Bridge & Walking at Conistonwater
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Exercise mind and body with this classic holiday combination. During the day you'll have a choice of two walks; either an easier or harder route, both carefully selected to enable you to see and explore the best of the local area. We'll return to the Country House in time to freshen up before the evening's Duplicate Bridge competition.
This holiday is suitable for regular players of Duplicate Bridge at club level.
- Daily choice of two walks
- Daily evening Bridge competition
- Comfortable Bridge rooms, quiet and as light as possible
- Small prizes offered, for fun
- EBU members earn Master Points
- High quality Full Board en-suite accommodation and excellent food in our Country House
- Carefully selected friendly, knowledgeable and EBU qualified Bridge Director and HF Holidays’ Walk Leaders, to ensure you get the most from your holiday
- All Bridge fees, stationery and prizes
- All transport for the walks
- Master Points
As an historic National Trust property, Monk Coniston is full of romantic, gothic-style charm. With the attractive Lake District setting, it's well suited to a relaxing holiday. Whether it's a walking or activity break you're after, this is a wonderful part of the country to explore your way.
Monk Coniston has 33 bedrooms. Some are located in the main house, with others in the adjoining cottage and counting house.
Choose your room
• Check-in from 2:30pm
• Comfortable accommodation
• En-suite bathroom with bath or shower
• Tea and coffee-making facilities
• Single rooms are available at no extra charge
• Same facilities as our classic rooms plus...
• Check in from 1pm
• Enjoy extra space or exceptional views
• Larger beds
• Toweling robe, complimentary slippers
• Ultradown pillows
• Monarch 1500 spring bed
• Smalls drying rack
• Small welcome gift
• Luxury tea tray
• Enhanced toiletries
• Available from an extra £15 per person per night
Check-in from 2:30pm
• 3 or 4 beds
• Same facilities as our classic rooms
• Full sized twin or double beds for adults and bunk or occasional beds for children
|• Excellent boot and drying rooms
• Dining room with lake views
|• Range of board games and books
• Free WiFi is available in some public rooms
• Our traditional Lakeland barn can be used for dancing, or as a games room
|• Large garden with views down to the lake
• Putting green and croquet lawn
• The National Trust maintains a collection of rare trees in the grounds
|All holidays at our Country Houses are full board accommodation including evening meal on arrival to breakfast on the day of your departure. All of our Country Houses have a well-stocked bar serving local beers, wine and spirits.
√ Start your day with our extensive breakfast.
All of our bars are stocked with locally sourced drinks so you can really soak up your surroundings.
Due to the age and the layout of Monk Coniston, it is not recommended for wheelchair users and guests with restricted mobility. There are ground floor en-suite bedrooms in the Counting House, but this building is access via steps.
- Fire procedure is displayed in each room and explained to guests on arrival. Guests requiring assistance at an evacuation are identified at this time and door hanger cards are issued
- Mobile phone reception is generally good from the main building
- Assistance dogs accompanying visually or hearing impaired guests are welcome; dogs must be kept on a lead or harness at all times
- Information can be provided in large print
- Staff have received disability awareness training
- Special diets can be catered for. Specialist food can be obtained with prior notice
- Fridge for medication can be supplied
This Bridge holiday has been created for anyone who is a regular club player of duplicate bridge. You can exercise both your mind and body with this classic holiday combination. During the day you'll have a choice of two walks: either an easier (4-6 miles) or harder route (6-8 miles), both carefully selected to enable you to see the best of the local area. We'll return to the Country House in time to freshen up before the Duplicate Bridge competition in the evening.
Check-in starts from 2.30pm (premium rooms from 1pm). All guests are invited to join us for afternoon tea where we’ll introduce your leader.
Your first Bridge session starts at 5pm and continues after dinner. Please inform either the house manager or your Bridge leader as soon as possible if you do not intend to attend the evening Bridge competition.
During your stay
After a delicious breakfast, you can enjoy the guided walk of your choice in the lovely local area. You’ll be able to chat to your new Bridge friends as you make your way, savouring a well-earned picnic lunch together as you sit down and enjoy the scenery all around you. The programme of walks is given below.
Each evening at 5pm your Bridge holiday continues with a friendly competition that continues after the fabulous 3-course dinner.
We’ll be sad to see you leave, but we know you’ll be heading home after a leisurely breakfast having made lots of new friends, kept fit and done what you love best – playing Duplicate Bridge.
Tarn Hows and Yew Tree Tarn
The walk in a nutshell – We head out from the house around Tarn Hows and then back via the picture perfect Yew Tree Tarn. 6 miles (10km) with 1,050 feet (320m) ascent.
