Windermere station is a beautiful 15 minute train journey from Kendal and with a tourist information and kitchenware superstore next to the station, the journey felt much more civilised than trying to navigate unfamiliar country roads in a rented car.
Since we had arrived directly after breakfast, we decided to delay walking the mile down hill to the lake itself and first take in the views from Orrest Head. Unfortunately the weather was not on our side and while the many different shades of grey-coloured clouds over the lake provided atmospheric views, the wind blew showers of rain at us frequently enough that we were not encouraged to linger at the top. The helpful lady in the tourist information had recommended an extended walk from Orrest Head so with the indomitable spirit of people who got up early and will enjoy their holiday in spite of the weather, we struck out over grazing land divided by picture postcard dry stone walls to reach the Lakeland Horticultural Society’s Holehird Gardens. The rain did not last and even I thought the garden was pretty impressive for its range of flora and colour.
Retracing our steps it did not seem long before we were back in the town of Windermere and warming ourselves up on some proper comfort food at Lazy Daisy’s café. Windermere was much less touristy than I was expecting, even for a working Thursday, although later I realised that this was probably due to it still being another mile from the lakeside! The lakeside itself was overrun by SAGA coach parties as expected, but there were some very quiet walking paths which quickly took us away from the hubbub to some pretty spots such as the Sheriff’s Walk, Cockshott point and Queen Adelaide’s hill.