Things to Do in the Lake District: Cycling

The Lake District is the perfect place to go for a healthy holiday because there are hundreds of activities in varying environments for you to enjoy. You could try out a kayak on Lake Windermere, go for a hike in the picturesque peaks of Langdale or you could a rent a bicycle and experience the Lake District like never before.

In this article, we talk about some of the best routes in the Lake District for anyone looking to get out on their bikes during their stay.

ROUTE 1 - Windermere to Staveley

The route from Windermere to Staveley is a long one but it’s also very easy and fun for beginners or casual cyclists. This route does involve some road cycling so it is important to exercise caution, but overall this is a very relaxed cycle route that will certainly add a lot of memories to your stay in the Lake District.

This route starts in Windermere at the left onto Ellerthwaite Road which is marked as the cycle route to Ings. Continue to follow all cycling signs towards Ings until you reach the first left on Holly Road, take it, and then continue until you need to turn left onto Lickbarrow Road.

The next section requires some concentration, as you fork left onto the B5284 and then onto a minor road which is signed as a cycle route to Ings. You need your wits about you as you approach Outrun Nook to safely navigate the blind bend which leads to Borwick Fold. Following this, you are back on the safety of pedestrian and cycle tracks following footpath signs to Dales Way.

Continuing past New Hall Farm, you will come to a crossroads which will take you to Staveley, past a train station which you could take to get back to Windermere if you are too tired to complete the journey back which largely follows the NCN6.

The entire circular route is expected to take between 2 hours and 30 minutes and 4 hours, so travel well prepared with snacks and drinks to keep you going.

ROUTE 2 – Tour of Lake Windermere

If you’re staying in our luxury self-catering accommodation in the Lake District, Windermere, then perhaps a tour of your favourite lake could be high on your list of things to do. If so, then you may enjoy a leisurely cycle tour circling its shores.

The route largely follows back roads and cycle tracks, but it does include a few sections on main roads. It takes between three to five hours to complete and covers no less than twenty-two miles so be ready for a long day and difficult if you’re not a confident cyclist. You can read more about this route in this pdf which also has a map to help you navigate the route.

ROUTE 3 – Windermere to Kendal

If you’re looking for a more challenging ride, we’d suggest taking on the Windermere to Kendal cycling route. The distance of this ride is 11.5 miles one way, so a round trip of 23 miles, which is ideal for those who are used to cycling pretty regularly. If you’re not quite up to a 23 mile cycle, you could always hop on a train when you get to Kendal and travel back to Windermere in style.

This ride promises some of the most stunning views you’re likely to find in England as you follow the country roads which run alongside the River Kent. You simply follow the dedicated cycling route out of Windermere and head towards Kendal via Staveley and Burneside. If you find yourself getting off track, keep an eye out for the National Route 6 signs along the way and you can’t go far wrong. You can find a full breakdown of the reverse route here.

Along the route there are plenty of appealing stop offs, including several cafés and quaint pubs where you can enjoy a spot of lunch and a refreshing drink. If you are a cycling enthusiast, then this route has the ideal stop off for you, when you arrive in Staveley you simply must visit Wheelbase, the largest bike store in the UK.

Where Can I Rent My Bike?

Of course, you can hardly enjoy your cycling adventure without a bicycle, and you may be averse to bringing your own bike from home if you’re travelling from a great distance to spend your holiday in Windermere. There are plenty of options to rent a bike in Windermere though, with the most notable being the country Lanes Cycles Centre next to the railway station and Booths. This will be where the majority rent their bikes from in Windermere, but for a little variety, there is also the Total Adventure Bike Hire shop a short walking distance from the railway station and even the Windermere Canoe and Kayak – only a ten-minute walk from your self-catering accommodation in Windermere Marina Village.

We welcome any queries regarding further hints and tips on things to do in Windermere and the Lakes beyond, so don’t hesitate to get in touch with us about your holiday plans if no answers are forthcoming from a Google search, or simply if you want some local knowledge. Cycling is a lot of fun, but nothing quite compares to cycling amongst the beauty of Windermere when the sun is out.

cycling in the lake district
riding in the lakes