A Guide to Pooley Bridge and Glenridding.
If you're keen to explore the great beauty that the Lake District has to offer, you absolutely must stopover in the Pooley Bridge area. The Ullswater Steamers offer you the chance to hike some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, and the locals are the friendliest we've met on our trip.
PLAY: Ullswater Steamers
Ever since I mentioned to people that we were going to the Lake District, I’d had quite a few mention the Ullswater Steamers. They’re an award winning environmentally accredited Lake District attraction that have been running for over 150 years.
The cruises are very authentic, and you feel like you’re suddenly transported back in time to when the steamboat reigned supreme. With the Lake District recently been named as the newest UNESCO World Heritage Site, it’s little wonder why the Ullswater Steamers are one of the most popular attractions.
We hopped on at the Pooley Bridge Pier, bought an all-day hop off, hop on ticket and got a seat right at the back of the cruise. Ullswater runs a serpentine course for eight miles through the most picturesque scenery on Earth, and a particularly special view is the Helvellyn mountain. It’s Lakeland’s highest mountain, (950m) and stands at the South-Western end of the valley. It’s one of those things that you dream of seeing, and when you do you’re rendered speechless because it just doesn’t seem real.
The Ullswater Steamers are a great family attraction as they offer you the ability to see loads of the divine scenery in one day, and hope off and on at different piers. There are loads of walks to do in between the piers, and you can also download an accompanying app that gives you a verbal tour of where you’re walking.
My favourite thing about the Steamers, (besides the scenery), was easily that dogs were allowed on the Steamers. There were loads of the happiest canine faces I’ve ever seen, and it makes for a great day out with the family pet.
MOVE: Glennridding to Aira Force
During the Ullswater Steamers, we decided that we had to do a walk. It was a beautifully sunny day and we had our hiking boots on, ready to go. We decided to hope off the boat at Glenridding and walk to Air Force, where the famous Aira Force Waterfall lies.
It’s around a 3.5mile walk all up, and took us roughly 1.5 hours. It wasn’t a particularly difficult track to work, and the only reason we constantly stopped was because I couldn’t stop taking photos of our surroundings. Yes… I was that person who kept yelping with excitement at the views that were around us.
The walk was one of those ‘pinch-me’ moments, with the rolling mountains and sparkling lake only fuelling my emotional ephiphany. At one stage, I got a little teary because that walk really made me feel alive and made me realise how lucky I was to have the opportunity to be there.
EAT: Aira Force Tea Rooms
When we’d finished the Glendridding to Aira Force walk, we were starving. I have this extremely unique ability to stuff my face full of food, but in less than an hour later I’m starving again. We stumbled upon the Aira Force Team Room, and almost cried at the site of food.
Out of everywhere we’d been in Lake District, the staff at the AIra Force Tea Room were easily the most attentive and passionate about their jobs. Most of the food served was homemade, and there were signs posted throughout the tea room reminding patrons just where their money was going.
We both had a homemade sausage roll AND scones, and oh my lord we could have rolled out of there by the time we finished. During my lifetime, I’ve been fortunate to have a LOT of scones. Family members, friends and random bake sales at school meant I’ve been exposed to loads of scones during my life.
You know what? I’m just going to say it. The best scones in the entire WORLD are at the Aira Force Tea Room. Make sure you get the full shebang with tea, butter, jam and cream and let yourself experience the true taste of the Lake District.
STAY: The Pooley Bridge Crown Inn
After what some may call the world’s biggest day, we were relived to find out that our accommodation was less than a 5 minute walk from the Pooley Bridge Pier. The Crown Inn Pooley Bridge was extremely stylish, affordable and had super cute rooms. We both had a single bed, and I really love the layout of the room.
You can read the full review on the Crown Inn Pooley Bridge HERE.