We all want to experience the best of the Lake District scenery, and a mountain walk is one of the top ways to do that! But perhaps you're not up for a full hike up England's highest mountain, Scafell Pike, so it's good to know that there are plenty of easy mountain walks such as Arnside Knott for you to enjoy! It's in the perfect location if you're staying in one of our self-catering cottages in the South Lakes.
About Arnside Knott
This is a teeny, tiny hill, which can be made even teenier and tinier by driving most of the way up. You really don’t need to worry about carting a big rucksack up there, but an extra layer of clothing is always a good idea. It’s also worth taking a flask and something to eat as the views at the top are superb and there are plenty of nice rocky outcrops where you can perch and enjoy a picnic. It's a wonderful place to go at any time of the day, but it's truly spectacular at sunrise and sunset. The short distance means it's perfect - and easy - to get up there and back down again without too much trouble, despite a lack of light. But you should still remember to bring your torch!
You're going to be telling all your Lake District-loving friends about Arnside Knott once you’ve been up there because it really is amazing! And, although it's not right inside the national park, it sits in the gorgeous Arnside & Silverdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty just a short drive from the Lakes. It also has incredible views of the Lake District fells and the Yorkshire Dales as well as the coast at Morecambe Bay. You won't know where to look first!
Nature lovers will also love this location, too: the knott is an important habitat for rare wildflowers and wildlife such as butterflies, and is covered with grassland and woods. There's plenty to keep your interest for the whole duration of your walk!
The Walk and the Summit
Conveniently, you can drive most of the way to the top of this little hill, and this is definitely the easiest option. However, I should warn you that the drive up is along a small single track road, so you'll need to practice your reversing and 'thank you for waiting's' before you set off!
From the car park you can simply follow the very short - but steep - track up to the viewpoint, where you’ll find one of those illustrated panoramas telling you the names of all the amazing fells in the distance. From this diminutive fell top you can see all the way up to Skiddaw in the very north of Cumbria – so wave if you have any friends taking on that hike at the same time!
Because you’ve driven most of the way up, you can spend more time exploring the summit, and there are several paths criss-crossing the woods for you to explore. Take a wander to the trig point so you can say that you’ve reached the true summit, and look out for the interestingly ‘h’ shaped tree along the way – you’ll know it when you see it.
If you take a tootle around the back you can peer down onto Arnside Tower and the very pretty village of Silverdale away in the distance (it’s over the border in Lancashire, but still worth a visit!). Be careful if you wander too close to Hagg Wood, though – folklore has it that it was once home to giant hairy flying worms!
Once you’re done exploring, head back to the prom where there are plenty of pubs and cafes where you can rest your weary bones. It’s also worth checking the tide times and levels as Arnside is home to one of the few tidal bores in the country, and it’s pretty impressive to see. You’ll need a tide height of over 9 metres, and the patio in front of The Albion is a great place to sit and watch it from. It usually happens an hour or so before high tide so get a pie and a pint and have your camera ready for the show!
If you're ready to explore Arnside Knott at the local area, take a look at our holiday cottages in the South East Lake District.