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Rydal Water

5 Beautiful Hikes from Ambleside

5 gorgeous walks which showcase why the southern Lake District is one of Britain's most popular adventure destinations.

Hiking Easy, Moderate, Difficult, Severe, Extreme

Rydal Water
Rydal Water Photo: Alan Harris


With the only "real" mountains in England, the Lake District National Park is a beautiful place, famous for its barren summits, dry stone walls and - of course - deep lakes. The 2 main towns in the Lake District are Keswick (/discover/guidebook/7083) and Ambleside, and they're joined by one of Britain's most spectacular roads, over Dunmail Raise.

Keswick's peaks are the stuff of legend, but there's no doubt that the mountains above Ambleside are amongst the most famous in England. The Langdales, Fairfield, Coniston Old Man - there are celebrated summits everywhere you look when exploring the Ambleside region.

The 5 hikes detailed in this guidebook exemplify what the area is all about, and hiking them will lead you across some fabulous tops. Perhaps the most famous hike of all is the Fairfield Horseshoe; an utterly classic loop which begins and ends in Ambleside village itself. Elsewhere in this guidebook you'll find 2 wonderful journeys through the breathtaking Langdale Valley - Bowfell and Crinkle Crags and the tricky scramble up Jack's Rake; a rite of passage for any aspiring mountaineer. There are also 2 relatively short trips for days when you might only have a small weather window - Lingmoor Fell from Elterwater and Helm Crag. Although short, both take you up and out of the valleys quickly, and offer fantastic summit vistas in return for relatively little effort.

In the highly likely event that these 5 hikes whet your appetite for exploring the Lakes, you'll see from our map that you won't be short of objectives in this most rugged and beautiful of mountain ranges.

Routes included

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