The warm waters of the Gulf Stream ensure the Scilly Islands have an exceptionally mild climate and their relative remoteness has an Englishness of a bygone age in an unspoilt sub-tropical paradise.
The Isles of Scilly is a wonderful holiday destination for seekers of white sand beaches, a sub-tropical climate and relaxation away from an otherwise hectic world. When you arrive, it will feel like you have journeyed back in time. The islands are small and isolated, with a population of just 2,200 on five inhabited islands which creates a strong sense of community which is very welcoming.
We stay on the island of St Mary’s, the largest island of the Isles of Scilly. Your hotel is situated in an ideal spot overlooking the harbour with views out across to the nearby islands. It is only a short walk to the beach and a five minute walk to the centre of the pretty Hugh Town.
During our holiday we will make use of the local ferries and visit five inhabited islands. A day will be spent on each of St Mary’s, Bryher, Tresco, St Agnes and St Martin’s. Gentle walks will be provided each day so you can really get to know the islands and of course visit the beautiful beaches.
On St Mary’s walking highlights will include a visit to the church yard where Harold Wilson is buried and a possible walk to the Halangy Down Iron Age village. On Bryher look for the Fraggle Rock café and on St Agnes try the Troytown Farm ice cream.
Local boat transportation will take you to the islands each day. Everything is arranged, all you need to do is relax and enjoy the scenery.
- Services of a dedicated Adagio leader
- Half board accommodation
- All local transport (boat fares to neighbouring islands & airport transfers)
- All entrance fees referred to in the holiday programme
What's not included?
- Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
- Discretionary tips
- Optional excursions
- Travel Insurance (you can add this when you book)
To fully enjoy the walking on this holiday you should be able to walk along uneven undulating paths at about 1½ to 2 miles per hour for distances of between 3 to 4 miles with walks lasting up to 3 hours. Most days will be devoted largely to sightseeing, where you can walk as much or as little as you wish.
On the islands we visit there will be some walks which frequently follow coastal paths that are uneven in places with some short sections of rocky surfaces. Each of the walks will be taken at a relaxed pace. Proper walking shoes (not sandals) are therefore essential for this holiday.
Our itinerary is expected to follow the daily schedule outlined below but please bear in mind that the order of the days may be amended, or walks substituted, due to weather conditions or changes beyond our control. Distances, ascent/descent and timings are all approximate and refer only to the countryside walking element of each day.
We fly to St Mary’s and travel the short distance by minibus to our hotel in Hugh Town. Your Adagio Leader will provide you with a short introductory walk of the town before dinner.
Transfer Time = 10 minutes
Hugh Town & Old Town St Mary's
Today will be spent on St Mary’s. We will take our time to discover more of the delights of Hugh Town before we stroll around the headland to the Old Town and then, if time allows, across the island to Halangy Down Iron Age village.
We take a boat to the tiny island of Bryher today which is exposed to the Atlantic breakers on its western edge and has peaceful sandy beaches on the east. It is an island of dramatic contrast – the perfect place to enjoy a taste of untamed Scilly.
Another boat trip today takes us to the island of Tresco; home to Tresco Abbey Gardens where we will have time to explore the variety of plants which thrive there. The gardens are a host of succulents, towering palm trees and giant red flame trees.
St Agnes is the most south westerly inhabited landmass in the British Isles and is wholly unspoilt and peaceful. You may want to bring binoculars for our boat trip to the Western Rocks. There will be a guide from the Isle of Scilly Wildlife Trust aboard. You may get the opportunity to see seals, dolphins and puffins in season.
On our final day we will take a boat to the island of St Martin’s which lies north of St Mary’s. The boat ride between the islands is perhaps the most scenic and the local beaches are known to be the best in the Scillies. During your day we will also have a tour of the local vineyard followed by wine tasting.
We depart after breakfast to St Mary’s Airport for our flight back to the mainland.
Walks & Excursions
We use a mix of privately hired vehicles, taxis, and public transport which gives us some flexibility in our itinerary. We have a wonderful programme of walking, sightseeing and visits planned to let you fully experience the area along with opportunities to relax at our wonderful hotel and enjoy your surroundings.
Local transport costs, entrance fees and tips to local providers are included in your holiday price. You may wish to budget for any meals and drinks not included in the holiday arrangements, non-included entrance fees and any optional excursions you may choose to participate in locally. A general guideline for lunches and drinks is £10-£20 per person per day.
Local Transport Costs
We include the local travel costs using coaches to travel to and from the hotel and local boats to reach the nearby islands.
Our Adagio Leader will arrange everything. You just need to be in the right place at the right time!
