15 Best Things to do in Troutbeck - Lake District
Troutbeck is a charming, quaint village just waiting to be explored in the famous Lake District of England. It’s nestled along a small and windy road between Windermere and Ambleside. Although it’s only about one and a half miles long, it truly would be a travesty to pass up all this tiny town has to offer.
There is a plethora of unusual things to do in Troutbeck, and as a conservation area, it’s well protected and cared for. This allows for an abundance of wildlife to spot while strolling the network of footpaths or enjoying a pint in a picturesque garden of the valley.
It’s easy to feel immersed in nature far from the trappings of hectic modern society when you’re among the sheep, wildflowers, and sparkling water ways. Even the tourist attractions in Troutbeck provide the tranquility of an escape.
Filled with many traditional buildings and spectacular views, it is truly a paradise for those who are walkers at heart. The origins of walking as a popular leisurely activity for the folks of 18th century England began in none other than the Lake District itself.
It’s not hard to feel the magic of these humble beginnings when meandering through the enchanting natural landscape of Troutbeck. One can’t help imagining Woodsworth spouting poetry that would revolutionise the world of walking for hundreds of years to come.
1 – Wander in Holehird Gardens
Holehird Gardens is an absolute gem tucked away in amongst gorgeous, sprawling scenery. It really is a worthwhile and accessible choice with the added bonus of free entry. It boasts well-kept paths to appreciate the gardens and the stunning views of the natural terrain alongside them.
There is always something different and beautiful to see here depending on the season. Wandering through the five acres of lush surroundings, you will come across some of the best views in in the area.
Holehird Gardens is a garden lover’s paradise. Make sure to take in the walled garden in all its glory along with the peach trees, glass houses, heather fields, rock gardens, orchids and hydrangeas. It’s carefully maintained by volunteers only in order to practice and promote the art of horticulture in the Lake District, and we sure do appreciate their efforts!
2 – Visit Jesus Christ Church
A stop to admire the architecture and renowned stained glass of Jesus Christ Church is one of the classic things to do in Troutbeck, regardless of faith. This powerful, historical monument boasts some of the most appreciated stained glass around, particularly the east window which catches the eye of travelers from all over.
Its distinctive tower is known for drawing visitors in to pause and reflect in the serene church yard complete with yew trees and snowdrop-laden gravestones. It is an active church with an open-door policy that creates a welcome and warm atmosphere.
It has an interesting history with a bit of mystery. While its exact origin is estimated around 1506, it is ultimately unknown. The church was later renovated in 1736, and you can still see parts of the original structure as you explore the scenic setting.
3 – Hike Wansfell Pike
Wansfell is one of three fells which is a part of the summit ridge called Caudale Moor in the Lake District situated between Troutbeck and Ambleside. This hike is certainly one with views worth the climb. At the top of the rocky peak are stunning 360-degree panoramas overlooking all of Ambleside and Lake Windermere.
Lake Windermere is the largest natural lake in England, and it is sure to live up to its title when taken in from this vantage point. It offers the best views on the ridge, and it is the perfect way to spend a day appreciating the natural landscape of the Lake District.
This trail contains a plethora of terrains for a never boring experience, and it is also one of the more idyllic things to do in Troutbeck for couples. The Wansfell Pike hike is a moderate level of difficulty at 6.4 km in length. However, the hardest part of the path is right at the beginning which makes for an invigorating start and a more relaxed, enjoyable end.
4 – Stop in at The Old Post Office
Whether you’re stopping in after a hike on Wansfell or a peaceful stroll through Jesus Christ Church, The Old Post Office undoubtedly has just what you need. It’s a charming cafe with a great selection of coffees, teas, as well as an extensive variety of delicious, home-cooked treats to provide you with cosy comforts that go perfectly with the spectacular landscape.
The Old Post Office is a quintessential Troutbeck spot, and it feels like a countryside haven waiting to be discovered and enjoyed just by you. If you asked a local for their most cherished spots in Troutbeck, we’d guess that this would make the top of their list.
