Walking Routes in Cumbria

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The Lake District

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 Cumbria Walks
Route NamePicDistanceDescription
Acorn Bank4 miles (6 km)This walk takes you through the National Trust owned Acorn Bank Gardens and into the surrounding countryside to the village of Culgaith in the Eden District of Cumbria.
Acorn Bank has stunning gardens with orchards carpeted with wildflowers and surrounded by herbaceous borders. You can also visit the restored 19th century watermill and enjoy a stroll along Crowdundle Beck.
Aira Force3 miles (5 km)This walk visits the beautiful Aira Force waterfall next to Ullswater Lake in the Lake District National Park. You start off in the car park by the lake and then head through ancient woodland to the spectacular 65ft high waterfall. You can cross a bridge over the falls for fantastic views. You then head through Gowbarrow Park before reaching the lakeside where you can follow a waterside path back to the start point.
Allerdale Ramble31 miles (50 km)Explore the stunning scenery of the Lake District on this wonderful trail.
The trail begins at Seathwaite at the foot of the stunning Great Gable mountain. The route then heads through Borrowdale to Keswick, climbing Castle Crag and passing Catbells on the way. You then pass the stunning Derwent Water and Bassenthwaite Lake on your way to Cockermouth. The trail then heads to the coast at Maryport where the final stretch takes you along the lovely Cumbrian Coastline to Silloth.
Arnside Knott2 miles (2.5 km)This small hill in Arnside is a popular beauty spot and internationally important wildlife area. The hill is a mixture of limestone grassland, woodland, wet meadow, scree and scrub. It is renowned for its butterflies and flowers. From the high point there are fabulous views over Silverdale and the coastal estuary towards Grange over Sands, Morecambe Bay and the Lake District fells.
This circular walk starts at the car park by the hill and takes you to the viewpoint and through the woodland on public footpaths.
You can continue your walk by picking up the Cumbria Coastal Way which starts at the nearby Milnthorpe Sands. Or you could visit the nearby Leighton Moss Nature Reserve. Also nearby is Warton Crag nature reserve with its rare butterflies and plants.
Askham Hall6 miles (9 km)This walk takes you through Askham Hall and along the River Lowther in the northern area of the Lake District. You will also visit the Grade II listed Askham Hall gardens with colourful terraces, a 230ft long double herbaceous border, formal lawns, kitchen gardens, woodland, meadows and ponds. The hall includes animal trails where you can see shorthorn cattle, rare breed pigs, boer goats, ducks and chickens.
Please note that the gardens and cafe are currently open to the public from Fridays to Sundays 11am to 4pm.
If you would like to continue your walk you could head to the adjacent Lowther Castle where you will find 130 acres of gardens and castle terraces.
Bassenthwaite Lake15 miles (24 km)This walk takes you to the lovely Bassenthwaite Lake from Keswick in the Lake District. It makes use of the Allerdale Ramble so the path is generally well defined and way-marked. You start off in the popular town of Keswick and soon pick up the River Derwent where you can enjoy a long riverside section to Thornthwaite Forest. You then follow peaceful woodland trails through the forest before another waterside section along Bassenthwaite Lake. You return through the forest and then on to Applethwaire and Milbeck before returning to Keswick. There are fabulous views of Skiddaw to enjoy all along the walk.
Blea Tarn2 miles (3 km)This is a nice easy walk around the lovely Blea Tarn near Eltwerwater in the Lake District National Park. There are terrific views of Lingmoor and Pike of Blisco and the other surrounding Langdale fells. The tarn is very picturesque and popular with photographers. Langdale Pikes make a splendid backdrop, while the shores are lined with beautiful alpine flowers in the spring and summer.  This route starts at the National Trust car park near the tarn and follows well surfaced paths around the water and through peaceful woodland before a short, steady climb to the high point of the route giving great views of the Little Langdale Valley and the Coniston Fells.
Blencathra7 miles (11.5 km)This is a fantastic climb to the summit of one of the Lake District's most well known and popular mountains. The walk begins at the parking lot in the pretty village of Threlkeld. You then climb Blencathra (or Saddleback) via Scales Fell, Scales Tarn and Sharp Edge. Sharp Edge is a challenging scramble along a narrow crest. Alfred Wainright describes it thus: 'The crest itself is sharp enough for shaving (the former name was razor edge) and can be traversed only a cheval at some risk of damage to tender parts.'
From the summit there are fabulous views of the mountains of Galloway, the Southern Uplands, the Border hills, the Cheviots, the Pennines and North Wales. Derwent Water and Thirlmere lakes are also visible.
The walk descends to Knowe Crags and Blease Farm before returning to Threlkeld.
Bowfell6 miles (10 km)Climb one of the most popular fells in the Lake District on this challenging walk. Bowfell is is in Alfred Wainwright's 'best half dozen' Lake District fells. The views from the summit are magnificent with every main fell group in the Lake District visible including the Helvellyn range, the Langdale Pikes across Langdale and Scafell Pike towering above Eskdale.
If you'd like to continue your climbing you could head to the Langdale Pikes - the start point for this route is close by.
Brothers Water2 miles (3.5 km)This small lake next to Hartsop village is perfect for a peaceful walk away from the Lake District's hot spots. Brothers Water lies at the northern end of Kirkstone Pass, giving fabulous views on the descent towards Patterdale. You start off at the car park at the northern end of the lake and follow the footpath around the lake which includes a gentle climb to Hartsop Hall.
Buttermere4 miles (7 km)This is a walk around the beautiful Buttermere lake in the Lake District National Park. The lake has a delightful walking path running along most of the shoreline making for an idyllic waterside stroll.
You start off in the pretty village of Buttermere which takes its name from the lake. You then pick up the shoreline trail passing through a rock tunnel beneath Hassness on the way round. The fells of Fleetwith Pike and Haystacks make a tremendous backdrop to the walk.
If you would like to continue your walk then you could head to Crummock Water which is right next to Buttermere. Loweswater is also not far and is generally a more peaceful option as there are usually fewer visitors to this area.
Caldbeck to Carlisle15 miles (24 km)This is the fifth and final leg of the Cumbria Way taking you from Caldbeck to the finish point in Carlisle.
This section descends to Carlisle following the River Caldew for most of the route. You will pass through the villages of Sebergham, Buchaban and Dalston walking on a mixture of public footpaths and bridleways.
