Holiday Brochures and Tourist Information for Cumbria
Spectacular lake and mountain scenery. Climb the fells or explore the lakes and picturesque valleys. Nestling on the shores of Derwentwater, the traditional market town of Keswick has a wide array of shops, restaurants and galleries.
Plan your exciting holiday adventure in Eden, Cumbria, the Lake District. You are invited to participate in an action packed or relaxing break, exploring culture and enjoying tasty local food against a backdrop of lakes, mountains and peaceful river valleys.
History - Cumbria was formed from the old counties of Cumberland, Westmorland, and part of North Lancashire, and is now England's second largest county in size. Inside is the Lake District National Park, an area some 30 miles across, containing England's highest mountains (four over 3000 ft), and some of Englands biggest lakes.
Easy to get to - Cumbria can be reached by road and rail. The M6 motorway travels north through the centre of Cumbria - junction 36 near Kendal, junction 40 at Penrith and junctions 42-44 at Carlisle. Carlisle is a major railway junction on the West Coast Main Line from London Euston to Glasgow, which also has stations at Penrith and Oxenholme (for Kendal and Windermere). Carlisle is also served by lines from Dumfries, Newcastle, and Leeds.
Areas of Cumbria
North Central Cumbria - includes Cockermouth, Keswick, Borrowdale, Buttermere and Loweswater
Cockermouth is a market town of some seven thousand inhabitants, which lies at the north western corner of the English Lake District. It dates from Norman times, and developed at the confluence of two rivers - the Derwent and Cocker. Much of the medieval street plan remains, and there are many features of historical interest.
Keswick is a market town of some 5000 inhabitants. It has a fantastic setting between Derwentwater, Blencathra and Skiddaw, and is the favourite centre for Lakeland climbers and serious fell walkers.
South Central Cumbria - includes Ambleside, Windermere, Grasmere, Hawkshead, Coniston
Ambleside has a population of about 2600, and is beautifully situated in the Rothay valley one mile north of the head of Lake Windermere. One of the major centres for climbing and walking, it is a good central point for the ordinary visitor and has routes to most parts of the Lake District.
West Cumbria - includes Whitehaven, Workington, Maryport, Wigton, Sellafield, Millom, Eskdale, Wasdale, St Bees
There are four main valleys, each with their own distinct character, leading from the coast into the heart of the Lake District: Ennerdale, Eskdale, Wasdale and Dunnerdale. Wasdale is the home of England's highest mountain Scafell Pike (3206 ft) and the deepest lake - Wastwater.
Western Lakeland is a land of vivid and exciting contrasts, lying between the mountains and the sea. The coastal towns are within minutes of complete peace and tranquility. Whitehaven is the main administrative centre for Copeland Borough Council, and Workington for Allerdale Borough Council.
East Cumbria - includes Penrith, Eden Valley, North Pennines, Alston, Appleby, Kirkby Stephen
The Eden Valley is remarkably little known, but is visited time and again by those who have discovered it. The River rises in Mallerstang, and flows through the old market towns of Kirkby Stephen and Appleby. As it moves northward towards the sea at the Solway Firth beyond Carlisle, it becomes broader and slower, but has dramatic moments where sandstone cliffs plunge down to the water.
The Eden Valley lies between the North Pennines (an Area of Oustanding Natural Beauty) and the Lake District. To the south is the Yorkshire Dales National Park, and to the North lie Carlisle and Hadrian's Wall.
North Cumbria - includes Carlisle, Caldbeck, Brampton, Lanercost, Bewcastle, Hadrian's Wall
Carlisle is a busy industrial and market town with a population of about 70000. It is Cumbria's capital city, home of Radio Cumbria, Border TV, and a variety of industries including United Biscuits and Pirrelli. It has a long history, well portrayed in the Tullie House Museum, and contains Cumbria's only cathedral. It is a major railway junction, with routes to Scotland, London, Newcastle, West Cumbria and the famous Settle-Carlisle Railway.
South Cumbria - includes Kendal, Cartmel, Barrow-in-Furness, Kirkby Lonsdale, Yorkshire Dales, Sedbergh
The The Settle-Carlisle Railway was the last great mainline railway to be built in this country. Consisting of 72 miles of track with 17 major viaducts spanning the ravines and 14 tunnels. it was completed for passenger travel in 1876, and advertised as the most picturesque route to Scotland from England. Despite recent threats of closure, it has now been given a new lease of life, with much improvement work being done, and some of the closed stations re-opened and renovated.
Hadrian's Wall is the most important monument built by the Romans in Britain. It stretches seventy-three miles from Wallsend near Newcastle, across the neck of England to the Solway in North West Cumbria, and stands today as a reminder of the past glories of one of the world's greatest empires. In May 2003, the Hadrian's Wall Path was opened as one of the 'National Trails'.
The River Eden is entirely Cumbrian and is one of the few large rivers in England that flows northwards. The source of the river is on the high limestone fells above Mallerstang Common, near the North Yorkshire border, and makes its way across eastern Cumbria, with the hills of the North Pennines to the East, and the fells of the Lake District to the west, to Carlisle. Here its merges with other rivers to form the great Solway Firth estuary, before reaching the open sea, 90 miles (145 km) from its source.
The National Trust's most important work in Cumbria is the conservation of about one quarter of the Lake District National Park. Almost all the central fell area and the major valley heads are owned or held on lease by the Trust.
Bitesize Britain allows you to order free holiday brochures featuring Cumbria tourist information, things to do and see and places to stay – accommodation mostly inspected and graded by the Cumbria tourist board or similar organisation.