Complete A-Z guide of things to do in the Lake District
Ascents of Adventure – Windermere
This centre covers a wide range of outdoor pursuits in Windermere, and offers lots of Lake District activities such as rock climbing, scrambling and hill walking.
Abbot Hall Art Gallery Kendal
Abbot Hall was once the only Grade 1 Listed building in Kendal, apart from the Parish Church, and by the 1950´s such was its bad state, that it was threatened with demolition, until a group of local people formed a charitable trust to raise money and save the building. A long term use, however, needed to be found for the building and it was decided to turn it into an art gallery. As opposed to a gallery that displayed art, the Abbot Hall started its life as a derelict shell of a building that was saved in the nick of time.
Abbott Lodge Jersey Ice Cream Penrith
If you love ice cream, you haven´t lived until you try Abbot Lodge Jersey Ice Cream. Abbott Lodge, near Penrith, in the Lake District, is a working dairy farm that is set in magnificent scenery between the Eden Valley and the Northern Lake District. With over 40 different home-made ice creams to choose from, the farm attracts many visitors during the summer months. Abbott Lodge also offers a tea room, with home-made cakes and a range of drinks and snacks, indoor and outdoor safe play areas for children and a spacious function room for group education, meetings and parties.
Alhambra Cinema Keswick
This is the perfect place to take the kids on a rainy day (or on a sunny one come to that). The Alhambra Cinema is situated on St John´s Street, Keswick, and offers visitors excellent cinema entertainment in traditional surroundings. The cinema is open seven days a week and it prides itself on its tasteful decor, comfortable seating and great customer service. Such is the confidence of the Alhambra management of their high customer service skills, that a money back guarantee is offered on Sunday evenings if they fail to meet customer expectations. As well as showing the latest blockbusters, the cinema also hosts the Keswick Film Club every Sunday between October and March.
Aquarium of the Lakes Bowness
The Aquarium of the Lakes in Bowness is an award-winning aquarium which is top of the list when it comes to family days out in the Lake District. Situated on the quiet shores of Windermere, the Lakes Aquarium welcomes families, schools and offers educational trips, plus it is wheelchair friendly throughout. Windermere is the most popular attraction in the Lake District and if you are looking to stay near the lake, there are plenty of boutique hotels, guest houses and B&B accommodation near Windermere and Bowness.
Brockhole Visitor Centre
Idyllically situated on the shores of Windermere, and admission is free, though you have to pay for the car park. There are interactive exhibitions, the Mawson gardens, an adventure playground, a shop, cafe and information centre. You can enjoy lake shore access, and catch a cruise to or from Waterhead (the northern end of the lake, a short distance from Ambleside).
Beatrix Potter Attraction Bowness
The Beatrix Potter Attraction at Bowness includes all 23 Tales by Beatrix Potter, brought to life in a magical indoor recreation of the Lakeland countryside, complete with sights, sounds and even smells. This is one of the most popular attractions in the Lake District, and provides the perfect family day out. You can meet Peter Rabbit in Mr. McGregor’s garden, discover Jemima Puddle-duck in the woodland glade and visit Mrs. Tiggy-winkle in her kitchen, plus discover plenty of information about Beatrix Potter who lived in the Lake District, and was inspired by the local countryside and wildlife to write her children´s books.
Beatrix Potter Gallery Hawkshead
The Beatrix Potter Gallery was once the office of solicitor, William Heelis, who Beatrix was married to. The 17th Century building is now home to the original watercolours and sketches of Beatrix Potter, and displays a fascinating exhibition on the life of the famous children´s author. This authentic 17th Century Lakeland townhouse offers plenty for children, including quizzes and goodie bags. There is also a ´Conservation in Action´ room which teaches visitors about the value of conservation in the Lake District.
Beckstone´s Art Gallery Greystoke Ghyll Penrith
Beckstone´s has earned a world-wide reputation for exhibiting very high quality original paintings by some of the best contemporary artists in the UK. The specially chosen artists cover a wide and varied spectrum of styles and subject matter, and they all paint to excellent standards. Beckstone´s is a family-owned gallery and the friendly, informal atmosphere represents that. A knowledgeable and informative team of professionals are always at hand with information and advice about the artists and their works.
