Exploring Keswick with Kids: A family friendly adventure

Considering heading to the Lake District with children?

Then why not try Keswick? Located in the heart of the Lake District National Park amidst stunning landscapes, rolling hills and serene lakes. Keswick is rapidly gaining popularity as a hotspot destination, and for good reason. Join us on our journey to Keswick with our three daughters aged 2, 9 and 10. We also had the pleasure of being accompanied by my parents, in their late 60s and early 70s; we all comfortably stayed at our holiday cottage ‘Lakeland View’.

Despite being somewhat apprehensive about our trip to Keswick with our 2-year-old, this blog highlights some of the best family-friendly activities you can enjoy in Keswick.

1. Lakeside Adventures

Take a short stroll from Keswick High Street to Derwentwater, where you can hire paddleboats, canoes, and even hop on the Keswick Launch and cruise the breathtaking lake, a great experience for kids and adults. The Ladore Falls is an ideal stop to check out the waterfall. If you fancy a refreshing pause, the Ladore Hotel offers an idyllic place for a cocktail or lunch. We got lucky and were there on a glorious sunny day and basked in the sun on the hotel terrace surrounded by magnificent views before heading back to Keswick town centre on the Launch (if you miss the last Launch, you can catch a bus back to the town centre from directly opposite the hotel – It is in fact the open top bus route!)

2. Family-Friendly Hikes

Latrigg Summit
We embarked on the Latrigg Summit hike, and the views were nothing short of spectacular. Make sure you have enough memory on your camera for the photo opportunities!
For those looking for a little short cut, a small car park halfway up is available, perfect for the grandparents and our little one. The circular path from the car park to the summit and back down is completely pathed, making it a toddler-friendly stroll.

The renowned Skiddaw hike can also be tackled from the same car park, but it requires a bit more time and effort. It’s firmly on our list for our next Keswick Adventure. Expect this one to take between 2-4hrs from the car park but the views are incredible!

Friars Crag /Hope Park
Don’t miss the easy and charming walk from Hope Park to the idyllic lookout point at Friars Crag. With stunning views of Derwentwater, and a beautiful mountain backdrop. Everyone managed this walk with ease and buggy friendly. A well-deserved ice-cream from Hope Park Café can provide that extra boost for the kids. Speaking of Hope Park, it’s a wonderful spot for a picnic, walk or relax on a bench with a good book. Our children loved the boat race game.

Bike Trail – Fitz Park (Buggy / wheelchair friendly)
Another family-friendly stroll or cycle is the bike trail starting at Fitz Park, perfect for a leisurely walk. If you’re a Park Run enthusiast, you’ll be delighted to know that the Keswick Park Run takes place on this route. The Meeting Point is on Station Road, the old Keswick train station platform. While we were there, my husband, my eldest daughter and I braved the wet morning for the Park Run, followed by an invigorating dip in the hot tub.

River Greta
We discovered the River Greta Park and playground towards the end of our stay, a great place for a post dinner walk. Unfortunately, we didn’t get the chance to take the kids to the playground or have a stroll along the river towards Fitz Park, which is a shame as it situated so close to our holiday let property Lakeland View.

Catbells is next on our list to explore, renowned for offering stunning views yet the hike is not too challenging. It’s also one of Wainwrights favourite walks.

3. Open Top Bus ride (Unforgettable Moments)

Grab yourself a bus timetable from the Visitors Information centre (just inside the clock tower in Keswick high street). Keswick Bus station is just outside Booths Supermarket.

One of our most memorable moments; was the Open Top bus ride but brace yourselves it’s not like there’s much traffic so the driver picks up an exhilarating speed along big open roads with jaw dropping views – this was a big hit for everyone! The big kids said it was like a ride at Chessington! The little one shouted ‘Hold Tight Nana! Land Ahoy’ as the driver expertly navigated the route.
We took the circular route and stopped at ‘The Grange’, where we walked up to ‘The Grange Tea Rooms’ for delightful cream tea with a view. A great adventure and worth the single fare of £2, the local borough has an incentive to get people out of cars and using the buses, hence the £2 fare.

Other Bus routes / areas to explore
The bus can take you to Windermere, passing through Grasmere and Ambleside if you want to check out Lake Windermere. We also explored Buttermere, which we learned was a filming location for Tom Cruise’s recent film Mission Impossible-Dead Reckoning. Although the weather wasn’t perfect, we discovered a stunning waterfall during a short walk. Apparently, a bit further a long there is a natural infinity pool, which we didn’t quite reach this time but will try and navigate next time.

Unexplored Activities on our List
While we packed in a lot on our first adventure to Keswick, we have several activities left on our list, including a visit to the Lake District Wildlife Park, exploring the mystical Castlerigg Stone Circle, and experiencing the thrilling segway rides and treetop adventures at Whinlatter Forest. Beatrix Potter’s world of Peter Rabbit in the village of Sewray, close to Keswick is also on our radar, along with a visit to the Keswick Theatre by The Lake and the intriguing Pencil Museum.

In conclusion, our Keswick adventure exceeded our expectations, even with our 2 year-old in tow. There is an abundance of activities for everyone, from toddlers to grandparents. We certainly recommend Keswick for children of all ages (and adults too!). We can’t wait to return to explore more.

Our Holiday Cottage in Keswick
If you are searching for a convenient place to stay in the heart of Keswick, be sure to check out our holiday cottage ‘Lakeland View’, that sleeps up to 12.