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Castles of the Shropshire Marches

Along the border between England and Wales
 
Discover the heart of the Shropshire Marches on this self-guided walking holiday, with luggage transported. Stay in fine hostelries serving real ales and delicious home-made cuisine, and explore dramatic Norman castles and fascinating Saxon hillforts en route.
Castles of the Shropshire Marches. 4 nights
Castles of the Shropshire Marches. 4 nights
 

Holiday information

 

A walking holiday in Shropshire

In the heart of the border Marches, Shropshire is an archetypal English county of great historical importance, from the Saxon hillforts and Norman castles built to defend against Welsh incursion, to the rolling hills and winding river valleys that provided the background to the Industrial Revolution. Today all is calm, and this quiet, unspoiled corner of rural England within a stone’s throw of the Welsh border is a fascinating area to explore.
Leaving historic Bishop's Castle, this walk follows ancient drovers’ trails along the ridgeways, or 'cefns' of the border, linking in with sections of the Shropshire Way as you approach the historic market town of Ludlow. You pass through charming unspoiled villages, explore castles and hillforts, and wander across common pastureland that has not been ploughed for centuries.
 
Gallery
 

Itinerary

The key to Inntravel holidays is flexibility. You can start on the day of your choice, and are free to add extra nights.
  • The average maximum daytime temperatures and monthly rainfall relate to the nearest weather station and are intended as a guide only.

    You should always be prepared for wet weather, whichever month you are travelling.
    Average temperatures and rainfall
      Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
    °C 6 6 9 12 16 19 20 20 18 14 9 7
    mm 67 52 60 56 62 60 52 72 61 60 65 75
  • Arrival in Bishop's Castle
    Night 1: at The Castle Hotel (the first of two nights here).
    As your first night’s accommodation is on the day of travel, Day 1 is your first day of walking.
  • Linear walk from Bishop's Castle: 16km (10 miles), 5hrs
    Your first walk begins with a short transfer south to the picturesque riverside village of Clun. After visiting the ruined castle, once an important border fortress, continue east to one of the finest hillforts in England, Bury Ditches. Soak in the spectacular views from the top before making your way back to Bishop's Castle through this unspoiled border country of quiet valleys, shady copses and fertile common land.
    Linear walk from Bishop's Castle: 16km
    Around Bishop's Castle, approaching Bury Ditches
  • Bishop's Castle to Ludlow: 15km (9.5 miles), 5hrs
    Leaving Bishop’s Castle behind, you are transferred to the 13th-century Stokesay Castle, arguably the best fortified manor house in the country. Take time to explore its halls, tower and moat before continuing on foot along the Shropshire Way, passing through gentle and undulating countryside as well as the tiny hamlet of Bromfield, whose unassuming Norman church boasts a remarkable painted ceiling, before crossing Oakly Park and the River Teme to reach Ludlow, where you spend two nights at The Cliffe at Dinham.
    Bishop's Castle to Ludlow: 15km
    Stokesay Castle, en route from Bishop's Castle to Ludlow
  • Explore Ludlow
    Once described as “the most perfect town in England”, Ludlow is an architectural delight of medieval and Tudor half-timbered houses crowned by its impressive Norman castle. The town is also famous for its gastronomy – ranging from its lead in the Slow Food movement, to its many fine restaurants, a bustling farmers’ market, a wide selection of specialist food shops and two annual festivals: the Ludlow Spring Festival in early May which showcases local produce to the tune of local bands; and the Marches Food & Drink Festival (held every September) featuring the famous ‘sausage trail’.

    Circular walk from Ludlow: 9.5km (6 miles), 3hrs
    Or, for a final stretch of the legs, we also provide notes for a short circular walk into the hills south of Ludlow. After crossing the River Teme, your route climbs through the mixed woodland of Mortimer Forest, named for the Norman Lords who once controlled the area, before dropping down into the secluded Mary Knoll Valley and returning to Ludlow via a different path.
    Circular walk from Ludlow: 9.5km
    Ludlow town trail
 

Accommodation

You stay at one inn and one country hotel, both very welcoming and of a high quality.
 
Prices & travel options
All prices are in £ sterling (GBP). If you'd like to see what they equate to in your currency, use the converter.
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  • 4 nights: 01 May 2019 - 31 October 2019

    Start any day | End by latest date(s) shown above

    Starting Price Single room
    1 May - 30 Sep 2019 # £480 £220
    1 - 27 Oct 2019 £465 £220
    3rd & 4th person discount -£40
    Single traveller supplement £40
    # Add £18pp/n (£54pn in a single) if staying in Ludlow Friday or Saturday 1 May-30 Sep 2019

    Please note: this holiday is not available to children under 12 years, nor are dogs permitted on Inntravel holidays

    Included travel: transfer Ludlow-Bishop's Castle to collect car OR from/to Craven Arms or Ludlow railway stations

  • Room upgrades (£ per person per night)

    The Castle Hotel, Bishop's Castle
    'Master': 01 May - 31 Oct 2019 £15

    Extra nights (£ per person per night) in a double or single room

    The Castle Hotel, Bishop's Castle (B&B) Double room Single room
    01 May - 31 Oct 2019 £80 £120
    The Cliffe at Dinham, Ludlow (B&B) Double room Single room
    01 May - 31 Oct 2019 £54 £112
    Add £18pp/n (£54pn in a single) if staying in Ludlow Friday or Saturday 1 May-30 Sep 2019
  • Prices below are based on 2 people travelling together. If you are travelling solo or as a party of 3 or more and our arrangements include a taxi, please contact us for prices; additional passengers often pay less.

