Outdoor Escapes at Derwentwater

Guided Walking for guests escaping the working day


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Activity types:

  • Free WiFi
  • High Mountains


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Choosing the level of your walks

Our easy grading system shows whether a region offer gentle strolls or more challenging routes to help you choose the right holiday for you. Difficulty is measured on many factors such as distance, ascent/descent, terrain, weather and more. There's no magic formula, but from our experience we grade our walks 1 to 5 (where 1 is easy and 5 hard). Our challenger holidays require a high level of fitness and stamina.

More about difficulty levels

From £334.00 - 3 to 7 nights


Prices are per person

Room 1:
Room 2:
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Holiday overview

Our Outdoor Escapes are an ideal way to end the working week. Enjoy a few days away, or a longer holiday, with people on the same wavelength as you. During the day enjoy the choice of three guided walks - take it easy on our easier walks, or relish the challenge of our longer or mountain walks. Known as the ‘Queen of the Lakes’, Derwent Water’s gentle beauty is easy to explore on our Outdoor Escapes, guided walking holidays. Surrounded by the picture-postcard valleys of Buttermere and Borrowdale and lofty mountains, the sheer splendour of these landscapes is guaranteed to inspire you.

In pictures...


Derwentback Accommodation

Set right on the shores of Derwent Water our Country House treats you to scenic walking straight from its door. Admire stunning panoramas across the mirror-smooth lake set against the backdrop of razor-edged ridges and humpbacked fells.


 Choose your room

Classic Rooms
• Check in from 2:30pm
• Comfortable accommodation
• En-suite bathroom with bath or shower
• 23 inch TV
• Hairdryer
• Tea and coffee-making facilities
• Double or two single beds
• Toiletries
• Sole occupancy available on request for an extra £20 per night
Premium Rooms
• 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
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


• Welcoming bar with local beer
• Conservatory with superb views
• Extensive gardens
• Lake jetty
• Formal Garden
• Putting green
• Croquet lawn
• Boot Room
• Drying room
• Free WiFi in some public rooms
• Large, comfortable lounge
• Attractive dining room
• Board games and books
• Mini-golf


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 Derwentwater 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.


Due to the layout and age of Derwent Bank, bedrooms within the main house are not accessible for wheelchair users, with all accommodation being reached by stairs. We do have some chalets in the grounds which are on the ground floor which can be used for wheelchair users, however mobility will be restricted in the room. Once you have gained access to the house all public rooms are accessible for wheelchairs.

More details on Derwent Bank accessibilty

Additional information

  • The fire procedure is displayed in each room and explained to guests on arrival. Guests requiring assistance during an evacuation should identify themselves on arrival
  • Mobile phone reception is generally good in the main building
  • Assistance dogs accompanying a visually or hearing impaired guest 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 is provided


Discover the Lake District on Foot

Explore the very best of the Lake District on our guided walks. We offer the opportunity to climb famous summits including Great Gable, Helvellyn and Cat Bells. Alternatively explore the beautiful valleys and lakeside paths seeking out the best viewpoints. Join our friendly and knowledgeable guides who will bring this stunning national park to life.

  • Our experienced guides offer the choice of three different walks each day
  • Choose the option which best suits your interests and fitness
  • We provide flexible holidays. Join our guided walks, explore independently, or relax at Derwent Bank


Saturday: Skiddaw & Latrigg

Option 1: Latrigg

View from the summit of Latrigg

Distance: 5½ - 7 miles

Total ascent: 1,300 feet

The walk in a nutshell: Walk through Brundholme Woods then up onto the summit of Lattrigg; one of the Lake District's finest lower hills.

Don’t miss: Latrigg is one of the lowest of the Lakeland fells but it really packs a punch - an outstanding view over Derwentwater.

Option 2: Skiddaw

The mountain of Skiddaw, seen from Walla Crag

Distance: 9 miles

Total ascent: 2,500 feet

The walk in a nutshell: Ascend to the summit of Skiddaw via the the broad 'tourist' path. We'll then descend via Carl Side and Dodd, and back to Keswick.

Don’t miss: That sense of achivement as you reach the summit of England's 4th highest peak.

