๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง Lake District I – Bowness-on-Windermere

A huge travel day! We travelled through three countries in one day to get from Ireland to our long awaited bucket list area of Lake District in England! We left at 7am from Port Stewart for a one hour car journey to the gloomy wind swept port of Larne. We were the first ones to check in for our two hour ferry ride across the rough rocky seas back to Scotland. After an hour waiting on the windy weather beaten shore (no one waiting got out of their cars except Rob and I) and we know why!!! We got blown around like a stickman in gale forced winds and pelted in the face by rain.

Once aboard our ferry liner P & O the conditions on board our 2 hour journey didn’t improve. Once again another impressive and comfortable cruise liner, but we weren’t able to explore the facilities as the rough seas made us look like walking drunks without the consumption of alcohol!!! A seated position was the only way to endure the sea’s turbulence.


We embarked 2 hours later in one piece at the sea port of Stranraer in Scotland.


On our hour an a half drive out of Scotland we stopped to explore the lofty ruins of Carsluith Castle.


This beautiful castle residence was was built in 1560 and abandoned in 1748 when its residents immigrated to India. No one lived in it afterwards. Many of its unique stand out features are still visible today.

After crossing back into England we drove for about another hour and a half and finally arriving in the dark at our country cottage in the rural area of the Lake District. Darkness, narrow lanes with no street lights and navigation giving us wrong directions made finding our accommodation challenging. We resorted to a Where’s Wally approach and good old team work. We knew what our accommodation looked like so it was a matter of elimination. Rob likened it to playing hide and seek in the dark. A great game but not after travelling all day!!!


Once inside we loved the cosy fireplace, low timber beams and vintage furnishings.


We were eager to explore the Lake District over the next three days. Here are our favourite places we explored:


The lake front was so peaceful and serene. The walk along the promenade was such an energy giver. Lake Windermere’s backdrop of stunning autumn foliage didn’t look real – it just looked like an oil painting.

The silent moored boats that lay sleeping for the winter added a sense of calm to the once busy summer time lake.


The friendly wild lake ducks, birds and swans plummeted up from tourists added character and a joyful feel to the relaxed lake sidewalk.

We could easily understand why Beatrix Potter was inspired by the landscape and the wildlife. On our first night we celebrated being in the Lake District by watching the movie, Peter Rabbit. Even though a lot of the opening scenes were filmed in the Lake District, the movie set for Bea’s home was built and filmed in a park in Sydney Australia. We found this a little disappointing. We tried to visit Beatrix Potter’s real house and gardens but due to winter opening time it was not possible. It was only opened Fri, Sat & Sun. However we did slow down and took caution when we spotted the Peter Road sign by the roadside, as we didn’t want to hit Peter or any of his clan.

We also slowed down at the wild pheasant road sign as we were astonished at how many pheasants were in the surrounding forest and loitering on the road.

A favourite stop for us was having an afternoon drink at the Swan Hotel in Newby Bridge. The very glamorous hotel and spa sits snuggly next to a pretty river.

It is surrounded by beautiful gardens. A Christmas Robin sat in the park lamp post chirping in the rain. Oh if you don’t like rain… mmmm, well don’t come to the Lake District.


This hotel had a lot of meaning for us. We had planned to visit this area in January 2015, but we had to make alternate plans as the area was hit with devastating floods. The Swan Hotel was badly flooded and closed for refurbishments for around 6 months. We were told that they kept all their staff on to help (now that is a great employer). It was easy to fall in love with all the gorgeous wallpaper in the Swan Hotel. This is how we finished our first full day in the Lake District.


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