Under 11s go free

7 Night Southern Lake District Family Walking Adventure

Rear View Of Family Standing At Top Of Hill On Hike Through Countryside In Lake District UK
Duration: 7 nights
Type: Family walking
Walking Grade: 1, 2, 4 & 5
from £1,285pp

The Southern Lake District is always a winner when it comes to family days out; not least because it gets the kids active and away from their screens. Walk through the woods to marvel at Tarn Hows, stock up on gingerbread in Grasmere, or hike to the top of the Old Man of Coniston for the most stunning of views. And when you’re not busy bonding with your brood in the great outdoors, relax at Monk Coniston – our Gothic-style country house just a skip away from the sparkling shores of Coniston Water and its namesake village.

What you’ll love

  • Under 11s GO FREE
  • Enjoying gentle valley strolls or conquering Wainwright’s summits
  • Spotting Herdwick sheep
  • Exploring the Coppermines Valley
  • Discovering places that inspired children's author Beatrix Potter
  • Meeting families who share your love of walking

What’s included

  • Comfortable en-suite accommodation in our country house 
  • Cream tea on arrival day 
  • Cooked or continental breakfast every morning 
  • Daily packed lunches 
  • Three-course evening meals, plus tea & coffee 
  • Guided walking with experienced HF Holidays Leaders 
  • Choice of up to four guided walks (on walking days) 
  • All transport to and from walks where necessary 
  • Easy-to-follow routes, maps, and information in our Discovery Point if you want to explore independently  

Trip Notes

Easy to download as a PDF, our trip notes provide detailed information for every holiday. Please click below to find the trip notes for your departure date.

All our carefully-curated itineraries are designed by our experts. While we make every effort to adhere to the described itinerary, we may take alternative routes or adapt the running order for weather and/or operational reasons.

You're welcome to check in from 4pm onwards. Enjoy a complimentary cream tea on arrival.

Option 1 - Tarn Hows and Monk Coniston

Distance: 4 miles (7km) 

Ascent: 800 feet (260m) 

In summary: Explore the charming countryside surrounding Monk Coniston and visit the picturesque Tarn Hows, a famous beauty spot.  

Highlight: The picturesque views abound at Tarn Hows straight out of the pages of a Victorian tourist guide.

Option 2 - Tarn Hows and Yew Tree Farm

Distance: 6.5 miles (10km) 

Total ascent: 800 feet (260m) 

In summary: Explore the charming countryside surrounding Monk Coniston and visit the picturesque Tarn Hows, a famous beauty spot.  

Highlight: The picturesque views around Tarn Hows look like they are straight out of the pages of a Victorian tourist guide. 

Option 3 - Black Crag and Tarn Hows

Distance: 8.5 miles (14km)

Ascent: 1,750 feet (540m)

In summary: Walking from the House, we cross woods and fields up to Iron Keld Plantation. We then traverse an open fell to Black Crag summit which commands a great viewpoint. Continuing on via Hollin Bank, we join the Cumbria Way, returning to Monk Coniston via the picturesque Tarn Hows.

Highlight: The summit of Black Crag is one of the best panoramic viewpoints in the Southern Lake District. 

Option 4 - Low Tilberthwaite and Wetherlam

Distance: 8.5 miles (13.5km)

Ascent: 2650 feet (800m)

In summary: A grand day out in the mountains, reaching the top of Wetherlam after a mild but exciting scramble up Wetherlam Edge.

Highlight: The sense of achievement on reaching the top having scrambled up ‘The Edge’.

Option 1 - Around Rydal to Grasmere

Distance: 4 miles (6km) 

Total ascent: 600 feet (180m)

The walk in a nutshell: This walk circuits two of the Lake District's prettiest lakes, and also passes through Rydal village and finishes in Grasmere. 

Don’t miss: The stunning waterfall in the grounds of Rydal Hall. The artists' grotto at the bottom of the falls has a window which frames the falls perfectly. 

Option 2 - Above Rydal and Grasmere

Distance: 6.5 miles (11km) 

Ascent: 1,050 feet (320m) 

The walk in a nutshell: Starting from the bustling town of Ambleside we follow the River Rothay to Rydal passing the impressive Rydal Hall. We continue above the north shore of Rydal Water then on to Grasmere.      

Don’t miss: There's time to explore Grasmere, famous as the home of poet William Wordsworth. Don't forget to seek out the poet's grave in the village churchyard, or sample the famous (and very tasty) Grasmere Gingerbread. 

