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Beoordelingen van onze reizigers

Reisbegeleiding 9,0
Vervoer 7,9
Overnachtingen 8,2
Reisroute 8,4
9.4 34 beoordelingen
  • 10

    WALKING THE SPANISH HEARTLAND

    Very relaxing trip in a wonderfully unspoilt region. Covarrubias is a beautiful Medieval village, full of character and charm.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Highlights of the trip include; the vultures, the visit to Saint Domingo de Silos, the stunning views, the village of Covarrubias and the relaxed informality of the hotel.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader was very effecient but also relaxed and friendly. 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 10

    the Secret Trails of Medieval Spain

    The best Exodus walking trip I have done. We were a small group with a very knowledgeable and enthusiastic leader. By the end of the week (if not before) it felt like we belonged in Corruvabias and had known each other for a long time. This trip is a chance to explore a not very visited part of Spain, with a ton of local history, scenic surprises around almost every corner and an opportunity to mingle with Spanish local people. There is also the modern day history of 'The Camino' present locally and in particular in Burgos, where 'pilgrims' gather in cafes and in the wonderful Cathedral.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Each day was unique, with lovely wildflowers and birds (notably vultures, perched on the very edges of cliffs and storks nesting on high points of buildings) Dinner (with wine included). Eloy, proprietor of the hotel, cooked all our food and made sure that each day we sampled different Spanish dishes - his cooking is outstanding. With good food and wine the efforts of the day were celebrated and the highlights re-visited. The hotel rooms all have their unique character and a medieval feel. Eloy closed his bar to the locals in the evening in order to concentrate on looking after us.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Chris is knowledgeable, enthusiastic and part of the group, whilst still being able to lead it. He obviously loves the area and the people who are ready with their welcome when they see him.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Yes. The walks, although not really difficult, (a couple of steep places but they are short) are long and we walked four days in a row as the bus to Burgos did not run on a Wednesday. We walked 5/6 hours on each walking day, with breaks for coffee and lunch etc. I found that walking poles helped a lot and the knowledge that I could walk at least 10 miles a day.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I'm looking for another trip in Spain - it was that good

  • 10

    Great Holiday

    Excellent hotel, in a great local area, with very friendly staff, good food and wine, good local walks, and a superb group to be with.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    One particular steep climb, it must be done !!!!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our leader, Chris Burke, was outstanding in all departments, he was excellent, a pleasure to share the holiday with .

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Just do it !! It's great.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    No I think the above says it all !!

  • 8

    WALKING THE SPANISH HEARTLAND

    We had a wonderful week, thoroughly enjoyed the walks and visits to the various villages etc. The hotel was very comfortable and the owner could not do enough for you

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The views were magnificent, it is lovely getting to see the un-spoiled countryside. The hotel accommodation is very comfortable but as has been said before there is no sound proofing so if you are a light sleeper you may need earplugs, although having said that the hotel owner is extremely considerate and will turn down the sound on the TV, etc if you have gone to bed before others.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bob is an excellent guide, he knew the area, fauna and flora very well and had an excellent relationship with the locals.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Even though we were there the last week of May the weather was chilly and did rain, but we also managed to get sunburnt noses on one day so remember to be prepared for every type of weather and eventuality!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 10

    WALKING THE SPANISH HEARTLAND

    Most likely I was the youngest traveler ever on that journey, but despite my age of 22 I truly enjoyed the holiday! The whole trip is so much more than "only" a walking holiday. Things like the visit to the monastery where we went to see some Gregorian chants and to the winery for a tasting of locally produced wines added a lot to the whole walking experience. Furthermore I enjoyed the scenic landscape! Thinking back now, the views we had throughout most of the week (and especially during lunch) were absolutely stunning! Walking along gorges, passing small villages, ascending moderate hills- very varied walking all in all. It is also a must to mention the hotel: (way too much) delicious food and very warm hearted owners made it a very pleasent stay! Last but not least, there is one more highlight: the vultures! I have never seen them before in their natural environment. I shall never forget observing those majestic birds!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    It is difficult to pin that trip down on only one inspirational moment. But I think I would choose the silent and peaceful ones that we encountered day and day again whilst walking. During the whole trip we met less than a handful of people!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bob did an excellent job! Has a lot of local knowledge- but also about history and Spain in general! There is always some interesting information that he tells you and that makes you look differently at things. Everything was very well planned.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Book it!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I have nothing more to add, except that it exceeded my expectations!

