William Wordsworth's Lakeland
This route follows the life of William Wordsworth and offers opportunities to visit his childhood home in Cockermouth,Wordsworth House and his adulthood homes in Grasmere and Rydal; Dove Cottage and Rydal Mount. The route also includes the beautiful northern lakes of Crummock Water, Buttermere and Derwentwater and allows time to explore the village of Grasmere and to visit the famous Sarah Nelson's Grasmere Gingerbread Shop.
On leaving Coniston follow the main road north through Yewdale and Ambleside and on to Keswick. From Keswick travel west on the A66 along the western shore of Lake Bassenthwaite and on to the bustling market town of Cockermouth. Wordsworth House is a fine Georgian property at the western end of the town centre and it was here William Wordsworth lived as a child.
Download the directions here: Coniston - Cockermouth
The drive Cockermouth, through the Vale of Lorton, passing Crummock Water, Buttermere, Honister Mountain Pass, Borrowdale and back to Keswick is one of the most beautiful drives in the Lake District with so many opportunities for photographs along the way. Beware that Honister Pass can be dangerous in the winter and during poor weather condition. If this is the case return from Cockermouth to Keswick via the outward route on the A66.
After passing along the eastern shore of Thirlmere the road climbs over Dunmail Raise before descending into the Vale of Grasmere. There is a large car park at the southern end of Grasmere Village on Stock Lane and from here it is only a very short walk to the centre of the village with many cafes to choose from for lunch. In the graveyard of St Oswalds Church in the centre of the village can be found the gravestones of William Wordsworth and his family. Next to the graveyard is the old school house that is today the famous Sarah Nelson's Grasmere Gingerbread Shop
Returning to the car park in Stock Lane it is less than a five minute walk to Dove Cottage and the Wordsworth Museum. Remember to allow sufficient time to visit the cottage, museum and art galleries.
Download the directions here: Cockermouth - Buttermere - Keswick - Grasmere - Dove Cottage
From the car park on Stock Lane it is a ten minute drive along the shoresof Grasmere and Rydal Water to Rydal Mount and Gardens, William Wordsworth's home from 1813-1850. Turning off the main road at Rydal Church the drive way climbs steeply and Rydal Mount's car park is at the top of the hill. After visiting the house and gardens take the opportunity to walk onto the "Coffin Route" (ask the staff at Rydal Mount for a leaflet). From the path there are beautiful views across Rydal Water
Download the directions here: Grasmere - Rydal Mount
Returning to Coniston the route passes the Waterhead Hotel which is a great place to enjoy dinner in the Bay Restaurant and Bar
Download the directions here: Rydal Mount - Waterhead Hotel - Coniston