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Activity Grades

Our grading guidelines should give you a better idea of what to expect on your trip; how challenging the activity (or activities) will be. The grade applies to the overall intensity of the holiday, so some days may be a little tougher than stated and some a little bit easier.

You know your own capabilities best, so whilst we are all for challenging yourself, it is very important to consider your fitness and experience carefully while selecting a trip.

The activity grade will help you choose the right adventure, and enjoy it comfort and safety (whilst having a lot of fun). If you have any questions or concerns, we're always here to offer advice.

Easy Walking

Easy

Daily Distance: 0-8km (0-5 miles)

Short distances on low level, relatively flat paths that are well maintained and easy to follow. Perfect for those with little or no previous experience of walking holidays, or those looking for a relaxing experience. Browse Easy Walking Holidays.

Easy - Moderate Walking

Easy - Moderate

Daily Distance: 8-16 km (5-10 miles)

Some longer distances on varied terrain but mostly well-maintained trails, and/or quiet country roads and paths. Some ascent and descent but nothing too strenuous. Perfect for those with a relatively good level of fitness, browse Easy - Moderate holidays.

Moderate Walking

Moderate

Daily Distance: 16-20 km (10-12 miles)

Longer distances on rugged and varied terrain with regular steep ascents and descents. Ideal for regular walkers with a good level of fitness or beginners looking for a challenge. Browse our Moderate walking holidays

Moderate - Strenuous Walking

Moderate - Strenuous

Daily Distance: 20-24 km (12-15 miles) 

Long days with significant and consistent steep ascent and descents on varied terrain which is often rugged underfoot, requiring a good level of fitness. There may be some exposed sections that require a head for heights. Navigation could be more difficult in poor weather conditions. Browse Moderate - Strenuous walking holidays here.

Strenuous Walking

Strenuous

Daily Distance: 24-28 km (15-17 miles)

Full days on challenging terrain, distances, ascents and descents suited for experienced walkers with a high level of fitness. Terrain is rough and could be Alpine or mountainous in nature and remote. Possibility of exposed sections and/or sections with cables/chains/ladders to aid ascent and descent, a head for heights is required. Navigation could be challenging in poor weather conditions and some trips may include higher altitudes. Browse Strenuous grade holidays.

Extreme Walking

Extreme

Daily Distance: +28km (+17miles)

Designed for very fit hikers looking for their next challenge; a head for heights, a sure foot and experience required. Rough, mountainous terrain including narrow scree and rocky paths, light scrambling, exposure and use of cables/chains/ladders to aid ascent and descent. Navigation could be challenging in poor weather conditions. Location may be remote, with extreme temperatures, weather and high altitudes adding to the challenge on these Extreme grade holidays.

Easy Cycling

Daily Distance: Less than 30km (18 miles)

Ideal for beginners on their first cycling holiday, or those who simply wish to take it easy. There’s plenty of time to explore en route with daily distances under 30 km. Sometimes there will be an occasional longer day, on almost completely flat or slightly rolling terrain. You will either be cycling on dedicated cycle path/routes or on quiet country roads, coming onto busier town roads only to reach your accommodation. Browse Easy cycling holidays.

Easy - Moderate Cycling

Easy - Moderate Grade Cycling

Daily Distance: 30-40km (18-25 miles)

Perfect for occasional riders seeking to discover a region from the saddle, and comfortable riding up to 40 km / 25 miles each day over a few consecutive days. Shorter daily mileages allow time to stop and take in the scenery, visit wineries, museums or stop for a long lunch before arriving at your destination. You may be cycling on dedicated cycle paths or quiet country roads with very occasional stretches on busier roads. Terrain will be largely easy-going but may be rolling or include 1 or 2 short steeper ascents/descents. View more Easy - Moderate cycling trips.

Moderate Cycling

Moderate Grade Cycling

Daily Distance: 40–65 km (25 – 40 miles)

Designed for relatively fit regular cyclists seeking an active holiday. Spend much of the day in the saddle experiencing a region and discovering its variety over longer daily distances. The terrain will be varied, and usually rolling with some longer or steeper ascents/descents on quiet country roads with the occasional short stretch on busier roads through towns. View Moderate graded cycling.

