walking tour company recommendation

Old Jul 20th, 2006, 09:13 AM
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walking tour company recommendation

So many out there, looking for a great
company that specializes in walking tours
throughout Europe.
Thanks!
sbianchi is offline  
Old Jul 20th, 2006, 09:24 AM
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You could have a look at Country Walkers. A group of them had lunch at the inn where I was staying in Sicily, and it seemed to be a friendly and convivial group.

http://www.countrywalkers.com/

Butterfield & Robinson are, I think, considered the "luxury" agency for walking tours.

http://www.butterfieldandrobinson.com/
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Old Jul 20th, 2006, 10:22 AM
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My husband actually used to work for a walking/hiking company, both as a walking guide, then in the office as the guy who managed all the other guides. His company merged with another large conglamorate, but he suggests you try this other company called Ramblers. Website address is www.ramblersholidays.co.uk and I believe they do all of Europe.

Best of luck - happy trails!

Anne Marie

AcrossThePondTours.com
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Old Jul 20th, 2006, 10:41 AM
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I'm doing my first walking trip to Europe in Sept. with The Wayfarers (www.thewayfarers.com). I've spent a lot of time searching for organizations that do these trips. In terms of price,itinerary,and age range of the participants, it seems that The Wayfarers, Country Walkers, Backroads and REI are all pretty similar. Those are the four that I focused on. I picked The Wayfarers simply because my available window of time was limited and they had a trip that appealed to me during that time. I think I would have been happy with any of the four companies though based on what I could glean from my research.

I have several friends who have done bike trips with Backroads, which is their main specialty, and raved about them.

If you want something more affordable and more downscale in terms of accomodations, I also came across an organization called Intrepid Travel (www.intrepidtravel.com), which has lots of trips.
Pam
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Old Jul 20th, 2006, 12:53 PM
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I have done walking trips with Backroads, Wayfarers, and multi-sports with hiking with rei.

I can highly recommend both Backroads and Wayfarers. Both have exceptional guides and wonderful hotels and food. They both pick fantastic areas to walk and add little extras that reflect the local culture. Their prices also reflect the quality of lodings and meals.

Backroads' clientele tend to be 30-60's. Wayfarers more like 40-70's. I am in my 30's and always the youngest one on Wayfarers but never felt left out or uncomfortable.

Both Backroads and Wayfareres offer a range of walk difficulty. They are fairly accurate in their descriptions/classifications.

I have only gone on 1 multi-sport/hiking trip with rei but I was very disappointed with the quality. Inexperienced guides, so-so to poor food, and a very scary hotel. It was that much cheaper than backroads or Wayfarers but not even comparable to the trips of the other 2 companies.

Others have recommended hfholidays.co.uk which offers both guided and unguided trips. No personal experience myself.
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Old Jul 20th, 2006, 01:27 PM
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Sorry,meant to say that rei was not that much cheaper than backroads and the wayfarers but was very poor value for the money.
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Old Jul 20th, 2006, 04:47 PM
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Sydney, how do you define "great" in a walking company? I did a walking holiday with Ramblers, mentioned by AnnaBanana above, in Sicily this past March. I would describe them as competent, reliable and good value for money. I'll walk with them again, but great, I think not.

As an aside to Annabanana, I think I know the company your husband used to work for and have been on a holiday guided by him. If his name is Simon, say hi from Ron -- Hereford 1997.
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