    Connecting travel options - via Craven Arms station

    Outward route Price per person Latest train
    arrival time
    taxi Craven Arms station to hotel (0h20) included flexible
    Homeward route Price per person Earliest flight
    departure time
    taxi hotel to Craven Arms station (0h10) included flexible

    Connecting travel options - via Ludlow station

    Outward route Price per person Latest train
    arrival time
    taxi Ludlow station to hotel (0h30) included flexible
    Homeward route Price per person Earliest train
    departure time
    taxi hotel to Ludlow station (0h10) included flexible
What is included
  • 4 nights
  • 1 dinner
    2 picnics
    4 breakfasts
  • luggage transported
  • route notes and maps
  • taxi to/from local railway stations or to collect car
 
Reviews

If you've experienced this holiday first hand, why not write a review?

We are keen for as many customers as possible to review their holiday. To make it easier to do so, we include a specific review section on our post-holiday questionnaire, and this is what we publish here, unedited. Read our full review policy >

 

FAQs

If you have any questions relating to this or any other Inntravel holiday, our friendly travel experts will be happy to help. You might also find our General FAQs section helpful.
  • We’ll send you route notes and maps 2-3 weeks before your holiday. The route notes not only contain directions to get from hotel to hotel, but also include practical information about places of interest and eateries along each route, plus cultural information about the area. If/when you are moving between hotels, you leave your luggage in reception as you leave, and it will be transferred ahead to your next accommodation, meaning that all you need to take with you are a camera, sun cream, drinks, food and waterproofs.

    For more detailed information, see our walking holidays in Europe page.
  • We can book a wide range of airlines and routes from the UK. As well as being more convenient for you to book all elements of your holiday together, it also means that we’ll accept liability for your travel arrangements, so if things go wrong, such as the airline going bust, we’ll make suitable alternative arrangements for you. For Europe and Morocco, there’s a £30 booking fee per person (£15 for children aged 2-11). For India and Nepal, the booking fee is £50 per person. More information on flights >
  • We can’t book flights that originate outside the UK, but if you wanted book your own flights to London (or elsewhere in the UK), we can make all onward travel arrangements (including flights) from there. Alternatively, if you are booking your own flights to an airport in continental Europe that’s appropriate for your holiday, we can book onward rail travel and/or taxis. More information about how we can tailor holidays for customers outside the UK >
  • Since our holidays are self-guided, we recommend calling us for a chat about your plans before making a booking, especially if it’s the first time you’ve booked with us.
    The price panel shows the supplement for a single room and also the single traveller charge (this covers (luggage) transfers and other costs which are usually shared between two people).
  • Once you’ve decided on your exact itinerary (our travel experts will be happy to offer advice), you need to provide us with your party’s details, either by phone or via our booking form. At this point we also ask you to pay a deposit so that we can secure a room for you immediately on confirming availability with the hotel(s). If it turns out that we can’t secure the accommodation for the holiday you’ve requested, or offer an acceptable alternative, we’ll refund your deposit promptly and in full. After booking your accommodation and other key elements, we'll then book your travel (or you can do so if you’re making your own arrangements) and send you a Booking Confirmation and Invoice.
  • Yes, it’s something we insist on, even for holidays in the UK. The vast majority of holidays go smoothly, but when things go wrong, it can be expensive to put them right. Buying a new pair of walking boots after your suitcase is stolen mightn’t seem so bad, but the bill for being airlifted down from a mountain with a broken leg or flown home while still recovering from an illness or accident can cost tens of thousands of pounds.

    You don’t have to buy our policy (if you live outside Europe you’ll definitely need to make your own arrangements, as the policy is only for UK and EU residents), but you do need to make sure that you’re covered for medical emergencies and repatriation. We also recommend that you are covered for other eventualities, such as cancellation and loss of luggage and passports.
  • Even in the event of a no-deal Brexit, it’s been confirmed that flights will continue as normal and that you won’t need a visa to go on holiday (the limit on stays is 90 days). What you will need if there’s no deal is a passport that is valid for at least 6 months beyond the date of your arrival (extra months added because you renewed your passport early do not count) and adequate travel insurance to cover you for accidents and illness in case reciprocal health deals are suspended. If you are driving while on holiday, you will probably need an International Driving Permit (plus a Green Card if you are taking your own car to Europe). More information >
  • The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) provides up-to-date, country-by-country travel advice, as well as information on security, local laws, passports and visas for UK citizens.
    If you live outside the UK, see our essential travel information page for a list of relevant websites.
  • You are the best judge of your child’s/children’s capabilities. We are happy to take bookings for families of older children/teenagers if they walk regularly, love the outdoors and are comfortable with the distances and ascent/descent involved. Please note that the bedrooms at most of the accommodation we use will normally only sleep a maximum of 3 people, and sometimes only 2.
Last fetch time is : 11/18/2019 4:31:46 PM