  • 8

    WALKING THE SPANISH HEARTLAND

    It was a very relaxing holiday as the walks were quite leisurely. No huffing and puffing involved. We had plenty of opportunity to chat to each other. The hotel is very cosy and welcoming, the soundproofing, however, almost non-existent. Since we were the only ones staying there, it wasn't a problem as everybody got up and went to bed at more or less the same time. Earplugs still advisable, especially if you go in the last week of September when the local festival goes on for 5 consecutive nights.The food was very substantial and good, even the breakfast which I was particularly grateful for.  

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bob was very knowledgable and always in good spirits. I just wish I had gone in late spring when I could have made more use of his knowledge about flowers and plants, too.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The weather was unusually cold for the time of the year, so bring warm clothes and some gloves just in case.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The hotel has a lovely bar - drinks much cheaper than at home. Try some tinto de verano (red wine with ice and lemonade), maybe an unusual experience, but very nice.

  • 8

    WALKING THE SPANISH HEARTLAND

    This was a walking holiday where each days walk was very different

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Although initially the countryside looked very similar when cresting a ridge or exiting woodland the vista never ceased to amaze. Getting close to numerous Griffin vultures 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bob Mason was excellent, he had a wealth of local knowledge and knew all the local people (eg hotel owner, bodega owner). Due to unseasonal weather Bob (with our consent) changed the itinerary, this did not have any negative impact and may have even enhanced the overall holiday. He also arranged through his local contacts a visit to the local church/museum.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    No

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Holiday coincided with loocal fiesta which did affect our sleep in a hotel that had no soundproofing but our leader and the cameraderie of the group still made it a very enjoyable week

  • 6

    SIERRA DE LAS MAMBLAS

    An opportunity to stay in a mediaeval town which feels like 'real' Spain. Covarrubias is a delight and the hotel staff worked hard to make us comfortable. Nearly all meals are included in the cost of the holiday, with a choice of local wine so not many extras to be paid for when you get there. The walking is enjoyable and the extra activities enhance the holiday. 

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing the vultures fly overhead. Burgos cathedral was beautiful.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bob was very efficient, able to plan to the minute how long we would be out. His attention to health & safety was at times a little over zealous for a group of walkers who had considerable experience of walking. The terrain was not difficult but the temperatures were hard to tolerate at times and he could have demonstrated more empathy for those used to the English climate. His knowledge of the flowers and the local area was good. He spoke to the Spanish staff and owners on our behalf and arranged the menu choices. He organised many extra activities on the day off (to Burgos and a tour of the town) and in the evenings (to vespers at Silos and a local wine producer) and accompanied us at all times. This may not suit travellers who like a little more independence. 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The walking is mostly on tracks and roads so can be hard on the feet and the week we went it was very hot. Bob was reluctant to alter the route or timings to avoid the worst of the heat so take a hat and be prepared to carry lots of water! 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This is a good opportunity to practise your Spanish! Take a phrase book to help you talk with the very friendly locals!

