4-Night Southern Lake District Gentle Walking Holiday

Duration: 4 nights
Type: Gentle Walks
Walking Grade: 1, 2 & 3
from £569pp

Walk in the footsteps of Wordsworth, Ruskin and Beatrix Potter, as you discover the places that stirred their imaginations. Enjoy the stunning mountain scenes with lakeside strolls, taking a cruise across the lake on the steam yacht Gondola, or enjoy getting nose-to-nose with the high peaks as you explore their heights. Whatever your passion, you’ll be struck with awe as you explore this much-loved area of the Lake District.

Holiday Highlights

  • Walk in the footsteps of Wordsworth, Ruskin and Beatrix Potter, as you discover the places that stirred their imaginations
  • Enjoy the stunning mountain scenes with lakeside strolls, taking a cruise across the lake on the steam yacht Gondola, or enjoy getting nose-to-nose with the high peaks as you explore their heights
  • Let your leader bring classic routes and offbeat areas to life
  • Spend the evenings in our country house where you can share a drink and re-live the days adventures

What’s included

  • High quality en-suite accommodation in our country house
  • Full board from dinner upon arrival to breakfast on departure day
  • 3 days guided walking
  • Use of our comprehensive Discovery Point
  • Choice of up to three guided walks each walking day
  • The services of HF Holidays Walking Leaders

Trip Notes

Trip notes are detailed, downloadable PDFs for each holiday.

On our Guided Walking holidays, we believe that choice is key. Our walks descriptions will help you choose according to your interests and fitness. The walks are grouped together with care by local experts to give the best experience. While every effort will be made to adhere to the described itinerary, we may occasionally vary the sequence shown here or substitute an alternative route to suit local conditions or for other operational reasons, potentially at short notice.

You're welcome to check in from 4pm onwards.

Option 1 - Tilberthwaite There and Back

Distance: 5 miles (8km)

Total Ascent: 800 feet (180m)

In Summary: This is a gentle walk mainly on tracks and quiet Lakeland roads, taking us into the beautiful Tilberthwaite Valley. Although quiet and peaceful now the area was once the centre of mining in the 1800s. We pass a very pretty farm, following the footpath through meadows with some interesting trees before making our way up the valley. After a brief spell through woods, we arrive at the open valley bottom with lovely views of both the valley and mountains. Lunch would normally be taken at the famous Andrew Gormley Sheepfold before making our way back on the opposite side of the valley, passing ruins of the mining on the hillside.

Highlight: The views of the surrounding mountains when in the valley bottom are stunning.

Option 2 - Torver, Lake Shore and Coniston Village

Distance: 8 miles (13km)

Ascent: 850 feet (260m)

In Summary: Join the Cumbria Way to Coniston village, then walk the old Coniston to Broughton railway line. Descend through woods and fields to Coniston Water and walk back to the house along the lake shore.

Highlight: The Cumbria Way stretch through meadow and fields with ‘the White Lady’ (a waterfall so called by locals), tumbling down the Yewdale Fells to your right. Beauty as nature intended.

Option 3 - Torver and Coniston Water

Distance: 10 miles (16km)

Ascent: 1,750 feet (540m)

In Summary: Head for Coppermines Valley and walk the lower slopes of Coniston Old Man to reach the old trading route known as Walna Scar. Head on towards Torver then drop down to Coniston Water and walk the shoreline back to the house.

Highlight: Hear the water lapping on the shore as you gaze over the water to the mountains beyond.

Option 1 - Coppermines Valley

Distance: 4 miles (6.5km) 

Ascent: 300 feet (80m) 

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 - Wharton Tarn, Grizedale and Brantwood

Distance: 7.5 miles (12.5km)

Ascent: 1,400 feet (430m)

In summary: A wooded walk to Wharton Tarn. Walk around the tarn before entering Grizedale Forest. The forest gives way to open fell affording excellent views of Coniston Water. Continue to Brantwood, the home of John Ruskin.

Highlight: The easy descent to Brantwood over open fell with spectacular lake and mountain views.

Option 3 - Tarn Hows, Carron Crag and Brantwood

Distance: 10.5 miles (17km)

Ascent: 1,650 feet (500m)

In Summary: Walk directly from the house through woods to Tarn Hows. Head to Grizedale Forest and its highest point standing above the trees, Carron Crag at 1025 above sea level. Continue through forest and open fell to Brantwood.

Highlight: The view from the summit of Carron Crag suddenly reveals itself and the views are all the more magical.

