Lake Ullswater is the second largest lake in England at 7.5miles long by ¾ mile wide, located in the north east corner of the Lake District national park and the easiest lake to reach, being a 10 minute drive from the M6.
It is easy to see why Lake Ullswater is so popular, surrounded by stunning mountain scenery with lake vistas from the summits and the sparkling water appealing to watersport enthusiasts; canoes, paddle boards, windsurfers and yachts are a daily sight on the lake.
The lake has a number of villages and hamlets dotting its shore line, the best known is Pooley Bridge at the north eastern tip of the lake and Watermillock and Glenridding, along the western shore line with Howtown on the eastern shore and Patterdale to the south. The villages have a number of shops, galleries and village Inns serving home cooked food and local ales. Visitors walking the circular, 20 mile, Ullswater Way route regularly stop off at one of the inns for refreshments or a bite to eat.
The Ullswater Steamers, with 3 ports on the lake, take visitors on a relaxing scenic trip down the lake, jump off at Pooley Bridge, Glenridding or Howtown to explore a different part of the lake before climbing back on board to finish the journey.
No visit to Ullswater is complete without visiting Aira Force, a magnificent waterfall tumbling 65 feet to the pools at the bottom before ending its journey in Ullswater, the Aira Force park with woodland is home to the red squirrels and has walks through the woodland to the pools at the top of Aira Beck, dip your toes into the cooling water on sunny days before heading back to the tea room to enjoy a ‘cuppa’ with a view over the lake.
There are a number of marinas around the lake where you can hire a rowing boat or a yacht and explore the lake at leisure or for the less experienced sailor you can learn to sail or take lessons to improve your technique, also look out for one of the many regattas throughout the year, spectating can be just as much fun.
If the hills are calling there are a number of Wainwrights for you to tick off your list including Little Mell Fell, Great Mell Fell, Gowbarrow Fell, Hartsop, Nab Scar, Great Dodd to name just a small few. The fells, both on the ascent and decent offer stunning views over the Lakeland fells to Ullswater, but in most cases the best view is from the summit looking down into the Ullswater valley and lake.
There are a number of tourist attractions around Ullswater including Rheged, home to shops, art galleries, cafes, cinema and soft play and pottery area for children. Dalemain House and gardens is worth a visit, look out for the events hosted throughout the year. Lowther Castle and Gardens is a great day out for young and old, explore the gardens with their different areas, children can adventure on the play fort with turrets and slides followed by refreshments in the café. Rookin House equestrian and adventure centre is perfect for the adrenaline seeker with a range of activities from pony trekking to quad bike adventures and archery lessons. And for the more sedate activity try Lakeland Llama Treks, there is something therapeutic about wandering the countryside with a Llama by your side.
In summary, Ullswater is the perfect holiday base with walks from the door, water sports in abundance, activities for young and old alike and pubs and restaurants to cater for every budget and taste.
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