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England’s largest lake, Windermere is an icon of the Lake District. It stretches from busy Ambleside, with its many outdoor shops, cafes and restaurants, at the northern tip, down to quiet Newby Bridge, 10.5 miles away to the south. In between, the B&B filled town of Windermere leads down to busy Bowness on the lakeshore; whilst it can feel overrun with tourists and tacky souvenir shops, it offers many ways to explore the lake, including lake cruises, boat hire and rowing boats, and a ferry to take you to the quite western shore and Beatrix Potter’s house of Hill Top.

Wonderful views of the lake well away from the crowds can be found by heading into the gentle hills on both the east and west shores.