The Lake District Experience Tour

A grand tour through the lakes of Cumbria

Aerial view across Coniston Water

Tour overview

Explore the lush woodlands and still waters of the Lake District National Park

Take a grand tour through England’s unforgettable Lake District taking in all the grandeur that nature has to offer. Set off from the Manchester motorhome collection depot and head north through Preston and Lancaster, skirting the Forest of Bowland, your first stop is in Coniston. From the picturesque Coniston Park site set in the lush woodlands of the Lake District National Park you can admire and explore Coniston Water.

Windermere, the biggest natural lake in England, is a must and is just a short drive away. Be sure to keep an eye out for Bownessie, the monster of the deep that supposedly lurks in the lake. There is adventure in abundance, from rock-climbing to alpaca walking and 4x4 off-road experiences; or swing by Grizedale Forest for a tree top adventure with GoApe.

Continuing on to your next stop, you will arrive at the town of Keswick which is rich with history. There are traditional pubs and inns where you can refresh yourself and find respite. The town plays host to a variety of events throughout the year. On the edge of Keswick is the ancient stone circle of Castlerigg. There are hiking opportunities in the Helvellyn Mountains, as well as paragliding and adventures in the mines to satisfy your appetite for adventure and the local lakes of Derwent Water, Bassenthwaite Water Buttermere and Crummock Water are all close by.

From here wind your way back down to Kendal. Shops and restaurants are aplenty in the intriguing and arty market town and there are more daring activities to sink your teeth into such as zip lining, kayaking, archery and climbing. The World of Beatrix Potter is on the edge of the nearby lake and features immersive interactive exhibits. For those in the mood to learn some new skills try your hand at woodwork, yoga and bushcraft. The Kendall Caravan and Motorhome Club Site is great for exploring the area, and is situated on the site of a 19th century gunpowder mill. Your trip through the Lake District will leave you invigorated, enraptured and entranced with magical memories to take away and keep forever.

 

Distance

Total distance: 277 miles

Driving Time

Total driving time: 5 hours, 50 minutes

Length

Suggested length of tour: 11 days

Space
Space
Space

Explore the route map


Stop 1. Coniston

Recommended site: Coniston Park Coppice Caravan and Motorhome Club Site

Open: All year

Address: Park Gate, Coniston LA21 8LA

Driving Time

Total driving time: 2 hours

Overview

Located in a breath-taking woodland setting in the Lake District National Park, Coniston Park Coppice is the perfect central point for exploring the local lakes and fells. If you’re in no hurry then the delightful medieval Lancaster Castle makes for a fantastic stop en route, steeped in nearly 1,000 years of history.

You can exit the site at the foot of the hill to discover picturesque views of Coniston Water. Grab your hiking boots for walks around the water or pop on your wet suit to take a dip. Boats can be hired at the local Coniston Pier. If you want to kick back why not book a ticket on the Steam Yacht Gondola.

Don’t forget to greet the Old Man of Coniston and his friendly flock of sheep whilst you’re here. The Old Man is the highest point in the Furness Fells. Brandwood house is nearby, a museum and vibrant art centre as is the Ruskin Museum. Both a memorial to the art critic Ruskin and a local museum covering the history of the Lakes and Coniston, here you will see the Bluebird k7, the boat of British speed record breaker Donald Campbell.

The enchanting Lake Windermere is a must visit whilst in the area. It is the largest natural lake in England and plays host to a variety of waterborne activities with steam boat trips, ferries and sailing all being popular with tourists. The lake boasts its own cryptic monster to rival its cousin in Loch Ness, affectionately named ‘Bownessie’ after the only town on the banks of Windermere, Bowness. But with so much to see and do, don’t worry if you don’t get the opportunity to head over to the magnificent Lake Windermere as the last leg of your tour also takes you close by.

Visitor view:

"Absolutely splendid site. Location, facilities, cleanliness and staff are all, without exception, of the highest quality. Unmissable if you are in the South Lakes."

MBu

Stop 1 Highlights

The Steam yacht Gondola

A view from atop The Old Man of Coniston

The pier at Lake Windermere

Boats on Coniston Water

Things to do when you're here

Food & Drink

Food & drink

Bluebird Café
Lake Road, Coniston, LA21 8AN

www.thebluebirdcafe.co.uk
01539 441649

Culture

Culture

Ruskin’s former home Brantwood
East of Lake, Coniston LA218AD

www.brantwood.org.uk
01539 441396

Outdoor fun

Outdoor fun

Coniston Boating Centre
Lake Road, Coniston, LA21 8EW

www.conistonboatingcentre.co.uk
01539 441366

For the family

For the family

Go Ape
Grizedale, Hawkshead, LA22 0QJ

www.goape.co.uk
0333 220 4898

Stop 2. Keswick

Recommended site: Borrowdale Caravan and Motorhome Club Site

Open: March to November

Address: Manesty, Keswick, Cumbria, CA12 5UG

Driving Time

Total driving time: 1 hour, 5 minutes

Overview

The spellbinding town of Keswick has a rich and abundant history. The ancient Castlerigg stone circle is a fascinating site and lies just outside of the town boundary. Keswick holds a variety of public events, such as a film festival, beer festival and Derwent Water Regatta.