5 – Enjoy an Afternoon Tea Service at Broadoak Country House
When exploring the English countryside in such a historical setting, it’s encouraged to take part in the traditional cultural practices in order to have an immersive experience. We are, of course, referring to a classic afternoon tea.
What feels like a luxury experience tea service can be enjoyed inside the warm and historic Broadoak Country House on a comfy couch in front of a roaring fire or on its sprawling, gorgeous grounds.
A variety of sandwiches, cakes and scones are served alongside the delicious tea. If it’s your first tea service, the menu does the work of going through the history of a proper tea etiquette, allowing you to feel the significance of the tradition while you’re enjoying it.
Of all the places to visit in Troutbeck, Broadoak Country House gives the full British experience in an awe-inspiring backdrop. It truly feels like you’ve stepped back in time in a hidden, far-away land while it’s actually just off the beaten path.
In addition to its quaint charm, the tea service caters to a broad range of dietary requirements. Treat yourself to this – you certainly won’t regret it!
6 – Grab a Pint and a Roast at The Mortal Man
At The Mortal Man, you’ll be drawn in by the pint selection but stay for the best beer garden in the district. Even if the interior is preferable due to poor weather, the view from the garden room still provides the goods – it really is breathtaking. And since England’s sunny days are, admittedly, few and far between, this makes it one of the better things to do in Troutbeck even when the weather is dull.
Of course, all of the local grub options are available and delectable, but we would be remiss not to recommend digging into a classic Sunday roast here. The oak rooms and grand fireplace create a quaint pub atmosphere complete with a stunning vista.
If you happen to have one too many pints, you can always choose to stay the night in one of the 12 resplendent rooms available. This is, without a doubt, an unmissable pub experience.
7 – Take a Break at The Queen’s Head Inn
The Queen’s Head is an iconic coaching inn, and it’s the ideal country pub. If you are in search of a hearty meal with a refreshing pint where all the produce is locally sourced, this is the spot for you.
It provides a bright and contemporary space while maintaining a classic, down-to-earth feel through features like exposed beams and real fireplaces. As has come to be expected in such an area as Troutbeck, the views from this pub are enchanting.
The bar was repurposed from an Elizabethan four-poster bed that was originally sourced from Appleby Castle – it certainly adds a bit of fun flair to the usual charm of the surrounding wooded, rocky peaks and valleys. This makes it one of the more popular tourist attractions in Troutbeck.
8 – Take in the Views at Claife Viewing Station
Claife viewing station is a secret gem of the area. Viewing stations such as this came around during the Picturesque Movement of the 18th century as a way to properly take in the landscape. Lucky for us, they function as both a gorgeous frame for the vistas and that perfect, Instagram-worthy vacation post.
The viewing station comes complete with colored glass slides originally used to recreate the view in the light of the different seasons, and it makes for a fun alternative to your everyday photo filter.
In addition, there is plenty to explore between the courtyard paths, woods, and buildings – you really should take your time to feel the magic of this special spot. There is nothing better than putting yourself directly in the midst of what you have been admiring from above.
9 – Experience Aira Force
The beauty of all of the things to do in Troutbeck is that there is a broad assortment of wonders just outside its borders that are delightful to explore. One such wonder is Aira Force, the most famous of the Lake District waterfalls. With the captivating, 65-foot drop and radiant wooded surroundings, it’s popularity certainly is well-earned.
It takes about two hours to get up to the waterfall, so it is best to prepare accordingly. There are a pair of footbridges around the path – one above the falls and one below. Both are glorious vantage points from which to take in the rushing streams of water, and we recommend it as one of the more fun and active things to do in Troutbeck for kids.
10 – Journey Back in Time at Townend
Townend is a rustic farmhouse located in Troutbeck and built in 1626. The space itself conveys a deep sense of historical wonderment by creating a vivid idea of what a traditional farming household was like during this time.
It serves as a window into the past, encapsulating 400 years of interesting stories and unique objects that you can interact with – these include books, tools and furniture. In fact, some of these books are the only remaining copies in the world!
