Holiday Cottages in the Lake District:
A Wealth of Choice

As the title indicates, self catering Lake District holiday cottages are in plentiful supply.They are to found throughout the National park and surrounding areas of Cumbria. High specification penthouse-style apartments, often in ancient country buildings, will suit some. Lower-priced cottages in town or village centres, clean but basically furnished, may be more suitable for the smaller budget of a young family in these times of financial constraint. Pet friendly Lake District cottages are to be found in most of the county.

Pooley Bridge - Lake District cottages

A Street in Pooley Bridge - Ullswater

All over Cumbria cottages are available in widely different sizes. You can find small single bedroom cottages well suited to a single individual or couple who will spend the majority of their time in the hills, regardless of weather conditions. At the other end of the spectrum there are substantial houses with five or six bedrooms, suitable for large, maybe extended families or groups of friends . In between these you will find self catering properties of a size and shape to suit just about any family’s circumstances.

Apart from free-standing cottages there are some hotels that have converted outbuildings attached to the main hotel for self catering. This gives the advantage of being able to use the hotel restaurants from time to time as you prefer. Also a few hotels have incorporated kitchen facilities into some of their larger rooms. And at Muncaster Castle in West Cumbria you will find b&b accommodation in the old coachman’s block but can in addition, if you wish, make use of a kitchen/dining area.

The buildings in the Lake District now rented out as holiday cottages vary greatly from one another as to their histories. Ancient manor houses have been turned into luxury accommodation. Many disused barns, quarrymen’s cottages, stone-built terraces and long disused farmyard outbuildings all now have new lives as holiday rental accommodation. Lake District ‘cottages’ in many cases may not have been cottages for very long. Change of use has often been quite imaginative.

Lake District Cottages – Why?

Why rent a holiday cottage rather than paying for a hotel? For one it might be price. Even if the initial cost ofaccommodation is around the same, you are able to keep tabs on eating costs more closely – much less expensive eating out and that can make a big difference to the total cost of a week’s holiday.. Yes, you do have to allow for the extra effort associated with food preparation and the dishwashing and many quite definitely prefer to incur the additional cost to have that done by hotel staff, but there are other points to consider. With a holiday cottage you have considerably more flexibility, can be a determining factor if you want to take your children and/or a pet.

Finally I feel it is important to mention a socially significant point – self-catering supplies during the holiday, such as food and household incidentals. There is quite a problem in several parts of Cumbria. Cottages are in many cases used only for a small part of the year. In some areas this is a significant proportion of the entire stock of residential property and few local families, who would be there all year round, can afford the inflated prices for local accommodation. Lake District villages as a consequence are all to familiar with local businesses closing. It seems only right, therefore, to appeal to visitors renting Lake District cottages to please patronise the village shops and other local services rather than driving substantial distances to a supermarket. Otherwise they may have gone by next time you visit.

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