Archive for the ‘Walk of the Month’ Category

Walk of the Month: Castle Acre

Sunday, July 31st, 2016
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For July’s edition of Walk of the Month, we are heading to the rural village of Castle Acre in Norfolk. This tranquil village takes its name from the 12th-century walled Norman castle and is one of the best preserved examples of a Norman planned settlement in the UK. From its parish church to the charming village and Castle Acre Priory, there is plenty to see along this route.

The walk:

This is a great circular route and at 6.5 miles long, it should take just under two hours to complete. Ideal for families, the route covers an even terrain mainly made up of footpaths and tracks, with just a little road-walking along quiet lanes. Please take note that the path alongside Castle Acre Common can be wet at times. On the route you will find shops, pubs and eateries so we highly suggest stopping off for a bite to eat and a refreshing drink along the way.

The route:

Begin your route from the impressive Norman castle in Castle Acre, heading southwest towards the small village of South Acre. Once you reach the River Nar, cross to the other side using the footbridge adjacent to the ford and continue the route to South Acre.

Once you reach South Acre, make your way past the village church and South Acre Hall before following the tracks across the farmland above the Nar Valley. Once through the farmland you should be just east of West Arce.

From West Acre follow the route east along the Nar Valley Way and back towards Castle Acre. Cross the footbridge close to where the West Arce Mill used to stand, and continue through the peaceful woodlands before arriving at Castle Acre Commons which sits beside the River Nar.

After taking some time to explore the Castle Acre Commons, continue along the route passing to the north of the Cluniac priory entrance. You will soon arrive at Castle Acre Village and after skirting St James’ Church and the 13th-century stone Bailey Gate, you will soon find yourself back at the castle.

To view the full route map and PDF, please click here.

Book a holiday cottage in Norfolk:

Walk of the Month - Castle Acre

Sleepeezy (Ref. 15264) in Norfolk

Here at Sykes Cottages, we love Norfolk and think it’s the ideal location for a self-catering getaway at any time of year, but don’t just take our word for it. We asked over 1,000 visitors and residents of Norfolk why they love the area and compiled the answers into our fantastic Visitor’s Guide to Norfolk. In the guide you will find plenty of information on things to do, places to go and what to eat whilst in Norfolk along with a number of charming comments from the people that know Norfolk best.

Once you’ve finished reading through our guide why not check out our selection of over 200 Norfolk cottages? From the impressive Norfolk Broads to the dramatic coastline, our self-catering holiday lets offer something for everyone.

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By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.

Walk of the Month: Glenfinnan Viaduct Trail

Thursday, June 30th, 2016
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For June’s edition of Walk of the Month, we’ve decided to feature a family favourite perfect for older children looking to develop their navigation skills. The Glenfinnan Viaduct Trail is a relatively short walk through the Scottish Highlands with fantastic views of Loch Shiel, the Glenfinnan Viaduct and the Glenfinnan monument.

Walk of the Month: Glenginnan Viaduct

Image of Glenfinnan Viaduct by Peter WeemeeuwCC 2.0

The walk:

This route should take walkers no longer than 2 hours to complete, making it perfect for an afternoon outing. You can leave the car in the car park at the north side of the bridge or catch a bus or train to Glenfinnan before starting the walk. The trail can be boggy in patches so good waking shoes or boots are advised.

The route:

From the car park follow the tarred track, ignore the turn off on the right and continue straight passing a barn and heading towards the viaduct.

When you reach the foot of the viaduct, you’ll see a sign post for the Station Museum and Sleeping car, turn left here and keep right at the upcoming junction. You will soon pass under the arches of the viaduct before beginning your climb on the other side.

Walk of the Month: Glenfinnan Monument

Image of Glenfinnan Monument by Mike SearleCC 2.0

The route will continue to get higher as you move across the hillside.  When you see the parked railway carriages near Glenfinnan station, the path will turn to the left and continue downhill towards the railway and through a tunnel.

Once through the tunnel the path will fork, you want to take the path on the right and continue across a little bridge. Follow the path up the steps that lead to the station then turn left when you reach the station and follow the lane down to the main road.

When you reach the pavement of the A830 turn right and follow the road for a short period until you come across a sharp left just before the hotel, follow this path on the left down a track past some houses. When you reach the last house just continue along the path which starts between two mental handrails.

Follow this path downhill until you come to a tarmac road with a T-junction. Turn left at the junction and continue along the road which passes close by the Glenfinnan House Hotel. The path will eventually come out on the A830 again, opposite the start of the walk. From here you can either head back to the car park or take the time to explore the Glenfinnan monument.

To view the full route map, please click here.

Book a holiday cottage in the Scottish Highlands:

The Laggan Drey (Ref. 1525) in Laggan, Scotland

The Laggan Drey (Ref. 1525) in Laggan, Scotland

If you would like to explore the Scottish Highlands on a walking holiday then make sure to check out our extensive selection of holiday cottages in the Scottish Highlands. From charming eco-friendly cottages set in natural woodland to cosy log cabins we have a cottage to suit all tastes and budgets. For more information on walking holidays in Scotland visit our website or give our team a call on 01244 356695.