  • 10

    SIERRA DE LAS MAMBLAS

    This is a great trip - beautiful location with a variety of walks taking in some small villages on the way. The mountains are not very steep and the summits are inaccessible so its more of a moderate than a challenging grade. I found it a very relaxing trip with plenty of time in the evening to relax with a cold beer.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The evening visit to Vespers to hear the Benedictine Monks doing their Gregorian Chant. Watching the vultures perched on the edges of the cliffs and gliding overhead.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bob was very helpful and knowledgable about the area.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It was very hot so be prepared for that - bring breathable socks or you could end up with a heat rash.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 8

    Take a second look at SIERRA DE LAS MAMBLAS

    Interesting scenery sprinkled with a few really, truely spectacular vistas. Dry, Mediterranean forests and farmland, a little bit of fauna and tonnes of fantastic flora in all its flowery and scented glory in Spring. The remains of plenty of interesting ancient and modern history was seen and discussed. Authentic villages, both rundown and renovated, without the fake touristy smiles. I'm even considering doing this trip a second time.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    On (I think) the second day we lunched in the shade of a large rock at the top of a ridge and I looked out on the opposite ridge line, with other ridgelines in the distance (I guess that's the "sierra" bit of the region), and I also saw the broad strip of patchwork farmland in the lower part of the valleys, and saw a sheppard with his/her flock. I loved seeing the overall pattern of the natural and human landscape. I saw it several times over the week, and from more spectacular viewing points, but that first time impressed me the most.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bob knows the area well, has obviously done his research well and has walked every trail and path in the region. He was always able to explain where we were in relation to Covarrubias (home) and other sites we had visit or were yet to visit. He also pointed out opportunities for short cuts home, so it was good to know that there was a lot of flexibility in our route (if say, a massive storm came through). He also has a very good approach to briefing: we were absolutely clear about what was coming up for the day (unlike other wonderful, charming, and more charismatic leaders I've had with Exodus in the past who kept describing the day's landscape as "undulating" regardless of whether that was flat-undulating or mountainous-undulating, hehehe). I think Bob's approach is ideal for people who prefer the security of knowing exactly what's coming up in terms of physical effort or the most minor of expenses. Despite that, he also kept a couple of nifty "surprises" up his sleeve, which were fun too. What Bob lacks in charisma, he more than makes up for in knowledge and anticipation of the group's needs.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Water: The tap water at the hotel is drinkable so don't waste your luggage space with water purifiers. Laundry: I couldn't see any laundry facilities available at all, so several of us did hand washing, but we were asked not to hang stuff on our balconies outside during the day. Paths: While the paths are mostly perfectly OK, there are a few paths on a slope with a bit of loose stone, so walking sticks are a plus if your legs are a bit wobbly. Additionally, on the routes Bob took on my week, there were two very steep, and potentially slippery bits of path. They needed all my attention for about 10 minutes each. Bob did warn us ahead of time that they were coming up, so it was possible to avoid them (and on one occasion, one person did take the shortcut home). Nonetheless, 99% of the walking was quite easy to moderate and at no point were we ever rushed. The pace was quite leisurely with plenty of breaks, which meant that the group pretty much stayed fairly close together; never more than a few hundred metres between first and last person. Nonetheless, that distance also provided enough space to get a bit of privacy in discussions too, if it was wanted.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    If you can possibly swing it, I'd strongly recommend going in May: the flowers and scented herbage are at exactly the right growth stage, the weather is warm enough but also cool enough for exertion Just for the record, on my trip, everyone in the group was really lovely and some were quite funny, and most were very interesting. I'm over 45 and was one of the youngest in the group. No one was a fuddy duddy (not at all!) but I guess that the nature of the trip attracts people like us. I suspect that a very modern-type of person in the 18-30 age group might find a group like mine a little boring, socially. I think the social side of these walking holidays is easily 50% of the fun (otherwise you'd do a self-guided trip, right?) so that might be a factor to take into account in selecting the trip.

  • 8

    SIERRA DE LAS MAMBLAS

    Comfortable walking in rural Spain from a base in a small village. Great views, good food and friendly locals. Best of all not a fast food resturant in sight. This is Real Spain.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking along a ridge at eye level with a flying Vulture. Sitting on the ridge with the wind in my hair after a warm climb to the top. Listening to the Monks sing. Sunrise on the last morning. Eating home made tapas in the sun.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bob was great, really knows the area well and nothing is too much trouble for him.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Learn a few Spainish phases before you go as this is not an area where you meet many English speakers. Limber up your knees before you go as a few of the descents were over loose stones. Bone up on a little Spanish history it will help understand the area.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This is not an area of dramatic scenery but the gentle rolling hills give wonderful walking. You will emerse your self in Spanish culture and learn there is more than straw donkey's and sangria to Spain.

