FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

General Holiday Questions
Walking Holidays General
Guided Walking Holidays
Independent Walking and Cycling Holidays
Event Breaks
Competitions and Newsletters
Choosing Your Walking Holiday

General Holiday Questions

 

What are my travel options?

General information concerning the different possibilities is detailed in our dedicated section of the website under Travel Options. Each holiday description, whether in France or Africa, provides more specific information about getting to your holiday destination.

For France, you can choose to travel by car using the ferry or the channel tunnel, by rail or by air. If you would like advice or assistance in booking your travel arrangements please contact us. Please do not book your travel arrangements until you have made a pre-booking enquiry or contacted us by phone to ensure that the holiday is available and corresponds to what you are looking for.

Do I need my passport?

Although the United Kingdom is part of the European Union (EU), you still need to carry a full British 10-year passport (or five-year child passport if you are under 16 and not on a parent’s passport) every time you travel to France. This includes day trips and travel by Eurostar.

Many countries no longer check passports at their land borders, but they still expect visitors to be able to produce a valid form of identification. For UK travellers this is the British passport. Remember, your passport will have to be checked at immigration control when you return to the UK. This advice applies to UK nationals only, for other nationalities please consult your relevant government or embassy sites.

If you are travelling to one of our destinations outside of the EU you will need to have a full passport valid for more than 6 months after the departure date. More information will be sent to you at the time of booking your holiday.

Non British citizens should check with the relevant authorities as to their visa requirements for France and Morocco.

Where will we be picked up?

As a general rule, our guide or local partner will usually meet you at the local airport or railway station. Such transfers are included in the price of your holiday unless otherwise stated. Details about appropriate airports and flights for a specific holiday are detailed under the relevant holiday pages. If in doubt, please contact us.

Can you give me advice?

Yes, we will be only too pleased to provide you with advice on any matters relating to our holidays. Whatever the subject - travel arrangements, passport requirements, our activities, the weather, equipment etc - we are here to give you honest advice, helping you make the right decision, even if that advice means that our holidays aren’t the best option for you. You can call us straight away on 07483 241945 or e-mail us and we will then telephone you at a time to suit you. You can also use our on-line contact us form.

Do you offer tailor-made holidays?

Yes, if you have a specific idea that is not catered for by our advertised holidays, we can create a made-to-measure holiday to meet your requirements. Whether you wish to add additional days to an existing offer or create your own holiday, we can arrange it for you. Thanks to our network of specialist partners we can create a range of active holidays, for example, learning to horse ride, a trip in a hot air balloon, wine tasting courses, Thermal Spa treatment breaks, or fishing.

I only have a few days holiday left, what can you offer me?

We can adapt our independent walking holidays and other activity breaks to suit your needs. Please contact us as early as possible to discuss your plans. We do not recommend starting our guided walking holidays after the start as it can affect your enjoyment of the holiday, as well as the togetherness of the group. We can, however, organise extra nights before or after the scheduled holiday. We also offer made to measure holidays including individually tailored guided walks for groups.

What if I need help whilst on holiday?

You will be personally taken care of on our guided walking holidays. On all our other holidays you will be sent an information pack before your holiday providing facts concerning every aspect of your holiday including a local contact number, in case there is a problem or emergency.

Where will I stay and where will I eat?

There is a page dedicated to accommodation on our web site concerning our French holidays. The majority of our accommodation is in quality B&B’s or small independent hotels. Some walking holidays may use mountain refuges or camping. Please consult the holiday details for further information. Often we will use several establishments during the course of a holiday. Continental breakfasts, packed lunches and evening meals are generally all provided by our welcoming hosts, although occasionally meals will be taken in local restaurants. The accommodation is often within traditionally built properties, lovingly restored. Meals served by our hosts use local fresh produce, often grown on their own properties, in order to cook authentic local delicacies. There will also be plenty of opportunity for those wishing to taste the local wine. A glass or two is sometimes free with the evening meals (except in restaurants). Our activity holidays are designed for those wishing to immerse themselves in the French culture and lifestyle for a few days.

Do you cater for vegetarians?

All of the establishments we use are able to adapt to specific diets, as long as you let us know when you book.

Do I need to speak French on your holidays in France?

Holidays can be a great experience if you can speak to the locals in their language. However it is certainly not a condition of our holidays.

Our guided walking holidays in France will be lead by bilingual guides. Elsewhere your local guides speak very good English.

Some guest houses on our independent activity holidays are quality bed and breakfasts; where meals are often taken with the hosts and a grasp of French would help, although, many of the hosts speak excellent levels of English.

Whatever your level of French, we do suggest that you try and embrace the cultural differences and be open minded. After all, our holidays are based around having an authentic local experience.

