7-Night Southern Snowdonia Tread Lightly Guided Walking Holiday

Cadair Idris
Duration: 7 nights
Type: Tread Lightly
Walking Grade: 2, 3 & 5
from £885pp £855pp

We are all well-versed in ‘leaving no trace’ but now we invite you to join us in taking it to the next level with our new Tread Lightly walks. We have pulled together a series of spectacular walks which do not use transport, reducing our carbon footprint while still exploring the best landscapes that Southern Snowdonia have to offer. You will still enjoy the choice of three top-quality walks of different grades as well as the warm welcome of a HF country house, all with the added peace of mind that you are doing your part in protecting our incredible British countryside. Steeped in history, the landscapes of southern Snowdonia unfold to reveal one of Wales’ best-kept secrets. Tucked away from the honeypot hotspots to the north of the National Park, the solitude and stunning scenery await discovery on our Guided Walking holidays.

Holiday Highlights

  • Enjoy breath-taking walks from the doors of our country house
  • Enjoy stunning views of Cader Idris and the Mawddach estuary
  • Uncover the historic parks, mansions, and forts of Southern Snowdonia
  • Explore the historic town of Dolgellau

What’s included

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

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 - Dolgellau and Glyn Arran

Distance: 7 miles (11½km)

Ascent: 1,100 ft (340m)

In Summary: Leaving the House, we walk up the Afon Clywedog , then on quiet lanes and footpaths to descend the Arran valley to Dolgellau.  We return to the house on quiet lanes on the other side of the valley.

Highlight: The beautiful Torrent Walk alongside the Afon Clywedog, and an opportunity to explore the historic town of Dolgellau.

Option 2 - Cymer Abbey, Dolgellau and Glyn Arran

Distance: 10 miles (16½km)

Ascent: 1,450 ft (440m)

In Summary: We walk west along quiet lanes to the site of Cymer Abbey, and into Dolgellau. Leaving Dolgellau, we climb up the Arran valley, and on footpaths and quiet lanes to descend the Clywedog valley to the House

Highlight: A visit to Cymer Abbey, an opportunity to explore historic Dolgellau, and the beautiful Torrent Walk alongside the Afon Clywedog

Option 3 - New Precipice Walk and Dolgellau

Distance: 12 miles (19km)

Ascent: 1,950 feet (580m)

In Summary: We walk on quiet lanes down the Mawddach valley to the village of Llanelltyd then climb through woods to the balcony New Precipice Walk, passing abandoned gold mines. Descending through woods, we cross the Afon Mawddach to follow the Mawddach Trail to Dolgellau, then by quiet lanes back to the House.

Highlight: Remains of gold mines, stunning views of Cader Idris and the Mawddach estuary, and a chance to explore historic Dolgellau.


Option 1 - Foel Caerynwch and Torrent Walk

Distance: 6 miles (9½km)

Ascent: 1,200 feet (360m)

In Summary: A circular walk from the house, we start by walking through the tranquil woods behind the house crossing streams and fields reaching Brithdir. We then ascend up to the summit of Foel Caerynwch where you can take some time to enjoy the views. Following that, we will descend to reach the very interesting St Mark's Church before walking along the river back to the house.

Highlight: Short and easy summit walk with great views at the top and a visit to St Mark's Church.

Option 2 - Roman Road, Foel Caerynwch and Torrent Walk

Distance: 7½ miles (12km)

Ascent: 1,500 feet (480m)

In Summary: Leaving the House, we climb gradually through woods to reach a Roman road, then across open moorland to the summit of Foel Caerynwch. We then descend to the road, passing St Marks Church, and descending the Torrent Walk to the House.

Highlight: Roman road, views of the Mawddach Valley and Cader Idris, the Art Nouveau St Marks Church

Option 3 - Waun Oer

Distance: 12½ miles (20km)

Ascent: 3,000 feet (880m)

In Summary: We explore the seldom visited Dyfi Hills at the southern extremity of the Snowdonia National Park. Walking steadily uphill through woods and on lanes, we cross open moorland  before climbing up to the ridge and over the summits of Waun Oer and Mynydd Ceiswyn.  Descending from the ridge, we pass through a SSSI noted for its orchids, and the Torrent Walk back to the house.

Highlight: An old coach road across open moorland, an interesting disused slate quarry, stunning views of Cader Idris, the Dyfi Hills and Dyfi Forest, and (in season) possibly finding orchids.


