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active 3 hours ago

William Armstrong

I am your English-born, UK and French expert for all activity holidays in off-the-beaten track destinations in UK and France. I have lived, worked and traveled extensively in both the UK and France. Passionate about outdoor activities, I love creating made to measure trips where travelers have an authentic experience, meet local people and indulge in the local way of life.

What places and activities do you specialize in?

"I specialize in active holidays, mainly self-guided hiking holidays, but also guided hiking holidays and self-guided cycling holidays in France and the UK. We focus on off the beaten track destinations with a strong regional identity, often overlooked by large companies, where our customers can enjoy a true local experience. Although we pride ourselves on interesting and varied circuits, for us the après-hike is of equal importance. We use small guest houses where there is a genuinely warm welcome and wonderful regional cuisine."

How did you get involved in travel?

"I moved to France in 2003 with my wife and first child. After perfecting my French and exploring the 4 corners of France, I decided to use my knowledge and extensive experience as a walker, mountaineer and traveler to create holidays which provide an authentic French experience in the wonderful destinations I had discovered. High Point Holidays was formerly created 10 years ago as an Anglo/French collaboration with my father Tony who was based in the UK office. Tony has since sadly passed away. My brother Mark has been involved with the company since 2011, becoming a partner in 2014. We now have two companies, one based in France and one based in the UK, working together to provide holidays in France, the UK and occasionally further afield, meaning that we are locally present where we welcome most of our customers. The company is growing but remains a family affair with my wife a partner in the French company, Randonnees Outre-Manche."

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"I would say that my favourite travel experience is a trip to the USA in 2000. It was one of the first travel experiences outside of Europe with my wife, soon after we were married. We hired a car and took a tour around the National Parks including Yosemite, Brice, Death Valley and the Grand Canyon. There were so many great experiences including watching the sun set over the Grand Canyon which was simply unforgettable. At the end of our road trip we stopped in Las Vegas and then flew to Dallas and had a great few days with my cousin and his wife who live there. What amazing contrasts. "

A dramatic sky sets a mood over London's Tower Bridge
London to the Cotswolds & Somerset - 10 Days

Enjoy 10 event-filled days traveling around England's scenic south. In London, you'll visit Buckingham and Kensington Palace, followed by tours of Windsor Castle and Eton College. Then head on a road trip through fairytale Cotswolds villages and a stop at Bath's ancient Roman ruins. Throughout this refined adventure, you'll enjoy picnics at Oxford and take high tea at the Savoy Hotel and opulent Blenheim Palace.

Explore the picturesque Cotswolds on a self drive tour
Highlights of Western England - 7 Days

Venture beyond London to the unspoiled countryside of England's west and north. Take a road trip around the storybook Cotswolds region, learn about Shakespeare in his hometown, and see Roman ruins and "Bridgerton" filming locations in Bath. That's just a warm-up because you'll tour the stunning coastline and historic castles of Wales and rediscover the magic of The Beatles on a city tour of Liverpool.

The Old Man of Storr overlooking Skye's coast
Hike Scotland's Highlands & Islands - 14 Days

Pack a lifetime of outdoor adventure into just 14 days when you hike the highlights of Scotland. It starts with three days on the country's most scenic trekking route—the West Highland Way—which passes through gorgeous Highland scenery. That's just the beginning, as you'll then travel on a historic steam train to two of the most beautiful isles in the country: Skye and Islay. Here you'll hike around otherworldly mountains, explore rugged coasts, and reward yourself with some of the best whiskey in the world.

The Avon River and historic Pulteney Bridge in Bath
Road Trip Through Southern England - 7 Days

This 7-day escape to beautiful southern England combines road trip adventures with luxury activities. Enjoy the history and beauty of Oxford, Bath, and Stonehenge, plus stroll opulent manor gardens and indulge in healing waters at Britain's only natural thermal spa. What's more, you'll set off on a road trip through the unspoiled Cotswolds to see the magic of the English countryside and its charming medieval villages.

Discover Oxford University's Radcliffe Camera in the Old Bodleian Library
History & Fantasy Tour of Southern England - 7 Days

Get ready for a week of adventures as you tour fascinating historical sites in southern England. It begins in Bath, a marvel of a city dating to Roman times, and is featured in the hit TV series "Bridgerton." Then, after seeing birds of prey at a falconry center, head to medieval Oxford and tour some of the amazing locales filmed in the "Harry Potter" movies. Whether you're traveling solo or with the whole family, it's good fun.

