Sat 29th June 2024
- Sat 6th July 2024
8 days and 7 nights
Outstanding beauty, uncrowded and unspoilt - all words to describe these mystical, ancient Scilly Isles off the Cornwall Coast. Many people go to explore, but few are lucky to join Miriam Darlington, who we are privileged to have guiding her first WalkingWomen Trip next summer. She is a leading nature writer and she lived on Scilly and is passionate to share her love of every inch of these 5 inhabited jewels in the Atlantic Ocean. Do join us on an incredible, exclusive, once in a lifetime extraordinary trip - we have only 10 spaces on this small group trip.
Dates: Saturday June 29th to Saturday July 6th
Guide: Miriam Darlington a specialist nature writer who lived and worked on the Isles of Scilly for five years and now loves bringing groups here to discover this hidden gem for themselves. She is an avid bird lover and has written extensively about owls as well as other aspects of nature. Recently the rare tropical red-footed booby has been spotted in the Isles of Scilly area so we hope this trip will bring many wonders.
If you would like some of Miriam’s work The Wise Hours by Miriam Darlington
Walking Grade: 2 Goats – we grade this two goats as the distances are up to 18km and we want you to get the most from these walks to discover each of the 5 Scilly Islands. Walks will be at a slow pace as you take in all the wonderful scenery and wildlife around you. Miriam is a gem and such a specialist that she will be sure to give you insights that you just wouldn’t get to hear about on your own.
If you want more information about our goat levels please read on Goat Guide
Base: Tregarthen’s Hotel, Garrison Hill, St Marys, Isles of Scilly, TR21 OPP
The hotel is near the sea and just yards from the quay where you can catch a boat to explore the other islands. All of our 10 rooms have a sea view either over the harbour, over the water to the off islands or across the roofscape of Hugh Town towards Porthcressa Bay. We will allocate on a first come first basis. The hotel restaurant serves local produce and at the end of the day you can relax and immerse yourself in its charm. There are few better places to pause and soak up the views.
All evening meals will be in the hotel except for one evening when we hope to take a boat, departure usually at 6pm to St Agnes, giving plenty of time for a stroll as well as a meal on the island. (this is weather dependent)
How to get there:
Isles of Scilly, also called Scilly Isles, lie just off the coast of Cornwall.
The Scillonian ferry goes daily from Penzance to St Mary’s and on the 29th June it departs at 8am arriving into St Marys at 10.45am. If not driving you might like to take an overnight train from London Paddington to Penzance getting you there in time for your departure. The return journey on the 6th July is at 14.30 from St Marys, arriving back into Penzance at 17.15.
You can also take the Skybus from Land’s End which takes about 20 minutes to get to St Marys. There are several flights daily. You can also fly from Exeter, journey time takes about an hour.
Our hotel can offer a 10% discount on the Scillonian or Skybus (standard tickets only) Let us know if you will be travelling this way and we can arrange.
You also have the option of flying one way and taking the ferry back.
To check out 2024 Routes and Fares please take a look here Scilly Travel
We advise booking travel as early as you can. If you would like to discuss your travel please do call us on 01784 664063 and ask to speak to Sara
Arrival: for 15.00 check in, settle in and a short orientation walk. There will be a briefing with your guide at 18.00 followed by a welcome dinner together.
Departure: After Breakfast. If your ferry or flight isn’t until later in the day the hotel will store your luggage for you.
Price:£ 2600 per person for this very special holiday to include:
- Expert Naturalist Guiding
- Ensuite room with sea views for solo occupancy on a dinner, bed and breakfast basis
- Lunches on walking days – these may be packed lunches from the hotel or in one of the island’s wonderful cafes
- All evening meals included – 1 evening we hope to take an evening supper boat to St Agnes (weather dependent)
- Local transport and boat journeys to visit the 5 inhabited islands ( there are 140 others not inhabited)
- Entrance to Tresco Abbey Gardens
- A special local Cream Tea
If you can bring a friend/partner and share a room there is a discount of £100 pp and the price is £2500 per person . We will discount your final bill once you have paid your deposit.
