There are 16.4 million visitors to the Lake District every year and the area has the highest concentration of small breweries of anywhere in the UK.
With more people choosing staycations – 30% of us chose to stay in the UK for our holiday last year, with just 15% choosing to only holiday abroad – it can feel overwhelming finding the perfect places to enjoy your much-needed time off.
Craig Manor have compiled the best walking routes that include beer gardens in the Lake District. From gentle walks suitable for all, to more challenging day-long hikes. Each promises amazing views, fresh air and the reward of a perfect pint in one of the Lake Districts most well-loved beer gardens.
1Pub: Craig Manor, Windemere.
This stylish inn at the heart of Windermere is a popular choice for food and drinks. Family friendly and welcoming dogs in some areas, this is a perfect spot to start and finish a walk and enjoy delicious food.
Check out the camera symbols for the best places to stop and take some pics!
- Start at St Martin’s Place, Bowness.
- Follow the Lake Road uphill towards Windermere Village.
- Turn right up Helm Road or go a little further and stop off at Craig Manor for a bite to eat before continuing on your walk.
- Walk up Helm Road with the Angel Inn on your right and just beyond the Hydro Hotel there is a steep path to the left. This will take you to an amazing view point on Biskey Howe.
- Leave by the disabled track at the back of the viewpoint.
- Cross the road and then another with the sign Permitted Path Post Knott.
- Follow the carriageway, then drop back to the gate on to Post Knott and climb to the summit for more views. Here you can retrace your steps or turn left and descend through the field Brantfell and down to Bowness village.
2Pub: The Bridge, Buttermere.
Buttermere is one of the lesser known lakes but is also one of the most beautiful. Walks around the lake, stopping at The Bridge, are available all year except for April to June when nesting Sandpipers need to be undisturbed. The Bridge is always open, though, offering traditional pub grub with a fantastic view across the lake.
- Start at the Bridge Hotel and take the left-hand lane, bearing left onto the lane beside the Fish Inn. Turn left and go through the gate before bearing right through another gate. At the corner of the National Trust field beside Buttermere, pass through another gate.
- Turn right and follow the path along the field edge to the bridge. Cross and bear left, to another bridge and gate. Go through and bear left to follow the lake shore. Continue along the lake shore.
- At the end of the lake, in just over 1.2 miles, turn left through the gate, crossing Peggy’s Bridge, and into the lane up to Gatesgarth Farm.
- Keep left through the yard, separated by a fence, up to the road. At the road turn left, up a slight incline, following the road as it goes to the right. Head down to the lake shore, where a rough path follows the shoreline, leading you back into the village.
3Pub: The Crown Inn, Pooley Bridge.
Owned by Thwaites Brewery which was created in the early 1800s, this Inn offers one of the most impressive views in the Lake District. Serving food all day, it is the perfect place to stop off when exploring the surrounding area.
- Start at Pooley Bridge and take the Ullswater Way through woodland and fields to Maiden Castle.
- Continue on the way to Bennethead and then to the beautifully situated Watermillock Church.
- Before leaving the road to join a track through the quiet woods of Swinburn Park. Leaving the woods continue along the path shouldering Gowbarrow, where the views open to the whole of Ullswater and the rising mountains ahead. Take a rest on Memorial Seat and enjoy the view.
- Continue on the path to reach Aira Force.
4Pub: The Britannia Inn, Elterwater.
This Inn in the centre of the Lake District offers rustic dining with fantastic views. As well as the impressive views from the beer garden, the Britannia also has an annual beer festival and offers alfresco dining all day.
- Start at the Britannia Inn and follow the Cumbria Way at a left turn just before the bridge over the river.
- Then follow the path south with the river on the right and fields on the left. Enter Rob Rash Woods.
- Follow the path, initially across an open field with the River Brathay on the right, then through a gate into woods.
- Skelwith Force soon appears on the right, return to the main path to the small village of Skelwith Bridge where there is a café and a shop. Next cross the A593, the busy main road coming in from the Ambleside direction, and walk up Foul Step which leads to Grasmere. After the gradient levels out, take a right turn where the road branches and follow a path to the left past houses and along the public bridleway ahead as Loughrigg Tarn comes into view.
- Beyond the tarn, the bridleway joins up with a secondary road at a T junction. Turn right here and then take the next path on the left which winds its way up through woodland to Langdale Youth Hostel at High Close. Beyond the hostel, follow the secondary road coming in from Grasmere to the north east past Walthwaite Bottom and back down the hill to the village.
5Pub: The Outgate Inn, Ambleside.
This 18th century inn has sold beer since the 1840’s. It is still popular with locals as well as visitors for walking, cycling and climbing in the area. In winter the pub offers blazing fires and in the summer, there is an impressive beer garden.
- From the Outgate Inn walk out of the village towards Ambleside.
- Take the bridleway into the woods and enjoy the view of Latterbarrow.
- Walk through Blelham Tarn toward Low Wray/Wray Castle.
- Continue for 1 mile.
- After the sign for Wray Campsite, you will reach the castle. Enjoy beautiful Wray Castle which is owned by the National Trust.
- Out of the castle head for steps on the left leading down to a path, follow this to a junction.
- Turn left for Wray Boat House and Lakeshore.
- At the lakeshore turn right and
- follow the shore through woods and pasture.
- At the junction turn right.
- Follow for 300 yds then turn left (12) after 100 yds.