The Lake District
Half - term family fun
The Lake District
Half-term family fun
Half-term family fun in Allerdale
The Lake District in Allerdale is the backdrop for fun and enjoyment during half-term. Add in our wonderful Solway Coast, Hadrian’s Wall World Heritage Site and our lovely towns and villages, there is almost unlimited scope for exciting and pleasing things to do. The interactive map below has lots of ideas for more inspiration and check out these amazing Virtual Reality videos.
Most of our businesses including cafes, restaurants, accommodation providers and attractions are now open and are operating with enhanced safety measures in place. Our advice is to check individual websites for full details and book in advance wherever possible.
We expect everyone who visits or lives in Allerdale to continue to observe social distancing, whether they have travelled from a ‘lockdown’ area or otherwise. Covid-19 has not gone away, but if we all continue to social distance, wash our hands and wear face coverings, everyone can play a part in helping protect our local communities.
Cycling off -road
Cycling off road is great for families. Gently spin along Silloth’s cobbled main street (part of Hadrian’s Cycleway) for a closer look at the town’s small working harbour and west beach, then on its broad promenade with lovely views across the Solway Firth to Scotland. Reach Skinburness village on the level road and then walk on the footpath around the small finger of land called Grune to see tidal marshes, creeks, sand and mud banks; all a haven for wild flowers and wading birds. You can download the route and others here.
If you don’t have bikes with you, Solway Cycle Hire in Allonby can help. From Allonby, an off-road stretch of Hadrian’s wall Cycleway takes you to Maryport full of maritime and Roman history. Keswick Bikes in the heart of the Lake District has bike and ebike hire. Check out their recommended routes on their website. We have lots of other Strava road cycling route inspiration here.
If you are looking for adrenaline highs or quiet places to appreciate the beauty of nature, Whinlatter Forest Park is an excellent place to start. England’s only mountain forest centre has an exciting range of mountain bike routes. Bring your own our hire a bike or e-bike from Cyclewise on site. If you are a walker, the waymarked trails guide you to some of the best viewpoints in the district as well as the opportunity to spot the forest’s wildlife from deer to badgers and foxes to red squirrels. Kids’s will love the Squirrel’s Scurry Trail with the lovely red squirrel to look out for and spot. Use the clues on the Tracks Trail Children’s Trail to see how many animal tracks you can identify on the way markers along the route.
There is so much to do at Honister. You can head deep inside one of the Lake District Wainwright fells – Fleetwith Pike and see the massive caverns which are the result of generations of mining for the unique, green coloured Butteremre slate. Don’t miss the chance to see how lumps of slate are transformed by hand into roofing slates using techniques unchanged for hundreds of years.
The metal way or Via Ferrata Classic at Honister winds it way up the fell side of Fleetwith Pike giving you amazing panoramic views. It’s safe as you are attached to metal ladders and wire ropes embedded in the rock with experienced instructors providing help and encouragement. It’s suitable for most ages and abilities while Via Ferrata Extreme is more difficult and requires a reasonable level of fitness.
Release the inner Tarzan in yourself with Go Ape’s Treetop Challenge. It’s a thrilling mix of zip wires, rope walkways and rope swings, allowing you to experience the thrill of life off the ground among the canopy of Whinlatter Forest. It’s one of a number of Go Ape experiences including exploring the forest on a Segway, the two wheeled self balancing personal transport.
Attractive indoor and attractions
If you are looking for indoor attractions, we have a fine roster to choose from. The Lake District Coast Aquarium on the harbour side in attractive Maryport, has a wide range of local species to discover. Aquarists are on hand to share their love and knowledge of the fish in their care. Kids will love to see the native sharks and rays as well as the daily feeding sessions. The Harboursiede Cafe in the Aquarium is a good lunch choice and excess energy can be run off in the maritime themed adventure play park outside.
The anti gravity room at Puzzling Place in Keswick, defies logic or does it? Walk in and you appear to be standing at a very odd angle. Can it be true – it’s worth visiting for this alone. But there is lots more to bamboozle and intrigue. The eerie holograms grab your attention and the perspective room makes you appear reduced in size or of giant proportions.
The Derwent Pencil Museum is home to one of the world’s biggest pencil as well as a fine display of unusual and unique pencils. Spies have used them in their secret work, sculptures have been made of of them and special ones have produced for state occasions such as the Queen’s Silver Jubilee. An excellent shop selling all types of pencil is found in the museum as a well as a cafe.
Gardens to explore
Mirehouse and in particular, its grounds and gardens are a natural adventure play space for kids and the young at heart. There are four play areas to enjoy: the Forest Hazard Course – a mini assault course style adventure for older children, the Steeplechase with lots of gentle jumps, the Forest Castle – who will be king of the castle?, and Squirrel Island with gentle swings and shallow paddling. Don’t forget to see the house too famous for its extensive, Lake District literary connections. the Old Sawmill tearoom across the road from Mirehouse is the perfect place for refreshments.
Great escape room
If you fancy a challenge then try out Lakes Escapes in Workington, which has five, fabulous, live escape rooms. It’s brilliant, safe fun for up to 6 people. Other rooms to whet your appetite are casino Heist, Baker Street, Quest for the Throne and Who Stole Christmas.
Keswick Museum and Art Gallery is an enchanting local museum that is wheelchair and buggy friendly as well as welcoming assistance dogs. It’s extensive collections has lots for kids to discover including pre – historic stone axes, fossils and minerals, lakes poets’ documents – of interest for those studying Eng Lit, the history of mountaineering and a good natural history collection including the ‘700 year old cat’!
Near Keswick, Threlkeld Quarry and Mining Museum shows what life was like for local miners in the past. You can explore with a mine guide in a recreated mine, pan for minerals and ride of an old steam train. The Mining Room and Quarry Room have lots of specimens and exhibits bringing the past to life.
Fells and lakes
There’s space for you in Allerdale. Whether that’s adventure, gentle walks, culture and heritage, exploring new places or just relaxing. You’ll find Derwentwater, Bassenthwaite, Buttermere, Crummock Water, Loweswater and Thirlmere here. Mighty fells are in abundance too including Skiddaw, Helvellyn, Catbells and Dale Head.
Timeless villages fit perfectly into the landscape. Discover Caldbeck, Heswket Newmarket and Ireby in the northren fells, Lorton, Bassenthwaite and Portinscale are close to Keswick. Don’t forget the charming town of Cockermouth on the edge of the park.
Discover the real character of the Lakes at our unique festivals. Don’t miss the Keswick Mountain Festival held every May. Glorious food and drink takes centre stage at Taste Cockermouth every September and December. Books and the spoken word are celebrated at Words by the Water in Keswick each March.
Food and drink
Food and drink is at the heart of Lake District life. The increase in the use of local , seasonal ingredients is there for you to see and enjoy when you eat out. It’s really evident in the craft ales produced by artisan brewers. Visit the Castle Brewery in Cockermouth where Jennings have been brewing fine ales since Queen Victoria’s time. The acclaimed Lake District Distillery at Bassenthwaite is not to be missed.
Allerdale, the capital of doing, is open for your next amazing experience. High energy, low energy or total relaxation. We have something new for you. High adrenaline mountain experiences, yes, unique spa treatments in the heart of the UK’s most beautiful national park, tick, culture and heritage to inspire, definitely, joyous fun with the kids, it’s a yes too. Add in the amazing range of accommodation and food and we have everything in place ready for you.