Day 5 - the big walk (Aaron Millar)
Day 5 - the big walk (Aaron Millar) 
Route summary
£995.00 (2017)
Per person
8 nights
8 B&B, 5 evening meals, 6 picnics
Luggage transfers between hotels
Medium - Hard
4-8 hrs
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Route summary
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Customer feedback
Ligurian Hills (Italy)
Across the Apennines to the sea
Customer comments

For independent client reviews submitted to AITO (The Association of Independent Tour Operators) click here.

 

"We were overwhelmed by the kindness and level of service we received from every hotel - thank you!" September '16

 

"This walking holiday was for us an adventure. More challenging than we expected but we are all very satisfied. The landscape was magnificent and the service and food, excellent" August '16

 

"I liked the isolation of the route and the variation in countryside. The days from Varzi and Due Ponti are my favourites but all days are wonderful. The views from the high routes are stunnng and something I will never forget." August '16

 

"Beautiful scenery, very quiet and remote. The friendliness of the Locanda Romana. The wonderful food at Albergo Caprile. Arabella's kindness in making us sandwiches when we arrived, having failed to get anything at the station in Milan. Thank you!" July '16

 

"We had a competely wonderful holiday. The walking was fantastic - very varied landscapes, magnificent views, lots of shade because of the gorgeous woods, long days but all manageable. A really good sense of acheivement by the end. All of the organisation provided by On Foot was excellent. Thank you for a truly wonderful holiday and we are looking forward to our next route!" June '16

 

"The route was stunningly beautiful - I could go on but you already know what a beautiful walk it is! I must say that we really appreciated traveling in our own company at our own pace; it is so good to enjoy silence sometimes!" June '16

 

"This was our first On Foot so I can't compare. We loved the route and variety between accommodation as it was all good but for slightly different reasons. We had a great start with Paul and Arabella and a great conclusion at Camogli. My husband has always been keen to do this walk so he was not disposed to be critical. I however, was less convinced until I actually did it and then I was completely won over and would happily do another. In fact, I'm almost afraid to repeat the experience somewhere else in case it's not so good!" May '16 

 

"We loved the variety of walking terrain and the environment. We loved the friendly welcome at every stop, however we did not like the noisy cuckoo that followed us all the way!" May '16

 

"It was a wonderful holiday, thanks. The walks were quite challenging but spectacular. Overall the places to stay and the food and wine were excellent, and everyone was very welcoming." September '15

 

"Thank you very much for another absolutley wonderful holiday! We hugely enjoyed ouer walk, which you have planned brilliantly. Excellent route descriptions and the MotionX GPS mapped route was a very helpful back up at one or two tricky points. We were pleased that we followed your advice to have an extra night with Paul at Villa Arabella, and a day in Pavia." September '15

 

"We think this may be our favourite route- the long days were excellent and the views outstanding. we enjoyed the remoteness in the early days- highly recommend!" September '15

 

"I loved the walk and all the variation in the Italian countryside. Also the accommodation made it feel a very special holiday. The food, wine and service were outstanding. I felt a little sad every morning leaving my hosts as I genuinely felt I was made so welcome and I had got to know them.
I thought the walk was challenging and when completed I felt a great sense of achievement. The weather was also great (unusual for me!!) and I will never forget this walk. I will have no hesitations doing it again.

