Snowshoeing in the Catalan Pyrenees

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£1,299
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4.6 / 5 from 20 reviews >
Moderate
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Trip code: 
CAP
Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Tailormade Adventures
Activity:
Winter
Min age:
16
Group size:
4–14

Snowshoe the valleys and forests of the remote Catalan Pyrenees; enjoy traditional cuisine and local hospitality.

The Catalan Pyrenees provide a dramatic setting for snowshoeing, far away from the more frequented routes. Spreading our stay over two traditional Spanish villages we experience the beauty and tranquillity of the Pallars Sobira region, as well as its cultural heritage. Walks through ancient forests, across valleys and through tiny forgotten villages are complemented by visits to local producers of wine, cheese and wool. All this surrounded by soaring peaks and extraordinary views in the company of an expert local guide.

Highlights

  • Snowshoe the valleys and forests of Pallars Sobira
  • Walk up to high passes of the Aiguestortes National Park
  • Learn about cheese and wool production, enjoy wine tasting
  • Visit and stay in remote mountain villages

Key information

  • 7 nights traditional mountain hotels, all rooms en suite
  • 5 days guided snowshoeing
  • Group normally 4 to 14, plus leader. Min age 16 yrs
  • Snowshoes and poles provided

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 5 picnic lunches and 6 dinners included
  • All accommodation
  • Transfers for group flights
  • Snowshoes and poles

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Visas & vaccinations
  • Single supplement
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Fly to Barcelona; transfer to Rialp (approx. 3 hours)

    Fly to Barcelona; transfer to Rialp (approx. 3 hours).

     Rialp is a small village set at 725m altitude, with only 629 full time residents. The nearest evidence of visitors here is the Port Ainé ski resort about 14km away.

    Hotel Victor or similar

    Meals included: Dinner
  • Day 2

    Snowshoe the Santa Magdalena Valley; afternoon local produce and wine tasting.

    A 10 minute transfer takes us to our start point in Roni for a day exploring the Santa Magdalena Valley. Crossing deep forests and ridges we admire some of the highest peaks of Catalonia.

    The day finishes with a transfer back to our hotel (approx 20 mins), where our guide Miguel will give the group the chance to try some of the local produce, including cheese and sausages from the Pallars Sobirà region, all washed down with wine from the south of Catalonia.

    Distance: 6km/ Elevation gain: 700m/ Duration: 5 hours including breaks.
    Hotel Victor or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 3

    Explore the La Coma Valley, crossing remote villages and through the deep forests of Les Bordes de Burg; visit local cheese producer.

    The scenic village of Farrera is just a 30 minute transfer and is a great location to begin our walk. Today our route takes us through the La Coma Valley. Here we find numerous 'bordes' or shepherd's huts, used to keep cattle and store feed. Traversing first deep forests, we pass through two small villages - Farrera and Burg, both of which have fewer than 100 inhabitants. This insight into a traditional way of life in the remote countryside is what makes this walk memorable.

    After the walk we transfer to the village of Surp in the Assua Valley (30 mins) and visit cheese producer Clara Ferrando. She relocated from her home near Barcelona to set up a sustainable and traditional cheese production with her husband in 2007. We will of course have the opportunity to try some of her award-winning produce, accompanied with traditional wines of Catalonia. We then end the day with a 30 minute walk back to Rialp.

    Distance: 8km/ Elevation gain: 550m/ Duration: 6 hours including breaks.
    Hotel Victor or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    Head through the Pla de Nequa (1978m) for wonderful panoramic views; afternoon visit to local Catalan wool collective.

    For the third snowshoe walk of the week we explore the Esterri de Cardos Valley, half an hour's drive away. Again an area not well known to tourists, we enjoy dramatic landscapes on our way to Pla de Nequa 1978m. The trail crosses forests of birch, scots pines and dwarf mountain pines until we reach the peak itself and enjoy the panoramic views over the whole valley and its surrounds. Local folklore has it that this was the site of sabbath celebrations by witches during the Middle Ages. As such a well known Catalan writer based his novel 'The witches of Pla Nequa' here.

