7-Night Scottish Highlands Christmas Guided Walking Holiday for Solos

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Duration: 7 nights
Type: Guided Walking
Walking Grade: 3, 4 & 5

Spend the festive season in the Scottish Highlands, socialising and walking in this beautiful place. There’s something magical about walking in winter. Whether it’s the frosty footsteps, the clear crisp air, or the breathtaking views, it’s a wonderful time to go walking. Join our festive breaks and choose from a guided walking holiday in the company of one of our knowledgeable leaders. We pull out all the stops on our festive holidays, with fabulous food, lots of seasonal entertainment and great walks and activities. The walks are tailored to the time of year and will remain flexible to suit the weather conditions. Each day three grades of walk will be offered. So wrap up warm, lace up your boots and go for an invigorating walk. The walks in the West Highlands can be sublime at this time of year, however they can be also be challenging because of the combination of short daylight hours and sometimes extreme weather. We will not be walking on terrain which demands specialist skills and equipment such as ice axes and crampons.

Holiday Highlights

  • Plenty of exercise to walk off the festive excesses
  • A choice of guided walks in spectacular winter scenery
  • Just relax, soak up the party atmosphere, enjoy wonderful festive fare and leave all the organising to us
  • Evening activities include dancing, quizzes and festive celebrations
  • Cosy Country House and a special festive cheer

What’s included

  • Wonderful meals – full selection at breakfast, your choice of picnic lunch, an excellent evening meal and plenty of festive treats
  • A programme of organised walks and activities
  • The services of experienced HF Holidays’ guides
  • A packed programme of evening activities offering something festive for everyone, including some old HF favourites
  • Any transport to and from the walks

Trip Notes

Trip notes are detailed, downloadable PDF’s for each holiday, please click the button below to find the right trip notes for your departure date.

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

Enjoy a complimentary Afternoon Tea on arrival.


Option 1 - Nevis Riverside & Fort William Heights

Distance: 6 miles (10 km) 

Ascent: 900 feet (280m) 

In Summary: From the heart of the mountains we follow the River Nevis downstream, below the towering Ben Nevis, descending to Fort William.

HighlightExploring the river Nevis, with its falls and wildlife

Option 2 - The Nevis Gorge

Distance: 7 miles (11½km) 

Ascent: 1,450 feet (440m) 

In Summary: Walk through the Nevis Gorge below the towering Ben Nevis. Our route meanders through the wooded gorge where the torrent churns between giant boulders, to emerge into the wide vistas of the Steall Meadow.  

HighlightThe magnificent An Steall waterfall is the third highest cascade in Britain. 

 

 

Option 3 - Below the North Face

Distance: 9 miles (14km)

Ascent: 2,600 feet (800m)

In summary: Ascend to the climbers’ hut below the mighty north face of Ben Nevis. We then contour below the massive Castle Ridge buttress and descend via the Pony Track to Glen Nevis.

Highlight: An opportunity to see the towering cliffs of the 'Ben's' North Face up close. These mighty cliffs provide some of Britain's best rock and ice climbing.


Option 1 - Loch Linnhe Shore

Distance:  miles (8 km) 

Ascent: 155 feet (40m)

In SummaryWalk from the house along the shores of Loch Linnhe and return back to the house

HighlightExploring the shores of the beautiful Loch Linnhe.

Option 2 - Gleann a Chaolais Circuits

Distance: 6 miles (10km)

Total ascent: 950ft (300m)

In Summary: We walk from the house, cross the Ballachulish Bridge and then via a traffic St John’s Church in Ballachulish back to the house. Along the way we take in the glorious forest trails of Gleann a Chaolais.

Highlight: Superb views across Loch Leven and Loch Linnhe on one side and the imposing and atmospheric Beinn a Bheithir on the other.

Option 3 - Sgorr Dhearg

Distance: 9.5 miles (15.5km)

Ascent: 3,700 feet (1120m)

In Summary: Starting from Alltshellach we cross the bridge and follow gently rising tracks through the forest.  The path then narrows and steepens until it emerges from the forest below the dramatic horseshoe ridge of Beinn a' Bheithir.  We head towards the col then turn left to follow a wide range up to the summit of Beinn Dhearg.We return by the same route to the valley of Gleann a' Chalois and walk back on forest tracks, over the Balachulish Bridge to the house.

Highlight: In the right conditions, the view from the summit includes the mountains above Glencoe, Ben Nevis and several Hebridean Islands.


Option 1 - Mamore Lodge and Grey Mare's Waterfall

Distance: 6 miles (10km)

Ascent: 1450ft (440m)

In Summary: We view the Grey Mares waterfall then follow follow paths and the Old Military Road along the flanks of Sgurr an Fhuarain, visiting fine viewpoints, before heading back to Kinlochleven  

Highlight: Exploring the history of the Old Military Road and looking at the views of the Mamores and Loch Leven.

Option 2 - The Lairigmor

Distance: 8 miles (13km) 

Ascent: 2,050 feet (620m) 

In Summary: Walk from the northern shore of Loch Leven to the village of Kinlochleven. We’ll take a steep path up the hillside, then contour behind Mam na Gualainn to join the West Highland Way. 

Highlight: Follow the West Highland Way, Scotland’s premier long distance path, along part of General Wade’s 18th Century military road.

Option 3 - Beinn na Caillich

Distance: 8 miles (12.5km) 

Ascent: 3,200 feet (980m) 

In SummaryFollow the undulating mountain ridge over the summits of Mam na Gualainn and Beinn na Caillich, before descending to join the West Highland Way to Kinlochleven. 

