Southern Lake District Spring & Winter Walking Holiday
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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.
Guided Walking continues throughout the year. Spring and Winter offer fantastic walking days in the Lake District - blow away the cobwebs and enjoy a great selection of guided walks with us.
Between November and Easter we carefully adjust our usual walks to suit the season. We'll often end the day in a cosy pub or tearoom - perfect for warming up after an invigorating walk.
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.
These rooms are all ensuite and furnished to a good standard. They include:
These rooms are slightly larger and/or have a better view. They include:
Only an extra £15 per person per night
These rooms truly are the best in the house for extra luxury during your stay. They include:
Only an extra £20 per person per night
Choose Your Room: Our new “Choose Your Room” service is available at our UK country houses, providing the option to choose and confirm a specific room for an extra £30 per room. Supplements to upgrade to 'Better' or 'Best' rooms still apply. The choice of room number must be of the same room type as originally booked and is subject to availability.
At the house
|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.
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 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
Discover the Lake District on Foot
Explore the beautiful Lake District on our guided walks. We offer a great range of walks to suit everyone - from gentle lakeside walks, to mountain walks. Join our friendly and knowledgeable guides who will bring this stunning national park to life.
- Our experienced guides offer a choice of walks each day, adjusted for the season
- We'll often end the day in a cosy pub or tearoom
- Choose the option which best suits your interests and fitness
- We provide flexible holidays. Join our guided walks, explore independently, or relax at Monk Coniston
Select the date of your holiday to see which walks are running during your stay.
Tarn Hows and Grisedale
Available on: 2 Mar 2019, 9 Mar 2019, 23 Mar 2019, 2 Nov 2019, 9 Nov 2019, 16 Nov 2019
Option 1: Tarn Hows
Distance: 6 miles (10km)
Total ascent: 1,050 feet (320m)
The walk in a nutshell: Walk in the footsteps of Beatrix Potter through the woods from Monk Coniston to the stunningly beautiful lake of Tarn Hows, returning via Yew Tree Farm; a great walk right on the doorstep.
Don’t miss: Yew Tree Farm was donated to the National Trust by Beatrix Potter and used for the film Miss Potter.
Option 2: Tom Heights
Distance: 7 miles (11½km)
Total ascent: 1,100 feet (340m)
The walk in a nutshell: Walk across fields to Yew Tree Farm and the Yewdale Valley. After ascending Tom Heights we return via Tarn Hows.
Don’t miss: Tom Heights is dwarfed by the surrounding peaks, but it enjoys great views over the local countryside.
Option 3: Tarn Hows and Grisedale Forest
Distance: xx miles (xxkm)
Total ascent: xxx feet (xxxm)
The walk in a nutshell:
Grasmere and Easdale
Available on: 3 Mar 2019, 10 Mar 2019, 24 Mar 2019, 3 Nov 2019, 10 Nov 2019, 17 Nov 2019
Option 1: Grasmere & Easedale
Distance: 6 miles (10km)
Total ascent: 1000 feet (300m)
The walk in a nutshell: Starting from the village of Grasmere we’ll walk to Easedale Tarn, an impressive glacial lake.
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 2: Helm Crag
Distance: 6 miles (9½km)
Total ascent: 1,600 feet (480m)
The walk in a nutshell: Ascend Helm Crag one of the most distinctive Lakeland Fells with the ‘Lion and the Lamb’ rock formations on the summit. A grassy descent takes us to the valley giving the option of continuing to Easedale Tarn with its spectacular waterfall.
Don’t miss: A short but spectacular walk with amazing views.
Option 3: Helm Crag & Calf Crag
Distance: 8 miles (13km)
Total ascent: 1,950 feet (580m)
The walk in a nutshell: 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.
Don’t miss: It's a steep climb to the top of Helm Crag, but you'll be rewarded with great views over Grasmere.
Troutbeck and the Far Eastern Fells
Available on: 5 Mar 2019, 12 Mar 2019, 5 Nov 2019, 12 Nov 2019, 19 Nov 2019
Option 1: Troutbeck to Ambleside
Distance: 6 miles (9½km)
Total ascent: 900 feet (280m)
The walk in a nutshell: Enjoy fabulous views of Windermere from the lower slopes of Wansfell on a walk from 17th century Jesus Church at Troutbeck to Ambleside.
Don’t miss: There's plenty of time to explore the popular town of Ambleside or relax by the lakeshore.
