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By Parkdean Resorts on 17/01/2022

If you’re looking for a cheap holiday in the UK, what could be better than a walking break? With free fresh air and exercise in abundance, it’s a great way to see the best of the UK without blowing the budget on attractions or activities. Plus with great self catering accommodation available at our parks, a staycation on a shoestring couldn’t be easier.

A family at the peak of a hill in the Lake District

The Lake District is a renowned destination for walking holidays - complete with rocky peaks, picturesque valleys and miles of luscious woodland scenery, it's really no surprise why. Walking holidays are the perfect way to get away cheaply and be at one with nature fast, at all times of the year.

Whatever your preferred level of walking adventure, we can guarantee that there’s a cheap walking holiday in the lake district for you. Read on to find just the tonic for the best walking holidays in the Lake District.

Things to consider when choosing your route

Before booking your walking trip to the lakes, you’ll want to consider your group's walking abilities. Are you heading out on a hiking holiday with your family? Will there be small children in tow? Or are you planning a walking holiday with a bunch of seasoned pro walkers?

It’s important to plan your route carefully and ensure that you’re properly prepared. It can be tempting to head straight out on your adventure, but trust us, fine tune planning can make for a much more enjoyable walk.

You will need to consider the following:


For longer trails you’ll want to ensure that you have packed plenty of snacks, drinks and maybe even a picnic - there won’t always be a stop off for refreshments so it’s best to be prepared for when hunger strikes. You might also want to consider devising a circular walk, where the end is back at the start, likely where you have parked your car.


You’ll also need to consider if the walk is actually suitable for you and the rest of your party. It’s important to check the walk grade descriptions and choose a walk that’s suitable for everyone attending. You will also need to consider how difficult the walk may get if the weather worsens - try not to be over ambitious.

Flat vs ascended trails

There are three different types of walks you can choose from:

  • Easy - walks on mainly flat terrains which are suitable for everyone
  • Moderate - moderate walks are mainly suitable for those with country walking experience and a good level of fitness. There may be some steep paths, open countryside and rougher terrain
  • Strenuous - strenuous walks are designed for walkers with an above average level of fitness. Walks may involve some steep climbs and full days in the hills

The terrain

Research the walk and try to determine what surface you’re going to be walking on. You’ll need to consider the shoes you’re going to wear - for tougher walks, opt for walking boots to protect your ankle and prevent slips and trips.


If you’re going on a solo walk, make sure that you thoroughly research the trail and check the weather before heading out. Make a plan before setting off and share it with someone so they are aware of your location. Remain vigilant at all times, use your awareness and trust your intuition.


A map is essential and it’s important that you know how to use both a map and a compass. It's important to pack the right OS map for the walk you’re doing. You don’t want to rely completely on your mobile phone or GPS, as they can get lost or run out of power or service.

A close up of a pair of walking boots

Remain cautious and refrain from being over ambitious, but don’t be put off by the rain - the Lakes are called the Lakes for a reason, so it's important to keep in mind that it does rain a LOT. Ensure that you prepare for all weathers - whatever time of year you’re heading out on a hiking holiday, you’ll want to make sure that you are prepared. Waterproof outerwear, fleece layers, walking boots or wellies are always a good idea. And remember that comfort is always key - so wear clothes you can move easily in. For little ones it might be a good idea to bring a change of clothes to ensure they don’t catch a chill.

Remember to pack a basic first aid kit, a torch, sunglasses, sunscreen and change for the phone box (there might not always be service in rural areas).

Check for danger points

The main danger points to look out for include:

  • Wind and rain
  • Wet weather
  • Road and train lines
  • Coastal dangers
  • Steep slopes and altitude
  • Winter weather
  • Daylight
  • Escape routes and emergency contacts
  • Equipment

Best walks for beginners and families

Family walk in the Lake District

Of course, not every picturesque walk is suited for little legs, pushchairs or beginners. There are a selection of family-friendly routes that offer the same highs you’d expect from a strenuous fell walk, but instead with manageable terrain, plenty of breaks, and short routes perfect for young children. Spark your love for the Lakes with one of the following walks that the whole family will manage:

Orrest Head, Windermere

This 3 mile walk is the perfect introduction to the Lake District fells and will take around 30-45 minutes to complete. Conveniently situated nearby the Windermere Hotel and railway station, this picturesque circular walk takes you through the woods to the summit. At the summit, you can capture the stunning views of Windermere - here you can decide whether you want to head back the same way or head along the lane to your woodland starting point. Windermere is complete with plenty of cafes and delicatessens for you to stop and get a bite to eat and maybe a tipple after a rewarding walk.

