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Bus Packing: Travels on the Daffodil Line

Delightful trip from Ledbury to Ross-on-Wye

The prettily named Daffodil Line (No 232) is perfect for a mini bus-packing adventure!

Take three days to explore the historic market towns of Ledbury and Ross-on-Wye, whilst enjoying a meander through Herefordshire countryside and over the border into Gloucestershire. In the spring, wild daffodils carpet the verges and woods of this area, known as the 'Golden Triangle', making the journey even more enticing.

The Daffodil Line runs seven days a week (reduced service on Sundays & Bank Holidays) with standard adult singles costing only £2, whilst a day rider is £6 (£3 on Sundays). To view the timetable, visit

For further inspiration, read The Guardian article, Riding the Daffodil Line around England's Golden Triangle

Tuesday: Sublime strolls & superb shopping

Arrive at the train station in Ledbury and then walk or take the bus to the town centre (2 mins by bus). Drop your bags at your accommodation - perhaps the charming former coaching inn The Feathers or a fantastic pub with rooms such as The Seven Stars or The Talbot Inn - before taking a stroll around Ledbury's historic streets. 

The unusual black and white stilted Market House has pride of place in the middle of the main street, with the nearby cobbled Church Lane leading to the Butchers Row House Museum, The Heritage Centre and the 16th Century Painted Room where you can view original Elizabethan wall paintings.

At the top, you'll find St Michael’s and All Angels Church with its detached bell tower (tours available on request) and relics from the Civil War. The Walled Garden next door is a great spot for a picnic or head to The Malthouse for modern flavours and an al fresco terrace.

Later, mooch around Ledbury's independent shops, including interiors mecca Tinsmiths, nordic specialists Hus & Hem, Take 4 Gallery, independent bookshops, plus lifestyle stores Ceci Paolo Emporium and Monkleys. Pause for coffee and cake at The Ledberry with its secret garden.

In the evening, treat yourself to a fabulous meal at 33 The Homend (booking necessary, only 14 covers available) or eat at one of the super pubs.

Cafe Garden
The Ledberry
Feathers Ledbury
The Feathers Hotel
View of Hellens Manor House in Spring
Hellens Manor
table and chairs inside restaurant
No3 Restaurant
Westons bar
Weston's Cider Mill




Wednesday: Historic delights & cider tasting

After a relaxed breakfast, hop onto the Daffodil Line at 11.10am at Ledbury's iconic Market House. Less than 10 minutes later, you'll arrive in Much Marcle village. Call into the nearby church of St. Bartholomew, famed for its 1500-year-old yew tree as well as its tombs, including that of Blanche Mortimer.

Over the road, follow the lane to Hellens Manor (open Wed, Sun & Bank Holidays from 1 April to  mid October). Roam the grounds and gardens for free, taking in the labyrinth, rare octagonal dovecote, physic garden and wildflower meadow. Book the guided tour (£9.50) of the beautiful house to see heirlooms of Anne Boleyn, the haunted bed chamber prepared for Queen Mary Tudor, the panelled Music Room adorned with its English Renaissance frieze and paintings by Gainsborough, Van Dyke and Goya.

Pause for lunch in the tea room or wander down the road to The Walwyn Arms. Cider fans will also enjoy the tour and tasting experience (£15) at nearby Westons Cider which is a behind-the-scenes look at how they make their award-winning brands, rounded off with a tutored tasting.

It's then a ten to fifteen minute walk back to the bus stop, where you can pick up the 13.22 or 15.39 to  (next service is at 17.15).The route winds along a cross-country route, taking in the villages of Dymock, Kilcot, Gorsley and Upton Bishop as well as the small market town of Newent along the way. In spring, enjoy the sight of thousands of wild daffodils in bloom!

Arriving in Ross-on-Wye, spend the evening at No.3 Restaurant or The Mint House before enjoying a comfortable night's stay at The Kings Head Hotel, The Hope & Anchor or Royal Hotel.

Wonderful Wye & perfect pottering

Wake up and take a morning stroll to The Prospect at the top of town for the iconic view of the River Wye's horseshoe bend. Later, descend past the pastel houses and through the fragrant terraced public garden for a promenade along the river, part of the Wye Valley Walk.

Alternatively add some adventure to your trip by booking a morning canoeing or paddleboarding trip, paddling downstream through the dramatic Wye Valley to Kerne Bridge, spotting swans, geese and herons, perhaps even glimpsing a kingfisher, otter or peregrine falcon.

If your preferred sport is shopping, then opt instead for a potter around town. Take in the historic Market House which is now home to contemporary designer-makers; pop into galleries such as Gallery 54, browse interiors boutiques, including Heavenly Homes & Gardens, and seek out sustainable fashion favourite Walker & Walker. Fans of vintage can follow the dedicated Vintage Trail to unearth every single shop. Read our shopping itinerary for more inspiration.

Enjoy lunch at Truffles Deli, seeking out the garden on a sunny day, or relax by the river at The Hope & Anchor. Then, take the 14.10 Daffodil Line service (next buses are 16.20 or 18.20) to return to Ledbury train station for your onward journey home. 

Browsing for clothes in Walker & Walker
Walker & Walker
Group of people canoe the River Wye
delicatessen sign
Truffles Deli
Daffodil line map
Map of the 232 Daffodil bus route