    After our walk we transfer back to Rialp (30 mins) and visit a local not-for-profit association; who try to maintain the local tradition of woolwork and thus guarantee extra revenue for the local shepherds that sell it, as well as the craftspeople that produce the woolwork itself.

    We finish with a 15 minute walk back to our hotel.

    Distance: 12km/ Elevation gain: 780m/ Duration: 6-7 hours including breaks.
    Hotel Victor or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 5

    Free day for relaxation or optional activities such as skiing, visiting the Romanesque village of Son or taking a local bus to surrounding villages of Esterri d’Àneu or Sort.

    After breakfast the rest of the day is free to relax, explore Rialp, visit Son, a Romanesque village, or head to the nearby ski resort. Rialp is also well connected to Sort and Esterri d’Àneu thanks to local bus lines.

    There is an eco museum in Esterri d’Àneu, set up in 1994 to promote eco conservation in the area that could also be possible to visit.

    Your leader will be able to advise you of your options of how best to spend your free day. 
    Hotel Victor or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Transfer to Valencia d'Aneu. Then on to Son Valley crossing the Negre forest, past the Pla de la Font hut to Fogueruix Pass at 2110m.

    This morning we drive 35 minutes to our next base, Valencia d'Aneu. After checking in and leaving the luggage, we head off to our starting point for today; Son, a nearby village at 1390m famous for its Romanesque bell tower.

    On our way to the Fogueruix Pass at 2110m, we can stop at the Pla de la Font mountain hut and crane our necks at some of the highest peaks in the area that tower above us.

    The pass itself lies between the Son Valley and the Aiguestortes National Park. We will then descend via another route back down to the Planes de Son where we began.

    Distance: 11.5km/ Elevation gain: 690m/ Duration: 6- 7 hours including breaks.
    Hotel Lo Paller or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Set off for the Eastern part of the Aiguestortes National Park. Enjoy tranquil meadows and silver fir forests following rarely used trails for spectacular views.

    The Aiguestortes National Park is known as much for its crystal clear lakes as for its snow-clad forests and mountains. This walk takes us to some of the most idyllic of these lakes as we make our way to the Sant Maurici lake.

    There are two possible walks:

    1. If the road between Espot and Sant Maurici lake is closed because there is too much snow, we will walk up to Sant Maurici and then back.

    2. If the road is open, 4x4 vehicles will drive us to Sant Maurici lake. Our loop will start there. First we will pass the Amitges mountain hut into the Amitges cirque, the highest altitude we’ll achieve this week. This amphitheatre shaped valley sits just below the giant peaks of Montsaliente (2890m), Bassiero (2903m) and Amitges (2848m).

    This area is loved by walkers and climbers, but is a gem known only to a few. The sight of these majestic mountains lying before and around us is certainly memorable.

    A 15-25 minute drive, depending on which of these options above is possible, takes us back to the hotel for our last night.

    Distance: 14.5km/ Elevation gain: 637m/ Duration: 7 hours including breaks (Espot – Sant Mauric – Espot)

    Distance: 12.3km/ Elevation gain: 600m/ Duration: 5.5 hours including breaks (Sant Mauri loop)
    Hotel Lo Paller or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    Transfer to Barcelona; fly to London.

    Transfer to Barcelona; fly to London.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Spain

No visa required for British passport holders.

Vaccinations

Spain

There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All continental breakfasts, 5 picnic lunches and 6 dinners are included.

Cuisine in the Catalan Pyrenees includes ingredients such as vegetables, legumes, pasta, pork sausages, lamb, chicken, fish, game and mushrooms.

Desserts including the famous Cream Catalana (a yellow cream dessert) and Peres de Lleida (dessert made of pears) are well known in the region.

Catalonia is an area of Spain that produces lovely white wines, strong reds and crisp rosé but the most well known is the Cava; considered the Spanish version of Champagne.

A limited amount of wine is included with dinners. Both accommodations have a reputation of producing some of the best cuisine in the High Catalan Pyrenees.

