6-Night Exmoor Guided Walking

Porlock, Somerset, England
Duration: 6 nights
Type: Guided Walking
Walking Grade: 2 & 3
from £799pp £739pp

The sweeping hills, wooded combes and glorious seascapes of the Exmoor National Park reward every footstep with an astonishing range of landscapes and moods to enjoy. Vibrant yellow gorse, purple heather, wild ponies and red deer meet a backdrop of huge blue skies and seas, adding a colourful variety to our Guided Walks.

Holiday Highlights

  • Head out on guided walks to discover the varied beauty of Exmoor on foot
  • Admire panoramic moorland views and expansive seascapes
  • Let an experienced leader bring classic routes and offbeat areas to life
  • Visit some of Somerset's most beautiful picture postcard villages
  • Look out for wildlife, find secret corners and learn about the history of the moors and coastline
  • Discover the clarity of the night sky in this International Dark Sky Reserve
  • A relaxed pace of discovery in a sociable group keen to get some fresh air in one of England’s most beautiful walking areas
  • Evenings in our country house where you share a drink and re-live the day’s adventures

What’s included

  • High quality en-suite accommodation in our country house
  • Full board from dinner upon arrival to breakfast on departure day
  • 4 days guided walking; 1 free day
  • Choice of up to three guided walks each walking day
  • The services of HF Holidays Walking Leaders
  • Any transport to and from the walks

Trip Notes

Trip notes are detailed, downloadable PDFs for each holiday.

Download Trip Notes

On our Guided Walking holidays, we believe that choice is key. Our walks descriptions will help you choose according to your interests and fitness. The walks are grouped together with care by local experts to give the best experience. While every effort will be made to adhere to the described itinerary, we may occasionally vary the sequence shown here or substitute an alternative route to suit local conditions or for other operational reasons, potentially at short notice.

You're welcome to check in from 4pm onwards.


Option 1 - Hurlstone Point, Bossington and Selworthy

Distance: 6 miles (9.5km)

Ascent: 800 feet (240m)  

In Summary: Walk to the charming villages of Allerford and Bossington, before continuing to the coast at Hurlstone Point. Our return route traverses the wooded slopes to Selworthy village, with time to explore.

Highlight: Wander through the once extensive Holnicote Estate to the 'model village' of Selworthy, with its collection of 'chocolate box' thatched cottages. 

Option 2 - The Beacon & Bratton

Distance: 9 miles (14.5km)

Ascent: 1,750 feet (560m)

In Summary: Our circuit from Holnicote House ascends through the woods to the top of Selworthy Beacon. Having followed the hill-top path we'll return through the fields to Selworthy village.

Highlight: Discover St Agnes Fountain, a small spring dating from 1820, hidden in the beautiful wooded slopes of Selworthy Beacon.

Option 3 - Selworthy Beacon via Cliffs, Combes & Coastal Path

Distance: 10 miles (16km)

Ascent: 1,300 feet (380m) 

In Summary: Head through the woods to Hurlstone Point, then along the rugged coastal path that meanders along the northern slopes of Selworthy Beacon. We'll then ascend onto the summit and return via Selworthy village.

Highlight: This section of the coast path has a real 'away from it all' feel as it traverses around three deep combes above the sea.


Option 1 - East of Holnicote

Distance: 6.5 miles (10.5km)

Ascent: 1,100 feet (340m) 

In Summary: An interesting circular walk exploring the countryside to the east of Holnicote House. Our route takes us through the pretty village of Luccombe, along the foot of Dunkery Hill and returning via the charming Selworthy village.

Highlight: Selworthy village was rebuilt in 1828 by the Acland family to house the elderly workers of the Holnicote estate.

Option 2 - Porlock and the Coast

Distance: 7.5 miles (12km)

Ascent: 1,250 feet (380m)

In Summary: A varied circuit from the house taking in the historic village of Porlock on the way to the coast. Then a modest climb to Hurlstone Point before returning through picture post-card villages to the house.

Highlight: Coastal views and shingle beach at Bossington and the old Coastguard Station viewpoint at Hurlstone Point.