  • 10

    SIERRA DE LAS MAMBLAS

    An interesting and value for money trip that explores an area of Spain off the usual tourist trail. The locals, including those at the hotel and other villagers, were genuinely friendly and helpful. The food at the hotel was excellent and they produced regional dishes using local produce that included honey, cherries and wine. The walks, wildlife and scenery were all delightful.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    What did you think of your group leader?

    In our opinion Bob Mason is one of the best tour leaders we’ve experienced in many years of group walking. He paced the group appropriately so that we always arrived back at the hotel in good time to relax before dinner. The walks were well thought-out, planned and varied. He was very well-informed about the local flora and fauna and made the walks interesting by passing on some of his extensive knowledge. He was always calm and patient and showed an interest in everybody. Bob gave 'added value' to our holiday and made it memorable.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 10

    SIERRA DE LAS MAMBLAS

    This really was a great holiday. Everything just worked out well and I came home feeling refreshed and relaxed. The week was everything I was looking for - great walks and Spanish culture mixed together in just the right amount. I was also lucky to meet a great group of people who helped make the holiday more enjoyable.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    It's difficult to pinpoint one moment, there were many good ones. Was it the unexpected sighting of the fox as is trotted accross the field of poppies? Or the wonderful 360 degree view from the top of the mountain as we ate our locally bought picnic on the last day? Or maybe the ethereal sound of the monks singing vespers in Silos cathedral? It could just have been the taste of a well deserved cold beer drunk in the peaceful square outside the hotel watching the Storks nesting on the church roof. No, too many to choose from I'm afraid.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bob was great fun and his enthusiasm was infectious. He went out of his way to make sure everyone enjoyed themselves and his experience and local knowledge really added to the whole experience.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take a small set of binoculars for spotting the wildlife and maybe a small bird/butterfly book. Insect repellent is very useful, the midges weren't biting but when it got hot there were quite a lot of them. Don't miss the town tour of Covvarubias it's full of surprises.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The website doesn't really do this holiday justice. This area of Spain is often quite ignored and that's a shame because it really is quite lovely. I wondered if being centre based would mean the walks were quite similiar but everyday was different and interesting. Covvarubias is a charming town with interesting history and well worth the visit, and the surrounding countryside is beautiful. If you like Spain and want to find out more then this holiday is for you. Despite the fact that we walked approx 10 -12 miles a day it really didn't feel like it because it was fun and interesting. Go and see for yourself!

  • 8

    SIERRA DE LAS MAMBLAS

    As a new member of the 'Exodus experience' I am happy to report the holiday was a complete success and exceeded expectations. The variety of the walks; the colours, fragrances, views...... The assault on the senses was amazing.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Possibly the realisation (each day) that the walks could not have been experienced without the knowledge of our group leader - Bob's love of the area and his desire to share with us this beautiful remote part of Spain. The stunning mountain ranges, the lush green valleys, the abundance of wild flowers, the villages, the tranquility, the wide blue skies........    

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very experienced and aware of the needs of all the members in the group. He gave encouragement when needed and always kept us fully informed about everything.  Details of each walk were highlighted the night before and  then during the walk Bob's comprehensive knowledge of the area was dispatched on route! His concern for our comfort and well being, ensuring we all enjoyed our Spanish holiday was evident from beginning to end. He even found coffee houses in the most remote of places!   

