Garden Breaks based at the Burn How Garden Hotel

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Some of the most beautiful and spectacular gardens of the Lake District were designed by a remarkable man, Thomas Mawson.
In his career, he designed our gardens here at Burn How

Some of the most beautiful and spectacular gardens of the Lake District were designed by a remarkable man, Thomas Mawson. He was a plantsman and landscape architect who ran a plant nursery business in Windermere in the 1880s, and then concentrated on garden design. His first big project was at Graythwaite Hall, near Newby Bridge, now a wedding venue. He also designed the gardens at Holehird, Brockhole and Holker Hall, and then, in 1909 the magnificent formal garden at Rydal Hall. He went on to work throughout Europe  and Canada, and he advised on the development of the Smoky Mountains National Park in America.

And early in his career, he designed our gardens here at Burn How. Previous owners of the property removed a lot of the planting when they built the garden rooms, but we have been restoring the gardens as much as possible, and we’ve been winning prizes – Windermere in Bloom Winners for 2023.

Click here to read ‘The Lost Garden of Bowness’

The Burn How experience allows you stay here in this beautiful setting and visit the other Mawson gardens as well.

Here is a suggested itinerary, while taking advantage of our ‘4 nights for the price of 3’ break – which includes the best breakfast in Bowness each morning and complimentary tea and cake every afternoon of your stay.

Day 1: Arrival, explore the grounds and gardens here, and wander down to Bowness Bay.

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Day 2. Drive to Holehird, and then Rydal Hall (and Rydal Mount) with an optional visit to Brockhole


Day 3: Drive south to Holker Hall

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Day 4: Explore Lake Windermere from the water!

Cruises from 45 minutes to 3 hours depart throughout the day or you can spend all day on and around the lake with a Freedom of the Lake ticket. All departing a few minutes stroll you’re your Burn How base.

Burn How Boat On Lake

Holehird, run by the Lakeland Horticultural Society, is the nearest, just a mile north of Bowness off the A591. It’s open daily through the year, and there’s a recommended minimum donation of £5 to the charity as an entry fee. Every Wednesday morning from May to September visitors may join a guided walk, led by one of the volunteer gardeners.

Brockhole is the Lake District National Park Centre, on the A591 three miles north of Bowness. The grounds, gardens, gift shop and cafe are open daily from 10-4, free of charge, but there is a parking fee.

Rydal Hall, six miles north of Bowness, is a splendid house dating back to 1650, now a conference and retreat centre for the Diocese of Carlisle. The Mawson gardens are open daily, and can be contrasted with the naturalistic garden created by William Wordsworth at Rydal Mount, just across the road.

Holker Hall, at Cark in Cartmel near to Morecambe Bay is a huge estate of gardens and woodland along with the stately home of the Cavendish family, and is open on certain days in the winter, and daily in the summer.