On the free day only breakfast is included. You are welcome to try out one of the restaurants in Rialp for lunch or dinner, or elsewhere, depending where you spend your free day.

On five days individual packed lunches are prepared by the hotel and carried by the group. These will normally include sandwiches, chocolate/dried fruits and fruit.

Vegetarians: Hotel Victor and Lo Paller cater well for vegetarians and other dietary requirements; please do advise the sales team when booking.

Weather

The climate in the Pallars Sobira region is Mediterranean until 1,500m and then becomes alpine at higher altitudes. In winter, a 'thermal inversion' usually occurs which is when the temperature at the bottom of the valleys is below the temperatures in higher points of the mountains that surround the valley. During winter, the temperature difference between the valleys and the higher slopes in winter is smaller than in summer and you can expect the average temperature at the bottom of the valley to be around 2 °C, while 3.5 °C at 2,000m. Rains and snowfall vary according to height. Winter is the season with fewer rain and higher altitudes have stronger snowfalls.

Catalan Pyrenees

Is this trip for you?

Activity Level 3- Moderate.

This trip consists of five moderate day walks with snowshoes as well as 3 non-walking activities. No previous snowshoe experience is necessary but a reasonable level of fitness is required.

 Altitude gain varies between 550 and 780 metres. Distances vary between 6 and 14.5km. The average number of hours walking is between 6 and 7 per day, including breaks for eating, taking photos etc.

Please be advised that the leader has the right to adapt the trail according to the weather conditions and the physical condition of the group if needed.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Mountain hotels

We divide our stay between the villages of Rialp and Valencia d'Aneu. Both are small villages in the Catalan Pyrenees mountains.

Hotel Victor
Our first hotel is Hotel Victor in Rialp. This family‐run charming hotel was founded in 1903 and has been recently restored. All rooms are en suite and very comfortable. There is free Wi‐Fi access in the hotel. Meals are prepared using local produce giving a great insight into the traditions of the area.

Hotel Lo Paller
Our second hotel is the Lo Paller mountain hotel, reconstructed from the existing building and opened as a hotel in 1993 by a local family. The en suite rooms are complemented by a lounge and garden and the ground floor houses a restaurant with a growing reputation for good quality Pyrenean cuisine. Free Wi-Fi is available.

Single supplements are available on request.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Experts

Contact a member of staff who has done this trip

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

Embracing a healthy lifestyle can be a challenge, but if you’re going to keep it up there’s got to be more to it than

  • Reviewed February 2018
    Dave Young

    Snowshoeing, wine, cheese, culture and much more in the Catalan Pyrenees

    This was a superb trip for me. As well as enjoying the snowshoeing I learned so much from the group leader about Catalonia - its wildlife, history, language, culture and the current political situation. The remote mountain villages were charming and the scenery magnificent, especially after an unusually heavy snowfall. The hospitality everywhere was excellent and I especially enjoyed the local wines and delicious ewe's milk cheeses. The large glasses of brandy were also wonderfully warming after a cold day out in the mountains .

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Meeting a local cheese producer who had moved from Barcelona to make a new life for herself and her family in a remote mountain village. She now lives in a lovely large house with magnificent views across the valley and spends her days making the most wonderful cheeses. She is so passionate about my favourite food and richly deserves all the awards she has won for her produce.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Miguel is very friendly, knowledgeable and always keen to improve his spoken English. Each day we snowshoed in a different area so that we saw as much as possible and experienced different types of terrain. We were fortunate in having excellent weather most days and an exceptionally heavy snowfall at the beginning of the trip. I loved all that deep, fresh snow but it made it very challenging for Miguel to re-plan routes to cope with much deeper snow than expected as well as a large and diverse group. In the circumstances, I think he did a great job. I agree with other reviewers that a smaller group would have been better, but then the cost per person would have been much higher.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Before booking, study the trip notes giving details of the proposed duration, distance and amount of ascent / descent each day to check the trip is appropriate for your level of fitness and experience of walking in steep terrain. Also, vegetarians should be vigilant. Although the meals were generally excellent, two dishes described as vegetarian actually contained pieces of chorizo and bacon.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I especially enjoyed the variety this trip provided. It's an excellent combination of snowshoeing with a range of other activities and experiences.
  • Reviewed February 2018
    Steve & Dianne Fletcher

