Southern Lake District Discovery Tour

Code: CNHCR

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Activity types:

  • High Mountains
  • History
  • Newly Refurbished
  • Rural peace
From £359.00 - 3 to 7 nights

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Prices are per person

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Holiday overview

This Discovery Tour shows the best of Southern Lake District. Southern Lakeland has an abundance of delightful valleys and mountains, many of which were immortalised by illustrious Lakeland poets like Wordsworth and Alfred, Lord Tennyson. A steam train ride from Haverthwaite provides an excellent way to see the area, and a cruise on Windermere is the perfect way to enjoy the scenery. The Lakeland towns of Ambleside and Grange-over-Sands, the quaint villages of Hawkshead and Coniston and the historic Holker Hall, Muncaster Castle and medieval Cartmel round off a perfect destination.

Holiday highlights

  • Cruise on Windermere and catch a steam train from Haverthwaite
  • The Lakeland town of Ambleside and historic Grange-over-Sands
  • Holker Hall House & Gardens and Muncaster Castle
  • Dramatic mountain scenery of the Great Langdales
  • Experience the delightful villages of Hawkshead and Coniston and the medieval village of Cartmel
  • Optional short strolls of up to 1½ miles

Price includes

  • High quality Full Board en-suite accommodation and excellent food in our Country House
  • The services of our knowledgeable HF Holidays’ leader, ensuring you get the most from your holiday
  • Full-day excursions with all transport on touring days in a good-quality, comfortable mini-coach with a PA system
  • Admission cost for the Haverthwaite railway & Windermere lake cruise

In pictures...

Accommodation

HF Holidays' Monk Coniston in Lake District

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

Classic Rooms
• Check-in from 2:30pm
• Comfortable accommodation
• En-suite bathroom with bath or shower
• TV
• Hairdryer
• Tea and coffee-making facilities 
• Single rooms are available at no extra charge 
Premium Rooms
• Check-in from 1:30pm
• Enjoy extra space or exceptional views
• Toweling robe, complimentary slippers
• Same facilities as our classic rooms 
• Available from an extra £10 per person per night
Family Rooms
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

Facilities

• Excellent boot and drying rooms 
• Lounge 
• Dining room with lake views 
• Bar 
• Library
• 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

Dining

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.
 Take your fill from our famous self-service picnic lunches
A relaxed social dinner is a highlight of any stay at our Country Houses

An example of Conistonwater evening meal

Your evenings

Make the most of your evening or join us at the bar


Just relax and take it easy, or if you'd like to continue to chat with our guides and fellow guests then why not grab a drink or take part in one of our optional evening activities.

All of our bars are stocked with locally sourced drinks so you can really soak up your surroundings.

Accessibility

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.

More details on Coniston accessibility

Additional information

  • 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

Itinerary

During your Discovery Tour you will have the opportunity to visit many fascinating places of interest. The following is a suggested programme, but your HF Holidays' leader may adjust it at their discretion, taking into account factors such as weather, local opening times or the wishes of the group. 

Arrival day

You can check in to your room from 2.30pm onwards (premium rooms from 1pm). Please join us for afternoon tea.

Exterior of Holker Hall
Morecambe Bay and Holker Hall

Travel to Grange-Over-Sands, a charming Edwardian resort on the Cumbrian South Coast with fantastic views of Morecambe Bay. Visit the quaint historic village of Cartmel, home of the famous Sticky Toffee Pudding with its impressive medieval gatehouse and magnificent priory. Tour Holker Hall, one of Britain’s best loved stately homes, set in exceptionally beautiful countryside with gardens that merge into parkland, framed by the Lakeland Hills.

 

Overlooking Tarn Hows lake
Tarn Hows, Hawkshead and Hill Top

Visit stunning Tarn Hows, Lakeland’s famed beauty spot, and enjoy its tranquil magnificence with picturesque views towards the Helvellyn Range and the Langdale Pikes. Take a step back in time and experience Beatrix Potter’s life at Hill Top, her much loved Lake District Farm House and inspiration for many of her famous tales. Explore charming Hawkshead Village nestling in the vale of Esthwaite before strolling along the tranquil western shore of Lake Windermere beneath the imposing turrets and towers of the gothic revival Wray Castle, former holiday home to the Potter Family.

Red steam locomotive on the Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway


Eskdale railway and Muncaster Castle

Take a spectacular ride over the Wrynose and Hardknott passes to view the impressive Roman Fort at Hardknott. Ride on Lakeland’s most scenic miniature railway from Eskdale to the west coast village of Ravenglass. Visit the haunted historic Muncaster Castle with 70 acres of stunning gardens and the owl centre, returning over Corney Fell with superb views of the west coast and Irish Sea.

 

Free day

A free day for you to explore the local area or to relax in the Country House. Our Discovery Points help you make the most out of your free day. There’s plenty of maps and a selection of the best local walking routes, as well as weather forecasts and public transport options – plus details about other places to visit.

Windermere steamer
Haverthwaite steam train, Windermere Cruise and Blackwell Arts & Crafts

Ride on the Haverthwaite-to-Lakeside steam train before sailing to Bowness on the Windermere lake steamer. Then visit the internationally important icon of Arts and Craft architecture at Blackwell, with fine views overlooking England’s largest lake. Stroll amongst the magnificence of the Lakeland Horticultural Society’s gardens at Holehird.  Experience the bustling atmosphere of the jewel in Lakeland’s crown at Ambleside, with its quirky, most-photographed 300-year old Bridge House.

