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A rural area in the North West of England, famous for its beautiful lakes and mountains

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Lakes and Fells
Pretty Villages
Outdoor Activities
William Wordsworth
Beatrix Potter
The Lake District is a rural area in the North West of England. It is famous for its lakes, mountains often referred to as fells and beautiful scenery. The most visited part of the Lakes is the central area contained within the Lake District National Park. Found entirely within the county of Cumbria, this is one of England's 14 National Parks and was designated as protected land in 1951. The Park is one of the most mountainous, with all of England's mountains above 3000ft being found within the Park boundary.

Skiddaw from Derwent Water
Photo hughmiller99
The Lakeland region is one of the most visually stunning landscapes in Britain and one of the most popular holiday destinations in England. Its Lakes and other features were formed as a result of intermittent glacial action; the most recent of which ended 15,000 years ago. The action of the expanding glaciers resulted in the many U-shaped valleys, which then subsequently filled with water producing the world famous lakes. In the upper regions the glacial cirques or valley heads are typically filled with tarns and provide the stunning hybrid of mountain terrain and highland lakes. The high mountains are rocky, with the lower being moorland. Below the tree line a mix of planted pine forests and native oak woodlands add a swathe of green to the grey/brown fells.

Part of Whinlatter Forest
Photo alh1
The Park include England's tallest peak, Scafell Pike at 3,210 feet or 978 metres. The mountains of the Lake District offer a paradise to hikers and ramblers and the hundreds of miles of walking paths mean no visitor will ever get bored. Other notable peaks include Skiddaw and Helvellyn. The latter is famous for its approach route along Striding Edge, one of the most popular scrambles in Britain. Whilst 3000 feet fells may pale into insignificance in comparison to global peaks, the mountains of the Lakes still offer superlative views and breathtaking scenery. Walks can be found at all levels of difficulty and the Park houses a number of excellent camping facilities.

Scafell Pike
Photo TerryA McDonald
In addition to the beautiful mountains, the Lake District is so called because of its array of lakes, meres and tarns. Windermere is the Park's most popular being used for many water sports and pleasure boating. It is the largest and longest natural body of water in England and this 16.9 km long lake has been a popular holiday destination since the building of the Kendal and Windermere railway in 1847. The neighbouring town of Ambleside provides a beautiful spot to grab some lunch or a classic English tea and scone. Other well visited bodies of water include Ullswater, Derwent Water, and Coniston Water, famous for the tragic 1967 waterspeed record attempt which resulted in the death of Sir Donald Campbell.

Views over Ambleside and Lake Windermere
Photo Chris Poole
The Lakes also offers a chance to see some of the most exciting and rare wildlife in England. It provides a home for the red squirrel, at least one Golden Eagle and colonies of sundew and butterwort, two species of carnivorous plant. The waterways of the Lakelands also house many rare species of fish; including the vendace, the schelly and the Artic charr.
As if the natural and scenic wonder of the Lakes wasn't enough, the district is also famous for its literary heritage. William Wordsworth, one of Britain's most celebrated poets, was much inspired by the area's beauty. For example he penned the world famous poem 'I wandered lonely as a cloud' as a result of a walk through a daffodil patch on the shores of Ullswater. The poets Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Robert Southey and Wordsworth became known as the 'Lake Poets' and helped to establish the Lake District as England's natural romantic heartland. The Children's author Beatrix Potter was also a resident of the Lakes and set many of her charming books within the Lake District. Finally, a set of books detailing fell walks in this beautiful part of England was written by the now famous Alfred Wainwright.

Inside Dove Cottage, the home William Wordsworth
Photo HKJamesHo
A trip to the Lakes is a trip to one of Britain's most quaint, idyllic and striking landscapes. A true British gem. Take some time to visit, follow in the footsteps of millions and soak up the poetic beauty of the area. Then maybe you too, like so many, will find the words of Wordsworth rolling off your tongue:
"I wandered lonely as a cloud, That floats on high o'er vales and hills, When all at once I saw a crowd, A host of golden daffodils; Beside the lake, beneath the trees, Fluttering and dancing in the breeze"
Visitor Information
Cumbria Tourism. Tel: 01539 822 222

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