Difficulty rating: 1/5

Latrigg, Keswick

Just two miles long, this is one of the smallest fells in the Lake District, and also one of the easiest walks, so it’s the perfect walk when you’re a beginner or have your little ones in tow. However, it’s important to note that the path can be steep in some places so may not be the best location for a pushchair.

Difficulty rating: 1/5

Mirehouse and Gardens

Situated on the shores of Bassenthwaite Lake, the Mirehouse and Gardens supplies endless walking opportunities through its gardens and woods. Complete with a family nature trail, a pine wood trail, lakeside walks and four different adventure playgrounds for your little ones to enjoy!

Difficulty rating: 1/5

Catbells, Derwentwater

This moderately difficult 3.5 mile walk is one of the most popular fells in the Lake District and for good reason. With stunning views of the lakes, valleys and surrounding mountains. This walk features a short steep ascent with some minor scrambling.

Difficulty rating: 2/5

Ravenglass and Eskdale

This 7 mile walk, is a must-do route for families. Eskdale Green is complete with a Japanese Garden, pretty woodland, and views of the fells.

Difficulty rating: 2/5

Castlerigg stone Circle to Low Rigg

This is a 4.5 mile walk which will take approximately 2 hours. Start your walk from the Circle itself and savour the backdrop of Helvellyn and High Street. Settle down by the Tewart Tarn for a peaceful break, before heading left towards the Helvellyn Range which will eventually take you towards the Low Rigg. When you reach the summit you will be rewarded with stunning panoramic views of Skiddaw, Blenathra, Threlkeld Common, Whinlatter, and the Helvellyn range.

Difficulty rating: 2/5

Best walks for couples

Couple piggybacking across a stream on a hike

If you’re looking to head out on a romantic hike with your better half, the Lake District is the perfect location. With plenty of romantic walks on offer for you to explore. So what are you waiting for? Dust off your walking boots and head to one of the following places:

Ingleton falls

If you’re looking for a relaxing and romantic walk, look no further than Ingleton Falls just a short journey from the South Lakes. With 6 different waterfalls to enjoy, this 5 mile picturesque walk is evidence you don’t need to head abroad to enjoy exotic waterfalls. Suitable for all walking and fitness levels, the route is complete with plenty of different coffee and food vans to stop off at on your way around.

Difficulty rating: 2/5

Darling Fell

Known as one of the smaller and quieter low-level fells, Darling Fell offers spectacular views of Loweswater lake and is great to spend some peaceful time together. The walk is around 2 miles and will take around an hour and a half to complete, depending on your pace. Its location makes for a perfect spot for a romantic walk.

Difficulty rating: 2/5

Colwith Force

It doesn’t get much more romantic than a waterfall in the Lakes. Situated on the River Brathay, the waterfall falls at a total of 40 feet. This walk can be as long or as short as you like, but if you’re looking to complete the whole walk, it’s around 5 miles long, and a great place to take in the natural beauty of the Lakes.

Difficulty rating: 2/5

Wast Water

Known to be one of the popular waters in the Lake District, Wast Water blends a stunning landscape with picturesque view. It’s situated next to Scafell Pike, and is around 7.5 miles in length, taking around 3 hours and 26 minutes to complete.

Difficulty rating: 3/5

Best walks for singles

Walker enjoying the view over a lake in the Lake District

The Old Man of Coniston

If you’re heading on a solo walk and looking for something a little more challenging, The Old Man of Coniston is perfect for those with a little bit of stamina as the mountain is 792m high! The descent to the top may be steep, however once you’re there, you can expect glorious views from the top.

The walk will take around 6 hours in total, but you can reward yourself with a nice cold drink at the The Sun pub in Coniston afterwards.

