Darwin Escapes

Hidden Gems of The Lake District

Welcome to another hidden Britain post ladies and gentlemen, we are going to explore the Lake District

In late 2015 and early 2016 Cumbria was affected by devastating floods, our own Thanet Well Lodge Retreat was lucky enough not to be touched, but now Cumbria needs the tourism and support to get them back on their feet. So pay them a visit and cheer a few people up after a very tough start to the year…


The Bridge House


This is literally a tiny house on a tiny bridge, you can step off the pavement and straight into the miniature downstairs room, with a cute tiny fire place! Walk around the back of the house to go up the outside spiral stone staircase and into the light and airy upstairs room, the house was originally built in the 17th Century as an apple storage building. Over the centuries the little house has been a tea room, a weaving shop, a cobblers, a chair makers and once even a home to a family of 8 (I have no idea how!). During the 1920’s Beatrix Potter’s husband helped to save and restore the charming house through conservation efforts, why not drop in to the see the quaint tiny house on a bridge.


Larch Cottage Nurseries


The Larch Cottage Nurseries is a secret garden in the heart of the Eden Valley with Romanesque walls draped in greenery, providing a backdrop for the peaceful gardens bursting with mature and breathtaking plants. Hosting more than 15,000 varieties of plants the team specialise in rare and unusual shrubs and climbers including Japanese Acers and Dwarf Conifers. It is also home to a huge range of statues, many of which are for sale too, there is a statue to suit everyone taste, from animals and teddy bears to gargoyles and goblins, made out of iron, steal, bronze and even marble. A lovely afternoon out surrounded by colourful flowers and beautiful statues.


Lucy’s On A Plate


A wonderful restaurant offering delicious food, and owner Lucy Nicolson has made a name for herself in Cumbria, and rightly so! This very talented lady owns not only the restaurant, but also Lucy4 which is a popular wine bar in the area. She has also recently opened a cooking school called Lucy Cooks that offers something for every age, interest and ability, from beginners to advanced skills, helping you to create your own cooking masterpiece. Take a seat on the comfy sofas, or dine in the airy conservatory curled up in front of the cosy fireplace. If the sun is on your side, soak it up in the secluded walled garden too. There is somewhere to enjoy your food for all moods.


Brougham Castle


A striking historic castle in Penrith, with picturesque surroundings on the banks of the River Eamont, this 13th Century masterpiece is a wonder to behold. It was once a formidable barrier against Scottish invaders and was even home to King Edward I back in the 1300’s, it has lots of complex passages, hidden rooms and spiral staircases to explore on your travels through it too! The gift shop has lots on offer, with souvenirs from the English Heritage site, and the castle is also dog friendly and has picnic tables available to have some lunch too!

Also visit one of the best smoke houses in the region, The Wild Boar in Kendal, and for a beautiful lake away from the tourist path venture to Buttermere lake and marvel at the beautiful scenery! (maybe leave some bread crumbs to help you find your way back…)

Happy Adventuring Folks!

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Photo Credits: Kayugee, Foltiere, Kenneth Allen, Foshie, David Dixon, Diliff, Les Haines