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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.
If you are staying in or near Cartmel then prepare to eat! Apart from being the prettiest village in the Lake District, with stunningly beautiful architecture, it has the most delicious food you will find anywhere. Simon Rogan's L'Enclume has featured on TV, has a Michelin Star and has just toppled Heston’s Fat Duck as the Good Food Guides Numero Uno eatery. Next we have Rogan’s more casual Rogan & Company, I think just as nice but half the price. Then there are the four pubs, I like them all, all serving local ales and decent pub grub. So there you are - if you love dining this is the place for you.
Not many will know this walk as it lies on the southern shores of the Morecambe Bay. The drive is easy, via Levens, down to Milnthorpe and round to Arnside. You start from the pier and simply follow the shoreline for as far as you fancy. Rock pools, limestone cliffs, wooded headland and miles and miles of shimmering sand, with a view back to the Cumbrian Mountains.
The sands are dangerous as they are magnificent, and only the shrimp fishermen and the sands guides venture out from the shoreline with their tractors. For us mere mortals it is enough to wonder at the seemingly never ending miles of shimmering silver sand, the birdlife and to thrill as the tide with its bore rushes in on its twice daily cycle.
Do give it a go and remember to take a camera, along with a light picnic, where you are sure find the perfect spot among the rock pools or up on the low cliffs to while away some time before retuning home.
Morecambe Bay Cross Bay Walks. It is still possible to cross the sands, still a designated public highway, by joining in with a guided walk. These are led by the renowned Cedric Robinson MBE and Queens Guide, also by Alan Sledmore. For details and walk dates see the links.
First, stroll round to Unsworth Yard and select a few ripe cheeses, then into the bread shed for a crusty loaf. Ponder a while and choose a few fine ales from the micro brewery, then round to the village store for some salami.
Next, drive up Haggs Lane and onto the Grange Fell Road, park at the Golf Club and walk onto Hampsfell, a magnificent limestone ridge rising up above the village. The walk to the summit is quite easy, where you will find the most amazing natural lime stone pavement, the old stone Hospice, with its stone seats, little fireplace, and the flat roof with an unusual summit viewfinder, along with the most amazing panoramic view out across the bay and back towards the Cumbrian Mountains.
Stay a while, and chomp away happily with the most stunning view to fill your gaze. The Rug? Standards must always be kept, and it can get windy, so cuddle up and enjoy.
Take photos of yourself for fond memories.
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 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
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.
Kankku offers you a real off road driving adventure, putting you in the driving seat of their specially prepared 4x4 vehicles, where you can discover the Lake District from a new angle.
First time or advanced expeditions are available for individuals, families or groups to take the wheel of these mountain monsters, or you can bring your own 4x4 if you are happy to trash it. Learn new driving skills as you are expertly guided on challenging rough and rocky off road terrain on a gripping journey with a spectacular lake and mountain backdrop.
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!
The restored Victorian Steam Yacht Gondola offers an unrivalled sailing experience on Coniston Water travelling in style in Gondola’s opulent saloons or relaxing on her open-air decks.
You can join the day to trips around the lake and a memorable experience it will be.
Now here's the thing - you can hire the yacht as a private venue. Imagine escorting your loved one aboard and setting sail with just the two of you - and the crew. Perhaps arrange a lunch, with champagne and strawberries, and if you haven't as yet, make the proposal. Or maybe you are here in the lakes celebrating your partners or a family members birthday or wedding anniversary. What could be a better way of marking the occasion than you and your family and friends sailing around the lake, in private, without the hubbub of others?
Its not cheap, however the more of you there are the better the head rate seems, the question is - is she or he worth 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.
Honister Slate Mine is an adventure for all ages. The last working slate mine in England, you can go deep underground on a fully guided mine tour. Learn the history of the best and most beautiful green slate, and watch a demonstration on how slate is split. Wrap up warm, as it can be damp in the mine. There is a café for refreshments after your tour.
The Via Ferrata - The Iron Way
For the brave and the seeker of thrills, then try Honister’s Via Ferrata, or Iron Way.
Set on the side of Honister Pass, high above the beautiful valley of Buttermere, this really is a unique, some would say scary, experience.
There are two different courses. The Classic course follows the ancient miner's cliff-edge footpath, high on Fleetwith Pike. The Xtreme is more of everything including the Burma Bridges; a wire bridge suspended 2,000 feet above the Valley floor and a 66foot vertical cargo net to finish off.
Not for the feint heated or those without a head for heights but a must for thrill junkies.
You are clipped to a cable so safety is ensured, but in no way detracts from the thrill.
The Fairfield Horseshoe is one of the classic Lake District rounds - a splendid walk taking in all the peaks surrounding Rydal. The ridges are linked together with an ascent of Fairfield and offer fine high level walking with only the minimum up and down once their peaks have been gained. The views are stunning with the best the summit of Fairfield.
Most of the Lake District peaks are visible from the top and it's the perfect place to view Helvellyn. Weather Note – It is a large area, and the walk is best done in fine clear conditions, as if the weather closes in you can become disorientated – That apart, it’s a super walk, and who wants to walk in the rain or mist anyway - no views! The walk starts from Nook End Farm, up Nook Lane, just off the Kirkstone Pass
This is the one walk everybody should do. The track starts from the southern basin of Ullswater, going all the way to Howtown. Your journey takes you through the most splendid fell and moorland, with a view of the serpentine lake always there to keep you company.
Take a camera for some stunning shots of yourself in a cracking setting. If you make it to Howtown, you can catch a launch back to Glenridding, a splendid way to finish the day - if not you will have to return the way you came.
PS. Check the boat times.
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.