Option 2: Elterwater & Loughrigg
Distance: 8½ miles (13½km)
Total ascent: 1,500 feet (460m)
The walk in a nutshell: We start today's walk by following the Cumbria Way to the village of Elterwater. Ascending to Loughrigg fell we are treated to jaw dropping views over the Langdales and across Rydal Water, before beginning our descent to Ambleside.
Don’t miss: Spectacular views from the tracks around Loughrigg Fell
Option 3: Wansfell
Distance: To be confirmed
Total ascent: To be confirmed
The walk in a nutshell: Enjoy views from Wansfell Pike before descending to Troutbeck and following the route taken by the easier group back to Ambleside.
Don’t miss: Beatrix Potter used to live at Troutbeck Park Farm, where she bred herdwick sheep. The property, and the sheep are now the property of the National Trust.
The Langdale Valley
Available on: 6 Mar 2019, 13 Mar 2019, 6 Nov 2019, 13 Nov 2019, 20 Nov 2019
Option 1: Langdale Valley
Distance: 7 miles (11km)
Total ascent: 700 feet (220m)
The walk in a nutshell: Follow the Langdale Valley past Elterwater village, to the New Dungeon Ghyll Hotel through increasingly grand scenery.
Don’t miss: The two spectacular waterfalls of Colwith Force and Skelwith Force; two of the best cascades in the Lake District.
Option 2: Stickle Tarn
Distance: 7½ miles (12km)
Total ascent: 2,100 feet (640m)
The walk in a nutshell: We start today's walk in Skelwith Bridge, passing Loughrigg Tarn before ascending to Swinescar Pike and Stickle Tarn. We end the walk at the New Dungeon Ghyll pub, where we'll have the opportunity to stop for a refreshing drink!
Don’t miss: Stickle Tarn was enlarged by the building of a stone dam in 1838 and is used to supply water for the inhabitants of Langdale.
Option 3: Above Langdale
Distance: 9 miles (14½km)
Total ascent: 2,200 feet (680m)
The walk in a nutshell: 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.
Don’t miss: 'Threading the needle' (squeezing through a narrow fissure) to reach the summit of Lingmoor, and its classic view of the Langdale Pikes.
The Coniston Fells
Available on: 7 Mar 2019, 14 Mar 2019, 7 Nov 2019, 14 Nov 2019, 21 Nov 2019
Option 1: Eastern Coniston Water
Distance: To be confirmed
Total ascent: To be confirmed
The walk in a nutshell: We take our time to explore the Eastern shores of Coniston water today, walking from Sunny Bank farm to Monk Coniston.
Don’t miss: Coniston Water is the third largest lake in the Lake District, and measures five miles long by half a mile wide.
Option 2: Blawith Fells
Distance: 9 miles (14½km)
Total ascent: 1,150 feet (360m)
The walk in a nutshell: Walking over Blawith Fells we follow the Cumbria Way along the Eastern Shores of Coniston Water to Monk Coniston.
Don’t miss: Our highest point today gives us a fantastic opportunity to enjoy unspoilt views over Coniston Water
Option 2: Old Man of Coniston
Distance: 9 miles (14½km)
Total ascent: 2,800 feet (860m)
The walk in a nutshell: An opportunity to climb to the summit of the Old Man of Coniston – the highest peak in the local area. We’ll pass two mountain lakes – Goats Water on the ascent and Levers Water on our return to Coniston.
Don’t miss: The sense of achievement when you reach the top of the 'Old Man' - as one of the more accessible big fells it is a magnet for many walkers.
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.
Dates & Prices
|Date||Description||Nights||Brochure price||Buy today for||Book|
|1 Mar 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||3||£339.00||£294.00||Book Now|
|1 Mar 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||7||£725.00||£625.00||Book Now|
|4 Mar 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||4||£435.00||£365.00||Book Now|
|8 Mar 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||7||£725.00||£625.00||Book Now|
|8 Mar 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||3||£339.00||£294.00||Book Now|
|11 Mar 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||4||£435.00||£365.00||Book Now|
|22 Mar 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||3||£339.00||£294.00||Book Now|
|1 Nov 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||7||£725.00||£600.00||Book Now|
|1 Nov 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||3||£339.00||£289.00||Book Now|
|4 Nov 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||4||£435.00||£365.00||Book Now|
|8 Nov 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||7||£725.00||£600.00||Book Now|
|8 Nov 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||3||£339.00||£289.00||Book Now|
|11 Nov 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||4||£435.00||£365.00||Book Now|
|18 Nov 2019||CNSPW - Spring & Winter Walking - Conistonwater||4||£435.00||£365.00||Book Now|
Prices are per person