There are several country pubs and inns in the town, with the oldest dating to the 16th century. The Borrowdale Club Site is just 5 miles outside Keswick and lies within National Trust woodland.  On your way here grab your hiking boots to spend some time at the spectacular Helvellyn Mountain. Its location is ideal for walking as the beautiful and varied countryside has forested areas, nature trails and farmland walks.

There are plenty of local lakes to visit too, including Derwent Water, Bassenthwaite Water Buttermere and Crummock Water. Adventure is never far off in the Lake District with Air Ventures Paragliding School and Honister Mine Adventures both being close to the site.

Visitor view:

"Great place for walking/biking direct from the site. Easy walk to good dining and to landing for launch to Keswick. Nearby Grange has two excellent cafes."

jimgb

Stop 2 Highlights

Castlerigg stone circle

Derwent Water

Helvellyn Mountain

Honister Slate Mines

Things to do when you're here

Food & Drink

Food & drink

Leathes Head Country House Hotel
Borrowdale Valley, Keswick CA12 5UY

www.leatheshead.co.uk
01768 777247

Culture

Culture

Castlerigg Stone Circle
Castle Ln, Underskiddaw, Keswick CA12 4RN

www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/castlerigg-stone-circle
0370 333 1181

Outdoor fun

Outdoor fun

Honister Mine Adventures
Honister Pass, Borrowdale, CA12 5XN
017687 77230 (25 miles)

www.honister.com
017687 77230

For the family

For the family

Alpaca Walking
The Lakes Distillery, Setmurthy,
CA13 9SJ. 

www.alpacalyeverafter.co.uk
017687 78328

Stop 3. Kendal

Recommended site: Kendal Caravan and Motorhome Club Site

Open: March to November

Address: Sedgwick, Kendal, Cumbria, LA8 0JZ

Driving Time

Total driving time: 1 hour, 10 minutes

Overview

With so much to see and do in and around Kendal, it is no ordinary market town. Steeped in art, intriguing history and a bustling shopping centre with several restaurants; this stop may be last but it is by no means least.

If you didn't get to stop at Windermere on the first leg of your journey then you'll have a second chance to visit with Windermere being just a 20 minute drive away. Kendal is the perfect hub for exploring the area and has some fascinating history of its own being on the site of a 19th century gunpowder mill. Brockhole is a fantastic stop on route that has something for all the family, with a range of activities from mini-golf and zip lines through to kayaking and archery.  Not just for little ones, The World of Beatrix Potter just on the edge of Windermere tells the story of Potter and her writing through interactive exhibits and detailing her importance to Lakeland conservation.

The ruins of Kendal Castle are also well worth exploring and from here you get a stunning view over the town.  Learn some new skills at Woodmatters who offer a range of lessons in woodwork, yoga and bushcraft skills; or for all weather climbing head over to the award winning Kendall Wall at the Lakeland Climbing Centre. After your adventures in and around the Lake District has come to an end the Manchester depot is just 1 hour 30 minute's drive away.

Visitor view:

"We stayed on this site for a week in September it is set in woodlands and probably one of the best sites we have stayed at . The wardens are fantastic and friendly the toilets are spotless and the walks are breathtaking."

jamcarr

Stop 3 Highlights

Striking Kendal landscape

Kendal Wall - indoor and outdoor climbing for all ages

Explore the ruins of Kendal Castle

Craft your own utensils with Wood Matters

Things to do when you're here

Food & Drink

Food & drink

Hawkshead Brewery
Staveley, Kendal LA8 9LR

www.hawksheadbrewery.co.uk
01539 822644

Culture

Culture

Kendal Castle Castle Hill
Kendal LA9 7BL

www.visitcumbria.com/sl/kendal-castle

Outdoor fun

Outdoor fun

Woodmatters
13 Old Lound, Kendal Cumbria LA9 7EH

www.woodmatters.org.uk

For the family

For the family

Lakeland Climbing Centre
Lake District Business Park, Mint Bridge Rd, Kendal LA9 6NH

www.kendalwall.co.uk
01539 721766