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Photo by Tayla Halfacre

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The 5 Best Things I Did In Cumbria, England

The Lake District is a beautiful region in Cumbria, England, adorned with mountains, greenery, and of course, lakes. It is the home of Romantic poet William Wordsworth and Beatrix Potter: the writer and illustrator of the well-known The Tale of Peter Rabbit. I recently visited this wonder, and it was truly one of the most beautiful places I had ever seen. Below are five of my favorite places I visited for anyone interested in visiting the incredible area.

1. Scafell Pike

Scafell Pike is the highest mountain in England, with an altitude of 901m (about 3000 ft). To reach the top, there are various easy routes and some harder ones where you might have to scramble and exert extra force. Either way, the view is stunning and is worth all of the effort. I was pretty nervous before we climbed, but despite my nerves, I ended up thoroughly enjoying my adventure. If you want to conquer your fear of heights or want to enjoy a really good view, this just might be the place for you. Mountains are so often used as metaphors for overcoming a challenge, and I can definitely see why. According to IberiaNature, Romantic poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge was supposedly one of the first “outsider” to climb Scafell Pike. It took him 9 days to do it though! So definitely check that you are taking the right route.

Scafell Pike, Image by Tayla Halfacre

2. Literary Destinations: Dove Cottage, Greta Hall, Allan Bank

As previously mentioned, William Wordsworth lived in Grasmere: a village in the Cumbria county. I visited the home that he lived in with his sister Dorothy and his wife Mary for eight years: Dove Cottage. Wordsworth once wrote about Grasmere: “…The multitude of little rocky hills / …Cottages of mountain stone / Clustered like stars some few, but single most / And lurking dimly in their shy retreats.” He writes of the “perpetual streams” and “silence in the sky” in his first part of The Recluse. Grasmere is a quaint town, filled with culture and many shops for ‘pottering’ around, and it is definitely a must-see! There is also a museum at Dove Cottage and several items within the cottage that belonged to Wordsworth himself. In Grasmere there is another dreamy home of William Wordsworth’s owned by the National Trust, Allan Bank which is worth a look if you’re a Wordsworth fan.

Dove Cottage, Image by Tayla Halfacre

However, if you are an avid literature fan such as myself it may be worth a trip to see Greta Hall in Keswick. While it is now a Bed and Breakfast, it was once occupied by Robert Southey (a Romantic poet) and Coleridge (yes the guy who scrambled up Scafell Pike).

3. Hadrian’s Wall

Hadrian’s Wall is a must-see historical landmark located in Cumbria. According to Chronicle Live, the building for the wall started around AD 122. It was built when Roman Emperor Hadrian ordered for it to be built between Roman Britain and Scotland. The landmark is incredibly interesting for those who, in particular, enjoy history (there is a whole museum dedicated to historical artifacts). For those who do not, the views are still pretty spectacular as you can see for yourself below.

A view from Hadrian’s Wall, Image by Tayla Halfacre

4. Aira Force 

Aira Force is owned by the National Trust and is located in Penrith. It is a place of trails and beautiful waterfalls, aka a place to experience the divinity of the Lake District to a greater extent. It was undoubtedly one of the nicest places that I visited during this trip. It is great for long walks and there are some really good picnic spots.

5. Wray Castle

Wray Castle is a neo-gothic castle beside Lake Windamere. It was built in 1840 for a retired surgeon. However, it is widely known for being where Beatrix Potter spent her summer holiday when she was sixteen. Despite being built rather late, Wray Castle is still a lovely place to visit. The view from within is stunning. Inside, one can learn about Beatrix Potter and her association with the place as well as the reasonings behind why it was built. I definitely recommend it to any fan of Potter and anybody who likes a nice view.

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Tayla is UK based. She also has works in KILORAN magazine.

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