Central Lake District, Cumbria, England

Windermere is the dominating lake in this part of the Lake District. Ambleside always attracts lots of walkers. You can hire a guide and ropes for serious climbing, or just take a gentle stroll round the lake shore. Or try the fellside walk to Stockghyll Force, about a mile to this beautiful waterfall set in the woods

English lake district Lake Windermere lake country uk

The town of Windermere and its suburb of Bowness is the largest town in the Lakes. It is always bustling with people. There are several easily reached vantage points above the town, like Orrest Head which can be reached in a few minutes via a zig-zag path.

The lake itself can be explored either from one of the regular steamers that ply the 10 mile length of the lake, or by hiring a boat and doing it yourself.

rural pubs walking country

Above Windermere climbs the road to the Kirkstone Pass, nearly 1500 feet high, with an inn near the top and dramatic views in all directions.


West of Windermere a small road winds up over Hard Knot Pass, its narrowness and steepness makes it the most difficult road in the Lake District. At the western end are the ruins of the Roman Hard Knott Castle (isn't it amazing where the Romans got to, and where they built forts)

The stony hillsides of Scafell (3210 feet) and great Gable (2949 feet) are favourites with serious walkers and there are usually always people heading for the top of these two peaks. The easy route can normally be attempted by anyone fit enough, the difficult routes are only for rock climbers!

Return to Lake District and North West England Lake District and North West England page