The area

Set in the southern end of the Patterdale valley in the heart of the Lake District, all our properties are ideally situated for exploring the area by foot or by car.

The unspoilt village Hartsop has great charm, built on the industries of mining and farming, Hartsop has many listed buildings and a fascinating history. Today it is still a working farming community with a National Trust farm at the centre of the hamlet.

The peaceful hamlet of Deepdale is really just a scattering of houses half-way between Hartsop and Patterdale. Deepdale is actually the name of a breathtakingly beautiful valley that runs from outside the cottage for 2 miles before steeply ascending the northern face of Fairfield. It has a burbling beck running the length, an ancient stone bridge and many lovely picnic spots.

There are so many great walks from the door both level and lofty it is easy to see why Wainwright wrote his first two books on this area. Tackle Helvellyn via the vertiginous Striding Edge or follow in the footsteps of the Romans along the High Street ridge. For a less strenuous day out enjoy a cruise on Ullswater, visit nearby historic houses such as Blackwell, Dove Cottage, Townend House and Dalemain, or simply indulge in a little shopping therapy in Ambleside, just 7 miles away.

There are many great places to eat within striking distance including one of the best restaurants in the country, L’Enclume in Cartmel which has two Michelin stars. Nearby, Ambleside has a growing become quite a foody town with half a dozen good restaurants, many with a focus on local sourcing and even two excellent vegetarian eateries. And after a brisk day on the fells, there’s no better place to relax than in one of the Lake District’s numerous pubs and inns. Many have a history stretching back centuries and are full of character, with stout beams, flagstone floors and crackling log fires. There’s a growing focus on food and drink, too: craft ales, beer festivals and microbreweries abound, and many places serve food that’s closer to fine dining than pub grub. We have loads of recommendations in the cottage and can provide information in advance of your stay so you are able to book in advance.

Some of our favourite places to visit within half an hour

  • Aira Force on Ullswater – a beautiful walk around a landscaped waterfall.
  • Ullswater Steamers – just cruise on the Lake or walk part of the Ullswater Way and catch the boat home.
  • Blackwell, The Arts and Crafts House, near Bowness. Lovely exhibitions, great café and a drawing room to die for!
  • Townend House, Troutbeck. A simply glorious old Lakeland farmhouse owned by the National Trust.
  • The Lakeland Horticultural Society Gardens at Holehird, near Windermere. Lovingly tended by volunteers – for anyone with a hint of green on their fingers, this is a must.
  • The Windermere Jetty Museum – Stories of boats and steam in an award winning contemporary building. The cafe must have the best views in The Lakes.

….and further afield, but worth the trip

  • Leven’s Hall – the topiary gardens are the oldest in the world – you are transported back to tudor times (tights and lute optional!)
  • Steam Yacht Gondola on Coniston and a visit to Ruskins’ House at Brantwood.
  • The Ruskin Museum, Coniston – a really engaging local history museum with information on Ruskin (and some of his glorious paintings), Donald Campbell and a good general history of Lakeland.
  • Hill Top and Beatrix Potter Gallery near Hawkshead

Local Activity providers

There are too numerous walking recommendation to list here, but we can help advise you when you arrive – there a plentiful maps and books in all cottages. If you fancy booking an organised activity then we have had positive feedback for the following:

Dining Recommendations

An up to date, and more extensive restaurant guide is in each cottage….however the following are some of our favourites and may need booking prior to your stay. Always ask us as many of the top places offer excellent value lunch deals.

  • L’Enclume Cartmel – 2 Michelin stars. Amazing.
  • Lake Road Kitchen, Ambleside  – Sally and James’ exquisite restaurant is small but perfectly formed. Scandinavian inspired, delicately balanced tasting menu never fails to delight.
  • The Yan, Broadrayne, Grasmere – Great little bistro with wholesome loally sourced food and super staff.
  • Gilpin, Windermere – now has two restaurants and a Michelin star. Hirishi is a favourite. Super special Sunday lunch!
  • The Punchbowl, Crosthwaite – great gastropub.
  • Zeffirellis, Ambleside – vegetarian pizzeria and restaurant. Excellent value for families with combined “meal deal”cinema ticket. Also has live music in its Jazz bar most Friday and Saturday nights
  • Heft, High Newton (off A590 at bottom of Windermere) – Kevin and Nicola Tickle’s excellent new fine dining pub. Tasting menus in the evening, Sunday lunches and great bar snacks (the sausage rolls are legendary).
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