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Month: July 2015

The east is easy this summer in Cumbria

It’s August, there’s still plenty of the school summer holidays remaining and there’s still plenty to do when visiting Cumbria.

Have you thought about venturing to the east of the county? It’s home to Penrith, Orton, Shap and Kendal, all easily accessed from the M6 yet minutes away from the the South and Central Lakes and within touching distance of the North Pennines giving visitors the best of both counties.

It truly is a family friendly destination with quiet lanes if you’re a cycling family, plenty of none scary walking routes for small, fell walking novices and also lots of to when it’s a little damp, well worth bearing in mind for a staycation.

family cycling cumbria

Where to stay
Take the kids, take the dogs, it’s the Tebay Services Hotel, friendly to all serving delicious food, affordable and the Tebay Services Farm Shop on the door step for foodie goodie purchasing.

What to do outdoors
Take a bike ride and discover the scenery on the quite routes of the Eden Valley and Orton Fells. LOts of off road, family friendly routes can be found here

rheged penrith attraction

What to do indoors
Head to Rheged, just up the M6 at junction 40. A lovely cafe and on during the school holidays a Minecraft inspired exhibition as well as 70 events, including 3D printing workshops, film making sessions, Minecraft inspired craft and cookery workshops, Bushcraft, survival skills and 3D films. A day will easily to passed, may be even 2!

A fun four days in Ambleside awaits August 20th – 23rd

If you’re in the Ambleside area already or looking for a pre Bank Holiday weekend break then there’s an even bigger reason to visit.

Starting on Thursday August 20th and running until Sunday 23rd is the 4 day Ambleside Festival organised by the Market Square Group. This is the first year of this 4 day event being held on Rothay Park and featuring family fun, music, entertainment and freshly cooked hot and cold food stalls, others traders, groceries, crafts and a beer festival. The event will be open 10am until 6pm daily (Saturday you get an extra hour, closing at 7pm).

ambleside festival
Rothay Park, Ambleside and festival produce

This very popular and beautifully located park is the ideal venue, with the town of Ambleside in touching distance and the fells in the background. Further details can be found here,

Accomodation can be found just across from the park at the Rothay Garth B&B in Ambleside. A few rooms remain during the 4 days from £51 per person per night. Dog friendly bedrooms may be available. Call 015394 32217 for more details or visit

Enjoy an awesome Autumn courtesy of Brimstone in the Lake District

Brimstone Hotel on the Langdale Estate is offering just the tonic for shorter days and cooler temperatures this autumn.

Brimstone suites can keep you warm and cosy without being shut in and enclosed thanks to the large balconies. The high tech temperature systems in the suites work with the temperature outside and the wood burning stoves are just the added cosy touch.

Every guests in every suite has the 24/7 Reading Room to hand where reading can of course be enjoyed but also complimentary beer, wine soft drinks, teas and coffees as well as nibbles, snacks of the sweet and savoury kind. This is of course a very popular room and completely unique to the Lake District.

luxury lake district hotel
Collect+Rest+Read at Brimstone

Brimstone have even thought about keeping warm when guests leave the hotel on days out and have joined forces with Berghaus. The Bootroom is stocked full of waterproofs and other outdoor gear as well as rucksacks and boots for use during guests stays. Such a facility if proving popular with the guests who travel to Brimstone by train, no big bags full of walking gear to travel with. And on the note of trains, one of the very nice hosts will collect guests from Windermere Train Station in Brimstone’s own Land Rover Defender, built for travelling whatever the weather.

Leisurely lounge, leisurely graze and leisurely enjoy the Lake District this autumn. Brimstone luxury hotel rooms start from just £240 per night (if booked 30 days or more in advance) including lavish breakfast which can be served in the room (access to the Reading Room, Defender transport ad Berghaus Bootroom access – all included). Don’t forget the Langdale spa is free to use for Brimstone guests too. Visit to book or call 015394 38062

A Beatrix Potter packed school summer holiday

We all still love Beatrix Potter and the Lake District being her home and inspiration for her books is the place to find out more about this author.

Starting with her home, Hill Top. The house, gardens and shop are a great place to start. The house itself and the Surrounding villages of Near and Far Sawrey are a delight in themselves. The National Trust work tirelessly to keep the gardens looking as they were when Beatrix Potter tended to them and Peter Rabbit was bouncing about. The house is just as it was and the shop a lovely place to buy mementos of the visit.

