Grasmere is one of the most popular destinations in the Lake District and it’s not difficult to see why. The village is set in an idyllic location, boasting spectacular mountain views and within walking distance of the lake from which it gets its name.
The region has become synonymous with art and literature over the years, with many of the greats calling Grasmere home at some point in their careers. The scenery has provided inspiration for numerous paintings and books, with William Wordsworth calling it “loveliest spot that man hath ever found”.
Today, visitors to flock to Grasmere to enjoy a peaceful day in The Lakes. It’s a wonderful place to spend a leisurely afternoon, perusing the shops and visiting historic attractions to learn more about the area’s industrial past.
Things to do in Grasmere
No trip to Grasmere is complete without a trip to Dove Cottage – the home of acclaimed poet, William Wordsworth. As you walk around the grounds, you’ll be transported back in time, and will experience first-hand, the magnificent scenery that inspired some of his most famous work.
Plenty of original features within the cottage have been preserved for visitors to enjoy and moments from his journals have been recreated to give an insight into his home and family life. Outside you can take some time to stroll around the and admire the seasonal flowers and views over the surrounding fells.
A new museum has recently been unveiled at Town End, showcasing an impressive collection of personal letters and handwritten manuscripts. There’s also a range of hands-on activities for visitors to try, including a printing press and ink writing station.
There are some wonderful walks to enjoy around Grasmere village, but our favourites can be found near the lake. The lake is relatively small in comparison to others in the region, meaning it’s possible to walk around the circumference in just a couple of hours. The well signposted route is approximately 3.5 miles long and suitable for families. The terrain changes throughout the hike and it’s possible to extend the walk to encompass Rydal Lake.
Our favourite time to visit Grasmere is during the autumn months when the leaves turn various shades of orange and brown. The reflections on the water are simply spectacular and it really is a landscape photographers dream. Motorboats are not permitted on Grasmere, which means it’s quieter than neighbouring lakes. It’s a lovely spot to enjoy a picnic, kayak or swim.
St Oswald’s Church
Visitors interested in history should take some time to visit St Oswalds’s Church – the oldest building in Grasmere. It is thought to date back to the 14th century and was one of just a handful of buildings in the area for a number of years.
William Wordsworth and his wife Mary’s grave stones can be found within the grounds, if you’d like to pay your respects. The churchyard is a peaceful spot to gather your thoughts and enjoy the carpet of daffodils in the spring.
Photo credit: Dave Wallis
If you’d like to indulge in a spot of retail therapy during your day out in Grasmere, there are plenty of stores to peruse. You’ll find a variety of independent shops selling homeware, clothing, gifts and crafts as well produce from local makers.
Art lovers will find a small selection of studios selling beautiful artwork and pottery. Pick up something special to commemorate your holiday and remind you of this wonderful part of the world.
There are also a number of outdoor stores, making it a great stop for hikers or campers needing to stock up on essentials.
Food & drink
There are some delicious food and drink options to choose from in Grasmere, if you fancy dining out during your trip. Pop into one of independently owned pubs and café’s for a tasty bite to eat, or treat yourself to something special, in the Michelin Starred restaurant, The Forest Side.
We highly recommend stopping by Sarah Nelson’s Grasmere Gingerbread shop to sample the famed sweet treat. The recipe dates back to the mid 1800’s and continues to delight food lovers from all over the world.
Photo credit: Dave Wallis
Grasmere plays host to a number of events throughout the year, including the popular Grasmere Sports festival. This traditional gathering dates back to the 19th century and showcases a range of Lakeland sports, including Westmorland wrestling, fell running and hound trails.
Over the course of the day there are plenty of displays to watch and opportunities to join in. It is a fantastic event that has something to keep the whole family entertained
Getting to Grasmere
It takes around 30 minutes to drive to Grasmere from our Lake District touring and glamping park. The route passes through Ambleside and Rydal, offering lovely views for much of the drive
Grasmere does get busy and parking can get tricky, so we recommend arriving early whenever possible.
How to find Grasmere
Opening times: Always open
Distance from park
6.6 miles (approx. 19 mins)