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Walking Tours: Ratings 1 to 5 

Activity Level 1 = Easy: 
In general: The trip will be easy for anyone who can walk for up to 90 minutes without stopping.
Terrain: Flat to gently rolling terrain with some rocky areas and maybe some steps but no sustained or steep ascents or descents
Actual walking time: between 2 - 3 hours per day, mostly in the morning but sometimes also in the afternoon
Distances: Usually between 4 - 7 km (2.5 - 4.5 m.). Max distance is 8 km (5 mi)
Surfaces: Trails consist mainly of compact earth and/or gravel and sometimes gravel roads
Footing: Easy/good. Proper hiking shoes are always preferred, but sport sandals, running shoes and tennis shoes are adequate
Specifics: Detailed on each tour
Hiking Poles: Not required
Compared to the Cinque Terre: This tour is significantly easier than the hikes in the Cinque Terre
Other: This tour is appropriate for first time “hikers”
Easy Tours: None of our tours are totally flat, but our boat trips can all be rated "easy" if you decide to just walk around the ports where we moor
Tours: only our boat–based tours in Turkey, Croatia, and Greece Dodecanese Islands would be easy IF you decide to skip the hikes and stay in town

Activity Level 2 = Easy to Moderate
In general: This is an Easy to Moderate tour for fit hikers, and will be do-able with some effort by less fit hikers.
Terrain: Flat to gently rolling terrain with some rocky areas. Perhaps some short, relatively steep climbs and descents, but nothing longer than 20 minutes.
Actual walking time: Between 2 - 4 hours per day, mostly in the morning but sometimes also in the afternoon
Distances: Usually 7 - 10 km (4.5 - 6 mi). Max distance is 12 km (7 mi).
Surfaces: Trails consist mainly of compact earth and/or gravel and sometimes gravel roads
Footing: Easy/good. Proper hiking shoes with thick soles with good treads are required. Sport sandals, running shoes and tennis shoes are not adequate.
Specifics: Detailed on each tour
Hiking Poles: Not required, but if you habitually use hiking poles then you will find them helpful
Compared to the Cinque Terre: This tour is significantly easier than the hikes in the Cinque Terre
Other: This tour is appropriate for fit, first-time “hikers” who enjoy walking
Easy to Moderate Tours: Puglia & Basilicata, Piedmont Walk. All of our boat–based tours in Turkey, Croatia, and Greece Dodecanese Islands would be “easy to moderate” IF you decide to skip the one or two of the more challenging hikes. Your guides of course can advise you of the difficulty level and the terrain and footing of each walk. 

Activity Level 2 + = Easy to Moderate Plus:
In general: This is an Easy to Moderate tour for fit hikers, and will be a little challenging but do-able for less fit hikers.
Terrain: Flat to gently rolling terrain but with some rocky, rugged terrain. May have some short, relatively steep climbs and descents, but nothing longer than 30 minutes. The walks are shorter in distance than those on a 3-rated tour. 
Actual walking time: Between 2 - 4 hours per day, mostly in the morning but sometimes also in the afternoon
Distances: Usually 7 - 10 km (4.5 - 6 mi). Max distance is 12 km (7 mi).
Surfaces: Trails consist mainly of compact earth and/or gravel and sometimes gravel roads, with frequent rocky and uneven trails
Footing: Good, but on occasion you have to pay attention to where and how you place your feet. Proper hiking shoes with thick soles with good treads are required. Sport sandals, running shoes and tennis shoes are not adequate.
Specifics: Detailed on each tour
Hiking Poles: Not required, but if you habitually use hiking poles then you will find them helpful
Compared to the Cinque Terre: This tour is significantly easier than the hikes in the Cinque Terre
Other: This tour is appropriate for fit, first-time “hikers” who enjoy walking and who have good balance
Easy to Moderate Plus Tours: in this category are all of our boat–based tours in Turkey, Croatia, and Greece. On these trips, we usually do a walk in the morning, return to the boat for a swim and then lunch, then cruise for a few hours to our next destination, then sometimes drop off for another late afternoon hike, which you could skip and just relax on the boat. Your guides of course can advise you of the difficulty level and the terrain and footing of each walk. Other Easy to Moderate Plus tours are: Tuscany Val d’Orcia & Maremma Walk and Provence Walk.

Activity Level 3 = Moderate:
In general: This is a Moderate tour for fit hikers, and will be a little challenging but do-able for less fit hikers.
Terrain: Rolling to hilly terrain with frequent climbs and descents, often over rocky terrain. May have some short, relatively steep climbs and descents. 
Actual walking time: between 2 - 5 hours per day, mostly in the morning but also in the afternoon.
Distances: Usually between 8 - 12 km (5 - 7 mi). Max distance is 14 km (8 mi).
Surfaces: Trails consist mainly of compact earth and/or gravel and sometimes gravel roads, with occasional rocky and uneven trails
Footing: Good, but on occasion you have to pay attention to where and how you place your feet. Proper hiking shoes with thick soles with good treads are required. Sport sandals, running shoes and tennis shoes are not adequate.
Specifics: Detailed on each tour
Hiking Poles: Recommended but not required, but if you habitually use hiking poles then you will find them helpful
Compared to the Cinque Terre: These tours are easier than the hikes in the Cinque Terre
Other: This tour is appropriate for fit, first-time “hikers” who enjoy walking and who have good balance
Moderate Tours: Tuscany Chianti, Dordogne Walk, Sicily Walk, Spain Andalusia, Lake Como Hike, and Corsica Hike