Option 1 - The Old Precipice Walk

Distance: 7 miles (11km)

Ascent: 1,200 ft (360m)

In Summary: We walk up through a former medieval deer park to the Precipice walk, visiting Llyn Cynwch, to a viewpoint overlooking the upper Mawddach valley, returning to the House by farm track and quiet lanes

Highlight: Historic medieval deer park, historic mansion, stunning views of south Snowdonia

Option 2 - Foel Offrwm and The Old Precipice Walk

Distance: 9 miles (15 km)

Ascent: 2,000 ft (600m)

In Summary: We walk up through a former medieval deer park, then ascend to the summit of Foel Offrwm (Hill of Sacrifice). Retracing our steps, we descend to the Old Precipice Walk, perched high above the Afon Mawddach before returning to the House by farm track and quiet lanes.

Highlight: Historic medieval deerpark, historic mansion, iron age fort, stunning views of south Snowdonia.

Option 3 - Rhobell Fawr

Distance: 12 miles (20km)

Ascent: 2,600 ft (800m)

In Summary: We climb steadily on footpaths, quiet lanes and farm tracks before our final ascent to the summit of Rhobell Fawr. Our descent initially follows the ridge to the west, thence on a track and quiet lanes back to the House.

Highlight: A superb mountain day, varied terrain and stunning views.


Option 1 - Dolgellau and Glyn Arran

Distance: 7 miles (11½km)

Ascent: 1,100 ft (340m)

In Summary: Leaving the House, we walk up the Afon Clywedog , then on quiet lanes and footpaths to descend the Arran valley to Dolgellau.  We return to the house on quiet lanes on the other side of the valley.

Highlight: The beautiful Torrent Walk alongside the Afon Clywedog, and an opportunity to explore the historic town of Dolgellau.

Option 2 - Cymer Abbey, Dolgellau and Glyn Arran

Distance: 10 miles (16½km)

Ascent: 1,450 ft (440m)

In Summary: We walk west along quiet lanes to the site of Cymer Abbey, and into Dolgellau. Leaving Dolgellau, we climb up the Arran valley, and on footpaths and quiet lanes to descend the Clywedog valley to the House

Highlight: A visit to Cymer Abbey, an opportunity to explore historic Dolgellau, and the beautiful Torrent Walk alongside the Afon Clywedog

Option 3 - New Precipice Walk and Dolgellau

Distance: 12 miles (19km)

Ascent: 1,950 feet (580m)

In Summary: We walk on quiet lanes down the Mawddach valley to the village of Llanelltyd then climb through woods to the balcony New Precipice Walk, passing abandoned gold mines. Descending through woods, we cross the Afon Mawddach to follow the Mawddach Trail to Dolgellau, then by quiet lanes back to the House.

Highlight: Remains of gold mines, stunning views of Cader Idris and the Mawddach estuary, and a chance to explore historic Dolgellau.


Option 1 - Foel Caerynwch and Torrent Walk

Distance: 6 miles (9½km)

Ascent: 1,200 feet (360m)

In Summary: A circular walk from the house, we start by walking through the tranquil woods behind the house crossing streams and fields reaching Brithdir. We then ascend up to the summit of Foel Caerynwch where you can take some time to enjoy the views. Following that, we will descend to reach the very interesting St Mark's Church before walking along the river back to the house.

Highlight: Short and easy summit walk with great views at the top and a visit to St Mark's Church.

Option 2 - Roman Road, Foel Caerynwch and Torrent Walk

Distance: 7½ miles (12km)

Ascent: 1,500 feet (480m)

In Summary: Leaving the House, we climb gradually through woods to reach a Roman road, then across open moorland to the summit of Foel Caerynwch. We then descend to the road, passing St Marks Church, and descending the Torrent Walk to the House.

Highlight: Roman road, views of the Mawddach Valley and Cader Idris, the Art Nouveau St Marks Church

Option 3 - Waun Oer

Distance: 12½ miles (20km)

Ascent: 3,000 feet (880m)

In Summary: We explore the seldom visited Dyfi Hills at the southern extremity of the Snowdonia National Park. Walking steadily uphill through woods and on lanes, we cross open moorland  before climbing up to the ridge and over the summits of Waun Oer and Mynydd Ceiswyn.  Descending from the ridge, we pass through a SSSI noted for its orchids, and the Torrent Walk back to the house.

Highlight: An old coach road across open moorland, an interesting disused slate quarry, stunning views of Cader Idris, the Dyfi Hills and Dyfi Forest, and (in season) possibly finding orchids.


Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before making your way home. 


Dolserau Hall

Walkers in the know head to southern Snowdonia to uncover one of Wales’ best-kept secrets. Stood in the heart of the Snowdonia National Park, just a couple of miles from the attractive market town of Dolgellau, Dolserau Hall makes a superb base for getting off the beaten path.  The tranquillity of the location wraps around you. A smart country house with breathtaking views from every room, attractive gardens and vistas that stretch across the valley to the summit of Cadair Idris, you’re surrounded by rural inspiration. Depending on what mood strikes, explore the Rhinogs, take on a classic ridge walk with great views, set foot on the Mawddach Trail or follow the coast to Harlech, where the eponymous medieval castle stands on a wonderful position overlooking the sweeping sands of Cardigan Bay. Croeso I Cymru, as they say around here.

