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Ducklings Retreat


Key Information


Star Rating:VE 5 Star


Pets:No Pets

Other: Wi-Fi Broadband

Easy Access For Cartmel Races

Things To Do While Staying At Ducklings Retreat

Our Explore More Pages showcase the best along with some of the lesser-known attractions of the Lake District. We want you to get the most from your experience whilst staying in this unique area by highlighting some of our favourite places, along with those of the owners and our friends most loved walks and attractions.

Some days you may wish to stay close to home, on others, set off and visit further away landscapes. Here are just a few of the magnificent places we love, both near and far, always remembering that nowhere is more than a hour to and hour and a quarter drive away, and the journey through the landscape is always part of the days enjoyment.

We would also love to hear about you memorable moments so we can share it with others. 
Either email or post us on Facebook, Google+ or twitter or even send a post card.

Owners Marion & Kevin's Lakeland Favourites

We like to think of Aynsome Manor Park and Cartmel as the Lake District….PLUS.

Ducklings’ Retreat is near enough to Cartmel to be able to enjoy the Priory, numerous pubs and cafes, food and other little shops, race and golf courses, but far enough away from the hustle and bustle of the village to escape to peace and quiet, lovely grounds and easy parking.

Cartmel Priory

We have had many couples on honeymoon enjoy the romantic setting of our retreat.

The village is a pleasant 10-15 minute stroll, but taxis are less than £5 each way when the weather is too inclement (it is the Lakes after all).

Cartmel, of course, has the bonus of being the home of the sticky toffee pudding and a fantastic cheese shop, as well as L’Enclume, the two Michelin starred restaurant of chef Simon Rogan, and now The Good Food Guide's number one UK restaurant - lunch is a very special experience.

This area is also part of the South Lakes peninsular, with its beautiful rolling hills, and wonderful views, which makes walking very enjoyable whatever the time of year or weather. We never tire of walking up to The Hospice, a local viewpoint, and then over to Grange over Sands for coffee before walking back for lunch in Cartmel!

The Langdales, Windermere and Kendal are an easy drive away, and public transport links are very good, especially the trains (London is only 2 and half hours away).  We have used the trains to extend our walking area, and have had an interesting day visiting Barrow and the Dock museum.

Our guests have also enjoyed trips to Ulverston, and the Buddhist temple, and most seem to end up at the King’s Arms for a meal or a local pint of beer from the brewery in town.

We do hope you will enjoy our home as much as we do.
Marion & Kevin

Hampsfell overlooking the bay

John's Favourite Places

Here are a few more places that I think are well worth visiting and exploring, along with an idea for a special romantic day - a balloon trip.

Exploring the area near Ducklings Retreat

Humphrey Head - Cartmel Peninsula

A large fold of limestone rock jutting out into the Morecambe Bay, it is a real pirate bay cove with a cave set up in the cliff face. Another fact about HH is that the last wolf in England was supposed shot here – truth or fiction nobody is quite sure.

It is easy to get to by car, with parking right by the shore. Explore the sands under the cliff, where there are plenty of rock pools with little fish and crabs. You can go up on to the scar for some super views. What you do not do is venture out from the edge, as we all know the sands are dangerous, with sinking sands and a tide that can easily catch you out. That apart it is a greaty short venture especially with children, On a nice day take a picnic to extend you visit at the quite interesting little spot


High Dam - Finsthwaite Newby Bridge

The big walks lie to the north, both in the south and the north of Cumbria, but a few miles east at Finsthwaite at the head of the Cartmel Peninsula you should try High Dam, the prettiest of small waters and little known, it is easy to walk the whole circumference.

There are two routes up to the tarn. The first is a gentle winding track, the second and only for the steady of foot, the old riverbed. It is quite rocky but great fun and more direct. A picnic is a must as is mushrooming, but only pick if you know your fungi. It is a popular place for pro mush pickers and I am sure they would guide you if asked nicely. A picnic is a must and in summer a paddle is a joy. 

For lunch you should try the Lakeside Hotel. Excellent food with a formal dining room, a contemporary bistro, also a conservatory overlooking the lake.


A Balloon Flight Over Cumbria

Imagine the romance and thrill to soar majestically skywards with a beautiful lake and mountain stretching away before and beneath you. This dream can now come true with Virgin Balloon Flights. Flights go from Newby Bridge at the foot of Windermere, also Rampsbeck Country House Hotel in Ullswater. Wrap up warm, even in summer and make sure toy camera batteries are well charged. 

I did a flight with Clare in Egypt many years ago, and the memory still stays with both of us. So chaps if you want to make a grand romantic gesture, this could be the one. Imagine proposing to your loved one a few thousand feet above the land of poets and artists and florishing a bunch of flowers - can't fail!

Exploring further afield of Ducklings Retreat

Levers Water & Church Beck

This walk starts from the centre of Coniston Village. You should be able to do this with just the aid of an OS map or, I believe, you can purchase specific local walk directions from the Coniston TIC. The route is about 4 miles to the tarn, with the return journey a bit quicker as it is mostly down hill. Starting from the lane by the co-op you commence a trail that leads up into the old Coppermines valley, passing waterfalls, crossing old bridges, rising gently to give an increasingly more dramatic view of the surrounding fell as you go. At the head of the Coppermines valley, with The Old Man to your left, you can continue up to Levers Water, a boulder strewn reservoir, set at the foot of rugged slopes of Great How, High Fell and Raven Tor. Return by the same route and reward your self with a pint of Coniston Gold in the Black Bull.


There then are a few ideas for you to try. To get the most from you visit, do have a look at our Lakeland Guide Pages, the links to the many attractions, and of course explore the wider Internet for more wonderful areas and things to.