Option 3 - Helm Crag and Calf Crag

Distance: 8½ miles (13.5km) 

Ascent: 2,000 feet (620m)

In summary: An opportunity to climb Helm Crag, one of the most distinctive Lakeland Fells with the ‘Lion and the Lamb’ rock formations on the summit. We’ll follow the ridge to Gibson Knott and Calf Crag before descending via Far Easedale. 

Highlight: It's a steep climb to the top of Helm Crag, but you'll be rewarded with great views over Grasmere. 

Option 4 - Sergeant Man to Helm Crag

Distance: 10 miles (16km)

Ascent: 2,900 feet (900m)

In summary: We leave the beautiful village of Grasmere and start the climb towards Easedale Tarn and then Sergeant Man. From Sergeant Man we follow paths across to Calf Crag, before a fantastic ridge takes us to Gibson Knott and Helm Crag. A steep descent then takes us to a well earned rest in Grasmere.

Highlight: Enjoy the superb views into Langdale from Sergeant Man, as well as exploring several Wainwrights along this great walk.

Discover more about Monk Coniston and the local area for ideas on how to fill your free day. 

Option 1 - The Langdale Valley

Distance: 4.5 miles (7km)

Ascent: 250ft (80m) 

In summary: A gentle stroll from Skelwith Bridge following the Cumbria Way walking along the Great Langdale Beck until we arrive at New Dungeon Ghyll Car Park.

Highlight: Enjoy the stunning backdrop of the famous Langdale Valley while you walk into the heart of the fells.

Option 2 - Langdale Waterfalls

Distance: 7 miles (11km) 

Ascent: 700 feet (220m) 

In summary: Follow the Langdale Valley past Elterwater village, to the new Dungeon Ghyll Hotel through increasingly grand scenery.  

Highlight: Spectacular waterfalls of Colwith Force and Skelwith Force.

Option 3 - Pike O'Blisco

Distance: 6½ miles (10.5km)

Ascent: 2,050 feet (640m)

In summary: Starting at the New Dungeon Ghyll, we head up on a good path beneath Side Pike, to the road col over to Little Langdale. Here we turn and continue our ascent to the rocky summit of Pike O’Blisco. We head down via Oxendale and make our way back past the Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel.

Highlight: An impressive peak in its own right, surrounded by great mountain ridges.

Option 4 - Crinkle Crags and Bow Fell

Distance: 9½ miles (15km)

Ascent: 3,200 feet (980m)

In summary: Heading into Oxendale we ascend towards Red Tarn to join the classic Crinkle Crags ridge, including the famous 'Bad Step' to our first summit. We then head via the col at Three Tarns to the imposing peak of Bow Fell. Out descent follows 'The Band' down to the valley for a well earned drink. 

Highlight: There is a great sense of achievement in scaling two of Wainwrights finest fells, on this challenging but rewarding day. 

Option 1 - Ambleside to Brockhole

Distance: 4 miles (6km)

Ascent: 840ft (250m) 

In summary: Starting in Ambleside, we follow a bridleway through Skelghyll Wood before continuing on and then arriving at the Brockhole Visitor Centre.

Highlight: A lovely low-level walk passing Jenkins Crag

Option 2 - Ambleside and Troutbeck to Brockhole

Distance: 5.5 miles (9km)

Ascent: 1,150ft (350m) 

In summary: From the centre of Ambleside, we first visit Stockghyll Force waterfall and then head through Skelghyll Wood above Troutbeck before finishing the walk at Brockhole.

Highlight: A visit to the beautiful Stockghyll Force before walking through woods and quiet lanes to get to Brockhole.

Option 3 - Ambleside and Wansfell to Brockhole

Distance: 6.5 miles (11km)

Ascent: 1,850ft (550m) 

In summary: From Ambleside, we ascend the open fellside to the summit of Wansfell before descending gently towards Troutbeck Village. We cross fields and countryside to arrive at Brockhole.

Highlight: Fantastic views of Ambleside and the surrounding villages from the summit of Wansfell.

Option 4 - Fairfield Horseshoe

Distance: 10 miles (16km) 

Ascent: 3,300 feet (1,000m) 

In summary: Walk the famous Fairfield Horseshoe, one of the finest mountain walks in the Lake District. Tick off eight separate Wainwright Fells on this day of fantastic high-level walking. 

Highlight: A drink will be richly deserved after this challenging but rewarding walk. 