Difficulty: 5/5

Helvellyn via Thirlmere

If you’re a walking enthusiast, why not climb the 950m, steep slope of Helvellyn? Once you’ve reached the top you’ll be rewarded with a spectacular view.

Difficulty: 5/5

Hartsop via Hayeswater

For something a little less strenuous, after a stroll around the Hartsop village highstreet, follow the walking route to Hayeswater - a former reservoir-turned-mountain tarn. At the end of the walk there’s a stone beacon which is well worth seeing. This walk will take you at least two hours and it's important to keep in mind that there's not much in the way of refreshments on the way around.

Difficulty: 1/5

Best walks for dogs

Woman hiking with a dog on top of a mountain in the Lake District

If you’re heading on a walking holiday with your four-legged friend in tow, there are plenty of dog-friendly routes to savour in the Lake District.

Derwentwater Circuit

This pet-friendly 10 mile loop starts at the picturesque town of Keswick, through the Landscape of Derwentwater and its surrounding fells. Expect flat terrain, lakeside paths and ancient woodland trails throughout. You can even stop for a tasty treat at the dog-friendly spot of Lingholm Kitchen at the end of it.

Difficulty: 1/5

Scout Scar

Starting near the town of Kendal, this 1.5 mile length hike, exudes outstanding panoramic views from the top. The terrain of this walk is predominantly flat with well maintained trails. Stop off for a cold drink at the pet-friendly Factory Tap pub.

Difficulty: 1/5

Castle Crag

Castle Crag is a relatively easy walking dog-friendly route with no stiles - and just under 3 miles in total. It’s important to keep your dog on a lead, however, as there are sheep about.

Difficulty: 2/5

Best walks for accessibility

A wheelchair user enjoying a walk on an accessible trail with his partner and dog

Rydal Water and Cave, Ambleside, Cumbria

This 3 mile walk is wheelchair and pushchair accessible. There are plenty of different directions you can take from the starting point, including the Loughrigg Terrace and the Rydal Water and Cave. Exploring the cave makes for a wonderful family-friendly experience - after looking around you can take the path back towards White Moss or Grasmere Lakeshore. Dogs are welcome on this trail but must be kept on a lead.

Difficulty : 1/5

Tarn Hows Circular Walk

Both dog-friendly and accessible, at just under 2 miles in length, Tarn Hows can be enjoyed by all. There are mobility scooters called ‘Trampers’ that are available for those who need them - call in advance to book. Here you can explore the glorious grassy moores and lovely views of Lakeland Fells.

Difficulty : 1/5

Keswick to Threlkeld Railway Path

Here you can park at the Keswick or Threlkeld end and enjoy a walk along the 3 miles of accessible path which is fully tarmaced and perfect for buggies and wheelchairs alike. What’s more, whilst you’re there, there are plenty of places to stop to eat a picnic.

Difficulty : 1/5

What to pack for a walking holiday in the Lake District

Before you set off on your long-awaited walking holiday, you’ll want to ensure that you’ve packed the following:

  • Walking boots - ideally you want your boots to provide sturdy ankle support, a waterproof membrane and be made from a high-quality leather to ensure maximum durability
  • Backpack
  • Maps & compass
  • Water bottle
  • Sun protection
  • Snacks - you never know when you might need an extra boost of energy
  • Small first aid kit
  • Blister patches
  • Extra layers of clothing and waterproofs
  • Torch

Tips to prepare for your walking holiday

Once you’ve purchased everything you need for a successful and enjoyable walking holiday, there are also a few other things you may want to consider:

  • If your walking boots are new, make sure you break them in first - head out on a couple of trial walks with them first to avoid them causing blisters on your trip
  • Trim your toenails - this will also any unwanted rubbing or pain at the front of your boots
  • Don’t forget to pack the tupperware - eating out is great but not always widely available on your walk. Preparing a picnic can help both save money and add to the fun!

You'll find a wide range of self-catering accommodation available at our three holiday parks in the Lake District, including Fallbarrow, White Cross Bay and Limefitt. Nestled around Windermere in the heart of the Lakes, they're perfectly located for your next walking adventure.

Explore more walks in the Lake District on our blog.