and tea and coffee making facilities.

Trip Information

All the details you need

Holiday Grade

This Grade 4 moderate holiday includes full and half day walks at a moderate pace over hilly terrain and is likely to include an element of sightseeing as well. Half day walking will probably include about 3 hours of walking, with full days having around 5 hours. Expect ascents and descents of up to about 600m. See the 'Proposed Itinerary' section for more information.

Walks & Excursions

The Cotswolds, Britain’s largest Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, cover 800 square miles of gently rolling and partly wooded hills dotted with attractive villages of honey-coloured local limestone.  The Cotswold escarpment, created when a block of the underlying rock fractured and tilted provides some spectacular walking trails including sections of the Cotswold Way which traverses 105 miles of Cotswold countryside from Chipping Campden in the north to Bath in the south.


Local Transport Costs

All local transport costs in conjunction with the advertised activity programme are included in the holiday cost. There may be occasions where additional visits or excursions are added to enrich your experience, these will be paid for locally by you if you choose to participate. Local transport can be a mix of private hire coaches, taxis, local buses and ferries depending on the itinerary.

Optional Excursions

A range of local excursions and activities may be available to book at your destination through a local operator. We have no involvement in such activities or excursions which are not run, supervised or controlled in any way by us. Your contract will be with the local activity supplier and we accept no responsibility for their actions or omissions.

Spending Money

Holiday Budgeting

When budgeting for your holiday, you will need to consider drinks, any meals not included in the holiday price, non-included entrance fees, optional excursions you may choose to participate in locally and any souvenirs or additional services such as laundry. A general guideline for lunches and drinks is £10-£20 per person per day.

Tipping

Although entirely at your own discretion, tipping is an important aspect of tourism and hospitality life and expectations are fairly high. In order to simplify tipping, we strongly recommend that you allow your leader to take care of making sure tips are given to hotel and restaurant staff and to local guides and drivers. This will be done using some funds provided by us together with, if you wish, a contribution from you, which he/she will collect during the holiday.

Tour Leaders & Local Guides

Tour Leaders

Your tour leader makes the world of difference to your holiday and ours are as passionate about discovering the world on foot as you are. They're resourceful, organised and widely travelled. They will handle all the local administration and other needs that might arise to ensure that you don't have to worry about planning your days and you can enjoy your holiday. Although leading group holidays, they won't forget that every group is made up of individuals. Each tour leader has their own individual style, talents and professional backgrounds and all are trained, qualified, experienced and dedicated to making your holiday as enjoyable, interesting and inspiring as possible.

Leader's Evening Briefing

Each evening, your tour leader will discuss with you the programme for the following day. This will be your opportunity to discuss the details and ensure the planned activities suit your walking ability. If you have concerns on clothing or equipment, this can be discussed then also. If you do not wish to join the organised group programme, please let the leader know.

Your Travel Details

To reach the hotel…

by car: from the M5. Leave the motorway at J11A and join the A417 (signposted Cirencester). After 1.7 miles, bear left and at the roundabout take the third exit onto the A46 Shurdington Road (signposted A46 Cheltenham, Stroud). The hotel is shortly on your left.

by train or coach: The nearest train/coach stations are at Cheltenham and Gloucester. To get between your station and the hotel, use a bus or taxi as described. At Gloucester, bus-service 10 terminates at Clarence Street, which is close to the train station. At Cheltenham, services 10 and 46 go via Montpellier Street, which is about a mile from the train station.

by bus: Brockworth is served by the number 10 bus which goes to Cheltenham and Gloucester, and by the number 46 bus which goes to Cheltenham. Both services stop near the entrance of the hotel. For details of the timetables, please visit www.stagecoachbus.co.uk 

Taxis from Cheltenham to the hotel cost about £15 (Central Taxis 01242 228877) and from Gloucester to the hotel about £15 (Central Taxis 01452 382020). We do however recommend that you obtain a quote before you book.

You may also wish to look at the following website for advice on the best way to travel to the hotel;

www.rome2rio.com 

Route planning to and from the hotel at Brockworth:

The AA and RAC both offer free and detailed on-line route planning facilities on their websites which may help you find our hotels. Details can be found at:

www.theaa.co.uk 

www.rac.co.uk 

Personal Details Check

To ensure that we can accurately administer your holiday arrangements, please confirm that the personal details we hold for you are up to date and that you have provided the information we need to secure your holiday travel and accommodation arrangements. Please check your passport details, date of birth and any other important details necessary for us to properly manage your holiday booking. You can view and update information already provided, and add details not yet asked for, by using the Manage My Booking facility on our website www.ramblersholidays.co.uk, or by calling our Sales and Reservations team on +44 (0)1707 331133. When you receive your booking confirmation please check the details as soon as possible.

Passports and Visas

Passport Information for United Kingdom

Any non UK or EU citizens may be subject to passport, identity card or visa requirements to enter the United Kingdom.

Footwear & Kit List

Footwear

Lightweight waterproof walking boots with a good moulded sole (such as Vibram or similar) and a deep tread and which provide ankle support are strongly recommended and may be essential for some walks. 

General Kit List

Outdoor activities are always safer and more enjoyable if you are prepared.