Many thanks to everyone at On Foot and on the route. I will be doing this walk again!!" August '15

 

"We were made so welcome at Paul and Arabella's beautiful home and after a cup of tea we had a welcome swim in their lovely pool.  We were invited to have an aperitif with them and were treated to some local sparkling wine with antipasti, sitting under cover but outdoors at a table set out for royalty!! There then followed a most delicious candlelit meal.  They are charming, generous and solicitous hosts.  We said that nothing in the coming days could meet up with their standard and Paul said "just wait and see!"  He was right .... nearly." June '15

 

"We had a nice welcome from Daniella and her mother and we purchased some of their delicious ice creams which tasted wonderful after the hot and tiring journey." June '15

 

"Great welcome from Paulo who showed us to our rooms which were clean and simple.  We went down to have a drink and he kindly gave us quantities of crisps and nuts to replace our salt reserves!!  Supper was a wonderful experience with many dishes of antipasti, then a choice of pasta dishes and then meat.  The great surprise was when the lights went out and Paulo wheeled in a trolley laden with a huge cake and candles and a bottle of bubbly ... He had set his mobile phone to play Happy Birthday.  A wonderful touch. " June '15

 

"There was another Instance of kindness when one of the ladies who worked at the Albergo picked a bag of lettuce for one of our party and gave her a hug .... A warmth we often found on our trip, perhaps because we were away from the tourist hot spots.  We felt that our hosts genuinely enjoyed meeting us.  Great breakfasts at this Albergo, including scrambled eggs and fruit.  Generous packed lunch." June '15

 

"What we liked most:  the beauty and peace of the landscape, the wild flowers and birdsong, the friendliness of all our hosts, the opportunity to eat in situ and to experience local cuisine.
What we liked least: nothing.

 

"We had a fantastic time: the walk was great, the food was perfect and, from an anthropological point of view, it was tremendously fun to meet such interesting and welcoming characters along the way. I think it's also good to say that finishing at the Dogi hotel in Camogli was really very, very nice. We especially enjoyed turning up at the reception covered in mud and in need of showers in the middle of a very fancy wedding party ;-) High point was our walks between Varzi and Villa Tiffany and arriving in Camogli. Honestly can't think of any low points: it was a very special time." May '15

 

"We were slightly worried about the length of the days before we left but actually we found the terrain so breath taking and the walks so beautiful that we loved the walks and the length wasn't an issue. I'm always amazed at the amount of information that On Foot supplies - its one of the reasons we come back to you. The detail is excellent and informative without being overwhelming." July '14

 

"We had a fabulous time in Italy walking the Ligurian Hills. Our 5th holiday with you and each one has been different, but equally well organised, carefully planned and you are so helpful!  Thanks so much for helping us to link up with our contact, Paul, in Italy when our plane was so delayed at Bristol airport." June '14

 

"The entire trip was excellent-it exceeded our expectations. The walking route was well-planned and challenging, with such an interesting change of terrain in the different regions. The views were stunning, day after day.  We enjoyed the variety of lodging, from B & Bs to small hotels. We always felt that our hosts were awaiting our arrival and eager to make us comfortable.  (In Varzi, Romana came into the street to welcome us!)  It was such a pleasure to stay in family-run hotels that take pride in providing good service.  Camogli was an excellent place to end the trip." May '14

 

"We loved the detailed information, and we felt confident with your good organization. We loved the remoteness of this hike and the opportunity to meet local folk and eat regional cuisine. We felt no stress because everything was so well organized and it allowed us to enjoy what we enjoy the most....the walking!" Sep '13

 

"Hello everyone. I hope this season for OnFoot has been wonderful. Anyway, at last I can write something to tell you how wonderful my walk was. Sorry it has taken me so long to say thank you but I hit the ground running when I got off the plane from London. Here are my thoughts.

 

"OnFootHolidays has created something very very special with their hike in the Ligurian hills of Italy.  It is certainly not for the slow of foot or faint of heart, since your shortest day is 17 kilometers, but the hard work is worth it. I don't remember having as much FUN as I did on this walk, probably because I met so many wonderful amusing people on the way, even in the woods.  Usually by day three of my walks I think to myself, "Why can't I be a normal person and spend my holiday lying on a beach somewhere, reading a bad romance novel and drinking gin and tonic.  Why I am struggling up this hill with another fifty hills ahead of me before I get supper?".  Then I get to the top and a panorama of the Italian hills fills my vision and the clouds are scudding by and there is the smell of mown hay and the buzzing of  insects and the singing of birds and yes, this is why I take these fantastic walks.

