The mountains and valleys of the Lake District provide an inspirational backdrop to a walking holiday. One of the UK’s most famous poets, William Wordsworth, was born in Cockermouth, Cumbria and used the landscape as a muse for his poetry. He famously began the poem Daffodils with the line “I wandered lonely as a cloud”; referring to his many walks around the region. His book ‘Guide through the District of the Lakes’ published in 1820 was reputed to have put the Lake District firmly on the map for tourist trips, and it still remains the UK’s most popular national park attracting 15 million people a year.
Another famous Lake District resident was Alfred Wainwright, a British fell walker, guidebook author and illustrator, who documented 214 walks which still remain popular to this day. His Coast-to-Coast Walk, a 192-mile long distance footpath passes through three national parks – Lake District National Park, Yorkshire Dales National Park and North York Moors National Park – and is largely unsignposted.
Whether you’re a serious hill walker or want a more leisurely stroll, the region has it all, as well as some picturesque pubs for the obligatory lunch with a view! There are 20 peaks towering over 800 metres high, with Scafell Pike the tallest of them all. But don’t be put off if that seems too adventurous, here are some walks from beginner to expert.
A beautiful conical shaped mountain standing at 2,960 feet with great grassy swards leading to lots of scrambling rocks which is perfect for the more experienced climber. It’s a great walk from Crinkle Crag or try an excellent but challenging route up from the Langdales via Stool End and Rossett Gill. Search cottages near Bowfell.
Ennerdale Valley is the home to the Ennerdale Forest and Ennerdale Lake which has some picturesque walks. A full circle of the lake is about six and a half miles and there are good tracks that stay close to the shoreline and offer some stunning views. There are over 20 miles of forest roads providing some lovely walks up high into the valley and providing some great views across Wasdale and Buttermere. Search cottages in Ennerdale Valley.
Skiddaw is the fourth highest mountain in the Lake District. Despite its dauntingly grand appearance, there is a straightforward route to the top which has a fairly steady and manageable gradient. On a clear day, there are great views from the top over to Solway Firth in Scotland. Search cottages near Skiddaw.
Grasmere and Langdale
Starting at Grasmere, you can take a wonderful leisurely nine-mile walk up on to the fells between Grasmere and Great Langdale with amazing views over the lakes of Grasmere and Rydale Water. Once on the top of Silver How there is a ridge walk which weaved along up to Blea Rig with views over Langdale Pikes and Stickle Tarn. Search cottages near Grasmere and Langdale.
Scafell was once called The Pikes or the Pikes of Scawfell and is England’s highest mountain reaching a heady 3,210 feet. The Corridor Route is the most popular from Styhead Tarn to Seathwaite and winds its way through the most rugged rocks in England. The summit is mountainous and taking up the challenge will require most of the day. This is one that is more suitable for experienced climbers! Search cottages near Scafell Pike.