Unmissable Lake District Attractions
The Lake District is a beautiful landscape with plenty for you to explore and experience even if you’re simply taking in the scenery. However, we at the Lake District Pound know that there’s so much more to the Lake District than breathtaking views. As a UNESCO World Heritage site, The Lake District is an area of the UK rich with cultural experiences for you and the family to enjoy that are sure to make lasting memories.
If you’re planning a visit to the Lake District and you’re unsure where you might like to start exploring everything this special corner of the UK has to offer, we recommend taking a read of our guide to unmissable Lake District attractions.
In this guide, we’ll give you an insight into some of the most unmissable Lake District attractions you can experience in the region, from family days out to adventurous expeditions and historic hidden gems. Discover unmissable Lake District attractions for your trip with Lake District Pound.
1. Windermere Lake Cruises
Transporting you to the epicentre of spectacular mountain views, a cruise along Lake Windermere is a must-do for anyone wishing to take in some of the best scenery the Lake District has to offer. One of the premier Lake District attractions, you can embark on a Windermere Lake Cruise that takes you on an intimate journey through some of The Lake District’s hidden gems.
2. The Lakes Aquarium
Lovers of aquatic life are sure to be inspired by The Lakes Aquarium. Host to some of the most exotic species of wildlife, as well as a wonderful showcase of local wildlife, The Lakes Aquarium is a fantastic way to come face to face with wondrous creatures from around the world. Discover highlights such as an underwater tunnel and a virtual dive bell as you walk through The Lakes Aquarium, spotting creatures from otters to sharks, rays to marmoset monkeys and much more.
3. Honister Slate Mine
Honister Pass is one of the most dramatic sights in the Lake District, but there’s so much more to be discovered close-up. At its head, Honister Pass is home to Honister Slate Mine - the last working slate mine in England. Westmorland green slate may be world famous, but it is produced right here in Honister Slate Mine. You can discover Honister Slate Mine by taking a mine tour that takes you deep inside the heart of the mountain, or perhaps a brave explorer will dare to ‘Climb the Mine’ and follow the route tread long ago by the first miners at Honister Slate Mine.
4. The World of Beatrix Potter
Those who have grown up reading the tales of Peter Rabbit, Jemina Puddle-duck, Mrs Tiggy-winkle and friends are sure to rediscover their childhood at The World of Beatrix Potter in Bowness. Perfect for anyone of any age who cherishes the magical world that Beatrix Potter created, The World of Beatrix Potter allows you to take a self-guided tour of some of their favourite scenes from Beatrix Potter’s books. Take in scenes from Peter Rabbit’s garden to Mrs Tiggy-winkle’s kitchen, Mr McGregor’s greenhouse and enjoy an adventure into the setting that inspired the stories of Beatrix Potter.
5. Holker Hall & Gardens
Lord and Lady Cavendish have been generous enough to open their stately home of Holker Hall to many visitors over the years. Featuring spectacular gardens brimming with wildlife to the ostentatious west wing of the house, Holker Hall & Gardens is a beautiful testament to Victorian architecture, decor and craftsmanship. Passed down through the generations, Holker Hall dates as far back as the 16th Century, leaving plenty of history to delve into during your trip through the spacious halls and garden.
6. Hill Top - Beatrix Potter’s Home
If the magic of The World of Beatrix Potter doesn’t satisfy you, you may enjoy the historic home of Beatrix Potter, Hill Top. Beatrix Potter first purchased Hill Top following the success of the Tale of Peter Rabbit and continued to be inspired to write many more adventures during her time there. Hill Top has remained largely unchanged since Beatrix Potter lived there, standing as a time-capsule of this period of her life. Discover rare illustrations within and immerse yourself fully in the life and times of Beatrix Potter.
7. The Lakeland Motor Museum
The Lakeland Motor Museum is a true celebration of the UK’s motoring heritage. With over 100 years worth of motoring vehicles and more, The Lakeland Motor Museum plays host to over 30,000 exhibits that include an interesting mixture of original and replica motors for you and the family to explore, especially if it's raining!
8. Dove Cottage & The Wordsworth Museum
Owned by William Wordsworth since 1799, Dove Cottage in Grasmere has remained a monument to his greatest creative period ever since. Occupied by Wordsworth and his family, including sister Dorothy, Dove Cottage is an essential part of The Wordsworth Museum that boasts the world’s largest Wordsworth collection including letters, journals and poems penned by Wordsworth himself. Whether you’re passionate about Wordsworth’s works or simply have a love of the written word, you’re sure to be inspired by the literary history that Dove Cottage has to offer.
9. Rydal Mount & Gardens
Wordsworth left his mark on the Lake District in more places than Grasmere. At Rydal Mount overlooking Lake Windermere and Rydal Water, Wordsworth wrote some of his most impactful works including his famous poem Daffodils. Featuring plenty of mementoes of Wordsworth’s time here, Rydal Mount boasts original Tudor stone floors and wooden beams in the oldest parts of the cottage. Enjoy refreshments in the Rydal Mount tea rooms, immerse yourself in literary history, or take in breathtaking views from the spacious gardens.
10. Grasmere Gingerbread Shop
Still producing the famous snappable-yet-chewy gingerbread to the closely guarded original recipe, the Grasmere Gingerbread Shop is a must-visit Lake District attraction. Expect Victorian costumes and a likely queue into the tiny bakery and shop where Grasmere Gingerbread has been made since 1854.
11. Castlerigg Stone Circle
One of the oldest and most atmospheric stone circles in England, Castlerigg stone circle at Keswick is wondrous to behold. Comprised of 38 stones in total, Castlerigg stone circle is one of the largest of the many remaining stone circles in the UK. Unlike many stone circles, Castlerigg stone circle was constructed about 3000 BC in the Neolithic period. A truly ancient wonder of the Lake District that’s best enjoyed at sunset for a special and often spiritual experience.
There are so many wonderful Lake District attractions waiting to be discovered in all corners of the UNESCO World Heritage site of The Lake District. If you’re planning a visit, why not give back to local businesses as you enjoy the many Lake District attractions with a Lake District Pound Passport?