HighlightThe 'Corbett' summit of Mam na Gualainn commands a fine view over Loch Leven and provides a good warm up for the other adventurous peaks later in the holiday.



Option 1 - Historic Glen Coe

Distance: 8 miles (13km) 

Ascent: 1,200 feet (360m) 

In Summary: Discover Glen Coe's turbulant history and connections to the Clan MacDonald. We'll follow woodland paths to the scenic "Hospital Lochan" then descend to the Clachaig Inn in Glen Coe. 

Highlight: Celebrate the completion of your walk at the Clachaig Inn, a climber’s hostelry steeped in history. Nearby Signal Rock was the gathering point for the MacDonalds of Glen Coe at times of emergency.

Option 2 - The Lost Valley and Glencoe

Distance: 6 miles (9.8km)

Ascent: 850ft (270m)

In Summary: We follow a steep and rocky path along the Allt Coire Gabhail and explore the hidden valley before returning along the same route.

Highlight: Explore a beautiful valley that even today feels hidden and inaccessible.

Option 3 - Pap of Glencoe

Distance: 7.1 miles (11.4km)

Ascent: 2812ft (857m)

In Summary: Leaving Glencoe we head into a forest and walk along paths and track to a small lochan. We then steeply climb through the forest onto the open mountain side. More steep and rocky ground follows before we reach the summit. We then descend, roughly following the Allt a’ Mhuilinn back towards the valley.

Highlight: A steep walk to the summit is rewarded with superb views of the surrounding mountains and Loch Leven.


Option 1 - Kentallen Peninsula

Distance:  miles (11.5km) 

Ascent: 600 feet (180m) 

In SummaryA coastal walk around the Kentallen Peninsula is a wonderful contrast to the inland mountains. Our route takes us around Cuil Bay and Kentallen Bay to finish at the Holly Tree Hotel. 

HighlightThe headland of Rubha Mor offers sweeping views across Loch Linnhe to the Isle of Mull and is a great place for spotting birds and seals.

Option 2 - Glen Duror

Distance: 9 miles (14.5km)

Ascent: 1,450 feet (460m)

In summary: From the ancient settlement of Duror we walk through Glens Duror and Fhiodh in the heart of the mountains. A route steeped in history.

Highlight: The birthplace of 'James of the Glen' at the head of Glen Duror.

 

Option 3 - Meall Mor

Distance: 7 miles (11.5km)

Ascent: 2500ft (760m)

In summary: We gain height following wooded tracks and paths until we break free of the trees and start ascending one of the ridges dropping from the summit. After taking in the views from the top, we descend towards Ballachulish, via the smaller summit of Am Meall.

Highlight: The summit provides a fantastic viewpoint of the surrounding mountains.


Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before making your way home.


Alltshellach

Situated in a stunning location on the shores of Loch Leven, Alltshellach is a stately Scottish house set amid a rugged landscape. The house is a picture of Highland solidity, with spectacular views of craggy mountains and grassy slopes beyond the loch. This pocket of domesticity lets you admire nature at your leisure though, sipping tea or G&T as you watch clouds scud across the sky. In fact, this one-time home of the Bishop of Argyll & the Isles has been recast as a hiker’s hotel, with an air of old-world splendour, excellent accommodation, three lounges and a supremely cosy Highland Bar that’s well-stocked with local beer and whisky, all of which is (almost) enough to distract you from the vast vistas over the waters. But it’s the great outdoors you’re here for and the house is ideally situated for accessing the Mamores, the mountains of Glen Coe and tackling Ben Nevis as well as bagging munros and spotting local wildlife.

 

Rooms

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

There are 38 comfortable bedrooms, all in the main house, with a range of Classic, Premium and Superior room options to choose from. Rooms radiate cosiness thanks to little touches – a remedy for even the dreichest day. Those with a view are worth the extra spend, as you’ll be overlooking the gardens and loch. The Superior rooms include Room 21, a spacious corner room with lovely views of Loch Leven, while Room 23 is a stately showstopper that was once the official Bishop’s bedroom, complete with original features and cracking views.

All ‘Classic’ rooms are ensuite and furnished to a high standard. There are also several ‘Premium’ and ‘Superior' Rooms that are either larger or have a desirable view, a more luxurious mattress and larger televisions – 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, extensive gardens, heated indoor swimming pool, multi-purpose ballroom, library and board games to borrow

After a day exploring, return to the house and its specially tailored walkers’ facilities. Stroll the gardens that dip down to the loch. The small peninsula at the bottom of the lawns is called An Dunan and often becomes an island at high tide – look for prehistoric rock art cut into the slabs on its side. Make time too to plunge into the heated indoor swimming pool (currently closed) and do a couple of lengths under the watchful eye of the mountains through the panoramic windows. Inside the house, head for one of the communal areas: you’ll have three to choose from and can kick back, relax and catch up with other guests. Later, stop in the Highland Bar for a nip of whisky or a nightcap – the comfy seats make a fine spot for a dram and there’s a range of good single malts to choose from that’ll have you believing you’re living a laird’s life.

Food & Drink

As at all of 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. Food at Alltshellach is varied with a strong emphasis on the use of seasonal British produce. Our experienced chefs create each dish using only the freshest ingredients and, when in season, use home grown herbs and vegetables taken from our own gardens to give a true taste of the local area.

Accessibility

For accessibility and assistance information, please contact our expert team on 020 3974 8865 or view the accessibility information online for Alltshellach

10682_0006 - Alltshellach - Exterior

Getting to Alltshellach

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

More Information

Essential Information

“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

Duration:
7 nights
Type:
Guided Walking
Walking Grade:
3 & 4

Fully Booked

020 3974 8865

For group bookings of 10+ people click here

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