A guide to holidays in Cartmel
Cartmel is a pretty and historic rural village on the southern edge of the Lake District. Situated within a valley, it enjoys spectacular views out over the Lakeland fells. Surrounding our Cartmel cottages are miles of woodlands, making it perfect for leisurely walks and cycle rides. From Cartmel, you can also climb Hampsfell to see the amazing views out over the coastal resort of Grange-over-Sands. This path takes the Cistercian Way, which also heads in the opposite direction taking you along the Cumbrian coast, past Holker Hall, over to Ulverston, Barrow-in-Furness and the end destination of Roa Island.
A unique way to explore the pretty streets of Cartmel as well as the surrounding area is by traditional horse-drawn carriage, which can escort you to some of the many historical sites found around the village. Perhaps the best-known is Cartmel Priory, which has been a place of pilgrimage for centuries. It’s still very much the heart of the village today, being a working church and host to a monthly food market.
Outside of its food market, Cartmel is home to a great selection of high-quality independent shops. Be sure to check out Unsworth’s Yard, close to the Priory, where there are some excellent artisan shops, including a popular cheesemaker. At the village shop, you can even pick up Cartmel’s trademark product, a traditional sticky toffee pudding. For even more indulgence, visit Old Hall Farm in nearby Bouth, where you can see how butter, cheese and fudge are made and enjoy the products made on-site in the tearoom. Cartmel is also home to its own two Michelin-starred restaurant, L’Enclume, offering fine dining on the banks of the river.
The centre of Cartmel is a delight to wander through, with not only the excellent selection of restaurants and cafes on offer, but also some pretty views to enjoy of the attractive cottages and floral displays which have won many awards over the years.
Cartmel is just a mile from the Lake District National Park, with Lake Windermere, the longest in the National Park, being the closest lake from the village. Lakeside is the closest waterside resort, lying on the southern tip of Lake Windermere. Also nearby is the Roudsea Wood Nature Reserve, where you can see a range of wildlife thrive in this varied habitat.
If you’ve been inspired to spend your Lake District break in charming Cartmel, take a look at our full collection of Cartmel cottages and accommodation above. You’ll find some lovely self-catering cottages amongst our places to stay, perfect for exploring both Cartmel and the Lake District.