NORTHERN GRANDEUR tour
Departs at a time to suit you and lasts 6 / 8 hours
1 to 4 passengers - £30.00 per hour
5 to 8 passengers - £40.00 per hour
Thirlmere, Keswick, Surprise View and Ashness Bridge, Castlerigg stone circle, Ullswater, Aira Force and Kirkstone Pass.
The Northern Grandeur Tour is a fully guided minibus tour around the high mountain scenery of the north and north east Lake District, with outstanding mountain ranges, dramatic lakes and waterfalls. The tour takes in the highest Lake District pass, Kirkstone Pass, to a height of 1,489 feet above sea level.
The tour departs from the spectacular Lakeland village of Grasmere, once home to the poet William Wordsworth, where his famous dwelling Dove Cottage is a popular attraction along with St Oswald’s Church and not forgetting Sarah Nelson’s world famous Grasmere Gingerbread shop – a must visit for any visitor.
We then travel over the pass of Dunmail Raise, which before the year 1361 was the northern boundary of the Roman Empire and formed the Scottish border. We take in the spectacular scenery along the shores of Thirlmere Reservoir, formerly two smaller lakes known as Leathes Water and Whythburn Water and now a major water supply for the Manchester area. We cross the dam for an unparalleled view of the lake and the peak of Helvellyn which stands at a height of 950 metres, making it the third highest peak in England.
From here we take the road through the largest of the Lake District towns, Keswick, and continue into the Borrowdale Valley and along the shores of Derwentwater. We stop for photos at Surprise View which offers a truly unique vantage point from which to view Derwentwater and Bassenthwaite. You will see Ashness Bridge which is perhaps the most photographed packhorse bridge in the Lake District due to its location and stunning views.
A short drive follows to Castlerigg Stone Circle, stopping to see the 4,500 year-old monument. This magnificent viewpoint offers 360 degree observation of truly breath-taking mountain scenery, and standing in the middle of the stone circle is a wonderful experience!
We then travel to Aira Force – a waterfall with a deep ravine, man-made bridges above and below the falls, which offer a unique perspective for photos.
We then travel along the shores of the second largest lake, Ullswater. We stop near Glencoyne Bay, the inspiration for Wordsworth’s famous poem ‘I wandered lonely as a cloud’. The poem made Wordsworth a household name and inspired the working classes to read and write, so they too could experience freedom of expression.
Our next stop is the village of Glenridding for a comfort stop, before driving to a dizzy height of 1,489 feet above sea level on the Kirkstone Pass.
This offers a chance to view the remarkable landscape, as we descend through the Troutbeck valley, close to original Roman roads and stop for a view of Troutbeck Park Farm, one of Beatrix Potter’s 14 farms, which was occupied by the writer before her marriage to the solicitor William Heelis in 1912.
We drop back into Windermere at approximately 5pm to finish the tour.