Option 1 - Coniston & Coppermines

Distance: 5 miles (8 km) 

Ascent: 720 feet (220m) 

In summary: Walk via the Coppermines Valley to Coniston village and down to the jetty on beautiful Consiton Water, look out for the Steam Gondola on the water. Finally a short walk through the fields takes us back to Monk Coniston.

Highlight: The jetty on the lake is a fantastic place to appreciate this magnificent setting.

Option 2 - Coppermines Valley

Distance:  7 miles (11km)

Ascent: 380m (1,250ft)

In summary: Walk in the historic Coppermines valley and the lower slopes of Coniston Old Man.

Highlight: The history of mining in the area and feeling of being in among the fells.

Option 3 - Coppermines Valley and Levers Water

Distance: 8.5 miles (13.5km) 

Ascent: 1,750 feet (540m)

In summary: We walk from the house into the historic Coppermines Valley. We make our way to the shores of Levers Water passing remains of a once vibrant mining industry. 

Highlight: The long and fascinating history of mining and admiring the surrounding mountains from Levers Water.

Option 4 - Coniston Old Man and Dow Crag

Distance:  11 miles (17.5km)

Ascent: 3,250 feet (980m)

In summary: A high level route taking in two iconic mountains.

Highlight: From the top of Coniston Old Man, the views across Goats Water take in the magnificent eastern crags of Dow Crag, thought by many to be the second most impressive rock structure in the Lake District.

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before making your way home.

Monk Coniston

With a desirable address overlooking Coniston Water (the inspiration for Arthur Ransome’s 1930 novel, Swallows and Amazons), this characterful Grade II-listed house delights with lakeside and woodland walks from the doorstep, décor that stays true to the period feel, and plenty of Beatrix Potter references. While the children's author and illustrator did not live at the Monk Coniston estate (her beloved home was Hill Top, bought in 1905 with the royalties from The Tale of Peter Rabbit), she campaigned with the National Trust to save it from development. She then purchased the entire estate in 1930 and as the new owner she immediately sold half to the organisation, bequeathing them the other half in her will.



Designed with your comfort in mind, Monk Coniston has 30 well-appointed guest rooms available in three categories: Classic, Premium, and Superior. 

Classic Rooms are comfortable en-suite guest rooms, ideal for a peaceful night's sleep. Amenities include free Wi-Fi, tea and coffee-making facilities, toiletries (hand wash, shampoo, and shower gel), and a TV. 

Premium Rooms are more spacious en-suite guest rooms. Amenities include free Wi-Fi, tea and coffee-making facilities, toiletries (hand wash, shampoo, body lotion, shower gel), and a 32-inch TV. Extras include bathrobes, slippers, and comfortable mattresses.

Superior Rooms are even more spacious en-suite guest rooms offering upgraded views of the surrounds. Amenities include free Wi-Fi, tea and coffee-making facilities, toiletries (hand wash, shampoo, body lotion, shower gel), and a 32-inch TV. Extras include bathrobes, slippers, and comfortable mattresses.

We love: The rooms with a garden or lake view. We also love Room 9 on the first floor for its original features and beautiful views across the gardens and fields that slope down to the shores of Coniston Water. 

The Choose Your Room service is available at our UK country houses, allowing you the option of choosing and confirming a specific room for an extra charge of £30 per room. This is subject to availability. Upgrade supplements apply. 

Check in & check out 
You are welcome to check in from 4:00pm at the earliest. On arrival, you’ll enjoy a complimentary cream tea and get to meet your fellow guests, our HF Holidays Leaders, and the rest of the friendly team.  

On the day of departure, we kindly ask all guests to check out by 10:00am. You’ll be asked to settle your bill prior to leaving. You may, of course, make a charitable donation to our HF Holidays Pathways Fund if you wish. Please note that we only accept card payments.  

Room supplements

Superior Premium single Premium double/twin Choose your room
£25 pppn £20 pppn £20 pppn £30 per room

About your stay

A warm welcome
We want you to feel comfortable from the moment you arrive. You’ll find a welcome pack in your room with guest registration forms, menus, order forms for dinners and picnic lunches, the Wi-Fi password, and the front door code. Our houses are locked at night, so we recommend noting the Duty Manager’s number on arrival in case of an emergency (or getting locked out). 

Evening entertainment
While evening entertainment varies from house to house, the HF Holidays Big Pub Quiz held after dinner on Wednesdays is a weekly staple. Your HF Holidays Leader may be around for tips on guided and self-guided walking routes as well as visit-worthy local attractions. 

