Hawkshead Walks & Outdoor Activities

Tread in the footsteps of Beatrix Potter around Hawkshead along beautiful local walks like the Tarn Hows walk and sculpture trail walks in nearby Grizedale Forest. Grizedale is also a top spot in the Lakes for mountain bike trails and family outdoor activity centres whilst Esthwaite Water near Hawkshead is renowned as one of the top fishing lakes in the Lake District.

A choice of stunning Lake District walks surround Hawkshead village and the three lakes of Coniston Water, Windermere and adjacent Esthwaite Water offer a wealth of water sports, boat trips and outdoor activities. The National Trust has a strong presence around Hawkshead and local walks like Tarn Hows and walking around Wray Castle and Claife Heights estate have strong links to Beatrix Potter.

Tarn Hows Walk

The walk to Lakeland beauty spot Tarn Hows from Hawkshead is one of the most popular walks around the village offering easy access walking trails and wonderful picnic spots around the stunning man-made lake here which is surrounded by pine and spruce woodland. The Tarn Hows site nestles between Hawkshead and Coniston, and features a circular walk of around 1 3/4 miles long. Popular with families, Tarn Hows has spectacular mountain views and is the perfect spot for a family walk or picnic.

The Tarn Hows estate came into the care of the National Trust via Beatrix Potter who sold part of the estate at cost price to the Trust in 1930 and the rest was donated after Potter's death in 1943.

A variety of breathtaking walking trails feature at Tarn Hows with a main circular accessible pathway skirting around the manmade lake. Tarn Hows walking leaflets are available from the National Trust in the main Tarn Hows car park and the X31 Tarn Hows Tourer bus service between Coniston, Hawkshead and Tarn Hows runs regularly over the summer season.

Cycling and Walking in Grizedale Forst

Grizedale Forest is around 3 miles south of Hawkshead and is a mecca for family outdoor activities. A Go Ape outdoor activity centre with forest zip wire features here as well as on-site bike hire. Pick up cycling and walking trail guides from the on-site Grizedale Forest Park visitor centre.

The North Face Trail in Grizedale Forest is a 16km loop with 9 sections of thrilling single track, renowned as one of the best mountain biking trails in the Lake District. Gentle family cycling trails and sculpture trails also feature in the forest park. A wide choice of family waymarked walking trails branch out from the Grizedale visitor centre just south of Hawkshead which is open daily and has an on-site cafe and shop.

Fishing on Esthwaite Water

Glacial lake Esthwaite Water running south from Hawkshead towards Sawrey is one of the North West's top fishing lakes, rich in trout, pike, coarse and roach. Esthwaite Water Trout Fishery on the south western shores of Esthwaite Water is a one-stop-shop for fishing tuition, tackle, boat and equipment hire and fishing tuition.