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Offa's Dyke - Central Section

The most challenging section of the entire Offa's Dyke route. We walk approximately 66 miles of the central section south from Chirk to Kington.

  • Wales

  • 7 nights
  • Half Board
  • Long Distance Paths

  • May

    Jul

    Sep

  • Average group size: 10-12

Challenging

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Walking grade

Grade 6

This is a Grade 6 challenging holiday which includes full day walks covering distances between 9.5 and 13.5 miles each day, with appreciable amounts of ascent and descent (no more than 840m). Whilst you will mainly be on paths, these may be rough, steep and loose at times. Expect to be out for 8 hours most days, though that will include your breaks. 

This holiday takes in a variety of sights along the way on this continuous trail with some challenging climbs, with rewarding views and some longer days than others. This is the most challenging section of the trail where you will reach the highest point of the Offa's Dyke Path. The average mileage covered each day is higher than our usual Grade 6 holiday, however it is fully within grade when you take into account the terrain and the maximum amounts of ascent and descent covered each day. 

See the 'Proposed Itinerary' for more information.

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Classic Collection

Thoughtfully designed, meticulously planned, carefully graded, and expertly guided walking tours and hiking holidays along well-loved and off-the-beaten-track footpaths.

Overview

Holiday Highlights

  • An historical trail following the ancient barrier built by Offa, the King of Mercia, in the 8th century to protect his kingdom from his rivals in what is now Wales.
  • Hike the most challenging section of the entire route.
  • Follow the path for 66 miles south from Chirk to the traditional town of Kington.
  • Climb the cliffs of Llanymynech Hills, ascend Beacon Ring and walk on the highest point of the trail.
  • Take in the views of Montgomery and Corndon Hill.
  • Discover rolling countryside and market towns along the way.

The Offa’s Dyke path runs for 177 miles from Prestatyn on the North Wales coast to Chepstow on the Severn Estuary. The route follows the ancient barrier which was built by Offa, the King of Mercia, in the 8th century to protect his kingdom from his rivals in what is now Wales.

You will walk each section from north to south over six days, returning each night to your comfortable hotel.

The dyke transverses hugely diverse scenery along its route. Some might prefer the views of the Clwydian Hills and the relatively modern aqueducts on the Llangollen canal that the northern section offers. Others who walk the mid-section through the Welsh Marches may consider that the more rolling countryside and appealing market towns offer a very different but equally appealing experience. However to some the southern section through the Black Mountains past the ruins of Tintern Abbey and Llanthony Priory will be the highlight. We suggest you try all three sections before deciding on your favourite. If you walk all three routes the total walking distance is about 186 miles, which is slightly longer than the official path. This is due to short walks to and from the trail. 

The Central Section 

The most challenging section of the entire Offa’s Dyke route. You’ll walk approximately 66 miles of the central section south from Chirk to the traditional English town of Kington. You will walk the cliffs of Llanymynech Hills, ascend Beacon Ring and walk on the highest point of the trail before reaching the destination at Kington.

You may wish to look at the other sections we offer; Offa's Dyke - Northern Section and Offa's Dyke - Southern Section.

  • En suite three-star hotel accommodation on a half board basis
  • All local transport required for the itinerary by private coach
  • Services of a Classic Tour Leader
  • Entrance fees (unless otherwise specified)
  • Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Lunches
  • 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

Tour Codes

78717

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

Arrival day - Montgomery

Meals

Dinner

Accommodation

Independent travel to The Dragon Hotel in Montgomery. Check in is from 3pm. Meet your tour leader at approximately 6:30pm in the hotel bar for a briefing before dinner.

Day 2

Chirk Castle to Porth-y-Waen

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    6 hours

  • Distance

    11.5 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    649/675m

Starting in the grounds of Chirk Castle, this walk takes you through varied countryside with woods, farmland and open heath plus an introduction to the type of terrain that led Offa’s Dyke to be called ‘not the longest, not the highest, but the best' long distance path. On route you will pass through the remains of the 17th  Century Oswestry Racecourse before dropping down into a quiet valley. A climb up to Moelydd Uchaf for superb 360° views before reaching our pick-up at Porth-y-Waen. 

Day 3

Porth-y-Waen to Buttington

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    6 hours

  • Distance

    12.1 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    232/270m

The start of the walk today is at Llanymynech Hill where copper ores were mined over 2000 years ago. Subsequently, its limestone was quarried for agricultural and industrial uses with production boosted hugely in the 19th century when the canal and railway were built. The site is now a nature reserve with a variety of butterflies, plants and bird life. Drop down into the village of Llanymynech for a fascinating visit to the remains of the lime kilns before picking up the trail alongside the Montgomery Canal and ending the days hike with a gentle stretch alongside the River Severn.

