And on four days an alternative longer and steeper hike is available for those who are tempted by the more robust conditions of the mountain tops, where the exhilarating beauty of rugged mountainsides, lakes and dales can be seen spreading below.
Easy-to-moderate walks cover 4 to 8 miles, with ascents of 200 to 1000 feet. Challenging options are normally slightly longer, cross rougher terrain and have daily ascents of up to 2500 feet. Take a "get acquainted" walk round the neighboring village.
Walk to nearby Bowness-on-Windermere or Ambleside. The challenging option takes a higher level route; the easier option is shorter and involves less uphill. Then into Grasmere for a visit to Dove Cottage, the home of William Wordsworth, and the Wordsworth Museum. At the hotel a noted local author gives a talk about the Lakes' poets.
We walk by Silver How to the secluded moorland ridge which separates the Langdale and Easedale valleys. Views of Langdale and the Langdale Pikes are stunning. Return to Grasmere by way of Easedale and Easedale Tarn, a spot much loved by Victorian tourists and artists. The challenging option continues with a longer circuit round the head of Easedale, before returning to the valley.
We travel along England's steepest road, over spectacular Wrynose and Hardknott Passes, stopping to tour a 2nd-Century Roman fort. Enjoy a traditional pub lunch in the Eskdale valley. In the afternoon we visit the Irish Sea coast at Ravenglass, then walk through rolling pastures, past the remains of a Roman bath house, for a tour of medieval Muncaster Castle and its world-renowned owl center.
Spend savoring the rugged beauty of Ullswater lake. The easier walk starts at Glenridding, and circles round the head of the lake. We then follow a hillside-hugging path above the shoreline until we reach Howtown, where we cruise back via a 19th-Century lake steamer. The challenging option also goes from Glenridding to Howtown, but taking a higher level route via Boredale Hause and Beda Fell. Before catching the steamer, there is time for a look at the simple but beautiful little church in Martindale.
We drive to the resort jewel of Keswick, and continue to the top of Honister Pass, where our hikes begin. The easier option follows the length of the Borrowdale Valley, descending gently via a delightfully scenic path to the shore of Derwentwater, where we take the launch service back to Keswick. There is time in the town for sightseeing or shopping before the return journey to the hotel.
The challenging option climbs from the top of Honister Pass over high moorland to the summit of Green Gable, possibly continuing from there to the higher summit of Great Gable, the mountain symbol of the National Park. Our Farewell Dinner ends a memorable week.
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