Honister Slate Mine

Top choice in The Lake District

This old slate mine has been reinvented as a centre for all kinds of activities: you could venture underground into the bowels of the old 'Edge' and 'Kimberley' mines, tackle a via ferrata, or climb inside the mine along a system of fixed cables, tracing the route followed by the slate miners. A tour into the 'Cathedral' mine runs on Friday by request, but you'll need eight people and it costs £25 per person.

If it all sounds like too much hard work, you can just pick up some slate souvenirs in the shop – perhaps a new sign, house number or fancy plate.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby The Lake District attractions

1. Bowder Stone

2.66 MILES

A mile south from Grange, a turn-off leads up to the geological curiosity known as the Bowder Stone, a 1700-tonne lump of rock left behind by a retreating…

2. Watendlath Tarn

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This National Trust–owned tarn is reached via a turn-off on the B5285 south of Keswick. On the way the road passes over one of the Lake District's most…

3. St Olaf's Church

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Supposedly one of the tiniest chapels in England, this 16th-century church is full of atmosphere. Legend claims the roof beams were salvaged from a Viking…

4. Lodore Falls

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At the southern end of Derwentwater, this famous waterfall featured in a poem by Robert Southey, but it's only worth visiting after a good spell of rain…

5. Wastwater

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In his 1810 Guide to the Lakes, William Wordsworth described Wastwater as 'long, narrow, stern and desolate', and it's a description that still seems apt…

6. Derwent Pencil Museum

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Reopened after being badly damaged in the 2015 floods, Keswick's oddest museum is devoted to the charms of the humble pencil – with exhibits including a…

7. Keswick Museum

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Keswick's quirky town museum explores the area's history, from ancient archaeology through to the arrival of industry in the Lakes. It's a diverse…

8. Whinlatter Forest Park


Encompassing 4.6 sq miles of pine, larch and spruce, Whinlatter is England's only true mountain forest, rising sharply to 790m about 5 miles from Keswick…