Blackwell Art and Crafts House Bowness on Windermere
One of Britain´s finest houses, Blackwell retains much of its authentic decorative features and it is undoubtedly one of Britain´s finest houses. Wonderfully preserved, special features of the house include the hessian wall-hangings in the dining room and a wealth of fine detail and intricate design, including the leaf-shaped door handles and strange window catches, and the incredible stained glass and wood panelling. Blackwell is one of the world´s most important icons of arts and crafts architecture.
Brougham Hall Penrith
A fortified home since at least 1307, Brougham Hall reached its pinnacle in the Victorian Era, when it became known as the Windsor of the North, and was home to the Lord Chancellor of England. Situated more or less half way between Windsor and Balmoral, Brougham boasted King Edward VII and the future King George V as frequent visitors. The hall was rescued from dereliction in 1985, and Brougham has become the subject of the largest country house restoration project in England.
Cookhouse Gallery – Bowness-on-Windermere
Relaxed & informal art gallery in Bowness-on-Windermere, the Cookhouse Gallery offers a great display of high quality fine art prints.
Country Lanes Lake District – Windermere
Quality cycle hire in the Lake District close to Lake Windermere. A wide range of bikes available include full suspension and hybrid. Tours can be arranged.
Cumbria Balloons – Bowness-on-Windermere
Hot air balloon flights in Windermere. Early season deals available. Champagne trips offered and much more to make this an experience of a lifetime in the Lake District.
Coniston Falconry Centre
If you are looking for a fabulous way to entertain the family in the Lake District, look no further than the Coniston Falconry Centre. Home to an array of magnificent birds of prey, the centre offers a variety of hands on experiences for the whole family to enjoy. Half day and full day tickets are available.
Carnegie Theatre Workington
Historic Carnegie Theatre and Arts Centre in Workington is one of the town´s most well known buildings and it hosts a regular programme of music and dance events, which can be enjoyed by local people and tourists alike. Classes and courses are held weekly and the community café within the building is a popular meeting place. Monroe´s Bar is one of the Lake District´s best live music venues, and attracts visitors from all over Cumbria.
Cars of the Stars Motor Museum Keswick
The Cars of the Stars Motor Museum was founded by Keswick painter and sculptor, Peter D Nelson. The local car enthusiast was approached in 1982 by Granada Television, which was filming the TV series ´The Spoils of War´, to ask if they could borrow Nelson´s MG TC for use in their production. This set the seed in Nelson´s mind to build a motor museum, featuring vehicles used by celebrities in films and on TV. This unique museum opened to the public on the 1st May, 1989.
Castlegate House Gallery Cockermouth
The Castlegate House Gallery at Cockermouth displays contemporary paintings, sculpture and ceramics from worldwide artists. These include the Cumbrian painters, Sheila Fell, Percy Kelly, Bill Peascod, June Bennett, Charles Oakley, Winifred Nicholson, LS Lowry and Michael Bennett, plus a host of world-renowned artists.
Coast Aquarium Maryport
The Lake District Coast Aquarium is situated on the quayside at Maryport, a small historic port on Cumbria’s western coast. This is one of the best places to see a wide range of marine life from the Irish Sea. A huge variety of fish and invertebrates (starfish, lobsters, etc) are housed in 50 carefully themed and informative displays, and the whole family can learn more about marine life close-up.
Coniston Launch at Coniston Water
Coniston Launch offers a variety of ways that you can enjoy a beautiful boat cruise on Coniston Water in the Lake District. Regular services cover three different circular routes on Coniston Water, and visitors can either stay on the boat for the full cruise or stop off at any of the jetties and catch a later boat back. One of the most popular trips includes combining a boat cruise with a walk around the shore of Coniston Water.
Coronation Hall Ulverston
One of the most important buildings in Ulverston, Coronation Hall has the largest capacity of any similar building in south Cumbria, and it offers visitors an excellent range of entertainment, including performances by highly-acclaimed touring companies who perform music, theatre, ballet and opera. The hall is also a lively community venue where local arts are performed.
Cumberland Pencil Museum Keswick
The Cumberland Pencil Museum was opened in the former pencil factory in 1916, and the former building had various owners in its 175-year history. Visitors can enter the museum through a replica of the Seathwaite mine where graphite was first discovered 350 years ago. Through words, pictures and carefully restored machinery you can trace the history of pencil making and see how Derwent Fine Art Pencils are made today. The video theatre shows a presentation detailing the history of pencil making in Keswick, including the current production methods. Be amazed at the World´s Longest Coloured Pencil, and see a World War 2 Pencil designed like a James Bond Gadget.