Day 4

Buttington to Brompton Crossroads

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    6 hours

  • Distance

    11.9 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    601/532m

Today’s walk is packed with variety as it tracks through border country. Ascend Beacon Ring, the site of an Iron Age fort, gradually over 4 miles before dropping down through glorious woodland to enter the Vale of Montgomery. From here, a relaxing walk with superb views in all directions to meet our transport at Brompton Crossroads. Time permitting, a visit to the ruins of Montgomery Castle may be possible on the homeward journey. 

Day 5

Brompton via Churchtown to Newcastle

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    5.5 hours

  • Distance

    7.8 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    772/705m

Today's walk passes through lush rolling countryside and the route becomes hilly as we traverse a series of river valleys flowing across our path. You will cross the border between England and Wales many times today and you'll be walking on top of the Dyke itself. The highlight of the afternoon is reaching the official half-way point of the whole Offa’s Dyke Trail.

Day 6

Newcastle to Knighton

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    6 hours

  • Distance

    10.1 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    821/678m

Leaving the small village of Newcastle, this walk is made up of fairly gentle hills. A steady climb brings you to the top of Llanfair Hill, the highest point on Offa’s Dyke. Although a hilly walk, there are excellent views before dropping down into Knighton. After a short rest, climb back out of Knighton and over the local golf course to meet with the coach. There should be time to return to Knighton for refreshments before leaving for the hotel.

Day 7

Knighton to Kington

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    5 hours

  • Distance

    10.8 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    619/833m

Leaving an area overlooking the small town of Knighton, this walk is made up of fairly gentle hills, finishing in Kington. Offa’s Dyke is your constant companion today. You will see some of the best examples of the whole route of the dyke in today’s section. Although hilly, the final stretch of the walk is relatively straightforward with excellent views. The ultimate climb of the holiday will see us on top of the summit ridge of Rushcock Hill with glorious views down into Kington, your final destination. Time for a celebratory cup of tea before starting the journey back to the hotel. 

Day 8

Departure day

Meals

Breakfast

Departure after breakfast. Check out of the hotel is by 10.15am.

We hope you have enjoyed your holiday and look forward to welcoming you on another soon.  

Departure dates for your selected tour

4th May 2024 - 11th May 2024 (7 Nights)

13th Jul 2024 - 20th Jul 2024 (7 Nights)

21st Sep 2024 - 28th Sep 2024 (7 Nights)

Travel Details

Private coach transport to and from the trailheads, is included on each walk day.

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 Dragon Hotel

The Dragon hotel was originally built as a Coaching Inn around 1630. For centuries, horses and coaches would be driven right through the centre of the hotel and the covered coachway now forms the entrance area. The three-star hotel is located in the attractive town of Montgomery, in the heart of the beautiful Mid Wales countryside and is owned by a group of local families. It has built an excellent reputation for the friendliness and helpfulness of the staff, all of whom live in and around Montgomery.

Rooms come with complimentary Wi-Fi, TV, bath or shower and tea and coffee making facilities. The hotel is situated over three floors and some of these have sloping roofs and exposed beams. Stairs to the upper floor are fairly narrow and because of the layout of the historic building, there are no lifts in the hotel, however staff will assist with bags should you require help.

Trip Information

All the details you need

Holiday Grade

This is a Grade 6 challenging holiday which includes full day walks covering distances between 9.5 and 13.5 miles each day, with appreciable amounts of ascent and descent (no more than 840m). Whilst you will mainly be on paths, these may be rough, steep and loose at times. Expect to be out for 8 hours most days, though that will include your breaks. 

This holiday takes in a variety of sights along the way on this continuous trail with some challenging climbs, with rewarding views and some longer days than others. This is the most challenging section of the trail where you will reach the highest point of the Offa's Dyke Path. The average mileage covered each day is higher than our usual Grade 6 holiday, however it is fully within grade when you take into account the terrain and the maximum amounts of ascent and descent covered each day. 

See the 'Proposed Itinerary' for more information.

Walks & Excursions

The Offa’s Dyke path runs for 177 miles from Prestatyn on the North Wales coast to Chepstow on the Severn Estuary.

The route follows the ancient barrier built by Offa, the King of Mercia, in the 8th century to protect his kingdom from his rivals in what is now Wales.

We’ll walk 66 miles (approximately) of the central section of the route southwards from Chirk Castle on the edge of England, reaching the highest point of the trail before reaching the traditional English town of Kington. The central section will be completed in six sections over your 7-night stay, returning each night to our hotel.

Local Transport Costs

In the holiday cost, we've included all local transport expenses related to the advertised activity programme 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.

Optional Excursions

At your destination, you may have the option to book various local excursions and activities through a local operator. It's important to note that we are not involved in these activities or excursions, and we do not operate, supervise, or control them in any way. Your contract will be directly with the local activity supplier, and we bear no responsibility for their actions or omissions.

Spending Money

Holiday Budgeting

When budgeting for your holiday, you will need to consider drinks, non-included entrance fees, optional excursions you may choose to participate in locally and any souvenirs or additional services such as laundry. 

