The Lake District Explorer
3 day tour

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Enjoy the poetry of nature, learn to love England’s most inspirational landscapes, and follow in the footsteps of artists and writers.

Tour map

Highlights

Lakes
Walks
National Parks
Waterfalls
Literature
Mountains
Boat Cruises

Places you explore


Ullswater - The second largest lake in the English Lake District is famous for its sublime, tranquil beauty.

Aira Force Waterfall - A lovely stone bridge crosses the fabulously flowing waterfalls.

Castlerigg Stone Circle - It’s like a miniature Stonehenge. Although you can decide whether it’s more beautiful.

Lake Windermere - You can choose to wander the shores or put on your sailing hat and go for a cruise.

Derwent Water - This gorgeous location was used in Star Wars - The Force Awakens. But the lasers and spaceships seem a million miles away from this peaceful area.

Honister Pass - Simply relax and enjoy the gorgeous views of the monumental mountains.


Your journey


You may get a little poetic in the Lake District.

The lakes are so moving you’ll want to compose verses about their beauty. The silent Castlerigg standing stones are so mysterious you'll think about them for days. And the mountains are so magnificent you'll get lyrical about their rugged peaks and soothing slopes.

Take this tour and discover how and why this gorgeous area has inspired England's greatest poets and writers.


If you love this itinerary but want to start in England, this tour also departs from London and Manchester .


Tour Details

Starts
Check-in closes at 08:30 (tour departs at 08:45) - Edinburgh Bus Station Pick Up, Gate J and Gate K, Edinburgh Bus Station, St Andrew Square, Edinburgh, EH1 3DQ
Finishes (approx.)
19:00 - Edinburgh Bus Station Drop Off, Gate J and Gate K, Edinburgh Bus Station, St Andrew Square, Edinburgh, EH1 3DQ
Luggage
You’re restricted to 20kg (44lbs) of luggage per person. This may consist of a small bag for onboard personal items and a larger suitcase or rucksack.
Discounts

Students, seniors over 60, and children between 5 and 15 (unfortunately, we don't carry children under 5 years old)

Important information
  • Pack your waterproof clothing and walking shoes
  • Attraction tickets may need to be purchased in advance. More information is provided in your booking confirmation e-mail
Tour inclusions
  • Transport in a 16 seat Mercedes mini-coach
  • Air conditioning as standard
  • The stories and services of an English-speaking driver-guide
Tour exclusions
  • Entry fees to visitor attractions
  • Tour accommodation

Itinerary

Day 1

  • Travel over the smooth rolling hills of the Scottish Borders
  • Explore the ancient ruins of Penrith Castle
  • Take as many photographs as you can at ‘England’s most beautiful lake’, Ullswater
  • Relax in the market town of Keswick

You depart Edinburgh and head South through the Scottish Borders. You can enjoy the gorgeous rolling expanses of the Galloway Hills and Southern Uplands as we travel to our first stop of the day, the Victorian spa town of Moffat.

From Moffat you continue south over the border into England and head to the historic Cumbrian market town of Penrith. Here you have the chance to enjoy lunch and explore the imposing ruins of Penrith Castle. This uniquely coloured castle played a key role in defending the border from invading Scots.

After lunch we enter the Lake District National Park and travel along the northern shores of Ullswater. This lake is often described as England’s most beautiful lake, and it’s here we give you the chance to take a forest walk and see the mighty Aira Force waterfall.

You then travel towards Keswick, stopping outside the town to visit the mysterious Castlerigg standing stones, thought to have been built over 5,000 years ago and once a lively hub of ancient pagan rituals.

You have a short journey into the lively market town of Keswick where you’re dropped off at your accommodation and free to explore the charming town.

 

Day 2

  • Stare in wonder at the views on an optional boat trip, Lake Windermere
  • Wander around the cosy village of Hawkshead
  • Enjoy the peace of the Wordsworth Memorial Daffodill Garden

After breakfast, you take in views of Ullswater Lake as we head along country roads to its southern shores.

You continue further south and travel over the narrow and winding Kirkstone Pass towards the lovely Lake Windermere. Here you have the option to take a leisurely cruise on the Lake or eat lunch while enjoying sublime views of the surrounding scenery.

