Half term in the Lake District // A week in pictures

Last week we spent four nights in the Lake District in a little cottage not far from Penrith. We only booked it about a month ago when I decided we needed a holiday having not been away since we went to Bluestone in March.

I’m sure none of you really want to read a blow by blow account of our week away but we took so many pictures that it seems a shame not to share some of them. So here it is, our week in pictures…

On the way up to Penrith we met my in-laws at Low Sizergh Barn. We’ve been here a few times before. The food in the cafe is delicious and there’s also a great farm shop. The boys always like sitting on the tractor that is in the car park too.

Toby driving a tractor

There is also a trail around the farm which we’ve never walked before – we only had time to do a little bit of it this time.

Gabe following Toby round the farm trail at Low Sizergh Barn

It was a good chance for the boys to stretch their legs anyway, and they enjoyed having a walk with Nana and Grandad Paul.

Toby and Gabe with Nana and Grandad Paul at Sizergh

After lunch and our walk we got back in the car and headed up to Penrith. We were staying in a lovely two bedroom cottage that I booked through Sally’s Cottages. I’ve booked through them before and we’ve always had great holidays, and they always seem to be really reasonably priced too.

Bluebell Cottage, Yanwarth near Penrith

I didn’t actually take any pictures of the inside of the cottage but it was lovely. There was plenty of room for all of us, apart from the low doorways that Barry kept banging his head on! The boys slept in a twin room – we pushed the beds together against the wall and put our bed guard on the other side so there was less chance of anyone falling out. It was Gabe’s first time sleeping in a bed rather than a cot and the first two nights weren’t brilliant, but he slept through the second two nights so I think we’ll call that a win!

Gabe chasing bubbles in the garden of Bluebell Cottage

There was a great garden at the cottage, and one morning we just played outside chasing bubbles and each other.

Toby practising his jumping in the garden of Bluebell Cottage

Toby also had lots of fun practising his jumping off a big rock. We were pretty lucky with the weather really. It was mostly grey, and  a bit drizzly a few days, but considering it was November in the Lake District it could have been a whole lot worse!

There were some leaflets in the cottage about things to do in the local area and by chance we found one for a short walk around Cliburn Moss – a nature reserve about 15 minutes away from the cottage. The leaflet was for one of a series of Tale Trails – it had a map on one side and a story all about the ‘Grumbletrog‘ on the other.

Toby and Gabe looking at the map at Cliburn Moss near Penrith

It was a really lovely walk through the woods with plenty for Toby and Gabe to see along the way. There were woodpecker holes in the trees…Toby looking at woodpecker holes in a fallen tree

There were pine cones aplenty…

Gabe found a pine cone (and learnt a new word)

We didn’t find the Grumbletrog but we did find his favourite bathing pool…

The Grumbletrog's favourite bathing pool - peat bog at Cliburn Moss

And the boys found his house to have a snack in…

Toby and Gabe having a snack in the Grumbletrog's house

Toby was in his element in the woods, and loved looking up at the very tall trees…

Toby looking to see how tall the trees are at Cliburn Moss

We may not have found the Grumbletrog but we did have a lovely walk, and I think we all enjoyed our pub tea that night all the more.

We didn't find the Grumbletrog but we had a lovely walk

The next day we headed to Whinlatter Forest to follow the Gruffalo Spotter’s Trail (we knew we would have more luck actually finding what we were looking for this time!) We did the Gruffalo trail at Grizedale Forest back at Easter so we knew what to expect and I already had the app downloaded.

Looking at the Gruffalo Spotter's app with Toby and Gabe

The Whinlatter trail also had wooden carvings of all the characters from the Gruffalo story too, as well as some great views of the fells from the trail…

The view from Whinlatter Forest

Gabe liked the mouse, the fox, and the owl but wasn’t so keen on the snake, and really didn’t like the Gruffalo himself!

Gabe stroking Fox on the Gruffalo trail

Owl on the Gruffalo Spotter's trail at Whinlatter

Toby loved the Gruffalo though – especially the ‘purple prickles all over his back’…

Toby and the Gruffalo

We saved some money while we were away by taking packed lunches out with us, and only ate out one evening. It did mean though that we didn’t feel bad about treating ourselves to cake after our exertions on the Gruffalo trail.

We decided to go to the Llama Karma Kafe – it’s just east of Penrith on the A66, you’ve probably driven past it if you’ve ever been to Center Parcs at Whinfell. We had some lovely cake and got to see a couple of the llamas…

Inca the Llama at the Llama Karma Kafe Penrith

There were also a couple of guinea pigs, two marmosets and two giant rabbits, which I think Toby and Gabe enjoyed looking at more than the llamas!

Toby and Gabe looking at the rabbits at the Llama Karma Kafe

On Friday we packed everything and the kids back in the car and headed for home. On the way though we went Ambleside, one of my favourite places in the Lake District. We went for our traditional lunch at The Apple Pie (it’s owned by a man who used to be one of my dad’s Venture Scouts and we’ve been going there for as long as I can remember), bought Toby some walking trainers (size 12!) and took the ubiquitous picture at The Bridge House.

oby and Gabe outside The Bridge House in Ambleside

We had such a lovely holiday – I’m sure that most parents will agree that holidays with children are not always relaxing but this one actually was! The boys were really well behaved for the most part, and even managed to get along with each other for most of the time too. We really like this area of the Lake District, and I’m sure we’ll be back again for another holiday – Barry is desperate to get Toby climbing some hills soon so I bet it won’t be long before we’re back.


8 thoughts on “Half term in the Lake District // A week in pictures

  1. I love the Lake District, and well done you for achieving what must be the holy grail of a relaxing holiday with children! I love getting outside for a walk and both the grumbletrog trail and the gruffalo one sound like they had plenty to keep the little legs moving forward. I think they’ve put the sculptures up at our nearest gruffalo trail now – this has reminded me I wanted to visit! Thanks for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove

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