Do I need Travel Insurance?

Yes, it is essential that you have insurance. It needs to cover cancellation, loss/theft of personal possessions, and/or money, medical expenses, and valid cover for the activity, which should all be valid for the country visited.

How do I book?   

Once you have chosen your holiday, please go to our How to Book page where all will be explained. We do suggest that you contact us before making a firm booking.

Are your holidays suitable for children?

Children are welcome on our easier graded independent walking and cycling holidays. Very young children can be carried in a specialised rucksack or papoose and bikes can be hired that have special child seats. Our guided walking holidays are not normally suitable for children under the age of 16 years of age. However, there may be exceptions to this general rule and we recommend that you have a chat with us first, so that we can discuss the suitability of the holiday in relation to your child’s age and abilities.

Please also contact us for a quotation for your child as reduced rates will usually apply. For all other holidays we recommend that you have a chat with us first, so that we can discuss the suitability of the holiday in relation to your child’s age and abilities. The price will depend on the holiday and will be based on sharing a room with the parents. Often large family rooms can be provided. Just tell us your requirements. All children under the age of 18 must be accompanied by their parent(s) or a guardian who is completely responsible for their actions.

Are there any hidden charges?

We make every effort to ensure that you understand what is included in the price of our holidays. To achieve this, each holiday description includes information on the elements not included in the price as well as those elements that make up part of your holiday package.

walking holidays general

 

Why should I choose High Point Holidays?

Because we offer great walking holidays letting you experience that little bit extra. Our walks have been specially designed for walkers who wish to explore the full richness of an area without following the usual tourist tracks. We have tried and tested all of our walks ourselves. We also try and give you an authentic slice of French life during your stay through our choice of accommodation and meals. In addition we offer pickup at the local station or airport and the ability to adapt our independent walking holidays to your needs.

In addition our guided walking holidays have

    • Use of our own knowledgeable and experienced leaders
    • Flexible itineraries to adapt to local conditions and the groups abilities and interests
    • Authentic French experience

     

    How do I choose the right walking holiday for me?

    Look at our separate page on Choosing Your Walking Holiday. It takes you through the questions you need to consider when looking at guided or independent as well as other factors such as your abilities and the type of walking.

    Where do you offer walking Holidays?

    We offer a number of guided and independent walking holidays in France and the Alps, as well as classic treks in Africa. The destinations are as follows:

    France: Ardeche, Auvergne, Cantal, Dordogne, Lot, Haute Loire, Drome, Alsace, Burgundy, Baronnies, Beaujolais, Jura, Lyon, Tarn & Aveyron, Calanques, Cote d'Azur, Pyrenees Mediteranean, Luberon

    The Pyrennes: Cerdagne, Azun Valley

    The Alps: Queyras, Vanoise, Vercors, Ecrins, Mercantour

    Africa: High Atlas - Morocco

    Please consult our guided holidays or independent holidays for more details.

    How fit do I need to be?

    That depends on the walking holiday you have chosen. Our page relating to walking grades provides detailed information about the level of fitness and experience that we advise. Each holiday also provides additional information on the nature of the walks. In all cases, you will undoubtedly find the first couple of days more enjoyable if you’ve done some walking before you come on holiday.

    Where will I stay and where will I eat?

    The majority of our accommodation is in quality B&B’s or small independent hotels. Our walking holidays in France never use large chain hotels. Some holidays use mountain refuges and camping. Please consult holiday details for further information. Often we will use several establishments during the course of a holiday. Breakfasts, packed lunches and evening meals are generally all provided by your welcoming hosts, although occasionally meals will be taken in local restaurants. The accommodation is often within traditionally built properties, lovingly restored. Meals served by our hosts use local fresh produce, often grown on their own farms or gardens, to create authentic local delicacies. There will also be plenty of opportunity for those wishing to taste the local wine. Our holidays are designed for those wishing to immerse themselves in the French culture and lifestyle for a few days. The accommodation and places to eat will be determined in part by the size of the group. If you are a large group booking a guided walking holiday, the options will be discussed with you where accommodation needs to match your requirements.

    What clothing and equipment do I need to bring?

    You will need to bring suitable clothing and footwear for walking many hours on rough paths in all types of weather. However, you do not need to buy expensive specialist equipment. Jeans should be avoided during the walks and we strongly recommend wearing a pear of comfortable walking boots, which should be worn-in prior to the holiday, as they help protect against ankle injuries. You may find walking poles a good buy as they provide purchase when going up hill, reduce the impact on knee joints and assist in stability on uneven or slippery ground. 

    Please refer to our dedicated web page concerning clothing and equipment, for a list of essential items.

    Will I need to carry a large rucksack?