After lunch you travel around the southern tip of Windermere and on towards Coniston Water. Your next stop is the picturesque conservation village of Hawkshead, where the poet William Wordsworth attended Grammar School.

After exploring the cosy village, you take the narrow country lanes north towards Grasmere, which Wordsworth described as “the loveliest spot that man hath found”.

There's free time to visit Wordsworth’s Dove Cottage, taste the legendary gingerbread, or enjoy the peace and tranquillity of the Wordsworth Daffodil Garden by the River Rothy.

In the late afternoon, you return to Keswick.

 

Day 3

  • Set your sights on sweepings views from atop the Whinlatter Pass
  • Learn about the slate mines at the Honister Mountain Pass

We pick you up from your accommodation and head for the Whinlatter Forest Park and over the Whinlatter Pass into the most dramatic landscapes that the Lake District has to offer.

You journey along winding lanes, through the rural village of High Lorton, past the shores of Crummock Water and Buttermere, and towards the Honister Mountain Pass.

Stopping amongst the mountains you have the opportunity to visit old slate workings, where a small number of Cumbrians continue to make their living.

After refreshments, you continue through the forests of Borrowdale, passing Derwent Water, where there’s free time for lunch and shopping.

Once you’ve eaten lunch, you begin your return journey, heading towards Penrith and north towards the border. After crossing into Scotland you take a stop in the town of Biggar, a royal burgh since 1415. From here it’s a leisurely drive through the rolling border hills back to Edinburgh.

Accommodation

Where does this tour stay overnight?

You stay in the lively market town of Keswick*.

 

*Please be aware that Keswick is busy. You may need to be flexible with rooms we're able to reserve for you here. If you'd prefer to find your own accommodation for this location, please choose the 'book your own accommodation' option when you book your tour.

 

How does the accommodation work?

Your tour excludes accommodation; but when you book, you can ask us to reserve local accommodation for you, or you can choose to reserve your own accommodation in the overnight locations.

 

I want Rabbie’s to book my accommodation, what happens now?

Once you've booked your tour, we'll reserve all your accommodation, and your driver will drop you off with your hosts. 

We'll reserve your room(s) with one of our preferred accommodation suppliers and you'll pay them directly when you check-in. Most accommodation hosts don’t accept credit cards, so be prepared to pay cash.

You won't be able to choose which Hotel/B&B you stay in, but we will confirm the named property and exact prices on your first day of tour. If it's important for you to know where you're going to be staying in advance, or if you want to stay in a specific Hotel/B&B, we recommend that you select the option to book your own accommodation.

 

What if I want to change my accommodation booking with Rabbie’s?

Plans can change, so we let you alter your accommodation choices for free within the first 48 hours of booking. After this time, amendments aren't guaranteed and carry a surcharge. Please contact rooms@rabbies.com if you have any questions.

 

I booked my own accommodation is there anything I need to do?

You’ll need to contact us with your accommodation details. Please only reserve accommodation within the overnight towns that your tour stops in. Your driver will drop you off at your chosen accommodation as long as it’s relatively central.

 

What if I cancel my tour at short notice?

You may be liable for the cost of your first nights’ accommodation for each separate accommodation booked. If you cancel less than three days before departure, you may be liable for all your accommodation costs.

 

What are the accommodation types?

We try to reserve accommodation that’s no more than a 20-minute walk from the town centre. We regularly check our accommodation suppliers to ensure they reach a certain standard. The prices below are for guidance only.

B&B (Bed and Breakfast) Standard

The toilet and showering facilities are shared with at least one other room in the house, and the price includes breakfast. The cost is £35 - £50 per person per night based on shared accommodation. A single standard room is £40 - £70 per night.

B&B En suite

The showering and toilet facilities are private, and breakfast is included in the price. The cost is £45 - £65 per person per night based on shared accommodation. A single en suite is £75 - £90 per night.

Hotels

Hotels have a bar or restaurant and provide evening meals. Breakfast is included in the price. The cost is £75 - £90 per person per night based on shared accommodation. A single is £90 - £150 per night.