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By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.

Walk of the Month: Prawle to Lannacombe

Sunday, May 29th, 2016
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For May’s edition of Walk of the Month, we’re heading to the spectacular South Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. This route from Prawle to Lannacombe offers rugged coastline, beautiful sandy coves and sparkling sea views, as well as being rich in wildlife with an array of pretty wildflowers along the paths. Stop off at Lannacombe Beach along the way for a picnic by the sea. This delightful beach is Devon at its best- unspoilt and tranquil. Dogs are welcome all year round too!

The walk:

This circular coastal walk is 5 miles long and will take around 2-3 hours to complete although please allow more time if you plan on stopping off at Lannacombe Beach. It’s classed as a moderate walk with one steep ascent and one steep descent and it can be rocky and uneven in sections, so make sure that you’re wearing proper walking boots. If you’re driving to the area, there’s parking around East Prawle Village Green by donation and there are public toilets here too.

The route:

Begin at East Prawle Village Green and follow the road running past the Pig’s Nose Inn. Bear left then round the corner, take the first right. Follow this lane along the edge of the village until you reach a red phone box. Shortly after the phone box, there’ll be a turn off on your left marked ‘Public Bridleway’- take this path.

You’ll come to a T junction, where you’ll need to follow the blue waymarker arrow and turn left. Follow this track down to the stream and back up along the field edge. Take a right along the diverted public bridleway. After 250m, follow the blue waymarker arrow and bear left. After a further 100m where the path starts to bear right, you should carry straight on following the ‘Public Footpath and Bridleway’ sign. 50m after this, take the path signposted ‘Public Footpath’ on the right.

When you reach a gate, follow the yellow waymarker arrow marked ‘Public Footpath’. When the path emerges from the green lane, bear left through the scrub. At the footpath junction, follow the sign marked ‘Coast Path’ and turn left. Follow this along but before you reach the houses overlooking Lannacombe Bay, turn left following the yellow waymarker arrow marked ‘Public Footpath’. This footpath will take you up and around the cliff top to the car park and here you’ll have access to the beach.

When you’ve had your fill of this beautiful beach, retrace your steps back along the coast path and continue to follow it westwards. Pass the Edwardian Maelcombe House and the path will begin to skirt a field. When you come to the fingerpost follow the sign marked ‘Public Bridleway East Prawle 1/2m’ through the gate and up old green lane.

At the green lane junction, turn right up towards the houses then at the end of the road turn right and return back to the village green.

To view the full route map, please click here.

Book a holiday cottage in Devon:

If you’re planning a walking break in Devon, we have hundreds of lovely Devon holiday cottages for you to choose from. They’re the perfect base for walkers to relax after a long day exploring this wonderful part of the country; visit our website for more information.

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Louise O'Toole

By Louise O'Toole

Louise loves reading, shopping, baking and cosy country pubs with log fires. A nice cup of tea will never be turned down. She has spent many childhood summers on the beach in Cornwall and walking the hills of the Lake District.

Walk of the Month: Box Hill Stepping Stones

Sunday, April 24th, 2016
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It’s time for another instalment of Walk of the Month and for April’s edition, we’ve decided to feature a family friendly walk which makes the most of the warmer weather and extra hours of sunlight. The Box Hill Stepping Stones walk can be found in Tadworth and has the most wonderful views of the Surrey Hills.

This walk is great for active families who enjoy nature; the route is even dog friendly meaning you don’t have to leave the family pet behind. During this walk you and your family will be treated to amazing views of the Surrey countryside as well as glimpses of the area’s local wildlife. Be sure to keep an eye out for Adonis Blue butterflies and Bee Orchids hiding amongst the grass and if you’re quiet, you may even spot a kingfisher down by the River Mole!

The walk

This month’s route is two miles long and takes around an hour and half to complete, although please allow extra time if you plan on stopping off for a picnic. The route covers a moderate terrain but please be mindful that there is a steep descent with 275 steps and a long ascent to consider. Dogs are welcome on this route but must be kept on a lead due to grazing livestock. The visitor centre stocks drinks and snacks and is a great place to stop off before starting your walk. If you plan on arriving by car, then the car park has a small fee of £4, but it is free for National Trust members.

The route

Start your journey from the National Trust visitor centre, next to the car park. From here follow the surfaced pathway which runs parallel to the road (make sure to avoid the track going off to the right). You’ll soon see the fantastic view of the Surrey Hills opening out in front of you from Salomon’s Memorial. Stop here to admire the view or enjoy a tasty family picnic before continuing on the walk.

From Salomon’s Memorial, continue your walk down the sloped path under the viewpoint. Take a right and continue along this path until you see some steps cut into the ground on your left. Follow these steps down hill and through the Yew Woods, there are a total of 275 steps here so make sure to take care as they can sometimes be slippery.

