Fantastic Facts About the Lake District
The Lake District is one of the most visited tourist destinations in the UK and it’s no surprise that people from all over the world love it. With amazing scenery, quaint villages and a host of different activities to take part in including hiking and cycling, it’s the perfect place for a family break any time of year. If you’re staying in a cottage in the lake district, here are some interesting facts about the area.
Here are some fantastic facts about the Lake District that you did not know:
Millions of Visitors – According to the National Trust, nearly 16 million people visit the region each year. One of the most popular attractions is the Windermere lake cruise which attracts a million passengers every year. In total, the Lake District covers 2,362 square kilometres or 912 square miles and the highest peak is Scafell Pike at 3,210 feet.
There’s Only One Lake – Technically, although it’s called the Lake District, there is just one true lake. Bassenthwaite Lake just north of Keswick is the only body of water that fits the exact definition. The others are meres (as in Windermere) and waters (as in Ullswater).
Britain’s Highest War Memorial – The National Trust was given Scafell Pike following the First World War to commemorate the dead and a memorial was erected on the site in 1919. Recently, this memorial has been restored by a team of rangers who camped up on the peak while the work was carried out.
Lake Windermere – Windermere is the biggest body of water in England and is thought to hold around 300 billion litres, stretching for about 11 miles and 1 mile at its widest point. Formed during the Ice Age, there are 19 small islands dotted across the water and it is an integral part of the natural history of the area, forming a highway for flocks of geese that settle there during the winter.
Biggest Liar in the World – The Lake District is home to the Biggest Liar in the World competition which takes place each year in the Wasdale Valley. People, including various celebrities, gather to tell the tallest tale they can in just five minutes off the cuff and scripts or prompts are barred.
The World’s Longest Pencil – Many people don’t know that the Lake District was the first home of graphite mines that were used to make pencils shipped all around the world. The biggest colouring pencil, 7.9 metres long, can still be seen at the Pencil Museum located in Keswick.
Sticky Toffee Pudding – A staple of British dinner tables for many years, the sticky toffee pudding was invented in the 70s by Francis Coulson who was inspired by the panoramic views of Ullswater. The originating recipe is a closely guarded secret but you can sample it if you visit Sharrow Bay Hotel.
Underwater Villages – With the rise in populations across the UK, in the late 1920s, more infrastructure was needed to provide water. This led to the creation of a reservoir in the Mardale Valley where two villages were submerged during the process. If there’s a drought and the water gets low enough, you can still see the remnants to this day.
The Right to Roam – Finally, the Lake District is the biggest National Park with the widest right to roam rules in the country. There are some 1,342 miles of footpaths that tourists and locals alike enjoy walking along each year. Some treks are more challenging than others – Helvellyn Ridge, for example, takes around six and a half hours to complete but has some of the most spectacular views of the surrounding countryside you could ever hope to see.