Walking with Sightseeing at Selworthy

Exmoor

Code: SLWOD

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Activity types:

  • Coastal
  • Hills & moorland
  • History
  • Rural peace

Level

  • Easy
More information

Difficulty indicator

Difficulty is measured on many factors such as distance, ascent/descent, terrain, weather and more. There's no magic formula, but from our experience we use yellow for easy, orange for medium and red for hard. Challenger holidays require a high level of fitness and stamina.

More about difficulty levels

From £279.00 - 3 to 7 nights

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Prices are per person

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Room 2:
Room 3:

Holiday overview

Enjoy full days exploring the Exmoor area, combining the perfect mix of guided walks with sightseeing.

Holiday highlights

  • Glimpse wild Exmoor ponies as you walk to the famous clapper bridge at Tarr Steps
  • Visit Victorian Knightshayes Court with its impressive gardens
  • Explore medieval Dunster Castle, and Coleridge Cottage
  • Walk from Lynmouth to Watersmeet, and take the cliff railway to Lynton

Great reasons to join us

  • Great value: all prices include Full Board en-suite accommodation, the services of an experienced HF Holidays’ guide, all transport to and from the walks and sightseeing, and light-hearted evening activities
  • Walks & Visits: enjoy carefully selected guided walks and sightseeing visits with a knowledgeable leader
  • Accommodation: stay at National Trust owned 4-star Holnicote House, with its superb grounds and outdoor swimming pool
  • Sociability: we pride ourselves on the social atmosphere of our holidays - walk together, eat together and relax together

Accommodation

As a historic National Trust property, Holnicote House is full of charm and character. Located on the   4-star Visit Britain Guest Accommodationextensive Holnicote Estate, at the foot of Exmoor, it is well suited to a relaxing holiday.

 

Bedrooms

Holnicote House has 32 newly refurbished bedrooms. Some are located in the main house, with others in the thatched cottages, called Butlers and Guns, in the grounds.

Our classic bedrooms offer comfortable accommodation and an en-suite bathroom with bath or shower. They also have TV, hairdryer, and tea and coffee making facilities. Single rooms are available for an extra £8 per night.

You can enjoy extra space or exceptional views plus additional facilities including a towelling robe and complimentary slippers when you upgrade to a premium bedroom. Premium rooms are available at just £5 extra per person per night.    

If you are travelling with your family, we have a selection of 3 and 4-bedded family bedrooms. These have all the facilities of our classic rooms plus full sized twin or double beds for adults and bunk beds or occasional beds for children.

 

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Facilities

All our Country Houses are tailored to the needs of walkers and outdoor enthusiasts and have excellent boot and drying rooms.

There are two comfortable lounges, dining room and an attractive bar. The ballroom is a flexible space which can be used for dancing or for a variety of leisure activity holidays. Free WiFi is available in some public rooms. There is also a range of board games and books.

The heated outdoor swimming pool (open May to September) is always popular with our guests. There's also a croquet lawn.

The gardens are particularly extensive and form part of the wider Holnicote Estate.

 

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Food

All holidays at our Country Houses are Full Board with all meals included, from dinner on arrival to breakfast on the day of your departure.

Visit England Breakfast Award logo at HF HolidaysStart your day with our extensive breakfast. Choose from a wide selection on the cold buffet and/or a full cooked breakfast. Maybe enjoy a lighter option of fruit and yoghurt followed by scrambled egg, go for porridge followed by a full English breakfast, or select something in between.

Choose from our famous self-select picnic lunches - everything you need to keep you going on a day outdoors. Your own choice of sandwiches is prepared to order, and you can add crisps and snacks, fruit, nuts, chocolate bars, sweets and biscuits as you wish.     

Our house-based Leisure Activities include an in-house lunch (generally soup, sandwiches etc).   