Option 3: Skiddaw via Ullock Pike

Three walkers climbing a mountain

Distance: 11½ miles

Total ascent: 3,150 feet

The walk in a nutshell: Ascend to the top of Skiddaw via Ullock Pike and Longside Edge, with views over Bassenthwaite Lake. Our descent takes us via the remote Skiddaw House and follow the Cumbria Way to Keswick.

Don’t miss: Celebrate your achievement with a pint at the Dog & Gun.


Sunday: Ullswater & Helvellyn

Option 1: Aira Force & Ullswater

Steamer on Ullswater

Distance: 6½ miles (10½km)

Total ascent: 1,300 feet (400m) of ascent.

The walk in a nutshell: Visit the spectacular Aira Force waterfall, then follow the Ullswater Way along the panoramic balcony path beneath Gowbarrow Fell. We finish at Pooley Bridge for a cruise along the length of the lake o Glenridding.

Don’t miss: See Ullswater from the water, and on foot as you discover this most beautiful of the Cumbrian lakes.

Option 2: Place Fell & Ullswater

View over Ullswater from the slopes of Helvellyn

Distance: 8 miles

Total ascent: 2,100 feet

The walk in a nutshell: Make the moderately steep ascent to the top of Place Fell that commands an excellent view at the head of Ullswater. We decend to follow the attractive lakeside path to Glenridding.

Don’t miss: Ullswater is one of the area's most attractive lakes. You'll enjoy great views towards  Helvellyn and the North Pennines.

Option 3: Helvellyn via the Edges


Distance: 8½ miles

Total ascent: 3,000 feet

The walk in a nutshell: A famous ascent of Helvellyn, England's third highest peak. We'll follow the narrow Striding Edge ridge to the summit, returning via the equally impressive Swirral Edge.

Don’t miss: Striding Edge isn't for the feint hearted; however it is one of the Lake District's classic walks with a great sense of achivement as you climb the final rocky steps onto the summit.


Monday: A day to explore independently

There's plenty to enjoy locally. You may enjoy one of these options, or see the other suggestions on the 'local area' tab.

Derwent Water launch

Ferry on Derwent Water

Take a leisurely journey around Derwent Water on the ferry - a great way to see the surrounding mountains from a different perspective. The nearest stop at Nichol End is just a few minutes’ walk from Derwent Bank.


Wordsworth's Dove Cottage at Grasmere

Grasmere is about 30 minutes’ drive from Derwent Bank and is famous with 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. Don't forget to sample the famous Grasmere gingerbread.

Self-guided walks

Discovery Point with self-guided route notes

Our Discovery Point at Derwent Bank contains a wealth of recommended walking routes - detailed route notes for you to borrow contain route maps, and information about the places of interest on the walk. There's also a comprehensive library of local maps and guidebooks.


Tuesday: Cat Bells & Derwentwater

Option 1: Cat Bells Terrace

Canoeists on Derwentwater

Distance: 6½ miles

Total ascent: 1,100 feet

The walk in a nutshell: Follow the elevated path along Cat Bells terrace, then return along the beautiful lakeshore path.

Don’t miss: This stunning route is right on our doorstep. Throughout the walk you'll enjoy stunning views over Derwenwater and the surrounding Lakeland fells.

Option 2: Cat Bells & High Spy

View from the top of Cat Bells

Distance: 7 miles

Total ascent: 1,850 feet

The walk in a nutshell: Start high in the mountains at the Honister Pass for a great walk over High Spy, Maiden Moor and Cat Bells.

Don’t miss: The shapely summit of Cat Bells is one of the most popular fells in the Lake District. There are a few rocky sections, but your efforts will be rewarded with a breathtaking view over the lake and the surrounding fells.

Option 3: Newlands Round

Mountains on the Newlands Round

Distance: 10 miles

Total ascent: 3,100 feet

The walk in a nutshell: A fantastic high-level traverse of the Newlands Valley skyline. We start at the top of the Newlands Pass and take in the five 'Wainwright' summits of Robinson, Dale Head, High Spy, Maiden Moor and Cat Bells.

Don’t miss: With exhilarating high-level walking throughout, this classic route will appeal to all keen hillwalkers.

Image 1: VisitEngland/Keswick Mountain Fesitval/Dougie Cunningham

Wednesday: Exploring the Northern Fells

Option 1: Cumbria Way

Herdwick sheep

Distance: 6 miles

Total ascent: 650 feet

The walk in a nutshell: Head to the Northern Lake District for a walk along the Cumbria Way to the villages of Caldbeck and Hesket Newmarket.

