Silver Travel Advisor’s most prolific reviewer heads for the West country on a coach trip
I was delighted to win the Silver Travel Advisor August prize in 2021 for a coach trip with Alfa Travel. They are well geared up to catering for the older market and really do look after you. The drivers are all excellent and take good care of their guests.
I decided on five days in Weston-super-Mare, an area I’ve not visited before. The Anchor Head Hotel is on the edge of Weston-super-Mare, overlooked by the wooded mass of Wortlebury Hill with its Iron Age Hillfort. It is a typical seaside resort with a long expanse of sandy beach, promenade, gardens, pier, big wheel and donkeys. Mind you, the sea does go out a very long way.
The hotel belongs to Alfa Travel’s Leisureplex subsiduary and is typical of all their hotels. It is traditional, with clean, comfortable rooms and a conventional menu. The staff are lovely and always go the extra mile to be helpful.
We had a free day which I spent exploring Weston. There were two included excursions. The first was to Cheddar and Wells. The drive up to Cheddar Gorge along a narrow and winding road was dramatic with cliffs up to 400 feet high. Nestling below the Mendip hills, Cheddar is very much geared up to tourists with the Cheddar Gorge Company Cheese Shop, proclaiming the only cheddar cheese to be made in Cheddar. Somerset is also known for its cider, and next door was a shop selling bottled and draught cider.
Wells is a delightful small town, not at all touristy, with a lot of small specialist shops. I visited the Abbey with its magnificent carved west front, astronomical clock with jousting knights and the iconic scissor arch, the medieval solution to a collapsing tower. Next to the Abbey are the ruins of the mediaeval Bishop’s Palace, with its moat and swans trained to ring a bell to be fed, surrounded by 14 acres of tranquil and horticulturally interesting gardens.
The other excursion was a full day to Bath, a wonderful Georgian city, busy with tourists and buskers playing everything from a trumpet to an acoustic guitar. As well as exploring all the narrow alleyways, finding Sally Lunn’s, the oldest house in Bath and admiring the ladder of angels climbing up the west front of the Abbey, I also went round the fascinating Roman Baths. Here archaeological finds from over 2,000 years are displayed including the gilt bronze head of the goddess Sulis Minerva which is one of the major treasures of Roman Britain.
All in all, it was an excellent holiday. I can’t wait for my next trip… If you’ve not been on an Alfa Travel holiday before, I can definitely recommend it!
To book an Alfa Travel coach holiday, ideal for single travellers, with a great choice of pick up points, visiting many areas of the UK, call 0800 412 5678 and speak to our Silver Travel Advisors.