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Grasmere

Situated in central Cumbria, Grasmere was formerly part of the county of Westmorland, and lies adjacent to the lake of the same name. With many connections to famous poets, including William Wordsworth, Grasmere has evolved into one of the most popular Lake District destinations.

William Wordsworth lived in Grasmere for fourteen years, and described it as “the loveliest spot that man hath ever found.”


The famous writer, Thomas de Quincey, moved into Dove Cottage when Wordsworth left, and from the 18th Century onwards, artists took advantage of the stunning Grasmere countryside to inspire their paintings. Once the new turnpike roads were completed in the late 18th century and the railway had arrived in Windermere in 1847, wealthy Victorian tourists flocked to the Lake District to experience the landscapes which inspired the famous poets of the day.  Grasmere, Rydal and Ambleside acquired large new hotels to accommodate the tourists, many dating from the late 19th century.

To celebrate its long association with artists and painters, Grasmere now hosts an annual Lakeland Artist´s Society Exhibition.


The nearby hamlet of Rydal is associated with two of the most influential families to reside in the Lake District –the Le Flemings and the Wordsworths. Rydal Hall was once home to the Le Fleming family, and Rydal Mount was Wordsworth´s home for the last 37 years of his life.

Surrounded by woodlands and open countryside, the beautiful lakes of Grasmere and Rydal Water attract visitors from all over the UK. For stunning views of both lakes, stroll along the elevated walkway along Loughrigg Terrace. Wordsworth´s Seat at Rydal Water also offers fabulous lake views.

Both lakes attract a wide range of water birds, including coots, swans and great crested grebes. Heron Island is situated in the middle of Rydal Water and is a refuge for red deer, who have been known to swim across the island from White Moss Common.

Fell walks from Grasmere and Rydal include: Helm Crag and the Fairfield Horseshoe. Another well known and popular walk in the area is to Easdale Tarn, to the north west of Grasmere.

Dora´s Field at Rydal is also steeped in history and is covered with bluebells and daffodils during the springtime. The land was once bought by William Wordsworth to build a house on when he was threatened with eviction from Rydal Mount. In the event, he was allowed to stay at Rydal, and gifted the land to his daughter, Dora. When Dora died in 1847, aged just 40, William and Mary Wordsworth planted hundreds of daffodils on the field in memory of their daughter. Access to Dora´s Field is available from the churchyard or the gardens of Rydal Mount.
Grasmere gingerbread

First produced in 1870, Grasmere gingerbread can still be bought from the Old Gingerbread Shop next to the church. First made by Sarah Nelson using a secret recipe, the spicy gingerbread is now sold all over the world, and was originally popular with Victorian travellers who came to Grasmere to see Wordsworth´s grave.

Dove Cottage and the Wordsworth Museum

Once home to famous poet, William Wordsworth, between 1799 and 1808, Dove Cottage is a major tourist attraction in Grasmere. Visitors can enjoy a guided tour around the house and see how Wordsworth and his family once lived. The Wordsworth Museum and Art Gallery houses a collection illustrating the life of the poet and his family through art and books. Also hosting a changing programme of exhibitions exploring various themes, this attraction is well worth a visit.

Rydal Mount and Gardens

Described by William Wordsworth as his ´best loved family home´, Rydal Mount attracts visitors from all over the region. Having moved to the house in 1813 with his wife and three children, Wordsworth adapted the building to suit his lifestyle. An extra storey was added to make a study, and some of the poets personal effects are now exhibited, including letters and manuscripts. The four acre landscaped garden, designed by Wordsworth remains virtually unchanged.

Heaton Cooper Studio

Heaten Cooper Studio is a family-run art gallery which was first opened by artist, Alfred Heaton Cooper in 1905. The Heaton Cooper family exhibit painting and artwork from four generations of the family at the studio, all of whom have been inspired by the stunning scenery of the Lake District.

Taffy Thomas's Storytelling Garden

The Northern Centre for Storytelling is based at Taffy Thomas´s Storytelling Garden. This is a charitable organisation which is dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in the art of storytelling.

The Lake District is home to some of the most stunning scenery and amazing attractions in the UK. The lakes are the ideal place to spend a family holiday or a quiet week away from the crowds, with a range of events, attractions and facilities for all the family. Cosy pubs in Coniston, boutique hotels in Windermere, themed hotels in Bowness, guest houses in Grasmere and superb bed and breakfast accommodation in Braithwaite are just some of the excellent accommodation choices in the Lake District. Take your time to explore the lakes and you will find a wealth of things to see and do.

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