The northern Lake District
Make the town of Keswick your base for some amazing north Lakes’ adventures
KESWICK IS the main town of the northern Lakes and a great place to explore from.
Mountains, forests, lakes and indoor activities are all easily accessible.
Head west to Whinlatter Forest Park for a bit of mountain biking (three trails) or walking (nine trails) amid superb scenery and wildlife. Alternatively, save your energy and take an off-road Segway tour of the forest, or go one adrenalin step further with a couple of hours in the treetops on a Go Ape experience. The longest zipline measures 89 metres!
If tree swinging doesn’t do it for you, head up to the Honister Pass to check out the Via Ferrata. This is serious stuff, which you’ll realise, as you dangle hundreds of feet above the jagged scree slope below. The exceptional views will almost make up for the terror. Almost.
Take to the lake – Derwentwater – for more tranquil pursuits, aboard a rowing boat, tourist cruiser or maybe a canoe.
The Keswick Launch seems pleasingly refined, with a 50-minute cruise around the lake, costing £11 for adults and £5.70 for kids (5-15). Visit keswick-launch.co.uk or call 01768 772263. You can hop on and off as often as you like, but cruises start from the jetty at CA12 5DJ. Rowing and motorboat hire is also available here.
On a rainy day, head to one of the town’s museums or the Puzzling Place, a fun and intriguing attraction, filled with holograms, brain teasers, illusions, puzzles, curiosities and gadgets. Afterwards, grab a delicious bite to eat in town – we like the freshly-made, stone-baked pizza at the Square Orange Café Bar.
Make Your Stay Better
Throughout the year - Derwent Pencil Museum workshops
Southey Works, Keswick CA12 5NG
T: 01768 773626
Price: Adult £4.95, Child £3.95, Conc £4.40
Enter the museum through a replica graphite mine of 300 years ago, then discover the fascinating history of pencils: from wartime spying to the Queen’s diamond jubilee pencil! Art workshops run throughout the year for those with an artistic bent…or lots of enthusiasm!
15-17 May 2020 - Keswick Mountain Festival
Crow Park, Derwent Water shore
Price: from £45 (weekend ticket including camping)
This festival attracted 20,000 visitors in 2019 with a heady mix of beer, live music, prosecco, lake swimming, gin, expert speakers and a whole range of outdoor activities including a 5km run and cycle racing. 1,000 walkers undertook the Fjallraven Hiking Challenge, too. There’s no more beautiful festival venue on the planet!
Places of Interest
Puzzling Place (World of Illusion
Museum Square, Keswick CA12 5DZ
T: 01768 775102
Go Ape (Whinlatter)
Whinlatter Forest park, Braithwaite CA12 5TW
T: 01983 730435
W: goape.co.uk (select Whinlatter)
Prices: from £26.40 (Treetop adventure) £35 (Segway)
Honister Via Ferrata
Honister Slate Mine, Honister Pass CA12 5XN
T: 01768 777230
W: £40 (Classic) £45 (Xtreme)