Don’t miss: Seek out for John Peel's grave in Caldbeck churchyard.

Option 2: Carrock Pike

Summit cairn on Carrock Fell

Distance: 8½ miles

Total ascent: 1,850 feet

The walk in a nutshell: Walk over the twin summits of Carrock Fell and High Pike before a steady descent to the pub at Hesket Newmarket.

Don’t miss: This is an opportunity to explore a lesser known part of the Lake District. Great walking without the crowds.

Option 3: Northern Fells Traverse

Green hills of Great Cockup

Distance: 10 miles

Total ascent: 2,400 feet

The walk in a nutshell: A grand traverse of the Northern Fells to Hesket Newmarket, taking in the summits of Great Sca Fell, The Knott and High Pike.

Don’t miss: Reaching the brilliantly named summit of Great Cockup - yes it really does exist!

Thursday: Great Gable & Borrowdale

Option 1: Jaws of Borrowdale

View over Borrowdale

Distance: 6½ miles

Total ascent: 700 feet

The walk in a nutshell: Explore the green valley of Borrowdale as we follow the River Derwent from the foot of the mountains at Seathwaite. Visit the pretty village of Rosthwaite then pass through the 'Jaws of Borrowdale' to the village of Grange.

Don’t miss: We'll stop to see the 2,000 ton Bowder Stone, and Dalton's Cave (once home to the Lakeland legend Millican Dalton).

Option 2: Fleetwith Pike

Group of walkers near Fleetwith Pike

Distance: 7½ miles

Total ascent: 2,450 feet

The walk in a nutshell: A circular walk from the top of the Honister Pass enables you to experience the high mountains without too much ascent. Discover the heritage of the Lakeland slate mines as you make your way to the top of Fleetwith Pike.

Don’t miss: Fleetwith Pike is a fantastic viewpoint with a classic panorama over Buttermere and Crummock Water.

Option 3: Great Gable

Domed summit of Great Gable

Distance: 6 miles

Total ascent: 3,200 feet

The walk in a nutshell: Walk from Seathwaite to the grand summit of Great Gable. Our route takes us past Styhead Tarn and along the Gable Traverse; a narrow balcony path along the mountainside.

Don’t miss: Look out for the famous Napes Needle and Sphinx Rock on the way to the summit, then soak up the magnificent view over the Lake District's highest peaks.



Local area

Discover the Lake District

The Lake District is England’s premier national park with outstanding mountain scenery.

The nearest town is Keswick, about two miles away. As a popular tourist destination it has a range of facilities including supermarkets, banks, a post office, pubs and cafés. It is also well known for its huge number of outdoor shops where you can buy an array of clothing and equipment for the outdoors.

During your visit to Derwent Bank you may enjoy visiting the following places of interest:

Derwent Water ferryDerwentwater Launch
Take a leisurely journey around Derwentwater on the ferry - a great way to see the surrounding mountains from a different perspective. The nearest stop at Nichol End is just a few minutes’ walk from Derwent Bank. www.keswick-launch.co.uk



Outside of the theater by the lakeTheatre by the Lake
Situated by the lakeshore in Keswick, the theatre offers an excellent repertoire of plays in the main house and smaller studio theatre. The theatre’s popularity means that advance booking is recommended, especially in the high season. www.theatrebythelake.com



Honister Slate Mine
Go underground on the mine tour at this famous Lake District mine which is situated at the top of Honister Pass between Borrowdale and Buttermere. Here you can travel underground and learn about the history of Lake District slate production. Honister is around 30 minutes' drive from Derwent Bank, and can also be reached directly using the Honister Rambler bus. www.honister.com

Whinlatter Forest & Go Ape!
Relax at the visitors centre and cafe, or follow the excellent new mountain bike trail; one of the best in Britain. The high-ropes Go Ape course is great option for active teenagers. www.forestry.gov.uk/whinlatter or www.goape.co.uk

Derwent Water Marina
Hire a canoe or sailing boat and enjoy one of England’s most beautiful lakes. Just five minutes’ walk from Derwent Bank. www.derwentwatermarina.co.uk