Castle Crag3 miles (5 km)Castle Crag is the smallest hill included in Alfred Wainwright's Pictorial Guide to the Lakeland Fells. It stands at 290 m (950 ft) in the beautiful Borrowdale area of the Lake District.
This walk begins at the pretty village of Grange and makes use of the Cumbria Way and the Allerdale Ramble to take you along the River Derwent before ascending Castle Crag.  At the summit you will find a circular cairn of slate and a memorial to Borrowdale men killed in World War I. The views of Derwent Water and Borrowdale are truly wonderful.
The climb can also be started from nearby Rosthwaite.
If you wanted to continue your walk you could follow the Cumbria Way north to the beautiful Derwent Water and enjoy a lakeside stroll. Another popular fell is the nearby Catbells which gives faboulous views across Derwent Water.
Catbells4 miles (6 km)Catbells is one of the most popular climbs in the Lake District. At 451 metres (1,480 ft) it is not particularly high so attracts walkers of all abilities. Alfred Wainwright said of Catbells: 'It is one of the great favourites, a family fell where grandmothers and infants can climb the heights together, a place beloved. Its popularity is well deserved, its shapely topknott attracts the eye offering a steep but obviously simple scramble.' The fell is located on the western side of Derwent Water near to the popular town of Keswick.
The walk starts at the car park at Hawes End and climbs to Skelgil Bank and on to the summit on a good but steep path with minimal scrambling. From the summit there are fabulous views of Derwentwater, Bassenthwaite Lake, the Newlands Valley, Skiddaw and Keswick to the north, while the view south has a fine vista of Borrowdale. You descend towards Manesty where you pick up the Allerdale Ramble waymarked walking trail which will take you back to the finish point at the car park.
If you enjoy this climb you could try other popular nearby fells including Castle Crag and Latrigg. As stated the Allerdale Ramble walking trail runs past Catbells so this another option if you'd like to continue your walk. You could potentially follow it all the way to Keswick or head south into Borrowdale.
Cautley Spout2 miles (4 km)Cautley Spout is England's highest (cascade) waterfall above ground. It's located near Sedburgh in the Yorkshire Dales National Park. This walk follows a footpath running alongside the waterfall from Low Haygarth to the top of the spout. It is a steep climb but the footpath is essentially a series of steps so it is quite an easy path to the follow. This is likely to be a very peaceful walk as the area does not attract too many visitors. Ideal if you are looking for some solitude in beautiful surroundings. You could continue your walk by climbing further over the beautiful Howgill Fells where there are magnificent views of the Lake District.
Cistercian Way17 miles (28 km)Visit historical religous sites on this fascinating walk through the South Lakeland area of Cumbria
The path starts at the train station at Grange Over Sands and takes you to Cark via Eggersjack Wood and Cartmel with its interesting priory founded in 1190. At Cark you can catch the train over Cartmel sands to Ulverston. It is possible to walk this section over the sands but this is not advised unless you are with an expert guide.
At Ulverston the path heads south to Urswick, leading you around the lovely Urswick Tarn. You continue on through Dalton-in-Furness, passing the delightful Abbotswood Nature Reserve before arriving at Furness Abbey. This ruined former Cistercian monastery dates back to 1123 and is one of the major highlights on the path.
The final section takes you south to the coast where you finish on Roa Island at the southernmost point of the Furness Peninsula.
Coffin Route-Ambleside to Grasmere4 miles (6 km)Follow the Coffin Route from Ambleside to Grasmere on this lovely walk in the Lake District. The walk is fairly easy with only a short climb and a well defined, signposted route. The path is so called because it was used to convey coffins on their final journey to St Oswalds Church in Grasmere.
You start off in Ambleside and follow the A591 to Scandale Bridge where you leave the road and head through Rydal Park to Rydal Hall. This 19th century mansion has formal gardens and the pretty Rydal Falls where you can enter 'The Grot' - an 18th century summerhouse designed for viewing the waterfalls. Rydal Hall also has a very good tea shop so it's a good place to stop for refreshments on the route. Just up the hill to the right you will find Rydal Mount -  the home of the poet William Wordsworth from 1813 to his death in 1850.
The route continues west passing along the lower part of Nab Scar with lovely views of Rydal Water. You soon come to Dove Cottage where Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy lived from December 1799 to May 1808. William wrote much of the poetry for which he is remembered today, including 'I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud' at Dove Cottage. It's now open to the public - you can enjoy a guided tour of the house and visit the adjacent musueum which has fantastic exhibitions about Wordsworth's work and life.
The final section of the walk takes you past Grasmere lake and into Grasmere village where you can see the grave of Wordsworth in the peaceful graveyard of St Oswalds church.
Coniston to Langdale11 miles (17 km)This is the second leg of the Cumbria Way taking you from Coniston to Langdale.
The walk starts in the village of Coniston and takes you to the picturesque Tarn Hows, the village of Elterwater and then onto Langdale.
There's much to enjoy on this leg including Elterwater Lake, Skelwith Force Waterfalls and fabulous views of Langdale Pikes.
Coniston Water4 miles (6 km)This easy cycling and walking trail runs along the western shoreline of the beautiful Coniston Water in the Lake District National Park. The route starts at the car park at Lake Road and runs through Coniston Hall Park to Torver Common Wood. It's perfect for beginners and families looking for a safe, waterside ride. Bikes can be hired from the Coniston Boating Centre.
If you'd like to continue your outing you could head to the nearby Grizedale Forest where you will find miles of way-marked cycling and walking trails. You could also follow the Cumbria Way a couple of miles to the north east where you will find the beautiful Tarn Hows.
Crinkle Crags6 miles (10 km)Crinkle Crags stands at a height of 859 m (2,818 ft). Alfred Wainwright described it thus: 'Much too good to be missed ... this is a climb deserving of high priority'.
The walk starts at the car park near the Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel in Great Langdale and heads to Stool End Farm on country lanes. You ascend towards Bowfell passing The Band, White Stones and Earing Crag. You then turn south passing the Three Tarns before you reach Crinkle Crags summit at 859 m (2,818 ft). There are fabulous views of Great Langdale, Eskdale, Dunnerdale, and the estuaries of the rivers Duddon and Esk as they enter the Irish Sea. There is also a very good view of Scafell Pike, which is the parent peak of Crinkle Crags. 
