Lake-District
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Literary Walking in the Lake District

from $1,649.00

The Lake District National Park is England’s most visited national park and this 6 night self-guided walking holiday takes in some of the highlights. Whether you’re visiting the home of William Wordsworth while nibbling famous Grasmere gingerbread, surveying Lake Windermere from the top of Latterbarrow Fell, or following the Cumbria Way through beautiful country estates owned by the National Trust, you’ll be sure to enjoy an authentic Lakeland experience!

  • Reviews 16 Reviews
    5/5
  • Vacation Style Holiday Type
    Self-guided
  • Activity Level Easy plus
    4/8
All about the Literary Walking in the Lake District.

Jaw-dropping scenery, world-famous lakes and incredible literary connections – this 6-night holiday in the South Lakes has it all. The inspiration for writers like Wordsworth, Ransome and Potter, not to mention a plethora of other artists and poets, the Lake District is a place of incredible natural beauty; idyllic and exhilarating in equal measure. And, in 2017, it was awarded World Heritage status, with the committee praising the area’s beauty, farming and the inspiration it had provided to artists and writers.
The walks on this holiday take you to some of the Lake District’s most charming villages, where olde-worlde inns and speciality shops nestle against a backdrop of majestic fells, staggering mountains and shimmering waters. Your routes follow quiet country lanes and lakeside paths, dotted with babbling brooks, thundering waterfalls and shady forest. National Trust properties abound including Beatrix Potter’s former farm, Hilltop, while gems like the award-winning Hawkshead Brewery offer the best kind of refreshment.
You’ll stay in a 4 star country house hotel in Grasmere, a charming 17th century inn serving fine local ales in Hawkshead, and a waterside gem in Coniston – once frequented by Ruskin and Darwin – with a restaurant offering superb views of Coniston Old Man. Add an extra night in Bowness and you’ll stay in the stunning Laura Ashley designed Belsfield hotel, in an enviable location overlooking Lake Windermere.

The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What is included in this tour?Items that are included in the cost of tour price.
  • All breakfasts¬†and 1 dinner
  • 6 nights accommodation (hotel-to-hotel) in a mix of *** and **** hotels
  • Luggage transfers between hotels
  • Route notes and maps provided
What is not included in this tour?
  • Flights
  • Arrival & departure transfers (available on request, inquire for supplement)
  • Room upgrades and extra nights at selected hotels (inquire for prices and details)
  • Single Accommodation (available on request, inquire for supplement)

Highlights

  • Idyllic lakeside paths and quiet country lanes
  • Sections along the famous Cumbria Way
  • High fells, gushing streams and traditional Cumbrian stone villages
  • High-quality hotels serving excellent local fare
  1. Day 1 Day 1: Arrive in Windermere

    Arrive in Windermere, on the shores of the largest natural lake in England. We’ll transfer you by taxi to the Wordsworth Hotel in Grasmere.

  2. Day 2 Day 2: Grasmere Circular Walk 13km/8mi/4hr

    Welcome to Wordsworth country! After a gentle walk this morning around the meandering River Rothay, you’ll leave the village along the shores of Grasmere Lake, passing St Oswald’s Church – Wordsworth’s final resting place – and Rydal Water, of which the poet wrote: ’Like a fair sister of the sky, Unruffled doth the blue lake lie, The Mountains looking on.’ You’ll visit majestic Rydal Hall and Gardens – Wordsworth’s family home – and perhaps stop for a tasty pub lunch before following the old coffin road back to Grasmere; Nab Scar looms ominously above you and there are wonderful views across the water to Silver Howe. Back in Grasmere you can spend time at the Wordsworth Museum, Dove Cottage (where the poet lived with his sister from 1799) and the renowned Grasmere Gingerbread Shop!

