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3 wild spots to enjoy your book in the Lakes

Our lovely landscape has been the catalyst of inspiration for a number of literary greats who once called the Lake District home.

There’s something wonderfully mind mellowing about getting lost between the pages of a good book. Add in picturesque views, a flask of tea and a blanket for those frostier afternoons, and you’ve got yourself the perfect recipe for some magical mindfulness.

Here, we’re sharing our favourite little wild spots for you to take a seat, rest your legs, and enjoy your book in the loving arms of the Lake District landscape. 

Buttermere

Ahh, beautiful Buttermere. The lake by the dairy pastures.

A view so nice, you’ll see it twice. No, really! The reflections from the calm water perfectly mirrors the imposing pines that stand boldly on the shore. Splashes of Autumnal colour beam off the water when the leaves begin to change. And as for the summertime, those big blue skies resonate form the surface of the water, prompting even the most hesitant of swimmers to take a plunge!

Despite offering some of the best walking in Lakeland, it’s overshadowed by the natural beauty of Buttermere which really epitomises this place.  

The lake of Buttermere, set in its amphitheatre of mountains, is a soothing scene, made more dramatic by the play of light and shade in the narrow valley. A destination slightly further afield, (and accessed only by a single road), however one that is worthy of the journey.

Peace, prettiness and tranquillity in abundance. Bring a book, a flask of tea, perhaps a blanket for those colder days, and enjoy a big slice of heaven.

Experiencing some silence seems to be a rarity in our hectic lives today, and something we could do with much more of. Thankfully, Buttermere is somewhere that can offer just that (except for a few local sheep), meaning you can completely immerse yourself between those pages, reset your mind and feel refreshed.

If you’re lucky enough to visit in the Spring, then the Rannerdale Bluebells that appear nearby are something you shouldn’t miss. A nature lovers heaven! A blanket of purple rest on the hillside making for another ideal spot for you to take your book in one of Britain’s most beautiful places.

If you do manage to drag yourself away from Buttermere, and feel like some more calm is in order, then you’re just three miles away from Whinlatter Forest Visitor Centre. A place where you can get in touch with nature, wildlife and perhaps indulge in some forest therapy.  

Orrest Head

Quite suddenly, we emerged from the trees and were on a bare headland, and, as though a curtain had dramatically been torn aside, beheld a truly magnificent view

The view that changed the life of a young Alfred Wainwright, and as a result, inspired the lives of so many to this day. So, it’s only right we include Orrest Head in our top 3 places to enjoy your book in the Lake District.

Orrest Head has become a name synonymous with a quick fix for Lake District fell views. A short and (at times) steep 20-minute walk, and you’re at the top. Whilst you’re up there, (looking from West to Northwest at the summit) you’ll see Scafell Pike, Bowfell, Great Gable and Pike O Stickle. And towards the North, Wansfell, Red Screes and Kirkstone Pass are waiting to greet you.

The beauty of this place stems from its close proximity to the bustling community below, yet the overwhelming sense of seclusion and serenity within the landscape you feel upon emerging from the tree line.

Step straight off the platform at Windermere station and begin your accent. It’s that simple! 

 

Friars Crag

There are many reasons Friars Crag gets a place in our top 3 wild spots to enjoy your book. One of those being the fact it’s just a short walk from the town centre of Keswick, and another because of the incredible views over Derwentwater to the jaws of Borrowdale.

From the Market Square, stroll along Lake Road, through the gardens of Hope Park, follow the shoreline past the boat landings on Derwentwater, and you’ll shortly arrive at the viewpoint. ­

This local lake is just a ten-minute walk from the centre of town. To its west rises the fells of Cat Bells, with the entrance to the beautiful Borrowdale valley at the southern foot of the lake. And the fantastic viewpoint of Friar's Crag jutting into the lake sits to the east.

The Lake is very much a landscape of moods, and is best to visit early in the morning, as the mirror calm washes over the water.

Just back from the Crag is a monument erected in recognition of the writer John Ruskin’s first visit to Keswick (in 1824).

The words on the stone read ‘the first thing I remember as an event in life, was being taken by my nurse to the brow of Friars Crag on Derwentwater.

Ruskin was 5 at the time, and his first view from the crag clearly made a lasting impression. We think it'll be the same for you!

Years later he observed that the view from the Crag was one of the finest in Europe, and that ‘it was a place almost too beautiful to live in’.

It's easy to see why this is a place you shouldn't miss on your next trip to the Northern Lakes.