The Isles of Scilly currency is the British pound. There are limited ATMs on the islands, so we advise you to bring money with you prior to arriving. There are branches of Lloyds Bank and Barclays Bank in Hugh Town.
We include tips in the holiday cost and your Adagio Leader will take care of making sure tips are given to hotel and restaurant staff and to local guides and drivers. If you feel that someone has gone out of their way to make your holiday enjoyable or help you in anyway, please feel free to give a personal tip to the person should you wish. If you are having an independent lunch or other service not included in the holiday arrangements, tipping is at your own discretion.
We believe that the best things come in small packages, and our Adagio holidays prove just that. We limit our groups to a maximum of 18 persons, plus the Adagio Leader, so that everyone has the opportunity to mix, share their love of travel and return home with new friendships. Small groups also have less detrimental local impact, allows us to use public transport on some days, eat at small local restaurants and, we believe, offers a better experience.
An Adagio Leader will accompany you throughout the holiday. They are all experienced travellers with a love for exploring and will help capture the true essence of the destination with their stories, knowledge and insights. They are well-organised, pay great attention to detail and enjoy being with people. They are there to help make your holiday as enjoyable and stress free as possible.
Leaders Evening Briefing
Your Adagio Leader will discuss the programme for the following day with the group at each evening briefing. This will be your opportunity to find out more details and ensure the planned activities suit your walking ability. Also, if you have any questions or concerns on clothing or lunch arrangements, this can be discussed then. If you wish to opt out of the organised group programme, this is fine, just let your Leader know.
Getting to your Holiday
We fly from Lands End to St Mary’s and return with Skybus. The flight takes approx. 15 minutes. Flights are also available from Newquay and Exeter at a supplement. Please ask for details at the time of booking. Please see this website for details of your baggage allowance and baggage size.
Please note, that your hold bags should not weigh more than 15kg. Excess luggage will be charged at £3 per kg. There is a bus transfer service available from Penzance railway station to Lands End Airport. The service costs £6 each way per person. If you wish to book please contact our travel department on 01707 386732 or email [email protected] The transfer takes around 20 minutes and is timed to coincide perfectly with your flight. When you arrive back at Land’s End, the bus will aim to meet you within 15 minutes. You can find information here.
We can pre-book your car parking from Land’s End Airport. If flying from Exeter or Newquay, you will need to pre-book parking via the airport websites; www.cornwallairportnewquay.com or www.exeterairport.co.uk. You may wish to look at the following website for more information on parking: https://www.islesofscilly-travel.co.uk/plan-your-trip/parking/.
We include a transfer from St Mary’s airport to the Tregarthen’s Hotel and return. The transfer time is about 10 minutes. If you intend joining and leaving the party in the Isles of Scilly, we assume, unless you have advised us otherwise, that you will meet and leave the party at the Tregarthen’s Hotel. If this is not your intention, please let us know in writing at least 5 weeks before departure.
Booking Your Own Travel Arrangements
If you wish to organise your own flights from either a non-UK or UK regional airport, or travel by rail or car to your holiday destination, 'land only' reductions are often available. If you choose to do this, before finalising any independent travel arrangements, please check with us first - especially if doing so 12 weeks or more before your intended date of travel. If you do intend to join your holiday locally please do tell us at least 14 weeks in advance.
If you are joining and leaving your holiday overseas we assume, unless you advise us otherwise, that you will join and leave the holiday at the hotel. Although airport/train station transfers are not included for those making their own independent travel arrangements, if you wish to join the group at the overseas airport/train station, depending on your flight/train arrival time, you may be able to be included on the group's transfer. Please contact us at least 5 weeks before departure for more details.
Please note that your flight/train must arrive within 30 minutes of the group flight/train to be able to join the group transfer. We also need your flight/train number, arrival time and departure point so that your Adagio Leader is able to meet up with you.
Luggage Allowance & Tickets
When booking a flight or rail inclusive holiday with us, details of your travel arrangements and baggage allowance will be confirmed in your travel documents, sent to you approximately 10 days prior to departure.
Personal Details Check
Please ensure that the personal details we have on file for you are up to date and that you have provided the information we need to secure your holiday travel and accommodation arrangements.
Please check your passport details, date of birth and any other important details necessary for us to accurately manage your holiday booking are correct at the time of booking (including health and dietry requirements). You can view and update information already provided, and add details not yet asked for, by using the Manage My Booking facility on our website www.adagio.co.uk, or by calling our Sales and Reservations team on +44 (0)1707 386700. When you receive your booking confirmation please check the details as soon as possible.
