Things to do
The Lake District is one of the UK’s most stunning areas, with the Unesco World Heritage Site and National Park hosting all the wonderful Lake District Attractions for you to visit and enjoy.
We have a wealth of Lake District attractions, from museums, beautiful gardens, historic houses, boats and theatres to name a few. Alongside attractions such as this there are the breathtaking Lakes themselves and surrounding forests and mountains, where staying in a Lake District cottage will give you the best of both worlds – indoors and out.
Here’s a small selection:
This vibrant family attraction is based in the heart of Bowness-on-Windermere and it brings to life the 23 famous tales written by Beatrix Potter. You’ll also experience a short welcome film about Beatrix Potter, the author and farmer.
Fans of the author will get to meet their favourite characters from her books, including Peter Rabbit, Mrs Tiggy-winkle and Jemima Puddle-Duck.
The Potter magic doesn’t end there as visitors can look around Peter Rabbit’s Garden and see the gooseberry bush where Peter got caught in a net as he tried to escape Mr. McGregor. There is also a gift shop where you can pick up a souvenir to remember your day.
Tel: 0844 504 1233
World of Beatrix Potter
The award-winning Ullswater Steamers are one of the worlds largest heritage passenger fleets and offer visitors to the Lakes some of the most stunning cruises to beautiful parts of the national park.
Winner of various tourism awards the Ullswater Steamers have added a new cruise to their collection, which visits the stunning Aira Force waterfall.
Cruises can be as short as 20 minutes or as long as two hours, and you can even opt for the all-day, round-the-lake pass that enables you to jump on and off the boats as many times as you like.
The scenery around Ullswater is stunning and going on a cruise is certainly one of the best ways to see some of our highest mountains and variety of wildlife. You’ll view Helvellyn and Striding Edge from the water.
The steamers are also perfect for transporting walkers to and from the miles of bridleways that link to Steamer routes and the recently created Ullswater Way which goes all the way around this beautiful lake.
Tel: 017684 82229
Blackwell, The Arts & Crafts House, which was designed by leading British architect and designer Mackay Hugh Baillie Scott, is one of Britain’s finest historic houses and is internationally renowned for its arts and crafts architecture.
Located in Bowness-on-Windermere, the house was built between 1899-1900 as a holiday retreat for the Manchester brewery owner, Sir Edward Holt, his wife Elizabeth and their five children.
Blackwell is now one of the most important surviving examples of the late architects work and is the only house designed by Baillie Scott to be open to the public.
Tel: 015394 46139
The Coniston Boating Centre has helped visitors to this beautiful spot since 1977 and their RYA qualified staff help people enjoy the area via boat or bicycle.
The centre is a not-for-profit attraction run by the Lake District National Park and visitors can enjoy rowing, kayaking, Canadian canoeing, sailing and paddle boarding.
If land activities are more your thing then one of the best ways to explore Coniston is by bike and fortunately the area is home to a number of picturesque routes. The centre has adult and child bikes, tag-along bikes, bikes with a trailer and electric bikes.
If you are feeling a bit peckish then the Bluebird Café, located on the lakeshore, is a great place to stop and grab a bite to eat as it offers some stunning views of the surrounding area.
Tel: 015394 41366
Lowther Castle & Gardens is a romantic ruined castle presiding over 130 acres of lost historic gardens that have been rediscovered and are now in the process of being given new life.
Closed to the public for over 70 years the castle and grounds became the subject of one of Europes largest reclamation and restoration projects in 2011. The current gardens lie over the top of late 17th century remains, often to the same footprint, and have survived in varying degrees as wild woodland or the Victorian and Edwardian designs.
There are beautiful original features mixed with wild areas that house protected and endangered wildlife, all defined on the west side by a limestone escarpment with stunning views over the fells.
The castle and gardens are open every day other than Christmas Day from 10am to 4pm during the winter and 10am to 5pm in the summer.
Tel: 01931 712192
Levens Hall is an Elizabethan mansion built around a 13th-century Pele tower. It is world famous for its topiary gardens, fountain garden and buttery, licensed restaurant and gift shop.
There is a living willow labyrinth and a children’s play area in the historic topiary garden, which boasts challenging climbing apparatus and slides for children under 12 years as well as picnic tables for families to enjoy lunch.
Levens Hall really is the gateway to the Lake District and is well worth a visit.
Tel: 015395 60321
Lakes Aquarium is a real family treat and visitors staying in Ambleside and Troutbeck cottages or anywhere else in the Lake District can see creatures from the lakes of the world as well as creatures that are a little closer to home.
From otters and diving ducks to marmoset monkeys and British sharks and rays, there really is so much to see at the aquarium.
The incredible walk-through underwater tunnel is a real treat and is home to the breathtaking diving ducks. Don’t miss the world’s first virtual dive bell where you can discover just how fast a crocodile can swim!
Tel: 015395 30153
Whinlatter Go Ape! Is not only a great day out in the North Lakes but also offers fantastic views of the area – the attraction is the highest Go Ape in the country at 360 metres above sea level.
Ride the zip wires through the air, over water and in England’s only true mountain forest you’ll love the spectacular views.
Be aware that the minimum age for visitors is 10, the minimum height is 1.40m/4ft 7 and the maximum weight is 130kg /20.5 stones. All children must also be accompanied by an adult.
Tel: 0845 643 9215
Hutton in the Forest boasts a historic medieval Pele tower with substantial 17th-, 18th– and 19th-century additions as well as fine collections of furniture, ceramics, tapestry and portraits.
Visitors can walk around the wonderful walled garden, which is still surrounded by a medieval forest, and can quite easily spend all day at this historic house.
There are varied outdoor summer events – Plant and Food Fairs, open-air Shakespeare, Potfest in the Park, and Horse Trials to name a few.
Tel: 017684 84449
Image Credits: The World of Beatrix Potter, Ullswater Steamers, Lakeland Motor Museum, Tony West, Lowther Castle & Gardens, Levens Hall.
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