Hostels

Please note, we're unable to book hostels for this tour at the moment. You may still be able to book hostel accommodation yourself if you choose to the option to book your own accommodation for your tour.

A hostel consists of dormitory rooms with 4 to 16 bunk beds. The bathroom facilities are a short distance from the dorm room. Kitchen facilities are equipped so you can make your own meals. The cost based on dorm beds is £19 - £30 per person per night.

Please note that SYHA hostels only offer same gender dorms. Some independent hostels will offer mixed rooms (males and females together). 

 

I have more questions, who can help me?

If you have any more questions, you can read our FAQs, call us on +44(0)131 226 3133, or email rooms@rabbies.com.

 

FAQs

Do you offer hotel pickups in the departure cities?

The UK and Ireland's historic city centres are full of narrow streets and winding roads. So, to speed up your departure, we only pick up from our central meeting points. What's more is leaving the city using the most direct route also reduces the carbon footprint of our tours.

Is there parking close to the departure point?

We don't recommend bringing your car into the centre of our departure cities. It can be hard to find parking, and there are excellent public transportation services.

When should I get to the departure point?

Arrive 15 minutes before your departure time. Due to waiting restrictions, we can't wait for you if you're late.

What happens if I'm late or miss the tour?

If you're late for your tour, our cancellation policy applies.

What are your cancellation policies?

We have a cancellation period of 48 hours for our one day tours, 15 days for two to nine day tours, and 21 days for 10+ day tours. If cancelled outside this period, we'll give you a full refund minus a 10% admin charge. If you cancel inside this period, refunds are at our discretion. Click here to view full terms and conditions.

Can Itineraries change?

Your tour will always follow the itinerary as closely as possible. While there are ongoing coronavirus restrictions throughout the UK and Ireland, itineraries are more likely to change than usual as opening hours and capacities at many visitor attractions are reduced and subject to change. Your driver-guide will keep you up to up to date on the road, and we'll try to get in touch about any large changes prior to your departure.

Can I pre-book a specific seat?

Due to logistical reasons, we're unable to let you pre-book a seat on the bus. But our comfortable 16-seat mini-coaches have huge windows. So, you'll always get a good view.

Are there toilets on the bus?

Unfortunately, we have no on-board toilet facilities, but you'll have regular comfort breaks.

How do you cater for people with accessibility needs?

We aim to accommodate everyone. To read more information on how we do this, click here to go to our accessibility guide.

Do you take children on your tours?

We regret we don't carry children under the age of five on our scheduled tours.

You can ask us about the tours we recommend for younger children. And if your child is less than 1.35m tall, you should let us know, so we can provide them with a suitable booster seat.

How much time do I get off the bus?

We want you to enjoy Britain and Ireland. And we believe the best way to do this is to get you off the mini-coach and out exploring. So, we give you plenty of time to take photos, go walking, and explore ancient ruins.

Why do you exclude visitor attractions?

We exclude visitor attractions in your tour price because it lets you travel your way. It means you can pamper yourself with a luxury lunch or skip an attraction whenever you feel like it.

Do we need to bring our own lunch?

You don't need to. We stop in small towns, villages, and rural eateries where you can choose whatever meal pleases both your taste buds and your budget.

Should I tip the driver-guide?

Let's be honest, our driver-guides would never refuse a cheeky bonus. But it's up to you, and the amount is entirely at your discretion.

What about travel insurance?

We advise you take out travel insurance.

What is ABTOT?

You're protected by ABTOT when you chose to let us reserve your accommodation on a multi-day tour. This means you can claim back anything you've paid us if we become bankrupt. Read our terms and conditions for more information.

I have more questions, who can help me?

If you have any more questions, call us on +44(0)131 226 3133, email tours@rabbies.com , or check out our full FAQs .

4 reasons to choose Rabbie's

Travel the local way on small group tours of 16 people or fewer

You'll have a guaranteed experience, or your money back

Guaranteed departures: We’ll never cancel your tour because of minimum numbers

Our eco-friendly tours support local communities


Customer reviews



BTA_2018.png Green Tourism Award Scottish Thistle Awards Winner 2015/2016 TC_2021_LL_TRANSPARENT_BG_RGB-01.png Scottish Tourist Board 5 Stars
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