Don't miss – The photo opportunity at Yew Tree Tarn. It’s a perfect place to pause and admire the beautiful mirror glass tarn with its surrounding tall pines and imposing craggy fellside beyond.
Tarn Hows and Tom Heights
The walk in a nutshell – This walk covers a similar route to the above, in reverse. We head out past Low Yewdale farm and Yew Tree Tarn before climbing up onto Tom Heights. We finish with a circuit of Tarn Hows and then return to the house. 7 miles (11.5km) with 1,100 feet (340m) ascent.
Don't miss – The view from Tom Heights on a clear day is one to savour. Although modest in height it affords views through to the Langdale and Coniston fells. A real feeling of getting up amongst the giants.
Loughrigg and the Coffin Route
The walk in a nutshell – The first half of this walk skirts between the pretty parkland lake of Loughrigg Tarn and the fell of the same name. after a short road section we emerge onto Loughrigg Terrace. The final part of the walk follows the coffin trail from Rydal to Grasmere. 5½ miles (9km) with 1,100 feet (340m) ascent.
Don't miss – The commanding views over Grasmere and emerging flowers from Loughrigg Terrace are hard to beat in the south lakes. At this time of year the first signs of spring will be shooting up from the fellside between this path and the lakeshore. It is the perfect sheltered bank for many wildflowers to grow.
Helm Crag and Easedale Tarn
The walk in a nutshell – The walk first climbs up onto Helm Crag before a descent and second climb up to Easedale Tarn. The final descent down through pretty Easedale leads us back into Grasmere. 6 miles (9.5km) with 1,650 feet (500m) ascent
Don't miss – The impressive rock formations at the top of Helm Crag famously known as the ‘Lion and the Lamb’ due to the resemblance of the figures from certain angles.
Elterwater, Little Langdale and Tilberthwaite
The walk in a nutshell – We start in Langdale crossing the old Slater bridge across the river. We then pass through the woodlands and old mine workings of Hodge Close Quarry, before emerging in the Tilberthwaite valley. A wander down the lane takes us to Low Yewdale farm, where we cross the fields back to the house. 6 miles (9.5km) with 1,000 feet (300m) ascent.
Don't miss – Crossing Slater bridge. This brilliantly constructed bridge is made out of slate slabs in a single spanning arch, much the same way an arched window would be made, by slotting lots of slabs alongside each other in a semi-circular stack. The result is a structure that appears very rickety, but is actually as solid as the bedrock it sits amongst.
Tilberthwaite and Hole Rake
The walk in a nutshell – From Little Langdale we climb out over the corner of the Tilberthwaite Fells and into the pretty and secluded farmyard of Low Tilberthwaite. The walk climbs again more in earnest this time through Tilberthwaite Gill and over the Yewdale Fells descending Hole Rake into the Coniston coppermines valley. 6½ miles (11km) with 1,500 feet (460m)
Don't miss – the cathedral like mines of Tilberthwaite Gill. A ravine dotted with old mine workings which now double as the perfect collection of rock faces for climbers to practice on.
What to bring
Bridge: All your Bridge stationery and equipment will be supplied. You may, however, like to bring a notebook and pen to make your own notes. EBU Members - don’t forget to bring your EBU membership number to earn Master Points on this holiday.
Walking: To enjoy your walking comfortably and safely, it is essential that your footwear, clothing and equipment are suitable for the conditions likely to be encountered. Britain is famous for its changeable weather, so our advice is to come prepared for all eventualities.
Bring a rucksack, a thermos flask for a hot drink, a water bottle (at least 1 litre) and spare high-energy food such as a chocolate bar, a small torch (in spring, autumn and winter) and first aid kit – your leader’s first aid kit doesn’t contain any medication or blister kits (such as Compeed). Many guests find walking poles useful, particularly for descents. Insect repellent, sun hat, sunglasses and protection cream and a camera are all optional extras you may choose to bring.
Discover the Lake District
Monk Coniston is an imposing Gothic property leased from the National Trust and set in 8 acres of grounds, including a restored walled garden and the impressive arboretum. Some particularly impressive specimens, including a giant sequoia (the largest tree in the world) and the wollemi pine can be explored on the Monk Coniston Tree Trail.
Views from the property offer breathtaking glimpses of Coniston Water and the surrounding mountains.
