An escape to the Lake District – 2

The Lake District is such an interesting part of England that it made sense to divide my review into two posts. From my first impressions on the Windermere Lake, I can say that what we saw there was far beyond our expectations in terms of savage beauty of the landscape, kindness of people and the unspoilt appeal of nature. Let’s discover now some other Lakes as essentials as Windermere…

Rydal Water and “the Lakes Poets”

When you go north of Ambleside, you reach a small village called Rydal near Rydal Water, one of the smallest Lakes in the area. Rydal is very famous thanks to its Wordsworth’s connections. This romantic poet came to the Lake District and established himself here in the late 18th century. Wordsworth, with his pairs Coleridge and Southey, were called “the Lakes Poets”. You can visit the historic home and gardens of Wordworth and enjoy a tea there…Let’s be romantic for a day!

Grasmere, its Lake and famous Gingerbread

If you follow the main road you’ll easily find Grasmere Lake, which we first saw under heavy showers… When we came back another day, the Lake was awesome, with such reflections of the sun and nature on the water I was captivated by it.
Grasmere is also well-known because of the “Grasmere Gingerbread” that Sarah Nelson invented there in 1854. This “unique, spicy-sweet cross between a biscuit and cake” is sold all over the world. But don’t expect a big shop with a nice and romantic tea room… There’s hardly enough place for 2 customers at the same time! But the history of this poor woman inventing a successful recipe, and whose culinary reputation has been widespread all over the world, is quite touching…
We had also a wonderful time at The Wordworth Hotel & Spa, drinking a tea when it was raining outside. Great staff, cosy armchairs, lovely veranda, nice bar…A good place to recommend.

Tarn Hows Lake

A wonderful walk to make is in Tarn Hows. This Lake is west of Windermere and this is a great trail for the whole family, with waterfalls and a beautiful forest surrounding the lake.

The Grizedale Forest

As art lovers and good walkers, we were happy to follow a family trail of 5 miles in the Grizedale Forest. We discovered some pieces of natural art and enjoyed walking in the forest.
And we had the pleasure to see many bluebells all along the route…The delicacy of this flower always surprises me.
On our way back to Ambleside, we popped into the Drunken Duck Inn for lunch (at 3pm), which is the best place to eat in the Lake District! The dishes were delicious, with worldwide influences (the peanut curry and the fish chowder with poached egg were fantastic), the staff was very attentive, the place comfortable… And some tables were even set up outside to enjoy the view. I highly recommend it!

Derwentwater – The Castlerigg Circle & The Bowder Stone

Near Keswick, we came to see the Castlerigg Stone Circle. This is an extraordinary place with panoramic views and the mountains as a backdrop.
I was very surprised to know that there are more than 300 stone circles in Britain. But this place is considered to have been constructed about 3000 bc, and it is potentially one of the earliest in the country, which makes it very popular in the Lakes. We had quite a long stay there, taking time to appreciate this stunning place.
After this discovery we headed for the Troutbeck Inn to have lunch and had a great time there. The place was quiet and the food delicious.
Then we had a walk at the Bowder stone, which is thought to be originated from a rock fall (more likely than being a glacial erratic, according to some touristic guides).
It is one of the most famous features in the area, offering a nice view from the top. The stone is said to weigh 2000 tons and be 30 feet high. The walk is quite nice and you quickly reach the stone…

Our last stop was at the Flock Inn, situated opposite to the Yew Farmhouse.
This is a well-known stop for cyclists, who come here to rest with a tea or an ice-cream and enjoy the view. Hopefully it was sunny that day, as there is no room inside.

But the garden outside is really beautiful and you can see the many sheeps in their quiet environment.

Skies at the Lake District

I can’t help but show you a picture of the sky in the Lakes… How beautiful it is! And changing all the time, according to the wind and sun. An endless source of inspiration!

When our trip came to an end, we wished we could stay more to visit more places and walk around other lakes … But London was calling us!

If you have some great memories of the Lake District, please do share them, it would make a great opportunity to come back there!

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