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Group walking is a joy and this holiday with a knowledgable leader to guide and inform was a terrific experience and one I can highly recommend. Grab your old comfy boots and give it a go! 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 10

    SIERRA DE LAS MAMBLAS

    An absolutley fabulous holiday in spectacular countryside, hills, mountains, valleys.  Wonderful old villages and hermitages all full of history and beauty.  Covarrubias, where we stayed was delightful.  The hotel, simple but very well run. Excellent food and very comfortable accommodation, linen changed three time during week and towels every day.  Our guide, Bob Mason was excellent and very knowledgable.  We saw wonderful wide flowers and he imparted the history of the area very wel indeed.   I would highly reccommend this holiday.   I had a great time and look forward to another trip with Exodus in 2012.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Standing at the top of the wonderful montains and viewing the wonderful scenery all around us. Visiting the monastery at Santo Domingo de Silos and our trip to Burgos - great

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bob Mason was absolutly wonderful.   His attention to detail was very good and his knowledge of the area extremly interesting.    I could not doubt his capabilities and he look after the group very very well.  Great fun.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Good comfortable walking boots essential and a good sense of humour.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 8

    SIERRA DE LAS MAMBLAS

    This holiday exceeded all expectations:  wonderful countryside, fantastic wildflowers, mediaeval village with stork nesting on church tower, good well-thought out itinerary.  We were well looked after by the hotel owner and our guide and the walks were achievable by our group of 60 to 70 year olds!! 

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The walk to Santo Domingo de Silos was the most challenging (only 5 of us went). We followed an old pilgrim's route up from the Arlanza valley to a plateau, through a wonderful meadow of wildflowers, then up a steep, rocky path to the top of a ridge.  The view from there was spectacular, looking across to San Carlos.  A further steep, rocky path led us to another ridge, then down to the village of Silos for a well-deserved beer. Another day, walking along an old mule track in a beautiful valley between the tumbled down village of Castroceniza and Ura, stands out as being special.  Watching the vultures (both Griffon and Eqyptian) while having our picnic in the shade of an overhanging cliff, with the clouds drifting overhead against the blue sky, and a stream gurgling below.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The walks were both well planned and well paced.  Bob's knowledge of the area was a great asset - he knew the local people and the history of the area. His attention to detail was great and we felt very well looked after.  We were fortunate to have met him before the holiday - he came walking with our group (Pontesbury Plodders) whilst at home in Shropshire in April - so it was like meeting an old friend.  Next year, it's Austria! 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    You may think the countryside looks rather barren in photographs. Don't be put off.  The valleys are green with wheat fields, meadows, vineyards, cherry orchards and walnut groves (though the latter are suffering from blight).  But the hills are rocky and paths stony - however, they are covered in juniper scrub and smell divine with wild thyme, lavender and gorse.  Botanists love limestone country and this doesn't disappoint.  We saw early purple orchid, lady orchid, bee orchid, white helleborine, rock soapwort, blue aphyllanthes, white rockrose, asphodel, Pyrenean flax, Star of Bethlehem, tassel hyacinth, thyme broomrape, common storksbill, kidney vetch, and lots more.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I was rather daunted by the thought of walking 10 miles a day every day, but it's amazing what you can do when you try.  The walks were set at a pace to suit us all, and by taking all day over them and having frequent stops, they were achieved in relative comfort and, although we were concerned it might be too hot, there was a breeze most days and the air that high up was invigorating.

  • 10

    SIERRA DE LAS MAMBLAS

    This is a great holiday with a wide range of scenery, wildlife and plants to see.  It is located in a beautiful part of Spain and is a really good walking holiday. The hotel is very comfortable. hospitable and friendly.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The variety of orchids and birds was a real eye opener.  I did not expect to see Egyption buzzards.  The villages present a range of architectural styles. Attendance at vespers one evenings was quite spiritual!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellent organisation, knowledge and planning made certain that this was a great holiday.  Nothing was too much trouble for Bob.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Yes book now!!  Be prepared for some great days and long evenings in the bar!!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I have been on many Exodus holidays but this centre is a real winner.  A really good hotel and excellent service.  Tremendous value for money and a great time as well.

