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Lakes Culture World Heritage Signature Experiences - Coniston & Grizedale
Lakes Culture World Heritage Signature Experiences - Coniston & Grizedale

World Heritage Signature Experiences
Coniston & Grizedale

The Old Man of Coniston (mountain) has seen many changes in the Coniston valley over the millennia: the building of prehistoric burial cairns and medieval monasteries; the noisy age of copper mining and slate quarrying and the inspirational era of leisure, literature, art and the outdoors that we continue to enjoy today.

With our partners Lakes Culture, we have selected some luxurious, dark and hands-on World Heritage experiences that you won’t get anywhere else. Choose to do one or all of them, then find a great place to stay with our suggestions below.

The Ruskin Experience

Ruskin Experience Gondola

Travel in style to Ruskin's home

A unique opportunity to experience luxury travel across Coniston Water on the pristine Steam Yacht Gondola; something that used to be just for wealthy Victorians. The Gondola will deliver you to the jetty at Brantwood, for an enlightening day at the beautiful home of John Ruskin.

Ruskin was a lover of art and architecture and a radical thinker in Victorian society. His influences are still seen today; he inspired the founders of the National Health Service, the National Trust and public libraries. He had international influences on important issues such as the minimum wage, women’s education and environmental protection.

At Brantwood, don’t miss the eight carefully designed gardens - particularly the journey to Dante’s paradise - and a chance to play the musical stones, before re-joining the Gondola for your return journey.

Please note: The Gondola operates between April and October.

More information and book

Stargazing

Grizedale Forest

Did you know from towns and cities we see just a handful of stars, but in the Lake District you could count 2,000 at any one time!

Join Robert Ince as your guide through the constellations in the dark skies above Grizedale Forest. There are a number of events throughout the winter and spring including Meteors at Christmas, New Year Moonwatch, Dark Sky Festival and Jupiterwatch.

Event Dates & Tickets

Dark skies over Cumbria by Justin Grammer

Art & Literature Retreat

Brantwood, overlooking Coniston Water

Brantwood

All of us have at some time or another experienced a landscape that speaks to our innermost being - a spiritual landscape. It may not be an important place, just one that connects with you or has special associations. The Lake District, like many different landscapes, has been a source of inspiration for music, art, literature and dance.

This artistic and literary retreat at the historic location of Brantwood in Coniston will allow you to look at the ways in which different landscapes have been shaped and managed to express their spiritual and special qualities, and see how the Brantwood estate will inspire you.

This event takes place 21-23 Sept 2018

Engineer for the Day

Be an 'Engineer for the day' aboard Steam Yacht Gondola

Gondola’s story is rooted in the beginnings of tourism in the Lake District when the first Picturesque travellers came here in the late 18th century. This Engineer for the Day experience is a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the nostalgia of the age of steam by rolling up your sleeves and being part of the crew for a hands-on adventure.

You’ll spend time up on the helm as well as experiencing life in the engine room of this magnificent, rebuilt, Victorian steam boat travelling across Coniston Water under the gaze of the Old Man of Coniston fell (mountain). After all your hard work you can tuck into a hearty lunch from the Bluebird Café included as part of your experience, also included is a ticket for your family/friends so they can capture your toil at the helm. No prior experience needed.

Details and book tickets

Coniston Steam Yacht Gondola

Steam Bending Wood

Steam bending wood workshop

A woodwork class with a difference in Grizedale Forest

Forestry was, and continues to be today, an industry in the Lake District that has shaped the landscape we see today. On International Sculpture Day join artist Charlie Whinney to learn about the history, uses and physical properties of wood, fittingly run at Grizedale Forest. With the background information covered, Charlie will let you into the dark art of steam-bending solid wood into impossible looking shapes, including twisting, splitting and compression. 10 different species of wood will be bent as well as seeing how thick a piece of wood can be bent on the day.

Everyone gets to take part during the 2 hour teaching session and there will an optional making session afterwards when you can make your own unique sculpture, steam-bent pot or lampshade to take home. After this transformational afternoon, with a talk, slideshow, practical seminar, plus live experiments you will never look at a tree in the same way again!

This event takes place on 28 April 2018.
Teaching session 1 - 3pm. Making session 3 - 5pm.

Be an early Lake District tourist

Experience the
Grand Victorian Circular Tour

Accompanied by an entertaining and knowledgeable National Trust tour guide you can relive the Lake District as the early tourists did in the Victorian and Edwardian era. The full day experience includes being transported by steam train and luxury steam yacht, a delicious picnic and taking in key viewing points. We’ve added a little help from modernity to make the connections easier and more comfortable, and feel free to use your camera or phone to capture the views instead of needing to draw them in your sketchbooks.