General Passport Advice
It is a good idea to carry photocopies of the personal details pages of your passport page (with your photo on). Should you lose your passport, this may assist with the issue of replacement documents and your return to your home country. Passport and visa requirements can change at any time. It is your own responsibility to ensure that you inform yourself from a professionally qualified source on, and comply with, such requirements.
Hugh Town, St Mary’s
Hugh Town, situated on the island of St Mary’s, is the largest settlement in the islands. There are several pubs, restaurants, hotels as well as two banks and a post office. Being on an isthmus, there are two beaches, the northern beach which is along the bay and forms the island’s main harbour and the southern beach named Porthcressa which offers the best swimming.
This holiday is on a half board basis. Breakfasts and evening meals will be taken in the hotel restaurant. Lunches will be at your expense and we suggest you allow at least £7 per day.
Footwear & Kit List
Comfortable, broken in, walking boots or shoes with a good sole are recommended for this holiday. Walking shoes or other comfortable footwear will be suitable for sightseeing days.
General Kit List
We recommend you bring the following items with you:
- Lightweight walking boots with ankle support (you may prefer walking shoes if you have strong ankles. No sandals.)
- Waterproof jacket and trousers. It does rain sometimes!
- A sunhat, fleece and gloves… to cover all weather eventualities.
- Sun cream in the warmer months.
- A water bottle.
- A picnic knife, fork and spoon, as required.
- A simple basic first aid kit.
- A daypack to hold all the above.
- Walking poles if you are accustomed to use them.
- Binoculars if you have them to use on the boat trips.
Water To Go
An alternative to bottled water from single-use sealed water bottles is filtered water from a refillable bottle containing its own water filter such as a Water-to-go bottle available from www.watertogo.eu. Just fill up from any water source and save the environment from disposable plastic bottles.
We have negotiated an exclusive 15% discount with our partners Water-to-Go for you as a thank you for helping the environment. Please go to their website at www.watertogo.eu and enter the code RWH17 when ordering. In addition, Water-to-Go will match the discount with a donation to our charity, Heart & Sole, which will allow us to continue to make a difference in the countries you visit on our holidays.
Travel Document Checklist
To ensure your holiday gets off to a good start, please make sure that you bring the following documents and information with you:
- Passport (make sure it's yours and valid)
- Your travel tickets or e-ticket itinerary
- Any visa or electronic travel authorisation (if required)
- Holiday currency
- 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)
- Your holiday Booking Confirmation document
- Your travel insurance details
- Alternative form of identification (such as a driving licence)
- Photocopy of the personal details pages of your passport
- A valid European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) if relevant
- Details of any medical condition or allergy your holiday leader should know about
Maps & Guidebooks
The Map Shop
If you cannot find the maps or books locally we recommend:
The Map Shop
5 High Street
Upton upon Severn, Worcs
Tel: 01684 593 146
E-mail: [email protected]
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.
Find out more
Visas and Passports
No Visa Required
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Staying Healthy on Holiday
Further Health 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.
Although insurance is not compulsory for this holiday for UK residents, we strongly recommend that you take out travel insurance to cover you in eventualities such as unexpected cancellation.
We're committed to operating responsible tours in all our destinations as best we can. Our holidays are designed for you to discover the essence of the country you are visiting. Travelling in small groups not only gives you an up close and personal experience of your destination, but minimises your impact on the immediate environment. We feel that the most important starting point to protect the environment is to be out in it. For more details visit our website.
Ramblers Holidays Charitable Trust
Unlike many tour operators we have our own trust through which RWH Travel Ltd’s (inc Adagio) profits are channelled back into a variety of outdoor, walking-related or environmental conservation projects in the UK. The focus of the Trust’s financial support is Britain’s leading walking charity, The Ramblers, and their role in promoting the benefits and importance of walking to the British public.
In addition the Trust welcomes applications for small grants from local organisations in the UK who need support for walking-orientated activities. This includes the establishment of footpaths and bridleways, funding for rebuilding bridges and renovating huts, as well as bursary funding for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award for children who could not otherwise afford to do it. Please visit the ‘About Us’ section of our website and click on the Charitable Trust link for more details.
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.
We welcome all comments about our holidays and value ideas for future holidays. If you have provided us with an email address we will invite you to complete an online questionnaire or to add feedback to our page on the independent review site 'Feefo'.
Please note that this Holiday Information sheet may be periodically updated and reissued.
In most cases the revisions will be minor and the overall nature of the holiday will remain unchanged. Should we make a major change to your holiday arrangements between you booking your holiday and your date of travel we will notify you to specifically draw your attention to any significant change.
We suggest that you may want to review the latest version of this Holiday Information Sheet online prior to travel.
Please note that any advertised offers, benefits or initiatives may be discontinued at any time.