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Holidays in Ambleside

The best of the Cumbrian coastal landscapes

Ambleside countryside

Ambleside is a pretty, relaxed town which looks out across the shimmering waters of Lake Windermere. Dominated by traditional grey slate and stone buildings, it has a selection of pubs, cafes and shops where outdoor enthusiasts can be found restoring their energy levels before their next big adventure. Ambleside sits in the picturesque Cumbrian countryside, overlooking Windermere, England’s biggest lake. The lake itself is a haven for wildlife and popular for sailing, and swimming in the warmer summer months. It’s an excellent base from which to explore the Lake District and offers good food and entertainment for when the weather closes in.

The countryside around Ambleside is perfect for hiking. As you explore the woods and hills, you’ll discover evidence of a fascinating history as well as an abundance of nature. Just outside Ambleside are the remains of a fort which is thought to have been built under the rule of Hadrian.

Ambleside waterfront

The ruins are managed by the National Trust and are easily reached by foot from Ambleside.

A leisurely stroll from the town of Ambleside will lead you to Stock Ghyll Force, a dramatic 70ft waterfall which used to drive a series of watermills. The power of the waterfall can be admired from the safety of a viewing platform.

If you don’t mind getting wet and want to try one of the many water sports on offer in the Ambleside area, head for Low Wood Bay Watersports Centre, where you can try your hand at kayaking, fishing, sailing and more. The centre even offers wakeboarding lessons for beginners, so you could be skimming across the waters of the Lake District before you know it.

There’s plenty to explore in the centre of Ambleside including independent shops and restaurants, and Zeffirelli’s, a unique cinema with its own pizzeria and jazz club. For a pint of local ale in a laid-back, traditional pub, try the Royal Oak on Main Street.

There’s an impressive selection of restaurants in Ambleside, perhaps none more unique than The Old Stamp House, which is located in a former workplace of the Cumbrian poet, William Wordsworth.

“Ambleside is a pretty, relaxed town which looks out across the shimmering waters of Lake Windermere.“

It’s now an award-winning restaurant with a menu full of local produce including herbs and berries picked from the nearby fells. Stiles is another Ambleside favourite. It’s the perfect place to top up your energy levels after a day exploring. The burgers, milkshakes and full English breakfasts are particularly popular.

While you’re there

Windermere Lake Cruises

Embark on a wonderful journey along the glistening lakes in style.

Wray Castle

Wray Castle was built in 1840 for a retired surgeon and holds some fascinating stories.

The Armitt Museum and Library

The Armitt Museum and Library provides an excellent source of local history.

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