  3. Day 3 Day 3: Grasmere to Coniston 17km/11mi/5hr

    It’s all about stunning scenery today as you make your way to the village of Coniston. After a short climb through either Hammerscar Plantation – overlooked by Loughrigg Fell and with incredible views over Langdale – or the shaded paths of the National Trust’s High Close Estate, you’ll descend into the breathtaking Great Langdale Valley where you’ll pick up the Cumbria Way walking trail. Here you’ll find Elterwater, the smallest of the Lake District’s 16 lakes and popular with huge Whooper Swans from Scandinavia! Follow the foaming River Brathay, enjoying spectacular views of the striking Langdale Pikes, and you’ll reach charming Skelwith Bridge – a perfect spot for riverside refreshments. We recommend a visit to the cascading waterfalls of Skelwith Force and Colwith Force, and the picturesque fishing spot of Tarn Hows, en route to your elegant hotel.

  4. Day 4 Day 4: Coniston Circular Walk 11km/7mi/4hr

    Coniston has inspired many literary greats and it’s not hard to see why. Heading south along the Cumbria Way you’ll meet the shores of the pristine Coniston Water which served as the inspiration for Arthur Ransome’s much-loved Swallows and Amazons. The majestic Old Man of Coniston – the local area’s highest fell at 803m – dominates the village skyline and presides over your route. Heading away from the lake you’ll find the old Viking village of Torver; the Church House Inn, which dates from 1378, is a great place to stop for a drink before making your way back to Coniston. This afternoon you could pay a visit to the Ruskin Museum, or head to the Black Bull, Coniston’s compact, multi-award winning brewery. The bar here has hosted several famous names including Turner, Coleridge and more recently, Sir Anthony Hopkins!

  5. Day 5 Day 5: Coniston to Hawkshead 12km/7.5mi/3.5hr

    Today you’ll visit Brantwood, the former home of Victorian writer, philosopher and artist John Ruskin. In a picturesque setting overlooking the lake, Brantwood is filled with fine paintings, beautiful furniture and a collection of Ruskin’s personal treasures. After your visit, head into the peaceful Grizedale Forest, a shady gem located between the lakes of Coniston and Windermere. The forest offers superb lake and mountain views and – perhaps unusually – a number of sculptures hidden away in the trees! Grizedale extends across Monk Coniston Moor and your last stretch of today’s walk takes you all the way to Hawkshead Moor, from where you’ll descend into Hawkshead village. Your home for the next two nights is the superb, C17 Queens Head Inn which overlooks the cobbled village square.

  6. Day 6 Day 6: At Hawkshead 13km/8mi/4hr

    The choice is yours today. Fans of Beatrix Potter will enjoy the National Trust’s Beatrix Potter Gallery in the centre of Hawkshead, followed by a visit to Near Sawrey’s Hilltop Farm, the former retreat of the world-famous children’s author. Now in the hands of the National Trust, Hill Top is a delight to explore. Wander the 17th century rooms where you’ll find Potter’s original writing desk, and walk through the pretty cottage garden – the inspiration for many of Potter’s tales! Another option is to head east, via pretty green meadows and the shimmering Blelham Tarn, to visit the National Trust’s beautiful Wray Castle. Back in Hawkshead, be sure to reward yourself with one of the brewery’s award-winning ales!

  7. Day 7 Day 7: Leave Hawkshead
  8. Day 8 Optional extension in Bowness

    We recommend adding extra nights to your holiday, to take advantage of our walk from Hawkshead to the popular lakeside town of Bowness-on-Windermere (12km/7.5mi/3.5hr). The route takes you through pretty meadows and woodland and up to Latterbarrow Fell (245m) from where you’ll enjoy incredible views across Windermere to Bowness. Descending to the lakeside, you’ll follow a waterside path along Windermere’s tranquil western shore; catch a ferry across to Bowness and take some time to explore this ever-popular town, before retiring to your Laura Ashley-designed hotel overlooking Lake Windermere.

