Walks From The Door:
The Lake District is famous for its walks and Manesty Holiday Cottages are ideally placed in the walker’s paradise of Borrowdale. Behind Manesty, the bracken and heather-clad fells of Catbells and Maiden Moor rise to 1800 feet. Below spreads the valley floor. Derwentwater, known as ‘the Queen of the Lakes’ is just a 15 minutes’ stroll from the cottages, hidden by the extensive National Trust woodland and parkland.
From Manesty there are relaxing rambles along the river and round the lake or there are demanding day walks to Scafell and Great Gable in the heart of the Cumbrian mountains. Alternatively there are easier walks up Catbells, or across the head of the lake to Watendlath in its picturesque hanging valley, and to the tarns and fells beyond.
For example, a short climb behind Manesty over Hause Gate leads past old lead mines to Littletown where Beatrix Potter’s Mrs Tiggywinkle lived. Or take the mine track from Manesty which follows the foot of Catbells passing the old lead mine at Brandlehow to Hawse End and Fawe Park where Peter Rabbit stole from Mr McGregor’s garden, and the Flopsie Bunnies slept in the compost heap. The path ends at Nichol End, one of the landing stages for the Edwardian launches which run from Keswick to Lodore and Brandlehow, both just a mile from Manesty.
We have written a series of 10 circular walks graded according to length and difficulty, which all start and finish and Manesty. You’ll find these in your cottage, together with maps and Lake District walking books. If you are new to the area or indeed feel you would like a new look at the fells and valleys try KR Guided Walks, they offer both private guiding and the group experience.
Cycling: Nearby Newlands (just 2 miles from Manesty via quiet back roads) and the back of Skiddaw are great to explore; off road routes are well mapped and Whinlatter Forest Park (8 miles) specialises in mountain bike routes.
Climbing: Borrowdale abounds with crags challenging climbers of all levels; try the renowned Shepherd’s Crag (1.5 miles from Manesty by foot) and the less well known Black Crag (2 miles); the Bowder Stone, also within walking distance (2 miles), is great for bouldering; or tackle the unique Via Ferrata at Honister (5.5 miles).
Water Sports: Derwentwater and the Rivers Derwent and Greta are ideal for rowing, windsurfing, sailing and canoeing/kayaking. You can hire most gear at Nichol End Marine and Derwentwater Marina and at the Lodore landing stage (just 1.5 miles away) Platty+ offers professional instruction.
Wild Swimming: For outdoor swimming enthusiasts, Borrowdale is home to the famous Black Moss Pot (6 miles away), while the River Derwent has good swimming holes (less than a mile away) and the south end of Derwentwater has plenty of quiet coves.
Horse Riding: You can trek across the moors at nearby Rookin House Farm. Armathwaite Hall also offers a variety of riding experiences.
Golf: Enjoy 9 or 18 holes at any of the good golf courses in the area; Keswick is a challenging 18 hole parkland course with panoramic views.
Fishing: Fish for trout in the various nearby streams and lakes such as picturesque Watendlath Tarn, or Derwentwater, one of the national park’s major lakes.
Adreneline Sports: ‘Go Ape’ is a high ropes course at Whinlatter (8 miles from Manesty). The Via Ferrata at Honister is also recommended. Or try mountain biking, a paragliding taster day with Air Ventures, or ghyll scrambling with the Keswick Climbing Wall and Activity Centre.
Shops: Keswick can claim to be the outdoor clothing and equipment centre of Britain with more than 30 specialist shops, so save your kit purchases for Keswick.