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The new name for Ramblers Walking Holidays & Adagio. A new name, a new world of possibilities! Learn more about us

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North Devon Gardens

Explore beautiful North Devon. A memorable holiday amongst some of the finest gardens in the south west of England

  • England

  • 5 nights
  • Half Board
  • Coast & Islands

    Wildlife & Nature

  • Apr

    Jun

    Aug

    Sep

Leisurely

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Tour codes: 50010

Book now from £799

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Walking grade

Grade 2

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Adagio Collection

The perfect blend of guided shorter walks, sightseeing trips, and quality accommodation for a more leisurely way to discover the world.

Overview

Holiday Highlights

  • Rosemoor Gardens, a jewel in the crown of the R.H.S.
  • Clovelly. They coined the term ‘chocolate box’ to describe this picturesque village
  • Hartland Abbey. This popular film set might seem familiar.
  • Tapeley. Another contrastingly beautiful garden.
  • Northam Burrows. Lovely coastal walking and views

The warm Atlantic winds and the sunshine make North Devon ann ideal spot for some serious gardening. On this holiday we visit three classic examples and still have time to enjoy the towns, villages and coastal walks so characteristic of the area.

We are based in the picturesque riverside town of Bideford. Our hotel looks across the River Torridge to the main town on the other bank. We will take some time to explore the town and the historic quay, lined with charming cafes, independent shops, and craft stalls.

Just a short bus ride from Bideford lies the picturesque village of Westward Ho! This coastal haven boasts a golden sandy beach that stretches for miles. After a quick look around, we will follow the coast north to Northam Burrows and cut across to Appledore.  Amongst other attractions the local ice cream is spectacular.

For nature enthusiasts, a visit to Rosemoor Gardens is an absolute must. Managed by the Royal Horticultural Society, these gardens boast a diverse array of plants, including enchanting roses, vibrant borders, and tranquil woodland areas. Meander along the pathways, breathe in the fragrant blooms, and find serenity amidst the beauty of nature.

Tapeley offers a unique combination of stunning gardens, impressive architecture, and an eco-friendly approach. The beautifully manicured gardens, adorned with sculptures and exotic plants, provide a perfect setting for a leisurely stroll. Additionally, the estate's commitment to sustainability and organic farming practices adds an educational and environmentally conscious dimension to your visit.

For a final hurrah we have a trip out to the charming village of Clovelly. With its traffic-free cobbled streets and traditional whitewashed cottages, Clovelly feels like a living postcard. Venturing further into the rugged beauty of North Devon we explore Hartland. The coast is known for its dramatic cliffs, hidden coves, and striking rock formations Hartland Abbey, a historic house with beautiful gardens, offers a piece of tranquillity.


  • En suite accommodation in our hotel
  • Half board arrangements with breakfast and dinner in the hotel
  • The services of an Adagio tour leader throughout
  • All transport, public and private, to complete the itinerary
  • Entrances to all sites mentioned in the itinerary
  • All tips to service providers
  • Entrance fees (unless otherwise specified)
  • Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Discretionary tips
  • Optional excursions
  • Travel Insurance

Holiday Information

Click the button below for a detailed Holiday Information Sheet containing all the particulars about this trip.

NOTE: Itineraries and Holiday Information Sheets can vary by a specific date chosen

View Holiday Information Sheet

Itinerary & Travel

Itinerary Details

Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised programme, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.

Your Itinerary

Day 1

Bideford

Meals

Dinner

Accommodation

Arrival at the Royal Hotel in Bideford. Check in is from 15:00. Your Adagio leader will meet you in the bar before dinner. Dinner is in the hotel tonight and every night of the holiday.

Day 2

Northam Burrows

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    3 hours

  • Distance

    5 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    50m

After breakfast in the hotel we have time for an introduction to Bideford before catching the local bus to Westward Ho!, the only town in Britain with an exclamation mark in its name. After a quick look around the town, we will walk along the beach to Northam Burrows with stunning views north to Croyde and Braunton. Look out for sea birds and flowers in season. The walk loops across the Burrows and arrives in Appledore where your leader will introduce to the delights of Hockings ice cream.  We have time to look around before taking the bus back to Bideford and the hotel.

Day 3

Rosemoor Gardens

Meals

Breakfast and Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    1 hours

  • Distance

    1 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    50m

For the aficionado or beginner, Rosemoor Gardens are a treat. Run by the Royal Horticultural Society, the gardens are hugely diverse and full of interest. Regardless of the time of visit you can enjoy ever changing plantscapes, secret corners, trees shrubs, flowers birdlife and an enticing café. We have plenty of time. We intend to get to the gardens by public bus to Great Torrington and then a short walk to the garden entrance.