You then descend towards Great Knott and Oxendale with views of Oxendale Beck. Shortly after you rejoin the path to the car park and the finish point.
Crummock Water9 miles (14 km)Enjoy a walk around Crummock Water in the Lake District National Park. The route starts at the pretty village of Butteremere and follows the lakeside walking trail along the western shore of the lake. You then return through Mellbreak fell with fabulous views of the lake below.
If you would like to continue your walk you could head to the nearby Buttermere Lake and enjoy the lakeside path there. Loweswater is also not far and is usually a more peaceful option as there are usually fewer visitors to this area.
Cumbria Coastal Way182 miles (293 km)Explore the wonderful coastline of Cumbria on this splendid long distance path. The walk begins at Silverdale and runs through a series of fascinating Cumbrian coastal towns and villages, before finishing near Gretna on the border with Scotland. Spectacular cliff tops, peaceful estuaries, beaches, mountains, rivers and canals are all features on this popular route.
  • Silverdale, Lancashire
  • Arnside
  • Grange-over-Sands
  • Greenodd
  • Ulverston
  • Barrow-in-Furness
  • Askam-in-Furness
  • Kirkby-in-Furness
  • Broughton-in-Furness
  • Millom and the lovely Hodbarrow Lakes Nature Reserve
  • Ravenglass
  • Seascale
  • St. Bees
  • St. Bees Head
  • Whitehaven
  • Workington
  • Maryport
  • Allonby
  • Silloth
  • Abbeytown
  • Burgh by Sands
  • Carlisle
Walk highlights include Morecambe Bay, the Solway Firth, the Lake District mountains, the red sandstone cliffs of St. Bees Head, a waterside section along the River Eden into Carlisle and views of Hadrian's Wall.
The video below shows the lovely views from Grange-Over-Sands and Arnside. From here you can see the Lake District Mountains and Morecambe Bay in the distance.
The walk has been designed for all abilities with very few strenuous climbs. It is also very accessible with train stations and bus routes dotted along the route. The walk is well waymarked with a dark green and yellow disc.
Cumbria Way70 miles (112 km)Travel through the beautiful Lake District National Park on this stunning walk. The path runs from Ulverston to Carlisle, passing dramatic mountainous scenery, beautiful lakes and a series of delightful Cumbrian towns and villages.
We have split this trail into five stages of around 15 miles each in length.
Stage 1: Ulverston to Coniston
Stage 2: Coniston to Langdale
Stage 3: Langdale to Keswick
Stage 4: Keswick to Caldbeck
Stage 5: Caldbeck to Carlisle
Dalemain Estate2 miles (4 km)Explore 5 acres of celebrated gardens and acres of historic parkland in the estate of this splendid Georgian house. Dalemain is located in the Lake District National Park very close to the beautiful Ullswater Lake and Pooley Bridge. The park includes a herd of red deer, lovely gardens and the River Eamont.
Dales Way78 miles (126 km)This wonderful walk takes you through the fabulous Yorkshire Dales and on into Cumbria and the spectacular Lake District.
There are several wonderful waterside stretches to enjoy starting with the River Wharfe at Ilkley before runs along the Rivers Dee and Lune soon follow. A pleasant stroll along the River Kent takes you into the Lake District National Park and then onto the finish point at Bowness on Windermere.
Highlights on the route include the spectacular Linton Falls.
Derwent Water9 miles (14 km)Enjoy a walk along one of the Lake District's most beautiful lakes. Derwent Water (or Derwenwater) is particularly lovely - it's surrounded by fells and has several pretty islands including Derwent Island House, an 18th-century residence owned by the National Trust and open to the public on five days each year.
The route makes use of the Cumbria Way and the Allerdale Ramble walking trails so is well defined and way-marked throughout.
The walk starts in the popular town of Keswick and follows the path along the western side of the lake. On the way down you stay close to the waters edge for most of the way. There are also some lovely woodland sections to enjoy.
At the end of the lake you return north on the Allerdale Ramble with a short climb taking you along the lower part of Cat Bells fell and away from the lakeside. There are fabulous views of the lake from the high points before descending through Overside Wood and returning to Keswick.
Dungeon Ghyll2 miles (4 km)This walk follows a popular path through Stickle Ghyll to Stickle Tarn in the Great Langdale area of the Lake District. The path runs alongside the spectactular Dungeon Ghyll Force waterfall and involves a climb of about 1500 ft on a series of stone steps. Most of the path is quite easy although there are a couple of rockier sections which require a bit of scrambling. The walk is very popular with young families.
When you reach the summit you are rewarded with magnificent views of the surrounding area, with Lake Windermere and Elterwater clearly visible. The walk then takes you around the peaceful Stickle Tarn before descending to the start point at the car park.
At the end of the walk you'll find the National Trust run Sticklebarn where you can buy a well earned drink!
One other option is to head to the nearby Easedale Tarn by heading east from Stickle Tarn rather than descending the waterfall.
Easedale Tarn6 miles (9 km)Enjoy a walk to the lovely Easedale Tarn in the Lake District. The walk begins in the popular town of Grasmere and follows the Easedale Road towards the pretty Easedale Beck. You then join footpaths taking you up to the tarn, passing the beautiful Sourmilk Gill waterfalls on the way. The tarn is in a lovely spot between Tarn Crag to the north and Blea Rigg to the south. It is generally quite a peaceful spot and a great escape from the often busy Grasmere town. There is a footpath around the tarn though this may be quite boggy. From the tarn, you return via Cockly Crag, Stenners Crag and Jackdaw Crag, before rejoining the Easedale Road back into Grasmere.
Another option is to continue to the nearby Stickle Tarn and Dungeon Ghyll Waterfall. You can do this by following the footpath west from Easedale Tarn rather than returning to Grasmere.
Ennerdale Forest12 miles (20 km)Enjoy miles of traffic free cycling and walking trails in this super forest in the Lake District National Park. The route starts at the Bowness Knott car park next to the beautiful Ennerdale Water. You then head east into the forest along the lakeside path. After leaving the lake behind the track follows the River Liza into the forest to Ash Crag before returning along the south side of the river. The forest tracks are quite uneven in places so a mountain bike is required for cyclists.
The views of Ennerdale valley are fabulous with some of the highest and best-known fells in Cumbria forming a spectacular backdrop -  Great Gable, Green Gable, Brandreth, High Crag, Steeple and Pillar are all visible on the route.
