5 Picturesque Lake District Cycle Routes

Graham Hadaway - Monday, July 13, 2015


With the sun shining off Lake Windermere and the tourist season in full swing, you may want to take a couple of hours away from the hustle and bustle to explore the Lake District in more detail.


Whether you plan to bring your bikes with you when you come to stay or you’re contemplating hiring them, below we’ve highlighted some of the most picturesque cycle routes on offer near to the Cranleigh.


Windermere’s Western Shore

Sandwiched between the lake’s edge and the Claife Heights area, this moderate route starts and finishes at Windermere railway station and covers quiet country lanes and well graded off road cycle tracks over its 14 miles.


Halfway along the route you’ll see the stark impressive grounds of Wray Castle, which is the perfect setting for a quick breather and drinks.

Time to complete: 2-3 hours


Troutbeck and Staveley

If you want to see more of what the lakes have to offer, away from our base in Bowness, then this moderate route allows you to take in great views of Lake Windermere.


Passing through the neighbouring villages of Troutbeck and Staveley, the route begins and ends at Bowness’s Ferry Nab car park and covers a distance of 19 miles, taking full advantage of quiet back lanes and cycle paths.


Time to complete: 2-4 hours


Claife Heights and Hawkshead

Revisiting Lake Windermere’s western shore once again, this route requires you to take the ferry from Bowness over to Claife Heights in order to explore the area.


The initial part of the 12 mile route is an off-road track which takes you to Wray Castle before the network of cycle and village lanes are opened up. This reveals the beautiful village of Hawkshead and, if Lake Windermere is too busy for your liking, you can check out the tranquil bliss of Esthwaite Water.

Time to complete: 2-4 hours

Lake Windermere

If you want to go the extra mile and ride a route that shows you everything Lake Windermere has to offer, this 22 mile trip is the one for you.


Starting from Windermere railway station, this route follows the eastern shore of the lake along a variety of country lanes – allowing you to take in all the sights and sounds that have served as inspiration to some of our most famous poets and artists – before turning off at Newby Bridge and following the west side of the lake up to the ferry port.

Time to complete: 3-5 hours


Beatrix Potter Trail

If Bowness’s Beatrix Potter museum has piqued your interest, and you want a cycle route that encompasses some historical points of interest while showing you some of the best views the lakes has to offer, this trail is for you.


Starting the journey by crossing the lake on the ferry, this 11 mile route takes you along country lanes and bridleways towards Hill Top where Beatrix Potter wrote some of her most famous stories.


Time to complete: 2-3 hours

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