Road from Dockray towards Ullswater copyright Paul Reynolds

Travel around Ullswater

Local buses

Bus service 508 runs from Penrith Station to Pooley Bridge, Aira Force, Glenridding and Patterdale all year round. In summer it continues over Kirkstone Pass to Windermere. Bus service 208 provides a direct link from Keswick to Ullswater on summer Saturdays. Timetables can be found in Stagecoach's Lakes Connection.

Nearest train

The nearest train station to Ullswater is Penrith. You can get there using the buses listed above.

How far is Penrith?

From Pooley Bridge it is six miles to Penrith. From Glenridding it is 13 miles.

Lake 'Steamers'

Ullswater 'Steamers' operate all year apart from 24 and 25 December, weather permitting. Check out Ullswater Steamers website

Public transport in the Lake District


The West Coast mainline runs to the east of the Lake District, connecting Oxenholme, Penrith and Carlisle with London and Glasgow. A direct train runs from Manchester to Windermere. Local trains call at Kendal, Staveley and Windermere. There is also a route following the Cumbrian coastline.


Towns and villages such as Ambleside, Windermere, Coniston and Keswick are linked by bus, with extra services in the summer. Find out more at: GoLakes Travel - buses (opens in new window)

Minibus tours and bus explorer tickets

There are many companies offering you the chance to sit back and watch the scenery. Take a look at our Minibus tours and bus explorer tickets page.

Steamers and launch trips

Taking a cruise is a great way to experience the beautiful Lake District views. Our on the water section has more details.

Public transport - useful links

All links open in new window.

By car

Map of the UK showing where the Lake District National Park is located

The average journey time from London and the south east is about five hours. It takes about one and half hour from Manchester and two hours from York.

The M6 runs to the east of the Lake District National Park:

  • Take Junction 36 and then A590 for the southern end of the Lake District
  • Take Junction 40 and the A66 or A592 for the northern end of the Lake District

If you're using satellite navigation, check out our Postcodes for Sat Nav page.

Even A roads can be quite twisting so allow extra time for your journey and for finding a space in Car parks in high season. Example journey times are:

  • Kendal to Keswick: one hour
  • Windermere to Keswick: 40 minutes
  • Kendal to Wasdale: one and a half hours

Hardknott Pass and Wrynose Pass between Eskdale and the Langdales have gradients of 1 in 3 and Honister Pass between Borrowdale and Buttermere is 1 in 4, making them some of the steepest roads in England!

Travelling by car - useful links

All links open in new window unless otherwise stated:

Need more help? Pop in!

Ullswater Information Centre in Glenridding

This page is brought to you by the staff of Ullswater Information Centre.

We can help you with booking accommodation, tickets or attractions. We are next to the car park in Glenridding - do pop in and take a look around Ullswater Information Centre.