Your walking holiday begins at Beacon Hill, Charnwood, and ends at the stunning National Memorial Arboretum near Lichfield. Walking for an average of 4 hours each day, you will have plenty of time for relaxed picnics and sightseeing along the way. There's plenty to explore , including historic Ashby Castle, National Trust's Calke Abbey and the charming craft workshops at Staunton Harold.
A 4 night version of this holiday is also available
6 - 8 miles
Start any day, all year
Lovely, small B&Bs and inns
Bed and Breakfast
Ensuite accommodation on a b&b basis, car parking, luggage transfer when moving hotels, detailed self-guide route to follow at your own pace. We're on hand to offer local support when required
Travel to your holiday starting point. Entry to attractions. Single supplement. Dinners. Extra nights. Travel insurance
Taking your time to listen to the birds, as you idle along the banks of the River Trent, past the Anchor Church sandstone caves.
A peaceful picnic watching the hidden oak noon column strike true noon.
Exploring the wonderful gardens of Calke Abbey and Melbourne Hall along the way.
A refreshing craft ale at the sunny beer garden near Calke.
The artisan craftsmen at De Ferrers Courtyard at Staunton Harold. The unspoilt views.
Day 1: Starting your walking holiday in the little town of Melbourne, we will arrange to meet you, once you have settled into your first hotel. We'll share our favourite places to stop along the way and answer any questions. Be sure to let us know if you have any special interests – we live locally and are experts in the area. Enjoy an evening wander around the pretty town. We suggest arriving early enough to enjoy a visit to the beautiful Melbourne Hall gardens and courtyard. The Hall was home to the Victorian Prime Minister William Lamb and is the namesake for Melbourne, Australia. You will find plenty of places to enjoy a drink and dinner in the town.
Day 2: Your walking holiday begins with a lovely walk alongside a reservoir, popular with sailors, before following bridleways and green lanes. You will pass a small collection of buildings, known as St Bride's, built from an old Norman chapel and named after a local spring. Your walk now takes you through beautiful woodland, as you head towards the River Trent. Take your time , as you listen to the birds sing. The cuckoo are usually in full voice here! Reaching a small village, your walk now takes you along a long stretch of the banks of the River Trent, towards the village of Repton. It's a beautiful place to sit and enjoy a long, lazy picnic. Along the way, you will find the caves of Anchor Church, carved into the rock face. This natural cave has been formed into a folly and is thought to have been the home of a hermit. The river inlet by the caves is a popular place for a wild swim on summer days. As you walk through lush flood meadowland, you will see the hamlet of Twyford on the opposite bank. Look for the remains of the old chain ferry crossing. This was the main Trent crossing, before a bridge was built at Repton. The ferry was in use until the mid 1960's, when it was destroyed by heavy flooding. After a short distance you will be able to see the village of Repton in front of you, where you will spend the night. Repton is home to the famous Repton School, which was the school of Jeremy Clarkson and Roald Dahl. The village was the capital of the kingdom of Mercia and is well worth exploring. Evidence of a huge Viking camp and mass grave has been found here and the church crypt was the burial place of 3 Anglo Saxon kings. Tonight, you will be staying in a wonderful small hotel, with its own micro-brewery and delicious food. The sunny courtyard is the perfect place for an evening cocktail, if the weather is warm.
Day 3: As you leave the village, paths and tracks will take you above the lovely Foremark Reservoir. Enjoy the views back over the River Trent and as far was the Peak District hills. From here you enter woodland to reach the end of the reservoir, known as Carvers Rocks. It's a wonderful walk through the woodland to Foremark Visitor Centre. Grab a take out coffee and sit and enjoy the views back over the reservoir. A short diversion brings you to the little village of Milton, where the village pub is a great place to enjoy lunch. Alternatively, the bench at little Foremark Church is one of our favourite picnic spots. The church is surrounded by countryside and it's a lovely view across the Trent Valley. Passing through the grounds of Foremark Hall, you will follow a track through beautiful mature woodland, before joining the National Forest Way, through newer woodland and on to the village of Ticknall, where you will stay tonight. Look out for the distinctive green pumps in the village, which have been lovingly restored and cared for.
Day 4: The final day of your walking holiday begins with a spectacular walk through the grounds of the National Trust Calke Abbey. There's many options to reach the house, depending on your energy levels! The many old trees are wonderful in every season, but the entrance is truly magnificent in autumn, when you will also hear the rutting deer. Calke Abbey house is described as the “unstately home” and is full of treasures. Gardeners will love exploring the walled garden and orangery, behind the house. And the dahlia walk is definitely not to be missed. Seasonal produce, fresh from the garden is available for sale in the garden, providing tasty treats to enjoy on your walk. The enclosed courtyard cafe at Calke is a delightful suntrap and always busy with walkers and cyclists. Your walk continues through the rolling grounds of Calke, before entering the equally beautiful Staunton Harold Hall. Here you will find a bustling courtyard of artisan crafts, together with a cafe and delicatessen. Plan your visit for true Noon and enjoy your picnic whilst watching the sun shine through the eye of the Noon Column, tucked away on a corner of the estate. A walk through fields brings you towards the village of Breedon. If you're full of energy still, then we recommend the walk to the top of the hill, where you will be greeted with a lovely old Anglo Saxon church and views across the Leicestershire countryside. From here well marked paths and tracks take you back towards your start point of Melbourne.