Photo by DAVID ILIFF. License: CC BY-SA 3.0
In 2020 Keswick was named as the HomeAway best Family Friendly Destination in the UK in the rural category. Receiving almost half of the votes that were cast in this category, it really isn’t hard to see why.
With budgets a little more stretched than normal, visitors to Keswick will be please to hear that there are a very good number of free activities that can be enjoyed in Keswick, helping those holiday pounds to stretch a little further.
Located in North Cumbria, Keswick is a thriving market town with a range of small and interesting shops, plenty of cafes and places to eat and nestled in the middle of some truly stunning scenery. It makes a great place for a family day out or even as a holiday destination with a range of different places to stay, like Inn On The Square.
Walk around a lake
Derwentwater in the centre of Keswick has plenty to offer to families and, more importantly, all for free. Why not download one of the handy maps you will find online and take a walk around the lake? There are plenty of things to spot along the way that are sure to keep you occupied. Take a picnic with you and enjoy some of the incredible views that Derwentwater has to offer. If your children are quite young, then why not just take a short walk around part of the lake before heading back. You could even consider feeding the ducks as well.
If you want a gentle woodland stroll, then head over to Hope Park, where you can enjoy a peaceful woodland walk and maybe even spot something exciting from the bird hides. Lady Hope’s Garden is also a great place for a stroll, with plenty of plants to admire along the way.
If you fancy a park with a bit more action, then Fitz Park is the perfect spot. Just a few minutes away from Market Square in the centre of Keswick, the park has some enviable views out over Latrigg and Skiddaw and a riverside setting that makes it the ideal spot for a picnic. Don’t forget to bring your bikes as the park also has a BMX track. For younger children, there is also a great children’s playground.
The only true mountain forest in England, Whinlatter is located on the outskirts of Keswick and offers a full day of free activities for just the price of a car park ticket. Entry to most of the activities you will find here is free. Although there are a few that have an entry fee, you will certainly find plenty to occupy you even if you avoid these. From the adventure playgrounds to the nature trails, the fantastic walks, to the longest purpose-built bike trail in the Lake District, there is something to suit everyone.
Castlerigg Stone Circle
No visit to Keswick is really complete without a trip to see the Castlerigg Stone Circle, and this is very definitely a free activity. There are several approaches to the circle and plenty of well-signed walks, so depending on the age and ability of the members of your family, you should find one to suit you. For families with younger members, it is also possible to drive to and park in the road nearby, although this can be busy. One of the earliest stone circles in Britain, the area is great for a picnic. It offers some stunning views of the surrounding area. There are also information plaques which make great reading for those who want to know more about the circle and its history.