Option 1 - Tarn Hows and Lower Yewdale

Distance: 3.5 miles (5.5km)

Total Ascent: 600 feet (160m)

In Summary: We walk through mixed woodland ascending to the iconic Tarn Hows. After taking in the views and enjoying the tranquillity of the tarn, we make are way down to Glen Mary Bridge where we see a perfect example of a Banked Barn with a Spinning Gallery. The farm house may also be recognised by some as Hill Top in the film Miss Potter. We walk along the track used in the film, making our way to the entrance of Tilberthwaite Valley before making our way back to the house via pastures and good tracks.

Highlight: Tarn Hows is a beautiful spot near Coniston.

Option 2 - Little Langdale and High Tilberthwaite

Distance: 7.5 miles (12.5km)

Ascent: 1,300 feet (400m)

In Summary: A walk past Yew Tree Tarn to the picturesque valley of Little Langdale. Visit the impressive Cathedral Cave hewn out of the hillside and an ancient quarryman's bridge known as Slater Bridge. Return to the house via High Tilberthwaite. An abundance of riches!

Highlight: Cathedral Cave, an underground quarry of immense proportions.

Option 3 - Black Crag & Holme Fell

Distance: 8½ miles (13.5km) 

Ascent: 1,800 feet (560m) 

In SummaryWalk from Monk Coniston past Tarn Hows to the summits of two local hills, Black Crag and Holme Fell. 

Highlight: Holme Fell may be modest in height, but it commands extensive views over southern Lakeland. 


Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before making your way home. 

You're welcome to check in from 4pm onwards.

Option 1 - Skelwith Bridge to Langdale

Distance: 4½ miles (7km) 

Total ascent: 480 feet (140m)

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

Highlight: Great Langdale is a perfect example of a typical 'U' shaped glaciated valley, and the path we take through the centre of it offers some of the best opportunities to appreciate this geological formation 


Option 2 - Langdale Valley


Distance: 7 miles (11km) 

Total ascent: 700 feet (220m)

In Summary: Starting on Hollin Bank we descend to Colwith Force at the end of Little Langdale, before heading over to Skelwith Force. From here we walk up into Langdale Valley eventually reaching the New Dungeon Ghyll Hotel.  

Highlight: The two spectacular waterfalls of Colwith Force and Skelwith Force; two of the best cascades in the Lake District 


Option 3 - Above Langdale

Distance: 9 miles (14½km) 

Total ascent: 2,200 feet (680m) 

In Summary: Ascend to the great viewpoints of Side Pike and Lingmoor on the Langdale skyline. We descend to Elterwater Village to join the Cumbria Way along the base of this immense glacial valley. 

Highlight: 'Threading the needle' (squeezing through a narrow fissure) to reach the summit of Lingmoor, and its classic view of the Langdale Pikes. 


Option 1 - Troutbeck to Ambleside

Distance: 4 miles (6km)  

Ascent: 650 feet (200m) 

The walk in a nutshell: Starting in the village of Troutbeck, we ascend Robin Lane with picturesque views south over Windermere, eventually descending to Waterhead and Ambleside. 

Don't miss: Galava Roman Fort at Waterhead was a key location in Hadrian's attempt to control Northern Britain, linking via roman roads the top of Lake Windermere with Ravenglass to the West, and Hadrian's Wall in the North. 


Option 2 - Loughrigg Round

Distance: 7.5 miles (12.5km) 

Ascent: 1,350 feet (400m) 

The walk in a nutshell: A circular walk from Ambleside, we first ascend the fell side to Lily tarn, then descend to Loughrigg tarn and round to the pretty terrace overlooking Grasmere. We return via Rydal to Ambleside. 

Don’t miss: The spectacular Loughrigg terrace is the perfect sheltered bank for wildflowers. Throughout the seasons this bank changes colour from the white and yellow of the spring daffodils and snowdrops, through blue bluebells, and purple foxgloves, to the bold russets and golds of the wilting brackens and birch in autumn. A feast for the senses.


Option 3 - Wansfell Pike

Distance: 7 miles (11.5km) 

Total ascent: 2,000 feet (600m) 

The walk in a nutshell: A circular walk from Ambleside, this walk starts with a steep ascent up the side of Wansfell Pike. From here it is generally downhill to Troutbeck and then back around the corner of the fell to Ambleside via Skelghyll woods and Jenkins Crag. 

Don’t miss: The views on a clear day from the top of Wasfell Pike are stunning. Almost all of the ten miles of lake Windermere are visible to the south, and the ridges of Red Screes and Fairfield extend to the north, a real feeling of being amongst some of the big giants of the Lake District fells. 