    Plenty of snow in remote Pyrenees valleys

    We had a great week snowshoeing in plentiful deep snow, staying in very comfortable and welcoming hotels, particularly Hotel Victor in Rialp. The family there made every effort to accommodate our varied and various needs always with a smile. The fresh deep snow made it difficult for the group to complete the planned walks every day, but this really was not necessary - the pleasure of being out in untouched snow with no-one in sight all day was the thing. Miguel our leader had built several cultural extras into the programme which added considerably to the interest .

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Sun shining on deep untouched snow on the day walking above Son.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Miguel had to cope with a combination of a group with diverse abilities and experiences in a week with more snow than usual which made logistics and completing the planned walks difficult. Given this he did a good job of trying to ensure that as many people as possible completed as much as possible of the advertised programme. He clearly loves his country (Catalonia!) and the mountains and went out of his way to share this enthusiasm with us.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Understand that the degree of challenge involved is very dependent on the snow and weather conditions. The depth of soft snow we had meant the effort involved was 50% to 100% more than in conditions of less or no snow. Also experience of walking in the hills in varied weather conditions is desirable. Be prepared for long days out in very cold conditions.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The group size was too big - we had to walk in single file making it impossible for Miguel to talk to the whole group at the same time, and also slowed us down. More advice could have been given to inexperienced snowshoers.
  • Reviewed February 2018
    Steve & Dianne Fletcher

    Plenty of snow in remote Pyrenees valleys

    We had a great week snowshoeing in plentiful deep snow, staying in very comfortable and welcoming hotels, particularly Hotel Victor in Rialp. The family there made every effort to accommodate our varied and various needs always with a smile. The fresh deep snow made it difficult for the group to complete the planned walks every day, but this really was not necessary - the pleasure of being out in untouched snow with no-one in sight all day was the thing. Miguel our leader had built several cultural extras into the programme which added considerably to the interest .

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Sun shining on deep untouched snow on the day walking above Son.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Miguel had to cope with a combination of a group with diverse abilities and experiences in a week with more snow than usual which made logistics and completing the planned walks difficult. Given this he did a good job of trying to ensure that as many people as possible completed as much as possible of the advertised programme. He clearly loves his country (Catalonia!) and the mountains and went out of his way to share this enthusiasm with us.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Understand that the degree of challenge involved is very dependent on the snow and weather conditions. The depth of soft snow we had meant the effort involved was 50% to 100% more than in conditions of less or no snow. Also experience of walking in the hills in varied weather conditions is desirable. Be prepared for long days out in very cold conditions.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The group size was too big - we had to walk in single file making it impossible for Miguel to talk to the whole group at the same time, and also slowed us down. More advice could have been given to inexperienced snowshoers.
  • Reviewed February 2018
    Sonia Newman

    Snowshoeing in the Catalan Pyrenees

    This was a wonderful trip to the Catalan Pyrenees. The snow conditions were excellent - too much if anything, making some of the snowshoeing hard work. The food and drink at the hotels was great, allowing us to try local Catalan food. Our guide Miguel went out of his way to provide an interesting experience and impart his knowledge of the local area.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking up through trees on day three in the cold, snow everywhere, with the sun shining and with glimpses of high peaks was magical.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The leader was excellent - an experienced mountain guide. He was very friendly and had a good knowledge of the history of the local area, taking us to interesting sites as well as the snowshoeing. He also arranged samplings of local produce and organised a night at a tapas bar on the rest day, which was fun.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Yes, the walking is up and down mountains and they will enjoy it more if they are fit and have experience of hillwalking.
  • Reviewed February 2018
    Andy LEWIS

    Fantastic first snowshoeing trip - snow, scenery, and guide all top notch. Loved it.

