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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.
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 simple, easy walk, Gummers How lies just above Newby Bridge on the Bowness road. Park up at the NT parking space and from here you can scramble up onto Gummers How for a view spectacular of the lake. The surrounding fells here are to be explored and it is worth just pottering around, and maybe a picnic with the most splendid backdrop. Make sure you take a camera for some memorable images of your stay in the Lakes.
If you like art and culture, then a trip to the main town is a must. Abbott Hall has changing exhibitions, and at the Brewery Arts Center you can take in a movie, or a live show. The BAC attracts many big name stand-up comedians and is worth checking its diary dates.
The streets are vibrant with plenty of shops, cafes and restaurants and theri a twice weekly farmers market. For more info check out our Kendal page in the Lakeland Guide section.
Grizedale Forest lies east of Coniston Water, with the Visitor Centre on the road from Hawkshead to Satterthwaite. A massive working forest, the Commission has endlessly striven over the decades to build tracks and trails for walkers or for those who prefer, mountain bike trails.
At the center of the woodland there is a cafe, shop, bike hire and the arts gallery. The forest chiefs are big on art, where you will find a host of woodland sculpture set along the trails. For me, it realy is best of days out, perhaps visiting some twenty times over as many years, where in summer it is all dappled leafy glades, come autum and winter the smell of loam and fallen leaves. The forest is so huge, the trials so varied one visit will not be enough.
At the Centre is the forests GO-APE course. A tree top scramble, with thrills, but no spills, allowing to release your inner Tarzan, and ending with a flying decent down a long zip wire - some go Yippee ki-yay... some just scream.
A nice day out for both adults and children is to visit Fell Foot at he the southern basin of Lake Windermere. Children’s adventure playground, waterside cafe, rowboat hire, fishing and lake swimming. Finish off the day with an evening meal at either the Swan Hotel at Newby Bridge or The Lakeside Hotel at Lakeside.
This delightful walk is virtually on your doorstep, and where Clare walks our dogs each week.
Best approached from Grange over Sands, taking the narrow lane behind the library, you will spot the regulars parking place. The woodland is a tranquil place, with cool glades of native trees, abundant wildlife and undergrowth of holly, ivy and ferns. Come spring the floor is carpeted with bluebells, anemone, celandine and wild garlic, where the only sound is of the birds and the occasional drum roll of a woodpecker.
The northern boundary of the woods is the gateway onto Hampsfell. A geological marvel, this is one of the finest Limestone Pavements in the UK. As you climb the slopes to the summit the view is panoramic, out across the Morecambe Sands and around to the Cumbrian Mountains.
The highest point of the fell is just over 300m, and is marked by an old stone Hospice, with its stone seats, little fireplace, and the flat roof with an unusual summit viewfinder. It was built in 1846 on the old ancient route to the priory, where it still offers shelter to travelers.
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
Coniston lies in the lea of the mighty Old Man, a mountain for everybody. The village has some good pubs, and is very much a Cumbrian place, not to many fancy tourist shops. At the Boating Centre you can hire rowing boats, canoes, kayaks, sailing dinghies and little motorboats, great for getting out on the water and exploring the bays, beaches and coves, even more perfect with a picnic. Take a towel, as the lake is great for wild swimming. The Centre also hire road and mountain bikes which can be great fun.
There are lake cruises that make for a lovely day on the water, using them as a waterbus to stop off at the attractions around the lake such as Brantwood, home of John Ruskin.
The mountain and its valliys are excellent for walking and mountain biking, with routes to suit all abilities, and nearby is the mighty Grizedale Forest. There then, a place with much to do, and you can explore more by going to our Lakeland Guide Pages.
One of the best rambles is very close by at Sawrey. The Heights rise above the west shore of Windermere. You will need an OS Map, where you can then discover some wonderful woodland, three little tarns, and at the summit a fantastic view over Windermere. I think you can get individual walk pages in Hawkhead. Take a packed lunch and make a real day of it.
Wastwater is without doubt the most haunting and dramatic of all the lakes. The view across the water is to Scafell, Great Gable, flanked by Kirkfell and Lingmell. If the mist rolls in the mood is dark, and the knowledge that the waters drop down to some 258 feet adds to the drama. The lake is three miles long and half a mile wide with an easy walk along the west shore with plenty of places to picnic. The screes have a sort of track at the foot, but it is exceptionally hard going and I would strongly advise against attempting this difficult route. At the head of the lake is a very small village and the famous Wasdale Head Inn, much loved by climbers and serves excellent ale, good bar food and has a pro - climbing shop. Hidden away in a little field, behind a standing of fir trees, stands St Olaf’s Church. Said to be the smallest church in England, the little graveyard has memorials to climbers killed in the Himalayas, Scafell and Great Gable.
Scafell Pike, which at 978 meters it is the highest peak in England and considered one of the most difficult of climbs in the Lake District. Next is Scafell, which at 964 meters is the second highest peak in England and offers stunning views over Wastwater to the west and the Langdale Pikes to the east. Then there is Great Gable, Kirkfell and Lingmell, these along with a host of other peaks, pikes, needles and crags. It goes without saying that these are big climbs and you must acquaint your self with the area, get maps, check weather and equip well with the right clothing. I sometimes think that for some, going a comfortable part of the way, still getting some fantastic views and memorable photographs, is far better than overstretching ones ability.
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.