The relaxed dinner is a highlight of any stay at our Country Houses. With tables seating up to 10 and no seating plan, it offers a great opportunity to get to know your fellow guests. There is always a choice of dishes for every course, featuring good British cooking and often local specialities. A vegetarian option is always available.

All our Country Houses have a well-stocked bar serving local beers, wine and spirits.

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Evening

Guided Walking: enjoy a glass of wine or local beer in the bar before a talk about the next day's walks. After dinner there will be an activity or entertainment which you will be welcome to join. These vary from week to week but could include a talk on local wildlife from a local speaker or a team quiz. Alternatively if you prefer, feel free to just relax in our lounge or bar.

Leisure Activities: many of our Leisure Activities holidays continue into the evening with programmed sessions. Other holidays will have the evenings free, and you will be welcome to join in other social activities that may be happening in the house.

Family holidays: our activity leaders are on hand to organise children’s activities and games for younger children before dinner. These could include rounders, outdoor games, or crafts. After dinner there are further activities for the whole family.

Self-Guided Walking: there may be evening social activities happening in the house during your holiday, and you will be most welcome to join in. However, not all self-guided holidays will have evening activities available – if these are important to you, please check before booking.

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Accessibility

Arrival & car parking facilities

  • On arrival there is a level driveway with two speed bumps with ample parking on both sides of the drive
  • The surface of the driveway is gravel
  • It is possible to load and unload cars directly at the front door
  • There is 1 dedicated disabled parking bays
  • Assistance can be provided with luggage 

Main entrance & reception

  • The main entrance has 1 step (9cm high) and is 123cm wide. There is a ramp available on request for the side entrance
  • The front door is locked during the night, but access is available via the boot room (with a digital door code)
  • If accessing from the boot room, there are 2 steps up to the ground floor. The steps are 20cm and 34cm high and both are 133cm wide. Wooden handrail on both sides of the steps
  • After entering the house, all the facilities are available without encountering any further steps, with the exception of the boot room (details above) or the ballroom, which is accessed via 3 steps. These steps are each 15cm high, 36cm deep and 125cm wide. Wooden handrail on both sides of the steps
  • There are several floor coverings on the ground floor, mainly carpet, but also some nonslip safety flooring and original quarry tiles by the tradesman's entrance (the side entrance). The ballroom has wooden block flooring 

Public areas - hall, stairs, landing, corridors etc

  • All internal doors are 66cm wide (except where separate measurements have been given)
  • The minimum width of the corridor is 126cm
  • The floor surface on the stairs and upstairs corridors is short pile carpet. Ground floor corridor is non-slip flooring 

Public areas - lounges

  • The ground floor has 2 lounges, a dining room, a bar and a ballroom and a boot room
  • The larger lounge (4.6m x 12m) is carpeted with plenty of seating (bucket chairs are 45cm high, settees 43cm high and the tables are 68cm in diameter, 72cm high). Door width 92cm
  • Smaller lounge (8m x 7.5m). Bucket chairs are 47cm high, settees 37cm high and number of tables 39-48cm high. Door width 1m
  • The ballroom (8m x 4.9m) is and has wood block flooring
  • All furniture is easily movable 

Public WCs

  • There are 2 unisex toilets on the ground floor opposite the bar
  • Minimum door width 80cm. Toilet heights are 40cm and 42cm
  • Approximate room sizes are 1.22m x 1.37m for the first toilet and 1.22m x 2.57m for the second one 

Dining room & bar

  • The carpeted dining room (6m x 10m including Roman end) is situated on the ground floor with level access. Door width 94cm
  • 6 round tables, each seating maximum of 10 guests
  • Tables have an under space of 73cm high by 150cm wide. Each table has 4 legs 20cm away from the round edge
  • The chairs do not have arms. The seats are 46cm high
  • Waitress service
  • Special diets catered for, but should be advised pre or on arrival
  • The carpeted bar area is 3.6m x 4.9m. Door width 66cm. Built-in benches (47cm high) around the room seat 13 people. Various stools (51cm-75 cm high) and 5 circular tables (72cm high) 

Bedrooms

There are no dedicated disabled rooms, the room best suited for anyone with restricted mobility is room 22.

