Taking one of these short New Year walks in the Lake District area is a great response to over-indulgence during the festive season. Escape the confines of town or city, and find time to contemplate those New Year’s resolutions in the crisp, fresh air and wide open spaces (even if you do end up over-indulging in cosy inns…). Here are our suggestions for how you can spend your New Year in this beautiful part of the country.
Loweswater is situated on the western side of the Lake District National Park. Starting at the car park at Maggie’s Bridge, this easy lake walk around Loweswater is roughly four miles and should take around 2 hours. From here, the path around Loweswater should be easy to see. Weather permitting, the walk should allow for scenic views of the Northern Fells. Perhaps you will want some refreshments after your exertions. Handily, the village of Loweswater is home to the Kirkstile Inn, offering high quality local food and real ales.
High Sweden Bridge from Ambleside
This three-mile walk offers no difficulties from a route-finding perspective. Take some good, sturdy footwear, and you can expect a couple of hours of pleasant walking. A good starting point is the car park off Rydal Road in Ambleside. You should then cross Rydal Road to walk up Smithy Brow which joins the Kirkstone Road coming downhill from the left. Take the first left turning for Sweden Bridge Lane. The walk follows a circular route using High Sweden Bridge as the turning point. Enjoy fine views across the village of Ambleside to the waters of Windermere beyond, and looking west down to Rydal Water. On arriving back at Ambleside, you can choose from a variety of local eateries, including the Wateredge Inn.
For those feeling a little more adventurous, especially if the weather warms up, Treetop Trek is a high ropes course at the Lake District Visitor Centre at Brockhole, Windermere. The course is split between two levels, high and low, with swings, rope bridges and wobbly logs placed to challenge you as you adventure through the trees. There is also an exhilarating triple zipline from the Treetop tower to Windermere shores.
If you wish to escape dry land for a bit, you could take a trip on the Ullswater Steamer from Glenridding to Pooley Bridge. For the more energetic among you, the walk back to Glenridding is around 8 miles. Otherwise, take a more leisurely potter around Pooley Bridge and return on the steamer.
To help you find your way around the Lake District, A-Z Adventure Atlases will ensure you stay on the right track.