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Guide to the Best Walks Around Grasmere

“The Best Walks Around Grasmere”

Situated in the heart of beautiful Lake District, Grasmere is full of beautiful scenery and typical Cumbrian charm. It’s a very popular spot for those who love getting out and enjoying nature and is an ideal location for walkers of all abilities to pull on their boots and take on some of the most beautiful trails in the Lakes.

Whether you’re a complete novice and just want to take it nice and slow on an easy route, or a walking enthusiast looking to follow in Wainwright’s footsteps, there are plenty of walks to head out on, both in and around the Grasmere area.

walking boots with lake in background

Helm Crag

If you’re an avid walker, you’ve probably already heard of Helm Crag. Also known as the ‘Lion and the Lamb’, this fell is one of the most popular in the Lakes, and is definitely one to consider tackling if you are in the area.

The ascent up to the summit can seem like a challenge, but it’s actually one of the best walks to introduce yourself to walking and hiking in the Lakes. Like the majority of the walks in the Lake District, you can be sure that all your effort will be rewarded at the top with unbeatable views of the area and beyond.

Although the route can seem quite steep, it is well laid out, with paths guiding you towards the summit. Once you reach the summit, the terrain changes to loose rocks, so wearing adequate footwear and watching your step is a must.

If you’re wondering why this fell is known as the ‘Lion and the Lamb’, you only have to look at the rocks at the summit - they appear to form the shape of a large lion and a lamb laying together.

At around 6km (or 3.5 miles) in length, Helm Crag is definitely walk-able in a few hours, making it a great walk for those who don’t want to spend their whole day walking - but you can easily spend quite a bit of time taking in the scenery if you want to make a day of it.

Alcock Tarn

Take a relaxing, circular walk from Grasmere and up to Alcock Tarn with this route by the Natural Trust. With beautiful scenery, an easy to follow route, and the perfect picnic spot at Alcock Tarn, it’s a great walk to head out on as a family group.

The ascent is very gentle, with well-laid paths guiding you through the wooded area of Brackenfell and up Grey Crag to Alcock Tarn. Once here, you will be presented with an incredible view of Windermere if you look to the south,  an impressive view of Grasmere below, and the dominating silhouette of Helm Crag to the north west. It’s the perfect place to sit back and enjoy a picnic on the grass, as well as have a paddle, so try and head up on a nice day to take full advantage of the summit.

To head back down, head to the right of the tarn and start the slightly steep descent down through a woodland area before looping back round into Grasmere.

The route is around 5km (3 miles) in length, but can be made into a whole day adventure. Just be careful on wetter days, as the area around the tarn may become a bit boggy if it has rained.

Silver How

Another short walk which is accessible from Grasmere is the hill of Silver How, which separates Grasmere from the Langdale Valley. 

It’s the perfect route for absolute beginners and families, with an easy, well-laid out path which lead to the top of Silver How and the beautiful views that await you. 

On the way, you will pass Allan Bank, which was once the home of William Wordsworth. It is now under the care of the National Trust and is well worth a look. The two-storey villa stands out against the natural backdrop and draws your attention, that’s for sure!

Once you reach the top of Silver How by following the path, you will be rewarded with views of the Grasmere Valley and the Langdale Pikes, as well as Helm Crag, Heron Pike, Steel Fell and Fairfield, too. 

The route is around 4.5km (2.8 miles), so can easily be completed in around two hours.

Easedale Tarn

For a longer walk which is still perfect for all the family, the route up to Easedale Tarn is one of the easiest in the area, but doesn’t compromise on the views just because it’s an easier walk.

Taking you through farmland and woodland, past waterfalls and over stone bridges, this walk really gives you a tour of the Grasmere area, and leads you to one of the most tranquil places - Easedale Tarn.

The tarn is a very popular place for outdoor swimmers, so don’t be surprised if you see a few people in the tarn itself. However, the bottom of the tarn drops quite drastically, so it is important to fully supervise your children around it to ensure that they don’t drop down.

The fells surrounding the tarn make the area feel secluded, and many people enjoy taking picnics up to the tarn to make a longer day out of the trip.

There are two different ways to descend from the tarn - the way you came up and a longer descent which takes you over some stepping stones across a beck. This way isn’t advised if you have children, and extra care needs to be taken by walkers following rain in the area. The route will take you along Far Easedale Gill and returns you to Grasmere.

At around 6 km (3.5 miles) long, it can easily take a couple of hours to complete the route, especially when factoring in if you have children with you or if the weather hasn’t been in your favour.

Loughrigg Fell

Even though it’s one of the smallest fells named in Wainwright’s guides, it still draws people to it to tick it off their lists. Even though it’s size may not be as impressive as some of the other fells mentioned in his guide, it’s still worthy of a mention, as the route is surrounded by incredible views that really shouldn’t be missed.

Heading up Loughrigg Fell from Grasmere is easily done, and choosing this route which takes you along Red Bank Road will guide you through ancient woodland before you head out onto the fell’s side for a short, steep ascent.

The summit grants walkers a full 360-degree view of the surrounding area, including views of Windermere, the Coniston Fells, the Langdales, Elterwater and Helm Crag. It’s a great place to choose your next walk destination as you’re surrounded by fells, lakes and tarns!

Measuring about 8km (5 miles) it’s the longest walk in our guide, but it’s also one to tick off your Wainwright walks list.

lady walking dog on lake district fell

With plenty of walks to choose from in the Grasmere area, it’s the best place to encourage your love of walking, as well as satisfy it!

When your weary legs, lead you back into the town, our lake view lounge and restaurant are ready to welcome you back and refuel you for your next adventure!

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