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30 Fun Things to Do in South Lakes

Welcome to the stunning South Lakes region, a jewel in the heart of the Lake District!

Known for its breathtaking landscapes, rich cultural history, and many activities for all ages, South Lakes is a destination that promises unforgettable experiences.

Whether you’re a nature lover, history buff, adventure seeker, or need a tranquil retreat, this picturesque area has something for everyone.

To help you make the most of your visit, we’ve curated a list of 30 must-try activities and attractions.

From scenic cruises on Lake Windermere, the largest lake in England, to exploring the quaint streets of Hawkshead Village, and from the literary haunts of Beatrix Potter and William Wordsworth to the exhilarating adventures in Grizedale Forest, this guide covers it all.

Here’s our comprehensive guide to 30 Things to Do in the South Lakes – an invitation to explore, relax, and discover the many wonders of this enchanting region.

30 Things to Do in South Lakes

  1. Lake Windermere Cruise: Scenic boat ride on England’s largest lake.
  2. Beatrix Potter’s Hill Top: Home of the famous children’s author.
  3. Grizedale Forest: Explore trails and an outdoor sculpture park.
  4. Coniston Water: Water sports and boat tours.
  5. Hawkshead Village: Quaint, historic village exploration.
  6. The World of Beatrix Potter Attraction: Family-friendly attraction in Bowness-on-Windermere.
  7. Sizergh Castle and Garden: Medieval house with beautiful gardens.
  8. Lakeland Motor Museum: Car and motorcycle enthusiasts’ haven.
  9. Ambleside Roman Fort: Remains of a 2nd-century Roman fort.
  10. Rydal Mount and Gardens: Historic home of poet William Wordsworth.
  11. Brockhole on Windermere: Gardens, adventure playgrounds, and treetop trek.
  12. Fell Foot Park: Park at Lake Windermere’s southern tip, perfect for picnics.
  13. Tarn Hows: Picturesque spot for gentle walks.
  14. Steam Yacht Gondola on Coniston Water: Victorian steam-powered yacht ride.
  15. Lakes Aquarium: Explore local and exotic aquatic life.
  16. Kendal Castle: Medieval castle ruins.
  17. Lakeland Climbing Centre: Indoor climbing for all ages.
  18. Holker Hall and Gardens: Stately home with impressive gardens.
  19. Blackwell, The Arts & Crafts House: Arts and Crafts architecture.
  20. Haverthwaite Railway: Steam train rides through the countryside.
  21. Wray Castle: Mock-Gothic castle with public grounds.
  22. Dove Cottage and the Wordsworth Museum: Former home of William Wordsworth.
  23. Brantwood: Home of John Ruskin, overlooking Coniston Water.
  24. Stott Park Bobbin Mill: Lake District’s industrial heritage.
  25. Cascades Health Spa & Fitness Club: Spa and fitness facilities at the Whitewater Hotel.
  26. Lakeland Maze Farm Park: Mazes, farm animals, and play areas.
  27. Windermere Jetty Museum: Maritime history of the Lake District.
  28. Cartmel Racecourse: Horse racing in a rural setting.
  29. Swinside Stone Circle: Prehistoric stone circle in a beautiful landscape.
  30. The Quaker Tapestry Museum, Kendal: Story of the Quakers through embroidered panels.


This comprehensive list offers diverse activities, from historical and cultural sites to natural beauty and outdoor adventures, catering to all interests and ages in the South Lakes.

The Cascades Health Spa & Fitness Club in the South Lakes

South Lakes Swimming Pool

The Cascades Health Spa & Fitness Club, situated in the picturesque South Lakes region, is a part of the Whitewater Hotel in the Lake District National Park.

It offers a tranquil setting for relaxation and rejuvenation.

The spa features a range of treatments, including massages and facials, alongside a well-equipped fitness centre with various exercise classes.

Additional amenities include a heated indoor swimming pool, a Jacuzzi, sauna, and steam room.

This luxurious retreat is ideal for both day visits and longer stays, providing a perfect blend of wellness, fitness, and relaxation in the stunning backdrop of the Lake District.

Click here to learn more about the Cascades Health Spa & Fitness Club…

What is the Weather Like in the South Lakes?

A Church in the Southern Lake District

The weather in the South Lakes area of the Lake District in Cumbria, UK, varies significantly with each season, typical of the English climate:

  • Spring (March to May): Spring sees gradually warming temperatures with highs typically ranging from 9°C to 15°C.  The weather can be pretty unpredictable, with a mix of sunny days and rain showers. This is a great time to see the blooming of flowers and the lush greenery of the countryside.
  • Summer (June to August): Summer is generally the warmest and driest season, with average high temperatures ranging from 17°C to 20°C, though occasionally higher. This season sees the most sunshine, making it ideal for outdoor activities like hiking, boating, and exploring the many attractions.
  • Autumn (September to November): Autumn brings cooler temperatures, with averages ranging from 8°C to 14°C. This season is known for its beautiful fall foliage, with the leaves of the trees turning vivid colours. Rain is more frequent, and the weather can be quite changeable.
  • Winter (December to February): Winters are cold, with average highs around 4°C to 7°C and lows often near freezing. Snowfall is possible, especially in higher areas, which can add a magical touch to the landscape and make some paths and roads more challenging. Rain and overcast days are standard.


Overall, the Lake District is known for its changeable weather, so it’s advisable to be prepared for rain and varying temperatures at any time of the year.

Layered clothing and waterproof gear are recommended, especially if you’re planning outdoor activities.

Where is the South Lakes area of Cumbria?

The South Lakes area is located in the southern part of the Lake District National Park in Cumbria, North West England.

This region is renowned for its stunning natural beauty, encompassing picturesque lakes, rolling hills, and quaint villages.

It includes some of the Lake District’s most famous areas and attractions.

Key locations within the South Lakes area include:

  • Windermere: The largest natural lake in England, where many popular tourist towns, like Bowness-on-Windermere and Ambleside, are situated.
  • Coniston Water: Known for its association with Donald Campbell’s water speed records and the beautiful surrounding countryside.
  • Kendal: Often considered the gateway to the South Lakes, it is known for its historic buildings and cultural sites.


The South Lakes area is easily accessible by road and public transport, making it a popular destination for day-trippers and longer stays.

Its natural beauty, outdoor activities, and cultural attractions make it a highlight of the Lake District and a must-visit area in Cumbria.

Final Notes On  Things to Do in the South Lakes Area

The South Lakes in the Lake District is a splendid destination due to its breathtaking natural scenery, rich cultural heritage, and wide array of outdoor activities.

It’s a place where the tranquillity of serene lakes and quaint villages combines with the adventure of hiking and boating, all steeped in a deep historical and literary significance.

This balance of relaxation, adventure, and cultural exploration makes the South Lakes an appealing choice for a diverse range of visitors.

PS – You might also enjoy some afternoon tea at the Whitewater Hotel in Backbarrow…

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