Attractions in Cumbria and the Lake District

Creative Tourist

There are plenty of attractions in Cumbria and The Lake District, could there be a better place to spend a long weekend exploring? The fells and tarns that characterise the region’s unique landscape offer endless adventure, while its network of picturesque towns and villages provide the perfect way to while-away many a pleasant afternoon. It’s also home to Windermere, England’s largest and, arguably, finest lake.

What shouldn’t be overlooked, however, is just how much the area has to offer culturally, as well. Having inspired countless artists and writers over the centuries – from J.M.W Turner and William Wordsworth to Beatrix Potter and Kurt Schwitters, to name just a few – this rich and ongoing history is well celebrated throughout the Lake District’s many unusual galleriesmuseums and stately homes, which give those of nearby Manchester and Liverpool a run for their money.

Here, we’ve put together a handful of our absolute favourites.

  • 1. Blackwell, The Arts and Crafts House

    Courtesy of Lakeland Arts

    Blackwell, The Arts and Crafts House, Blackwell, The Arts & Crafts House, Bowness-on-Windermere, Cumbria, LA23 3JT - Visit now

    Unlike many of the historic houses that dot the English countryside, Blackwell embodies the entire opposite of rarefied stately-home-stuffiness.

  • 2. Abbot Hall Art Gallery

    Abbot Hall from across the River Kent. Photo © Tony West.

    Abbot Hall Art Gallery, Kendal, Cumbria, LA9 5AL - Visit now

    Built in 1759 as a private home, saved from dereliction and opened as an art gallery in 1962, the Grade I-listed Abbot Hall, Kendal is now one of the best centres for visual art in Cumbria.

  • 3. Museum of Lakeland Life & Industry

    Courtesy of Lakeland Arts

    Museum of Lakeland Life & Industry, Abbot Hall, Kendal, Cumbria, LA9 5AL - Visit now

    The Museum of Lakeland Life & Industry in Cumbria explores the region’s history through the unique customs and traditions of its past inhabitants.

  • 4. Windermere Jetty Museum of Boats, Steam and Stories

    Windermere Jetty Museum of Boats, Steam and Stories in Cumbria
    Courtesy of Lakeland Arts

    Windermere Jetty Museum of Boats, Steam and Stories, Rayrigg Road, Windermere,, Cumbria, LA231BN - Visit now

    Windermere Jetty Museum, on the banks of one of England’s largest and most picturesque lakes, is a new museum dedicated to the timeless pleasure of boating.

  • 5. Windermere Jetty Cafe

    Windermere Jetty Cafe

    Windermere Jetty Cafe, Rayrigg Road,, Windermere, Cumbria, LA23 1BN - Visit now

    Windermere Jetty Museum’s lakeshore café has outstanding food and incredible views over Windermere.

Visitor guides

Stately Homes in the North

The North of England is blessed with countless stunning stately homes, many dating back decades and even centuries. Here are some of the very best.

Walks in Penrith

Walks in Penrith

A selection of some of most rewarding and beautiful walks in Penrith, full of chances to catch open air and natural attraction.

Literary places in Cumbria

Literary places in Cumbria

If it was good enough for Wordsworth and Wainwright, then Cumbria surely has much to offer the literature lover who strayed off the M6. From Kendal in the south to Carlisle in the north, we sniff out the best bookish shenanigans.

Music Venues in Cumbria

When the sun goes down and you’ve had your fair share of Cumbria’s great outdoors, head to the area’s music venues to catch folk and jazz sessions, as well as regular performances by touring musicians. We recommend some of our favourites.

Theatres in Cumbria

Theatres in Cumbria

For striking performances in the truly beautiful setting of the Lake District – check out our pick of theatres in Cumbria.

Museums in Cumbria

Cumbria is studded with fantastic museums – read our picks of the best here.

Culture Guides

Food and Drink

Explore the best restaurants and bars in Manchester and the North as we head into autumn.

Cinema

David Bowie, Japanese classics and some early spooky screenings all feature in this month’s cinema guide.

Exhibitions

Welcome the autumnal season with all of the art goodness that it brings – there are so many brand new exhibitions to see!

Families

As we say bye to the summer holidays and begin to welcome in the cooler months, Manchester’s events and activities continue to bring joy and fun to families.

Kamila Shamsie. Photo Alex von Tunzelman

Literature

There are plenty of online readings and live launches as Manchester and the North welcomes some great writers with book festival season getting underway, and there are loads of new spoken word nights and open mics to check out…

Music

Autumn’s a fine old time for gigs in Manchester and the North. From otherworldly folk to life-affirming soul, here are our top picks for October onwards.

Theatre in Manchester and the North

Theatre

As the new theatre season gets ready to launch, we champion some of the star performances happening over the next few months.

Classical Music in Manchester and the North

We preview the standout classical music events and venues in Manchester and the north.

Tours and Activities

Every season change is an excuse to try something new, and when it comes to tours and activities, autumn delivers!

Things to do right now

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