Get inspired by the natural beauty of Cumbria’s Lake District

My friends and I are planning a long weekend away over the next couple of months and are considering the Lake District. We’ve heard so much about it and as we want to go somewhere that offers value for money and a selection of activities in the area so we think it’s the perfect choice. We’d love some suggestions on what to see and do while we’re there.

My friends and I are planning a long weekend away over the next couple of months and are considering the Lake District. We’ve heard so much about it and as we want to go somewhere that offers value for money and a selection of activities in the area so we think it’s the perfect choice. We’d love some suggestions on what to see and do while we’re there.

The Lake District in Cumbria is the perfect destination for a weekend break; it offers a great mix of traditional villages, larger towns and some of the most breathtaking views in the British Isles. Made up of 12 lakes and an abundance of walking routes, the Lake District National Park has something for everyone whether you want to scale the mountain heights, enjoy a great choice of exciting attractions or to drop into a Cumbrian pub to enjoy a tipple after an action packed day.

With such a wealth of natural riches, it’s hardly surprising that the Lake District is one of England’s favourite places for savouring the great outdoors, but there’s much more on offer in the region than the beautiful views.

The Lake District is well known for providing inspiration to some of the most famous literary figures including Beatrix Potter and William Wordsworth. Two places well worth a visit in the south of the region are Grasmere where Wordsworth’s Dove Cottage is open to the public and Hawkeshead where Beatrix Potter’s Hill Top farm house can be visited.

With five of the tallest mountains in England and some of the deepest lakes, Cumbria’s rich natural environment attracts walkers from across the globe. Catering for people at every level of fitness, no trip to the Lake District would be complete without getting out into the fresh air and taking a walk through the countryside. For the more adventurous, there are also some more extreme outdoor activities on offer from trekking and cycling to rock climbing and abseiling.

The largest and best known of the lakes is Lake Windermere in the south of the National Park. At ten miles long it dominates the southern region of the park. At the top of the lake you’ll find the picturesque small town of Ambleside which is a haven for walkers.

For non-walkers and those wanting more relaxed activity, there is the modest Ambleside Museum which offers an insight into Lakeland life. The museum is home to a range of exhibits including a lock of John Ruskin’s hair, a collection of botanical watercolours by Beatrix Potter, and prints by the pharmacist turned photographer Herbert Bell.

For the ultimate Lake Windermere experience, there are a number of boat trips that run the length of the lake on a daily basis and all year round. The cruises stop at the bustling town of Bowness-on-Windermere, home to the popular World of Beatrix Potter attraction, before heading on down to the Aquarium of the Lakes which lies at the water’s very southern tip.

If you’re looking to enjoy some gastronomic delights, Lucy’s on a Plate is the place to go. With premises dotted all over Ambleside, as well as a Windermere you can enjoy some of Lucy’s trademark quirkily named food, such as ‘fruity porker’, ‘fell-walker filler’ or ‘pruned piggy-wig’.

Where to stay

Regent by the Lake Hotel (***)

Prices start from €123 per room per night on Hotels.com

This three-star hotel is located on the shores of the beautiful Lake Windermere and just minutes from the village of Ambleside. This family-run hotel is an ideal base for exploring all that the area has to offer. Guests can enjoy a complimentary hot and cold full English buffet breakfast each morning and full use of the hotel’s indoor pool.

Riverside Hotel (***)

Prices start from €86 per room per night on Hotels.com

This three-star hotel is located on the beautiful banks of the River Kent in Kendal and is close to Kendal Museum, Kendal Castle, and Abbot Hall Art Gallery. Relax and unwind after a day of exploring the Lake District in the hotel’s health club with includes an indoor pool and spa. The hotel’s restaurant has an ever changing menu which offers a great selection of meals, made from locally sourced products.

Hallmark Hotel Carlisle (****)

Prices start from €92 per room per night on Hotels.com

The Hallmark Hotel Carlisle is the perfect base for those looking to explore all the wonderful sights of Carlisle and Eden Valley. Sights close to this Victorian property is Green Market, Carlisle Guildhall, and Carlisle Cathedral. Guests can also enjoy complimentary newspapers each day.

*Prices are subject to availability at the time of booking

For more information and travel tips on planning your holiday visit www.hotels.com or call 1800 55 3338 to wake up happy on your holiday!