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.

Tour Leaders & Local Guides

Tour Leaders

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 organised they are also well-travelled and deeply enthusiastic about showing you new destinations.  Your tour leader takes care of all the local administration, 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.

Leader's 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 organised group programme, please inform your leader. Your preferences are important, and your leader is there to make sure your experience aligns with your expectations.

Your Travel Details

Montgomery can be reached by train and the nearest station is in Welshpool (7.5 miles away), then you can take a bus or taxi to the hotel. There are regular rail services from Shrewsbury and Birmingham to the East and from Aberystwyth to the West. By road, when travelling from the midlands, Montgomery is within one hour of the M6 Motorway via the M54. It can easily be reached from the north-west via the A483, while travellers from the south can have a beautifully scenic route via the A49. If driving, the hotel has a car park and there is also a free park in the town. The local public bus provider is Tanat Valley Coaches. 

You may also wish to look at the following website for advice on the best way to travel to the accommodation; www.rome2rio.com 

The AA and RAC both offer free and detailed on-line route planning facilities on their websites which may help you find the hotel. Details can be found at: www.theaa.co.uk and www.rac.co.uk 

Meeting your tour leader and fellow walkers: Please check the time of dinner (approximately 7pm) on arrival at the hotel and aim to be in the hotel bar half an hour beforehand for an introduction to your leader, an outline of the planned programme for your holiday and the chance to meet your walking companions.

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

Breakfasts and dinners are taken at the hotel and are included in the cost of your holiday. Packed lunches are not included but can be purchased from the hotel or supplies can be purchased locally each day.  

Footwear & Kit List

Footwear

Lightweight waterproof walking boots with a good moulded sole (such as Vibram or similar) and a deep tread and which provide ankle support are strongly recommended and may be essential for some walks.

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
  • Lightweight quick-drying trousers
  • Walking T-shirt/shirts
  • Walking socks
  • Fleece or jumper
  • Sun hat, sunglasses, lip salve and sun block
  • Warm hat and gloves (if appropriate)
  • Swimwear (if appropriate)
  • Day sack (this should be able to carry all you would need for the day's activity)
  • Day sack liner
  • Water bottle - at least 1 litre capacity (more than 1 bottle may be required)
  • Basic first aid kit
  • Lunchbox
  • Walking poles (should you find them useful)
  • Sit mat

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

Travel Documents Checklist

Documents and Information to take with you:

  • Holiday money
  • 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)
  • Holiday booking confirmation document
  • Travel insurance details (if applicable)
  • Details of any medical condition or allergy your holiday leader should know about

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 RWW15 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!

Maps, Guidebooks & Other Information

Maps, Guidebooks & More

Our intended route is covered by the following maps:

Ordnance Survey Explorer series (1:25,000 scale maps):
240 Oswestry
216 Welshpool and Montgomery
201 Knighton and Presteigne

Harvey’s maps: Offa's Dyke Path National Trail

Trailblazer Guides: Offa’s Dyke Path (Keith Carter) www.trailblazer-guides.com

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.

Weather

Visit the following websites for an idea of the climate in your destination:

Staying Healthy On Holiday

Health requirements in destination can change, and it's crucial for you to take responsibility in staying informed. Ensure that you consult a professionally qualified source and comply with any health requirements at least 6 to 8 weeks before your departure. Your GP can provide advice on vaccinations. Stay proactive about your health preparations to ensure a safe and enjoyable travel experience.

Health Advice for United Kingdom

No compulsory immunisations are required for holidays in the UK although you should be up to date with the usual immunisations recommended for life in Britain. Tetanus immunisation is recommended.

Further Travel 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

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.


Personal Safety

The UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office is your go-to for the latest info on security, local laws, and the nitty-gritty of passports and visas at www.gov.uk/travelaware. Make sure to take a quick peek at the current advice for your upcoming destination—it'll only take a few minutes.

When you're out and about, stay aware of your surroundings. Take smart precautions with your credit cards and passport, and maybe tone down the flashy accessories. Less is more, especially when it comes to carrying cash—just enough for the day will do. Consider using a money belt for that extra layer of security. Stay alert, stay safe, and make the most of your travels!

Cultural Awareness

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.

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.

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. See our website for more information and details of some of the projects we support.

Staying In Touch

Mobile Phones

Kindly share a mobile phone contact number with us. We'll utilize this solely for crucial communication pertaining to your holiday arrangements.

Ensure your mobile phone remains switched on and easily accessible when en route to the airport or during transit delays. This way, we can promptly reach you with any last-minute updates concerning your travel plans.

In consideration of others, we request that you switch off your mobile phone during walks or make an effort to limit its usage. Additionally, during group meals, please minimize the use of mobile devices. Your cooperation ensures a seamless and enjoyable experience for everyone on the journey.

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