Walks talks 
Our HF Holidays Leaders host guided walking information briefings before dinner on arrival days. This is followed by a group Walks Talk for information on the following day’s walking delights (held before dinner every evening). Self-guided walking guests are, of course, welcome.  

The walking day
Prior to setting off on walks, your HF Holidays Leader will run you through a short safety briefing. There’s also an up-to-date weather forecast on display at the house to ensure you have appropriate clothing and footwear. If you choose to do your own walks or are on a self-guided walking holiday, we ask that you please complete an Independent Walker Card each day. These can be found near the Discovery Point in the house. 

Food & drink

Led by experienced chefs, we serve a wide range of dishes made with fresh and seasonal ingredients. We always aim to source the best produce available and use home-grown herbs and vegetables from our own gardens whenever possible. Additionally, we have a licensed bar with beers, soft drinks, and a superb selection of spirits. Full-board comes as standard and includes a cream tea on arrival and a hearty breakfast on departure day.

HF Holidays understands the importance of managing allergens effectively to ensure food is safe for guests with food allergies. Whilst we are always able to confidently inform guests which allergens are present in our ingredients and dishes, we are unable to guarantee absolute freedom from the 14 main allergens in our kitchens. Vegetarian and vegan menu choices are available. If you have allergies, food intolerances, or any special dietary requirements, please inform our reservation team at the time of booking.


For accessibility and assistance information, please contact our expert team on 020 3974 8865 or view the accessibility information online for Monk Coniston

Coniston - External.jpg

Getting to Monk Coniston

Find out more about this location including travel details and room types.

More Information

Essential information

The UK has a famously unpredictable climate so it's best to be prepared for weather that’s sunny one minute and raining the next.  To make it easier, here’s a list of items you should consider packing.  


  • Suitable footwear such as waterproof walking boots that provide ankle support and good grip 
  • Waterproof and windproof jacket, preferably insulated 
  • Comfortable clothing (jeans & waterproof capes are not suitable) 
  • Waterproof overtrousers 
  • Gloves and a warm hat (or sunhat) 
  • Rucksack 
  • Water bottle (at least 1 litre capacity) 
  • A small torch 
  • Sunscreen 
  • Mobile phone and portable charger 
  • Watch 
  • UV sunglasses 


  • Several base layers (long-sleeve or short-sleeve) 
  • Cushioned walking socks to avoid blisters 
  • First aid kit, including plasters and insect repellent 
  • Sit mat  
  • Spare pair of socks 
  • Energy snacks 
  • Waterproof pouch for valuables 
  • Rubbish bag (remember to always leave no trace) 
  • Wallet/purse 

Optional extras

  • Walking poles, useful for descents 
  • Flask for hot drinks 
  • Durable lunch box 
  • Gaiters 
  • Blister kit  
  • Waterproof rucksack liner 
  • Head torch 
  • GPS device 

Monk Coniston Calendar

  • Guided Walking
  • Self-Guided Walking
  • Special Interests
  • Unavailable to Book

Guest reviews

All holidays are subject to availability. Supplements may apply.

Non-member fee: £30 per person.

All our carefully-curated itineraries are designed by our experts. While we make every effort to adhere to the described itinerary, we may take an alternative route, or vary the running order for weather and/or operational reasons.

Holiday prices

Date (Start - End) Itinerary Double / Twin Room Single Room Notes / Offers Trip Notes Book

26 Jul - 02 Aug 2024

7 nights

Family Walks

Single from


Double from

£1,285 pp


£1,285 pp



Trip Notes Enquire

09 Aug - 16 Aug 2024

7 nights

Family Walks

Single from


Double from

£1,285 pp


£1,285 pp



Trip Notes Enquire

Important information

Maximum 3 free child places under 11 years per full paying adult price on UK country house stays.

Family rooms are subject to availability. Sole occupancy charges may apply. 

Children under 11 go free

Children 11-17 years on 7-night breaks £99pp for 2023 and £109pp for 2024

All children's rates are based on sharing a bedroom with one or more adults.

Children under 14 must be accompanied by a responsible adult on all walks, though this need not be a parent or guardian

7 nights
Family walking
Walking Grade:
1, 2, 4 & 5

7 nights from £1,285pp

Under 11s go free

or call 020 3974 8865

For group bookings of 10+ guests click here

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