Rolling meadows, gorgeous sceneries, charming villages, and people with a passion for the good things in life, the Lake District in the UK is an exceptional region with stunning landscapes that promises memorable encounters. While admiring the beauty of the Lake District is a given for anyone touring through this still mostly untouched part of the world, there are ample opportunities to immerse in the local culture here, through activities that are fun, thrilling, and educational for all ages.
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Exciting Things to Do in England’s Lake District
Visit the Derwent Pencil Museum
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A must for all stationery addicts, the Derwent Pencil Museum in Keswick, Cumbria, is a lovely excursion for the entire family that occupies the better half of a day. Besides information on graphite mining in the region, the museum has quizzes and an art area to keep visitors busy. Although the museum is quite small, it's loaded with a lot of historical facts about pencils, including spy ones from WWII.
The staff are extremely knowledgeable and helpful, often going out of their way to explain the intricacies of how pencils were first made in this region. They are also an excellent source to better understand which pencils might suit your particular artistic inclinations. The museum regularly holds art classes and also has a small cafe, ideal for a quick bite or a hot cup of English tea.
Stop by Dove Cottage
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There's no denying Lake District's connection with literature, considering it has been a home for several great writers and poets over centuries. Dove Cottage in Grasmere is where William Wordsworth spent eight years living with his sister. It was during these years that Wordsworth wrote some of his most famous works. Now considered a "building of particular interest," Dove Cottage has been preserved in much the same manner as when the Wordsworth family lived here.
Visitors at Dove Cottage can walk inside the building and take a guided tour that presents a rather intriguing look at how life was back in the early 1800s. There's also the possibility to take a stroll in the garden bursting with colorful flora, situated behind the cottage. A new addition to the area is the soon to be opened William Wordsworth Museum that will delve deeper into the poet's life with more interactive projects, a viewing point, and a separate area for kids to play and dress up in vintage-styled clothing.
Go Gorge Scrambling
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While adventure activities like canoeing and rock climbing are available in many places around the globe, one of the more challenging and unique options in the Lake District is gorge scrambling. An outing that involves going up a mountain river, climbing waterfalls, conquering wet rocks, and holding on to trees, it's a thrill of a lifetime. Best done as a group excursion, that kids of a certain age can also take part in, guides often know secret locations of plunge pools and natural slides that make scrambling all the more thrilling.
The tours offered by several on-location organizers are professionally handled with instructors and safety equipment. They also only operate when the water level is waist high and thus not dangerous. Some of the best places to take part in ghyll scrambling are Stoneycroft Ghyll in Keswick, Wren Ghyll close to Kendall, and Esk Gorge.
Enjoy the Lake Activities
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There's no point being in the Lake District of England and not partaking in the multitude of lakeside and on-lake activities. Lake Windermere is the largest in the region and a hotbed of fun events for the entire family. Brockhole on Windermere is particularly famous with tourists and locals who visit throughout the year, to hire boats, go kayaking, enjoy a bike hike, or take part in happenings such as archery, treetop trek, and mini-golf.
Some of the other water activities available at Windermere include cruises, motorboat rides, sailing, and paddle-boating. With areas around the lake ideal for picnics, a day out by the water on a sunny afternoon, with your loved ones, is the most enjoyable experience you'll have when visiting the Lake District.
Have a drink at a Distillery or Brewery
For a more adult and culinary centered extravaganza, don't forget to visit one of several distilleries and breweries dotted around the Lake District. The most popular distillery in the region is Lakes Distillery, known for its "The One" blended whiskey. Tourists can take a tour to learn about whiskey production, after which they can spend time on their grounds, or eat delicious food at their in-house cafe.
There are also a lot many independent, smaller breweries worth a visit. Keswick Brewing Company is one that is slowly gaining fame in the region with its spectacular beers. Once again, tourists can enjoy a lovely brew while taking a tour or pick some bottles up at their shop for later. Barngates and Hawkshead in Cumbria are two more breweries that manufacture delicious ales and beers, available only in and around the Lake District.
Look Up at the Night Sky in Wasdale
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Having the advantage of being up north, the Lake District is particularly known for having some of the darkest skies in the world. While there are several places across the Lake District that promise you spectacular stargazing and stunning astrophotography opportunities, Wasdale seems to have most on offer. Its proximity to Scarfell Pike, England's highest mountain, and Wast Water, the countries deepest lake, is unmatched. As a result, you can spend days here hiking along breath-taking trails that go up the mountains and enjoy laidback nights under a shimmering blanket of stars.
Ennerdale, for those searching solitude, and Grizedale Forest for nature enthusiasts, are two more places that promise excellent night-time stargazing options. The beauty of the night sky is a truly magical sight, one that stays in mind forever.
The perfect way to explore the Lake District is to drive around it. This way, you are privy to discovering some of the smaller, quaint villages that are off the typical tourist route. Moreover, the charm of being one with nature, no plan in mind, driving through winding roads that take you to remarkable remote spots, is only the beginning of what will eventually be a holiday to remember.