Family activities in the lake district

Things to do for families and children

Have fun in your National Park!

The Lake District is jam-packed with amazing adventures for tots to teenagers. We've many free or low-cost events, from learning circus skills to bushcraft survival, archery to canoeing, pond dipping to our mini-beast safari! Take a look at our events calendar and check out the list of family-friendly events.

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Brockhole on Windermere

Enjoy the famous adventure playground, paddle in the lake, and explore the fabulous Mawson designed gardens with good pushchair and wheelchair access. Hire a boat on the lake, with motor boats, rowing boats, kayaks and paddle boards for hire.

Challenge yourself with Crazi Bugz driving, archery, laser clay or inside caving.

Gift shop, cafe, and The Gaddum restaurant on site. Free admission. Pay and display car park.

Plan your trip to Brockhole
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Coniston Boating Centre

Take the whole family out onto Coniston Water! Let our electric motor boats take the strain or take the helm of a traditional wooden rowing boat. Both take upto 6 passengers, and well behaved dogs are welcome on board too.

Try out sit on top kayaks, open Canadian canoes or have fun splashing about on paddle boards. Our friendly team will give you all the help you need.

Book your boat on Coniston
Brave the Cave

Brave the Cave

Dive into the darkness...twisting and turning as you explore Brockhole, the Lake District Visitor Centre’s exciting new indoor attraction Brave the Cave!

Find out more
Map showing an easy access walk in the Lake District

Child and buggy-friendly walks

We have more than 40 laidback Miles Without Stiles easy access walking routes, perfect for little legs and buggies. Here's just a few of our family favourites:

  • 4. Scout Scar near Kendal - see for miles and miles from the sea to the mountains!
  • 6. Windermere's Western Shore - Get the ferry from bustling Bowness to this quiet off-road track along the water, perfect for bikes, buggies and woodland exploring!
  • 11. Elterwater to Skelwith Bridge in the Langdales - waterfalls, woods and refreshments at either end of the walk.
  • 13. Tarn Hows near Coniston - a circular walk round a beautiful tarn with views of mountains beyond and lots of woods to play in.
  • 36. Friar's Crag, Keswick - a circular route alongside Derwentwater with amazing views of the central mountains, lake shoreline and woods.

Rainy days? Indoor family attractions in the Lake District:

  • Brockhole on Windermere

    Brave the Cave for intrepid indoor cavers, the Cubby Hole soft play for small tots, an undercover picnic area and indoor exhibits.

  • Take a boat cruise

    Boat cruises on Windermere, Coniston, Derwentwater and Ullswater all have covered boats, many with refreshments and toilets on board. And any electric hire boats have covered cabins, to watch the rain splashing on the lake beside you!
  • Keswick Climbing Wall

    Kids climbing the walls? Let them scale a proper climbing wall! Free parking and cafe on site.
  • Lakes Aquarium

    Go on a journey of discovery! Set on the lakeshore, this award winning attraction has the UK's largest collection of freshwater fish.
  • Lakeside and Haverthwaite Railway

    Hard working steam locomotives travel three and half miles into the Leven Valley. Take a return journey or combine your trip with a lake cruise or a visit to the Aquarium of the Lakes.
  • World of Beatrix Potter

    All of Beatrix Potter's tales are brought to life in three dimensions. An indoor re-creation of the Lakeland countryside, complete with sights, sounds and even smells.
  • Wray Castle

    Families can explore the activity rooms inside the castle, where there’s plenty of space for creative play. With a natural playground in the grounds and a path to spacious grassy area on the lakeshore, its a great for the whole family whatever the weather.

The journey's half the fun!

Have a great day out by bike, open-air bus or boat. Please take a look at public transport page.

Cumbria County Council bus timetables (opens in new window) have some good suggestions. The #555 and #599 are particularly scenic!

Call of nature

Toilet locations and baby change facilities are listed on our Public toilets page. Many are located near our car parks.

Weather

To find out the current conditions, check out our Webcams page or for a forecast please look at Weatherline (opens in new window)

Heroes and heroines

Beatrix Potter's Squirrel Nutkin sailed on Derwentwater and Johnny Townmouse lived in Hawkshead. The Greendale of Postman Pat is here. If you time it right, you might be able to meet Thomas the Tank Engine at Ravenglass Railway

For Swallows and Amazons fans, the list goes on forever! Hike up Kanchenjunga himself - the Old Man of Coniston, take a look at Wild Cat Island, also known as Peel Island by taking a cruise or hiring a boat from Coniston Boating Centre. You might also want to check out the Islands of Windermere...

Need holiday accommodation?

Cottage near Coniston - copyright Charlie Hedley

Booking here, supports here

We've cosy holiday cottages, quirky boutique hotels, friendly bed and breakfasts and luxury hotels.

Our commission helps keep the National Park special: Browse and book Lake District accommodation online