Dove Cottage, home to William WordsworthGrasmere
Grasmere is about 30 minutes’ drive from Derwent Bank and is famous with 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. Wordsworth’s birthplace can also be visited in Cockermouth; a pleasant market town to the north-west of Derwent Bank. Both Grasmere and Cockermouth can be reached by local bus from Keswick. www.wordsworth.org.uk

Steamer ferry on Ullswater lakeUllswater
About 30 minutes’ drive from Derwent Bank is Ullswater, arguably the most beautiful of the Cumbrian lakes. Enjoy its glorious scenery either on foot or by steamer. If you are visiting the Ullswater area you could also visit the superb waterfall of Aira Force or the country house and gardens at Dalemain. www.ullswater-steamers.co.uk or www.dalemain.com


Lake District Wildlife Park
Well worth a visit for the whole family. You can watch the antics of the otters, apes and monkeys and marvel at the flying displays of eagles and vultures. www.lakedistrictwildlifepark.co.uk

Carlisle, about 45 minutes from Derwent Bank is the historic county town of Cumbria. Here you’ll find a good selection of shops, the cathedral, and castle. Of particular interest is the Tullie House Museum which is recognised for its exciting, varied events and exhibitions programme and is full of exciting interactive displays. www.tulliehouse.co.uk


Travel to Derwentwater

Our address is: Derwent Bank, Portinscale, Nr Keswick, Cumbria CA12 5TY

How to get to us by train

By train:

The nearest train station is at Penrith on the main line between London and Glasgow. 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).

Pendolino train at speed 

Use an HF transfer

HF station transfer - great value!

Our station transfer operates every Friday and Monday between Penrith station and Derwent Bank. The pickup is at 4.50pm from Penrith railway station. On departure day the transfer will get you back to Penrith station by 9.50am. This transfer costs just £16 return, however a place must be reserved at least 7 days in advance by calling 0345 470 7558.


Get to us by Taxi

By taxi:

If you can’t meet our station transfer, the 20 mile journey from Penrith to Derwent Bank can be made by taxi. Pre-booked taxis cost approx £30 per journey (or around £50 if not pre-booked). Details of our current recommended taxi company and rates will be sent to you with your booking. The return taxi journey can be arranged on your behalf by the Derwent Bank Manager.



By bus:

The X5 bus runs approximately every hour from Penrith station. The nearest bus stop is on the A66, about ¾ mile walk from Derwent Bank. Alight at the Portinscale bus stop and take the road on the left (signposted to Portinscale, Grange and the Newlands Valley). Follow this road through Portinscale village - Derwent Bank is on the left-hand side after the Derwentwater Marina.

Alternatively catch the bus to Keswick and then take a short taxi journey to Derwent Bank in Portinscale.

For bus times see www.traveline.info

Bus in Keswick

Driving to us

 By car:

From Penrith - leave the M6 motorway at junction 40 and take the A66 towards Keswick. After 17 miles you'll reach a roundabout in Keswick - continue ahead following signs to Cockermouth and Workington. One mile beyond the roundabout, and 200yds beyond the B5289 turning to Keswick, turn left off off the A66 signposted to Portinscale, Grange and the Newlands Valley. Derwent Bank is approx ¾ mile along this road on the left after the Derwentwater Marina and before the Nichol End Marina. There is a large car park available at Derwent Bank.


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 Penrith - this is straightforward journey - allow 2 hours to Penrith. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times.

From Penrith station you can complete the journey to Derwent Bank using our transfer, by bus, or by taxi (see above).

Flying to London Heathrow airport is another option, but has a longer onward train journey - allow at least 4½ hours to reach Penrith. 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 Penith takes 3 hours. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times.

 Quantas Boeing 747


Dates & Prices

Date Description Nights Brochure price Buy today for Book
21 Sep 2018 DBBOE - Guided Walking - Outdoor Escapes - Derwentwater 3 £359.00 £334.00 Save £25 off pp - 3 night special Book Now
21 Sep 2018 DBBOE - Guided Walking - Outdoor Escapes - Derwentwater 7 £845.00 £775.00 Save £70 Per Person Book Now
24 Sep 2018 DBBOE - Guided Walking - Outdoor Escapes - Derwentwater 4 £515.00 £470.00 Save £45 off pp - 4 night special Book Now

Prices are per person

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