As a family, we had been planning our return to the Lake District ever since visiting the area all too briefly back in 2008. Then we had been in the south, visiting Kendall and then the village of Crosthwaite. This time, we based ourselves in the north, staying in Portinscale, just outside of Keswick (on Derwentwater). We rented a wonderful self-catering cottage there for a week and it was the perfect base from which to explore the region. We rented a car and thank goodness since it gave us the freedom to roam widely and freely. While continental Europe has public transportation neatly and thoughtfully designed for outdoor enthusiasts looking to walk and climb, England does not!
(Warning: these Lake District posts are going to have only the barest of details accompanied by an overwhelming number of photos!)
On our first full day, we set out from Portinscale and walked up Walla Crag, a small fell with beautiful views over Derwentwater. This was my favourite walk of the entire trip (and the only fell we ended up doing, unfortunately) and the views some of the most memorable.
On the second day, we took a beautiful circular drive from Portinscale. It was a stunning day and we wanted to take advantage of the good weather to see as much of the area as we could – who knew what rain the rest of the week might bring! We went through the Newlands Valley, stopped at Buttermere where we walked around the lake, continued on to the Borrowdale Valley where we had lunch, and then finished the day at the Castlerigg Stone Circle.