Carlisle Cathedral

Cumbria & the Lakes

Built from the same red sandstone as Carlisle Castle, Carlisle's cathedral began life as a priory church in 1122 and became a cathedral when its first abbot, Athelwold, became the first bishop of Carlisle. Among its notable features are the 15th-century choir stalls, the barrel-vaulted roof and the 14th-century East Window, one of the largest Gothic windows in England. Surrounding the cathedral are other priory relics, including the 16th-century fratry and the prior's tower.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Cumbria & the Lakes attractions

1. Tullie House Museum


Carlisle's flagship museum covers 2000 years of the city's past. The Roman Frontier Gallery explores Carlisle's Roman foundations, while the Border…

2. Carlisle Castle


Carlisle's brooding, rust-red castle lurks on the north side of the city. Founded around a Celtic and Roman stronghold, the castle's Norman keep was added…

3. Cumbria's Museum of Military Life


Contained inside the walls of Carlisle Castle, this new museum explores the county's proud military history, with weapons, medals, standards, uniforms and…

4. Famous Blacksmith's Shop

9.11 MILES

At the centre of the village of Gretna Green, the touristy Famous Blacksmith’s Shop complex has a number of mediocre shops and eateries, a maze, and a…

5. Lanercost Priory

10.88 MILES

Situated 2.6 miles northeast of Brampton in Cumbria, these peaceful raspberry-coloured ruins are all that remain of a priory founded in 1166 by…

6. Birdoswald Roman Fort

14.9 MILES

The remains of this once-formidable fort (known as Banna to the Romans) are on an escarpment overlooking the beautiful Irthing Gorge along a minor road…

7. St Andrews Church

17.62 MILES

Penrith's name derives from an old Celtic word meaning 'red fell', and the area's crimson sandstone is clear to see in many of the town's buildings,…

8. Penrith Castle

17.76 MILES

The ruins of Penrith Castle loom on the edge of town opposite the train station. Built in the 14th century by William Strickland (later Bishop of Carlisle…