Friday, August 19, 2011

The Lakes

So it's Friday, and a week since I told you I was going to The Lakes. Soz guys.

But! I went and it was great. The Lake District, as you might expect, has a lot of lakes in it, as well as a lot of hills. So our activities mostly included walking around little towns at the base of the hills and walking up the big hills, and looking at the lakes. The area is rather touristy, with the feel of a region whose main industries (slate quarrying, mining, wool/textile production) have given way to leisure pursuits and the people who visit for them. So the towns are full of touristy shops and tearooms, and B&Bs line the roads with lots of places to rent boats or go on adventure tours.

Also in the Lake District are the homes of famous people. So Wordsworth's family home is there, as is Beatrix Potter's home. We went to see the latter, and saw the garden that inspired her to write about Peter Rabbit, but didn't go into her home. It's a National Trust site and apparently so popular that you have to have a timed ticket! Here's some photos of her beautiful home though.

One of the regional specialities of the Lake District is something called Kendal mint cake. It seems like the Marmite of Cumbria in that everyone either loved it or hated it but insisted I try it. I went for the chocolate covered version (it also comes in white and brown sugar versions).

Basically, it's like a York Peppermint Patty but with a more granular filling rather than a creamy minty filling. People take it up the mountains for energy and endurance fuel. I wouldn't personally keep a stack of it in my cupboard, but it was interesting to try for sure.

And beyond that, we enjoyed some good food, good wine, and the company of some good friends. All in all, a lovely weekend.

Oh! And we also did our 12 mile run along the undulating main road. It was hard. But we did it. And then walked up a mountain the next day which possibly was not smart as I have been enduring some mighty shin splints. Note to self for next time.

The Lake District:
Virgin Trains run regularly to Oxenholme and you can transfer there to a mini-train that takes you up to Windermere (the largest of the lakes and a good base for exploring the region). There are tons of B&Bs in walking distance of the train station but to explore the area and see some of the further sites a hire car is advised. Weather is changeable, so pack for everything!


  1. You guys definitely climbed higher than we did. We got most of the way up a mountain (well, Jon says it was a big hill) and then I died. And then we climbed down and had hot chocolate. We deserved it. Don't look at me like that! We worked freaking hard for those calories. Humph.

  2. I have been wanting to go to the Lake District for years now. I have a friend who offered to drive because I am too chicken to try. I am so taking her up on the offer.

    And well done for getting the 12 miler done while on holiday!

  3. Betsy: it's not how high you climb, it's whether you enjoy the view (and the hot chocolate reward!)
    Melizza: definitely get up there, it's really beautiful and relaxing! You'll love it!