Other bedrooms

  • The rest of the rooms are a mixture of single, twin and double rooms, located either in the main house, Guns Cottage, Butlers Cottage or Chalets. In the main house the bedrooms are on the first and second floor only
  • The staircase is 106cm wide. There are 15 steps to the first floor landing (bedrooms 6 to 21), with another 3 steps to bedrooms 1 to 5. Each step is 17cm high, 29cm deep and 106cm wide
  • Most of the bedrooms are en-suite with shower. Some rooms only have a wash basin, there are public bathrooms available 

Outdoor facilities

  • Large extensive gardens, which include orchard, herb garden, flower borders and trellis enclosed pool area
  • A bench, garden chairs and loungers are available
  • Garden is fairly level, with tarmac pathways. Easy access
  • The outdoor swimming pool is available from May to September. The pool size is 12m x 6m plus the Roman end which has 5cm x 5cm deep steps
  • The pool does not have an attendant and is currently not equipped with aids to assist entry
  • Within the pool area there is an alarm, first aid post, rescue hook and a life buoy 

Additional information

  • Fire procedure is displayed in each room and explained to guests on arrival. Guests requiring assistance at an evacuation are identified at this time and door hanger cards are issued
  • Mobile phone reception is generally good from the main building
  • Assistance dogs accompanying visually or hearing impaired guests are welcome; dogs must be kept on a lead or harness at all times
  • Information can be provided in large print
  • Staff have received disability awareness training
  • Special diets can be catered for. Specialist food can be obtained with prior notice
  • Fridge for medication can be supplied

Itinerary

Friday: arrival day

Saturday: Selworthy, Hurlstone Point and Bossington

We walk from Holnicote House to Allerford to see the much photographed pack-horse bridge, before taking to the woods and visiting a chapel of ease and a falconry centre, both at Lynch. We continue to the village of Bossington before climbing to a historic vantage point with spectacular views across the Bristol Channel to Wales. After a short climb, we arrive at Hurlstone Point before turning back towards Holnicote House. 4 miles (6.5km) with minimal ascent.

Sunday: The Quantocks and Coleridge Cottage

From high on the Quantock Hills we're treated to fantastic views and glorious scenery as we walk in the footsteps of the poets - Coleridge and Wordsworth. Our route takes us through the landscapes that inspired them and down to Coleridge's home at Nether Stowey - Coleridge Cottage. 4.5 miles (7.5km) with 500 feet (160m) of ascent and 1350 feet (400m) of descent.

Monday: free day

Tuesday: Historic Dunster

Today’s walk gives us the whole day to explore historic Dunster and the beautiful countryside surrounding it.  We enjoy a circular route taking us through Dunster's deer park and on a circuit passing below Bats Castle and Withycombe Gate, returning to Dunster giving us plenty of time to discover the history and charm of this medieval wool town. Options include visiting Dunster's impressive castle, the Yarn Market, St Peter’s Church, the Doll Museum and a working water mill; or stretching your legs further with a woodland walk before treating yourself to a visit to one of the many tea shops. 5 miles (7.5km) with 950 feet (300m) of ascent.

Wednesday: Tarr Steps and Kinghtshayes

From Withypool we follow the Two Moors Way and the River Barle, passing through the nature reserve and to the much photographed clapper bridge at Tarr Steps. In the afternoon we visit the William Burges Victorian masterpiece of Knightshayes Court. Owned by the National Trust, this unique country house is set in an impressive estate. We've time to explore the house, its beautiful gardens and parkland. 4.5 miles (7km) with 750 feet (220m) of ascent.