Option 3 - Dunkery Beacon & Great Rowbarrow

Distance: 11 miles (17.5km)

Ascent: 2,000 feet (620m)

In Summary: A strenuous circular walk visiting the highest point on Exmoor and Somerset. The descent takes us past the tiny Stoke Pero Church, the highest church on Exmoor, and back through Horner Woods alongside Horner Water.

Highlight: There are great views from the top of Dunkery Beacon making the ascent well worth the effort! 



Option 1 - Prettiest Villages in Somerset

Distance: 7 miles (10.5km)

Ascent: 1,100 feet (340m)

In summary: A circular walk exploring the countryside and villages around Holnicote House. Our route takes us to the coast via the village of Bossington, returning along the wooded slopes to charming Selworthy village. 

Highlight: Selworthy village was rebuilt in 1828 by the Acland family to house the elderly workers of the Holnicote estate. The tea room is a delightful spot to relax in towards the end of the walk.

Option 2 - Lucott Farm

Distance: 9 miles (14.5km)

Ascent: 1,900 feet (580m)

In summary: A circuit visiting Horner packhorse bridge and oak woodlands en route to Lucott Farm and continuing above Hawk Combe to West Luccombe and then to Holnicote.

Highlight: The Horner packhorse bridge is the oldest in Somerset. Beautiful native woodland and moorland views.

Option 3 - Periton Hill

Distance: 11 miles (16km)

Ascent: 2,050 feet (620m)

In summary: After climbing to Webber’s Post, we will traverse the lower slopes of Dunkery Hill before passing through Wootton Courtenay and crossing over the wooded slopes above the village. We skirt Minehead before returning to Selworthy.

Highlight: The beaver enclosure on the Holnicote Estate at the start of the walk. Fantastic views and a possible tea stop on Selworthy Green.


Option 1 - Selworthy and its Beacon

Distance: 5 miles (8km)  

Ascent: 1,100 feet (340m)

In summary: We begin with a short walk to the village of Allerford, from here we head through West Lynch and on to St Agnes Fountain, a small hidden spring dating from 1820. Our ascent begins to the famous viewpoint of Selworthy Beacon it is worth the effort. Our descent takes us through the pretty Selworthy village and back to Holnicote House. 

Highlight: Spectacular views from Selworthy Beacon, to Nash Point Lighthouse, the Quantocks and beyond on a clear day. 

Option 2 - Dunkery Beacon

Distance: 9 miles (14.5km)

Ascent: 1,900 feet (580m)

In Summary: This is a circular walk visiting the highest point on Exmoor and Somerset. The walk takes us through woodland and then moorland to Dunkery Beacon and returns on a meandering path alongside the delightful river Horner.

Highlight: The views from the top of Dunkery Beacon are fabulous. The tea room at Horner is also a welcome stopping off point. 

Option 3 - Villages, Beach, Selworthy Beacon and Coastal path

Distance: 11 miles (17.5km)

Ascent: 1,600 feet (500m)

In Summary: A longer circuit through the Holnicote Estate takes us to the coast at Hurlstone Point, then along the ridge over Selworthy Beacon. Eventually we descend from North Hill and return via Selworthy village.

Highlight: Enjoy the great views from the top of Selworthy Beacon - on a clear day you can see across the Bristol Channel to the Brecon Beacons.


Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before making your way home. 


Holnicote House

Lying near the attractive village of Selworthy, in the heart of the Exmoor National Park, historic Holnicote House stands within a series of peaceful gardens with spreading lawns. Once the centrepiece of an extensive 12,500 acre estate, the charming and characterful house was gifted to the National Trust in 1944. Since then it has been reimagined as a walkers’ retreat, with wonderful access to the countryside. As well as 32 delightful bedrooms, there are two comfortable lounges and a sociable bar. The landscaped gardens are still part of the wider Holnicote Estate and provide a wonderful area to wander. Outside the house, explore wild Exmoor, walk in the Quantocks, climb Dunkery Beacon and stroll on the Somerset Coast Path with the opportunity to walk in the footsteps of Samuel Taylor Coleridge, drop in Dunster Castle, ride a Victorian cliff railway and watch for wildlife including the majestic red stags.

