Buttermere Lake

buttermere sunset

Buttermere Lake

In the north western area of the Lake District National Park is Buttermere. Pay a visit to the lake here and you can enjoy a wonderful round-the-lake walk surrounded by ancient woodland, a wealth of wildlife and towering fells.

The lake itself is one of the deepest in the area. Here are its vital statistics: 1.24 miles (2 km) long, 620 yards (570 m) wide and 75 feet (23 m) deep.

Walking around Buttermere

Take a stroll around Buttermere on a clear day and you’ll be rewarded with some stunning scenery to enjoy. The walk itself is easy with level ground all around the route. It is a perfect place to retreat to when the wind is blowing on the fells above. And on a still day you will struggle to leave your camera in your pocket. To get there it is thirty minutes from Keswick on the Borrowdale Road (B5289). Park at Buttermere Village and take a walk down to the lakeside.

If you’re here with children we recommend heading in an anti-clock direction. This will mean that they can enjoy playing and den-building in the woodland area near the start. Then they can explore the exciting short tunnel section, cut through a crag by the Victorians, as they complete the route. Be aware that there is a short on-road section of the walk which is around 600 metres in length at the southern edge of the lake.

The total round lake walk distance is 4.5 miles. If you have little legs and a stop or two to factor in then allow up to 3 hours to complete the circuit.


There are sandpipers in the area. This means that a short section of the circuit is closed off between April and June each year during their nesting season. This allows for their nests to remain undisturbed by walkers as chicks are being raised. Fortunate visitors can also spot herons and even red squirrels.

How to find Buttermere Lake

Opening times: Always open

Distance from park
30.1 miles (approx. 1 hour 6 mins)

Dog Friendly location Dog friendly