Thursday: Lynmouth and Lynmouth, and Valley of Rocks

Starting from Barna Barrow, we follow the South West Coast Path to Watersmeet House, a Victorian fishing lodge now owned by the National Trust. We walk downstream beside the East Lyn River to Lynmouth, where we've time to explore the town. Options include stretching your legs further with a walk out to Valley of Rocks, visiting exhibitions on the great flood of 1952, riding the funicular cliff railway up to Lynton or relaxing with an ice cream and enjoying the scenery. 3.5 miles (5.5km) with 500 feet (160m) of ascent and 1,400 feet (440m) of descent.

  • Walks are up to 5 miles (7.5km) with up to 950 feet (300m) of ascent. There are occasionally rough paths.
  • Each holiday visits a selection of museums, historic buildings and attractions, whose entrance is optional. Please allow between £20 and £40 for admissions, less if you bring your National Trust card.
  • The seven night holiday has a free day on the Monday for you to explore independently.

Local area

During your stay at Holnicote House you may enjoy visiting the following places of interest, either in your free time, or on your journey to and from Selworthy:

Selworthy Village
Less than a mile from Holnicote House is Selworthy village. At first glance the thatched cottages seem typical of many ancient settlements in this area. However, Selworthy is not as old as it looks, having been rebuilt in 1828 by Sir Thomas Acland. Sir Thomas was a philanthropist and designed the 'model' village himself to provide housing for the aged and infirm of the estate. He used traditional designs and materials to create a deliberately old-fashioned village. 

West Somerset Railway
Travel on Britain’s longest steam railway from Minehead to Bishops Lydyard. Now lovingly restored by volunteers, the line recreates a classic Great Western Railway branch line with steam trains operating daily from April to October. Minehead station is 10 minutes' drive from Selworthy, or can be reached on the number 300 bus. www.west-somerset-railway.co.uk

Lynton & Lynmouth
The quaint Victorian town of Lynton sits high on a hill, overlooking the coast and Lynmouth harbour. The two settlements are connected by the historic cliff railway. The short walk from Lynton to the Valley of Rocks is highly recommended.

Coleridge Cottage
The poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834) and his wife Sara lived in the village of Nether Stowey, about 45 minutes' drive from Selworthy, from 1796 to 1799. In 1909 it was acquired by the National Trust, and later restored and opened to the public. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/coleridge-cottage

Arlington Court
Arlington Court, about an hour's drive away near Barnstaple is a fine Regency house set in an extensive estate. The grounds include a formal Victorian garden whilst the stables house the National Trust’s carriage collection of over fifty horse-drawn vehicles. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/arlington-court

Hestercombe Gardens
Hestercombe Gardens, around an hour's drive away near Taunton, were constructed in three periods - a landscape garden from the 1750s, a Victorian terrace and shrubbery from the 1870s, and Edwardian gardens of 1904-1908 designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens and Gertrude Jekyll. www.hestercombe.com

Travel

Holnicote House, Selworthy, Minehead, Somerset TA24 8TJ

By train: The nearest railway station is at Taunton. For train times and general rail enquiries visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or call 03457 484950 (from outside the UK call +44 20 7278 5240).

By taxi: The 29 mile journey from Taunton railway station takes approximately 50 minutes (please allow up to an extra 30 minutes for a weekday transfer). Taxis cost approx £56 per taxi. Every year we negotiate a pre-booked rate for these journeys. Details of our current recommended taxi company and rates will be sent to you with your booking. We recommend pre-booking your taxi and the taxi company will arrange shared taxis wherever possible. The return taxi journey can be arranged on your behalf by the Holnicote House Manager.

By bus: There are buses which will take you from Taunton to Minehead, and then change to continue onto Selworthy Turn which is the bus stop at the bottom of the drive of Holnicote House. Alternatively pre-book a taxi from Minehead; the 4½ mile journey will cost you approx £10 from our recommended taxi provider.