Day 4

The Tarka Trail, & Tapeley Park

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    3 hours

  • Distance

    5 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    50m

Today we walk the Tarka Trail which passes the back of the hotel. Stopping first to take a quick look at Bideford's restored former railway station we take a gentle walk north on the old track bed. It hugs the banks of the River Torridge and is almost completely level. After a while we will arrive at the village of Instowe. After chance to explore Instowe and have coffee, we can take transport down to Tapeley Gardens, another garden of considerable note, it is also a popular film location. Finally we have transport back to the hotel.

Day 5

Clovelly & Hartland Abbey

Meals

Breakfast and Dinner

Accommodation

Exploring further afield we have private hire transport to take us firstly to Clovelly, a picture perfect fishing village if ever there was one. The road through the village down to the quay is steep but well worth the walk. We then continue to Hartland Abbey, another engaging garden but this time with the added interest we can visit the abbey dating back to 1157. There is also a walk down to the coast offering stunning views along to Hartland Quay and this wild section of the north Devon coast.

Day 6

Final day

Meals

Breakfast

After breakfast we will say our goodbyes and check out of the hotel. Check is before 11:00.

Departure dates for your selected tour

27th Apr 2024 - 2nd May 2024 (5 Nights)

2nd Jun 2024 - 7th Jun 2024 (5 Nights)

4th Aug 2024 - 9th Aug 2024 (5 Nights)

1st Sep 2024 - 6th Sep 2024 (5 Nights)

Travel Details

By Road: From the M5 (Junction 27), take the A361 to Barnstaple then the A39 and A386 to Bideford. The hotel is at the eastern end of the town bridge.

Parking: The hotel car park has two car parks. All hotel guests can park for free. 

By Rail: The nearest train station is in Barnstaple, approximately 10 miles from the hotel. There are taxis at the station.

By Air: The nearest airport is at Exeter, 60 miles from Bideford.

Route planning to and from Bideford: 

The AA and RAC both offer free and detailed on-line route planning facilities on their websites which may help you find the hotel. 

An excellent website to assist in your travel plans is Rome2Rio.

Accommodation

Accommodation information

Below is the accommodation featured on this holiday across all departure dates. Please refer to the Itinerary for more detail about each night's accommodation for each departure date.

The Royal Hotel

The historic Royal Hotel has first-class food, friendly service and a great location for North Devon's sights, including the picturesque Tarka Trail for walkers. The Royal Hotel is at the eastern end of ancient Bideford Bridge and close to public transport. It is easy to explore the centre of Bideford and the quayside. The hotel is associated with the 17th-century Court of Assize and the author, Sir Charles Kingsley, who wrote some of 'The Water Babies' and 'Westward Ho!' whilst staying here. At The Royal Hotel, rooms are clean, comfortable with ensuite facilities including hairdryers. There is free wi-fi throughout the hotel. One of the hotel's famous features is the oak-panelled Kingsley Room, with its ornate, sculpted ceiling.

Trip Information

All the details you need

Holiday Grade

This level mixes active sightseeing with shorter, city or countryside walks. Trips are not aimed at seasoned walkers, but you should be confident in managing walks of around 3miles at a leisurely pace with a few ups and downs. Where in more mountainous areas we use transport to access higher ground with ease. 

Usual daily walks - Distance: 3 miles; Ascent/Descent 150-200m; Terrain: good paths and tracks; Time: Short or Half Day exploration. 

The above statistics are generalisations of a day’s keys walk, it does not include distance covered during general sightseeing or  daily activity. Detailed information of the daily walking requirements are specified in the specific holidays ‘Daily Itinerary" .

Walks & Excursions

We use a mix of privately hired vehicles, taxis, and public transport which gives us some flexibility in our itinerary. We have a wonderful programme of walking, sightseeing and visits planned to let you fully experience the area along with opportunities to relax at our wonderful hotel and enjoy your surroundings.

Local Costs

Holiday Budgeting

As you plan your holiday budget, it's essential to account for expenses such as drinks, meals not covered in the holiday price, entrance fees not included, optional local excursions, and any souvenirs or additional services like laundry. For a rough estimate, budgeting around £10-£20 per person per day for lunches and drinks is a helpful guideline.

Local Transport Costs

In the holiday cost, we've included all local transport expenses related to the advertised activity program for your convenience. If there are additional visits or excursions to enrich your experience, you can choose to participate and cover the costs locally. Depending on the itinerary, local transport may involve a mix of private hire coaches, taxis, local buses, and ferries.

Tipping

In your holiday price, we've included tipping for our local suppliers, covering hotel and restaurant staff, local guides, and drivers. Should you wish to make an extra contribution for a specific service, this should be given directly to the recipient at your discretion.

