With summer just around the corner and the weather starting to look up, it’s that time when many of us start looking to book a break away.
But instead of heading straight for the cheap flights to the same old same old resort, why not discover the natural wonders right on your doorstep here in the Lake District?
Here are 21 reasons why a Lake District ‘staycation’ could just be the break you’re looking for, put together in conjunction with Lake District Country Hotels.
If there’s one thing that most people flock to the Lake District for, it’s to walk. There’s something for walkers of every ability level too, whether it’s a stroll around one of the lakes, or one right up to the top of one of the fells, complete with a bit of scrambling.
Some of the Country’s Best Restaurants
The Lake District has also quietly built up a reputation as a foodie haven and is home to some of the best restaurants in the whole country.
Easy to Get to
One of the best things about the Lake District is how easy it is to get to, without any need for flights or trains.
You can simply jump in your car and head up at your own pace, and travelling by car also means that you can stop off at all of the little towns and villages that you’ll discover on the way.
None of the Hassle of Travelling Abroad
It’s something we don’t like to mention when booking a holiday abroad, but travelling can be a lot of hassle!
Your flight being delayed, problems at the check-in desk, cramming all your stuff into a tiny hand luggage bag, jetlag…
None of this is an issue with the Lakes, where you can simply pack your bags and set off.
The Lake District is the perfect place to visit with somebody special, whether you want a nice secluded break for just the two of you, or perhaps with the kids in tow as well.
What could be more romantic than relaxing on the shores of some of the biggest lakes in the country, or with a glass of wine by a roaring fire at after a day at the spa?
The Lakes is also home to a thriving pub and bar scene, whether it be beer gardens where you can enjoy the sun and the views or some pubs and inns which date back many centuries, with great features such as old fireplaces and low ceilings.
Older pubs such as the Old Dungeon Ghyll and The Mortal Man prove popular, especially with walkers and outdoorsy types and many pubs, such as The Bitter End and Hawkshead Brewery even brew their own tipples for you to enjoy!
Across its woodlands, beaches, fells, parks and gardens, the Lake District is home to some wonderful and varied wildlife.
One of the most popular is the red squirrel, but also keep an eye out for buzzards, kestrels, ospreys and golden eagles in the sky, and red deer, grey seals, otters, and even two lynxes down on the ground!
The Lake District also has plenty of literary connections, the most famous of which is without doubt William Wordsworth, who lived and worked at Dove Cottage near Grasmere from 1799 to 1808.
Today the cottage is full of Wordsworth memorabilia, and if you head out to the back you’ll find his own ‘domestic slip of mountain’, the garden where he would sit and while away the hours writing his poetry.
Another local literary hero, Beatrix Potter, created some of her most loved characters at this farm house in Near Sawrey.
She lived here from 1905 until her death in 1943, when she bequeathed it to the National Trust.
Nowadays you can wander around the house, where you can spot a number of features from the books. Just try to get there early, before the queues really start.
Ullswater Steamers Cruises
There’s nothing better than actually getting out onto the lakes which make this region so famous, and the Ullswater Steamers are supposedly the oldest working boats in the world, at an amazing 140 years old.
Try to visit on the weekend of the 24th of June. Where there’ll be special commemorative cruises celebrating the big anniversary!
Honister Pass separates the valleys of Borrowdale and Buttermere and is home to one of the Lakes’ most unique attractions, the Honister Slate Mine.
It’s one of the last working mines in the area, with a number of attractions such as underground tours, a 200ft Infinity Bridge, and one of two Via Ferratas (climbing with the assistance of fixed cables and ladders).
This house was owned by John Ruskin, the great Victorian polymath who was an art critic, philosopher, writer, and more, from 1871 until his death in 1900.
Ruskin filled the house with great examples of furniture, antiques, and works of art which he collected on his travels, all of which can be visited today on a visit to the house.
Wordsworth House and Garden
For a much quieter alternative to Dove Cottage, head to Wordsworth House, the poet’s childhood home in Cockermouth.
Costumed guides will show you around the old house, which gives a fascinating insight into Wordsworth’s formative years, with regular temporary exhibitions to check out as well.
Beatrix Potter Gallery
While she was best known as a children’s author, Beatrix Potter was also a student of the natural world.
In Hawkshead, you’ll find this tiny gallery which showcases some examples of her studies of fungi, flowers, and flora and landscapes inspired by the countryside in which she grew up.
This beautiful house was designed at the turn of the 20th century by architect M.H. Baillie Scott and is one of the finest examples of the Arts & Crafts style of architecture.
A reaction against the industrial revolution, almost everything in the house is handmade making it a really interesting visit.
The Lakes Distillery
Craft breweries are having a resurgence throughout the country, and no less so in the Lakes, where The Lakes Distillery opened a couple of years ago on the shores of Bassenthwaite.
The distillery is already building up a solid reputation, with a range that includes gin, vodka, and a blended whisky made with river water straight from the Lakeland fells.
The distillery has its own bistro, tasting bar and tour which delves into the distilling process.
Keswick Mountain Festival
Anyone with a love for the great outdoors will be right at home at the Keswick Mountain Festival, which takes place from June 8th to 11th.
The largest festival of its kind, over 17,000 descend on the town for the weekend to celebrate all things mountains, with live talks and cinema screenings.
The Lake District is also home to one of the best and quickest growing festivals in the country: Kendal Calling.
This year’s festival (featuring big names such as The Stereophonics, Franz Ferdinand, Tinie Tempah and even The Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson) sold out in record time, however, tickets for the 2018 festival recently went on sale, so get in there nice and early!
This traditional show, held in the beautiful grounds of Lowther Castle, features such events as carriage driving, clay shooting and gundog championships.
Grasmere Sports and Show
The Grasmere Sports Show has been running for over 160 years now and is a showcase for local sports such as fell running, Cumberland & Westmorland wrestling, and hound trailing.
Of course, we couldn’t finish without mentioning the warm and welcoming hotels we have on offer here at Lake District Country Hotels!
Our stylish and spacious rooms are perfect for chilling out at the end of a long day adventuring the Lakes, all within the beautiful scenery of Lake Windermere and the surrounding fells.