Things to do nearby Caton Lane House
There's certainly plenty to see and do during your stay at Caton Lane House. Visit the nearby historic Holker Hall and Gardens, a beautiful estate set in stunning surroundings, or head to the South Cumbrian coast for wide open vistas and bracing walks by the sea. A 10 minute drive will take you to the neighbouring village of Haverthwaite, where the trains take you through scenic countryside from Haverthwaite Station to Lakeside Station, and from there you can continue your journey aboard a Windermere Steamer and cruise up to Bowness or Ambleside.
Cark-in-Cartmel – often known as just Cark – is an attractive village on the coastal peninsulas of Cumbria. Once a hub of industrial cotton milling activity thanks to its position on the river, it is now a quiet retreat that sits in between the Lake District and the sea.
When the railway was built in the mid-19th century, the village became a popular tourist destination, with a number of inns popping up to cater for new visitors. A couple of these still exist today and serve good food and local ales. Check out The Engine Inn for relaxed food to order or The Rose & Crown for a warm welcome. Alternatively, if you’re planning meals in, a handy local Londis store offers all the basics for your stay, or Flounders in Flookburgh, just 3 minutes drive away, will sort you out with a traditional chippy tea.
Just outside Cark-in-Cartmel is the beautiful stately home of Holker Hall with its stunning gardens. The house itself has lots of gorgeous rooms to explore, and you can discover how the previous owners have made adjustments and improvements to their home. Outside are the real showstoppers, though, with 23 acres of well-kept formal gardens alongside informal meadows. The hall also hosts numerous events over the year including a spring fair, winter markets, a chilli fest, and a summer theatre weekend. If you're a foodie fan, pop into A Day's Walk's artisan food hall, which has an amazing selection of local produce.
Nature lovers amongst you must take a trip to Roudsea Wood and Mosses National Nature Reserve. The ancient Yew trees give a real sense of grandeur and there are several habitats in the reserve including coastal saltmarsh, limestone woodland and lowland raised mire. It’s also home to wildlife including badgers, and ospreys can sometimes be seen flying overhead. A walk around the area will give you tantalising glimpses of the bay too!
As you would expect in the beautiful countryside of Cumbria, there are plenty of walks to be had around Cark. Gentle walks will take you along the coast, through the ancient village of Flookburgh, or into the rolling hills. A short drive will also see you in the South Lakes, with all the hiking opportunities that opens up!
A couple of miles north of Cark is Cartmel, possibly most famous for its amazing sticky toffee pudding! If you have a sweet tooth, then pick up a warm pud from Cartmel Village Shop and enjoy this taste sensation! You can spend the rest of your day very pleasantly here, with a number of independent shops and plenty of eateries, including not one but TWO Michelin restaurants! There’s also a local craft brewery with its own tasting room bar.
No visit to Cartmel is complete without a stop off at the magnificent Cartmel Priory. Built in the 1200s, this stunning building has survived Robert the Bruce, subsidence, Henry VIII’s dissolution of the monasteries, famine, Cromwell and neglect. Phew! With all that history, it’s no surprise that there are many stories to tell! It also hosts a number of unique architectural features such as the diagonal square belfry tower. Those who are after a more spiritual visit are also very welcome, as the priory is still active, hosting regular services and events.
Cartmel also boasts many other things to do that are sure to keep you busy for a day or two! The popular racecourse hosts 9 annual events; social race gatherings that also include a funfair! For your own riding experience (confident riders only), head to Black Horses Ltd for a Friesian horse-riding experience across the sands of Morecambe Bay or local rolling countryside. Or do something a little different with an exciting Segway tour!
The handy train station in Cark allows you to leave the car behind and still get out to explore everything this wonderful area has to offer. The gorgeous route east will take you along the edge of Morecambe Bay and through the Arnside & Silverdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Why not hop on the train here and enjoy the many walking and cycling routes, spotting fascinating flora and fauna, or learning some history of the area at Heron Corn Mill?
Grange-over-Sands became a popular seaside destination to the Victorians, with the crisp air recommended by doctors as a cure for all sorts of ailments! Nowadays you can still see the evidence of its Victorian popularity, with a Grade II Listed Lido that the community is currently working to restore, and a beautiful cast-iron bandstand. The promenade is also well worth a walk, with its lovely views over the bay.
Heading in to the South Lakes, Cark is well placed for Windermere. At the southern tip of England’s longest lake is Backbarrow with its interesting motor museum; the National Trust’s Fell Foot Park; and Lakes Aquarium. You can also hop on a boat and cruise Windermere, either doing a full lap of the water or stopping off at numerous attractions, towns and villages on the way. Why not admire the Victorian folly of Wray Castle, or sail the whole length of the lake to reach Ambleside?
The Lakeside and Haverthwaite Steam Railway is also well worth a ride: the vintage trains take you on a scenic trip along the river and lake. Make a journey part of your day (or days!) around Windermere, with one of many combined tickets that will give you access to attractions such as the Lakeland Motor Museum, Brockhole, Windermere Lake Cruises, Holker Hall, and the World of Beatrix Potter!
To the west of Cark, across the estuary of the River Leven, is the bustling market town of Ulverston. Known as the Party Capital of Furness, its year-round programme of events includes the Dickensian Festival, International Music Festival and Beer Festival. It’s also full of interesting history, with the 100-ft Hoad Monument sitting high above the town, the Laurel & Hardy Museum (Stan Laurel was born here in 1890) and the wonderful Buddhist temple - Conishead Priory - which is regularly open to the public.