10 Easier Family Walks in the Lake District You Should Try

10 Easier Family Walks in the Lake District You Should Try

By Dave Roberts   

on March 23, 2018   4.67/5 (6)

10 Easier Family Walks in the Lake District You Should Try

The Lake District boasts numerous fells and countless walks up them, from our very own Scafell Pike, to Helvellyn, Old Man of Coniston to Skiddaw and Blencathra. That’s not to say that there aren’t plenty of easier walks in the Lake District, suitable for families and children. Of course, you’ll know your kids and if they’d rather be scaling Great Gable or Catbells.

Are they these the best easier walks in the Lakes?  We don’t think it’s possible to compile a list of only 10 easier walks in the Lake District without leaving a few gems out! If we’ve missed your favourite our, then tell us in the comments! We might even be tempted to add it to the list. All these walks are from our sister site – Mud and Routes.

Ensure that you check out the weather forecast before setting out and that your’re properly equipped and prepared for the walk.

The Coffin Route Ambleside to Grasmere

Height Gained – 190 metres ,  Distance – 6.5 km, Time –2 hours 

Recently voted one of the nation’s top 100 walks, the coffin route follows the old corpse road between the two villages of Ambleside and Grasmere. It’s a good track, initially passing through Rydal Park and passing two of Wordsworth’s homes; Rydal Mount and Dove Cottage. The Coffin Route then continues high above Rydal Water and then on to Grasmere. You’ll need to account for the return trip for this walk, which is a reasonable 13km in both directions or you can catch a bus back to the start.

Easy Walk To Lily Tarn From Ambleside

Height Gained – 180 metres ,  Distance – 4.7 km, Time –2 hours 

While the summit of Loughrigg Fell  makes a good lower summit, this is an easier walk that’s much more manageable. This walk takes you to the tiny and picturesque Lily Tarn above Ambleside, and ideal spot for an active family picnic.Easier Family Walks in the Lake District You Should Try

Latrigg from near Keswick

Height Gained – 90 metres ,  Distance – 2 km, Time –1 hours 

You know that feeling, dragging the kids uphill, to complaints that there’s too much walking. Well you shouldn’t get many complaints with this walk from Keswick up Latrigg.. At only 2km in length and a barely perceptible climb of only 90m, this is a view that’s easily attained. The views should get them ready and raring to go for the next summit!

Easier Family Walks in the Lake District You Should Try

Castlerigg Stone Circle Walking Route from Keswick

Height Gained – 160 metres ,  Distance – 7 km, Time –2 hours 

You don’t need to climb a mountain for extensice views. The Castlerigg Stone Circle is so perfectly positioned, with extensive views towards Blencathra and Skiddaw. Those ancient Britons were quite in tune with their natural surroundings, and you get a feel of that walking around the stones. Fun Fact – try and get the kids counting the stones and see if anyone gets the same number.  ¡¿sʍouʞ oɥʍ = ɹǝʍsu∀

Easier Family Walks in the Lake District You Should Try

Walla Crag from Castlerigg

Height Gained – 200 metres ,  Distance – 3.6 km, Time –1.5 hours

Another walk from Keswick, and we’ll keep ’em coming! Wall Crag is 379m high, and is more of a viewpoint than a true summit, but worth an hour or two of your time.

Easier Family Walks in the Lake District You Should Try

Orrest Head from Windermere

Height Gained –100 metres ,  Distance – 2.3 km, Time –1 hour

Orrest Head has a particular importance in the history of fell walking in the Lake District. It was the first fell that Alfred Wainwright climbed, and the hill we have to thank for inspiring him to write his series of iconic Lake District guidebooks. Ascend this hill from the railway station, just as Wainwright did.

Easier Family Walks in the Lake District You Should Try

Ullswater Bridlweway

Height Gained –200 metres ,  Distance – 6 km, Time –2 hours 

An easy walk from Patterdale to Silver Bay on Ullswater. It returns on a higher bridleway, but you can also return the same way of you wanted an easier walk with less ascent. Good walking with both hills and lakes to enjoy.

