Walks from Bowness

MANY visitors to the Lake District come here to try some walks from Bowness and to follow in the footsteps of Wainwright. He catalogued 214 fell tops, and wrote about them in great detail in seven wonderful guidebooks. Each one is a fabulous challenge.

But we know that our visitors don’t always have the time, or the confidence, to go climbing the high fells. And for those with babies and toddlers in pushchairs, reaching the heights can be a big challenge.

Luckily we’re well placed here at the Burn How to suggest some delightful walks that will give you a real taste of Lakeland, some fantastic views, and maybe the inspiration to go further and higher next time.

  • One of the quickest and easiest viewpoints of all to reach is Biskey Howe, and this is a walk you could try on a spring or summer evening when you’ve just arrived. Head down the hill into the centre of Bowness and follow Lake Road uphill past the shops in the direction of Windermere village, going straight ahead at the roundabout then take the first right onto Helm Road. A short way along here, a steep path leads off to the left which will take you to the Biskey Howe viewpoint, and its plaque highlighting the fells that you can see.
The view from Brant Fell: a favourite walk from Bowness
  • To go a little higher and see even further, Brant Fell is one of the favourite walks from Bowness with our visitors. It’s an easy route of a couple of miles and will take you an hour or so.  From our hotel, go out through the back gate, turn left into the village and then right onto Brant Fell Road by the Royal Oak.  Follow the Dales Way signs up along the road and then through an iron gate and onto open hillside.  Continue on the Dales Way for a short way, keeping an eye for the  signpost towards the viewpoint at Post Knott. From here, follow the  stony lane up towards the knoll of Post Knott, and from here it’s a short uphill walk across to Brant Fell. From  here, you’ll have amazing views across Windermere and the mountains of the Lake District.  From the summit of Brant Fell, descend north and follow the track to the minor road where you’ll need to turn left; follow this for about half a mile then, just past Matson Ground,  you’ll find the  way-marked Dales Way on your left through a kissing gate and back down to Bowness.
Windermere from Orrest Head
  • But if you have a pushchair to manouevre, then Orrest Head is perfect for you. It’s just over a mile from here to the foot of the climb, an easy walk with good pavements that will take you along the seamless link from Bowness to Windermere. Cross the main road near the station where there’s a traffic island, then take the track on the right and  follow the blue signs for the accessible route. You can’t go wrong, and in less than half an hour you’ll be at the top of this perfect little fell, with views of the lake and the high mountains beyond. This is the view that inspired guidebook writer Wainwright on his first visit. Take a break; there are some new benches created by a local blacksmith artist, with a compass incorporated to examine the panorama.
Bowness Bay: use the boats for walks from Bowness
  • We think that Claife shore is the best of all the walks from Bowness for pushchairs, walkers, cyclists, absolutely anyone! Head down from our hotel to the ferry crossing at Ferry Nab. It’s a car ferry too, but the foot passenger fare is only £1. At the other side you can walk just a short way to visit the fabulous Claife Viewing Station with its stained glass framed “window”. Or you could follow the lovely path north, about 1.5 hours,  all the way to Wray Castle, worth a visit any time. (Likewise Joey’s cafe in the grounds.) You can retrace your steps, or for a full day adventure, from Easter onwards you can take the steamer from Wray pier across to Waterhead, and then board one of the larger boats to sail all the way back to Bowness.