The Lake Districts magnificent autumn colours

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This holiday - chosen to show off the magnificent colours of autumn in an area which is renowned for it's fabulous walking, is a joy to the senses.

Set in Newby Bridge - on the edge of the south end of Lake Windermere, surely one of the UK'S most lovely walking destinations, we experience the glory of this area and the colours that tease the senses and leave you wanting more.

See the hotels web site -

Rooms for sole occupancy. Dinner, bed and breakfast tariff 




Your hotel

We stay at the Newby Bridge Hotel

Sole occupancy rooms with no single supplement

Dinner , bed and breakfast.

Lunch is normally in a lovely country pub, but dsependent on walk choices - it may be a picnic lunch.

The Newby Bridge Hotel was originally known as the Newby Bridge Mansion. It was built in 1793 by James Machel, whose family had been prominent in the area since the 12th Century when Ulf the Machel was the local laird. Newby Bridge Mansion was one of the first great houses to be built on the shores of Lake Windermere.
The Machels were friendly with William Wordsworth and copies of correspondence with the great poet are displayed at the hotel, including a poem by Wordsworth “To Lizzie” which is dedicated to one of the Machel children. The literary connection has continued through the years, as Arthur Ransome, author of Swallows and Amazons was also a frequent visitor to the hotel.

Your walking programme



 Our fabulous hotels position allows us to walk straight from the hotel door and access our trails and to take in fabulous views all day long.


Our holiday  is graded moderate with some short, steep ascents and descents and is for people who are good walkers. We will undertake walks of between 8 and 10 miles with an average ascent of around 500 metres which we will do at a lovely, relaxed pace to allow you to absorb everything around us. 


We will take transport to other areas close by such as Coniston and Hawkshead.

Walking on Monday afternoon, Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday with a walk until lunch time on Friday.


Whats included

What you get on a Secret Hills break

  • Hotel bed and breakfast– en suite
  • Sole occupancy- no single supplement
  • Three course dinner
  • Lunch
  • Personal service
  • Expert guiding
  • Transport to walks start if necessary
  • Flexibility
  • A social, relaxed approach
  • No single supplement
  • Joining details prior to the holiday
  • Administration support from reservation to the date of your holiday


Holiday highlights

Fabulous Autumn scenery- the russets, browns and oranges that make our Lake District autumn so vibrant

- Simply superb vista's every day.

- Some of the best walking in this country

- Lovely country house hotel and fabulous food.

- No single supplement 

- Our relaxed social approach

- Meet new friends that turn into old friends

Great reasons to join us

Great reasons to join us

There are other walking holiday companies that cover the Lake District but we believe we offer the best value for many reasons….

  • We are a small friendly company
  • We have a loyal customer base who return again and again (so we must be doing something right) – read our testimonials page on the website
  • We offer a lot of flexibility – you can stay extra nights which we are happy to organise for you. We are also very flexible on the walks we provide, adapting to suit walkers and weather conditions
  • Our walk leading is second to none. Unlike some other large Walking Companies, we use LOCAL leaders who live in the area and who love their surroundings. They have expert knowledge of everything you need to know to make an area come alive.
  • You are safe in our hands – our guides are experts, fully qualified in first aid. Also, because of their local knowledge of the hills, they can respond to any situation that might for example demand cutting short a route. They don’t need to consult maps – they know the hills intimately.
  • Our leaders are all easy-going, genuinely sociable people who want to ensure that you have the best time you can with the rest of the group. They make the weekend fun by engaging with all members of a group, and ensuring that everyone feels part of the group experience.
  • We give great value for money. Because we recognise that lots of walkers holiday on their own, we have negotiated no single supplement deals with all our hotels to ensure the best possible deal.
  • We always use good hotels. Our hotel in the beautiful Borrowdale is set in lovely surroundings  and the standard is really good.
  • We have smaller groups than some of the larger walking companies, because we believe the social experience is much better in a smaller group. People can talk to everyone, especially at dinner where you can all sit on one table in a small group. Our numbers vary from holiday to holiday but an average group size would be 8-12.


The area around Newby Bridge

Newby Bridge, once a part of Lancashire, is a small village adjoining the River Leven at the southern end of Lake Windermere. It got its name from the five-arched stone bridge built across the river in 1651. It caters mainly for the passing tourist trade, and has a railway station on the preserved Lakeside & Haverthwaite Railway. Newby Bridge is a convenient base to explore the Furness peninsula and southern Lakeland areas.

Lakeside Pier is at the southern end of Englands largest lake, Windermere, where you can arrive by boat from Waterhead or Bowness. There is also a ferry across the short distance to the National Trust’s garden at Fell Foot.

Lakeside Pier is one end of the Lakeside and Haverthwaite Railway, in which you can travel by steam train 3.5 miles via Newby Bridge to Haverthwaite, along the old Furness line that used to go to Ulverston and Barrow.

Here also is the Aquarium of the Lakes, where you can discover in over 30 displays the fascinating and often secret world of wildlife and freshwater creatures dwelling in and alongside these magnificent waters.
The English Heritage owned Stott Park Bobbin Mill is only a short walk away, at Finsthwaite.
The area around offers much to see and do, whether it is a gentle stroll around one of the nearby villages such as Cartmel or Hawkshead for a look around the quaint shops, or a more energetic fell walk or cycling. Graythwaite Hall Gardens are on the road from Newby Bridge to Hawkshead.


What our clients say

Francis Leary - Lakes Autumn, October 2019.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Really enjoyed the guided walking experienced, being guided in an area we were unfamiliar on different paths and routes was extremely enjoyable. I would recommend Secret walks for the Lakes and would also return. Please pass our thanks back to Jill, her local knowledge shown through and was a pleasure to be with for the week.

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Our Promise To You
You matter to us & we promise to provide you with a superb walking & social holiday, tailored specifically to your needs. We provide walking holidays for walkers & as walkers ourselves, we appreciate & understand the requirements of a walking holiday.

What Others Said...

Hotel was good. Room very spacious, clean with good storage i.e Hanging space and shelves. Bathroom clean with very powerful shower. Staff were always friendly and extremely pleasant and helpful. Being a vegetarian, I found plenty that I liked. The salad bar was good and and pizzas were delicious I wasn't sure how difficult the walking would be and although I went with the idea of doing the strolling option, I really enjoyed the challenge and satisfaction of completing the walking The whole holiday was extremely well organised from flight bookings and information to the everyday planning of the walks. Safety was a priority - because of the rain, an alternative walk was planned to replace the scheduled one. I enjoyed the new experiences and meeting a great group of people and knowledgeable guides in Alan, Katya and Luca.

Brenda Limer - Slovenia September 2017