By car: From Bridgewater take the A39 though the southern outskirts of Minehead towards Porlock. Holnicote House is on the left about 4½ miles out of Minehead, and about ¾ mile after the signpost to Luccombe (do not follow the signs to Selworthy). After the Selworthy Village sign look out for our sign 500 yards further on, on the left. Free car parking is available in the grounds.

To help you plan your journey, use www.traveline.info

Reviews

Date & Rating Customer Review HF Holidays says
9 Aug 2016, 10:16 a.m.

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Everything was done to my satisfaction and I couldn't fault it.

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I loved the food, the accommodation and the helpfulness of both the staff and the guides.
1 Aug 2016, 11:48 a.m.

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as always, a marvellous break.

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The accommodation was uncomfortable, but the new design of walks (under 4 miles a day, and the inclusion of many interesting places, offset that.) Food as always impeccable.
1 Aug 2016, 6:46 a.m.

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Very well organised

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Went on a Discovery Walk which I thoroughly enjoyed
1 Aug 2016, 6:21 a.m.

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I an the HF leader who was guiding this holiday so I cannot understand why I have received this email.

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My guest does not have a computer. I received a card from the group thanking me for a great holiday which they all enjoyed.
2 Jul 2015, 5:21 p.m.

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Excellent food, centre, though feel more thought needed on grading walks for Discovery Walk weeks.

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Discovery Walk on one day was just around Arlington Crt NT grounds - this is not a proper ramble. Another day we had too much time in Lynmouth, would prefer more walking and more guidelines on when to meet up after lunch.
2 Jul 2015, 3:18 p.m.

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I usually travel on my own and do resent paying extra for a single room that is usually quite inferior to what I would get travelling as a couple. In particular having a small single bed
But everything else is excellent

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I wasnt on the guided wallong holiday so cant comment on that, but I was on the discovery walk holiday which was paced about right given the remarkably differing walking abilities of the group. Some of the walks - eg at Arlington - were a bit dull and in hindsight could have been dropped to spend more time visiting the house. There wasnt enough time allowed for walk and house visit
29 Aug 2014, 7:19 p.m.

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Excellent company and service.

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Excellent holiday with well planned, enjoyable walks, well run HF house, good food, and good company.
28 Aug 2014, 6:50 p.m.

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Well thought out program with some flexibility

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Great staff in this location
25 Aug 2014, 8:57 a.m.

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It was my first Discovery Walking and suited my present walking ability and interests admirably. HF holidays are ALWAYS great fun and excellent value.

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Well planned and a lovely destination.

Dates & Prices

Date Description Nights Brochure price Buy today for Book
7 Apr 2017 SLWOD - Guided Walking with Sightseeing - Selworthy 3 £339.00 £279.00 OFFER - £60 off pp Book Now
10 Apr 2017 SLWOD - Guided Walking with Sightseeing - Selworthy 4 £459.00 £399.00 OFFER - £60 off pp Book Now
23 Jun 2017 SLWOD - Guided Walking with Sightseeing - Selworthy 3 £359.00 £309.00 OFFER - £50 off pp Book Now
23 Jun 2017 SLWOD - Guided Walking with Sightseeing - Selworthy 7 £819.00 £699.00 TOP OFFER - £120 off pp Book Now
26 Jun 2017 SLWOD - Guided Walking with Sightseeing - Selworthy 4 £499.00 £429.00 OFFER - £70 off pp Book Now
15 Sep 2017 SLWOD - Guided Walking with Sightseeing - Selworthy 3 £359.00 £309.00 OFFER - £50 off pp Book Now
18 Sep 2017 SLWOD - Guided Walking with Sightseeing - Selworthy 4 £499.00 £439.00 OFFER - £60 off pp Book Now

Prices are per person

Information

  • Standard single room: (2016) £8 per night; (2017) no supplement
  • Premium single room: £15 per night (2017 only)
  • Premium twin/double room: (2016) £5 per person per night; (2017) £10 per person per night
  • Non-member associate fee: (2016) £5 per person; (2017) £10 per person