Dairy Cottage Studio Kirkby Lonsdale
A professional artist who was born in Lancashire in 1953, William H. Jones developed a unique style of painting with watercolours, and specialises in fine art. He has exhibited widely since his first exhibition in 1972, and his paintings are included in many collections in the UK and abroad. William exhibits regularly at the Lake Arts Society Exhibition and has many limited edition prints.
Dalemain House and Gardens Ullswater
Dalemain House is situated near Ullswater, on the northern fringes of the Lake District. The house is a real treasure, and Dalemain continues to attract visitors from far and wide. The fantastic and historic house and gardens contain a wealth of Tudor and Medieval rooms and buildings. There has been a settlement at Dalemain since Saxon times, when a fortified pele tower is mentioned and the present day courtyard is testimony to the defensive nature of the hamlet surrounding that tower.
Derwent Water Marina Keswick
Close to Keswick, Derwent Water Marina is the perfect location for water sports and mountain activities, and courses in sailing and windsurfing are among the most popular activities offered. Groups and individuals can also try kayaking, canoeing, ghyll scrambling, rock climbing and raft building, plus a host of other activities. Visitors can also hire a rowing boat and explore the river for themselves.
Dove Cottage and Wordsworth Museum Grasmere
Today, about 70,000 people visit Dove Cottage, a Grade 1 listed building, every year to explore the old house that once belonged to William Wordsworth. All visitors are offered a guided tour, telling the story of the house and family. Many of the Wordsworth’s household items: furniture, family possessions and portraits are displayed. The garden, which Wordsworth described as a ‘domestic slip of mountain’, has been restored to the half-wild state that he and his sister, Dorothy lovingly created from local plants and materials.
Eden Ostrich World Langwathby Penrith
A family run business, Eden Ostrich World is located at Langwathby near Penrith, and hosts a working farm and visitor centre, which opened to the public in 1998. Dramatic changes within the agricultural industry meant that Eden Farm was struggling to survive, until the owners started to explore new farming ideas and created Eden Ostrich World.
Fell Foot Park Windermere
Fell Foot Country Park is situated beside Lake Windermere, near Ulverston, and offers substantial access to the lakeshore of Windermere, excellent picnic areas and rowing boat hire, which is ideal for family days out. Impressive displays of daffodils and rhododendrons in season and magnificent views of the Lakeland Fells make Fell Foot one of the most visited parks in the Lake District.
Florence Mine Heritage Centre Egremont
Florence Mine is an iron ore mine at Egremont, which is the last deep mine in Western Europe. The ore was first mined in large quantities in Cumbria in the 1830s, but it wasnt until 1898 that the Florence Mine came into operation. The ore in the mine is red in colour, which created the nickname ´Red Men´ for those hardy labourers who worked in the mine. Visitors to the centre can experience life in the mine by taking an underground tour, or for the less adventurous, visit the museum with a replica of the mine on display.
Glebe Recreation Ground – Bowness-on-Windermere
The Glebe Recreation Ground in Bowness on Windermere offers a range of activities to suit all the family, including crazy golf / pitch and putt. A great place to take the kids.
Garden and Watermill Penrith Acorn Bank
The Acorn Bank Garden and Watermill is situated at Temple, Sowerby, close to Penrith in the north-east of Cumbria, and it belongs to the National Trust. Here you will find Englands largest and best garden in culinary and medicinal herbs with fine oaks which are surrounded by a vast display of daffodils in spring. Within the walls you will find two orchards with fruit trees, herbaceous plants and roses. Also featuring a partially restored watermill and an excellent tearoom, this attraction is one of the most popular in the area.
Go Ape at Grizedale Forest
If Go Ape at Grizedale Forest was in the dictionary it would be described as a ‘high-wire forest adventure’. Giant obstacle courses are built in the trees using ladders, walkways, bridges and tunnels made of wood, rope and super-strong wire, and the centre also boasts some of the country’s best zip lines (including the longest at 426 metres). Visitors are given a 30 minute safety briefing and training, and then, once fitted out with harnesses, pulleys and karabiners, are let loose on the forest canopy. Instructors are always on hand, regularly patrolling the forests, and the result is spectacular. The Go Ape experience gets the adrenalin pumping, gets people out of their comfort zones and above all, is great fun.
