UK National Parks Guide: The Lake District

Located in northwestern England, the Lake District serves as country’s largest national park.

It covers just less than 888 square miles and is bordered on one side by the Irish Sea. Shaped by glaciers during the Ice Age, the region is characterized by fells (moor-covered hills) and mountains that rise up close to 3,000 feet, punctuated by verdant valleys filled with long, winding lakes. It’s home to Scafell Pike–its highest mountain and one of the three peaks in the national three-peaks challenge, Wastwater–its deepest lake, and thriving communities like Keswick and Bowness-on-Windermere.

The Lake District serves as country’s largest national park.

While this land has supported continuous human settlement since the last Ice Age, it’s the agro-pastoral agriculture–think hardy flocks of sheep–that has given the Lake District its distinctive character. All the farmhouses and field walls are built from local stone and slate, using a traditional technique that still persists today. These farm buildings and field walls merge into the spectacular natural landscape in both tone and color, reflecting their rugged yet functional character.

The Lake District’s fells, valleys, and lakes form a symbiotic relationship with this continued agricultural practice and create a culture-rich landscape of great beauty that recently earned the area an UNESCO World Heritage Site designation.

RELATED: UK National Parks Guide

Our favorite way to explore the Lake District? Hiking of course. The Lake District National Park features walks for every ability, from ambles around lakes to high ridge walks, with a bit of scrambling to keep things interesting.

Our favorite way to explore the Lake District? Hiking of course.

The Lake District is not exempt to the UK’s fickle weather, however. You could have snow or rain one minute, soaring temperatures and sunshine the next, then back to frost at night. But all that precipitation brings a wondrous display of wildflowers–most notably the bluebell–in spring and early summer.

Whether you are in the mood for a day hike, full walking holidays, or accessible walks suitable for everyone, you can find what you need on the national park website.

SEE ALSO: UK National Parks Guide: Wales

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