Option 1 - Brantwood & Gondola

Distance: 4 miles (6.5km) 

Ascent: 300 feet (90m) 

The walk in a nutshell: Walk via the Coppermines Valley to Coniston village then cross the lake aboard the restored steam yacht Gondola to Brantwood House. Finally a short walk through the fields takes us back to Monk Coniston.

Don’t miss: The cruise across Coniston Water aboard the National Trust's restored steam yacht gondola; a fantastic way to appreciate this magnificent setting.


Option 2 - Little Langdale

Distance: 6½ miles (10.5km) 

Ascent: 1,050 feet (320m) 

The walk in a nutshell: Walk through the beautiful valley of Little Langdale, taking in Slaters Bridge and Cathedral Cavern, returning through the Tilberthwaite Valley to Coniston. 

Don’t miss: The incredible Cathedral Cavern, one of the Lake District's hidden gems, is monastic in state and awe-inspiring in scale. 


Option 3 - Blawith & Coniston Water

Distance: 9 miles (14.5km) 

Total ascent: 1,150 feet (360m) 

The walk in a nutshell: We start the day threading our way through the quiet Blawith Fells before emerging at the shores of Lake Coniston. We then take the lakeshore path up the lake finishing with a stroll through Coniston village and back to the house. 

Don’t miss: The stunning view from the top of the small but perfectly placed Beacon Fell includes the Coniston fells to the north and the sands of Morecambe Bay to the south. 


Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before making your way home. 

Monk Coniston

Wrapped in manicured gardens with stunning views over Coniston Water, Monk Coniston combines country house grandeur and romantic, gothic-style charm with contemporary touches to great effect among the rugged landscapes of the Lake District. Rocky mountains and grassy fells loom all around this handsome home, once owned by Beatrix Potter, and more latterly turned hikers’ hotel and owned by the National Trust. Fell-flecked scenery unfurls from the windows of the bedrooms in the main house, adjoining cottage and counting house. While the setting remains traditional and the grand entrance recalls a traditional era, the interiors have been swept into the present with bold patterns and comfy fabrics. Beyond the house, trails from the doorstep set off to explore the Lake District. Climb famous summits including Bow Fell, the Langdale Pikes and the Old Man of Coniston. Bag a series of Wainwright summits. Alternatively, slip into the beautiful valleys and stroll picturesque lakeside paths in search of secret corners such as Cathedral Cove in Little Langdale.


Need to know

Important Covid-19 steps we have taken for guest safety: Please Read

As we slowly reopen in the wake of the Coronavirus lockdown, our country house stays are set to be organised a little differently; extra steps have been taken to keep our guests, house teams and leaders safe while we return to action. We ask all our guests to respect the measures put in place.

Initially the overall capacity of the houses has been reduced. Guests must wear face coverings in public spaces. To adhere to social distancing guidelines, we have taken the necessary steps to space out furniture and seating in public areas. In addition, a one-way system will be in place around the house. Adequate signage will be displayed to support the direction of travel to be followed by guests and house teams.

As a temporary measure, we will not be servicing rooms during a stay. Extra tea, coffee, milk, and toiletries will be made available on request for all guests. It is recommended that guests bring their own toiletries for the duration of their stay. We have removed all non-essential and reusable items from our rooms for the meantime including cushions, hairdryers, bathrobes, bed throws, and printed materials to reduce the number of items that need to be disinfected. Hairdryers will be available on request. Clean towels will be available on request. We will though be increasing the frequency of cleaning in our public areas providing particular attention to frequently touched items including door handles and handrails.

For now, there is no cream tea on arrival day. We have also adapted our food offering to remove all buffets and open food items. Different sittings may be required for breakfast and dinner due to the occupancy and size of the house. Picnic lunches will now be pre-ordered the night before from an order form in the room. The bar in each country house will be open, and we will be offering a table service for drinks. At this time there is no, or only a very limited, evening social programme available. Outdoor swimming pools at those houses that have them will re-open throughout August, except at Freshwater Bay House, where the pool will remain closed for 2020. Indoor swimming pools will remain closed.

For more information and to see all the steps taken, visit our page on how house stays will be adapted.


Tea & coffee-making facilities, TV, Hairdryer, Toiletries, Wi-Fi

Stay in the smartly presented rooms in the main house. With 32 rooms, Monk Coniston has plenty of space and there’s a range of Good, Better and Best Rooms to choose from. Rooms with a view are well worth the extra spend as you’ll be overlooking the gardens or the lake.  Our favourite is Room 9 on the first floor, which contains some of the original features from when it was first built in 1885, a striking sailboat-patterned wallpaper and opens on to beautiful views of the gardens and fields that slope down to the shore of Coniston Water.

