What surprised me most when planning my first trip to the Lake District this year was quite how large it is. In fact, the UNESCO World Heritage Site spans a total of 912 square miles! It quickly dawned on me how important it was to stay somewhere somewhere best suited to my interests – if I was keen to hike Scafell Pike for example, staying over an hour away in Kendal probably wouldn’t be the best choice! Whilst some spots offer a quiet, secluded getaway, others are bustling towns with great restaurants and plenty of activities. Here are my top 4 spots to stay in the Lake District to help you pick the place best suited for your perfect holiday!
For Walks: Coniston
In the South of the Lakes is Coniston, a popular destination amongst walking enthusiasts. Here you can take your time exploring the beautiful natural landscapes the area is famed for, from Furness Fells to Tom Gill Falls to Dow Crag – don’t forget to pack your camera and a sturdy pair of walking boots!
For Adventure: Buttermere
Whilst Buttermere itself is a quaint, quiet village, the nearby activities promise plenty of adventure for thrill-seekers. Perhaps most notable is Scafell Pike, the tallest mountain in England, where thousands of walkers flock every year to catch a glimpse of the summit’s panoramic views. The Honister Via Ferrata Xtreme is also only a short drive away. Scramble across cargo nets, clamber up cliff edge ladders and brave vertical climbs to reach the summit of Fleeetwith Pike!
For Watersports: Bowness on Windermere
The town of Bowness on Windermere is larger than many of the other quaint villages on offer in the Lakes. It’s a great spot for families with plenty of shops, watersports, sailing, and cafes, as well as easy access to the Beatrix Potter attractions! This is the perfect spot to try something new like kayaking or stand up paddle boarding.
For History: Grasmere
Grasmere is the perfect place to explore some of the cultural history of the Lakes. The poet William Wordsworth and his wife Mary Wordsworth both taught at the village school and have a tombstone in St Oswald’s Church, and nearby you can also find Dove Cottage, where he wrote many of his greatest poems, and his sister Dorothy kept her Grasmere journal. The Grasmere Gingerbread shop is another popular haunt, run by the third-generation descendants of Sarah Nelson, a famous Victorian chef.