The Lake District

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The beauty of the Lake District is unmatched by anywhere else in the country. It is a natural beauty untainted by the hand of man. It has been a cradle for creative thought and a place of inspiration to writers, artists and poets alike for centuries, with things not set to change. It is through some of the works published by the likes of William Wordsworth and the other ‘Lake Poets’ that the region saw its popularity boom in the nineteenth century, and remains as popular as ever today. The whole of the region is a National Park, the largest in England measuring around 40 miles by 30 miles in area. Due to the size of the area that the park covers it is far more than just a visitor attraction like many other National Parks are. However the area is protected and buildings and industry regulated so as to maintain the beauty of the area.

Photo by Marilyn Peddle
Photo by Marilyn Peddle

The Lakes

The name of the area is derived or course from the number of bodies of water that the region contains. The lakes here are the result of glacial action which took place many thousands of years ago. As the vast ice sheets began to melt the lakes were formed in the valleys and troughs that had been carved by the glacier, without the weight of the ice to hold the land down the ground rose and the water became trapped in what are now some of the country’s most well known lakes. Due to the size of the Lake District there is more than just one visitor centre, here you will find three, located in the three largest towns within the boundaries of the park at Windermere, Keswick and Ambleside. Each offers free maps to visitors to help you plan your visit to this wonderful part of the world.

Things to See and Do

Sights and attractions can vary with the seasons here, and the weather too may have a bearing on what can be enjoyed. Pay a visit to the town of Ambleside, situated on the northern shore of Lake Windermere, this is home to the University of Cumbria and you will find that the place has quite a student feel to it. Rydal and the house that belonged to poet William Wordsworth is close by too. Keswick is the region’s market town with very ancient connections. Pay a visit to the Castlerigg Stone Circle and enjoy the tranquillity that envelopes you as you enter this beautiful prehistoric site. Or do something educational and have a trip to the pencil museum.

The town of Windermere is located on the eastern side of the lake of the same name, the biggest lake in England. Here you will find museums and galleries, but be sure to take one of the many boat trips out onto the lake to see the region from a different perspective. Muncaster Castle is also worth a visit too – the Great Hall dates back as far as the fourteenth century and the castle has been in the Pennington family for more than eight hundred years.

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