Your Group

Your Leader

Your tour leader plays a crucial role in enhancing your holiday experience, and they share your passion for exploring the world on foot. In addition to being resourceful and organized they are also well-travelled and deeply enthusiastic about showing you new destinations. Your tour leader takes care of all the local, ensuring you can fully enjoy your holiday without worrying about the logistics. While leading group holidays, they always keep in mind that each group is composed of individuals. Each tour leader brings their unique style, talents, and professional background to the table. Rest assured, they are all trained, qualified, experienced, and dedicated to making your holiday as enjoyable, interesting, and inspiring as possible. Remember, your leader, while on holiday, is your first port of call for any issues, ensuring a smooth and worry-free experience for you.

Leaders Evening Briefing

Each evening, your tour leader will meet with you to review the programme for the next day. This is your chance to discuss details and ensure that the planned activities align with your walking ability. If you have any concerns about clothing or equipment, feel free to bring them up during this discussion. If, for any reason, you prefer not to participate in the organized group program, please inform your leader. Your preferences are important, and your leader is there to make sure your experience aligns with your expectations.

Group Size

We believe that the best things come in small packages, and our Adagio holidays prove just that. We limit our groups to a maximum of 18 persons, plus the Adagio Leader, so that everyone has the opportunity to mix, share their love of travel and return home with new friendships. Small groups also have less detrimental local impact, allows us to use public transport on some days, eat at small local restaurants and, we believe, offers a better experience.

Travel Plans

Getting to your Holiday

By Road: From the M5 (Junction 27), take the A361 to Barnstaple then the A39 and A386 to Bideford. The hotel is at the eastern end of the town bridge.

Parking: The hotel car park has two car parks. All hotel guests can park for free. 

By Rail: The nearest train station is in Barnstaple, approximately 10 miles from the hotel. There are taxis at the station.

By Air: The nearest airport is at Exeter, 60 miles from Bideford.

Route planning to and from Bideford: 

The AA and RAC both offer free and detailed on-line route planning facilities on their websites which may help you find the hotel. 

An excellent website to assist in your travel plans is Rome2Rio.

Personal Details Check

To ensure the accurate administration of your holiday arrangements, kindly verify that the personal details we have for you are current and correct. Confirm that you've given us all the necessary information for securing your travel and accommodation. Please review your passport details, date of birth, and any other pertinent information crucial for the management of your holiday.

Additionally, please make us aware of any dietary allergies or intolerances you may have. Your well-being is important to us, and this information will help us make appropriate arrangements for your meals during the trip.

You can access and update the provided information or add missing details through the "Manage My Booking" feature on our website at www.rambleworldwide.co.uk. Alternatively, reach out to our Sales and Reservations team at +44 (0)1707 331133. Upon receiving your booking confirmation, promptly check the details. Your cooperation ensures a seamless and enjoyable holiday experience.

Meals

Your holiday is on a half board basis with all meals taken in the hotel. 

The hotel offers a wide range of breakfast dishes including (obviously!) the full Devon Breakfast. Please see the breakfast menu on the hotel website for further information. Dinners are taken in the hotel and will consist of two courses, main and dessert. Each night there will be a choice of three mains including a vegetarian option. various dietary requirements can be catered for.

Lunches aren't included to offer flexibility and your group leader will advise if you should have a picnic or if there will be cafe stops available on the day.

Footwear & Kit List

Footwear

Comfortable, broken in, walking boots or shoes with a good sole are recommended for this holiday. Walking shoes or other comfortable footwear will be suitable for sightseeing days.

General Kit List

Outdoor activities are always safer and more enjoyable if you are prepared.

If you have not travelled with us before the following list might be of use:

  • Waterproof jacket (Goretex or similar) and trousers
  • Fleece or jumper
  • Sun hat, sunglasses, lip salve and sun screen
  • Swimwear (if appropriate)
  • Day sack (this should be able to carry all you would need for the days activity)
  • Water bottle - at least 1 litre capacity
  • Basic first aid kit
  • Reusable Lunchbox
  • Walking poles (should you find them useful)

This list is not exhaustive and every traveller is different and may have their own preference.

Water To Go

Opting for filtered water from a reusable bottle with its built-in water filter, like the Water-to-go bottle available at www.watertogo.eu, is a sustainable alternative to single-use sealed water bottles. Simply refill it from any water source and contribute to saving the environment from disposable plastic bottles.

Exciting news: Water-to-go has introduced two new bottles to their collection. The Active bottle is designed to fit bike water bottle holders, and the Sugarcane bottle is an even more planet-friendly option. Crafted from fibrous cane, a by-product of liquid extraction, it undergoes a process to create plant-based plastic. Explore the details on the Water-to-Go website for this innovative new range.

As a token of appreciation for your commitment to the environment, we've secured an exclusive 15% discount with Water-to-Go for you. Visit www.watertogo.eu and use the code RWH17 during your order.                        

Note: If you're booked on a long-haul holiday departing after November 1, 2023, you'll receive a complimentary Water to Go bottle, sent to your home address 2 or 3 weeks before your holiday. Thank you for being a part of our sustainable journey!