Tower Bridge amid a moody London sky
Family Fun in London & Highland Adventures in Scotland - 10 Days

Experience the highlights of London and Scotland over 10 days on an itinerary perfect for the whole family. Discover London's famous palaces, enjoy a "Harry Potter" tour, and see ancient archeological sites at Bath and Stonehenge. Take an overnight train to Scotland, walk the historic streets of Edinburgh, visit countryside locales seen in the "Outlander" TV series, and even ride the "Hogwarts Express" amid Highland scenery.

Recent trip reviews for William

A perfect 2 weeks in England! · England - Apr 18 - Apr 30, 2022

Traveler: Laura C. - Local specialist: William Armstrong

Kudos and more to William and Stephen! What a fabulous 2 week trip they put together for us in April. We started in London, travelled to Swanage and Lyme Regis, experienced Bath and the Cotswalds before returning to London. Our accomodations were charming and all prearranged tours were the best. It was so nice to have all of this plus transportation arranged in advance, as it allowed us to focus on the incredible sights and scenes and not stress about the details. All of the guides we... read more

Kudos and more to William and Stephen! What a fabulous 2 week trip they put together for us in April. We started in London, travelled to Swanage and Lyme Regis, experienced Bath and the Cotswalds before returning to London. Our accomodations were charming and all prearranged tours were the best. It was so nice to have all of this plus transportation arranged in advance, as it allowed us to focus on the incredible sights and scenes and not stress about the details. All of the guides we met with were so informative and passionate about their specialties. These included a tour guide for the Albert and Victoria museum; a fossil expert at the Jurassic Coast; a Jane Austin devotee and Daniel, a local guide from Bath, who took us to probably my favorite spot, Castle Combe.
A final note: I don't know how they did it, but somehow William and Stephen arranged for 2 weeks of incredible weather, with not a drop of rain!!

Hotel Review

Eight

Bath

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

The staff here was so accomodating and pleasant. The breakfasts were 5 star and the rooms clean and updated. While there wasn't a lift, help with getting luggage in and out was provided. The little square our rooms looked out on had activity until @ 10pm, but earplugs were provided just in case.

Tips for future travelers

My only thought would be that guests be able to navigate the stairs without access to a lift. This wasn't a problem for us, and we're all in our late 60's.

Cleanliness & Comfort

Staff

The best and so helpful.
Authenticity & Character

Location

So centrally located. The train station was within walking distance, and cabs were available at the top of the street
Activity Review

Private transfer to your hotel. Then check-in or bag-drop

London

Overall Rating
Activity Review

The drivers were on time and the vehicles spotless.

Transport

Quality of Experience

We booked a trip to England thru KimKim and i... · England - Apr 18 - Apr 30, 2022

Traveler: Cathy K. - Local specialist: William Armstrong

We booked a trip to England thru KimKim and it was absolutely fantastic. William and Stephen put together an amazing trip and there was no one thing that was not perfect. Hotels were awesome, the tours they picked for us were fantastic and all transfers showed up on time as arranged. They did everything and all we did was show up. I would highly recommend this group and we will most definitely use them again. read more

We booked a trip to England thru KimKim and it was absolutely fantastic. William and Stephen put together an amazing trip and there was no one thing that was not perfect. Hotels were awesome, the tours they picked for us were fantastic and all transfers showed up on time as arranged. They did everything and all we did was show up. I would highly recommend this group and we will most definitely use them again.

Hotel Review

Eight

Bath

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

The staff here was so accomodating and pleasant. The breakfasts were 5 star and the rooms clean and updated. While there wasn't a lift, help with getting luggage in and out was provided. The little square our rooms looked out on had activity until @ 10pm, but earplugs were provided just in case.

Tips for future travelers

My only thought would be that guests be able to navigate the stairs without access to a lift. This wasn't a problem for us, and we're all in our late 60's.

Cleanliness & Comfort

Staff

The best and so helpful.
Authenticity & Character

Location

So centrally located. The train station was within walking distance, and cabs were available at the top of the street
Activity Review

Private transfer to your hotel. Then check-in or bag-drop

London

Overall Rating
Activity Review

The drivers were on time and the vehicles spotless.