    No, all you need to carry is a small daypack with essential items, including your packed lunch. Occasionally, our guided walking holidays that take place in more remote locations may require you to carry overnight essentials during a two-day circuit. Please check the specific holiday pages for details.

    What type of walks do you offer?

    Our independent walking holidays will take you from one night’s accommodation to the next. Detailed information packs including route notes and maps (all included in the price) are provided to guide your way, but there is always the time to explore the sights on route.

    Our guided walking holidays are generally based on daily and more occasionally two or three-day circuits both of which are tailored to suit the ability and interests of the group, as well as the weather conditions. Our African treks involve larger circuits of several days.

    guided walking holidays

     

    How many people can go on a group guided walking holiday?

    Our guided walking holidays in France were initially based on small groups of between 4 and 8 people, not including the leader. But we have now adapted many of these to cater for up to 24 people. See Group size. Our African treks have a maximum group size of 10. Group walking holidays are ideal for groups of friends who enjoy walking as well as the more formal walking clubs that wish to explore further afield

    Who are your leaders?

    Our principal leader, William Armstrong is qualified in first aid, fluent in the local language and extremely knowledgeable about our destinations. He is also a very experienced walker and mountaineer who, for many years, has led groups in the hills and mountains. Other leaders will have, as a minimum, this level of competency. See our section on our leaders. Our guided walking holiday in the Tarn is led by local resident and mountain leader Siân Thomas. Our African treks are led by local, knowledgable guides.

    Independent walking and cycling holidays

     

    How many people will be on the holiday?

    That will depend on the time of year you are travelling as some periods will be busier than others. However, as we are a small operation and are not catering for mass tourism, you may find that you are the only couple or family travelling on a particular day. If there are other people, you do not have to walk or cycle together. You can set your own pace and decide on your own sightseeing arrangements.

    Are the holidays suitable for single guests?

    We are unfortunately obliged to levy a single supplement for single guests on our unguided activity holidays. Our guided walking holidays are better suited to single travellers provided that you accept to share a twin room with other group members of the same sex.

    Are your holidays available all year round?

    No, they are generally not available during August or during the winter period. Please refer to each holiday for specific dates. There is no best time to travel, although if you are worried about the heat, it would be advisable to avoid July. Mid September is a good time to see the grapes being picked in the Beaujolais region and mid-October to catch the vines in their full autumnal colours.

    Do I need to be able to read a map?

    Everyone on our independent walking and cycling holidays are provided with detailed route notes and sketch maps, which are sufficient to navigate on your journey. We will, however, provide you with 1:25000 walking maps on the walking tours and adequate route maps for the cycle tours, which can be used if you so wish. We would advise that someone in your party has a minimum knowledge of map reading, in case of problems. In the unlikely event that you do not turn up at your accommodation by a certain time, we will rapidly organise a search. Please keep the information pack with you at all times as it provides useful facts about what to do if you have a problem or an emergency.

    How fit do I need to be?

    Walking: That depends on the walking holiday you have chosen. Our page relating to walking grades provides detailed information about the level of fitness and experience that we advise. In all cases, you will undoubtedly find the first couple of days more enjoyable if you’ve done some gentle walks before you come on holiday.

    Cycling: Our page relating to cycling grades provides detailed information about the level of fitness and experience that we advise. Most holidays provide the opportunity to take a day-off, if you so wish. Please consult the each holiday page to find out more.

    Do you provide the bikes and helmets?

    Yes, we will provide you with bikes, helmets and small baskets to carry essential items. The bikes are all cleaned and maintained by our local partners. You may supply your own bike if you wish. For the more challenging road tours and mountain biking holidays we can supply bikes adapted to the difficulties. Please let us know your requirements at the time of booking.

    Do you provide assistance?

    It is unlikely that you will have a problem with your bike, however, if you run into difficulties, there is a number to call and someone will come out to assist you.

     

    event breaks

     

    Are your holidays available all year round?

    Yes. Booking for special events or for periods such as Christmas should be done as early as possible in order to avoid disappointment, as there is high demand for accommodation.

    Where will I stay and where will I eat?

    The majority of our accommodation is in independent hotels on a bed and breakfast basis. Our city break holidays allow you to choose the quality and type of accommodation that you desire. All hotels are within the city centre. We provide an information pack detailing recommended restaurants.

    How will I know what places to visit?

    You will be provided with an information pack, which will include details about interesting and historic sights to visit, museums and exhibitions, possible walking circuits, public transport details, places to eat and drink and other essential information.

    What event breaks do you cover?

    The Beaujolais Nouveau, the Light Festival in Lyon and the summer arts and music festival in Lyon’s roman amphitheatre. We can also organise activities, accommodation and meals for your very own special event or celebration.