- Travel to the Isles of Scilly
- Any additional excursions not on the itinerary
- Anything not mentioned above
The Isles of Scilly lie just off the coast of Cornwall and a world apart from everywhere. They are a natural wonder,like a cluster of ocean jewels, where nature thrives and the soul is inspired. This is a prefect destination for our WalkingWomen wanderers.
Sara was there this year planning and preparing and we were delighted to find Miriam to guide locally having lived and worked on the island. She knows all the islands little secrets.
In her words
“ I feel like this is the perfect place for women to gather and have adventures; the whole archipelago is enchanted with layers of fascinating history and ethereal beauty and although rugged in places, walking the coast gives you a warm sense of safety, a feeling of being connected to yourself, far away from the harsh realities of the outside world. This is a place that I feel brings people into mindfulness as they walk, enfolded by the Atlantic yet within reach of its utter wildness. I’m a keen bird watcher and often volunteer for wildlife trusts surveying bird populations. I will explain happily about all the seabirds, as well as the song birds that live here and are remarkably tame. Expect to be wowed by the weather, be immersed in the elements and come home well-fed, refreshed and exhilarated “
If you want to take a sneak peak do take a look at this short video..
Recently the red footed booby has been spotted in the area and we hope to show you so many varieties of birds on this trip.
Read about the Red Footed Booby Bird
Our itinerary which may be changed subject to availability, weather and tides. Boat timings can change due to tides so please prepare to be flexible. You can trust that our guide will give you the best experience you will ever have of these islands.
Your guide Miriam will brief you each morning.
We visit all five inhabited islands of this charming archipelago, staying on the main island of St Mary’s as our base, and walking the coast of each isle to absorb the beauty, flavour and idiosyncrasy of each.
Day 1 Arrival on St Mary’s and check in at the lovely Tregarthen’s hotel. Early evening stroll (1-1.5 hr) around the Garrison to take in the atmosphere and look out to sea. You will have the chance to sample traditional local ale in the Mermaid pub next to the hotel – or your tipple of choice!
Day 2 St Agnes. 10.15 depart from St Mary’s Quay on boat trip to the neighbouring island of St Agnes. We will spend the day walking around St Agnes for approx 16km/10 miles with refreshment stops. 25m elevation.
We return to St Mary’s on the 4.15pm ferry.
Day 3 St Mary’s: 18km/11 miles with 205 ascent – a circular walk around the island. 4-5 hours walking at a gentle pace.
Walking from the hotel we spend the entire day walking around the circumference of St Mary’s. We will stop for our picnic lunch and maybe a tea and cake stop at Juliet’s garden with its spectacular views over St Mary’s.
The trail has some small sections that are road with sparse traffic and the rest is mainly a coastal view with soft grassy or earthy paths, rocky outcrops,low cliffs and some sandy beaches. You are unlikely to encounter many people. This is a beautiful walk with serene views of the sea, some historic sites and a nearly continuous horizon of surrounding islands.
Day 4 Option day. Choose a rest day where you could walk up to the spectacular Penninis promontory to see the Pulpit rock, and return via Old Town Church. Or other possible trips: either to visit the fascinating Tresco Abbey Gardens or if sea legs are feeling brave, the Bishop Rock Lighthouse. For Bird enthusiasts, there is a possible Seabird Special trip with the possibility of seeing dolphins, Atlantic grey seals, puffins, razorbills, shearwaters and fulmars. Birds galore. Warm clothes, waterproofs and binoculars recommended.
There is an option to include a trip to Tresco Abbey Gardens (this is included in the cost of your holiday) and then spend the remainder of your day at leisure.
Day 5 10.15 depart from the quay for St Martins. Walk around the entirety of this spectacularly atmospheric isle which is approx 6 miles/9.65km with 47m elevation. You can expect to walk for 5 hours
Day 6 10.15 to Bryher. The walk around Bryher is approx 5 miles/ almost 8km which will take approx 4 hours with refreshment stops. There is 32m elevation.
Day 7 Final day! Walk around the north coast of Tresco approx 8 miles/10.8km with an elevation of 44m.
Day 8 Departure day. Hankies recommended! There will be promises of return.