It’s great fun to explore the nooks and crannies of the old slate and stone home. Spending time outside among the flowers is a pleasant way to spend an afternoon.
Our special tip is to make a date of it and pack a picnic or a bottle of wine for your time at Townend. This is, undoubtedly, one of the more romantic things to do in Troutbeck for couples seeking some special time together.
11 – Explore the World of Beatrix Potter
Troutbeck is known for being the favorite location of Beatrix Potter who created the magical worlds of Peter Rabbit and Benjamin Bunny, among others.
Spending any amount of time here, it’s easy to see why she was so enchanted and how its magic inspired so much of her writing. Regardless of age, this is one of the more fun and charming things to do in Troutbeck.
The Beatrix Potter Museum doesn’t just pay homage to Potter herself. The museum houses an interactive exhibition that invokes a sense of childlike wonder, regardless of personal attachment to these stories. In addition, this is a great outing to save for a classic rainy day in the English countryside – of course, it’s always a good idea to have a few options for such occasions!
After having seen the beautiful Troutbeck in person and experiencing Potter’s interpretation of the picturesque scenery, the way in which the museum brings her creations to life brings out the whimsy you didn’t know you have been missing from your life.
12 – Get Adventurous at Rookin House Farm
Rookin House Farm is an activity centre in Troutbeck with something for everyone! It is one of the better things to do in Troutbeck for kids, but it also provides a fun, active break from the historical and traditional feel of the town while still providing adventures in the stunning nature available.
They offer archery, air rifle shooting, horseback riding, off roading, go karts, clay-pigeon shooting, quad treks, human bowling, tree climbing and an assault course. Of all the things to do in Troutbeck, Rookin really packs the most variety into one space.
It has a nice family and safety-conscious feel, and they are great at catering to specific group sizes and age groups. They also help to prioritize the activities that are best for the conditions at hand.
13 – Become One With the Water Through Lake District Paddle Boarding
Lake District paddle boarding is actually an unexpected crow favourite in the area of Troutbeck. Regardless of boarding experience or age, it’s an absolute blast. What better way to connect with the views of the lake than to be one the majestic body itself?
This experience comes with some historical and conservational anecdotes from the paddle board guides on different parts of Lake Windermere. They will also patiently instruct you on how to best use a paddle board if you are unfamiliar. Luckily, it’s not too difficult and if you have any semblance of sea legs whatsoever, it shouldn’t be long before you’re on your feet enjoying this natural wonder.
While it may not be a luxury tourist excursion per se, it certainly feels like a wild adventure made even more exciting by the views, islands, and beautiful wildlife. If you’re up for a bit of fun, this is a really special way to take it all in.
14 – Take an Historic Ride on Steam Yacht Gondola
An enchanting and relaxing thing to do in Troutbeck is an outing to the oldest steam yacht in Northern England – the infamous Steam Yacht Gondola. It was built in 1859, and it has since been restored to its former glory to provide visitors with a fun ride around Coniston Water.
Visitors have the option of an open-air voyage or a more luxurious, old-timey, first class saloon. There are plenty of stops along the two-hour trip where you can hop off and explore the sights or simply enjoy the view from the comfort of the deck.
As one of the more unusual things to do in Troutbeck, odds are you won’t find your peaceful ride packed with many other tourists. This is a refreshing way to explore Windermere’s beautiful next-door neighbor.
15 – Venture to Grizedale Forest
Unique to other hiking trails around Troutbeck, Grizedale Forest has more than just dazzling views. This is one of our favorite places to visit in Troutbeck – it takes you through some of the best parts of the forest around both Windermere and Coniston. As an added bonus, approximately 49 large-scale sculptures are scattered about, just waiting to be discovered by keen explorers.
In addition, there is an on-site bicycle rental shop that allows visitors to traverse the North Face mountain on two wheels. The awesome bike trails have seven cross country and downhill options. Where else in the world can you find an outdoor art museum and mountain bike adventure course all in one? Only in Troutbeck, of course!