Overlooking Grasmere from Helm Crag
Dove Cottage & Grasmere

Stroll the gentle slopes of Loughrigg Fell with unforgettable views looking down in to the vales of Grasmere and Rydal. Enjoy a guided tour of Dove Cottage, home of the famed Lakeland poet William Wordsworth. Sample the delights of the quintessential Lake District village of Grasmere, forever associated with the Romantic Lake Poets and its unique, world-famous Gingerbread. Take in the scenery of the Great Langdale valley and stroll along the shores of Elterwater, enjoying refreshment at the much-acclaimed tea room, Chester’s By The River.

 

Depart after a leisurely breakfast

For maximum flexibility, admissions are not included; please remember to bring your National Trust or English Heritage cards if you have them. Otherwise please allow up to £10 per day for entrances; (there may be concessionary and group discounts which may reduce this price).

Sometimes things happen beyond our control – the weather, traffic jams or changes at the places we visit. If we need to adjust your holiday programme, for whatever reason, your leader will help smooth the way.

Local area

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 on Coniston WaterSteam 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

 

Steam locomotive on the Ravenglass & Eskdale railwayRavenglass & 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

 

Brantwood House

Just a couple of miles from Monk Coniston, John Ruskin's former home commands superb views over the lake. www.brantwood.org.uk

Tarn Hows
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.

Grizedale Forest
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

Levens Hall with impressive topiary in the gardenLevens Hall
Visit this stately home, famous for its magnificent formal garden and topiary displays. www.levenshall.co.uk

 

 

 

Dove Cottage, home to William WordsworthGrasmere
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

 

 

Steamer on WindermereWindermere

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

Travel to Conistonwater

Our address is: Monk Coniston, Coniston, Cumbria LA21 8AQ

How to get to us by train

By train:

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).

Get to us by Taxi

By taxi:

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.

Bus

By bus:

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

Driving to us

By car:

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.

 Travel by plane

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.

Leaders

Marilyn Bryce

Marilyn lives in Cumbria where she runs a B & B with about 100 acres of land, from where she has stunning views across the Solway Firth and also to the Lake District fells. She has created several big ponds to encourage wildlife and has planted over 50,000 trees which are all native broad leaf. Marilyn trained as a Blue Badge Guide and enjoys sharing her interest in the beauty and history of the local area. Her other work involves running murder mystery weekends and murder mystery dinners.

Steve D Bullen

Steve has been leading Natural World, UK Discovery Tour and Walking, and European & Worldwide holidays for HF Holidays for over 26 years. His main interests include wildlife, astronomy and geology, and he manages a small nature reserve in Lancaster. Steve is also a keen natural history photographer and his photos have been published in the BBC Wildlife Magazine, The Guardian, and local publications.

Tom McCafferty

Tom is a Blue Badge Guide for Cumbria and Hadrian’s Wall and has been guiding professionally since 2000. He is a true Cumbrian, born in Maryport on the West Coast and is a retired police officer with a wonderful sense of humour, dry wit. He possesses a natural ability to make you smile. He has a sincere passion about his home County and simply loves to share his knowledge and love of The Lake District, with its breathtaking spectacular scenery and legendary poets, authors and artists. Tom loves meeting people and relating tales of folk lore, history, characters and industrial heritage in this the most wondrous part of England.

 

Jill Durnford

Brought up in south-east England, Jill has lived in the West Country, Scotland and, since 1998, Cumbria. She has a real passion for Britain, its history, geology and wildlife and loves sharing that with other people. She loves visiting stately homes and gardens but is also interested in how ordinary people lived in the past. Jill works as a Blue Badge Guide which is the perfect job for combining her wide range of interests with a love of communicating with people.  

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Dates & Prices

Date Description Nights Brochure price Buy today for Book
6 Apr 2018 CNHCR - Discovery Tour - Conistonwater 3 £359.00 £359.00 Book Now
6 Apr 2018 CNHCR - Discovery Tour - Conistonwater 7 £799.00 £749.00 Early Booking Offer - Save £50.00 per person Book Now
9 Apr 2018 CNHCR - Discovery Tour - Conistonwater 4 £489.00 £489.00 Book Now
2 Jun 2018 CNHCR - Discovery Tour - Conistonwater 4 £529.00 £529.00 Book Now
2 Jun 2018 CNHCR - Discovery Tour - Conistonwater 7 £869.00 £819.00 Early Booking Offer - Save £50.00 per person Book Now
6 Jun 2018 CNHCR - Discovery Tour - Conistonwater 3 £369.00 £369.00 Book Now
30 Jun 2018 CNHCR - Discovery Tour - Conistonwater 4 £529.00 £529.00 Book Now
30 Jun 2018 CNHCR - Discovery Tour - Conistonwater 7 £869.00 £819.00 Early Booking Offer - Save £50.00 per person Book Now
4 Jul 2018 CNHCR - Discovery Tour - Conistonwater 3 £369.00 £369.00 Book Now
1 Sep 2018 CNHCR - Discovery Tour - Conistonwater 4 £529.00 £529.00 Book Now
1 Sep 2018 CNHCR - Discovery Tour - Conistonwater 7 £869.00 £819.00 Early Booking Offer - Save £50.00 per person Book Now
5 Sep 2018 CNHCR - Discovery Tour - Conistonwater 3 £369.00 £369.00 Book Now

Prices are per person

Information

  • Premium single room: £15 per night
  • Premium twin/double room: £10 per person per night
  • Non-member associate fee: £10 per person

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