Spring is one of the very best times of year to visit the Lake District, have a holiday or even a short break.
Here are just some of the things you can be looking forward to on a visit to the area.
Enjoying the daffodil season
One of the first signs of spring, this vibrant, pleasing flower can be seen throughout the Lakes.
In the early 1800s, poet William Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy walked amongst the wild daffodils at Glencoyne, alongside Ullswater, and it was this experience which is said to have inspired one of his best-known poems, ‘I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud’. You can still take a stroll in the same spot today.
Catching the first of the year’s festivals with the annual Damson Day celebrations
The picturesque Lyth Valley in the southern Lake District is best known for its annual autumn harvest of damsons. This distinctive, dark blue fruit is used in a number of locally produced foods, drinks and preserves, which you can look out for in local food shops. The arrival of the damson blossom each spring is celebrated at the valley’s annual Damson Day, and in 2018 the event will take place on Saturday 14th April http://www.lythdamsons.org.uk/
Taking a bluebell walk
As April turns to May, the iconic bluebell makes its appearance in woodlands across the Lakes. Some spectacular ways to see them include on a walk to Loughrigg Terrace above Grasmere, whilst exploring the 77 acres of grounds and woodland at Muncaster Castle in the south west of the Lake District (entry fee applies), and on a walk from Buttermere to Rannerdale in the northern Lakes.
Buttermere to Rannerdale walk – Click here
Exploring the Lake District’s spring gardens
The Lake District has the perfect growing conditions for colourful spring favourites such as camellias, rhododendrons and azaleas, meaning that many of the area’s gardens are at their best at this time of year.
The gardens at Holker Hall situated near Cark in Cartmel, boast a lovely display of woodland rhododendrons, formal areas brimming with tulips, and historic trees laden with blossom.
Muncaster Castle is also home to what was once one of Europe’s largest collections of rhododendrons, created by the great grandfather of the current owner to take advantage of its acid soil and perfectly formed microclimate.
And if you’re visiting the Central Lakes, the National Trust’s Stagshaw Garden, near Ambleside, is a natural woodland garden which was created by a former National Trust land agent. There’s no entry fee, however parking is very limited, so you may prefer to incorporate your visit with a walk from nearby Waterhead.
Visiting the summer attractions as they open for the season
While many visitor attractions remain open throughout the year, some of the more historic ones close for the winter, meaning that from spring onwards there’s an even greater choice of things to see and do. One such addition is the National Trust’s Steam Yacht Gondola, which takes to Coniston Water from late March, and provides a unique Victorian cruise experience. You could also stop at the Brantwood jetty to explore John Ruskin’s former home, where the grounds and gardens have incredible views and lots of spring colour, and rejoin Gondola later in the day.
As the evenings get lighter, and the leaves burst into life on the trees, there really is no better time to visit the Lake District. However you choose to enjoy the Lakes this spring, wishing you a wonderful time!
This post was created for Holiday Cottages Cumbria by local writer Janine John, who blogs about the Lake District – Lake District Gems.
For places to stay near Holker Hall, Ullswater and Coniston, take a look at our lovely range of cottages here – https://www.holidaycottagescumbria.com/our-cottages/