  • 8

    Secret trails of Mediaeval Spain

    An exhilarating walk in a rarely visited area. Covarrubias, the base, is a delightful and picturesque but quiet town; the hotel we stayed in was friendly and welcoming (not least for wine at 1 euro a glass!). The surrounding countryside with its mountainous slopes and vast woodlands offers demanding, but not too exhausting walking. The views from the ridges and tops are spectacular. A rest day in Burgos with vespers at the Silos monastery (optional) provides a pleasant break from the walking days. A thoroughly recommended trip!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Views from the mountain tops and visit to the monastery

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Chris was excellent - supportive, informative and prepared to be flexible

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Go for the tortilla option in the packed lunches - much the most sustaining sandwich on offer

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 10

    A great trip led by a great leader!

    Signed up for this with a friend - our first walking holiday with Exodus and we weren't disappointed! Based out of Covarrubias, a picturesque and characterful town 2hrs north of Madrid - an undiscovered gem off the usual tourist route. 5 days of walking and each day was different, striking off in a different direction each morning. The terrain was varied and we had some fantastic views! Our leader Emily was wonderful - the perfect combination of enthusiasm and professionalism, and so full of knowledge about the local area and the walks themselves. Our day off trip to nearby Burgos was also a pleasant surprise - plenty to see for those culturally/ religiously inclined (famous cathedral and spotting Camino pilgrims) as well as modern evolution museum that far surpassed expectations. Would highly recommend this for all ages - the name of the trip implies a more historic trip - and while there was certainly plenty of history, the emphasis was most definitely on the hikes themselves.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    A great ridge walk on our final day that allowed some of the best views of the trip. The daily dinners provided by the local hotel - some true spanish home cooking - surpassing all expectations in both quality and quantity!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Emily was absolutely fantastic - a real asset to Exodus. So knowledgeable and enthusiastic, and handled difficult situations with sensitivity.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bring lots of layers! The weather was unpredictable when we were there in June - going from 27c to 17c in a single week.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 10

    A Great Trip!

    Having enjoyed travelling with Exodus several times now, we were certainly not disappointed this time - this trip was one of the best. Covarrubias has a charming small medieval town centre, and the hotel is well-situated in the old part where limited traffic access meant it was very peaceful. The hotel was very comfortable and the meals good - substantial breakfasts and varied dinners (with wine provided). Our host, Eloy, looked after us very well. The walking matched the grade very well for us - 17-20 km walks with leisurely 9.30am starts, and usually ending back at the hotel between 4pm and 5pm - in time for a relaxing beer or two afterwards under the shady trees in the square. The climbs were often gradual, with just a few steep pinches; but the views from the top were well worth the effort. The maximum climbing in one day was 450m (not all at once though). We often had quite hot weather (up to 33°C), but as a lot of the climbs were in the morning, often in partial shade, this wasn't too bad. Rucksacks were a bit heavy though, with up to 2 litres of water, packed lunch and the precautionary waterproofs etc. The main effect of the hot weather was some sore feet after long descents on stony paths - very comfortable boots are needed for such conditions. All but one of the walks started from the hotel, taking us quickly into the lovely countryside. The vast expanses of wild flowers were an unexpected bonus (we thought they'd be over by June). All the walks took in different views and terrain, and were planned to allow for plenty of opportunities to stand and stare, take photos and enjoy leisurely elevenses and lunch. The villages were interesting, if rather quiet. The free day spent in Burgos was worthwhile. The cathedral is spectacular, and the town centre very pleasant to wander around, especially by the river. For a more relaxing day it's worth sharing a taxi to return to Covarrubias late afternoon rather than taking the regular 1pm bus.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Highlights were - panoramic views from ridges or mountain tops, fields of wildflowers, isolated villages, Burgos cathedral.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Emily, was great - very friendly, knowledgeable and with relaxed leadership. She paced the walks very well.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Watch out for the stairs in the hotel. A few of our group missed their footing coming down where the stairs turn - the dark wood stain makes the edges hard to see, even with the light on.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

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