Travel Document Checklist

To ensure your holiday gets off to a good start, please make sure that you bring the following documents and information with you:

  • Passport (make sure it's yours and valid)
  • Your travel tickets or e-ticket itinerary
  • Any visa or electronic travel authorisation (if required)
  • Holiday currency
  • Credit or debit cards (and separate details of who to call if lost)
  • Car parking ticket and car park directions (if prebooked)
  • Coach or rail travel tickets (if prebooked)
  • Your holiday Booking Confirmation document
  • Your travel insurance details
  • Alternative form of identification (such as a driving licence)
  • Photocopy of the personal details pages of your passport
  • A valid European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) if relevant
  • Details of any medical condition or allergy your holiday leader should know about

Maps & Guidebooks

The Map Shop

If you cannot find the maps or books locally we recommend:

The Map Shop
5 High Street
Upton upon Severn, Worcs
WR8 0HJ
England

Tel: 01684 593 146
Website: www.themapshop.co.uk
E-mail: themapshop@btinternet.com

If you key many of the local places mentioned in this holiday fact sheet into YouTube, you will find a vast array of spectacular footage of the area.

Staying Healthy on Holiday

Further Health Advice

For further advice please visit:

You might wish to take a small bottle of antibacterial hand gel with you for times when you're unable to wash your hands.

Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance

It’s a condition of booking that you obtain adequate travel insurance, from a reputable provider, to undertake the holiday, including UK trips chiefly due to the cancellation element of cover.

The policy must cover the period from the date of booking to the last day of your trip and should include, as a minimum, cover for: medical expenses (including the consequences of a Covid positive test result), mountain rescue including helicopter rescue, death, repatriation, cancellation and curtailment and shall not have exclusion clauses limiting cover for the activities you will partake in on your trip, including altitudes reached in the holiday arrangement. It is your responsibility to check that your policy is adequate for the nature and destination of the holiday booked.

Once you have obtained your travel insurance, please provide us with the name of your travel insurer, the policy number and the insurer’s 24 hour emergency assistance number.

In the event that you fail to obtain suitable Travel Insurance we shall not be liable for any costs incurred or claims made against us due to your failure to comply with this term.

If travelling outside the UK you must carry proof of insurance with you and produce it if reasonably requested to do so by RWH Travel staff, tour leaders or suppliers. No refunds will be made should you be excluded from the walking programme through being uninsured or you being unable to demonstrate that you are insured.

Our house broker MPI should be considered for whom we are an affiliate and contact information is on our website and will be referred to in your booking confirmation.

If you are travelling to an EU country or Switzerland please also ensure that you have either an existing valid EU EHIC card (European Health Insurance Card) or a valid UK GHIC (Global Health Insurance Card). You can apply for a UK GHIC free of charge on the NHS website at https://services.nhsbsa.nhs.uk/cra/start.

Our Ethos

Responsible Travel

We are dedicated to promoting responsible travel practices that prioritise the well-being of both the environment and local communities. We believe in the transformative power of travel and aim to minimize our ecological footprint by selecting eco-friendly accommodations, encouraging waste reduction, and supporting sustainable transportation options where possible. Our walking tours are designed to immerse participants in the local culture, fostering meaningful connections with the communities we visit. We strive to leave a positive impact by engaging in responsible tourism activities, respecting local customs, and contributing to the preservation of natural landscapes. Through our commitment to responsible travel, we aim to create enriching experiences for our guests while actively contributing to the conservation of the destinations we explore.

Heart and Sole

We appreciate that we are in a fortunate position to be able to use our profits to help make a difference to people's lives. Heart & Sole is a venture managed by our office staff, whose aim is to reach the heart of the communities in the countries we visit. Through Heart & Sole, we hope to make more of a long term, direct impact to these communities, particularly in less developed countries where even a small amount goes a long way. 

The Ramble Worldwide Outdoor Trust

Unlike many other tour operators, we take pride in our unique approach. Ramble Worldwide channels its surplus profits back into various outdoor, walking-related, or environmental conservation projects in the UK through our own trust. When you choose us, you contribute to this impactful initiative.

The primary focus of our Trust's financial support is directed towards Britain's premier walking charity, The Ramblers. They play a crucial role in advocating the benefits and significance of walking to the British public. Additionally, our Trust invites applications for small grants from local organizations in the UK that require support for walking-oriented activities. This encompasses initiatives such as establishing footpaths and bridleways, funding for the reconstruction of bridges and refurbishing huts, and bursary funding for organisations that support individuals to enjoy the beauty of the great outdoors..

For more comprehensive details, please visit the 'About' section on our website and click on the Charitable Trust link. Your choice to travel with us goes beyond a memorable vacation; it contributes to meaningful projects that have a positive impact on our community and environment.

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