for those who love the outdoors

10 December, 2023


Your Burning Questions About the Lake District: Answered!

The Lake District has always been a popular tourist hotspot, with over 18 million visitors to the area in 2022 alone. In fact, the whole area was recently named among the top landmarks in the country, beating other recognisable tourist favourites such as Tower Bridge, Windsor Castle and Stonehenge.

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This picturesque area of the UK is also a hit on social media, with the hashtag #lakedistrict racking up over 500 million views on TikTok and another four million tags on Instagram. The Lakes are one of the most popular locations for staycations this year, with demand rising for hotels, cafes, activities and even second homes in the area.

With its gorgeous landscapes and endless activities, the Lakes should definitely be at the top of your UK travel list. But whether you’re a seasoned visitor to the area or it’s your first time exploring, you’ll likely have some burning questions about how best to spend your time there.

Pure Leisure, which offers Lake District lodges for sale, has gathered together some of the most frequently asked questions about the area to give you all the best information before your break.

Key findings

  • There were over 18 million visitors to the Lake District in 2022.
  • The Lake District was recently named among the top landmarks in the country.
  • The hashtag #lakedistrict has over 500 million views on TikTok.
  • The hashtag #lakedistrict has four million tags on Instagram.
  • The Lakes have become one of the most popular locations for staycations in 2023.
  • There are 3,600 monthly Google searches for the phrase ‘National Trust Lake District’.
  • This December, the National Trust’s Townend farmhouse is hosting a special Victorian Christmas.
  • There are 3,600 monthly Google searches for the phrase ‘best area to stay in the Lake District’.
  • The town of Ulverston marks the beginning of the 70-mile Cumbria Way.
  • There are 5,400 monthly Google searches for the phrase ‘walks in the Lakes’.
  • Scafell Pike is the highest mountain in England at 3,209 feet.
  • There are 14,800 monthly Google searches for the phrase ‘Lake District accommodation with hot tub’.
  • There are 14,800 monthly Google searches for the phrase ‘things to do in the Lake District’.

Which National Trust locations should I visit in the Lake District? – 3,600 MSV

There are plenty of gorgeous National Trust locations scattered throughout the Lake District. But with many popular choices, such as Beatrix Potter’s home, Hill Top, now closed for the season, which ones should you make your priority this winter?

The beautiful Sizergh estate remains partially open during the colder months. The house itself remains closed during winter, but the stunning garden, park, shop and café are open at pre-approved times.

Take in the gorgeous mirror lake, take a stroll through the apple orchard and enjoy the limestone rock garden before heading to the café for a well-deserved hot meal using seasonal produce from Sizergh’s own kitchen garden. Head to the shop before you leave to treat yourself to some locally-made home accessories as a token of remembrance for your trip.

If you love history and you’re heading to Windermere in December, then you’re in luck! Exclusively on the 6th, 13th and 20th December, the National Trust’s Townend farmhouse is hosting a special Victorian Christmas.

Experience this 400-year-old house by candlelight and discover how it would have looked in the late 1800s. Enjoy a Victorian cooking demonstration and immerse yourself in the history of the area. Perfect for history buffs and young families alike!

If you’re planning on taking a stroll through the grounds of a National Trust property this winter, remember to wrap up warm and treat yourself to a nice, warm drink afterwards.

What’s the best area to stay in the Lake District? – 3,600 MSV

If you’re looking for a real hidden gem to visit this winter, Pure Leisure Manager Jemima Moore suggests a stay in Milnthorpe. She says, “This medieval market town has strong industrial heritage and is a great choice if you love spending time walking through scenic landscapes, followed by a spot of shopping at local, independent retailers.”

Originally known as ‘the village by the mill’, Milnthorpe is bursting with interesting history, comfortable inns and delicious restaurants. If you’re an animal lover, check out the 18th-century deer park near Dallam Tower to be in with a chance to spot one of the majestic creatures.

Another gorgeous area of the Lakes is Ulverston, a lovely market town that marks the beginning of the 70-mile Cumbria Way. If you’re planning to take on this five-day-long walk, Ulverston is the perfect place to stay the night before to bolster your strength!

Observe some history at St Mary’s Church, which dates from AD 1111 and marvel at the handmade crystal creations at Cumbria Crystal. If you’d love to try your own hand at glass blowing, why not book a one-on-one glass-blowing experience to blow your own crystal bauble to hang on your tree this festive season?

Where are the best walks in the Lake District? – 5,400 MSV

There are hundreds of miles of walking trails to choose from within the 912 square miles of the Lake District National Park. But some of them require more hiking experience and specialist walking equipment than others.

