Why take the train to the Lake District?

Rightly treasured as an area of outstanding natural beauty, the Lake District is a wonderful place to get away from it all and recharge the batteries. But the Lakes aren't just about the great outdoors. There’s plenty of things to do with its thriving arts scene, live music and some of the best food and drink in the country.

Top Attractions

Lake Windermere

Over ten miles long and more than 200 feet deep, Windermere is the country’s largest lake and one of the top attractions in the Lake District – with plenty of strength in depth when it comes to things to do. There's the Windermere Steamboat Museum, a ferry, the ornamental Holehird Gardens, and of course lots of water sports if you like to make a splash. Windermere's crowning glory though is its picturesque and undemanding walks that really enable you to take in this awesome natural wonder.

Image credit: © Ian Dagnall / Alamy


Named after one of the ancient kingdoms of Britain, this large heritage attraction just outside Penrith features exhibitions, live events, a cinema and shops celebrating local produce and wares. Rheged has the largest turf roof in Europe, which makes it appear to rise out of the ground, and this all-in-one top attraction offers a very Cumbrian brand of family fun, shopping, refreshments, culture and events.

Image credit: © joel zatz / Alam


Famed for its particularly clear water and accessible by bus from Penrith, Ullswater is described as Britain’s most beautiful lake. However it also offers adventure aplenty, with a huge range of water sports and outdoor activities available on the lake and surrounding area.

The National Trust’s Ullswater and Aira Force parkland is home to the stunning 70-foot Aira Force waterfall, which rewards walkers with spectacular views at the end of a gentle trail plus a cheeky refuelling stop at the local tea rooms.

World of Beatrix Potter

Lose yourself in the world of Peter Rabbit and friends at this attraction dedicated to the life and works of Beatrix Potter. Trains to the Lake District bring hundreds of tourists who visit solely to experience the interactive exhibits and to get the chance to meet Potter’s most famous characters – which is a big draw especially for children. Close to Windermere and boasting a shop and cafe, which features home-baked breads and cakes, it’s a relaxing way to explore the charm of the Lake District.

© Ashley Cooper / Alamy

Brockhole Visitor Centre

A real celebration of the Lake District close to Windermere, Brockholes is a visitor centre that combines the joy of outdoor life with local produce, activities and culture. There are plenty of things to do here such as hire a bike, pony or boat to make the most of Windermere’s sights; throw yourself into the adventure playground; take in the regular exhibitions and events on birdwatching and bushcraft - or simply stroll through the beautiful ornamental gardens.

© John Morrison / Alamy

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