Things to do nearby Orchard Barn
A gem of peace and tranquillity only a stone's throw from the bustling town of Keswick, Orchard Barn is an ideal place to sit and relax, yet if adventure is what you're after, you've come to the right place; Newlands Adventure Centre organises activity days to suit all abilities, and nearby Whinlatter Forest is excellent for all the family. With Bassenthwaite and Derwentwater equidistant from the property, you're spoilt for choice for paddling, picnics and walks.
Snuggled at the base of Skiddaw, Applethwaite is ideally situated for exploring the beautiful surroundings of the northwest Lake District. Whether it be the mountainous walks up the Coledale Fells, gentle strolls around Bassenthwaite or Derwent Water, or paddling and picnicking in the Newlands Valley, all are easily reached from this popular hamlet.
Rising above the nearby village of Bassenthwaite is the mountainous Whinlatter Forest with numerous mountain bike trails, walking trails, a Go Ape! high rope course, and even Segway tours! The shop and café in the visitor centre are well-worth visiting, as is the information display and webcam of the Osprey nesting site that overlooks Bassenthwaite Lake.
Why not indulge yourself with a spot of pampering while on your Lake District break? Visit Oxley’s Spa in Applethwaite, which has a restaurant, bar and spa facilities. At the other end of Bassenthwaite Lake lies Armathwaite Hall, which also has a highly acclaimed spa. So much choice, where to head first?
If you’re instead looking for action and adventure, a gentle lakeside stroll, or just a bit of retail therapy, the ever-popular market town of Keswick is two-miles away and is a hub of activity. For those on the trail of adventure, why not rent a bike from Keswick Mountain Bikes, scramble up the climbing wall or have take to the water on a range of boats including Dragon, canoe, sailing and Viking? As the Adventure Capital of the Lake District, Keswick offers just about every outdoor activity you could hope for.
A plethora of outdoor shops are located in the town centre and there is plenty of other options including crazy golf, radio controlled boating, the King Kong climbing wall, the Puzzling Place, museums, and an Art-Deco cinema. Evenings is Keswick can be filled at any number of wonderful restaurants; Thai, Mexican, Spanish and Italian cuisine are all on offer, as well as three traditional fish and chip shops. Those looking for a more cultural experience will be enthralled by the drama on offer at the Theatre by the Lake – guests of Sally’s Cottages even receive a discount (details in your booking confirmation email)! Just a short walk beyond the theatre is the beautiful Friars Crag; it's well worth the five-minute walk!
The Caldbeck Rambler is a seasonal (Easter - October) circular bus route from nearby Keswick to Caldbeck. Destinations along the route include the Lake District Wildlife Park (it has a café and bird of prey displays), Dodd Wood (a forested mountain with Osprey viewing points), Mirehouse (an historic house and gardens with lakeside walks) and Castlerigg Stone Circle (English Heritage say this “is perhaps the most atmospheric and dramatically sited of all British stone circles, with panoramic views and the mountains of Helvellyn and High Seat as a backdrop”). An additional service runs at weekends and during school holidays, and includes a bus to Carlisle.
From Keswick, take a trip down the Borrowdale Valley. This is a beautiful spot with many good pubs and woodland walks. Here you will find the starting point for climbing up Scafell Pike – England’s highest mountain. There are also a wealth of crystal-clear streams in which to dip your weary feet after long Lake District walks.
If you continue down the Borrowdale Valley you will get to Honister Pass and Honister Mine. Try out one of their mine tours or, if you’re feeling brave, experience their Via Ferrata and Infinity Bridge! If you carry on over Honister you will get to Crummock Water, Buttermere and Loweswater beyond, all of which are beautiful small lakes with fabulous walks. The Kirkstile Inn at Loweswater is one of our favourites
The market town of Cockermouth is a 20-minute drive from Applethwaite and has a fantastic array of independent shops, restaurants, cafés and other attractions, such as the Jennings Brewery (offering tours and tastings) and Wordsworth House, the childhood home of the poet William Wordsworth.