|A drive around south east Cumbria which includes a number of interesting old market towns, picturesque rivers and valleys within the Yorkshire Dales National Park and an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty around Arnside.|
|Summary of main attractions on route (click on name for detail)|
|Distance||Attraction||Car Park Coordinates|
|0 miles||Kendal||N 54.33013, W 2.74567|
|9.1 miles||Killington New Bridge||N 54.31136, W 2.58144|
|10.8 miles||Brigflatts Meeting House||N 54.31638, W 2.55374|
|12.1 miles||Sedbergh||N 54.32403, W 2.52606|
|17.8 miles||Dent Village||N 54.27835, W 2.45568|
|22.2 miles||Barbondale||N 54.24257, W 2.52481|
|27.7 miles||Kirkby Lonsdale||N 54.20185, W 2.59654|
|32.5 miles||Hutton Roof Crags||N 54.17892, W 2.68776|
|36.8 miles||Lakeland Wildlife Oasis||N 54.19400, W 2.75384|
|38.4 miles||Heron Corn Mill||N 54.21264, W 2.77482|
|42.4 miles||Arnside Village||N 54.20388, W 2.83102|
|48.2 miles||Levens Hall||N 54.25987, W 2.77526|
|50.5 miles||Sizergh Castle||N 54.27951, W 2.76822|
|55.9 miles||Kendal||N 54.33013, W 2.74567|
Distance: 0 miles Location: Kendal, Westmorland Shopping Centre car park Coordinates: N 54.33013, W 2.74567
|Kendal market place|
The town has a myriad of old alleys and buildings and there are plenty of good shops, cafes and pubs. Castle Hill, across the river from the town centre, is home to the ruined Kendal Castle and has some wonderful views of the surrounding area. At the southern end of the town centre is the huge Parish Church, Museum of Lakeland Life & Industry and Abbot Hall Art Gallery. Also worth visiting is Kendal Museum and The Brewery Arts Centre which has an interesting and varied selection of events. Pay and display car park with toilet facilities.
Travelling:Turn left out of the multi-story car park then right at the nearby traffic lights, following signs to Sedbergh A684. Continue over the River Kent and soon approach a mini-roundabout where you take the second exit. Shortly, take the first left turn and continue past The Castle pub, then straight ahead at a T junction. Pass under a railway bridge and continue through Kendal suburbs. Beyond the Castle Green Hotel, the road starts to ascend steeply away from the town. Continue through pleasant undulating countryside for approx 5 miles to cross the M6 motorway. Beyond the motorway a twisty section leads to the top of a steep hill with wonderful views ahead towards the Howgill hills and Yorkshire Dales. At the bottom of the hill take the right turn on the B6256, at the house with a black horse on the front. Continue approx 0.6 miles to roadside parking at Killington New Bridge where it crosses the River Lune.
Distance: 9.1 miles Location: Killington New Bridge Coordinates: N 54.31136, W 2.58144
|River Lune from Killington New Bridge|
The impressive gorge carries the river between steep riverbanks and rocky cliffs with some very deep pools in places. The area is popular with local bathers in good weather but access to the river is tricky and the water contains plenty of hazards. A rough footpath continues northwards beyond the nature reserve across pleasant fields. Free entry and roadside parking at the bridge but no facilities.
Travelling:Continue along the minor road and shortly meet a T junction where you turn left on the A683. The road passes through open countryside near the River Rawthey for approx 1.2 miles to a lay-by on the left, opposite the minor road to Brigflatts.
Distance: 10.8 miles Location: Brigflatts Meeting House Coordinates: N 54.31638, W 2.55374
|Brigflatts Meeting House|
Travelling:Continue on the A683 and shortly meet a T junction where you turn right for Sedbergh, back on the A684. Immediately enter Sedbergh town and continue approx 0.6 miles to a narrow section followed by The Dalesman pub on the left. Immediately beyond this take the left turn on to Main Street. The narrow one-way street passes through the town centre. Soon, take the first left turn and Joss Lane car park is immediately on the right.
Distance: 12.1 miles Location: Sedbergh, Joss Lane car park Coordinates: N 54.32403, W 2.52606
|Sedbergh Main Street|
There are some great short walks through the town and down towards the picturesque River Rawthey. Behind Westwood Books, a short steep path leads up to Castlehaw, once the site of a motte and bailey Norman castle dating from the 11th century, now a good viewpoint. A short drive beyond the town is Fairfield Mill, a restored Victorian woollen mill which has heritage displays and exhibitions. Pay and display car park with adjacent toilets.
Travelling:Leave the car park and turn left on the one-way Main Street. Soon approach a T junction, turn sharp right and continue a short distance to a mini-roundabout where you take the first exit towards Dent. Beyond the town limits the road descends to cross the River Rawthey on a narrow bridge. Shortly, pass the local golf club and the road bears left into Dentdale valley. Continue along the valley road with beautiful views across surrounding fields, woodland, hills and the River Dee. The road is narrow in places and some care is needed. Eventually the road crosses the River Dee on a narrow bridge. Continue approx 0.7 miles to enter Dent village, the main car park is a short distance on the left.
