10 reasons to visit the Lake District in 2023
With 2022 drawing to a close, it’s time to start thinking about your travel plans for 2023. Why not include a trip to the Lake District? If you get the chance, you really should come to this beautiful corner of England. The Lake District National Park covers over 2,000 square kilometers and is nothing short of stunning, making it one of the UK’s favorite holiday destinations. Moreover, it offers almost everything. From stunning scenery to great visitor attractions, amazing food to outdoor adventure, the Lake District has something for everyone. But if you still need convincing, here are ten reasons to visit the beautiful Lake District. Mess and Mountains in the Lake District Messers and mountains provide a stunning backdrop to the Lake District National Park. They also provide endless opportunities for exploration, whether you’re looking for a challenge or simply fancy a fun family outing. If you really like a challenge, why not start “Wainwright Bagging”? The Wainwright is one of 214 falls identified by Alfred Wainwright, a walker and author of a seven-volume illustrated guide to Lakeland Fells that was published between 1955 and 1966. Some aim to complete this challenge in a year, others in ten years. Some start simply and enjoy sharing when they visit. And yes, some walks are harder on the knees than others; Most of them will leave you in awe of the scenery; All of which will leave you with a sense of accomplishment and memories that will last a lifetime. Lakes (and Tar) in the Lake District It wouldn’t be surprising that one of the greatest attractions to the Lake District are the sixteen glacial lakes and many tars – another opportunity to try something new – open water swimming for example. Open water swimming has grown exponentially over the past few years, and while it’s not a fun idea for everyone, the Lake District is one of the best places in the world to try it. It is also widely said to be a mood booster and stress reducer. If that doesn’t sound like something you’d like to try, how about paddle boarding, fly fishing, or kayaking? Or if you’re looking for something a little quieter, take a walk along the lake’s tranquil shores or take a trip on one of the Lake Windermere cruisers, or the Ullswater steamer. Better yet, hire a boat yourself and explore hidden beaches and coves on lakes like Windermere or Derwentwater. Lake District Food Not long ago, if you asked someone what Lake District food was, they would say Cumberland Sausage, Kendal Mintcake, and Cartmel Sticky Toffee Pudding. The meal outside was a warm stew or a hearty roast in front of a roaring fire after a day on the hills. Everything is still worth tasting. Fast-forward to today, Cumbria has the largest number of Michelin-starred restaurants outside of London, including L’Enclume in Cartmel, the first British restaurant outside of London and Berkshire to be awarded three Michelin stars. In fact, the province now boasts a total of ten Michelin stars across eight restaurants, making it a true foodie destination. And if Michelin-starred dining isn’t for you, there are simpler pleasures to indulge in. From farm shops to farmers markets, tea rooms to rustic cafes, there is so much to explore. And most of them use locally sourced ingredients wherever possible, keeping those delicious treats as low-key as possible. Cozy Village Pubs If you’re visiting the Lake District with family and friends, there aren’t many better ways to unwind than with some delicious food and drinks in cozy surroundings at a cozy Lake District pub. Whether you enjoy the great outdoors and just need somewhere to quench your thirst, or you’re looking for a place to grab some good food, there are plenty of options. In fact, wherever you’re staying in the area, there’s likely to be a pub with a busy kitchen behind it, ready to serve up some local fare in a warm and friendly atmosphere. Important note: If you are reading this article anywhere other than a luxury travel blog, it is likely that this content has been stolen without permission. Please note the web address above and contact A Luxury Travel Blog to report this issue to them. Thank you for your help in combating content theft. Outdoor Adventure With over 2,000 square kilometers to explore, the Lake District is the perfect playground for outdoor enthusiasts. Hiking, swimming, mountain biking, road biking, canoeing, kayaking…the list goes on and on. It can be said that this is the adventure capital of the United Kingdom. For the thrill-seekers, why not head to Honister, where visitors can choose from other activities from snowboarding, cliff camping, and canoeing. Climb the mine, cross the Infinity Bridge or test yourself on the Via Ferrata. This is a day you will not forget. Lake