Explore the Western Lake District in 2017

A world away from frantic Windermere is what is often called “The Other Lake District”, consistently as “Quiet and Beautiful” and arguably containing the “Region’s Best Views”. We are talking about the Western Lake District.

Growing in popularity yet for some significant years yet, this areas around the Eskdale and Wasdale valley’s will most certainly offer all of the descriptions above.

Everything about this region of the Lake District National Park is about getting out and about. The two distinctly difference valley’s offer a variety of outdoor adventures for all ages and abilities.
Starting with Wasdale, home of England’s highest peak, Scafell Pike and the deepest body of water, Wastwater. The valley is framed by the monster fells of the Lake District so naturally it is the place to be for fell walking, climbing, ghyll scrambling and mountain biking. Head onto the mysterious Wastwater for canoeing, kayaking, stand up paddle boarding and diving.

western lake district activities

Onto the equally as dramatic but definitely with an air of prettiest is Eskdale Valley. Travel to the valley by steam via the Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway taking visitors through the Western Lake District countryside including woods and the villages of Eskdale Green and Boot. Open air, the steam train is an absolute must and definitely not just for kids, adults and even dogs have smiles on their faces! The Eskdale Valley is the gateway to the Central Lakes via the steepest road in England, Hardknott Pass. From the valley take on Scafell Pike from the other side, enjoy miles of mountain bike routes, take on the mighty Hardknott Pass even if it’s just to visit the ancient Roman Fort at the top. Slightly less taxing is a walk to Stanley Ghyll Force. Eighteen metres of crystal clear waterfall.

With plenty of places to eat and drink, traditional Lake District properties to stay in, and activity providers such as West Lakes Adventure who offer group, family, couple or individual experiences of all of the activities in this blog, discover the Western Lake District in 2017.

Walking and wandering around Crosthwaite and the Lyth Valley

When it comes to picture postcard scenery be it pretty villages, woodlands or undulating foothills, the Lyth and Winster Valleys including Crosthwaite are hard to beat.

Although well known and discovered by tourists, namely thanks to an extremely famous purple fruit the damson, the area retains its peacefulness and tranquillity and definitely offers a very different Lake District experience to that in Ambleside and Bowness.

You won’t find large crags, server gullies or sharp gradients when walking in this area unlike some of the Lake District. Instead enjoy views over Lake Windermere, rolling countryside, valleys and woodland paths perfect for any level of walker or wanderer. Walk towards Lake Windermere, perhaps one day towards Kendal or take a glance the other way and see Morecambe Bay.

walking lake district lyth valley
A destination for any time of the year, the region is a delight April when the damson trees are in full white blossom and in September when these rare trees are weighed down with this highly distinguishable, tart purple fruit. A post walk damson gin is a must!

Walker friendly accommodation can be found at Damson Dene Hotel which will be an even bigger attraction to walker with the special “Walking in the Lakes” package. Enjoy 2 night accommodation, 3 course evening meal on the first night, full Cumbrian breakfast each morning, access to maps and guide books in the area and packed lunches all from just £110 person. Post walk, relax and unwind with free access to the private onsite leisure club.

Leisurely walking on the Lakes Line from Kendal this spring

Less than a minute walk and you’re in the centre of Kendal from the train station. This station connects travellers to the West Coast Mainline at Oxenholme – the Lake District, the next stop making a car free holiday or weekend break extremely convenient and practical (and most importantly, enjoyable!).

Onwards from Kendal are stops at Burneside, Staveley and Windermere each offering great walking potential and most definitely, don’t discount Burneside or Staveley. Burneside for great low level countryside walks and the Staveley being a lovely village with lots of places to eat and drink and which the Kentmere Valley can be accessed for one of the most undiscovered locations in the Southern Lake District.

kendal walking

Ideas for walks can be obtained even easier now by a new leaflet produced by train enthusiasts of 5 walks from stations along the Lakes Line. Find these leaflets at staffed stations across the North of England as well as Tourist Information Centres. Travel by train, no traffic jams, better for the environment and the ultimate in relaxed travel.

Kendal, the official gateway to the Lakes naturally provides an ideal base for exploring the region on foot, by rail, bus as well as by car. Take advantage of the great choice of places to stay and affordable too. The Riverside Hotel is our pick with river view rooms, a restaurant for dining as well as a bar and the Sanctuary Health Club with pool, spa pool, sauna, steam room and gym, free to use for all hotel guests. On now, a 2 night spring deal from just £188 (only available when booking direct) based on 2 sharing including breakfast each morning, unlimited use of the health club and a 3 course dinner on the first night. Visit http://www.riversidekendal.co.uk/ for more information and to check availability.

Walking – Lake District – Langdale

Walkers, ramblers, hikers, could do far worse than visit the quite simply, stunning Langdale Valley in the English Lake District.