Ennerdale Water7 miles (11 km)Follow the lovely lakeside path around Ennerdale water on this circular walk in the Lake District National Park. Ennerdale is ideal for a tranquil walk because of its remote location.  It is also the only lake not to have a road running alongside it so is the perfect escape.
The well defined path runs close to the shoreline for most of the route with some woodland sections along the way. The views of Ennerdale valley are fabulous with some of the highest and best-known fells in Cumbria forming a spectacular backdrop -  Great Gable, Green Gable, Brandreth, High Crag, Steeple and Pillar are all visible as you make your way around the lake.
The walk begins in the car park at the western end of the lake near Ennerdale Bridge where you can get refreshments in the Shepherd's Arms pub. There's also a car park at Bowness Knot on the northern end of the lake.
If you would like to continue your walk you could head into the adjacent Ennerdale Forest and enjoy a woodland hike along the River Liza.
Fairfield Horseshoe10 miles (16 km)This is a challenging horseshoe shaped walk which takes you on a tour of some of the Lake District's most beautiful fells. The walk begins at Ambleside and heads towards Rydal Mount, the historic home of William Wordsworth. You climb to Heron Pike and then onto Great Rigg and Fairfield before returning to Ambleside via Dove Crag, High Pike and Low Pike. The views are spectacular with Rydal Water, Grasmere, Lake Windermere and Coniston Water all visible from the peaks.
This is an extremley challenging walk with an ascent of nearly three thousand feet. The paths are well defined however, care should be taken on the summit of Fairfield where in poor visibility there is the danger of steep drops to the north and west.
Fell Foot Country Park4 miles (6.5 km)This beautiful lakeside country park is situated in the Lake District National Park at the southern tip of Lake Windermere. You can stroll along the wide lawns and along the lakeshore or hire a row boat. The walk below takes you around the park and up to the nearby Simpson Reservoir before returning to the lakeshore.
Great Gable5 miles (8 km)Great Gable is one of the most popular mountains in the Lake District for climbers. It's a steep ascent with rugged paths, a fair amount of scrambling and some of the most spectacular rock scenery in the Lake District.
The route starts at the car park at Seathwaite and ascends to Stockley Bridge following Grains Gill along the way. You continue to Greenhow Knott where you will pass the beautiful Taylor Gill Force waterfall which drops an impressive 140 feet into the Seathwaite Valley. The next section takes you along Styhead Gill to the lovely Styhead Tarn turning north west to the summit of Great Gable. The views from the peak are spectacular - you can see Ennerdale and Crummockdale, Pillar, Looking Stead, Haycock, Haystacks, High Crag, High Stile and Red Pike ridge.
The descent takes you through Great Gable's less famous (but still impressive) neighbour Green Gable, Mitchell Cove and Gillercomb. The final section runs along Sourmilk Gill to the finish point at Seathwaite car park.
Grizedale Forest4 miles (7 km)This huge forest in the Lake District has several way-marked cycling and walking trails to enjoy. There are six way-marked mountain bike trails of varying lengths and difficulty. These include a moderate (blue) 2 mile trail which visits the Goosey Foot and Juniper Tarns. The Hawkshead Moor Trail is graded red and visits the western side of the valley, overlooking Coniston Water. For an exciting rollercoaster ride try the The North Face Mountain Bike Trail. The singletrack trail offers an adrenelising descent through oak woodlands and conifer forest.
Walkers can enjoy 8 super, way-marked trails. These include the moderate Bogle Crag Trail which runs for 2.5 miles and features numerous sculptures along the way. The Silurian Way is a longer, more challenging walk which visits the summit of Carron Crag, the highest point in the forest. The walks offer great views of the Lake District mountains and lakes such as Coniston Water, Windermere and Esthwaite Water.
There's a great visitor centre at the start of the route where you can hire bikes and find out more information on all the cycling and walking trails in the forest.
Haematite Trail19 miles (31 km)This is a circular walk around the town of Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria. The walk explores the remains of the iron mining industry in the area. You will pass Newton, Little Urswick, Lindal, Askam in Furness and Marton. The walk follows the coastal path along Duddon Sands with fabulous views of the Cumbrian hills and mountains. The coastal section also passes the Sandale Haws Nature Reserve which is well worth exploring if you have time. Also of interest is the 12th century ruined monastery of Furness Abbey located on the outskirts of Barrow-in-Furness.
Haystacks5 miles (7.5 km)Although not one of the highest of the Lake District fells at (597 m, 1,958 ft), Haystacks was one of Alfred Wainright's favourites. So much so that he chose to have his ashes scattered near the summit.
The walk begins at the car park at the south eastern end of Buttermere and starts by crossing Peggy's Bridge. You then cross Buttermere Fell, ascending to Scarth Gap and then to the summit. The view is magnificent with Gable Crag on Great Gable and the western panorama of Ennerdale Water and High Crag. Crummock Water and Buttermere are also visible.
The walk then heads past the lovely Innominate Tarn, a popular beauty spot with an indented rocky shore and a line of tiny islets. Shortly after you come to Blackbeck Tarn, a long slender pool which overflows through a cleft in the crags. You continue the descent through Warnscale Bottom with views of Warnscale Beck and a series of pretty waterfalls to enjoy.
If you'd like to continue your walking then a stroll around the nearby Ennerdale Forest and Buttermere Lake are always enjoyable.
Helm Crag4 miles (6 km)Enjoy a walk to the summit of this distinctive fell in the Lake District. Alfred Wainwright said of Helm Crag: 'The virtues of Helm Crag have not been lauded enough. It gives an exhilarating little climb, a brief essay in real mountaineering, and, in a region where all is beautiful, it makes a notable contribution to the natural charms and attractions of Grasmere'. The ascent of Helm Crag is popular with walkers as it begins from the lovely town of Grasmere and is an easy/moderate climb.
The walk begins at the centre of Grasmere and follows the Easedale Road to Lancrigg, passing Easedale Beck on the way. You then follow footpaths to the summit of Helm Crag, passing White Crag on the way. The summit has wonderful views over Grasmere and towards the Helvellyn range. You will also see two rocky outcrops known as The Lamb & Lion and the striking 'Howitzer' which is the high point on Helm Crag. From the summit you soon reach Helmside where you descend back to Grasmere on country lanes.
