Derwent Water

Derwent Water is a highly sought-after lake destination near Keswick, a bustling town just off the A66, with numerous attractions and stores.

The Cumbria Way, a nationally recognized trail, runs along one side of the lake and is surrounded by the scenic Cat Bells, a Wainwright Fell popular among beginner hikers.

The lake also offers steamer rides and a variety of boats for rent.

With its clear blue waters, towering mountains, and lush green forests, it’s no wonder this lake is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the region.

Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you make the most of your visit to Derwent Water.

Keswick is a thriving town with many shops, cafes, and pubs.

Across from the Lakeside Car Park lies Hope Park, a large park that boasts a restaurant, snack shop, mini golf, pitch and putt courses, and a small boating pond.

You can catch a steamer ride or rent a boat at the lakeside car park by the lake and dine at a cafe or theatre with a restaurant.

The National Trust shop nearby offers duck food to feed the plentiful geese.

Public restrooms are available in the car park.

Things to do at Derwent Water:

  1. Go for a walk: The Cumbrian Way is a nationally recognized trail that provides an easy way to discover the beauty of Cumbria.

    The trail runs through Keswick and along the western shore of Derwent Water, passing through woodland and along the lake’s edge, with plenty of picturesque picnic spots.

    Access to the Cumbrian Way from Keswick can be found down a small side street near Lucas’ Italian Restaurant on the A5271 (Grid Ref NY 264 237).

    You can follow the trail to the village of Grange and then return to Keswick on the other side of the lake along the B5289, a total distance of approximately 8 miles.

    Alternatively, by the lake shore in Keswick, numerous woodland areas offer short walks, such as the trail to Friars Crag (NY 264 223), which provides a stunning view of the lake and the Borrowdale Fells.

  2. Take a boat tour: Take a leisurely boat tour of the lake and enjoy stunning views of the surrounding mountains and forests.

  3. Visit the Castlerigg Stone Circle: This ancient stone circle is just a short drive from Derwent Water and offers a unique insight into the region’s history and culture.

  4. Visit the nearby town of Keswick: This charming town is just a short drive from Derwent Water and offers a range of exciting shops, cafes, and pubs.

Where to eat:

  1. The Derwentwater Hotel: This charming hotel serves a range of classic pub grub, including hearty pies, sandwiches, and soups.

  2. The Old Crown Inn: This cosy pub serves various delicious dishes, including locally sourced seafood, salads, and sandwiches.

  3. The Keswick Tea Rooms: This quaint tea room serves a range of light bites, including sandwiches, soups, and cakes.

Where to stay:

  1. The Derwentwater Hotel: This charming hotel offers comfortable and stylish guest rooms with views of the surrounding hills.

  2. The Keswick YHA: This budget-friendly option offers comfortable dormitory rooms and is just a short walk from Derwent Water.

  3. The Derwent Water Holiday Park: This holiday park offers a range of comfortable self-catering cottages and lodges with stunning views of the lake.


Keswick offers several options for parking, including a large pay-and-display lakeside car park located at Grid Ref NY 266 229, easily accessible with signs directing from the town centre.

There are also several car parks within the town. Another option is the B5289, which runs along the eastern edge of the lake and has several parking spots available along the route, including one at Grid Ref NY 267 196.

On the western side of the lake, a single-track trail connects the villages of Portinscale and Grange and offers several parking spots, such as the foot of Cat Bells (Grid Ref NY 247 212) and at the entrance to Brandelow Park woods (Grid Ref NY 249 202).

These parking areas provide access to the Cumbrian Way, which runs along the western shore of Derwent Water.

In conclusion, Derwent Water is a truly stunning destination, offering visitors the chance to escape city life and immerse themselves in nature.

Its range of activities, delicious dining options, and comfortable accommodation makes it the perfect place to spend a few days exploring the Lake District.

So why not plan your trip today and discover all this beautiful lake has to offer?