Horse Riding in Windermere
Horse riding is another great way to combine sightseeing with some adventure, having fun pony trekking outdoors while taking in the beauty of the Lake District.There are a number of companies offering horse riding tours along a number of different trails winding through some of the most beautiful scenery in England.
Hawkshead Courthouse is all that remains of the medieval farm belonging to Furness Abbey, which until the dissolution of the monasteries in 1537, owned the whole of High Furness. The building was originally part of the east side of a quadrangle, and consisted of a gatehouse with the court room above. This is the only part to have survived the destruction of the other buildings, and, after passing through various hands, it was given to the National Trust in 1932.
Hill Top Sawrey Hawkshead
Hill Top is the charming 17th Century farmhouse where Beatrix Potter wrote many of her famous children´s stories, and many of her original possessions and belongings are still in evidence in the house. Hill Top was the model for the ´Samuel Whiskers´ Illustrations and many others, and the house was left to the National Trust when Potter died in 1943, on the proviso that it was kept as she left it. Visitors can also find a Beatrix Potter Shop, selling gifts and souvenirs.
Holker Hall and Gardens Grange over Sands
Holker Hall is the home of Lord and Lady Cavendish who welcome visitors from all over the UK. Situated close to Grange-over-Sands and the expanse of Morecambe Bay, Holker Hall is located in one of the most scenic areas of the Lake District, and boasts gardens that merge into parkland, framed by the hills of Lakeland.
Home of John Ruskin Brantwood at Coniston Water
Former home of John Ruskin, Brantwood at Coniston Water is one of the most beautifully situated houses in the Lake District. Brantwood is both an exceptional house of great historical importance and a lively centre of contemporary arts and the environment. The house welcomes over 30,000 visitors a year, and displays and activities in the house and gardens reflect the wide range of cultural activities associated with John Ruskin. These include the Arts and Crafts Movement, to the foundation of the National Trust and the Welfare State.
Honister Slate Mine the Lake District
The Honister Slate Mine will take you back to the days of early mining in the Lake District, and visitors can explore the tunnels around the Honister Pass and the mine workings at this fascinating museum. It is thought the first slate was mined from Honiston during the Roman Era, and slate has been used as a building material in the Lake District for many Centuries. era, although it is quite monastic buildings and it has been used as a common building material for houses in the Lake District ever since.
Jennings Brewery Cockermouth
Jennings Brewery was originally established as a true family concern back in 1828, in the village of Lorton. The company moved to its current location in 1874, in the historic town of Cockermouth, in the shadow of Cockermouth Castle, at the point where the rivers Cocker and Derwent merge. The brewery was recently closed because of flooding during November, 2009, so check out the website for re-opening dates.
Kankku Off Road Driving – Windermere
Kankku offers a 4×4 offroad driving experience in the Lake District. Rally team days offered. Corporate rates available and families welcome.
Kendal is situated on the edge of the Lake District and is home to one of the country’s oldest museums. Opened in 1796, Kendal Museums fascinating collections include local archaeology, history, geology and a natural history collection from around the world. The museum also has a changing programme of temporary exhibitions and displays, events, walks and talks.
Keswick Museum and Art Gallery
Keswick Museum and Art Gallery in the Fitz Park was first built at the turn of the century for the inhabitants of Keswick and the visitors thereto The grand opening of the museum was on Easter Monday April 11th 1898, and it has remained virtually the same ever since, apart from the provision of electric lighting and heating. The incredible range of displays make Keswick Museum a fascinating place to visit for all the family. The picture gallery opened in July 1907.
Lakeland Segway – Graythwaite Estate
Unique guided Segway Lake District tours. Introductory tours and adventure tours offered. Special offers available.
La Galerie D’Art – Bowness-on-Windermere
La Galerie D´Art is a gallery in Bowness on Windermere, often displaying unique prints and limited editions.
Lakeland Miniature Village Grange over Sands
With over 100 buildings, made from local Coniston slate, Lakeland Miniature Village is made up of houses, farms and barns which create a Lakeland landscape, and water features are situated around the village. The Oriental Building also attracts many visitors with its gift shop and views over the Oriental Garden.
Lakeland Sheep and Wool Centre Cockermouth
The Lakeland sheep are among Cumbria´s most famous residents, and visitors can meet 19 different breeds of sheep during an indoor presentation. You can sit back and relax in a custom-built theatre and discover a wealth of interesting facts about each breed. There will also be a display of highly-trained sheepdogs, which can skilfully handle a flock of geese, plus some special guests such as chicks and lambs, depending on the time of year you visit.
