I’ve fairly recently been on a week long holiday, but that’s not what I’m writing about just now because we also went on a short break to the Lake District back in September, which I delayed writing about for a while because I’d just done the posts about Cayton Bay and Blackpool, and wanted to keep a little bit of variation going. Yes, we do go on quite a few holidays, but none of these have been expensive ones. And this one was just three days.
So anyway. The first thing we did, before we actually got to Grasmere, where we were staying, was take a walk up to Rydal Cave on Loughrigg Fell. It’s a man made cave; it was once a quarry. Now, though, it’s just a cavern with a lot of water in it. As I’m looking up information to share here now, I’ve found several sites mentioning a fence around the cave and a sign warning of falling rocks. But all those sites are a few years old, and as I saw no such precautions myself, I assume it’s deemed safe again. Looking up pictures, the fence was right in front of the cave, and it’s not now. Although, looking at my own photos, they appear to have left a fence post, which I’m sure I did notice at the time, but wouldn’t have thought much of. You see random fenceposts and such everywhere. But I presume it’s safe now.
Well, everyone was going inside without a care in the world, so I hope it’s safe, anyway.
There’s more than one cave around there. We saw at least one other one. Didn’t go inside; it didn’t look totally inaccesible but you’d have to do a bit of climbing to get to it. That’s just from observation, I don’t actually know if it’s possible to get inside. Nobody in my family tried to get there, and I didn’t see anyone else going for it.
It was not a long walk, but it was a very pretty one. It was a nice day, and I don’t think I’m giving much of an insight when I say that the Lake District is completely gorgeous. There’s views over Rydal Water as you go along, and a lake’s always a good thing to be able to look out over. And it was all very green. And yes, I know that doesn’t sound a very intelligent thing to say, and it’s not like I’m not used to that level of green, but there really is no other way to desrcibe it. Which is a wonderful thing for a writer to say.
But yes, it’s all very pretty, and we got the right day for it.
After that we went into Ambleside for a little while. Bridge House was open today. It’s this tiny little house built over the beck. It used to be lived in – they claim there was a family of eight living there at one point – and has been all sorts of other stuff over the years. Now the National Trust have it, and it’s free to look inside. It’s really nowhere near as interesting inside – how could it be, it’s two tiny rooms? I don’t think I expected very much of the inside, but it was very much worth a look, for sheer novelty if nothing more.
We were staying in Grasmere. I love Grasmere. I love little villages because they’ve all got their own unique look, and this one is certainly in a beautiful area. But I also like being places that have a decent number of random little shops to go poking round, and those aren’t two things that would automatically go together. But you do get some villages that manage to combine them, and this was one of them, so I was happy.
One of the days we walked up to Easedale Tarn, with, of course, more gorgeous views and a ton of greenness. Again, not really a long walk, but it was a climb, the tarn is properly up in the hills. So lots of views all along and a lovely little lake to wander around. And, for the bonus, a waterfall partway up. That’s the thing about little villages, you don’t necessarily have to go very far to get to the middle of nowhere, and get all the gorgeous country views. It’s like that in my area, but I think the Lake District takes it to another level.
Before going home we stopped by the Aquarium of the Lakes. I have a lot of affection for that place. When I was younger we used to stay in Bowness a lot. The aquarium is not in or near Bowness, but they’re both on the shore of Windermere, and there’s three ferries that operate on the lake – The Tern, The Teal and The Swan. So we used to get the ferry across to the aquarium quite a bit. Actually, I think this was the first time we have ever driven there; even last time we went, when we weren’t actually staying anywhere on the lake, we still parked in Bowness and got the boat across. It felt a bit weird not doing that.
It’s a nice little aquarium. Probably one of the star attractions would be the otters. We watched the feeding. Mostly because we happened to get there just before they were doing the otter feeding, and they’re one of the first things you get to. When we first got to where the otter tank is one of them was just stood there staring out with one of the most intense looks I’ve ever seen on animal. That was the direction the trainer came rom so I guess she knew it was time.
They’ve got ducks there too. They float around on top of the tank where the tunnel goes through. They can get outside, but they all seemed happy enough to stay on the tank. I probably would, if I was a duck, I’d say they’ve got a pretty good deal going on. You could see them from inside the tunnel, just bobbing about up above, which was fun. If you’re there at the right time you can apparently see them diving, but we weren’t there at the right time.
They’ve got a few animals that don’t strictly fit the whole ‘aquarium’ bill. Like little monkeys, and some tortoises, and an ant display. I never realised until the first time I saw an ant display just how hypnotic they are to watch. When you think of animals you want to see at a zoo or an aquarium or an animal park or whatever, you don’t think of ants, but they are something to watch.
Those are my highlights. Otters, ducks and ants. But I do just love looking at animals generally, which I’m sure is a sentiments a lot of people would agree with.
And that was the three days in the Lake District. I’ll try to get the photos up during the next week, at the least, because I always seem to have a mental queue of posts I need to do now. The solution is, of course, to create my posts faster. So let’s see if I can manage that.