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Our Favourite Lakeside Walks

16 Jun 2017

We at the Plough Inn B&B at Lupton are so lucky to be just miles from the beautiful Lake District. As we have lived in this area for so long and have hiked near enough every trail that the area has to offer, we feel we are in the perfect position to tell you about our favourite Lakeside walks. After all that incredible walking at the Plough Inn B & B is the perfect place in the Lake District for you to come and spend the night or fill your belly. We are a stylish historic pub with boutique rooms, relaxed atmosphere and friendly service. To see our beautiful rooms please click here and for our fantastic menu click here.

1. A circuit of Ennerdale Water

For a lakeside walk in the most tranquil of locations, it doesn't get any better than the six and a half-mile walk around Ennerdale Water. This isn't a well-marked route, but it is possible to walk freely around most of the lakeshore. The walk takes in forest roads, tracks, narrow and rocky footpaths (which are frequently very wet), and a steep climb and short exposed scramble over Angler's Crag. Your reward? Superb views across one of the Lake District's least visited lakes!

2. Friar's Crag, Keswick

If you're after a gentle stroll rather than an energetic hike, the views from Friar's Crag make this short walk, high above the lake, a must! Starting at the Theatre by the Lake, Friar's Crag is just a fifteen-minute walk south and has stunning views along Derwentwater to the dramatic 'Jaws of Borrowdale'. You can also extend the walk to take in a wander along neighbouring Strandshag Bay, and make this a circular walk by returning through Cockshot Wood.

3. A circuit of Buttermere

When the rest of the Lake District is crowded during the holidays, the north-western lakes tend to remain calm and quiet. Buttermere, in particular, is a huge favourite with photographers, was recently voted as having one of the best views in Britain, and is family-friendly too! The National Trust recommend you allow around three hours to walk the four and a half-mile circuit of Buttermere, and you can park in Buttermere Village itself. Do bear in mind that there is a 600-metre walk on the road towards the south end of the lake. Children will love the 100-foot-long Hassness Tunnel on the eastern shore, which was created out of the rock so that its 19th century owner could walk around the water unhindered!

4. Aira Force to Glenridding, and Glenridding to Howton, The Ullswater Way

If you're after an energetic day out walking around Ullswater, the Ullswater Way provides 20 miles of waymarked pathways, which can be broken up with trips on board the Ullswater 'Steamers' or the local bus services. It can be walked in either direction from any drop-off point, and Glenridding, Glencoyne, Patterdale and Pooley Bridge are all great starting points if you need to park the car. Glencoyne is especially handy for a lakeside picnic near a car park!

If it's a true lakeside walk you're after, bear in mind that the Ullswater Way directs you away from the lake itself between Aira Force and Pooley Bridge. Popular routes with great views over the lake include Aira Force to Glenridding (3 miles) and Glenridding to Howton (six and a half miles). This walk is one our favourites at the Plough Inn.

5. A circular walk around Loweswater

If you're after a peaceful and secluded walk along a tree-lined shore, Loweswater in the far north-western Lake District is the place to find it. Starting from the National Trust's small Maggie's Bridge car park, the walk is particularly beautiful when heading around the lake clockwise, following the lakeshore through Holme Wood. On reaching Hudson Place, you can either return back along the same path, or complete the four-mile circuit by walking along the road on the opposite side of the lake.

6. Derwentwater Walk

If you'd like something a bit more challenging, check out the Derwentwater Walk, a fabulous 10-mile waymarked walk around Derwentwater. You don't need to complete the whole 10 miles, though - you can have lots of fun hopping on and off the Keswick Launch to explore the areas that appeal to you most, and why not enjoy a leisurely picnic on the beaches at Brandelhow?

7. Pooley Bridge to Gale Bay, Ullswater

Again, if you're looking to take a refreshing short stroll and capture some lakeside snaps, this short route from Pooley Bridge is perfect! Start out at the lakeside car park at Pooley Bridge, and follow the footpath along the lakeside to Gale Bay for half a mile. Then simply return to Pooley Bridge along the same route. There are some fantastic cafes in Pooley Bridge for a spot of afternoon tea.

8. Windermere western shore

Windermere is often considered to be one of the busiest of the Lake District's stretches of water, but the peaceful western shore will help you see this area in a whole new light! The western shore walk is approximately four miles long, beginning at Wray Castle and ending at Claife Viewing Station, where you'll find the charming Courtyard Café. Nearby Ferry House is directly opposite Bowness-on-Windermere, and you can return to the eastern shore on the ferry. Windermere Lake Cruises offer a handy Walker's Ticket, which starts out at Ambleside or Bowness-on-Windermere, drops you off at Wray, and returns you to your starting point later in the day. I did this walk for my birthday last week and there are some lovely pubs on the way to quench your thirst.

9. A circuit of Rydal Water

A complete circuit of Rydal Water is approximately 3.7 miles, and starts out at the White Moss car parks on the A591 between Rydal and Grasmere. Although the route doesn't go along the lake edge itself, there's lots of interest here, including two sets of caves and fabulous views across Rydal Water from Loughrigg Terrace. The walk also joins the Ambleside-Grasmere Coffin Route at Rydal Hall and William Wordsworth's former home, Rydal Mount.

10. Boat ride and walk along Coniston Water

One of the best ways to appreciate the landscape around Coniston is from Coniston Water itself, so you might like to combine a walk along lakeshore footpaths or the country lanes here with a trip on a Coniston Launch. One option is to catch the Coniston Launch at Coniston Jetty to either of the Sunny Bank or Torver jetties. From here you can then take the walk back along the road and lakeside footpath to your starting point.

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