In a world where looking after our environment is increasingly important, you may be considering travelling to your next holiday by public transport instead of taking the car.
Fortunately, even amongst the wild and remote areas of the Lake District National Park, many places can be reached by train, bus, and even boat! Read on for a selection of some of our self-catering cottages that are accessible by public transport.
Please note: these are brief guides to cottages you can reach with public transport. Some services will be seasonal and are subject to change, particularly in adverse weather. Please always check your route in advance of setting off. All information is correct at time of writing (March 2021).
Rivers End, Ravenglass
Sleeps 4, 0 dogs
With a balcony overlooking the sandy beaches of the reservoir, Rivers End is an excellent choice for an easily accessible coastal cottage. Its spacious open plan living area and bright bedrooms are an absolute delight, and you can enjoy spectacular sunsets on clear evenings.
How to get there: Trains run to Ravenglass from Barrow-in-Furness in the south and Carlisle in the north. The coastal route makes for a lovely journey. Rivers End is then just a 5-minute walk from the station.
Bottle Tops, Windermere
Sleeps 4, 0 dogs
Bottle Tops has an interesting history to go alongside its quirky name! It dates back to the 1800s and was once a bottling store where they bottled local spring water and ginger beer. It’s been beautifully decorated throughout while still retaining a number of character features.
How to get there: Take a train to Windermere Train Station and Bottle Tops is round the corner, less than a 5-minute walk away.
Kirkgate Cottage, Cockermouth
Sleeps 2/3, 1 dog
In a charming courtyard setting, Kirkgate Cottage is in the lovely town of Cockermouth, just outside the Lake District. It beautifully blends retro and traditional features with modern comforts and a pleasant outside seating area.
How to get there: Take a train to Penrith or Workington. The X4 and X5 busses then run directly from the stations to several locations in Cockermouth. Kirkgate is a short walk from the centre of town.
2 Low Glenridding, Glenridding
Sleeps 4, 2 dogs
2 Low Glenridding is perfectly located for the best of the Lake District. Not only is it close to Ullswater, often touted as the most beautiful of the lakes, it also sits at the start of a popular route up Helvellyn. It’s the ideal spot if you’re an environmentally conscious outdoor adventurer.
How to get there: From Penrith train station, take the 508 bus to Glenridding Bus Shelter and the cottage is literally around the corner.
Middle Cragg Cottage, Buttermere
Sleeps 2, 1 dog
Ideal for a walking or cycling holiday, Middle Cragg Cottage is in the pretty village of Buttermere. This cosy, traditional cottage looks out on spectacular scenery and is just a short hop from not one, but two lakes.
How to get there: Hop off the train at Penrith, then catch the X4/X5 bus from the station into Keswick. From there, it’s a second gorgeously scenic bus ride on the 77 or 77A through the Newlands Valley, over Honister Pass and to Buttermere’s Fish Inn. The cottage is a 5-minute walk away. Please note that the Keswick to Buttermere bus is seasonal.
38 Blencathra Street, Keswick
Sleeps 8/9, 2 dogs
This spacious group holiday cottage is spread over three floors in a gorgeous townhouse. Right in the centre of Keswick, you’ll have plenty to do here without ever missing a car! Form walks and water activities, to bars and museums, who needs your own vehicle when everything is so close?
How to get there: Take a train to Penrith and then the X4/X5 bus to Keswick. If you want an even more scenic (but longer) bus journey, get off the train at Windermere village and catch the 555 bus to Keswick. The cottage is a short walk away from Greta Bank Bus Stop.
Dower House Cottage, Low Wray
Sleeps 5, 0 dogs
Sitting right on Windermere in the grounds of Wray Castle, and with direct access to the lake, Dower House Cottage is a delightful home where you’ll be blown away by the scenery. There’s plenty to explore in the area either by foot, boat, bike or bus!
How to get there: Catch a 599 or 755 bus at Windermere Train Station to Bowness Pier. From there, travel in style on a boat (green line) over to Wray Castle and the cottage.
Take a closer look at Dower House Cottage.
Ann's Cottage, Bassenthwaite
Sleeps 4, 0 dogs
This charming whitewashed stone cottage is in the peaceful village of Bassenthwaite and close to the lake of the same name. Bright and spacious, you can really enjoy your time snuggled down in the squishy sofas or exploring the walks around the area.
How to get there: Catch the X4 from Workington or Penrith train stations and alight at The Castle Inn. It's just a few minutes' walk to the cottage. Alternatively, the 554/555 travels to Bassenthwaite from either Carlisle or Windermere, Kendal and Lancaster.
Peek inside Ann's Cottage.
The Escape, Portinscale
Sleeps 2, 2 dogs
The Escape in Portinscale is a pretty and perfect retreat from the busiest parts of the Lakes, yet is still within easy reach of public transport and local attractions! It’s a spacious getaway with slate floors, sizeable rooms and a quiet setting in the corner of the village.
How to get there: From the train station in Penrith, take a X4/X5 bus to Booths in Keswick. Here, you can either walk 20 minutes via the Cumbrian Way, or stay on the X5 bus (change if you’re on the X4) to Low Portinscale, Hillside, and walk 10 minutes to the cottage.
Yewdale Crags Apartment, Coniston
Sleeps 4, 0 dogs
If you want to look forward to a very warm welcoming after a day’s travelling, then Yewdale Crags Apartment in Coniston could be just the place to go. With friendly owners and a welcome pack that includes homemade cake, you’ll be really spoiled here!
How to get there: Take the 505 bus from Windermere Train Station straight to Coniston, and walk 5 minutes to your cottage.
Esk View, Eskdale
Sleeps 16, 3 dogs
Standing tall and proud amongst the mountainous scenery of Eskdale, Esk View is a large, remote cottage that is still fairly easy to get to on public transport. This grand house benefits from spectacular views, several en suite bedrooms, and large socialising spaces.
How to get there: Take the train to Ravenglass and then hop onto the charming Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway, which shuttles you back and forth on miniature steam trains! Travel to the end of the line, and Esk View can be seen from the station just a short walk away.
Sleeps 10/12, 2 dogs
This grand old house sits within an acre of wild gardens that include a treehouse, a pond, and multiple seating areas. Grade II listed, it’s a really spectacular home-from-home that’s absolutely perfect for group gatherings.
How to get there: Appleby is on the famous Settle to Carlisle Railway route so, not only can you reach Beechcroft without a car (it’s a 10-minute walk from the station), you’ll have a really spectacular journey there. If you get your timings right, you could even arrive by steam train!