    This was my first snowshoeing trip and I enjoyed it immensely. The huge amount of fresh snow and mountainous terrain made it hard work at times but it was exactly what I was looking for. In fact, it exceeded my expectations. Gorgeous scenery, great hotels and food, an excellent and engaging guide, and sociable and entertaining fellow snowshoers all made for a great trip. The walking routes and attractions visited (e.g. cheese maker in a mountain village, the civil war destroyed village of Tirvia) were well-chosen for variety and to show some of the history and current way of life in this part of Catalunya. Miguel our guide was a mine of information, clearly passionate about the region, and an excellent tour leader. Beware: Before deciding to book this type of trip you need to be sure that you're fit enough. It's far from a walk in the Surrey Hills in summertime. The Pyrenees are high, steep, cold, and (thankfully when I was there) deep in snow, and the hikes quite long. One or two in the group didn't seem to be aware of this and our guide had to make the difficult decision to arrange some less demanding walks for them.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking in thigh-deep snow and seeing the sun come out and the clouds part and the high mountains of the Pyrenees come into view. Magic!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Miguel our guide was a mine of information on the history and socio-economic aspects of the area, clearly passionate about the region, engaging and sociable, extremely well-organized, and generally an excellent tour leader. Beware: Before deciding to book this type of trip you need to be sure that you're fit enough. It's far from a walk in the Surrey Hills in summertime. The Pyrenees are high, steep, cold, and (thankfully when I was there) deep in snow, and the hikes quite long. One or two in the group didn't seem to be aware of this and were not sufficiently fit, so our guide had to make the difficult decision to arrange some less demanding walks for them. This caused some friction in the group, but I, and others in the group, fully supported him in this.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    See above about fitness level required.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I think the group max size of 14 is too many. 8-10 is more manageable. Exodus should make it clearer to potential clients that this can be demanding walking, esp if the snow is deep, and that a good level of fitness is required.
  • Reviewed February 2018
    Beryl Bronner

    Snowshoeing: Catalan Pyrenees

    This was a good snow shoeing holiday in the Catalan pyrenees.We had a huge amount of snow but Miguel followed the itinerary as close as he could with the limitations imposed on us by the weather and depth of snow. We also learnt through some visits about the culture and history of the area which was interesting.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Good achieving our goal to a col one day .

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Miguel is a good leader and provided us with information regarding the area and culture of which he was knowledgeable and passionate. He was very organized and helpful when anyone had a query which he resolved effectively. Also the cheese and wine evening which he provided was a thoughtful touch.
  • Reviewed February 2018
    Anne Ambrose

    Not one for beginners

    The walks are challenging and not for beginners.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking through virgin snow

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The group leader has designed challenging walks and he wants to complete the itinerary as published.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This is not a trip for those new to snowshoeing.
  • Reviewed February 2018
    ANDREW GRUN

    SNOWSHOEING IN THE CATALAN PYRENEES

    HOLIDAY REVIEW CATALONIAN PYRENEES Dates 21/1/18 to 28/1/18 Leader: Miguel Ibanez We stayed in two towns in the Catalan mountains called Rialp and Esterri d’Aneu. They were surrounded by wonderful snow covered peaks. The towns were in deep, wooded, rocky valleys with high cliffs and fast flowing rivers. The scenery was wild, rugged and beautiful. Ancient villages perched on the steep slopes of the surrounding mountains. It was a pleasure to explore their old narrow streets. Vultures were often flying above when the wind blew, or sunshine caused rising air currents for them to soar on, without flapping their wings. I saw up to 14 flying together in circles in one group. I also saw 7 herons fishing together early in the morning on a lake in the main valley. There were also two red kites flying together. These have been supplied to the Chiltern hills in Britain, north west of London, where they are now flourishing and spreading in territory. Our snowshoes allowed us to quickly gain height through the forest and reach view points higher up to see the wider landscape. The new snow in the forest made beautiful patterns on the branches of the trees. Hotel Victor in Rialp provided delicious food and was kept spotlessly clean. Our hotel in Esterri d’Aneu was spacious and provided beautiful views of the surrounding snow covered mountains from the big windows on the top floor. The food was excellent. Leader Miguel was a very friendly and helpful person, who was very eager to make the holiday go well, and provide any help when needed. He provided a wealth of information about the history of the area, and arranged very enjoyable wine and cheese tasting sessions. Our bus driver Mario drove very carefully on the difficult mountain roads, with professional skill, which was much admired. We flew back over the Pyrenees in very clear air and saw the great mountain range covered in snow, laid out below us, stretching away into the distance for hundreds of kilometres. It was a wonderful sight and a great end to a wonderful holiday. Andrew Grun