Helvellyn4 miles (6.5 km)Helvellyn is the third highest mountain in England at 950m (3,120 ft). It is situated in the Lake District National Park between the lakes of Thirlmere Reservoir and Ullswater. This route starts at the parking lot at Thirlmere Reservoir and takes a direct, short route to the summit via Helvellyn Gill and Browncove Crags. It's a steep ascent but the path is well defined for most of the route so there isn't much scrambling. The views from the summit are spectacular. On a clear day you can see the Solway Firth and hills of south-west Scotland to the north-west, Cheviot and the Pennine Hills to the north-east, Morecambe Bay, Blackpool and the coast of North Wales to the south, and the Irish Sea to the west. 
Thrill seekers can take an alternative route from Glenridding via Striding Edge - an exposed knife edge ridge which is not for the faint hearted. See the video bellow for details.
Hill Top to Moss Eccles Tarn2 miles (2.5 km)Hill Top is the 17th century former home of children's author and illustrator Beatrix Potter. It is located in Near Sawrey in the Lake District National park and open to the public.  You can tour the house and gardens where expert guides will tell you all about the life and works of Beatrix Potter.
This nice short walk is ideal for visitors to Hill Top to try after or before their visit. It takes you up to the lovely Moss Eccles Tarn  - Beatrix Potter owned the tarn and donated it to the National Trust after her death. It served as an inspiration for some of her stories.  Alfred Wainwright described it as the 'most attractive tarn on Claife Heights'. It's stocked with water lilies and fish, and surrounded by pretty rhododendrons. A pleasant walking trail leads up to the tarn and you can return the same way or through other woodland tracks.
Hodbarrow Lakes Nature Reserve3 miles (4.6 km)Enjoy a walk around Hodbarrow Lakes RSPB on the edge of the Lake District National Park. You can stroll along the sea wall and enjoy fine views of the reserve's lakes on one side and the Duddon Estuary on the other. Look out for Teal, Widgeon, Coot, Mallard, Tufted Duck, Common Pochard, Goldeneye and Red-breasted Merganser as you make your way around the reserve. You can also sometimes see seals in the estuary.
The reserve is located just a short walk from the centre of Millom. The Cumbria Coastal Way runs past the reserve so you could pick this up and head along the coast towards Ravenglass if you would like to continue your walk.
Keswick Railway Path6 miles (10 km)Enjoy an easy cycle or walk along the Keswick Railway Path in the Lake District National Park. The tree lined path runs along the trackbed of the old Cockermouth, Keswick and Penrith railway, following the River Greta from Keswick to Threlkeld. It's great for families as it's a nice easy cycle ride with a flat and well defined path. Walkers can enjoy the path too as it makes for a super riverside stroll.
The latter part of the video below gives a good commentary on the railway path and shows the lovely scenery you can expect to see on the route. This includes the beautiful tree-clad Greta Gorge and views of the magnificent Blencathra mountain. 
Keswick to Caldbeck15 miles (24 km)This is the fourth leg of the Cumbria Way taking you from Keswick to Caldbeck.
You start off in Keswick and head north towards Skiddaw House passing Lonscale Fell and Latrigg Fell on the ascent. A short section along Grainsgill Beck takes you to Caldbeck Fells and High Pike, before descending towards the finish point at the village of Caldbeck.
Lancaster Canal57 miles (91 km)Follow the Lancaster Canal from Preston, in Lancashire, to Kendal, in Cumbria, on this splendid waterside walk or cycle. From the canal there are fine views of the Silverdale Coast, the Forest of Bowland AONB and the lovely Wyre countryside. The route passes Garstang, Lancaster and Carnforth before finishing at Kendal.
Langdale Pikes4 miles (7 km)This popular walk takes you to the top of the Langdale Pikes. One of the best known features of Great Langdale they include the Pike of Stickle, Loft Crag, Harrison Stickle and Pavey Ark. Alfred Wainright said of the Langdale Pikes: 'No mountain profile arrests and excites the attention more than that of the Langdale Pikes and no mountain group better illustrates the dramatic appeal of a sudden rising of the vertical from the horizontal; the full height from valley to summit is revealed at a glance in one simple abrupt upsurge to all travellers on the distant shore of Windermere and, more intimately, on the beautiful approach along Great Langdale. Nor is the appeal visual only: that steep ladder to heaven stirs the imagination, and even the emotions, and this is especially so whenever the towering peaks come into view suddenly and unexpectedly..'
The walk starts from the New Dungeon Ghyll National Trust car park and follows the spectactular Dungeon Ghyll Force waterfall on a footpath largely consisting of a series of stone steps. Most of the path is quite easy although there are a couple of rockier sections which require a bit of scrambling.
When you reach the summit you are rewarded with magnificent views of the surrounding area, with Lake Windermere and Elterwater clearly visible. The walk then takes you around the peaceful Stickle Tarn before passing Pavey Ark and heading west to Harrision Stickle. You continue to Pike of Stickle before descending to Loft Crag and Mark Gate.
If you'd like to try another nearby fell you could head to the nearby Bowfell. The route for this starts from very near to the start point for this one.
Langdale to Keswick15 miles (24 km)This is the third leg of the Cumbria Way taking you from Langdale to Keswick.
You start in Great Langdale following Mickleden Beck and Langstrath Beck to Rosthwaite with views of Bow Fell Mountain and Langdale Pikes on the way.
From Rosthwaite you follow the River Derwent past Castle Crag to the stunning Derwent Water where the shoreline path around the lake takes you into Keswick.
Latrigg5 miles (8.5 km)Climb this popular fell near Keswick on this lovely circular walk in the Lake District National Park. The walk starts in the town of Keswick and ascends Latrigg using the Cumbria Way and other footpaths. You continue towards Brundholme before returning through Brundholme Wood with a section along the Keswick Railway Path leading back into Keswick. This final section includes waterside walking along the River Greta.
The summit stands at 368 m (1,207 ft) and the views of Derwent Water, Keswick and down the valley of Borrowdale are stunning. This is a popular walk because of its proximity to Keswick. It is also a relatively straightforward climb on well defined paths.
Another popular fell is the nearby Catbells which gives faboulous views across Derwent Water.
