Where to Visit
Brockhole is a beautiful lakeside Arts and Crafts house, located next door to Cragwood. It was built at the end of the 19th century as a holiday home for a wealthy silk merchant and his wife, who incidentally was Beatrix Potter’s cousin. The 30 acres of magnificent gardens were created by Thomas Mawson, a British influential garden designer and landscape architect.
Today, Brockhole is a thriving visitor attraction. The grounds are alive with a range of outdoor activities, such as Tree Top Treks and Tree Top Nets, archery, boat hire, mini-golf, clay shooting and a wonderful children’s playground.
Brockhole also has a private jetty, which Windermere Lake Cruises use, so you can hop on a boat and enjoy a cruise.
Hilltop Farm at Near Sawrey is the former home of the legendary and much-loved Beatrix Potter, an exceptionally talented storyteller and illustrator. Full of her favourite things, the cottage has been preserved as is she’s just stepped out for a walk.
In 1905 Beatrix purchased the cottage from royalties earned from ‘The Tale of Peter Rabbit’ and it was here that she wrote 13 of her 23 books, and where many of the famous scenes are set. Today Hill Top is her personal museum.
The World of Beatrix Potter is an exciting family attraction located in the centre of Bowness. The attraction and exhibition includes life size recreations of scenes from the books complete with sights, sounds and smells. There is also a gift shop where you can purchase books and souvenirs.
Blackwell, The Arts and Crafts House
Blackwell is a Grade 1 listed building, designed in the Arts and Crafts style by Baillie Scott. It was built 1898–1900, as a rural holiday home for Sir Edward Holt, a wealthy Manchester brewer and his family.
The house itself is beguiling. We recommend you take time to wander around at leisure and soak up the beautiful craftmanship. You’ll also have the opportunity to learn about life in the late Victorian period, join a talk or meet the Holts through digital augmented reality.
Graythwaite Adventure provide award winning outdoor adventure experiences on the Graythwaite Estate, 5,000 acres of managed woodland, parkland and lake frontage, on the western shore of Lake Windermere.
Guests with Graythwaite Adventure can enjoy 4x4 off-road driving on the off-road course that takes you through some of the most remote areas of the estate on technically challenging ground with majestic views from the summit. Clay pigeon shooting, archery and axe throwing take place at the shooting site, nestled in the heart of the estate. Bushcraft experiences can be enjoyed from the base in the ancient woodland. Watersports are run from a quiet and secluded bay; stand up paddleboarding, sit on top kayaks and canoes; instructed lessons or hire of the equipment. Or you may opt for a boat tour in the 10 seater RIB; a fine way to explore the lake with the option to stop at one of the lake shore waterholes.
It’s definitely worth a visit to Lakeside as you can combine several attractions in one visit. The Lakes Aquarium is located next to the terminus and the Lakeland Motor Museum is a short drive away. If you arrive by boat, Windermere Lake Cruises provide a free shuttle bus to all its ticket holders.
The Lakeside & Haverthwaite railway (L&HR) has just over 3 miles of track and runs from Haverthwaite via Newby Bridge to Lakeside at the southern end of Windermere. Today, passengers can enjoy a pleasant and leisurely journey through lake and river scenes along the Leven valley.
It was formerly a branch line of the Furness Railway (FR) carrying passengers from Lakeside to Ulverston and Barrow, then onto Lancashire. It was closed by British Rail to passengers on 6 September 1965.
In May 1973 it re-opened the remaining 3.5 mile track, from Haverthwaite through to Newby Bridge, terminating at Lakeside.
The Lakeside station is at the Lakeside Pier, so should you wish to leave the car behind, you can arrive by boat from Waterhead or Bowness.
Trains run from April to end of October.
Ulverston and Cumbria Crystal
If you are looking for a day out with a difference, then head over to the lovely market town, Ulverston. The town centre is a labyrinth of cobbled streets, inviting alleyways and coloured old buildings. It was the birthplace of Stan Laurel, one half of the comedy duo ‘Laurel & Hardy’. There is a museum in the town, dedicated to the pair.
On approach to the town, you will find see the Hoad Monument, a 100ft tower on top of Hoad Hill. There are uphill walking trails, which at the top will reward you with spectacular views over Morecambe Bay and the Lake District fells.
Also, on the road in, you will find, Cumbria Crystal. Here you will have a unique opportunity to see the last working full lead crystal glassware factory in England. The artisan company produces crystal for all the British embassies and homes across the globe and their glass-wear graces the tables of many formal dinners and state occasions. They also supplied crystal for Downton Abbey and the Bond films.
Should you be tempted to have a go at glass blowing, you can book a Glass Blowing experience. Experiences range from a 15-minute bauble blowing class (min age 8 years), up to full day tuition.