All ‘Good’ rooms are ensuite and furnished to a high standard. There are also several ‘Better’ Rooms that are either larger or have a desirable view, a more luxurious mattress and larger television – upgrade your stay for just an extra £15-25 per person per night. You can choose a specific room for an extra £30 per room, subject to availability. Upgrade supplements still apply.


Free Wi-Fi, boot room and drying room, extensive garden, lounge, bar, Lakeland barn for activities, library and board games to borrow

After a day exploring the Lake District, return to the house. Stroll through the extensive grounds with their putting green and croquet lawn and uncover the hidden walled garden on the hill behind the house. Take a turn around the National Trust nature trail and look out for the fabulous, rare mature trees. Stumble on the small secret folly stood quietly among the bluebells when they’re out and the lush green grass when they’re not. Catch up with fellow guests in the bright and spacious lounge or grab a drink from the airy bar and wander down the garden to the bench overlooking Coniston Water for the perfect place to enjoy a sundowner – you might even spot the restored steam yacht Gondola cruising the five-mile length of the lake. After hours, duck into the converted Lakeland barn with its exposed beams and rustic chandelier for evening activities and skittles.

Food & Drink

As at all our country houses, holidays are full board, from afternoon tea served as a welcome treat through that evening’s meal to a hearty breakfast on the day of departure. Lunch is a chance to stock up on our famous picnic snacks. Food at Monk Coniston is varied and tasty and has a strong emphasis on ingredients from the area and seasonal produce. Once a week the bright dining room with its giant fireplace and oversized mirror hosts a Local Food Night, when, over a sociable evening, you might try a five-course feast of regional flavours. From a cup of Monk Coniston walled garden vegetable soup to a Wabberthwaies Cumberland sausage – the only Cumberland sausage to have a royal warrant and to be served on Concorde – to twelve-hour slow cooked Cumbrian lamb and Ravenglass crab and Morecambe Bay shrimp cakes, the kitchen puts out the best of the Cumbrian countryside. Look out too for the Kendal Mint cheesecake among the assiette of deserts.


For accessibility and assistance information, please contact our expert team on 020 3974 8865

Coniston - External.jpg

Getting to Monk Coniston

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

More Information

What to Bring

“There’s no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong type of clothing!” goes the adage. Come prepared for all eventualities and you’ll walk in comfort as well as safety. Britain’s famous for its changeable weather, so here’s our advice on what to wear and bring.


  • Waterproof walking boots providing ankle support and good grip.
  • A waterproof jacket and over-trousers
  • Gloves and a warm hat (it can be chilly at any time of the year)
  • Rucksack
  • Water bottle (at least 1 litre capacity)
  • A small torch (everywhere in winter, year round in mountains)
  • Sun hat and sunscreen
    Denim jeans and waterproof capes are not suitable on any walks.


  • Several layers of clothing, which can be added or removed
  • Specialist walking socks to avoid blisters.
  • A first aid kit inc plasters– your leader’s first aid kit doesn’t contain any medication
  • Sit mat (insulated pad to sit on when you stop for a break)

You might also want

  • Walking poles, particularly useful for descents.
  • Insect repellent
  • Flask for hot drinks
  • Rigid lunch box
  • Gaiters
  • Blister kit (eg Compeed) just in case
  • Waterproof rucksack liner

Guest Reviews

All holidays are subject to availability. Prices are subject to change.
Prices based on two people sharing. Supplements may apply.
Non-member fee: £20 per person.

Holiday Prices

Date (Start - End) Nights Itinerary Price Status Trip Notes Book
12 Oct - 16 Oct
4 2020 Gentle Walking £515 Unavailable to Book Unavailable Trip Notes
03 May - 07 May
4 Gentle Walk £569 Unavailable to Book Unavailable Trip Notes
01 Jun - 05 Jun
4 Gentle Walk £569 Available Trip Notes Book Now
15 Jun - 19 Jun
4 Gentle Walk £569 Available Trip Notes Book Now
17 Aug - 21 Aug
4 Gentle Walk £569 Available Trip Notes Book Now
07 Sep - 11 Sep
4 Gentle Walk £569 Unavailable to Book Unavailable Trip Notes
14 Sep - 18 Sep
4 Gentle Walk £569 Available Trip Notes Book Now
4 nights
Gentle Walks
Walking Grade:
1 & 2

4 nights from £569pp

...or call 020 3974 8865

For group bookings of 10+ people click here

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