Leighton Moss Nature Reserve2 miles (4 km)This large nature reserve in Silverdale, Cumbria is the perfect place for a peaceful walk in beautiful surroundings. Leighton Moss is the largest reedbed in the north west and has a number of well laid out trails for you to explore the area. An abundance of wildlife can be seen in the reserve including breeding bitterns, starlings, bearded tits, marsh harriers (see video) and red deer. There is also a fantastic cafe in a converted barn.
Leighton Moss is on the Lancashire Coastal Way walking route so there is scope for continuing your walk towards Arnside or Carnforth. You could also pay a visit to the nearby Arnside Knott. This small hill has woodland walks and fabulous views over Silverdale and the coastal estuary. Also nearby is Warton Crag nature reserve with its rare butterflies and plants.
The reserve is located right next to Silverdale railway station so is easy to access.
Levens Hall4 miles (6 km)Enjoy a peaceful walk around the beautiful park and gardens surrounding this manor house in Kendal. The walk includes a lovely waterside section along the River Kent and through the medieval deer park where Black Fallow Deer and a herd of rare breed Bagot Goats roam the area.
The park also includes a stunning topiary garden. With over 100 pieces of living sculpture it is considered the finest and oldest topiary garden in the world. Some of the trees and bushes are over 300 years old with the garden layout relatively unchanged since it was planted in the late 17th century. Sculptures include Chess pieces, the Judges Wig, the Howard Lion, the Great Umbrellas, Queen Elizabeth and her Maids of Honour, a Jug of Morocco Ale and four Peacocks. Also make time to visit the rose gardens, 17th century garden and the fragrant herb garden.
If you have time you could visit the nearby Sizergh Castle. It is less than two miles away from Levens Hall and has 1,600-acres of limestone pasture, orchards and semi-natural woodland to explore. The Cumbria Coastal Way also runs past Levens Hall so you could also continue your walk along the River Kent.
Limestone Link - Cumbria12 miles (20 km)This walk crosses the Limestone Hills from Arnside to Kirkby Lonsdale in Cumbria.
You start in Arnside and head east to Holme through Underlaid Wood. You then pass over the rocky fells at Holmepark and Clawthorpe with views of Newbiggin and Hutton Roof Crags as you go. The walk comes to an end just outside Kirkby Lonsdale.
Loweswater4 miles (6 km)Follow the lakeside path around this beautiful lake in the Lake District National Park. The walk starts at the car park at Waterend but you could just as easily start off in the village of Loweswater at the southern end of the lake. The walk includes a woodland stretch through Holme Wood where you can visit the beautiful  Holme Force Waterfall. It's just to the west of the path and worth a small detour.
Both Crummock Water and Buttermere are close by so you could continue your outing by visiting one or both of these lakes.
This route is devised for walkers but cyclists can cycle along the National Cycle Network route on the eastern side of the lake for a delightful waterside ride.
Lowther Castle4 miles (6 km)Explore 130 acres of gardens and castle terraces on this walk near Penrith in the Lake District. The walk takes you around the dramatic ruins of the 1806 Gothic castle and then on to the Lakeland Bird of Prey Centre, situated in the walled garden of Lowther Castle. Here you can see over 150 falcons, hawks, eagles, buzzards and owls from the UK and abroad.
Other highlights in the grounds include sweeping lawns, Jack Croft's pond, beautiful Summer Houses and an escarpment with fabulous views of the Lake District's hills and mountains.
The castle, gardens and stable courtyard have been redeveloped since 2011 using £8.9m of funds secured from the North West development Agency and European Regional Development Fund. It has now been turned into a major visitor attraction with cafe, shop and a display area where visitors can find out more about the process of restoration.
If you have time you could also visit the adjacent Askham Hall gardens with colourful terraces, a 230ft long double herbaceous border, formal lawns, kitchen gardens, woodland, meadows and ponds. The River Lowther also runs past the grounds so there is the option of following the riverside path towards Yanwath Wood or Helton.
Lune Valley Ramble16 miles (26 km)This lovely easy walk follows the River Lune from Lancaster to Kirkby Lonsdale in Cumbria. As well as the stunning riversde scenery there are wonderful views of the South Lakeland fells and the beautiful Crook o' Lune.
The route is bounded by high moors and limestone hills with the Ingleborough, Whernside and Leck Fells making a magnificent backdrop to the walk.
Lunesdale Walk34 miles (54 km)This figure of eight walk takes you on a tour of the beautiful scenery around Carnforth.
The trail takes in a series of waterways including the Lancaster Canal and the Rivers Lune, Hindburn, Wenning and Roeburn while also passing through several pretty towns and villages. Starting in Carnforth you will pass Swarthdale, Melling, Roeburndale, Hornby, Arkholme and Capernwray. You can also enjoy views of Morecambe Bay with the Cumbrian Mountains making a spectacular backdrop. Part of the walk also passes through the stunning Forest of Bowland AONB with its fabulous landscapes, woodland, hills and variety of wildlife.
Miller's Way51 miles (82 km)Follow in the footsteps of Jonathan Dodgson Carr, Quaker visonary and founder of the Carr's breadmaker company in Cumbria. The walk runs from Kendal to Carlisle passing Shap Fells, Lowther Park and the River Lowther, Penrith, the Howgills, the Pennines and the Eden Valley. The walk includes long waterside sections along the River Lowther through Lowther Park to Penrith and then along the River Petteril from Penrith to Carlisle.
Walk highlights include the 12th century Shap Abbey on the western bank of the River Lowther near the village of Shap. Also of interest is the splendid Lowther Castle and Gardens. Here you can explore the castle ruins and the beautiful grounds.
The walk is waymarked with a green and white disc.
Muncaster Castle4 miles (6 km)Enjoy an easy stroll around the beautiful grounds and gardens of this Grade I listed building in Ravenglass. There are 77 acres of beautiful gardens to explore and over 6 miles of walking paths through the estate. Visit the bluebell wood, the wildflower meadow, the Japanese garden, the Himalayan garden and the pretty Dragonfly pond.
If you would like to continue your walk then you can follow Cumbria Coastal Way which runs through Ravenglass. It's a beautiful area located on the estuaries of three rivers - the Esk, Mite and Irt. The Drigg, Dunes and Irt Estuary Nature Reserve is also a great place for bird watching.