On the way over to Bowness and The World of Beatrix Potter, have a stop off at the Claife Viewing Station on Windermere’s western shore. Great views and now the added bonus a lovely new tea room, perfect for light refreshments before heading across the lake on the Windermere Ferry.

lake district beatrix potter
Hill Top and a scene from The World of Beatrix Potter atraction

It’s not time to head across the lake and for younger children, the World of Beatrix Potter. Located in the centre of bustling Bowness the attraction is packed full of character models, information, historical pieces and fun things to do. A date for the diary on Bank Holiday Monday, a special event where children can meet Peter Rabbit. He’ll be making an appearance hourly during the day for hugs and photos.
This route can all be done on foot or on bike so it is a great chance to leave the car at the bed and breakfast or hotel for the day.

And Friday could be the day with Hill Top opening up every Friday in August, during the rest of the year, the house is close Friday’s (please note the earlier closing time of 3.30pm on these extra Friday openings).

Accommodation just 5 minutes away from the start of this Beatrix Potter extravaganza day can be found at the Cuckoo Brow Lake District Inn at Far Sawrey. Family rooms available and delicious food for both adults and little people.

Launching of the Tanzania Safari Land Rover Suites

The time has finally come to be able to announce the new Land Rover Suites from Tanzania Safari tour company, A Tent With A view are now officially launched.

An exciting time for all at this tour operator and for both new and returning A Tent With A view safari travellers. The new Land Rover Suites have been designed to enable maximum engagement with the landscape within the Selous Game Reserve and Saadani National Park.

tanzania safari land rover suite
One of the luxury Land Rover Suites

The Land Rover suites really do provide the best of both worlds being able to be driven to the best locations for experiencing the wildlife and animals within the reserves whilst at the same time having all the benefits and luxuries of the camps, Sable Mountain Lodge in Selous and Babs’ Camp in Saadani National Park which includes guides on hand and personal chefs. With relative ease, the suites can be moved at very short notice, when word has been given by the guides, on the potential for witnessing particular and exciting nature action within the reserves.

The suites come complete with solar powered lighting and hot water making them the ultimate in safari glamping. Each reserve offers different experiences and tours and many of the safaris combine the Land Rover Suite experience with other forms of accommodation on the camps. To view the full list of Tanzania safaris offered by A Tent With A View visit,

An artistic August in Grange over Sands

Have a break from the norm of staying at and visiting the South Lakes and venture slightly west this August and to the Edwardian town of Grange over Sands.

Grange is easily accessed by car or rail and there is plenty to see and do this August with a distinctive artists theme.

Art is very popular in the region with events, exhibitions and notable art societies such as the Grange and District Art Society and just up the road in the village of Cartmel is also one. August 11 until 15 is when the Cartmel Art Society will be holding their annual exhibitions, 10am until 6pm daily at the Village Hall in Cartmel. This a great chance to see and meet local artists and purchase very reasonably priced, original works of art. The works for sale will be in a variety of media and subjects although the landscapes are always the first sales due to the plethora of subject matter and inspiration found in this region for the artists.

cartmel art society
Loughrigg Tarn (Pastel) by Doreen Hannigan, Cartmel Art Society

Onto the arts of a different type and at Grange’s Victoria Hall one of the Lake District Summer Music International Festival events is being held on Wednesday 12 August. This Grade II listed building is set to be an awe inspiring backdrop for Ursula Smith (cello) Emiko Tadenuma (piano).The full programme starting with Beethoven Twelve Variations in F major on Ein Mädchen oder Weibchen, Op.66 can be found here

victoria hall grange over sands
Built in 1901, the Victoria Hall in Grange

In general, Grange is a delightful holiday or short break destination having a lovely town to walk around and excellent cafes and places to stay to the best of both worlds with Morecambe Bay and the fells. Accommodation is reasonably priced for the quality such as Bay Villa Bed & Breakfast on Grange over Sands Main Street from £110 per room per night with lots of goodies and extras and large rooms with views.