Surreptitously eating purple grapes off a local vine, hearing church bells far far away ringing in the village where I started two hours ago, reading 'Thin Path's at night in my farmhouse room, eating the most stupendous food night after night, getting lost at a crossroads and asking an ancient old man and his ancient old dog for assistance, walking in mountain woods where the side of the path is a steep, terrifying drop and the path is barely wider than my boot, bumping into two elderly well-dressed ladies early one morning searching for mushrooms in the forest way up in the middle of nowhere--I mean nowhere--and giving them directions to the path back to civilization, reaching the sea at last and wishing I could do it all again.  It was truly glorious.  The memories that come flooding back will sustain me all winter. So I am going to do it all over again...next spring.  I will train harder so 26 kilometers isn't an impossibility and I will know the challenges ahead.  This part of the world is a miracle, a treasure, something to savor slowly and that is what a walk always lets you do.  I can't not go back to this place. Thank you OnFoot for creating this splendid walk and thank you to Paul and Arabella for creating an atmosphere from the very first minute one arrives of  feasting and fellowship that stays with one through the whole hard and joyful week. Cheers,  Amy (Amy has been doing our holidays as single walker for many years. We have a picture of her on our office wall, with a St Bernard, on one of her first walks in the French Alps!). Sep '13

 

"Hi I've been meaning to email you giving you feedback from our walk in the Ligurian Hills. We had a wonderful holiday, thank you for all your help making it happen. We were blessed with fine weather everyday, which made for a wonderful walk. Our hosts every evening were wonderful producing fantastic meals and accommodation.

 

"On the first two days it was delightful walking along the country lanes, through fields and woodlands. The roadsides were edged with flowering grasses and shrubs, which reminded of the lanes of my youth in Cleveland. The following days through the uplands were equally lovely, with so many wild flowers, we spent lots of time botanising along the way. By the time we got down to the Albergo Caprile in Calcinara we realised that we only had one more day of walking and were quite sad that our walking trip was going to be ending." June '13

 

"We had the nicest walk ever and will write a detailed note to you on our return to Canada and will certainly recommend the walk to friends who like this activity. We'll follow up with a more extensive commentary on our trip when we're back in Canada and on trip advisor.  But for now, please be assured that we had a wonderful experience.  This is without question the best walk we have done to date:  superb natural setting, terrific hospitality, wonderful food, and some challenging days.  You've really created something special here that we would highly recommend to our friends.” May '13

 

"Lovely people, great food, flowers (including millions of lovely crocuses where the snow had just melted), and birds. We saw our first wryneck and a red-rumped swallow. Wonderful birdsong." April '13

 

"What a splendid walk that was. All the places we stayed in, and our hosts, were lovely in their very diifferent ways. Vive la difference. The walk itself was superb, though we have to take your word for it that the views on the last two days were fine - it poured with rain and we were in the clouds both days. The best walk we've been on." April '13

 

"Many thanks for organising last week. A really good time in all respects." Oct '12

 

"Just as an aside. I didn’t know what to expect with the dogs in Italy. However the Italians are definitely more canineophilic than the British. No problems anywhere. One of the selling points for the Ligurian way might be what a fantastic dog walk it is". Oct '12

 

"We had a fantastic and unforgettable holiday and have been dining out on it, recommending it to others, ever since. We were spectacularly (we thought) lucky with the weather and didn't need to shorten our days. The hospitality was incredible and we wondered if hosts had been 'primed' as it was a new route. They were all very generous both in terms of excellent dinners and lunches and charging phones where our adaptor failed to match up. Routes and mapping were pretty tight, though a compass proved helpful in the forest on day 3 after we failed to locate an essential picnic table. Our only anxiety with the holiday is that we'll never be that lucky again! It was just great." Oct '12