This event takes place on 15 June and 7 Sept. Book on to one of the dates or small groups are welcome to get in touch to arrange a date.

Book and more info

Grand Victorian Circular Tour

Find places to stay

We have a collection of great places to stay around the Coniston & Grizedale area.
Please click any of the links below to view details and book your stay.

Walker Ground Barn

Walker Ground Barn

This converted traditional Lakeland stone barn is situated in a picturesque rural location at the end of a small lane and next to the bridle path leading to Grizedale Forrest. Sleeps 4, accepts 1 well behaved dog. Change over day Saturday.

Orchard Cottage

Orchard Cottage

Orchard Cottage is centrally situated in Coniston village. Excellent accommodation with three attractive en suite rooms all on ground level. Tea and coffee making facilities. Guest lounge with television, separate dining room.

Elterwater Park Country Guest House

Elterwater Park Country Guest House

High on the hills above Langdale valleys, with views from Kirkstone to Coniston Old Man. Excellent cuisine, homegrown produce, pretty garden, elegant decor. On Cumbria Way. Ample safe private parking.

Three Shires Inn

Three Shires Inn

This traditional slate Inn was built in 1872 near the meeting point of the old counties of Westmorland, Lancashire and Cumberland. The valley of Little Langdale is the most peaceful and unspoilt in the central Lake District.

Copper View Exterior

Coniston Holidays

Copper View & Beechgrove are both Vb 4-star bungalows. Set in the centre of Coniston village an ideal base for many activities.

Walker Ground Manor 5* B&B

Walker Ground Manor

A beautiful traditional English Lake District country house dating from 1680 retaining many original features, set in its own grounds. Offers guests 5 star accommodation within a relaxed & friendly atmosphere.

Oaklands Guest House

Oaklands Guest House

Large spacious rooms with superb quality pocket sprung beds and quality fittings, fresh local produce used for breakfast.

Dower House

Dower House

The house overlooks lake Windermere, 3 miles from Ambleside. Situated through the main gates of Wray Castle and up the drive. A bird-watcher's paradise.

Mill Brow Farm Cottage

Mill Brow Farm Cottage

Mill Brow Cottage offers rather special 2 bedroomed accommodation, located at Skelwith Bridge, gateway to the very scenic Great Langdale valley. Quietly situated away from the road 2.5 miles from Ambleside and Lake Windermere just off A593.

Rose How 1

Yewfield Vegetarian Guest House

An impressive Gothic and towered house, dating back to 1859. Set in 80 acres of grounds by the beauty spot of Tarn Hows, Hawkshead.

Summer Hill Country House

Summer Hill Country House

Set between the popular villages of Hawkshead and Coniston and a short walk from Tarn Hows, Summer Hill offers contemporary luxurious guest facilities in a traditional Lake District country house.

High Wray Farm B&B

High Wray Farm B&B

This charming 17th C farmhouse has original oak beams and many original features.

Howe Farm Bed & Breakfast

Howe Farm Bed & Breakfast

Howe Farm is a traditional working farm offering quality accommodation and spectacular views over Esthwaite water. A warm welcome is assured.

Scarr Head Caravans

Scarr Head Caravans

Small working farm at foot of Coniston mountains and 2 miles south of Coniston village. three modern caravans set in large private garden. Lovely walks and scenery right out of the farmyard. Perfect base for a Lake District holiday.

Langdale Hotel & Spa

Langdale Hotel and Spa

The Langdale Hotel & Spa in the heart of the Lake District, is the perfect place for getting away from it all.

Kings Arms

Kings Arms

The famous Kings Arms Inn is a friendly, family-run, village centre Inn. Good food, real ales and warm surroundings make this 500 year old inn an ideal stopover in the historic village of Hawkshead. Children and pets welcome.

Shelt Gill

Shelt Gill

Shelt Gill is a medieval cruck cottage with dry stone walls, modernised to make a cosy character holiday home.

High Dale Park Barn

High Dale Park Barn

The property is situated in an extremely peaceful location, well within the Lake District National Park, at the head of the tiny, unspoilt valley of Dale Park. Dale Park is one of Lakeland's best kept secrets. It abounds in wild life.

The Croft

The Croft

The Croft is situated in the picturesque village of Hawkshead a short walk from local shops, inns and tea rooms.

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Ullswater Steamers

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