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Where you stay
Tweedies Bar Lodge
Tweedies Bar and Lodge is a refurbished Georgian building with original features, located in the peaceful village of Grasmere. It is a family run business who pride themselves in creating a home from home experience. The Lodge itself has 16 rooms and is tucked discreetly away behind a wall of fir trees in the heart of Grasmere. The homely bedrooms and comfy lounge invites you to relax away from the bustle of modern life.
Wordsworth Hotel
In the centre of the popular waterside village of Grasmere, the historic 4 star Wordsworth Hotel is set in riverside gardens and features an award-winning restaurant, and an organic spa with an indoor swimming pool, a sauna and a jacuzzi. It also makes the ideal place for traditional afternoon tea, served in one of the beautifully appointed lounges or the conservatory.
The Coniston Inn
Situated on the shore of Coniston Water, and a 5 minute walk from the centre of Coniston, is the Coniston Inn. With a history dating back over a hundred years, it has previously hosted such guests as Charles Darwin and John Ruskin. The hotel features lawns running down to the lake and a restaurant offering a fine menu of local cuisine with spectacular mountain views. There is also a lounge bar offering local ales, snacks and afternoon tea.
Lakeland House
Nestled in the centre of Coniston village in the heart of the English Lake District is the family run Lakeland House. This cosy B+B is a distinctive red brick Victorian property featuring rooms which are individually decorated in a boutique style with, depending on the aspect, views of the village, fells or one of the Lake District’s most famous peaks, Coniston Old Man.
The Queen
Situated in the centre of the village, the Queen’s Head Inn has been welcoming visitors to the village of Hawkshead since 17th century. The inn has received an AA 4 star rating for its menu, and serves the finest local ingredients in a traditional country pub setting. Each bedroom has a modern tiled bathroom and a contemporary design, and some feature original beamed ceilings and a four-poster bed.
Eating and Drinking

Full English Breakfasts included throughout as well as the evening meal on the first night.

Try out traditional English country pubs for lunch or enjoy a picnic in the countryside. Please note, if you order a picnic from the hotel, please do so the evening before.

Activity level: 2 (Leisurely/Moderate)

The walks on this holiday take you to some of the Lake District’s most charming villages, where olde-worlde inns and speciality shops nestle against a backdrop of majestic fells, staggering mountains and shimmering waters. Your routes follow quiet country lanes and lakeside paths, dotted with babbling brooks, thundering waterfalls and shady forest.¬†National Trust properties abound including Beatrix Potter’s former farm, Hilltop, while gems like the award-winning Hawkshead Brewery offer the best kind of refreshment.

This is a self-guided tour, as such there will be no group or tour leader and you are free to complete the walks at your own pace. We have suggested that 8yrs is the minimum age for this trip, but as it is self-guided and you will be leading your own family we will ultimately leave this decision up to you.

Overall Rating
5/5
Reviewed On 28/08/2019
4/5

Mr Goodwin

A lovely taste of different low level walks available in the area which makes us want to go back and do more on our own. Walking notes were excellent and easy to follow despite being discouraged from doing so and lack of confidence in them provided at the briefing. Given how often it rains and n the Lakes some walks are a little unsuitable after seriously heavy prolonged rain and alternatives would be useful. But all in all a great trip with delightful views and interesting history.

Reviewed On 21/08/2019
4/5

Mrs Hayashida

We generally enjoyed good walking without any major issues. Our initial transfer to the hotel was not booked but we had a very good follow up from your local representative and staff. Also, one of the hotels was trying to charge room cost directly to us, but eventually they understood.

Reviewed On 13/08/2019
5/5

Mrs Papworth

Good value for money

Reviewed On 25/07/2019
4/5

Mr Eccles

As a Literary Tour it was thoughtfully planned, apart from Day 6 when your Highlights suggests alternatives, but the walk sheet offers only a rather unneccesary trip to Wray Castle. Surely the walk to Beatrix Potter's High Top (returning via Moss Eccles Tarn) should have been the first choice. The National Trust is establishing an off-road path from Hawkeshead, which we took to Near Sawrey. And the extension to Day 7/Bowness was a downer. Being thrust into such a touristy place took us away from the empty countryside world of our walk.

Reviewed On 10/06/2019
5/5

Ms Willoughby

Morgan did a wonderful job looking after us! And headwater was so well organised-we really loved our holiday Thankyou; will definitely travel again with you!

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