Best things to do near Ullswater

August 5, 2022

Ullswater is the second largest lake in England at seven and a half miles long. Surrounded by mountain scenery, there are several towns and villages on the shore of the vast lake including Pooley Bridge and Glenridding as well as a whole host of walks and outdoor activities.

Hutton John Estate is just a short drive away from the shores of Ullswater and within easy reach of some of its best attractions. We’ve put together a few of the best things to do in Ullswater so you can start making a list of activities you’d like to tick off during your stay at Hutton John Estate!

Visit Aira Force

7miles from Hutton John Estate

Aira Force waterfall is an iconic Ullswater attraction and probably one of the most famous waterfalls in the Lake District. You can enjoy the majestic 65-foot waterfall by taking the walkway to one of the viewing platforms. There is also a kiosk to pick up some tea and cake (we can highly recommend the scones), plenty of picnic spots to eat said tea and cake as well as some lovely woodland walk paths. Keep your eyes peeled for red squirrels as they have a fantastic population in the surrounding woodlands.

Fancy arriving to Aira Force in style? Hop on an Ullswater Steamer from either Pooley Bridge or Glenridding and get off at Aira Force Pier.

You can find out more about Aira Force here.

Spend some time at Dalemain

5.7 miles from Hutton John Estate

Dalemain is one of the most beautiful and impressive stately houses in the North West of England. If you are a history lover, it is definitely worth a visit. Take a tour around the Georgian mansion where you can see the state rooms full of beautiful furniture, paintings and artefacts including the Yeomanry Museum in the original Pele Tower, the Tudor bedrooms, nursery and marmalade museum. The five-acre Dalemain Gardens is also beautiful with richly planted borders with intriguing and unusual planting. The Rose Walk, ancient apple trees and Tudor knot garden will be particularly interesting for the green-fingered amongst you. The gardens also contain an earth sculpture, wildflower spiral garden, stumpery and parkland walk. Finish your visit with a cuppa at the Dalemain Tearooms and be sure to try one of their famous marmalades!

Find out more about Dalemain here.

Take a drive over Kirkstone Pass

The drive from Hutton John Estate to the Kirkstone Pass is 15.5 miles

Fancy an adventurous drive with fantastic views? Then a drive up Kirkstone Pass may be right up your street! If you are a very keen cyclist, you could even try cycling up it but we warn you – it is definitely not for cycling novices! Kirkstone Pass is the Lake District’s highest pass at an altitude of 1,489 feet. The road, which is a section of the A592, connects Ambleside in the Rothay Valley to Patterdale in the Ullswater Valley. It is named after ‘Kirkstone’, a large bolder at the top of the pass. The road from Ambleside to the top is called ‘The Struggle’ for good reason! There is a lovely little pub called the Kirkstone Pass Inn at the top which is England’s third highest pub and well worth a pitstop. On a clear day, the top of the pass gives you a fantastic view back towards Patterdale with Brothers Water as its focal point.

Do check the weather and road conditions before going!

Climb Helvellyn

The start of the route is 9.3 miles from Hutton John Estate

If you are a keen walker and want a challenge, Helvellyn is definitely worth a go. Definitely not for the faint of heart, the famous Wainwright is the third highest peak in England after Scafell and Scafell Pike. There are many routes up the fell but perhaps the most famous is the ascent via Striding Edge and Swirral Edge, starting from Glenridding. Striding Edge is a narrow ridge with a reputation for being scary and difficult due to the sheer drops on either side of the narrow pathway. It is definitely not a beginner’s walk and should only be tackled by experienced walkers with the correct attire. If it is your first go, we recommend going on a dry, mild day with a gentle wind. The views from the top are breathtaking and you’ll also get to see the fantastic Red Tarn.

Take a look at the route here

Try Wakesurfing

6.0 miles from Hutton John Estate

If you’ve given all the ‘usual’ watersports a go, like canoeing, kayaking and paddleboarding and are a bit of a thrill seeker, then Wakesurfing might be of interest. This can be done on Ullswater with Wake & Surf based near Pooley Bridge which offer one-to-one and group sessions. So, what exactly is Wakesurfing? Well, Wakesurfing is an off-shoot of wakeboarding. It’s a surface watersport where a rider trails behind a boat, riding the boat’s wake without being directly pulled by the boat. After getting up on the boat’s wake (normally by use of a tow rope) Wakesurfers then drop the rope and ‘surf’ the wake waves. Wakesurfing uses special boards, designed specifically for wakes.

Sound like something you might like to give a go? Visit Wake & Surf to find out more.

Ready to book a getaway to Ullswater? Both our cabins and cottages are just a short drive from the lake and have easy access to the surrounding areas. They can all be booked online here.

Three beautiful and lovingly restored cottages. Where heritage meets modern-day living. 

Sleeps 4, 6, or 10.

Four contemporary cabins, immersed in nature. Where the outdoors meets luxury. 

Sleeps 2.

Passed down through generations, our family and history are at the heart of the approximately 300 acre Hutton John Estate.

any questions?

If you have any questions or queries about the Estate, or our Accommodation, get in touch.