Visit Cumbria

Walk Around Buttermere

The circuit around Buttermere is one of the prettiest low level circular walks that I know of, with the added bonus of two cafes, two pubs and an ice cream van to choose from AND a tunnel!

There are two stiles on the walk and also a rocky patch, which you could certainly negotiate a buggy over, but unfortunately I don't think that this section would be suitable for a wheel chair.


the tunnel at Buttermere

We started the walk from the centre of Buttermere. There is a car park just between the Bridge Hotel and The Fish Inn by the river. You can either start the walk by heading down to the Lake of Buttermere or by setting off through Syke Farm Yard, past their cafe and ice-cream parlour (if you follow this route please do keep any dogs on a leash).

If you opt to start from the Lake then these photographs follow the clockwise route. The Walk can, of course, be done in either direction. If it is busy then I would set off in the opposite direction to everyone else! There is also the option to park at Gatesgarth (marked on the map below) where there is normally an ice cream van waiting to cater to weary travellers!

Buttermere Tunnel

What is it about tunnels? Even at our age we enjoyed it. Apparently the rock was blasted through by a previous landowner so that he could take a circular walk around Buttermere.

walk around buttermere

The paths are well maintained and a leisurely pace makes this around a two hour walk. There were so many picnic opportunities though, that had the weather been a little kinder, we may well have stayed longer and even dipped our toes in the mere.

Walk around buttermere

This section is the only short stretch which may be tricky if you have a push-chair with you. If it turns out that this section is not suitable or you are worried then you could do the walk anti-clockwise, which would make the walk longer before you got to this point then just retrace your steps.

walk around buttermere

Getting teens out might be a problem - but once out it seems they just regress back to being a boy! Despite the low cloud and drizzle this turned into a fabulous family meander.

walk around buttermere

And it seems you are never too old to paddle in wellies either!

buttermere circuit

If ever there was a photo-shoot opportunity this must surely be it - even without the sun and with a small snap-shot camera you can get the gist of the potential

buttermere in cumbria

Perfect spot for picnics or skimming stones during lazy summers - or for donning waterproofs if you have a day of drizzle

The next section of the route is on the road, but this isn't normally busy and is rewarded by an ice-cream van at the Gatescarth Car Park. From here the route is sign posted back towards the lake to complete the rest of the circuit on well made paths by the lakeside

buttermere images

What a difference a day makes! This photo was taken on the last stretch of the walk just the day before, when the weather had quite simply been magical and we'd been up on the tops the Buttermere Fells over Red Pike and High Stile.

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The Bridge Hotel & The Fish Inn at Buttermere both have beer terraces and serve bar snacks

The Croft Farm Cafe and Syke Farm Cafe have inside & outside seating for cafe snacks and ice-creams

An ice-cream van is normally to be found at the Gatesgarth car park at the Honister end of Buttermere





Cottages Buttermere

cottage crummock water

A selection of carefully chosen cottages around Buttermere



Via Ferrata Extreme Experience

via ferrata extreme

The Via Ferrata Extreme Experience is just a few minutes drive from Buttermere





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