Old Man of Coniston5 miles (7.5 km)Climb the  2,634 feet (803 m) high Old Man of Coniston on this strenuous walk in the Lake District. The route starts at Coniston village and soon joins Church Beck which you follow for about a mile before heading past Crowberry Haws, Stubthwaite Crag and the dramatically positioned tarn of Low Water to the summit. Here you will find a combined slate platform and cairn with magnificent views of the southern Lake District, Morecambe Bay, Blackpool Tower, Winter Hill in the Pennines, the Lancashire coast and the Isle of Man.
This route is popular with tourists and offers a direct and picturesque path to the summit.
Red Screes4 miles (6 km)This cirular route takes you up Red Screes fell in the Lake District National Park. The walk begins in the popular town of Ambleside and ascends to Scandale Fell and Scandale Pass along the Scandale Beck. From Scandale Pass you turn east to the summit of Red Screes. Here you will find cairns, a circular stone shelter and the pretty Red Screes tarn. There are magnificent views of Helvellyn, Dove Crag, Fairfield and over Deepdale Hause. To the west you can see the Coniston, Bowfell and Scafell fells. You descend passing Raven Crag to Snarker Moss where the ground can be quite boggy. You continue to Snarker Pike before reaching the Kirkstone Road which will take you back into Ambleside.
Sandscale Haws National Nature Reserve4 miles (6 km)Explore the sandy estuary of the River Duddon with the backdrop of Lake District mountains in this National Trust run nature reserve in Cumbria.
There's some fascinating wildlife to be seen with the rare Natterjack Toad, Great Crested Newts, wintering wildfowl, Pintail, Red Knot, Curlews and Common Redshank. You can explore the sandy beach with views of the Duddon Estuary and the expansive beautiful dune habitat with Coralroot orchids.
The reserve is located just a few miles north of Barrow-in-Furness on the Cumbria Coastal Way. If you have time you could continue your walk along this super walkway north to Askam-in-Furness or south to Barrow-in-Furness.
Scafell Pike5 miles (8.2 km)Climb the highest mountain in England on this spectacular walk in the Lake District. Scafell pike stands at a height of 978 metres (3,209 ft) between Eskdale and Wasdale, at the northern end of Wast Water. The route below is the shortest, most direct way to the summit. It starts from the car park in Wasdale Head village and heads to Lingmell Gill, Lingmell Scars and Hollow Stones before finishing at the highest point where you will find an Ordnance Survey triangulation column beside a huge cairn. The views are stunning with the coast, the Isle of Man and Snowdonia all visible on a clear day.
Sizergh Castle2 miles (4 km)Enjoy a short walk through the delightful grounds of Sizergh Castle in the Lake District. There are 1,600-acres to explore including limestone pasture, orchards and semi-natural woodland. The beautiful gardens contain a pond, a lake, and a limestone rock garden. There are also fabulous views of the Yorkshire Dales and the Lake District.
The site is run by the National Trust so there are excellent facilities with a cafe, shop and guided tours around the interesting medieval Sizergh Castle. There is also an ancient Yew Tree reckoned to be 1,600 years old - ask at reception for details.
The walk route below takes you around the castle grounds and through Low Wood to the River Kent before returning to the start point at the castle. Sizergh is located about 2 miles south of Kendal. One option is to follow the River Kent from Kendal to the castle which is not far from the river.
If you have time you could visit the nearby Levens Hall. Here you will find a deer park and a stunning topiary garden with over 100 pieces of living sculpture.
Skiddaw13 miles (21 km)This challenging walk guides you up Skiddaw in the Lake District. Skiddaw is the 4th highest mountain in England and is a popular climb with hill walkers. This route makes use of the Allerdale Ramble way-marked walking trail so is well defined and easy to follow.
The route begins from the town of Keswick at the northern end of the beautiful Derwent Water. You then head to Millbeck and onto the summit where you will find cairns and a number of stone windshelters. The views are magnificent - you can see the Cheviots, North Pennines, Yorkshire Dales, Forest of Bowland and the Isle of Arran on a clear day. You then descend to Longside Edge and Ullock Pike before a woodland stretch through Thornthwaite Forest takes you to the River Derwent. You then follow the lovely riverside path back into Keswick.
South Tyne Trail23 miles (37 km)Travel through the fabulous North Pennines AONB and enjoy some spectaular scenery on this shared walking and cycle path.
The trail starts off at Tyne Head - the source of the River South Tyne. You then head north to Garrigill along the river passing the impressive Ashgill Force waterfall as you go (se video). The trail continues to Alston where you will run alongside the fabulous South Tynedale Steam Railway (see video).
From Alston you head through Slaggyford and Lambley where you will pass the striking structure that is Lambley Viaduct. The final section takes you through Coanwood to the finish point at Haltwhistle rail station.
This is a terrific riverside trail with moors, fells and beautiful countryside to take in.
Talkin Tarn Country Park1 miles (2 km)Explore this 165 acre coumtry park in Brampton, and enjoy the large glacial tarn, mature woodland and gentle meadows with the stunning Pennine Hills as a backdrop. The park includes a well maintained path around the tarn and three other way-marked trails taking you through the surrounding woodland and fields. Facilities include a tearoom, gift shop and row boats available for hire on the tarn.
Tarn Hows2 miles (3.5 km)This popular beauty spot is perfect for a peaceful walk in beautiful surroundings. The area is run by the National Trust and consists of a large picturesque tarn surrounded by woodland. There are well surfaced tracks taking you around the tarn and into the woodland. From the high points there are lovely views of the Lake District Mountains and the surrounding countryside. On a clear day you can see Helvellyn, Nethermost Pike, Dollywaggon Pike, Fairfield, Hart Crag and Dove Crag.
The Cumbria Way long distance walk runs through Tarn Hows. You could pick this up to continue your walk towards Elterwater (north) or head south to Coniston. Also nearby is the wonderful Grizedale Forest with numerous walking and cycling trails to enjoy.
The route below starts from the car park and takes you around the tarn in an anti-clockwise direction.
Teesdale Way92 miles (148 km)Follow the River Tees from Dufton, in Cumbria, to Redcar on the North Yorkshire coast.
The first section takes you through the Pennine Hills, from Dufton to Forest-in-Teesdale. There is some spectacular scenery as you pass through Dufton Fell and then past Cow Green Reservoir before joining the River Tees near the village of Forest-in-Teesdale. This section is coincident with the Pennine Way National Trail and includes several beautiful waterfalls as shown in the video below.