Transport

Quality of Experience

Trip to Scotland - April 2022 · Scotland - Apr 22 - Apr 29, 2022

Traveler: Vijay L. - Local specialist: William Armstrong

Our trip to Scotland in April 2022 was certainly very well organized. The people scheduled to pick us up from the airport, along with the guides and chauffeurs were timely in their pick up and drop off each day we were there. Our guide Keith was very knowledgeable and prompt and dressed each day in a kilt which added to the flair of the trip!
The walking tour guide in the cities of Edinburg (Jenny) and our city guide in Glasgow ( Caron) were both excellent. We especially liked our... read more

Our trip to Scotland in April 2022 was certainly very well organized. The people scheduled to pick us up from the airport, along with the guides and chauffeurs were timely in their pick up and drop off each day we were there. Our guide Keith was very knowledgeable and prompt and dressed each day in a kilt which added to the flair of the trip!
The walking tour guide in the cities of Edinburg (Jenny) and our city guide in Glasgow ( Caron) were both excellent. We especially liked our guide Ruari in Aviemore who was patient, polite and extremely knowledgeable about the wild life of Scotland.
Inverness is hands down the prettiest place to see. You will not want to miss that city!

Our hotels were all bed and breakfast places that were well sought out, very comfortable and in upscale neighborhoods. We did have one hiccup upon arrival in our hotel in Edinburgh. The check-in clerk told us we had to pay for the hotel before handing us our keys. A quick phone call to the travel agency and our dilemma was handled expeditiously.

If I had one complaint, it would be that our schedule was a little too hectic. We packed in way too many tours, sightseeing, and buzzing around to get to as many places as possible. I did feel we were just driving around too much get from point A to point B . We never got to linger in any one city long enough to absorb the culture, local cuisine, shopping , arts & crafts and street performers.

Maybe, if you plan a trip like ours take at least 1 day in each city to sit at a small cafe with a coffee. Stroll down the cobble streets, take in the sights and sounds and just talk to the local people. Scotland is extremely scenic and picturesque!

Overall we were extremely pleased with our travel arrangements and would highly recommend you using this agency for your future trip to Scotland.

Hotel Review

Hapimag Resort Edinburgh

Edinburgh

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Activity Review

Private walking tour of Edinburgh with a top Historian

Edinburgh

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Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Jenifer

Breathtaking · Scotland - Apr 25 - May 5, 2022

Traveler: Jenifer S. - Local specialist: William Armstrong

We had the trip of a lifetime with the help of William and Stephen. They tailored the trip to the things we liked and took out all the stress of planning the trip. We particularly liked all of our tours, the wildlife tour, riding bikes in Callander, and the tour of islands in Oban. All of our guides were knowledgeable and kind. There was not one activity we did not love, and the team checked in to make sure things were going smoothly. The accommodations were also amazing. Our favorites... read more

We had the trip of a lifetime with the help of William and Stephen. They tailored the trip to the things we liked and took out all the stress of planning the trip. We particularly liked all of our tours, the wildlife tour, riding bikes in Callander, and the tour of islands in Oban. All of our guides were knowledgeable and kind. There was not one activity we did not love, and the team checked in to make sure things were going smoothly. The accommodations were also amazing. Our favorites were the Dunstane Houses and Hotel du Vin. We miss Scotland already and are already thinking about when we can come back- and we know we will use KimKim again!

Hotel Review

The Dunstane

Edinburgh

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

The place to stay in Edinburgh. An old house that was updated but kept the integrity of the house. You feel transported.

Cleanliness & Comfort

Staff

Authenticity & Character

Location

Slightly farther from town center for those that can not walk long distances
Activity Review

Electric Mountain Bike Hire in Callander

Callander

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Incredible views you can take in at your own pace. Very little energy expenditure with E-bikes but a large reward with epic views as you ride through the woods.

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

12-Day Honeymoon in Scotland - April 2022 · Scotland - Apr 18 - Apr 29, 2022

Traveler: Allie H. - Local specialist: William Armstrong

We had a fantastic 12-day trip touring Scotland. William and Stephen at High Point Holidays were very helpful throughout the process. Early on in planning, they worked through several iterations of our itinerary making sure if fit our needs. When it came to the trip itself, we had some travel challenges, including a cancelled flight that delayed our trip by a full day, and a positive COVID test making us unable to travel back on the date intended at the end of the trip. William and Stephen... read more

We had a fantastic 12-day trip touring Scotland. William and Stephen at High Point Holidays were very helpful throughout the process. Early on in planning, they worked through several iterations of our itinerary making sure if fit our needs. When it came to the trip itself, we had some travel challenges, including a cancelled flight that delayed our trip by a full day, and a positive COVID test making us unable to travel back on the date intended at the end of the trip. William and Stephen worked extra time to rebook transfers, hotels, tours, etc., to help us adjust to these challenges. Their support was so valuable, especially in this time when travel is riskier than in the past.