Coniston village is about one mile away – there is a direct path from the house to the village. Here you’ll find a small supermarket, post office, newsagent, pubs and a Barclays Bank (open 3 times a week). A wider range of facilities is available in Ambleside, the nearest town, about 8 miles away. The Ruskin Museum is also well worth a visit - find out more about the lake's connections to Donald Campbell and Arthur Ramsome. www.ruskinmuseum.com
During your visit to Monk Coniston you may enjoy visiting the following places of interest:
Steam Yacht Gondola
First cruising Coniston Water 150 years ago, the restored gondola is now operated by the National Trust, stopping at the Monk Coniston jetty at the bottom of the meadow below the house before gliding across the lake, calling at Coniston village and Brantwood House. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/steam-yacht-gondola
Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway
Ride ‘L’al Ratty’ a highly scenic narrow gauge railway which runs from the coast at Ravenglass along beautiful Eskdale. You could combine a visit with a walk over Muncaster Fell, or to Stanley Gill waterfall. www.ravenglass-railway.co.uk
Just a couple of miles from Monk Coniston, John Ruskin's former home commands superb views over the lake. www.brantwood.org.uk
A short walk from the Country House, this man-made water was created by Monk Coniston’s resident owner, James Garth Marshall in 1865, as he continued to develop the estate and expand his pleasure grounds. He built a dam to flood the area, amalgamating several smaller tarns, before planting the shores and islands with new woodlands and specimen trees.
Nearby Grizedale Forest is ideal for mountain biking and also has a popular sculpture trail. You can also experience the Go Ape! high-ropes course – a great option for active teenagers. www.forestry.gov.uk/grizedale
Visit this stately home, famous for its magnificent formal garden and topiary displays. www.levenshall.co.uk
Grasmere is about 30 minutes’ drive from Monk Coniston and is famous for its connections with William Wordsworth. The poet’s homes at Dove Cottage and Rydal Mount can be visited, the former of which includes the Wordsworth Museum. www.wordsworth.org.uk
Take a cruise along the length of Windermere - England's largest lake. Ferries connect Ambleside in the north to Bowness and Lakeside in the south, where you can connect with the Lakeside and Haverthwaite Railway. www.windermere-lakecruises.co.uk, www.lakesiderailway.co.uk
Gondola image ©National Trust Images/Paul Harris
Travel to Conistonwater
Our address is: Monk Coniston, Coniston, Cumbria LA21 8AQ
The nearest train station is at Windermere. For train times and general rail enquiries visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or call 03457 484950 (from outside the UK call +44 20 7278 5240).
The 13 mile journey from Windermere railway station takes approximately 30 minutes. Pre-booked taxis cost approx £27. Details of our current recommended taxi company and rates will be sent to you with your booking. The taxi company will arrange shared taxis wherever possible. The return taxi journey can be arranged on your behalf by the Monk Coniston Manager.
From Windermere station you can catch the 505 bus direct to Monk Coniston - the bus stop is right outside our Country House. Journey time is around 50 minutes. For bus times see www.traveline.info
From Ambleside take the A593 signposted to Coniston. Turn sharp left over a narrow bridge, then after half a mile turn left onto the B5286, signposted to Hawkshead. About 3 miles along this road, and just before Hawkshead, turn right onto the B5285, signposted to Coniston. Follow this road over Hawkshead Hill. The road descends then goes around a 180° bend to the left. The entrance to Monk Coniston is on the left about 100yds after the bend. There is car parking available within the grounds.
Travelling from overseas
For most guests the most convenient option is to book a flight to Manchester Airport. There are direct trains every hour from Manchester Airport to Oxenholme - this is straightforward journey - allow 1½ hours to Oxenholme. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times.
From Oxenholme station you can complete the journey to Monk Coniston by bus or taxi (see above).
Flying to London Heathrow airport is another option, but has a longer onward train journey - allow at least 4 hours to reach Oxenholme. From Heathrow first take the train to London Paddington station. Next take the Underground train to London Euston. Finally the main line train from London Euston to Oxenholme takes 2½ hours. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times.
Peter has played bridge for over forty years and is an EBU qualified Director at the Olicana Bridge Club in Ilkley, Yorkshire. He also organizes supervised play and seminars for improvers and has taught Standard English Acol in Adult Education. As well as walking and cycling in ‘The Dales’, Peter loves sharing his enthusiasm for playing bridge and considers it the perfect way to relax in the evening.
Peter brought the right balance of flexibility, discipline and fun to organising the bridge sessions. The sessions were varied, well-organized, yet relaxed and friendly.
Dates & Prices
We're sorry, there are no dates available for this holiday at the moment. Please check out our other tours and breaks or call our team on 0345 470 8558 to be notified of new dates as soon as they become available.
Prices are per person