The Lake District continues to charm visitors with its breathtaking landscapes, picturesque pubs and award-winning attractions. Here is our pick of the Lakes’ hidden gems.
Armathwaite Hall (4-star), Keswick
A hotel set in the secluded splendour of 400 acres of deer park bordered by Bassenthwaite Lake.
Beatrix Potter Gallery (National Trust), Hawkshead
This is home to a fascinating exhibition on the life of the beloved children’s author, featuring original storybook illustrations.
Dove Cottage and the Wordsworth Museum and Art Gallery, Grasmere
The idyllic home that inspired Wordsworth’s greatest poetry, and the museum whose collection includes over 90 per cent of his surviving manuscripts.
England’s highest pass, with wonderful views – the Ten Lakes Spectacular with Mountain Goat Tours also takes in Castlerigg Stone Circle, a lake cruise, the Borrowdale Valley and Newlands Valley.
Lindeth Howe Country House Hotel (3-star), Windermere
This was where Beatrix Potter illustrated The Tale of Timmy Tiptoes in 1911, and later her mother’s home – the hotel boasts great views over Lake Windermere and an excellent restaurant.
Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway, Ravenglass
Train rides through seven miles of glorious scenery, from the Lake District National Park’s only coastal village to the beautiful Eskdale Valley. www.ravenglass-railway.co.uk
Swinside Lodge Hotel, Keswick
Georgian country house hotel surrounded by fells with Derwent Water nearby. There are seven fantastic rooms and you can dine in the two AA rosette restaurant.
With National Trust-owned tearooms, this little hamlet sits high above the Thirlmere and Borrowdale valleys and has stunning views from the fells above. www.visitcumbria.com/kes/watendlath
Windermere Lake Cruises
Cruise around the islands or over to Ambleside, or walk along the lake and return by ferry.
For more on the Lake District see the BRITAIN 2014 Guide, on sale in the UK on 1 May and in the US on 6 June.