There is plenty of walking from the cottage door or a short drive away. Little Mell Fell is just behind the cottage and is a fairly easy climb with the reward of breath taking views over Ullswater from the summit. Great Mell Fell is easily reached via a footpath across the valley. At the other end of the valley is Gowbarrow with the waterfalls at Aira Force on its flank. All three are Wainwright peaks.
For higher fells, the Helvellyn range, starting from Clough Head in the north, are within easy access of the cottage by car.
Looking for a flexible route? The Ullswater way is a circular route of 20 miles around the lake which can be done in sections and allows you to experience Ullswater at your own pace.
Sailing, kayaking and canoeing can all be enjoyed on Ullswater. We recommend Glenridding Sailing Centre which is 20 minutes away. There are various beaches around the lake. The easiest to access is Glencoyne with a National Trust car park. This is one of our favourite spots for an evening picnic and a dip.
If you would like an adventure on the lake, we recommend Reach Beyond Adventure which can arrange guided canoeing, kayaking, ghyll scrambling and bushcraft.
If you prefer to keep your feet dry, you can still enjoy the lake with Ullswater Steamers sail between Glenridding, Pooley Bridge, Aira Force and Howtown throughout the year.
For a walk, a picnic or some deer-spotting, Martindale is a great place to explore on the far side of Ullswater. It can be accessed by car via Pooley Bridge or by steamer to Howtown. There is a hotel with a tea room and walkers’ bar at Howtown or you could walk to the Lowther Tea Room near Sandwick (open March-November).
From Martindale, there are walks up Hallin Fell, Steel Knots, Beda Fell or Place Fell, to name but a few. In the autumn, you can hear and watch the deer rut on these fells. The ancient church of St Martin in Martindale is open to the public and well worth a visit. Look for the ancient yew tree in the churchyard which is known to have existed in at least 1220, but could be older. It is said that its boughs were used to produce longbows for Agincourt.
The visitors centre at Rheged is only 10 minutes’ drive away and a good option for a rainy day. There are shops, cafés, a wide-screen cinema and there is usually an exhibition.
The stately home and gardens at Dalemain are about 15 minutes’ drive from Greenbarn and are open Sun-Thurs, March to October. The house has been in the Hasell family since 1679 and was extended in Gerogian times, but parts of the Tudor house and the medieval pele tower still exist. Entrance to the house Sun-Wed is by guided tour from 10.30-2.30 which is thoroughly recommended to get the most out of your visit. From 2.30pm, it is possible to walk through the house unguided. There is a tea room in the medieval hall.