Activity Level 3+ = Moderate Plus:
In general: This is a Moderate tour for fit hikers who will find the walks a satisfying workout, while less-fit hikers will find them challenging but do-able and have a great sense of achievement at the end of the trip.
Terrain: Rolling to hilly terrain with frequent steep ascents and descents. The "+" indicates that they also involve more rugged, rocky, or steep terrain than the standard 3-rated tours.
Actual walking time: Between 3 - 5 hours per day, mostly in the morning but also in the afternoon.
Distances: Usually 8 - 12 km (5 - 7 mi) per day. Max distance 16 km (9 mi).
Surfaces: Trails are a mix of compact earth or dirt track, gravel roads, and rocky, uneven trails. You will also encounter ancient stone stairways and rocky steps.
Footing: Good, but you have to pay attention to where and how you place your feet. Proper hiking shoes with thick soles with good treads are required. Sport sandals, running shoes and tennis shoes are not adequate.
Specifics: Rolling but rocky terrain. Daily activity 4-5 hours. Max distance 16 kms (10 mi.), and the elevation gain is between 200 - 400 m (650 - 1,300 ft). Note: this is an "easier" version of our Dolomites hiking trip, but you will still be in an alpine environment with some sustained climbs, just not as long and steep as our classic tour. The elevation gain and loss is less dramatic than in our classic tour.
Hiking Poles: Highly recommended but not required, and if you habitually use hiking pole you will regret it if you don’t have them.  
Compared to the Cinque Terre: The Cinque Terre is the perfect example of a 3+ rated tour. Our most common comment about the Cinque Terre walk and other tours rated 3+ is “More challenging than I expected but I am glad I did it”.
Other: This tour is appropriate for “sporty and fit” first-time hikers who enjoy walking and have good balance. People with hip and knee issues might find a 3+ tour challenging because of the terrain and the duration of the hikes.
Moderate Plus Tours: Amalfi is the easiest of this group, then Dolomites Lite, followed by the Cinque Terre, Sardinia, and Greece Meteora & Zagori

Activity Level 4 = Rewarding
In general: This is a Rewarding tour for fit hikers who will find them a satisfying and challenging workout; they are not appropriate for unfit hikers.
Terrain: Rolling and often steep terrain with frequent challenging ascents and descents, often over rugged and uneven terrain
Actual walking time: between 4 - 6 hours per day, mostly in the morning but also in the afternoon
Distances: Usually 10 - 15 km (6 - 9 mi). Max distance is 18 km (11 mi).
Surfaces: Trails are a mix of compact earth or dirt track, gravel roads, and rocky, uneven trails. You will also encounter ancient stone stairways and rocky steps. You may also find somewhat overgrown sections. 
Footing: Good to tricky. You must pay attention to where and how you place your feet. Proper hiking shoes or boots with thick soles with good treads are required. Sport sandals, running shoes and tennis shoes are not adequate.
Specifics: Detailed on each tour
Hiking Poles: Highly recommended and your guides will mutter to themselves when they see you did not bring any poles. If you don’t bring your poles and ask your guide to use his or hers, they will refuse because they need them!   
Compared to the Cinque Terre: More difficult than the Cinque Terre mostly because the distances are longer. If you enjoyed the hikes on the Cinque Terre and want to hike more, then these 4-rated “Rewarding” tours are perfect for you. 
Other: These tours are not appropriate for first-time hikers. People with hip and knee issues might find that they aggravate your pre-existing injuries. Hikers need to be fit and able to hike for five hours a day. You should also be used to negotiating rocky, uneven terrain.
Rewarding Tours: Dolomites "Classic" Hike, Tuscany Mountains 

Activity Level 5 = Challenging:
In general: This is a Challenging tour for fit hikers who will feel satisfied and a bit tired by the end of the day; they are not appropriate for novice hikers or even for experienced but unfit hikers.
Terrain: Rolling and often steep terrain. Challenging sustained climbs and descents of up to 1,200 m (4,000 ft). Altitude can play a role as our Challenging tours are in the mountains. On the Dolomites "Alta Via" tour we sleep at 2,700 m (8,500 ft).
Actual walking time: between 5 - 7 hours per day
Distances: Usually 15 - 18 km (9.5 - 11 mi). Max distance is 22 km (14 mi).
Surfaces: Trails are a mix of compact earth or dirt track, gravel roads, and rocky, uneven trails. You will find scree slopes and steep switchback trails, and at times you may have to use your arms to climb up a short “impasse,” or sit down on your bum to descend sections that are too big for a step. You might also find somewhat overgrown trails. 
Footing: Good to tricky. You must almost ALWAYS pay attention to where and how you place your feet. Proper hiking shoes or boots with thick soles with good treads are required. Sport sandals, running shoes and tennis shoes are not adequate.
Specifics: Detailed on each tour
Hiking Poles: REQUIRED! If you don’t bring your poles the guide will hit you over the head with their own poles. 
Compared to the Cinque Terre: Significantly more difficult than the Cinque Terre because the distances are much longer and the terrain and footing much more difficult. If you enjoyed the hikes in the Cinque Terre and found them to be a dawdle, and you regularly hike and backpack, then these 5-rated tours are right up your alley.  
Other: These tours are not appropriate for first-time hikers. People with hip and knee issues will probably find that the hikes aggravate their pre-existing injuries to the point that they may have to abandon the tour. Hikers need to be fit and have healthy joints, and easily be able to hike for six hours a day. You should also be used to negotiating rocky, uneven terrain. 
Backpacks: On these trips you will be carrying more in your backpacks than on other tours because: a) we are in the mountains so you need to carry more layers and be ready for any weather conditions; b) you may need to carry more water since it may not be available; c) you may be carrying your lunch; and d) in some cases you may have to carry an extra change of clothing, as in our Dolomites "Alta Via" Hike you stay up in the mountains where luggage transfers are not possible.  
Challenging Tours: Dolomites "Alta Via," Republic of Georgia – Tusheti National Park




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