If you’re a beginner, it’s best to stick to the flatter, easier trails at first. The Tarn Hows walking route is a great one to start with and it only takes around an hour and a half to complete. The tarn itself is a stunning sight in the winter, with its glossy, almost black water, while the surrounding woodland provides a suitably atmospheric backdrop. Snow is common in this area during the colder months, making for some gorgeous photographs if you time your walk right!

The main walking route is fully accessible for those with less mobility and those who use a wheelchair. All-terrain scooters are available to book 48 hours in advance. The route is also suitable for children and buggies, so you can bring the whole family with you!

If you have more experience with hiking and mountain climbing, don’t miss Scafell Pike. With multiple routes to the top, this route normally takes around four hours and features some truly challenging moments. With stunning views from the peak, especially under the sugar-dusting of snow commonly seen during the winter months, it’s clear why this trail is so popular.

The highest mountain in England at 3,209 feet, Scafell Pike demands respect. Only attempt this trail if you feel well-equipped in both experience and equipment. If you manage to make it to the peak, you’ll be rewarded with some truly incredible views stretching right across to the Isle of Man.

Remember to wear warm clothes and proper walking shoes, especially if you’re tackling one of the harder routes. Always bring your waterproofs as you can never predict the British weather!

Where can I find Lake District accommodation with a hot tub? – 14,800 MSV

There are over 14,800 monthly searches on Google asking where you can find great accommodation in the Lake District, complete with a hot tub! It seems more and more of us are looking for relaxation and luxury when it comes to our staycations.

If you’re inspired to visit Milnthorpe and you’re looking for accommodation with a relaxed, homely feel, why not book a rustic glamping pod at Fell End Caravan Park? Not only is this camp site set in the glorious landscape of the Arnside and Silverdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, but it also boasts a shared swimming pool, gym and more!

Your private rustic glamping pod has a double bed, full kitchenette and shower room. It also features its very own wood-fired hot tub to keep you warm this winter! Enjoy a peaceful evening under the stars in the gorgeous surroundings of Milnthorpe.

If you’re on the lookout for luxurious hotel accommodation, check out Armathwaite Hall and Spa. Book an indulgent spa escape and enjoy the beautiful views of Bassenthwaite Lake from the spa hot tub. From studio suites to family rooms, there’s something for everyone at Armathwaite and the award-winning spa is sure to provide you with five-star treatment. Featuring a 16-metre infinity pool, sauna, gym and more, you’ll leave feeling refreshed and revived.

What are the best things to do in the Lake District? – 14,800 MSV

With an overwhelming number of monthly searches for ‘things to do in the Lake District’, it’s obvious many of us are exciting about our upcoming trips to the area – and the Lakes don’t disappoint!

Even during the colder months, there’s plenty to do for couples, families and solo travellers. If hiking and wildlife spotting isn’t really your thing, make sure to head to Grasmere. This gorgeous little village is best known as the location of Dove Cottage, the home of famous poet William Wordsworth.

Visit the Wordsworth Museum to learn more about the poet’s life and his inspiration. Take a gallery tour, enjoy some live poetry from the museum’s dramatic performers and try your hand at some poetry of your own.

Before leaving the area, make sure to stop in at the famous Grasmere Gingerbread Shop. The sweet treat is still made using the recipe invented by Victorian cook Sarah Nelson in 1854 and is truly delicious! The shop also sells award-winning rum butter, toffee, fudge and more.

If you’re a whisky drinker, The Lakes Distillery is the place for you. Book a tour of this working distillery to discover the process of making a perfectly smooth, award-winning whisky. Make sure you taste test the latest batch to warm you through this winter!

The distillery also crafts its own sophisticated gin and delicious vodka and will host a wreath-making masterclass on the 7th of December, followed by a special afternoon tea.

If you’re more the outdoors activity type, the Castlerigg Stone Circle is a must-see piece of history that will look storybook-perfect in the frost of winter. With incredible views of the imposing Helvellyn and High Seat in the background, this unusual circle of stones dates back to the Neolithic period.

It’s one of the earliest British stone circles that historians are aware of and features an unusual rectangle of standing stones within the circle itself. The only other stone circle featuring this addition is at Askham Fell, near Ullswater.

Make your next trip to the Lake District special by heading on a walking trail, booking an exciting day out at the Lakes Distillery or Cumbria Crystal and then relaxing during the evening in your very own wood-fired hot tub!

However you choose to spend your break in the Lakes, you’ll never be stuck for brilliant activities and fantastic accommodation.

Outside & Active

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Outside & Active is the home for those who love the outdoors. Our mission is to inspire, inform and educate people about being active outdoors in a fun, safe and sustainable way. We provide inspiration, kit, tech and advice on adventure, camping, climbing, cycling, hiking, running water and winter.

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