 

Need to know

Important Covid-19 steps we have taken for guest safety: Please Read

Following the relaxation in government guidance on 19 July, we are continuing to take extra steps to keep our guests leaders, and staff safe in our HF country houses. We ask all our guests to respect the measures put in place.

The English, Scottish and Welsh governments are not in sync, so measures in our country houses will vary between the nations. With the relaxation of social distancing in England, from 19 July we will be allowing larger groups to dine and relax in the bar together. However, we will still give guests space e.g. we will seat 6 people at a table where pre-pandemic we may have seated 8. We will ensure our public rooms are well ventilated by opening doors and windows wherever possible. If you have any concerns about distancing, please speak to the House Manager. The government recommendation for England is to wear face coverings in crowded areas.

In Scotland and Wales physical distancing is still in place so this will be adhered to indoors and outdoors. Guests will need to wear face masks in public areas except when eating and drinking. The Scottish and Welsh governments are reviewing their guidance in August and we will adapt our measures in line with any updated guidance at this time.

As a temporary measure, we will not be servicing rooms during a stay. Extra tea, coffee, milk, and toiletries will be made available on request for all guests. It is recommended that guests bring their own toiletries for the duration of their stay. We will though be increasing the frequency of cleaning in our public areas providing particular attention to frequently touched items including door handles and handrails.

For now, there is no cream tea on arrival day. Menus for the week will be available in your room on arrival. A self-service breakfast will be served from 7.45am – 9am. Picnic lunches will now be pre-ordered the night before from an order form in the room. Evening meals will be table service. A dinner order form will be available in each room for completion. Dinner is served at either 7.15pm or 7.30pm. Please check at the house for details. The bar will be open. We will be offering a table service but guests can also come to the bar to order (depending on local restrictions).

At this time the evening social programme has been replaced by individual or small group walks talks which allow guests to talk through the following day’s walk options with leaders. All of our swimming pools have opened as planned, except for Brecon and Glen Coe, which have delayed pool re-openings. Swimming pools are being operated in line with guidance provided by Swim England.

For more information and to see all the steps taken, visit our page on how house stays will be adapted.

Rooms

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

Stay in the smartly presented rooms in the main house or in one of the handful of bedrooms in the converted coach house close by. With 23 rooms, Dolserau Hall has plenty of space and there’s a range of Good and Better Rooms to choose from. Enjoy the extra space of Room 1 and soak luxuriously in the tub that comes with the room, or watch the light change outside from the comfort and privacy of the sofa in front of the large picture window in Room 5.

All ‘Good’ rooms are ensuite and furnished to a high standard. There are also several ‘Better’ Rooms that are either larger or have a desirable view, a more luxurious mattress and larger television – 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 garden, lounge bar, library and board games to borrow

After a day rambling over the slopes of the Rhinogs or summiting a cracking peak, come back to the house and its specially tailored walkers’ facilities. Wander through the Coach House garden and admire the far-reaching views. Settle into the lounge bar and sink into the comfy leather sofas here. Grab a book or a board game and make yourself comfortable.

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 Dolserau Hall is varied and tasty and has a strong emphasis on ingredients from the area and seasonal produce. Once a week the dining room hosts a Local Food Night, when, over a sociable evening, you might try a six-course feast of regional flavours. Look out for highlights including Cawl Cennin, a leek and potato broth, smoked haddock with Welsh rarebit and lava bread and Welsh lamb Wellington. If you’ve space, tuck into a slice of Monmouth Pudding, a great old-fashioned desert of breadcrumbs, fruit, cream and meringue

Accessibility

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

10666_0048 - Dolserau Hall - Exterior

Getting to Dolserau Hall

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

All holidays are subject to availability. Prices are subject to change.
Prices based on two people sharing. Supplements may apply.
Non-member fee: £30 per person.

Holiday Prices

Date (Start - End) Nights Itinerary Price Status Trip Notes Book
2021
30 Jul - 06 Aug 2021
7 Tread Lightly £885 £855 Save £30 Per Person Trip Notes Book Now
15 Oct - 22 Oct 2021
7 Tread Lightly £799 Unavailable to Book Unavailable Trip Notes
Duration:
7 nights
Type:
Tread Lightly
Walking Grade:
2 & 3

7 nights from £885pp £855pp

...or call 020 3974 8865

For group bookings of 10+ people click here

Add to wishlist Added to wishlist