Lakeland Wildlife Oasis Milnthorpe
The Lakeland Wildlife Discovery Centre is home to exciting and exotic displays of wildlife and some of the best interactive exhibitions in the Lake District. Taking visitors through 3,000 million years of evolution, and following the development of life on earth, a vast range of exhibitions range from chameleons, computers and fossils, and many threatened species are kept here as part of an international breeding programme.
Leighton Hall Carnforth
The historic home of the world-renowned Gillow furniture making family, Leighton Hall at Carnforth is a stunning location for a day out, or an exclusive wedding venue. Its romantic Gothic towers and acres of beautiful gardens lure thousands of visitors every year, who are as enthralled with Leighton’s fascinating heritage as they are with the stunning surroundings. Well worth a visit.
Levens Hall Kendal
Levens Hall, a large Elizabethan house and Grade I listed building, dates mostly from the late 1690 s. The original construction, a 1350 pele tower, was built by the de Redman family in a time when Scottish border raiders were a threat, and the hall is still a popular attraction today. The de Redmans remained owners until 1562 when the Bellingham family took over. The house and beautiful gardens attract thousands of visitors a year.
Little Salkeld Watermill near Penrith
Restored in 1975, Little Salkeld Watermill is Cumbria’s only fully operational watermill, committed to the production of high quality flour using British grain. With the help of a small, dedicated team of people, this business and its products are both unique and special. Currently it produces a wide range of biodynamic and organic stone-ground flours milled the traditional way using clean, self-renewing waterpower. Regular bread-making and arts courses are held at Salkeld.
Lonsdale Cinema Penrith
Located in the heart of Penrith, the Lonsdale Cinema provides a first class cinematic experience, screening all the latest cinema releases in comfortable and relaxing surroundings. Open every evening, you’ll find a warm welcome and an extensive range of confectionery and refreshments to accompany your visit. Great for the kids when the weather is bad!
Maryport Maritime Museum
The Maryport Maritime Museum houses a wealth of objects, pictures, models and paintings that illustrate Maryports proud maritime and painting history. The collection at the Museum was initially based on the donations of items by local resident Miss Annie Robinson, and consisted almost entirely of artefacts from the town of Maryport. Miss Robinson helped to set up the museum in 1974. The collection has grown in all areas since then. During the refurbishment of the Museum in the 1990s several items were obtained on long-term loan to be used in the displays.
Mirehouse Historic House near Keswick
Set in the middle of the north Lake District, Mirehouse Historic House near Keswick boasts stunning gardens and plenty for visitors to discover, including the Poetry Walk, Rhodedendron Tunnel and the Walled Bee Garden. Visitors can also discover the strong connections Mirehouse once had to Lord Tennyson, Thomas Carlyle and William Wordsworth. If you want to make a day of it, try the delicious offerings at the Sawmill Tearoom, including a range of Cumbrian cooking and home-made cakes and puddings.
Muncaster Castle and Gardens
Muncaster Castle is said to be haunted, and this family home is one of the most majestic houses of its kind in the Western Lake District. The castle hosts private weddings, functions and parties, and the beautiful backdrop of the fells is stunning. The Pennington Family have lived at the castle since 1208 and the amazing gardens have kept visitors coming to Muncaster for many years.
Museum of Lakeland Life Kendal
This award winning Museum transports visitors back to the early days of the Lake District and its inhabitants. The Lake District was pretty much isolated before the arrival of the railway and motorcar, and the area developed its own unique customs and traditions. Recreated period rooms and workshops reveal how rural people lived, worked and played and visitors can see how different life was before the introduction of machinery. Visitors can see a traditional 17th century Lake District kitchen, a bedroom with old 4-poster and rare 18th Century oak panelling.
Nichol End Marine Portinscale Keswick
Nichol End Marine is in one of the most beautiful settings in the country. Located in a naturally sheltered harbour at the northern end of Derwentwater, Nichol End Marine attracts thousands of water-sports enthusiasts each year, offering a wide range of activities on and off the water. Nichol End Marine is a family run business, where families, groups and individuals can experience the unique atmosphere and have plenty of fun into the bargain.
Pinfold Gallery – Bowness-on-Windermere
This is an exciting contemporary art gallery in Bowness on Windermere exhibiting paintings, jewellery and furnishings. Artwork available to buy.
