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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


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


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


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


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.

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.

  • Mrs Carolyn Bax 07/06/2023
    Enjoyed a really lovely few days walking between towns in Puglia. Our accommodation was lovely, our walks weren’t too difficult, the scenery was beautiful and everything was very well organised. The app was easy to use and it as handy downloading the maps to help navigate our daily walks.
  • Anonymous 07/06/2023
    Everything worked as planned! The App was pretty much flawless. The “guides” who were the drivers added an extra element with their local knowledge! Accommodations were high quality.
  • Anonymous 07/06/2023
    They were so helpful and professional. Taylor our contact went above and beyond because we had to change some dates. The entire walk in the Cotswold was wonderful. Each inn was a delight and the information provided about each days walk was spot on. I would highly recommend Macs Adventures.
  • Anonymous 07/06/2023
    Well organized, great accommodations, easy to communicate with when we needed help.
  • Mrs Cathy Beathard 07/06/2023
    This was my first time to book a trip with Macs Adventure and it went extremely well. Dan Crandall and the others made it very easy to plan our trip, make some custom arrangements, and organize our group. Each night's B&B was charming and ready for us to check in. Our luggage moved along seamlessly. The Macs App was a very helpful tool as we hiked along the Dingle Peninsula. We met some really wonderful Irish friends and swapped many stories. I will certainly use Macs Adventure again!
  • Mrs Ros Goodman 07/06/2023
    Very well organised walking holiday by Macs Adventure’s. We were able to enjoy the wonderful scenery knowing that our baggage was being efficiently transported, and excellent accommodation was awaiting us at the end of our daily walk.. Everything functioned like clockwork.
  • Miss Gay Pinkerton 07/06/2023
    Macs organised a West Highland Way trip gave an OK quote. Communication at this point was good. Staff were helpful. Then about 3 weeks before we were to travel received an email saying one of the b&bs was cancelled due to bad reviews which was fine, but didn't say which one or where. Told we would get a refund and it would be easier for us to arrange another place ourselves. This is when we found out that the place that was cancelled we were supposed to stay 2 nights according to the app. When I phoned it seemed we were only staying one night there and somewhere else the second night so we were very confused. Eventually I managed to find a place but communication to get a refund was very slow and didn't get it till the day we finished. Accommodation we stayed in was good and people lovely. Baggage transfers was great and well organised
  • Mrs Heather Harradine 07/06/2023
    This was the second trip with Macs. It was well planned, very good communication before the trip. Accommodations were great.
  • Mrs Susan Hay 07/06/2023
    Trip was well organized from start to finish. We didn't have to worry about anything other than sleeping, eating and walking! Accommodations were exactly as described with welcoming and friendly hosts. This was our 4th long distance walking holiday through Macs and would definitely recommend to anyone considering a similar trip.
  • Anonymous 07/06/2023
    The hikes are beautiful, well chosen, easy to follow. The accommodations were lovely and comfortable.
  • Anonymous 07/06/2023
    I read reviews of various companies who planned the West Highland Way and I am so glad that I chose to go with Mac's! From the quick replies, to the ease of all the details being handled for us, this was the easiest trip to go on. They did a wonderful job of picking out places to stay along the Way that made us feel welcome and gave us the experience of Scotland. The baggage transfers were all flawless and the app was especially helpful to check that we were on the correct route.
  • Mr Aroon Maben 07/06/2023
    I used the services of Macs Adventures to book my Best of Camino Walk in May 2023.. I am happy to write that I was delighted with the booking process and the support I received throughout the walk. The hotels were very good and the baggage transfer was flawless. It was comforting to know that, in case of an emergency, I would be speaking to someone rather than a machine. While on the walk I needed to clarify something and I was able to speak to someone even though we were in different time zones. I am signing up for another adventure with Macs in 2024.
  • Anonymous 07/06/2023
    We had a great time! For the most part, everything went well. But, one day the map and the itinerary sent us to different places. we ended up at what we thought was our Inn...It was where our map sent us, but there were no rooms there. When we looked at the itinerary, we were supposed to be 4 miles away... to be picked up less than an hour later... Shouldn't the map and itinerary send us to the same place???
  • Mr Robert Bennett 07/06/2023
    Prepared material well. Dedicated person to follow my reservation and trip. Friendly. Organized. Thorough. Even reaching out while we were on our walk.
  • Ms Mary Gildea 07/06/2023
    Great trip! Excellent accommodations, great app
  • Anonymous 07/06/2023
    Incredible adventure in Catalonia! Great hiking, food, accommodations, and communication on the tour. The stay at Finca Bell Lloc was simply spectacular and the included winery tour was impressive. This is a really special region and we cannot wait to go back!
  • Lucia 07/06/2023
    The organisation of the section of the Via Francigena walk that I did was excellent. The maps on the MACS app were great and supplemented with written instructions for each day’s walk. Overall, hotels were of a very good standard.
  • Anonymous 07/06/2023
    Everything was very well organized. We loved our trip and felt well supported by Macs Adventure!
  • Mrs Ilse Smed 07/06/2023
    Overall the trip was wellplanned with nice accommodations (as always). There were some bumps regarding timetables on trains and ferry. Contacted Macs by phone and Beth was quick to sort our proplem. We did: Highland and Isle o´f Skye Rail and hike.
  • Mr Victor Elinoff 07/06/2023
    I am a regular traveler with Mac’s. I find there service to be excellent and down graded for 1 reason only. We have repeated problems with receiving hard copies of travel documents BEFORE the trip. On our last trip to Ireland they not only did not come to our US address they were not there as promised at our 1rst Hotel in Ireland. Mac’s appropriately apologized and told us how they were trying to correct the problem. Very nicely Mac’s treated the 4 of us to dinner our last night on the trek. I wanted to be honest about the 4/5 stars. More importantly I would definitely book and travel with Mac again.


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