Once you reach the bottom of the steps, continue along the path making sure to keep an eye out on your left for glimpses of the River Mole. When the path starts to flatten out you’ll come to a fork in the path, take the route to the left, the one with the sign for the Stepping Stones. You will now see the River Mole and the Stepping Stones in front of you.

From here you can either continue across the Stepping Stones before turning right and following the river, or take a right at the river’s edge and follow the path, crossing at the bridge a little further along. Once you’ve reached the bridge, continue through the gate which brings you out into a large open space called Burford Meadow.

Continue through Burford Meadow until you reach the road bridge. Just to the left of the bridge there is a path leading upwards, follow this path until you come out on the pavement next to the A24. Turn right here and cross the river. Continue along the pavement, passing a hotel on your right hand side.

Take the path on your right which comes up immediately after the Hotel. Follow this path until you reach a fork, take the left path and continue along the grassy track heading uphill. When you reach the ridge of the hill, join the wide grassy path and continue uphill as the path becomes a white chalk path.

You will soon see a pathway on your left, follow this path until it joins a stony path and the take a right continuing uphill. You’ll soon pass a building on your right; this is Box Hill Fort and one of the oldest buildings in the area. Take your time to explore the Fort before continuing up the stony track and turning right at the road to reach the visitor centre.

To view the route map please click here.

Rent a cottage in the Tadworth area with Sykes Cottages

Mannor house surrounded by greenery and flowers.

Hoath House (Ref. 22743) will accommodate up to 26 people and is located just 29 miles from Box Hill.

Here at Sykes Cottages we have a lovely selection of holiday lets available within a 30 mile radius of Tadworth, any of which would be perfect for day trips to Box Hill. Our cottages come in all shapes and sizes and there is even a property large enough to accommodate a party of 26! With plenty of extras including swimming pools, open fires, gardens and WiFi, we’re sure to have a property in this selection to suit your holiday requirements. To see our full range of cottages in the Tadworth area please click here, alternatively please feel free to give our team a call on 01244 356695 for more information.

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By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.

Walk of the Month: Llanberis Lake

Saturday, March 26th, 2016
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Can you believe we’re on our third Walk of the Month of 2016 already? In just a few days’ time it will be April and then summer will be here before you know it! To help make the most of the crisp spring weather whilst it lasts, we’ve pulled together a fantastic walk around the iconic Llanberis Lake in North Wales.

Clear blue lake reflecting the green mountains and clear blue sky above.

A fantastic image of Llyn Padarn taken by Hefin OwenCC 2.0

Llanberis Lake, known as Llyn Padarn, is approximately two miles long and 94 feet at its deepest point. Surrounded by some of the best scenery in Snowdonia, this picturesque walk offers plenty of opportunity for pictures, wildlife spotting and even a dip in the lake if you’re feeling adventurous!

The Walk

This walk follows a circular route around Llyn Padarn and will take between two and three hours to complete, depending on your level of fitness. The majority of the walk is over level ground, however the path can be loose underfoot in areas and there are some tricky stone steps along the way. It can be a little windy down by the lake so we suggest a warm jacket and sensible shoes for this walk.

The Route

Park in the car park (there is a small charge) then make your way north along the A4086. You will soon come to a fork in the road, at this point head right toward the track bed of an abandoned railway. Follow this track as far as the railway tunnel and take the steps to the right of the tunnel entrance to the upper level. From here, follow the path through a set of wooded gates and continue along the lakeside trail.

Silhouette of a lonely tree infront of a reflective lake with mountains and blue sky

Image of Llyn Padarn at sunset by Hefin OwenCC 2.0

Continue along the lakeside trail until you reach the head of the lake; at this point cross over the River Rhythallt making sure to admire the spectacular backdrop. Follow the road as it climbs towards the village of Fachwen, make your way through Fachwen keeping your eye out for a blue telephone kiosk. Take the path opposite the phone kiosk and descend the steps to the road below. The trail continues along the lane passing through wonderful woodlands before descending to a low point at a river crossing.

Cross the stream and follow the path until you come to a fork, take the left fork that ascends some rough stone steps. The path will take you back up through the woodland before exiting the trees at its highest point and offering amazing views.

From here it’s all downhill paths; continue along your path through the woods and into the old hospital grounds and gardens. Leave the hospital grounds via the wooden steps down to another lakeside car park. Here you will see the Welsh National Slate Museum, take the road that leaves the south eastern point of the museum area and cross the bridge towards the fields. Continue through the fields until you reach the A4086 and then your car park.

To view the route map and original walk please click here.

Rent a Cottage in Llanberis with Sykes Cottages

Modern kitchen/living space with over hanging light

The living space at Beudy Hywel (Ref. 6145) in Llanrug near Llanberis

If this walk has inspired you to visit North Wales this year then why not book a stay in one of our Llanberis holiday cottages? With nearly 30 holiday lets located within five miles of Llanberis, we’re sure to have something to suit your requirements. From large stylish properties sleeping 16 to small intimate cottages for two, these holiday homes are ideal for exploring Llanberis and the rest of the Snowdonia National Park.

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By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.