View of Ullswater

Ten great reasons to walk the Ullswater Way

6 May 2016

A brand new long distance walk in the stunning Lake District has recently been opened. The Ullswater Way is a 20 mile circular route which takes walkers around the second largest lake in England.

If you really needed another excuse to visit this World Heritage nominated landscape, here are ten reasons we think this should be on everyone’s Lake District bucket list.

1. Spectacular mountain scenery

Family in UllswaterMainland Europe might have the Alps but our fabulous fells are instagram-tastic! The southern end of the lake will reward you with views of numerous Wainwrights, including Helvellyn, with its famous Striding Edge. Extend your trip and book onto a guided walk with one of our wonderful volunteer walk leaders. We’ve done all the hard work for you, so you can discover some of the best walking Britain has to offer without the need for a map.

2. See Wordsworth’s daffodils

William Wordsworth was one of England’s greatest poets. ‘Daffodils’, with its famous first line "I wandered lonely as a cloud…", is one of the best-known poems ever written. Wordsworth was inspired to write it after seeing the brilliant yellow flowers on a walk by Ullswater one stormy day in 1804. Recreate the moment on a spring visit. These iconic flowers bring a welcome splash of colour to the valley in March. Make the most of your visit by timing it with the new Ullswater Daff Fest. 2017 dates will be posted on our website as soon as they are confirmed.

3. Waterfalls at Aira Force

Ullswater Way signAt an impressive 65ft, Aira Force waterfall is a must-see natural attraction. It’s a perfect picnic stop on hot, summer days. Walk through cool woodland glades and drink in the atmosphere at this beautiful site, owned by our partners the National Trust

4. Immerse yourself in history

Ullswater is steeped in history, and archaeological features are dotted about the landscape. The earliest evidence for human activity in the area dates back to the Neolithic period and comprises a significant example of rock art at the head of the valley near Patterdale. More fascinating facts can be found in our World Heritage nomination document

5. Pooley Bridge is back!

The iconic Lake District village of Pooley Bridge at the northern end of the lake got its bridge back in March - albeit a temporary one. The original crossing was washed away in the December 2015 floods. Stop off for a delicious cream tea, sample real ale or dine on fine Cumbrian fare in this pretty village, popular with tourists.

6. Increase your wellbeing

Walking provides many health benefits for both body and mind. Add clear, fresh air, stunning views and miles of accessible paths, and exercise will be the last thing on your mind!

7. Experience peace and quiet

Ullswater’s tranquil eastern shore offers walkers serene and gentle paths and a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of busier Lake District tourist hotspots. The Ullswater Way Map and Guide will help you plan your hikes.

8. Great places to stay

In need of a rest? Ullswater boasts a whole range of accommodation. For a night under the stars choose from a number of campsites and caravan parks or for added luxury there are numerous B&B’s and hotels to choose from. There are also a number of self-catering cottages in the area and two YHAs near the lake, for those on a budget.

9. Need a rest? Boats on Ullswater

Nurse those blisters and take to the lake! Hop on board an Ullswater Steamer and drink in the views for an alternative view. Feeling adventurous? There’s a fantastic choice of water-based activities on offer, right around the lake. Visit our information centre in Glenridding to find out what’s on offer.

10. It’s nearer than you think!

It’s just five miles from the M6 and less than three and a half hours from London or two hours from Glasgow by train to Penrith (then catch the bus).

11. Because you can!

Did we say ten?!

For more information watch the Ullswater Way video. The route is well sign-posted but you can pick up a leaflet from our friendly and knowledgeable information centre staff in Glenridding. They will be happy to help plan your trip too.

For further inspiration visit for lots of useful local information to help you make the most of your trip to this special corner of the Lake District.

Author: Belinda Turnbull

Volunteer Led Activity Coordinator
Lake District National Park

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