The trip itself was spectacular. We were mostly in the highlands. Some of our favorite parts:
-The PhD level tour of Bannockburn with Dr. Cook. This gave us a fantastic historical foundation at the outset of our trip. We had four hours with Dr. Cook to explore the battlefield and ask a wide array of historical and cultural questions about Scotland
-The West Highland Way. We loved doing the West Highland walks - we felt this was a great way to get immersed in the nature of the highlands. All details of the walk and the logistics of securing lunch, etc., were made very clear to us making it easy and fun for us to do.
-Kinloch Lodge on Isle of Skye. This was our splurge hotel of the trip, and it was well worth it. The food was fantastic, the service was unbeatable. This was a part of our trip we will never forget.

We felt like the selection of all the hotels was on point, and the details of the trip were put together well. We always had enough time to get from place to place, and there was a wealth of information and detail shared with us to navigate the trip as we toured.

Thank you William and Stephen - we appreciate you!

Hotel Reviews

Bridge of Orchy Hotel

Bridge of Orchy

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

This was our first hotel, and it was one of our favorites, second only to the Kinloch Lodge in Skye, which is much much more expensive. The hotel has an old inn and some modern buildings that also have rooms. The rooms were very modern, clean, welcoming. The food at the restaurant was some of the best we had on our trip. Very easy access to the West Highland way trail - it is right along the path.

Location

Right next to the trail
Cleanliness & Comfort

Room was very clean, efficient use of space, bright
Staff

Authenticity & Character

The food at the restaurant, the proximity to the trail, the wonderful views

Nevis Bank Inn

Fort William

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

This hotel was clean and the staff was friendly, but there was nothing special about it. It felt very bland, and in a town like Fort William, it seems like there would be a better option for a similar price. The restaurant was not very good, and there was little character. However, as mentioned, it was comfortable and clean.

Location

It was a bit of a walk to the center of town, positioned on one of the main roads.
Cleanliness & Comfort

The bed was comfortable
Staff

Authenticity & Character

Kinloch Lodge

Isle of Skye

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

The hotel is pricy, but it is totally worth it. This was one of the highlights of our trip. The hotel itself was gorgeous, with wonderful views and very comfortable drawing rooms where you could read, play chess, have a drink, generally relax. There were some small walks you could do from the property which we enjoyed as well. Our room had a fantastic view, and the bed was very comfortable. The service was impeccable. We had dinners at the restaurant, which is also pricey, but well worth it for the food and overall experience. As we spend more days on Skye after our stay at Kinloch, we heard of locals that would come to this restaurant for special occasions (birthdays, anniversaries, etc). There are not many customers staying at the hotel, which gives is a relatively private feel, but you still have the energy of other guests around you and with whom you can socialize.

Tips for future travelers

Book the hotel restaurant ahead of time - there aren't many other options nearby, and it is well worth it. We typically like to explore local restaurants, but Skye doesn't have a ton of options so go with the on-site option this time.

Location

Cleanliness & Comfort

Staff

Some of the best service I've ever experienced
Authenticity & Character

Cairngorm Hotel

Aviemore

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

The staff was very friendly, and there was a bustling restaurant and bar downstairs that had a great energy. The food was pretty good, nothing exceptional, but decent. The room itself was the same - pretty good, nothing exceptional. The view out our window was of a roof with some trash on it so not ideal. However, it does seem like this hotel is likely one of the better options in Aviemore, and we enjoyed our stay.

Location

Cleanliness & Comfort

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Authenticity & Character

The Tailrace Inn

Kinlochleven

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

The Inn has a wonderful tavern below, which we enjoyed after a long day's walk on the West Highland Way. The staff were very friendly, and the vibe at this place was really great. Four stars because the bed was not so comfortable, so we didn't sleep that well here. However, overall we enjoyed the experience here. It is definitely a more rustic Inn, which did not bother us. There is another hotel in town called Macdonald Hotel which had a restaurant with a great view that I may have preferred to stay at, but my husband doesn't agree so there you go :)

Tips for future travelers

If you're cool with eating pub food, this one is as good as any other. If you'd like dinner with a view, reserve Macdonald Hotel ahead of time. Can't speak to the food, as it was booked when we tried to go there, but the view of the Loch is exceptional.

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Authenticity & Character

Six Brunton Place Bed and Breakfast

Edinburgh

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

Wonderful room, very beautiful and comfortable. And very helpful staff. Central location in Edinburgh, walkable to the main sites. My husband unfortunately learned he was positive for COVID during our stay at this hotel, and the woman working at the hotel was very understanding and helped us figure out how to get dinner/breakfast and let us check out an hour late as we figured out our self-isolation plan.