District Culture Not all outdoor adventure is followed by fine dining. The Lake District also has a rich cultural heritage. Not only did the likes of Beatrix Potter, William Wordsworth, John Ruskin and Arthur Ransom name this little corner of England, they also drew inspiration from it for works that continue to this day. Nowadays you can take a trip to the Hill Top, the traditional farmhouse where Beatrix Potter spent a lot of time or wander lonely like a cloud, just like Wordsworth you might also see a crowd, a bunch of golden daffodils (in March/April anyway). Alternatively, visit Dove Cottage or Rydal Mount, the poet’s former homes, and enjoy writing a few lines of poetry yourself. Will you break this privileged environment? Why not recreate the battles in Arthur Ransome’s Swallows and the Amazons with A Day on Coniston Water? Or visit Brantwood, the former home of artist, writer, and social reformer, John Ruskin, located on the lakeside. For fans of theatre, independent cinema, galleries and museums, festivals and exhibitions, visitors to the Lake District are spoiled for choice. Take some time to visit some of the historic homes in the area such as Levens Hall and Sizergh Castle; If live performance is your thing, there’s no place quite like the Lakeside Theater on the shores of Derwentwater in Keswick or the Old Laundry Theater in Bowness; And if you want to immerse yourself in the Arts and Crafts movement, soak up the atmosphere at Blackwell, just outside Bowness, one of the UK’s finest examples of Craftsman architecture. Lake District Museums If you’ve ever been to the Lake District, you’ll know it’s a good idea to have a rainy day alternative up your sleeve. And there are plenty of rainy-day options available, and a chance to step back and delve into the region’s rich history. For example, did you know that there is a museum that celebrates the humble pencil? That’s exactly what the Derwent Pencil Museum in Keswick does – and we can assure you it’s a great day out for the whole family. Head to Backbarrow Village and visit the Lakeland Motor Museum, home to more than 30,000 exhibits ranging from vintage fire trucks to collectible toys. This is a must have for any car enthusiast. You’ll also be able to see the exhibition dedicated to the work of Sir Malcolm Campbell and his son Donald, who between them set twenty-one water speed records. One of the newer museums to open is the Windermere Jetty Museum, located right on the shores of Lake Windermere. Windermere Jetty boasts an amazing range of boats and sailing vessels, including steam launches, speedboats and record-breaking steamboats. There are many great museums in the Lake District and Cumbria, so rest assured, wherever you are in the area, from Whitehaven to Windermere, from Carlisle to Keswick, you will find something that interests you. Wildlife The Lake District is home to a wealth of interesting and rare species, thanks to its diverse habitats such as mountains, wetlands, lakes, forests, and beaches. Which means it doesn’t matter where you live, there’s wildlife at every turn. One of its most beloved species, the endangered red squirrel, can be spotted in parts of the national park, making it one of the few places left in the UK where it can be found in the wild. Other rare species that call the area home include peregrine falcons, arctic char, red deer, and osprey. Owls, otters, kingfish and seals are regularly spotted, and if you’re out in the plateaus you might see small groups of baby ponies, a hardy breed well suited to the Lake District’s sometimes harsh conditions. GREAT FOR ALL SEASONS AND ALL AGES Okay, so we’re putting together a couple here. But the thing is, no matter when you visit, no matter how old you are, there is always something to do. From family outings to fun meals, from museums to kiddie attractions, everyone and everything is catered for. Accessibility The Lake District may seem like a long way to go, but it really is easy to get to. The train journey from London takes less than three hours, while the train journey from Manchester takes just over an hour. For those arriving by car, the M6 motorway has junctions to the South Lakes and North Lakes. There are many reasons to visit the Lake District, some of which we have highlighted above. So what will your travel plans for 2023 include? We hope that a trip to this amazing part of the country is on the list. Rachael Thomas is managing director of Mattson Ground Estate Ltd., which has a number of holiday cottages in the Lake District, including the Birkdale house. Birkdale House is a luxurious Victorian residence in the heart of a privately owned estate in the English Lake District. If you would like to be a guest blogger on our luxury travel blog to raise your profile, please contact us.