So, you’ve chosen – or are thinking of choosing – a walking holiday in the Lake District. Give yourself a pat on the back! This mountainous region in North West England was recently voted Britain’s favourite National Park – and rightly so! More than a quarter of us voted for the Lake District to top the charts in YouGov’s poll in search for the nation’s favourite. After all, the World Heritage site is described as ‘poetry in the hills’ by Lonely Planet.
With so many walks to choose from, each route really can be a revelation. Whether you’re looking for a gentle stroll or something more intense, make sure you pack your best hiking boots and get ready to take in the picturesque-postcard views on offer in the Lakes. Here, alongside Cragwood Hotel, a great choice for Lake District accommodation, we run you through five of our top treks.
The Helvellyn Ridge Walk
Let’s throw you right in at the deep end. This route, albeit tough, offers unrivalled views when you reach its peak. With the Helvellyn hike once voted as Britain’s favourite walk, this added extra includes more dramatic and challenging ridges for those who would like to push themselves that little bit further. With panoramic views like no other when you reach the summit of Helvellyn, this route is a must for any keen walker.
Distance: 12 milesView Post`
Expected duration: 8 hours
A circuit of Buttermere
This serene spot is nestled away from the often hustle and bustle of Lake Windermere. It’s a popular location for budding photographers thanks to its calm and quiet nature providing some of the best views in Britain. On this family-friendly route you are likely to find Herdwick sheep grazing and, if you go in spring, the Rannerale Knotts will be carpeted in bluebells. This route is also hugely popular for a dander in the evening.
Distance: 4.5 miles
Expected duration: 3 hours
The Ullswater Way
It’s now possible to walk the entire circuit of this lake after a new route was created following the floods in 2015. However, if 20 miles sounds too much for you, there are shorter options that are clearly signposted. On the route, you will find artworks, including the Wainwright Sitting Stone and the Dorothy Gate. Plus, no visit to Ullswater is complete if you haven’t went sailing on what many describe as the most beautiful lake in the area.
Distance: 20 miles
Expected duration: 10 hours
Scafell Pike from Seathwaite
One of the most popular walks for those who head to the Lake District is the journey up Scafell Pike – England’s highest mountain. This route is often used for those taking part in the national Three Peaks Challenge and is thought by many as being the hardest of the trio due to its necessity of a technical approach because of a lack of a ‘tourist path’. Once you reach the summit, the panoramic views overlooking the Lakeland fells make it all worthwhile, but it’s important to note that higher parts of this walk can prove tricky in poor weather conditions.
Distance: 9 miles
Duration: 7 hours
Windermere western shore
Of course, any walking guide for the Lake District wouldn’t be complete without a mention for what is considered to be one of the busiest stretches of water in the area. However, if you want to find a quieter spot, head to its western shore and discover a peaceful shore walk that’ll allow you to bask in its beauty.
Distance: 5.5 miles
Duration: 4 hours
With so many options available, you could keep coming back to the Lakes and take part in a new route each time. Its beauty is like no other and it has something for everyone, no matter your age or walking ability. So, be sure to use the routes provided above to dip your toe into the vast pool – or lakes if you may – of options available to you in the heart of Cumbria. Safe travels!