Skip to Content | Using this site

Live. Work. Explore.

Things to do in AmblesideAmbleside's Bridge House

Thanks to Ambleside's magnificent setting at the head of Lake Windermere , there's plenty of things to do in Ambleside. It's probably best known for being the perfect base for exploring the heart of the Lake District.

You’re in walkers’ heaven in Ambleside - enjoy gentle rambles through the Rydal and Grasmere valleys and climbs to spectacular views from Loughrigg and Wansfell. A short walk will take you to Stock Ghyll Force, a spectacular 70 foot waterfall. Ambleside is the gateway to the Langdale Valley, home to one of the most popular and distinctive mountain ranges in England. Want to save your legs? Drive up ‘the struggle’ to Kirkstone Pass Inn, the third highest pub in England, or take a lake cruise to Bowness and Lakeside from the terminal at Waterhead Pier.

Rooted in the medieval woollen trade, Ambleside is predominantly a Victorian town, built of dark grey slate. There are many restaurants and other places to eat in Ambleside  and an exciting range of arts, crafts, jewellery and interior design shops. Among other Ambleside attractions, you can visit Hayes Garden World, catch the latest film at the excellent cinemas, Zefirellis and Fellinis, or kit yourself out with the latest gear from the outdoor shops. Take in Ambleside Sports in July, the annual showcase for traditional Lakeland sports such as Cumberland and Westmorland wrestling, fell running and hound trails.

While in Ambleside, visit the Armitt Museum to learn about the town’s history and local characters including John Ruskin and Beatrix Potter. Discover the iconic St Mary's Church and Bridge House, one of the most photographed buildings in the Lake District and a popular subject for many artists, including Turner.

Ambleside... Did you know?

Before St Mary’s Church was built and consecrated in 1854, the deceased were carried nearly 4 miles along the Coffin Route to St Oswald’s Church in Grasmere for burial.

In the 1850s, ‘Chairy’ Rigg, a basket maker and chair repairer, brought up a family of six in the tiny Bridge House.

Find out more about Ambleside

Official Tourist Board Guide to Ambleside What's On in Ambleside?
Ambleside Community Website A Sense of Ambleside