Completely and utterly unspoilt yet so close to the hustle and bustle of Ambleside with amenities galore and the scenery, well it’s hard to beat. Wherever you stay in the valley there’s a plethora of walks from meandering strolls to 10+ milers, basically something for everyone.

For those who prefer a stroll then head along the Chapel Stile road and do the Great Langdale valley floor walk, Flat and at just 3.25 miles it is a lovely little walk to do of an afternoon before a spot of afternoon tea.

langdale active hotel

A fantastic walk around the 9 to 10 mile mark is the circular walk taking in Great and Little Langdale. Not that taxing really but a decent walk and one that will have more than earned a hearty Lake District dinner and naturally, a couple of pints of real ale. The walk has a good path and the 360 degree views breath taking.

For the more adventurous than even Scafell Pike can be done from this start location as well as Great Gable. For experienced walkers then this is quite a treat and well worth doing. To be able to experience such diverse landscapes of the Lake District National Park in one walk is quite something (and sometimes quicker than driving!).
Stay at Langdale Hotel & Spa in the Lake District and visit their Langdale Active website, http://www.langdaleactive.co.uk where there’s lots of walks mapped and detailed. With a brand new restaurant due to open next month, it’s a walker’s paradise.

High brow hiking in the Lakes

Whether you call it walking, fell walking or hiking, getting about on two legs is more popular than ever in the Lake District.
It is arguably the best way to explore the area as it enables the fell tops to be accessed which opens up jaw dropping views. Walking is also great exercise, gets visitors into the open air and outdoors and is the most sustainable form of getting about.

But hiking has literally been taken to the next level in recent times and especially by the luxury boutique hotel, Brimstone on the Langdale Estate. Walk directly from the hotel and experience a walk to suit any ability from shorter low level walks to those being able to take in the highest fells in the area which are also some of the highest in the whole of the Lake District. Although this hotel could easily fit in within a city, its roots are firmly in the Lake District and none more so than with their Berghaus Bootroom. Guests of the hotel can visit the bootroom and borrow any of the Berghaus walking gear there for use during the stay.

luxury lake district walking bergahus brimstone

So with the location and the gear it seemed natural to start to offer luxury hiking break packages to entice novices and newbies to fell walking. The package offered by Brimstone continues the ethos of the company for sustainable travel so guests will be collected from Windermere Station and taken to the hotel. Staying in one of the luxury suites at Brimstone is an experience itself but remember it’s about walking too so maps and guidance will be given and the Hosts at the hotel will drop off and collect guests if required to and from the chosen walk start. The Reading Room with complimentary snacks and beverages will most definitely be enjoyed after a full days hiking before choosing to dine in room or in one of the restaurants on the estate. Contact Brimstone luxury Lake District hotel on 015394 38062 or visit http://www.brimstonehotel.co.uk/ for more details.

In and around the Langdale Valley are some stunning walks of which a handy selection has been compiled by Brimstone’s sister hotel, The Langdale Hotel also on the estate, http://www.langdale.co.uk/self-guided-walks.html

Great holiday cottages for Lake District walking breaks

Lets face it, not everyone is into fell walking and venturing to the great outdoors during winter. Just as so many relish trudging through mud, getting battered by wind and feeling “refreshed” with beating rain, it’s definitely not everyone’s cup of tea.

So it’s now a very exciting time as near spring with green galore, a warming of the air, longer days and fingers crossed, drier weather. The fells have been waiting for do many of you so the time has come to get that break booked for a spot of fresh air and walking in the Lake District.

lake district walking breaks

The internet provides us with some excellent ideas for walks from locations to difficulty and the treasurers to admire when you’ve reached the top. We don’t mean to bore but it is essential you have an OS map and compass (and knowing how to use both items) is a must for even some of the lower level walks. But back to the walks and well, they’re endless.

Picture postcard and low level then Rydal and Grasmere routes are a delight. Photo opportunities galore, views of the fells with stunning lakes in the foreground. Head across to Coniston and the terrain is more rugged and if you can venture up a gradient, the views are worth it taking in Morecambe Bay and even Blackpool Tower on a super clear day! Coniston Old Man is somethign well worth tackling and saying you’ve completed. Best for a valley walk with the option to head to the hills is the Langdale Valley. The true heart of the Lake District, this valley is easily accessible from Ambleside yet is the gateway to the Western Lake District via the Wrynose and Hardknott Passes.

With walking ideas and cottages to match, the Lakeland Cotatge Company have self catering walking breaks all sewn up. For more information on their walking tips visit, https://www.lakeland-cottage-company.co.uk/holiday-cottages-lake-district/walks-and-days-out/ and to browse their portfolio of luxury holiday cottages where 99% have walks right from the cottage door, visit, https://www.lakeland-cottage-company.co.uk/