If you have not travelled with us before the following list might be of use:

  • Waterproof jacket (Goretex or similar) and trousers
  • Lightweight quick-drying trousers
  • Walking T-shirt/shirts
  • Walking socks
  • Fleece or jumper
  • Sun hat, sunglasses, lip salve and sun block
  • Warm hat and gloves (if appropriate)
  • Swimwear (if appropriate)
  • Day sack (this should be able to carry all you would need for the day's activity)
  • Day sack liner
  • Water bottle - at least 1 litre capacity (more than 1 bottle may be required)
  • Basic first aid kit
  • Lunchbox
  • Walking poles (should you find them useful)
  • Sit mat

This list is not exhaustive and every walker is different and may have their own preference.

Holiday Specific Kit

In addition, we recommend that you bring a flask with you on your walks each day. Due to the time of year, it is sensible to bring a hot drink out with you to help keep warm. 

Travel Documents Checklist

Documents and Information to take with you:

  • Holiday money
  • Credit or debit cards (and separate details of who to call if lost)
  • Car parking ticket and car park directions (if prebooked)
  • Coach or rail travel tickets (if prebooked)
  • Holiday booking confirmation document
  • Travel insurance details (if applicable)
  • Details of any medical condition or allergy your holiday leader should know about

Water To Go

An alternative to bottled water from single-use sealed water bottles is filtered water from a refillable bottle containing its own water filter such as a Water-to-go bottle available from www.watertogo.eu. Just fill up from any water source and save the environment from disposable plastic bottles.

We have negotiated an exclusive 15% discount with our partners Water-to-Go for you as a thank you for helping the environment. Please go to their website at www.watertogo.eu and enter the code RWH17 when ordering. In addition, Water-to-Go will match the discount with a donation to our charity, Heart & Sole, which will allow us to continue to make a difference in the countries you visit on our holidays.

Maps, Guidebooks & Other Information

Maps, Guidebooks & More

The walks are covered by the following map:

Ordnance Survey Explorer series 1:25,000
Map 179: Gloucester, Cheltenham & Stroud

The Map Shop

Maps and guidebooks relating to the areas you will be walking in may be bought before your holiday from The Map Shop at www.themapshop.co.uk

Weather

Visit the following websites for an idea of the climate in your destination:

Staying Healthy On Holiday

Health requirements can change at any time. It is your own responsibility to ensure that you inform yourself from a professionally qualified source on, and comply with, such requirements at least 6 to 8 weeks before departure. Advice on vaccinations is available from your GP.

Health Advice for United Kingdom

No compulsory immunisations are required for holidays in the UK although you should be up to date with the usual immunisations recommended for life in Britain. Tetanus immunisation is recommended.

Further Travel Advice

For further advice please visit:

You might wish to take a small bottle of antibacterial hand gel with you for times when you're unable to wash your hands.

Travel Insurance

Although not compulsory for British and EU citizens resident in the UK, we strongly recommend that you take out travel insurance to cover you in the event of eventualities such as unexpected cancellation, accident or illness before your holiday or the loss of personal possessions.

Visitors who are not British Citizens (or who are not EU citizens resident in the UK), must be adequately insured to join our holidays and will be unable to participate in our local walking and other activity programmes without being able to demonstrate that you have valid travel insurance.

Personal Safety

The UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office provides up to date information on security and local laws for travellers, together with current passport and visa information, at www.gov.uk/travelaware. Please take a few minutes to look at the current advice on your planned destination.

Please be aware of what's going on around you, take sensible precautions with your credit cards and passport and avoid displays of wealth such as wearing expensive jewellery or watches. Do not carry more cash on you than you will need for each day, and we recommend that a money belt is used.

Cultural Awareness

Responsible Travel

We're committed to ethical tourism in all our destinations. Our holidays are designed for you to discover the essence of the country you are visiting. Travelling in small groups not only gives you an up close and personal experience of your destination, but minimises your impact on the immediate environment. We feel that the most important starting point to protect the environment is to be out in it. For more details visit our website.

The Ramblers Holidays Charitable Trust

Unlike many tour operators we have our own trust through which RWH Travel’s profits are channelled back into a variety of outdoor, walking-related or environmental conservation projects in the UK. The focus of the Trust’s financial support is Britain’s leading walking charity, The Ramblers, and their role in promoting the benefits and importance of walking to the British public. In addition the Trust welcomes applications for small grants from local organisations in the UK who need support for walking-orientated activities. This includes the establishment of footpaths and bridleways, funding for rebuilding bridges and renovating huts, as well as bursary funding for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award for children who could not otherwise afford to do it. Please visit the ‘About Us’ section of our website and click on the Charitable Trust link for more details.

Heart and Sole

We appreciate that we are in a fortunate position to be able to use our profits to help make a difference to people's lives. Heart & Sole is a venture managed by our office staff, whose aim is to reach the heart of the communities in the countries we visit. Through Heart & Sole, we hope to make more of a long term, direct impact to these communities, particularly in less developed countries where even a small amount goes a long way. See our website for more information and details of some of the projects we support.

Staying In Touch

Mobile Phones

Please do provide us with a mobile phone contact number. We will only use this to contact you with important information relating to your holiday arrangements. 

Do keep your mobile phones switched on and readily available when travelling to the airport or if delayed in transit so that we can contact you with any last minute information relating to your travel arrangements.  

As a matter of courtesy, please switch off your mobile phone during walks, or endeavour to minimise its use. Please also try to minimise the use of mobile devices during group meals.

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