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The Cumbria Way Walking Guide in the Lake District

Posted by Luci Ackers on 4 November 2021
Related property: Merlewood
The Cumbria Way Walking Guide in the Lake District

If you're planning a visit to our beautiful Merlewood property, you're bound to want to get out and explore some of the Lake District's amazing walking routes. One route not to be missed is The Cumbria Way -  a long distance linear footpath that bisects the Lake District National Park, travelling through some of Britain’s most iconic scenery.

Here we take a look at this iconic walking route, and how best you might enjoy it during your stay.

The Cumbria Way

The Cumbria Way links the two historic towns of Carlisle and Ulverston and winds its way in a north-south, 70-mile route through fells and woodland, over dales, across open countryside and along picturesque lakeside paths. It’s a walk that provides you with a fantastic excuse to get out and about and allows you to discover a vast amount of wildlife along the way. The Lake District has so much to offer in terms of nature and landscape, it is easy to see why this stunning area of England is not only a National Park, but also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Despite crossing the Lake District, the Cumbria Way is quite an easy route without too many hills. There's only one Wainwright Fell on the path, and that can be avoided. This makes it perfect for novices and beginners, or anyone who likes a rel.axing stroll that takes in the sights without climbing endless hills and mountains.

Where is The Cumbria Way?

The Cumbria Way starts at the sculpture in the Gill in Ulverston, South Cumbria, then winds north through the Lake District to finish at the Tourist Information Centre in Carlisle. On the way, it takes walkers past Langdale, Barrowdale, Coniston, Derwent Water and Caldbeck.

The Cumbria Way Walk

The Cumbria Way is relatively easy to pick up and drop as and when you wish to (or you could challenge yourself to the full 70 miles and walk it in stages!). Because it is waymarked and crosses such varying landscapes it’s a great one to make your own and is simple to park and walk just your desired section. The waymarkers are little green and yellow circular signs with an arrow that will keep you on the right tracks.

At Merlewood you are just a 20-minute drive from Ulverston, so you may choose to start your walk from there. The historic market town is just north of Morecambe Bay and has several listed buildings, particularly around the market square. If you are planning on visiting, it’s worth coming on a Thursday or a Saturday, which is the market days.

The Five Stages of the Cumbria Way

The start of the Cumbria Way can be found in The Gill Car Park, which is north of the main centre of Ulverston. Stage one of the Cumbria Way will take you on a 15-mile adventure north to Coniston. The section is very beautiful, covering open fields and then hugging the western shore of Coniston Water. You’ll have wonderful views over the lake to Grizedale Forest and will see some great rock formations too.

The full route can be broken into a further four stages:

Two – Coniston to Langdale (11 miles)

Three – Langdale to Keswick (15 miles)

Four – Keswick to Caldbeck (14 miles)

Five – Caldbeck to Carlisle (15 miles)

If you take a look at the WalkLakes website you’ll be able to see a really detailed map to help you plan your journey.

Merlewood to Ulverston

Merlewood is beautifully located just north of Grange over Sands on Morecambe Bay. To get to Ulverston you’ll be travelling 20 minutes by car. Aim for the A590 towards Barrow and Newby Bridge and it will loop you straight to Ulverston.

The Cumbria Way Walk FAQ's

How long does it take to walk the Cumbria Way?

For most people, the Cumbria Way takes five days to walk, but some choose to stretch it over six.

Is the Cumbria Way waymarked?

Yes, the route is marked throughout - look for the green and yellow circular signs with an arrow. However, some sections are less clear than others, so we recommend you take a map.

Where is the start of the Cumbria Way?

The Cumbria Way starts at the sculpture in the Gill in Ulverston, South Cumbria, then winds north through the Lake District to finish at the Tourist Information Centre in Carlisle.

Can you cycle the Cumbria Way?

For those who like to explore on two wheels, take a look at the Cumbria Way Cycle Route. It follows a very similar route to the main Cumbria Way, but is suitable for bicycles.

How many miles is the Cumbria Way?

In total, the Cumbria Way is 70 miles long.

Luci Ackers

Luci Ackers

Luci loves getting out and about for a good cycle ride or easy-going walks in the countryside, and thoroughly enjoyed the time she previously spent working for the National Trust. Her love of writing started from a young age and on rainy days nothing beats curling up in a secret corner with a good book.

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