Platty + Derwentwater Keswick
Platty+ is a small family run water sports business on the shores of Derwentwater in the heart of the English Lake District. The centre offers visitors a high standard of both hire and tuition, and members of staff are experienced in dealing with individuals and groups, children and adults (including those with special needs), families with young children, corporate groups and school parties.
Plaza Cinema Workington
All the latest blockbusters are screened daily at the Plaza, Cinema, Workington, plus each Wednesday the cinema offers less mainstream films including independent drama, documentary, foreign language and digitally re-mastered classics.
Priory and Buddhist Temple at Morecambe Bay
The Priory and Buddhist Temple is situated at the southern end of the Lake District, near Morecambe Bay, and the Manjushri Kadampa Meditation Centre provides a peaceful and inspiring environment where people from all walks of life can learn about the calming influence of meditation and Buddhism. The centre is open to everyone and provides visitors with a year-round programme of meditation classes, courses and retreats that offer practical advice about the teachings of Buddha and how they can influence life today.
Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway
The Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway runs for seven miles (11.3 kilometres) from the Lake District National Parks only coastal village of Ravenglass in the Western Lake District, through hidden Miterdale, to the grandeur of the Eskdale valley. The terminus at Dalegarth for Boot – home to our new visitor centre – nestles at the foot of Englands highest mountains.We run at least six trains daily from 21st March to 1st November, but are also open most winter weekends, and throughout the Christmas holidays and February half term.
Royalty Cinema Bowness
The Royalty Cinema in Bowness was built in 1926, and has three screens for the latest releases and also screenings of less commercial films. This is the perfect place to take the kids if the weather takes a turn for the worse!
RSPB Nature Reserve
Leighton Moss is home to the largest reed bed in north-west England, and a range of special species of birds can be seen here, including: breeding bitterns, bearded tits and marsh harriers. You might see deer too, not to mention a wide range of butterflies.
Ruskin Museum Coniston
The Ruskin Museum has been situated at Coniston since 1901, when WG Collingwood, a local artist, who was also John Ruskin´s secretary, set it up as a memorial to John Ruskin, an art critic and social thinker. The museum also celebrates the area´s heritage. Exhibits relate to the copper mines, slate, geology, lace, farming and the late, great Donald Campbell who lost his life on Coniston Water, while trying to break the speed record in 1967. Interactive exhibitions and a range of computer displays were added to the museum in 1999, when it won a Heritage lottery grant.
Rydal Mount home of William Wordsworth near Ambleside
Rydal Mount, near Ambleside, dates back to the 16th Century when the house was a small yeoman style cottage. The older part of the house became the family dining room of William Wordsworth and his family, and Dorothy and Dora Wordsworth’s bedrooms were situated on the first floor. The house has good entertaining space and the Wordsworth´s threw a great many parties in the Drawing Room. Both the Drawing Room and Library contain many original pieces of furniture, personal effects of the Wordsworth family and some incredible portraits.
Sellafield Visitors Centre
The original Sellafield Visitor Centre is now the Sellafield Centre, and is open Monday to Friday, and is only used for business events. A small section is still open to the public but only at selected times. At its peak, the Visitor Centre attracted an average of 1,000 people every day, but with its popularity declining, the centre has now become a conference facility.
Senhouse Roman Museum Maryport
Dramatically sited on the cliffs overlooking the Solway Firth near Maryport, this award winning museum is next to a Roman fort which was probably founded on the orders of the emperor Trajan, and then rebuilt during the reign of Hadrian, nearly two thousand years ago. Visitors flock to see one of the largest ranges of Roman artefacts in the UK.
Sizergh Castle and Garden Kendal
The beautiful medieval house of Sizergh Castle near Kendal was extended during Elizabethan times, and is surrounded by rich gardens and estates, plus some of the most stunning Lake District countryside. Visitors can see an incredible range of oak-panelled rooms and an inlaid chamber. Portraits and fine furniture are also displayed, and it is worth a trip to Sizergh just to see the gardens. Walks from the castle to viewpoints over Morecambe Bay and the Lake District fells can be enjoyed by all the family. The castle is still inhabited by the Strickland family who built the estate in the Middle Ages.
South Lakes Wild Animal Park Dalton in Furness
This is one of the best places to take the kids in the Lake District, and a wide range of animals can be seen feeding and living in this superb wild animal park. Animals include the African Lion, the black footed penguin, the giraffe, the Hamadryas Baboon and the Pygmy Hippo plus many species from Asia and around the world.
