A walking weekend in the heart of the Lake District with hills, lakes, mountain trails and stunning scenery.
FoodSome provided. Details below
Difficulty LevelsMultiple walk options available See itinerary below
for more details
This weekend lies right at the heart of the English Lake District, former home of Wordsworth and an excellent starting point to explore fells both big and small. It’s also the home of the famous Grasmere Gingerbread, which is enough reason to go!
We will be based just outside the village of Grasmere, nestled where the River Rothay meets Grasmere lake; the hillsides are dotted with fantastic viewpoints, dark crags, and a great collection of paths. The village is a winding stony maze of tearooms, local shops and pubs, where we can while away the afternoons and evenings in one of the places that has inspired poets for over a hundred years. Be aware that after visiting Grasmere, you may want to live here!
In a nutshell
- Head out for two guided walks in the heart of Lakeland. Whatever the route, the scenery is magnificent.
- Relax in one of the many tearooms or pubs of Grasmere during the evening, or kick back in the hostel.
- Enjoy some excellent meals in the company of a great group of people.
- Have the option of taking a day to explore Grasmere and the historical sights, including Wordsworth’s house and the Georgian villa of Allan Bank.
A bit about the area:
The Central and Eastern Fells of the Lake District
Grasmere lies between the Central Fells, which run from the Langdale Pikes all the way north to Keswick, and the Eastern Fells, which includes the whole Helvellyn ridge and the nearby mountain of Fairfield. To the north of Grasmere the land rises up to the mountain pass of Dunmail Raise, and to the south the valley winds its way eventually to Ambleside and England’s largest lake, Windermere.
The hills are a dramatic mixture of wide rolling ridges and steep rocky crags, with a number of tarns (mountain lakes) accessible from the village, including Easedale Tarn and Grisedale Tarn, both of which have waterfalls nearby. Two of the Lake District’s most beautiful lakes, Grasmere and Rydal Water, are just a short walk away.
You are welcome to arrive from 5pm onwards in the hostel, which is just outside Grasmere. A Large Outdoors host will be there to meet you, and soon the whole group of walking companions will have assembled in the lounge area, or at the nearest pub, which is only 400 metres away.
Dinner will be served at 8pm and is usually followed by the cheese board, and a short talk about the plans for the next two days, an update on the weather forecast, and a bit of information about the area.
There will also be time to ask questions about equipment, food and water, and whatever else you’ll need for the walk.
Breakfast will be served at 8am so there’s plenty of time to prepare your bags and get enough to eat before setting out. We’ll confirm the walking options and answer any questions you may have. The emphasis on all walks is having a nice day out and appreciating the scenery rather than force-marching people to a summit, so don’t be too anxious if this is your first time.
Ingredients are provided to make your own packed lunches; alongside the bread and sandwich fillings are a good selection of biscuits, crisps and fruit to get you through the day.
Our qualified mountain leaders will then decide on the day’s walk. We have several options to choose from, as it’s such a great venue, and if the group is big enough then we may have different walk options for you to choose from. Just to give you an idea of the kind of walks we’re considering, here are some ideas:
How many walk options are offered?
On each of our weekends we aim to offer two or more walk options each day, so you have a choice of a harder or easier day out. However, this is not always possible. On weekends where there is a small group, instead of cancelling the weekend, we will all head out on the same walk. This walk will be planned so that everyone can have a good day out, with the aim being a social group exploration of the local countryside.
Late afternoon onwards
You are welcome to explore more of the village, visit the pubs and tea rooms with your new walking friends, or relax in the social rooms at our accommodation, named by the Guardian as ‘the Lake District’s finest independent hostel’.
Later in the evening we’ll head out to dinner in an excellent local pub, so don’t eat too much when out in town! After dinner we’ll run through the plan for the next day. From this point on you’re free to stay in the pub or get some well-earned rest (the hostel also has a sauna)!
After breakfast, it’s time to pack up and assemble into groups for the second walk. It’s likely that we’ll be walking straight from Grasmere, and options include:
After the walks, we’ll assemble for Sunday lunch at one of the local pubs before saying our goodbyes. Feel free to take more of the afternoon to wander round Grasmere and pick up some treats for the journey … and don’t forget the gingerbread!
Who will be looking after you...
Grasmere Independent Hostel, our 4 star hostel for the weekend (5 stars on Trip Adviser) has been exclusively hired for our use and is a beautiful building, just outside Grasmere and very close to a pub. There is a drying room, large lounge with great views, and did we mention the sauna…
They have received excellent reviews from Lonely Planet and The Guardian; and the inside has been completely refurbished to make it modern and comfortable while retaining its countryside character.
You are welcome to arrive any time from 5pm onwards and settle in before we serve an evening meal at about 8pm. Please let us know if you intend arriving after 10pm.
For this weekend we provide the following meals: evening meal on Friday, breakfasts, and a packed lunch for Saturday’s walk. On Saturday night w head to a local pub for dinner which is not included. On the Sunday, we usually head to a local pub or café for lunch, which is not included.
As well as meals, we also provide a variety of complimentary soft drinks and beverages – tea & coffee which includes herbal, fruit and decaffeinated options and fruit squashes. We do not supply alcohol but you are welcome to bring your own.
This is offered on a single sex shared room basis. The venue also has a limited number of twin rooms. All bedding is provided but you will need to bring your own towel..
Please note we are unable to accept dogs on this weekend, with the exception of registered guided dogs which are welcome on all of our trips.
Grasmere Independent Hostel
LA22 9RU Show me
What our members have to say...
I have attended Large Outdoors weekends for the last two years , achieving many challenges in the British countryside. Every weekend has been very well organised, in beautiful locations, wonderful walks, nutritious food with lovely people.
I have learned new skills and gained confidence in the outdoors from the mountain leaders. I thoroughly enjoy every weekend and always look forward to the next.Elizabeth BrooksMember Since 2014
I have been joining Large Outdoors on their outdoor adventures for many years now. I wasn’t always an active person and as a self-confessed city dweller I never thought I would appreciate so much of what is on offer when you leave the suburbs behind you. Large Outdoors has not only made me appreciate what natural beauty is on our door step, it has also given me the confidence to challenge myself and see things differently.Shad EverettMember since 2009
Since my first Large Outdoors weekend I have rediscovered my love for the countryside, met so many great people and had a whole lot of fun. I've sailed around the Inner Hebrides on a luxurious yacht, climbed the 3 national peaks Snowdon, Ben Nevis and Scafel Pike, danced my socks off at the Halloween and New Year celebrations and fallen in love with the beautiful Isle of Skye. Every trip has been amazing fun and I have met so many lovely people and made friends for life. Cheers Large Outdoors!Karen RobertsMember Since 2012
I love the concept of the Large Outdoors weekends and I like to have at least one or two booked for the future, to have something to look forward to. A weekend trip finds me visiting some fabulous parts of the country: Northumberland, Dorset, Brecon Beacons, Lake District, North York Moors... hills, mountains, moors and coast - all well covered by the amazing choice of locations to pick from, with decent (or lovely!) accommodation, great food and qualified walk leaders. They're also very good value.Sue LangfordMember since 2008
I thoroughly enjoyed the experience from beginning to end. The host Kendra was very welcoming upon arrival at the youth hostel, all walkers and climbers were friendly and we got on great as a group. The home cooked food was amazing and the idea of 'kitchen angels' worked really well. The rock climbing instructor and his son were brilliant and helped us all, providing constant guidance and encouragement.Penny GraingerMember Since 2016