If you're coming to the Lake District and to Keswick in particular, you're going to be spoiled for choice when it comes to outdoor recreation. No one comes to this part of the UK just to sit on the sofa, so get ready to see some spectacular sights and pursue some incredible endeavours.
From gentle lake cruises to thrilling water sports and bracing mountain climbs, we've found some of the best outdoor activities in Keswick to try on your next break in the Lakes.
Explore Derwentwater from Keswick
One of Keswick’s biggest draws is its fabulous position on Derwentwater. The Keswick Launch regularly cruises the lake, allowing you to either do a full lap or stop off at the various jetties and explore further afield. Alternatively, boat hire is available, with the option to take out kayaks, canoes, rowing boats and paddleboards.
If you like to dive right in, you’ll be glad to know that the lake is a popular wild swimming location. Or you may just prefer to stay on solid ground with a walk around the shores or have a relaxing picnic on one of the pebble beaches.
Castlerigg Stone Circle
Standing above the town is the mysterious Castlerigg Stone Circle. This grandparent of stone circles is one of the oldest in Britain, built in 3,000 BCE. It also has the best views with a dramatic 360-degree backdrop of mountains including Helvellyn and Blencathra. Whether you come for the panorama or the mystique, Castlerigg is a must-see for anyone visiting Keswick. It’s endlessly fascinating and breathtakingly beautiful.
Outdoor adventure activities
If you’re after a bit of adventure, then this is the place to go! Keswick’s lake and the surrounding rivers and crags offer almost every outdoor activity under the sun. Ghyll scrambling and canyoning see you slipping and sliding down rivers and gorges; you can go climbing or bouldering on nearby crags or the famous Bowder Stone; or try something a bit different with tubing on the river. There are plenty of outdoor adventure providers near Keswick too.
Parks in Keswick
There are several lovely parks in Keswick, each with its own activities and special character. Hope Park boasts crazy golf, formal gardens, a putting green and a cafe, while Crow Park is a wide grassy space that slopes gently down to the lakeshore. Across town are Upper Fitz Park and Lower Fitz Park, with an arboretum, tennis courts, play area and BMX tracks.
Golf in Keswick
Keswick Golf Club is 4.5 miles outside of the town. Surrounded by a panorama of Lake District fells, it’s a truly spectacular spot for a few rounds. Visitors are welcome 7 days a week to enjoy the 18 holes, refreshments in the bar and restaurant, and a browse around the on-site shop.
This impressive forest is just a short drive from Keswick. The shady woodland covers the side of a mountain and reaches right down to Bassenthwaite Lake, making it England’s only true mountain forest. You’ll find walking trails and famous mountain bike routes, as well as alpaca walks, a gift shop, a popular café, and information about the Bassenthwaite ospreys. Keep a close eye out for red squirrels too: Whinlatter is one of the best places to see them!
To the south of Derwentwater, the landscape around Keswick stretches towards the imposing ‘Jaws of Borrowdale’. Riverside strolls, mountain passes, and hermit caves await, as well as pretty hamlets and craggy scenery. You can take a boat from Keswick, drive, catch the bus, or walk into the valley. There are also restaurants and cafés to enjoy during your day out.
High on Honister Pass, between Borrowdale and Buttermere, is Honister Slate Mine. This is a natural playground on the mountain, and you can really test your nerve by signing up for the Via Ferrata. The dramatic scramble scales Fleetwith Pike via cabled bridges, cargo next and ladders.
Self-catering cottages in Keswick
After taking on one or more of these exciting outdoor activities in Keswick, you will no doubt need a place to relax and unwind. Luckily, we have an excellent collection of Keswick self-catering cottages, just click the button below to have a browse.
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.