Bookings now being taken on new luxury Windermere hotel suites

Anyone walking along College Road in Windermere will not have failed to see something quite extensive happening next door to the Applegarth Villa Hotel & Restaurant. Alan & Suzanne Mumford owners are currently converting this building, The Coach House, into 7 luxury hotel suites to complement the 15 rooms in the main hotel.

applegarth hotel windermere
Applegarth Villa Hotel & Coach House

The new suites have been designed to offer the very best in luxury hotel accommodation in the area. There will be three different suites types, AV Suites, Garden Suites and one Duplex each with stunning fells views and complete peace and tranquillity despite being in the centre of Windermere Village. Order drinks to be delivered to the room by the butler or perhaps choose to dine on the terrace or balcony for either breakfast or dinner and there is still the chance to dine in the Applegarth Restaurant next door too.

view windermere
View from the hotel & suites

Most suites will have a private hot tub and all either a terrace and/or balcony. Each will have luxurious bathrooms with walk in drench showers and most with spa baths, mood lighting throughout, king sized beds and gadgets enabling guests own music to be played throughout via any device.

windermere hotel luxuries
Hot tubs+champagne=perfect combination!

The Garden Suites are particularly exciting offering accessible accommodation and/or dog friendly. After doing extensive research, Alan & Suzanne noticed there was a lack of luxury accessible accommodation in the Southern Lakes and so the Garden Suites were born.


And dog friendly doesn’t get much more luxurious either. Four legged friends can pre-order food and treats for the stay and the private entrances enable easy, direct access to each suite.

Additional luxuries will include coffee machines, fresh flowers, AV chocolates, summer/winter bathrobes, fresh fruit baskets and luxury toiletries.

Booking are now being taken for the suites which will be launched on December 1st 2015 and they can be booked by calling 015394 43206 or online via

Outstanding autumn offers on luxury Coniston cottage

It may be the height of summer but that doesn’t mean an autumn break is out of the minds. It could be time off can’t be had until them or like so many, the preference to take a break  out of the school summer holidays.

Whatever the reason now could be time to enjoy a little (well actually quite a lot) of luxury for less. Tent Lodge, the Visit England 5 Star Gold holiday poperty, sleeps up to 13 people and 2 well behaved dogs (out of school holiday periods of which so much of autumn is). Located on the edge of Coniston Water with extensive grounds reaching to the lake, private jetty and mooring and just a miles stroll to Coniston Village.

Children have the ideal landscape to play in, so do the adults who also get to experience staying in an historic, Georgian property with an interior to die for. It is said on countless occasions that the four legged members of the party never want to leave either.

tent lodge cottage coniston
The view of complete luxury when staying at Tent Lodge, ConistonWater.

The beauty of Tent Lodge (aside from the location, interior, facilities of course!) is the flexible choice of holiday durations. Choose from a 3, 4, 5 or 6 night break. To give a perspective on the amount that can be saved take a 6 night break commencing Friday September 11. Full rate £3400, the amazing autumn offer enabling up to 13 guests stay for just £2550, we know you don’t need this working out but just to clarify, that is a show stopping £850 discount.

September is such a good time to visit the Lake District and Coniston with its tree lined lake has to be one of the best examples of an autumn landscape to be had in the region.Take advantage of this great offer asap before the weeks get booked up by clicking here,

The growth of the luxury Lake District

Despite the Lake District and Cumbria not having a 5 Star graded hotel. it probably won’t be long before one either arrives or a 4 Star increases its grading.

But the lack of an official 5 Star hotel is more than made up for in the choice of extremely high quality 4 Star hotels, 5 Star guest accommodation such as B&B’s, inns and smaller hotel style venues and one of the largest concentration of 5 Star self catering properties in the whole of the UK.

The Lake District National Park has been home to some internationally award winning hotels for some years now but as the world food revolution continues to rise, so has the need for this stunning venues to bring the food offerings in line with the accommodation. This is what so many of the hotels, inns and guest accommodation operators have been up to the past few years and with amazing effect.

The Lake District and Cumbria can most definitely offer 5 Star food starting of course with the amount of produce available on its doorstep. This is produce that is so good is is revered in the capital of food London and around the world. The regeneration of the food industry in Cumbria has meant high profile chefs coming back to their roots, relocating, really wanting to cook in this county and visitors can’t get enough of it.

So keep posted on this blog for all the latest regarding luxury travel, accommodation and food in the Lake District and Cumbria right here on Distinction Travel.