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing the snow covered mountains of the Pyrenees and the ancient villages perched on the steep slopes of the mountains.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very friendly and helpful. Very keen to ensure that the holiday went well for everyone.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Need to be fit and to bring good outdoor clothing to protect against wind and snow.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Beautiful rugged landscape and ancient villages to explore and photograph. Very peaceful in Winter with few tourists.
  • Reviewed February 2018
    Angela Fenwick

    Snow shoe walking in the Catalan Pyrenees

    I really enjoyed my holiday: I have never been away in the snow before - choosing to go south for better weather - and was pleasantly surprised at how much the environment drew me in. I can't highlight enough the beauty of the area. We had a few days of quite warm weather with some snow and then the last two days, after heavy snow fall, were just magical: the sound and silence of the snow was mesmerising and I will never forget it. Our group leader, Miguel, inspired confidence and was attentive to all our disparate needs. The first hotel (Victor) was really lovely (great food and hospitality); the second was not so good, but this was found at the last minute after our scheduled hotel had a fire. Overall a great week from which I returned calm and rejuvenated.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    It is difficult to pinpoint any one inspirational moment. Each day we went on walks that inspired me and the group leader organised visits to people who were doing inspirational things in the Pyrenees to create work and keep traditional crafts going. I found the rhythm of the walks rather meditative, especially in the snow: soothing, uplifting and inspiring, whilst at the same time being quite hard at times.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    I have been on a number of Exodus holidays and have high expectations of the group leaders. Miguel did not disappoint: he designed very different walks each day; was attentive to all our very different needs and never failed to inspire us with his love of the mountains. I think it is really difficult to run these types of group holidays where, inevitably, people have different levels of fitness etc. Two of our group were unable to join us for the majority of the walks but Miguel organised other walks for them to do each day. We had a day off and he spent lots of time helping everyone to organise things to do. Over and above the walks he engaged us in the local history, environment etc which enhanced our understanding of this beautiful area.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Relax and enjoy it.... Don't worry if you haven't snow shoed before: you will get used to it in a couple of days! Make sure you are fit to climb: I broke a toe a few days before we went so did struggle a little sometimes.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Thanks to everyone for making it a memorable week.
  • Reviewed March 2017
    Jennifer Child

    Snowshoeing in the Catalan Pyrenees

    Excellent walking. The guide (Miguel) made the most of the great weather so that we could make the most of the walking available. The views were spectacular and the snow was good at the higher levels of the walks. We walked from the start of some walks in snowshoes but did have to carry them on some days at the start or end of the walk. We also had some great activities after the walks, A wine and local food tasting, a visit & tasting at a local cheese maker's small dairy and a local wool centre.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Reaching 2500m in the Aiguestortes National Park. The scenery was spectacular with great views of the Needles of Amitges. This was only achieved due to great weather conditions & drive-able road conditions to the start.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Miguel worked hard to plan the best walks for the conditions. He is knowledgeable about the area and very enthusiastic. He also acted as an interpreter on our day off for a visit to a local museum & tapas bar.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    You should have a rucksack capable of carrying snowshoes if needed. There were no shutters or anything to block out light in our room at Lo Paller.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Food was good during the trip and rooms comfortable. Particularly loved the stay at Casa Macia.

Dates & Prices

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An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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Call us on 020 8772 3936