Stagshaw Garden Ambleside
Stagshaw Gardens is a steep, woodland garden, noted for its flowering shrubs. Created by the late Cubby Acland, Regional Agent for the Trust, Stagshaw contains a fine collection of shrubs, including rhododendrons, azaleas and camellias, and Skelghyll Woods next door offer delightful walks and access to the fells beyond.
St Martin’s Church – Bowness-on-Windermere
St Martin´s is a beautiful church in Windermere which is open to visitors on Wednesdays and Thursday mornings. Churchyard is open at all times.
Surf the Turf – Bowness-on-Windermere
Surf the Turf is a mountain-boarding centre in Windermere. Helmets, pads and boards available for hire. Beginners welcome. Some discounts available.
Swimming in Windermere
There are several great places to swim at Windermere, and you can swim from almost any shore where there is public access, but beware, the water is very cold. Just west of Windermere town you will find Millerground. From Bowness take the A592 north, past the Steamboat Museum and into a Park and Ride car park. Follow the footpath to the lake. Beware of boats heading for the public landing stages and always stay within the marked area. Red Nab at Windermere is also a popular place to swim.
Stalwart at Rookin House Centre Penrith
Amaze your passengers and surprise yourself as you take a trip on an amphibious all-terrain army vehicle. You will be amazed what this awesome vehicle is capable of. Each trip includes one person to drive (must hold a driving license) and loads of passengers. The Stalwart offers the ultimate all- terrain drive.
Steam Yacht Gondola Coniston Water
Gondola is a re-built elegant steam yacht providing the most wonderful, nostalgic sailing experience. The original Gondola was first launched in 1859 and the present-day Gondola reflects and brings to life the splendour and luxury of the Victorian era. Passengers can enjoy the stunning backdrop provided by the Coniston Fells and its majestic lake, and can also relax in the opulent saloons while enjoying the gentle gliding motion of this vessel, which is an experience in itself.
This unassuming 16th century manor on the outskirts of Ulverston is famous for its association with George Fox and the founding of Quakerism. Swarthmoor Hall was built around 1586 by George Fell, a local lawyer. On his death it passed to his son, Thomas Fell, who moved here in about 1634 with his wife Margaret, then only 18.
The Armitt Collection Ambleside
The Armitt is a unique place combining gallery, museum and library, and it offers visitors a real insight into the Lake District. The Armitt is a treasure-trove for scholarship and fun, art and entertainment, and it encapsulates all that is best about Lakeland and its people. The Armitt is situated in Ambleside, Cumbria, in the very heart of the Lake District.
The Brewery Arts Centre Kendal
The Brewery Arts Centre in Kendal is a multi-purpose arts complex presenting a year round programme of theatre, music, films, lectures and exhibitions, together with a range of amateur participatory activities including art and craft workshops, Cumbria Youth Theatre, and several classes and courses.
The Heaton Cooper Studio Grasmere
The Heaton Cooper Studio is a fine art gallery which also sells art materials and books, and it is located in the village of Grasmere, surrounded by beautiful scenery in the heart of the Lake District. The gallery and art shop is a family business which was first established by artist Alfred Heaton Cooper in 1905. His artist son William Heaton Cooper built the present gallery in Grasmere in 1938. For generations their paintings and books have influenced the way the landscape of the Lake District has been viewed and visitors can enjoy a wide range of paintings
The Mountain Goat – Windermere
Lake District tours company based in Windermere offering a range of day trips, short breaks and holidays throughout the Lake District and also Nationwide
Troutbeck Bridge Swimming Pool at Windermere
Family friendly indoor swimming pool with gym in Windermere in the Lake District.
Total Adventure at Bowness-on-Windermere
Provides outdoor fun including canoeing, kayaking, abseiling, archery, canyoning, rock climbing, & zip wire! Great for families, team building, & group parties!
Quayside Kids – Bowness-on-Windermere
Quayside Kids is a friendly and affordable children´s indoor play centre near Lake Windermere. Coffee and sandwiches are available. Private parties catered for.
The Old Laundry Theatre Bowness
Situated in Bowness, the Old Laundry Theatre enjoys a perfect location in the heart of the Lake District, and hosts a lively annual season of music, theatre, comedy and film. Opened in 1992 by Sir Alan Ayckbourn, the Old Laundry Theatre is run by Bowness Theatre Festival Ltd, and also enjoys financial and practical support from The World of Beatrix Potter Attraction, which shares the premises.