Rooms

Tea & coffee-making facilities, TV, Hairdryer, Toiletries, Wi-Fi

Stay in one of the main building’s bright, beautifully presented rooms or in the thatched cottages in the grounds, called Butlers and Guns respectively. With 32 bedrooms, Holnicote House has plenty of space and there’s a range of Good, Better and Best Rooms to choose from: best rooms are on the first floor and decorated in keeping with the National Trust estate, with plenty of space and great views over the back garden, reaching out across Crawter Hill and Dunkery Hill, Somerset and Exmoor’s highest point. Ask for numbers 1, 4 or 9 to feel suitably special.

All ‘Good’ rooms are ensuite and furnished to a high standard. There are also several ‘Better’ and ‘Best’ Rooms that are either larger or have a desirable view, a more luxurious mattress, larger television, enhanced toiletries and a fluffy bathrobe & slippers – upgrade your stay for just an extra £15-25 per person per night. You can choose a specific room for an extra £30 per room, subject to availability. Upgrade supplements still apply.

Facilities

Free Wi-Fi, boot room and drying room, attractive garden, outdoor swimming pool, multi-purpose activity room, lounge, library and board games to borrow

After a day walking on Exmoor or exploring the heath and moorland, come back to the house and its specially tailored walkers’ facilities. Relax by sitting in the pretty gardens or challenge a fellow guest to a game of croquet. Take a dip in the large heated outdoor pool. For something less strenuous, snag a comfy chair in one of the cosy lounges, borrow a book, join a game of cards or scour the countryside through the large telescope. Head to the bar before dinner for a drink and a chance to catch up with your companions, best enjoyed by the windows overlooking the estate.

Food & Drink

As at all our country houses, holidays are full board, from afternoon tea served as a welcome treat through that evening’s meal to a hearty breakfast on the day of departure. Lunch is a chance to stock up on our famous picnic snacks. Food at Holnicote House is hearty and has a strong emphasis on ingredients from the area and seasonal produce. Once a week the wood panelled dining room with its giant fireplace hosts a Local Food Night, when, over a sociable evening, you might try classic Porlock oysters or Priddy Oggies, a local pasty of chicken, bacon and cheese. Mains might include Exmoor venison or Bellbrook valley trout, while you could cap it all with a Somerset apple cake, dressed with cream.

Accessibility

For accessibility and assistance information, please contact our expert team on 020 3974 8865

10684_0056 Holnicote House - Exterior

Getting to Holnicote House

Find out more about this location including travel details and room types.

More Information

What to Bring

“There’s no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong type of clothing!” goes the adage. Come prepared for all eventualities and you’ll walk in comfort as well as safety. Britain’s famous for its changeable weather, so here’s our advice on what to wear and bring.

Essentials

  • Waterproof walking boots providing ankle support and good grip.
  • A waterproof jacket and over-trousers
  • Gloves and a warm hat (it can be chilly at any time of the year)
  • Rucksack
  • Water bottle (at least 1 litre capacity)
  • A small torch (everywhere in winter, year round in mountains)
  • Sun hat and sunscreen
    Denim jeans and waterproof capes are not suitable on any walks.

Recommended

  • Several layers of clothing, which can be added or removed
  • Specialist walking socks to avoid blisters.
  • A first aid kit inc plasters– your leader’s first aid kit doesn’t contain any medication
  • Sit mat (insulated pad to sit on when you stop for a break)

You might also want

  • Walking poles, particularly useful for descents.
  • Insect repellent
  • Flask for hot drinks
  • Rigid lunch box
  • Gaiters
  • Blister kit (eg Compeed) just in case
  • Waterproof rucksack liner

Guest Reviews

All holidays are subject to availability. Prices are subject to change.
Prices based on two people sharing. Supplements may apply.
Non-member fee: £20 per person.

Holiday Prices

Date (Start - End) Nights Itinerary Price Status Trip Notes Book
2020
19 Sep - 25 Sep
6 2020 Guided Walking £799 £739 Save £60 Per Person Trip Notes Book Now
Duration:
6 nights
Type:
Guided Walking
Walking Grade:
2

6 nights from £799pp £739pp

...or call 020 3974 8865

For group bookings of 10+ people click here

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