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Cleanliness & Comfort

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Authenticity & Character

Cuillin Hills Hotel

Portree

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

The view from this hotel alone makes it worth a stay. The restaurant was also very good - we ate in the restaurant one night, and ordered room service the other. Both were very good. The restaurant has fantastic views of the Cuillin Hills. The room itself was pretty cookie-cutter, but very comfortable.

Tips for future travelers

Recommend at least one night at the hotel restaurant to enjoy the view.

Location

Cleanliness & Comfort

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Authenticity & Character

Kings House Way Inn

Glencoe

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

Great hotel - really fun to finish the day on the West Highland way and end up at this isolated hotel seemingly in the middle of nowhere in the Glencoe Valley. Great views. The restaurant was just okay.

Location

Cleanliness & Comfort

Staff

Authenticity & Character

Activity Reviews

Phd level guided tour of Bannockburn

Stirling

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Dr. Cook led us around Sterling and Bannockburn for four hours telling us the history of the Battle as well as answering any and all questions about Scottish history and culture. He was extremely knowledgeable. As a bonus, the walk was beautiful, we really got to explore those two towns.

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

First day on the West Highland Way

Glencoe

Overall Rating
Activity Review

We thoroughly enjoyed the two days we did the West Highland way. Clear walking notes, and such a great way to immerse in the beauty of Scotland.

Transport

Bag transfer was seamless
Quality of Experience

Salmon and Sea Trout fishing on the Snizort River with a ghillie (fishing expert)

Portree

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Danny was very knowledgeable and a great teacher. I have almost zero fly fishing experience, and my husband very little, and he did a great job teaching us the foundations. We didn't catch any fish, but what can you do. Location was great, right next to the Old Man of Storr

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Cairngorms National Park Wildlife tour with a specialist

Aviemore

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Safari Steve was a hoot. We didn't really know what to expect with this tour, but we knew we wanted to get out and explore the park. Steve took us to some beautiful, off the beaten path spots that would have been difficult to find on our own. He helped us see and learn about the birds and other wildlife in the area as well. We saw a pair of Osprey in their nests, some red grouse, and many other things. The Walkers shortbread and coffee was a nice touch!

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Isle of Skye Whisky immersion at Torabhaig

Scotland

Overall Rating
Activity Review

We enjoyed learning about the process of distilling. The tour was good, and the whiskey was good. It did not absolutely blow us away. I think we would have liked to go to the older distillery on the island more (Talisker), but it is also not as conveniently located. Overall we enjoyed the tour and it fit into our itinerary well.

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Invigorating full body massage in Skye

Scotland

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Very relaxing and welcome after several days of long hikes. The massage therapist was very friendly and did a good job. She was a bit too chatty at the beginning, but quieted down after a bit. It generally felt very good, but there were a few times when she would use a roller directly on the spine which didn't feel great. However, overall, we thoroughly enjoyed the experience and it added to our relaxation at Kinloch Lodge.

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Skyeskyns Tannery visit

Scotland

Overall Rating
Activity Review

It was fascinating learning about the tannery trade, and it also helped us get context for sheep farming in Scotland and the UK. The tour itself was really great. We did end up buying some awesome sheep skin slippers. There was less merchandise from the actual tannery than we were expecting. The location of the tannery was beautiful and worth the trip to see on its own. We also appreciated the eco-friendly practices that the tannery uses.

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

18 holes at a Championship Course in the Spey Valley

Aviemore

Overall Rating
Activity Review

My husband really enjoyed his round of golf. There was almost no one on the course, and the scenery was beautiful.

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Covid Trip · Scotland - Oct 9 - Oct 15, 2021

Traveler: Whitney S. - Local specialist: William Armstrong

The trip was kind of a cluster because of the COVID regulations, but some of the restaurants or destinations were closed on the day we were scheduled to see them. Our rental was a nightmare, we didn't fit in the cars and the car seat was unavailable, so we had to use a different one that was not functional that we had to makeshift into working. The tour guide/driver was just a driver. He didn't know the schedule and asked us where we were supposed to be going and seemed confused with the... read more

The trip was kind of a cluster because of the COVID regulations, but some of the restaurants or destinations were closed on the day we were scheduled to see them. Our rental was a nightmare, we didn't fit in the cars and the car seat was unavailable, so we had to use a different one that was not functional that we had to makeshift into working. The tour guide/driver was just a driver. He didn't know the schedule and asked us where we were supposed to be going and seemed confused with the whole thing. He also didn't provide any information on any of the places. It was just quite odd. Otherwise, it went smoothly. Though I would suggest, if possible, Kim Kim add some sort of background audio that you could listen to on your way to the next destination so you get the background before you get there.