Moderate - Strenuous Cycling

Moderate - Strenuous Cycling

Daily Distance: 65–80 km (40–50 miles)

For regular cyclists, looking for a sense of achievement at the end of the day. Comfortable with longer distances, taking in rolling and hillier terrain with occasional steep ascents/descents and some longer ascents/descents on largely low gradients. Cycle largely on quiet country roads while being comfortable on busier stretches where necessary. Browse some Moderate to Strenuous holidays.

Strenuous Cycling

Strenuous Cycling

Daily Distance: 80–100 km (50–62 miles)

Ideal for fit cyclists who relish hill climbs and look forward to snaking descents on switchback roads. Most trips in this grade are road cycling tours for experienced riders who enjoy consecutive days of long and hilly riding with up to approximately 1000 m per day. You should have a degree of bike handling skills and be comfortable on long/steep ascents/descents. Riding is on quiet country roads wherever possible but there maybe stretches of busier roads particularly as you pass through or cycle into towns or cities. Browse Strenuous grade trips.

Extreme Cycling

Extreme Cycling

Daily Distance: Over 100 km (over 62 miles)

For the experienced, very fit road cyclist keen to test themselves, comfortable on a variety of road types and has good bike handling skills – particularly on steep ascents/descents. Excellent stamina will allow you to enjoy consecutive challenging days in the saddle. Expect alpine cols and daily ascents which could be up to 2500 m; trips in this category include ascents of the iconic Mont Ventoux and road cycling in the Pyrenees on Tour de France routes.

Important Notes on Walking Grades

All walking grades are based not only on daily distances, but also on terrain, elevation gain and loss and altitude. Not all distances are exact within the grading system but are designed to be a guideline and best represent the trip’s level. For example, a trip with approximately 20km per day could be graded moderate rather than moderate to strenuous because the terrain is almost completely flat, or a trip with daily distances around 23km km per day could be graded as strenuous is there are some steep hill to negotiate along the way. Ask your specialist if you have any concerns at all about selecting the right trip.

Important Note on Cycling Grades

All cycling grades are based not only on daily distances, but also on terrain, elevation gain and loss and altitude. Not all distances are exact within the grading system but are designed to be a guideline and best represent the trip’s level. For example, a trip with approximately 55km per day could be graded easy to moderate rather than moderate because the terrain is almost completely flat, or trip with daily distances around 40 km per day could be graded moderate as it is particularly hilly. Ask your specialist if you have any concerns at all about selecting the right trip.