The Quaker Tapestry Kendal
A modern tapestry, this international community project explores three centuries of social history within 77 fascinating panels, and is situated in Kendal.
The Rum Story Whitehaven
Set in the original 1785 shop, courtyards, cellars and bonded warehouses of the Jefferson family, The Rum Story at Whitehaven has been authentically designed to provide all-weather family entertainment. During a visit to The Rum Story, you will travel through a tropical rainforest, an African village, a realistic slave ship, Cumbrian cottages, a Coopers workshop and much, much more. The Rum Story provides a fantastic family day out.
Theatre by the Lake at Keswick
Theatre by the Lake is one of the most beautifully located theatres you can find in England. Located very close to the shores of Derwentwater and nestled on the edge of the pretty market town of Keswick, Theatre by the Lake enjoys an incredible location. Whether you are visiting for an evening of first class entertainment, thought-provoking drama or simply to feed the ducks, this Lakeside theatre is a must- visit attraction for locals and visitors alike.
Thornthwaite Galleries near Keswick
Thornthwaite Galleries near Keswick is a contemporary art gallery with exhibits from many local artists. For 35 years Thornthwaite was a country gallery and a centre of excellence for artists wanting to exhibit the very best art. Changing exhibitions have responded to the subtle shifts in cultural expectations which take place from season to season and which continue to reflect the tastes of a contemporary market.
Townend near Troutbeck Ambleside
Townend is a 17th-century Lake District stone and slate house, and the former home of a wealthy farming family. This is a classic Lakeland home of a well-off yeoman family, and visitors can meet Mr Browne, the latest member of a 400-year-old farming dynasty to live here. Visitors can also see rag-rug making. Ornately-carved oak furniture, some pieces made by the family, are also displayed.
My Ravenand My Lady of the Lakeare two 19th Century steamers, which were converted to oil engines, and used for cruising on Ullswater, one of the most beautiful of the English Lakes. Ullswater Navigation & Transit Co Ltd started operating steamer services in 1859, carrying mail, provisions and passengers around the lake. Raven was built in 1889 at Rutherglen near Glasgow. Lady of the lake was launched in 1877, and both vessels have been in service ever since. During the 1930s both were converted to diesel. M.V. Lady Dorothy is their smaller sister, and joined them in 2001. The Ullswater Steamers provide visitors a great way of exploring the lake and the area and are well worth a visit.
Whitehaven Civic Hall
Whitehaven Civic Hall is an increasingly popular and varied entertainment venue and it is an ideal location for wedding receptions, dinners and private parties. The Solway Hall holds a total of 600 people standing or 400 people seated and can be used for an extensive variety of events and functions. Stage lighting, a PA System and ticket printing facilities are also available.
Wheelhouse Club – Bowness-on-Windermere
Nightclub and bar in the Lake District near Windermere.
Windermere Lake Cruises
Windermere Lake Cruises are one of the best ways to explore the longest lake in England at your own pace. Stop off where you want, when you want and take advantage of the beautiful Lakeland walks around Windermere, while criss-crossing this famous waterway by steamer.
Windermere Canoe Kayak – Ferry Nab
Canoeing and kayaking tuition centre in Windermere, also offering sit on top hire and bike hire. Wetsuits available.
Windermere Golf Club – Cleabarrow
Windermere golf course offering searching views of the Lake District. Visitors welcome, some 2 for 1 special offers and a clubhouse with a snooker room.
Windermere Steamboat Museum – Windermere
The Steamboat Museum in Windermere, exhibits historic boats including Beatrix Potter’s rowing boat. Vintage steamboat rides offered and the museum provides a great family day out.
Wordsworth House Cockermouth
On 22 June 2004 Wordsworth House reopened, imaginatively presented for the first time as the home of the Wordsworth family in the 1770s. The house offers a lively and participative visit with hands-on activities and costumed living history. Rooms on display include a working 18th-century kitchen, the children’s bedroom, Mr John Wordsworth’s offices and other family rooms. The garden, with terraced walk overlooking the River Derwent, has been attractively restored to its 18th-century appearance as the favourite playground of the young Wordsworth family. The house is currently closed after flood damage in November, 2009, but check out the website to see when the attraction is expected to open.