We have recently visited the wonderful Ullswater in the Lake District. Have you ever been? It is such a beautiful part of the country. We stayed for the weekend and enjoyed a great day with Ullswater Steamers and visited Lowther Castle and Gardens. There is so much to see and do – we didn’t even scratch the surface. I am sure a return visit will be required at some point to explore what else the beautiful lakes have to offer.
During our weekend, we were lucky enough to be invited along to explore Lowther Castle and Gardens in Penrith, Lake District – and I have to say we were really looking forward to our visit.
Lowther Castle and Gardens
Lowther Castle is a real gem of a find. It was built at the turn of the 19th century, but in 1957 the castle was demolished. Seventy years on, Lowther Castle has seen major renovations and is now a popular visitor attraction offering impressive ruins, beautiful gardens and a wonderful adventure playground.
We arrived at Lowther Castle at lunchtime, just as the sunshine decided to make an appearance. We didn’t get a chance to look around the castle initially as the girls had heard that the adventure playground was pretty impressive, and they were super eager to head to the gardens and check it out.
The gardens were spectacular, with a huge expanse of woodland, wild flowers and beautifully maintained lawns. Walk through the gardens and you will find the lost castle towards the rear of the grounds, hiding in the woodland. The lost castle has been described as ‘one of Britain’s largest outdoor adventure playgrounds’ and it truly is spectacular. It is hard to describe just how big the lost castle actually is, but it is built high in the canopy of the woods, imitating the design of Lowther Castle itself. The castle is constructed from over 18,000 metres of timber providing an array of activities – and designed to encourage families to enjoy exploring and having fun together.
We visited with our friends, and collectively we had an age range of 9 months – 6 years. I was sceptical that a play area could accommodate everyone but I was impressed that there really is something for all ages. Zip wires, turrets, slides, rope swings and monkey bars entertained the older children, and the smaller zip wires, swings, pathways climbing frames, and sandpits entertained the younger adventurers.
Hidden in the woodland there is the ‘into the woods cafe,’ which is a great spot to stop and rest tired legs and let tired mummies and daddies sample the hot and cold snacks and drinks that are available to purchase.
We stayed in the Lost castle for a couple of hours, it is such a wonderful concept. They have literally thought of everything and it is most definitely a kids ‘heaven.’ Another thing I liked is that you can get around some parts of the lost castle with a pushchair, as there are ramps dotted around to access the castle. It did take me a while to work out the routes, and I did get lost a couple of times but great to be able to take the pushchair into the woods and keep all your paraphernalia with you. We had such an enjoyable and fun afternoon together and the children sported huge smiles for most of the day.
Top Tip – Wear good shoes.
It did take us quite a while to round the children up and persuade them to leave, but it was nearly home time and we were hoping to catch a bite to eat in the cafe before we left. There is a great menu for adults and children and the prices are reasonable too. I can definitely vouch for the Marsbar krispie cake !
Just before we headed off on our long journey home, we took a walk around the exhibition and then made our way back to the campervan. I spotted a wonderful array of colour just as we were leaving, and had to go back to take some pictures of the most wonderful display of VW campervans outside Lowther castle that I have ever seen.
Heading home, and all three children were asleep before we even left the car park.
In the words of my 6 year old…”mummy this is the best playground I have EVER been to!”
I don’t think I need to add any more ….. if you are in the area – Lowther Castle and Gardens is definitely worth a visit.
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**Disclosure – we were given complimentary passes to Lowther Castle by Cumbria Tourism. All views and opinions are of my own and my family.**
For more information head over to www.golakes.co.uk