  • Anonymous 09/09/2021
    Accomodations were top notch, except for the one in Cloughane. The room in Cloughane was dismal, bathroom was mouldy, not nice at all.Could not do the walk over the shoulder of My Brandon due to the fact that it is a very challenging hike which is not recommended in cloudy weather. It is rare to get a clear day in Ireland? I wish we'd had the option of a cab ride to the beach head near Cloughane, and accomodations for the last night in Castle Gregory. If I had known ahead of time about the walk between An Riasc and Cloughane, over Mt Brandon, I would have chosen the cab ride and beach walk to Castle Gregory in advance. Other than that it was a good walk and we would choose Mac's Adventures again.
  • Mr Keith Halstead 07/09/2021
    Timely booking, good communication, mostly good accomodation. We had trouble at one place that gave us one small room but two rooms had been booked. The landlord had to find us alternative accomodation in the town and it was an interesting and not entirely satisfactory.
  • Anonymous 04/09/2021
    It was so nice having Mac Adventures arrange our accommodations and meals. We also never had to worry about our luggage arriving at our next destination. I would highly recommend hikers to use Mac Adventures. I know we will consider using them in the future.
  • Anonymous 03/09/2021
    Walk instructions needed to be much more clear and specific - also taking account of livestock that might be in fields, etc Dorchester is not an attractive town to stay in - we were disappointed with this
  • Mr Guy Gibson 03/09/2021
    Love using Macs Adventures for our trekking overseas. We found the company to be extraordinarily efficient with hiking logistics for our 2019 trek in the Scottish Highlands and our 2021Tour du Mt. Blanc, Thank you Macs Adventures for your attention to detail and for the perfect places to lodge while on our hikes. We plan to use Macs Adventures again in the future.
  • Anonymous 02/09/2021
    Accommodation and information was excellent
  • Anonymous 02/09/2021
    Communication was great, accommodation great, price reasonable, service friendly. Phone was answered promptly and the issue dealt with efficiently when we had a last minute change of plan. Very happy.
  • Mr Duncan Priestner 02/09/2021
    Macs Adventures Organised a great holiday with lovely accommodation. The app with the downloaded maps gives reassurance in case you get lost. We used the book they provided for navigation but had to refer to the app a few times.
  • Anonymous 01/09/2021
    You were great in persisting to find accommodation at a time when it was hard to find along Hadrian's Wall. We were always treated with courtesy and the team gave us reassurance that, though it might take time, you they would be able to book for us. The only downside was that the App wasn't user friendly and I got lost in the online tool and couldn't properly export it to share with our party. it would have been easier if you had said straight out that we would be following the Sustrans path which was well-marked.
  • Anonymous 01/09/2021
    We booked our trip in 2019 and were told this year that Refugio Bonnati could not be confirmed for us and that we would have to bus back to Courmayeur and re-bus back to Bonnati the next morning. We had no instructions about what bus, where to find it, what times the bus ran. We had no idea if the bus was arranged for us by Macs and assumed it was. We had no idea that we would be expected to sort this out for ourselves in a country where we don't speak the language. We managed to reach a lovely woman at Macs who was puzzled as well that this had not been communicated to us or worked out on our schedule. We discovered that there is extremely limited bus service to Bonnati: 2 each day within 30 minutes of each other at both ends of the day. the morning trip 7:10 and 7:40 we would have missed entirely as it is when breakfast is served in the Bouton D'or (which we missed). Bussing back to Bonnati also adds approximately 1500 feet elevation gain on an already challenging hiking day. Additionally, we met other Mac's travelers who had booked in 2020 and had been confirmed at Bonnati. We really felt disappointed that, having booked and placed half the booking money a year in advance of our fellow travelers, they were confirmed and we were not. It really doesn't feel like the right thing for Mac's to have done. The trip and hike were wonderful and we loved the Alps but felt somewhat undervalued in the Bonnati experience and believe that we should have been confirmed in the order we booked the trip.
  • Anonymous 01/09/2021
    Macs were prepared to book an alternative trip to our original plan of Haute Route East. We requested this due to the risks of cancellation and likely difficulties in travelling to Switzerland. We ended up taking the back up trip to the South West Coast Path.
  • Mr David Bain 01/09/2021
    Macs provided a well organised troublefree trip on the West Highland Way. This is our second trip with Macs and I would recommend them.
  • Mrs Helen Tysseling 31/08/2021
    Very efficient and good value for money. Accommodation generally very good and maps/ support information very helpful
  • Anonymous 31/08/2021
    From booking it and all the way through Macs stayed in touch and kept us informed. At a very difficult time they sent all the information and any changes to restrictions. The walk and everything Mac’s booked was brilliant, the accommodation was excellent. The walk is very tough, if you are considering doing it, train for it, do the miles and walk with smiles.
  • Anonymous 31/08/2021
    Great communication, well organised trip and everything went smoothly as planned.
  • Mrs Shirley Gallacher 31/08/2021
    Excellent, there's only one thing went wrong on trip. The itinerary had said transfer back to hotel but no details of who where or when. After chasing macs, a call did eventually come through from a taxi company, but by then we'd decided to change plans. We should have been given contact details, as you don't always get a good phone signal while out walking. Apart from that, accommodate was lovely and everything g went smoothly. I would have liked some more human cantact though, instead of all emails. It was however a wonderful trip, and I will definitely use macs again (as I have on several occasions before)
  • Anonymous 30/08/2021
    Basically everything worked well with the major exception that instead of a B&B in Warkworth, we were booked into one with same name in Ayrshire. Fortunately, the people running the B&B in Warkworth were very helpful and helped to find an alternative for us in Warkworth.
  • Anonymous 30/08/2021
    Excellent communications, everything ran smoothly and to plan. A great company to trust your holiday plans with.
  • Samantha 29/08/2021
    From the initial enquiry to our return home the service was fabulous. Great itinerary, superb places to stay and speedy support service. Can’t fault it.
  • Mr Robert Burnett 29/08/2021
    Overall Macs prepared us well for the trip and then delivered as promised.

OVERALL SCORE

4.6
User334 total
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