From Forest-in-Teesdale you continue along the river passing Newbiggin, Middleton-in-Teesdale and Egglesdon Hall on your way to Barnard Castle. Here you will find two fascinating historical buildings in the 12th century Barnard castle and the ruined abbey at nearby Egglestone.
The next section runs from Barnard Castle to Darlington. This section very closely follows the banks of the River Tees, passing Whorlton and the Roman Fort at Piercebridge on the way.
From Darlington you continue east towards Stockton-on-Tees. This section takes you past Teesside Airport and the pretty town of Yarm.
The final section takes you through the industrial landscape of Stockton-on-Tees and Middlesbrough, passing the impressive Infinity Bridge, Middlesbrough Docks and the Riverside Stadium before finishing on the outskirts of Redcar.
Thirlmere Reservoir9 miles (15 km)Enjoy a walk or cycle around the lovely Thirlmere Reservoir in the Lake District National Park. The route starts at Wythburn at the southern end of the lake and then follows the National Cycle Network route on the western side of the lake. On the return on the eastern side of the lake walkers can follow the woodland trail at the lower part of Helvellyn. Cyclists can follow the A591 which runs right alongside the lake for a couple of miles.
You can get a bit to eat at the inn at Thirlspot.
Ulverston to Coniston15 miles (24 km)This is the first leg of the Cumbria Way taking you from Ulverston to Coniston.
The walk first heads towards the village of Gawthwaite before continuing onto the beautiful Coniston Water. You then follow the footpath along the lake taking you into the village of Coniston.
Other highlights on this section are splendid views of the 2634 foot high Old Man of Coniston Fell while Grizedale Forest is also visible for much of the walk.
Wainwright's Coast to Coast183 miles (294 km)Travel from the west coast of England to the east along this breathtaking route devised by Alfred Wainwright. The walk passes through three of England's most beautiful National Parks taking you on a tour of some of the most incredible scenery in the country.
Starting at St Bees Head the route leads you into the wonderful Lake District National Park with its series of beautiful lakes and mountains.
The path continues east into the Yorkshire Dales National Park with more delightful countryside to enjoy.
The final stretch takes you through the splendid moorland scenery of the North York Moors National Park and then along the North Yorkshire coast to the finish point at the fishing village of Robin Hood's Bay.
Wansfell Pike6 miles (10 km)This circular walk in the Lake District takes you up Wansfell Pike fell to Troutbeck, and then back through Skelghyll woods. It's popular with walkers as it begins and ends in the accessible town of Ambleside.
The first section of the walk takes you from the centre of Ambleside to Stock Ghyll Force, a spectacular 70 foot waterfall which can be viewed safely from a railed viewpoint. You continue the ascent to the peak of Wansfell Pike where there are stunning views of the Coniston Fells, Fairfield, Lake Windermere and Red Screes. You descend along Nanny Lane to the village of Troutbeck before country lanes take you on to Townend. This 17th century stone and slate farmhouse is run by the National Trust and open to the public. Inside you will find intricately carved furniture, a traditional farmhouse kitchen with a real fire and a fine collection of books which are of international importance.
From Townend you follow Robin Lane to Skelghyll woods before returing to Ambleside.
The route is also often started from Troutbeck - see the lovely video on the right for details.
Wast Water7 miles (11 km)Enjoy a circular walk around one of the most stunning lakes in the Lake District National Park. Wast Water is the deepest of all the lakes and is surrounded by some of the highest mountains - Red Pike, Kirk Fell, Great Gable and Scafell Pike (England's highest mountain). In 2007 the public voted Wast Water Britain’s favourite view in an ITV television program. Although the complete route below is suitable for walkers, a quiet country road runs along the western edge of the lake so you can enjoy an excellent waterside cycle ride too.
Wast Water is located about 6 miles north east of Ravenglass.
Whinlatter Forest Park7 miles (11 km)Enjoy some fantastic walking and cycling trails in this huge park in the Lake District. There are fantastic views of Bassenthwaite Lake, Derwentwater and Keswick as you make your way through the mixed species forest and peaceful glades. The park also has two fantastic purpose built mountain bike trails with cycle hire available within the park. The red graded Altura Trail is a challenging 19 km mountain singletrack, the Quercus Trail is an easier 7.5 km trail. The C2C cycle route also runs through the park so you could continue your ride on the Whitehaven to Keswick or Whitehaven to Penrith cycle route.
Whitbarrow National Nature Reserve7 miles (11 km)Enjoy wonderful limestone scenery, ancient woodland and rich ground flora in this nature reserve near Witherslack in the Lake District National Park. The walk starts at Mill Side and heads to Whitbarrow Scar on footpaths and quiet country lanes. You then climb to the high point known as the Lord's seat where you will find a large obelisk shaped cairn. From here there are marvellous panoramic views of the River Kent Estuary and Morecambe Bay. The return leg is a gentle descent along woodland paths passing Wakebarrow, Rough Hill Wood, Windy Howe and Watson's Wood before returning to Mill Side.
Features in the reserve include a small traditional orchard with Westmorland damson and apple trees and pretty bluebell woodland. Wildlife lovers should look out for roe and red deer at Howe Ridding Wood. Birdlife includes buzzard, raven, sparrowhawk, woodcock, great spotted woodpecker, redstart and nuthatch.
Alfred Wainwright praises Whitbarrow in his book 'The Outlying Fells of Lakeland' describing it as 'the most beautiful [walk] in this book, beautiful it is every step of the way. ... All is fair to the eye on Whitbarrow.'
Whitbarrow can be easily reached from Kendal which is about 5 miles to the north east.
Windermere Way41 miles (66 km)A circular walk around Lake Windermere in the beautiful Lake District.
Wray Castle3 miles (5.4 km)This walk takes you around the grounds of the National Trust owned Wray Castle and then up to the nearby Blelham Tarn. The Mock-Gothic castle is located on the shores of Lake Windermere so the trail includes a lovely waterside section at the start. The grounds also include pretty gardens and woodland with a tree trail which is great for children.
After leaving the grounds this walk involves a short climb through delightful countryside to the pretty Blelham Tarn. The trail runs around the tarn and then gently descends to the finish point back at the castle.
If you would like to continue your walk you could pick up the Windermere Way and continue around this fabulous lake.




 Cumbria Walking Links
NameDescription
Lake District National ParkOfficial site for this stunning area
North Pennines AONBLots of useful information for this beautiful region

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