Top things to do

Top Choice Historic Building in Hawkshead

Hill Top

Two miles south of Hawkshead, in the tiny village of Near Sawrey, this idyllic farmhouse was purchased in 1905 by Beatrix Potter and was used as inspiration for many of her tales: the house features directly in Samu…
Top Choice Historic Building in Ambleside

Rydal Mount

The poet William Wordsworth's most famous residence in the Lake District is undoubtedly Dove Cottage, but he actually spent a great deal more time at Rydal Mount, 1.5 miles northwest of Ambleside, off the A591. This…
Top Choice Historic Building in Grasmere

Dove Cottage & The Wordsworth Museum

On the edge of Grasmere, this tiny, creeper-clad cottage (formerly a pub called the Dove & Olive Bough) was famously inhabited by William Wordsworth between 1799 and 1808. The cottage's cramped rooms are full of…
Top Choice Historic Building in Cockermouth

Wordsworth House

The poet William Wordsworth was born on 7 April 1770 at this handsome Georgian house at the end of Main St. Built around 1745, the house has been meticulously restored based on accounts from the Wordsworth archive: …
Top Choice Pub Food in Hawkshead

Drunken Duck

Long one of the Lakes' premier dining destinations, the Drunken Duck blends historic pub and fine-dining restaurant. On a wooded crossroads on the top of Hawkshead Hill, it's renowned for its luxurious food and home…
Top Choice Pub Food in Kendal

Punch Bowl Inn

If you don't mind a drive, this renowned gastropub in the village of Crosthwaite has long been known for its top-notch food. Whitewashed outside, carefully modernised inside, it's a cosy, inviting space to dine. Che…
Top Choice Food in Kendal

Low Sizergh Barn

A prodigious selection of Lakeland goodies are available at this farm shop, just outside Kendal on the A590. There's also a farm trail and woodland walk to follow if the weather's nice, and you can watch the cows be…
Top Choice Cafe in Keswick

Fellpack

This on-trend cafe specialises in 'fell pots' – a Lakeland-style Buddha bowl, incorporating an all-in-one meal such as sweet potato and curry, smoked macaroni and peas, or braised chilli beef, all freshly made and f…
Top Choice Bistro in Ambleside

Old Stamp House

In the cellar of the building where Wordsworth worked as a distributor of stamps, this fine-dining bistro champions Cumbrian produce, much of it raised, caught, shot or cured within a few miles' radius. You'll find …
Top Choice Bistro in Ambleside

Lake Road Kitchen

This much-lauded bistro has brought some dazzle to Ambleside's dining scene. Its Noma-trained head chef, James Cross, explores the 'food of the north', and his multicourse tasting menus are chock-full of locally sou…