Best walks in the Lake District

Whether you’re after a hard hike or steady stroll amongst some breathtaking landscapes, we’ve got you covered.

Lake District

by Bryony Firth-bernard |

The Lake District is one of Britain’s most treasured national parks. It’s the largest national park, consisting of 912 beautiful square miles of high mountains, lakes, rivers and coastline and each year almost 16 million people come to visit.

It’s a hotspot for staycations for its breathtaking scenery and activities, including cycling, water-sports and, of course, one of the most popular, walking. In the Lake District you really are spoilt for choice with miles of beautiful walking routes, from easy family strolls to harder mountain hikes, so whether you’re a hardcore hiker or a leisurely walker there’s definitely something for everyone.

Keen to tie up your walking boots and get going? Then read on for our roundup of best walks in the Lake District.

Always remember, before setting off on your walk to check the route beforehand. It’s also handy to take plenty of water, a torch, compass and a map in case you get lost. Make sure your phone is fully charged too and that you’re wearing enough layers. If you do get lost, call 999 and ask to be put through to mountain rescue (you do not need signal for this).

Tarn Hows Circular Walk, Cumbria

Tarn Hows Lake District walk

This is one of the region's classic routes around the beautiful, mossy Tarn Hows lake and is great for all abilities. It’s one of the shorter walks (3km) and takes about an hour to complete. No matter the season, you’ll get splendid views of the lake and Lakeland Fells. It’s also dog-friendly too. Cumbrian Helen Skelton is also a huge fan of this walk with her dogs.

Old Man Coniston, Cumbria

Old Man Coniston walk in Lake District

Got a little more ‘oomph’ in you? Then Old Man Coniston mountain is the walk to give a go. It’s the highest point of the historic county of Lancashire and at just over 792m it will take you around 2 to 3 hours to climb, so you’re looking at a maximum of 6 hours in total. You can expect breathtaking views from the mountaintop, but be prepared for the walk to get harder the further up you get.

Hallin Fell, Cumbria

Hallin Fell in Lake District

Another good walk for beginners as the route is very simple. You can park your car opposite St Peter’s Church and then you can follow the wide grassy path that will take you to the top of the fell. There’s the odd wooden bench dotted around on the walk up, so you can sit back and take in the view and it only takes around an hour to complete the whole route.

Blea Tarn trail , Cumbria

Blea Tarn trail in Lake District

If you’re looking to get into the fells safely, then the Blea Tarn trail does just that. Taking around one to two hours to complete, you’ll get fantastic views of Lingmoor and Pike of Blisco and other surrounding Langdale fells. The stone paths consist of small up and down gradients, so it’s a suitable walk for all abilities. If the weather is bad though, boosts are a must!

Loweswater, Cumbria

Loweswater, Cumbria

This circular footpath walk around the peaceful lake promises stunning views, tranquility and can be completed in a couple of hours. It’s a mixture of lake and woodland, as it follows the lake shore and makes its way through Holme Wood. Inside the wood, which is home to red squirrels and deer, there’s also the waterfall, Holme Force, which is often bypassed by many, because they can’t see it from the lakeside path.

Catbells, Cumbria

Catbells walk in Lake District

This is a popular walk as it’s near the market-town of Keswick and promises

sensational panoramic views over Keswick, Derwent Water and Borrowdale. There’s a few different routes you can do, but for a moderate walk we recommend this one, which takes three hours, including a few stops along the way.

Skiddaw Circuit

Skiddaw walk in Lake District

Skiddaw is definitely what you’d call a ‘nice mountain’, as it’s smooth and its slopes are largely crag-free. There’s lots of routes available to take, but the most popular is via the Jenkin Hill path, which takes you in a straight line to the summit, where you’ll get tremendous views of Bassenthwaite Lake. You’re looking at a total walking time of six to seven hours, so keep this walk for a good weather day.

Buttermere, Cumbria

Buttermere in the Lake District

This lake walk is relatively easy as it only takes three hours to complete and it’s a great one for families and those with limited mobility. Its picturesque surroundings and tranquil waters makes it a popular spot with photographers and will take you around three hours to complete.

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