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Filming locations in Cumbria and the Lake District holiday cottages

Filming locations in Cumbria and the Lake District

Kate W 19 April 2021

We're so proud of the beautiful landscapes all across Cumbria and the Lake District and Hollywood has often visited to make the most of our glorious location. So you can make the most of it too, we’ve put together a list of films shot in and around the wonderful Lake District.

Miss Potter

Yew Tree Cottage in Coniston, owned by Beatrix Potter

Kicking off our list is a film about one of the regions best-loved authors, Beatrix Potter. Starring Renee Zellweger as the titular character, Miss Potter follows the author/farmer/conservationist as she overcomes various obstacles, including the sexism of Victorian England, to publish her now-famous children’s books with their beautiful drawings.

As you might expect, filming locations for Miss Potter took place in various parts of the Lake District including Loughrigg and Grasmere as well as Yew Tree Farm in Coniston, which was owned by the author.

28 Days Later

28 Days Later Ennerdale

The end of the world is perhaps not what you think of when dreaming of the fells and lakes of the beautiful Lake District, but this post-apocalyptic zombie movie is partly set in the region. When the lead character Jim (Cillian Murphy) wakes up in an abandoned hospital, he ventures out to find an even emptier London, wiped out by a fast-spreading virus. The last scenes of the film are set in the Lake District and were shot around Ennerdale.

You don’t have to hide from a zombie apocalypse, but if you’d like a break from a busy life, nowhere could be more relaxing than the tranquil Ennerdale.

Snow White and the Huntsman

Snow White and the Huntsman Windermere

Wondering where was Snow White and the Huntsman filmed? Based on the original Grimm fairy tale, Snow White, this updated telling of the story was partly shot in Langdale, at locations including Cathedral Cave and Blea Tarn. Two of the film’s stars, Kristen Stewart and Charlize Theron spent some time in Windermere and locals in Ambleside were starstruck when big names including Bob Hoskins, Eddie Izzard, and Ray Winstone popped into the Wateredge Inn for a refreshment after a hard day’s filming.

Find your dream cottage in the beautiful Windermere or scenic Ambleside and begin exploring southeast Lake District to feel like you’re in your own fairy tale.

Swallows and Amazons

Swallows and Amazons Windermere

Based on the beloved children’s book, Swallows and Amazons is inspired by and filmed in the Lake District. There are two versions of this film, one released in 1974 and the other more recently in 2016. The nostalgia-inducing story follows a group of children as they sail, camp, and explore whilst on holiday. Although the names of places aren’t the same, Arthur Ransome, the book's author, confirmed that they were based on real places around the Lake District, including Coniston and Windermere. 

So where was Swallows and Amazons filmed? Parts of the original 1974 film were shot around Windermere and the 2016 version includes scenes shot around Coniston and  Derwentwater. One of Coniston’s Steam Yacht Gondolas was used for Captain Flint’s houseboat.

Start your own adventure from one of our cottages in Coniston, Keswick, or Windermere.

Withnail and I

Withnail and I was filmed in Shap

This cult film, starring Richard E. Grant and Paul McGann, is a British black comedy that follows two unemployed actors living in near-squalor in London. Deciding that it’s time for a holiday, they head on a journey to the Lake District to visit Withnail’s uncle.

Although the film’s Cumbrian scenes are mostly set in Penrith, they were not actually filmed there, instead being shot at nearby Shap and Bampton on the northeast edge of the National Park. You can also catch views of Haweswater Reservoir during the film.

For a more successful Lake District trip than the lead characters in this film, browse through our lovely, cosy cottages in Penrith

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Star Wars: The Force Awakens was filmed at Thirlmere Reservoir

A galaxy far, far away was filmed much closer to home! The planet of Takodana was partly shot in the Lake District, although you’ll be forgiven for missing it as much of the footage was edited with CGI to add additional mountains and features in the background! The most recognisable location can be seen when two X-Wing Fighters fly across Derwentwater, from Walla Crag on the southeast edge of the lake. The popular lake, which is also home to the lovely market town of Keswick, features in other parts of the film, as does Thirlmere reservoir, where you will see yet more X-Wing Fighters flying overhead!

These two bodies of water are much more peaceful in real life, so pop on your walking boots and start enjoying the tranquillity from one of our cottages in Keswick

Peter Rabbit

Peter Rabbit - Beatrix Potter World in Windermere

The newly released film, starring Beatrix Potter’s most well-known and beloved character, boasts an all-star cast including James Corden, Daisy Ridley, and Margot Robbie. So where was Peter Rabbit filmed? Peter Rabbit is synonymous with the Lake District, so it’s no surprise that parts of the film were shot in Ambleside and Windermere, very near to the popular World of Beatrix Potter attraction in Bowness-on-Windermere.

Take a look at our cottages set in the very places where Beatrix Potter set her famous stories, including Keswick (for Derwentwater), the Newlands Valley, and around Windermere and Ambleside.

Brief Encounter

Brief Encounter Langdale Valley

Brief Encounter is a classic British romance about two comfortably married people (Celia Johnson and Trevor Howard) who begin an affair with one another. Though mostly shot at Carnforth railway station in Lancashire, one poignant and passionate scene is set on Middle Fell Bridge in the Langdale Valley.

Search out your own romantic getaway in the Langdale Valley

Without a Clue

Without a Clue was filmed in Windermere

A twist on the popular Sherlock Holmes stories, Without a Clue follows Dr. Watson (Ben Kingsley), a man who creates a fictional character called Sherlock Holmes so that he can solve crimes incognito. Responding to popular demand, Watson hires an actor (Michael Caine) to play the deerstalker-clad detective.

The film uses a number of locations in the Lake District, including Windermere, Derwentwater, and Portinscale, near Keswick.

Take a look through all of our cottages in and around the Lake District with our cottage search.

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Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing, please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.

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