Easier Family Walks in the Lake District You Should Try

Catbells From Hawes End Derwentwater 

Height Gained – 400 metres ,  Distance – 6.3 km, Time –2 hours 

No trip with the family to the Lake District would be complete without a climb up Catbells. Beware that this is a challenging little walk – and is classed ‘easier’ as compared to the surrounding hills rather than ‘easy’.  As parking is an issue,make a day of it and get to the walk start with the Keswick Launch to Hawes End.

Walk around Tarn Hows

Height Gained –300 metres ,  Distance – 8.4 km, Time –3 hours 

Tarn Hows is one of the most visited and scenic locations in the Lake District. While many will visit from their car, get active and view it in all it’s glory with this wonderful short walk. While the full route is a touch over the 8km we mention in the introduction, it’s been included as the route is easily cut short by missing out the summit of Black Fell by cutting across the circuit a bit sooner. A much easier loop can be completed by just walking around Tarn Hows

Lingmoor Fell and Blea Tarn

Height Gained –450 metres ,  Distance  7.5 km, Time –3 hours 

From the depths of Great Langdale, you can walk up to Blea Tarn. Surely this is one of the most scenic of the Lake District’s tarns, with the Langdale Pikes as a backdrop. It’s certainly among one of the more accessible. While the full walk is a sturdy 7.5km with 450 metres of climbing, you can easily cut the walk short by excluding Lingmoor Fell from this walk.

Easier Family Walks in the Lake District You Should Try


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Dave Roberts

Dave Roberts founded Walk Eryri in 2004, with the aim of providing routes that are off the beaten track. Walk Eryri is now part of Mud and Routes which continues to provide more off beat routes and walks in Snowdonia and beyond. Dave has been exploring the hills of Eryri for over thirty years, and is a qualified Mountain Leader. Dave also established Walk up Snowdon, Walk up Scafell Pike and Walk up Ben Nevis just to mention a few.

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Welcome to Walk up Scafell Pike

Walk up Scafell Pike is the dedicated on-line guidebook for walking routes up Scafell Pike in the English Lake District, with free walking maps and full guides to all the routes to the summit of England’s highest mountain.

Scafell Pike is the highest mountain in England at 978m high and is one of the mountains climbed on the Three Peaks Challenge walk. It’s a formidable mountain that needs respect, with no such thing as an easy route up  the mountain to be had. All the walks and hikes are a challenge, and well worth the effort to reach the roof of England.

The Routes to the Top of Scafell Pike page has an interactive map that shows all the walking routes to the summit of Scafell Pike from Wasdale Head, Scafell Pike from Borrowdale and Scafell Pike from Langdale as well as hotels, campsites and pubs near Scafell Pike (add your Lake District business for free), and there’s a page for each walk that shows the route, parking postcode,  a downloadable file for your GPS device as well as details on the weather for the mountain.

Check out the Frequently Asked Questions page for more Scafell Pike facts such as how long will it take to climb Scafell Pike, where can i start the walk from and other questions.

Main Walking Routes up Scafell Pike

Route Name Starting Point Parking Post Code Distance Ascent Walking Time
Scafell Pike from Wasdale or Wasdale Head Wasdale or Wasdale Head  CA20 1EX (Wasdale Head)  4.2km*  900m*  3-4 hours**
Scafell Pike from Seathwaite, Borrowdale (Corridor Route) Borrowdale  CA12 5XJ  15km (round trip)  1000m  6 hours+
Scafell Pike from Langdale Langdale  LA22 9JY 9km  1130m 4 hours**
Scafell Pike from Hardknott (southern approach) Eskdale Hardknott CA19 1TG – for Boot – then continue up Hardkott Pass to GR NY211 011  17km  1000m  6 hours
Scafell Pike Corridor Route from Wasdale Wasdale or Wasdale Head CA20 1EX (Wasdale Head)  7.8km*  970m*  3-4 hours **

*Distance/Ascent noted is for one way only.

**Time is for one way only, and variable. Very fit walkers can walk up and down in 3-4 hours(depending on the route)and will know their own timings and speed. If in doubt, assume the longest duration for your ascent and add the longest for your descent, depending on route. Add a good half hour or more for the summit stop as well.

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