Distance: 17.8 miles Location: Dent Village Coordinates: N 54.27835, W 2.45568
|Main Street, Dent village|
Refreshments can be obtained from The George & Dragon Hotel, The Sun Inn or Meadowside cafe, Dent Stores provides some provisions. Dentdale itself is a beautiful valley, with green fields and the meandering River Dee, all enclosed by high hills. There are various walks along the river or up the surrounding hills. Pay and display car park with adjacent picnic tables and toilet facilities.
Travelling:Leave the car park and turn right to retrace your steps down the valley for approx 0.6 miles before taking the first left turn for Barbon. The road starts to climb through the pretty hamlet of Gawthrop. Soon cross a small bridge and turn immediate left to Barbon. The narrow road ascends steeply out of Dentdale and soon passes over a summit and into Barbondale. The road gradually descends and there are wonderful views across the narrow open valley. Eventually the road joins Barbon Beck and there are various open grassy areas by the roadside where it is possible to park.
Distance: 22.2 miles Location: Barbondale Coordinates: N 54.24257, W 2.52481
Travelling:Continue down the valley road and after approx 1.5 miles take the first left turn towards Kirkby Lonsdale. The narrow open road gives good views across the Lune valley before crossing a cattle grid to a more enclosed section. Continue approx 1 mile to a T junction and turn right. Soon meet another T junction and turn left on the A683. Shortly, pass through the village of Casterton with The Pheasant Inn on the right. Beyond the village the road descends towards the River Lune and soon passes Devil’s Bridge and a small car park, often filled with motorbikes at weekends. At the following T junction turn right on the A65. Cross the river on a more modern bridge and the first right turn is more parking for Devil’s Bridge. Just beyond, take the right turn for Kirkby Lonsdale. Enter the town and Market Square car park is a short distance on the right. Further car parks are available up the hill opposite.
Distance: 27.7 miles Location: Kirkby Lonsdale Coordinates: N 54.20185, W 2.59654
Just outside the town is the famous Devil’s Bridge, a spectacular historic bridge over the River Lune and a popular gathering place for bikers. Adjacent is Jubilee Park, a good open area of grass with picnic tables and benches. From Devil’s Bridge you can follow the river upstream on a good footpath which eventually enters the town via some steep steps. Parking is free at Devil’s Bridge, pay and display in the town. Toilets at Devil’s Bridge and just off Market Square.
Travelling:Leave Market Square and head up the hill opposite on New Road. Soon pass two pay and display car parks on the left and take the left turn beyond the second one. Pass Booths supermarket on the right and approach a mini-roundabout. Take the second exit on the A65 towards Kendal. After only 0.2 miles, take the first left turn towards Burton. The narrow hedge lined road continues through pleasant farmland for approx 1.6 miles to a T junction where you turn right. The road, now briefly in Lancashire, climbs a short distance before passing a timber yard on the left with views towards Hutton Roof Crags on the right. Eventually, over a small summit the road starts to descend and the entrance to Plain Quarry car park is on the right.
Distance: 32.5 miles Location: Hutton Roof Crags & Dalton Crags, Plain Quarry car park Coordinates: N 54.17892, W 2.68776
|Limestone Pavement, Hutton Roof Crags|
Travelling:Leave the car park, turn right and descend through woodland. After approx 1.5 miles enter the outskirts of Burton-in-Kendal village and soon reach a T junction. Turn left on the A6070, then almost immediate right towards Yealand. The road soon crosses the M6 motorway, the Lancaster canal and the main west coast railway line in quick succession, between them providing vital transport links across North West England for over 200 years. Just beyond the railway on the right is Cinderbarrow miniature railway, only open Sundays and bank holidays between Easter and September but a great little attraction. Immediately beyond this is a T junction where you turn right on the A6. Continue approx 1 mile to pass a petrol station with small store and just beyond take the first left turn to Lakeland Wildlife Oasis on the left.
Distance: 36.8 miles Location: Lakeland Wildlife Oasis Coordinates: N 54.19400, W 2.75384
|Snow Leopards, Lakeland Wildlife Oasis|
Travelling:Turn right out of the car park and immediate left on the A6 towards Kendal. Soon pass the Kings Arms pub on the right then the remains of historic Beetham Hall on the left before entering the village of Beetham. Take the second left turn to the village, then immediate right which leads down a short dead end lane to Heron Corn Mill.
Distance: 38.4 miles Location: Heron Corn Mill Coordinates: N 54.21264, W 2.77482
|Inside Heron Corn Mill|
Travelling:Head back along the access lane and turn right at the end into Beetham village. The attractive village includes The Wheatsheaf Hotel, St Michael & All Angles Church and a post office shop with tea room. Continue beyond the village and climb on a narrow road through the hamlet of Slackhead. At the top of the hill take the first right turn towards Arnside. This wonderful limestone area, interspersed with woodland and fields, is within the Arnside & Silverdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Continue approx 1 mile to a T junction and turn right. Shortly, take the first right turn towards Arnside and continue approx 1.2 miles to cross a railway line and enter Arnside. After approx 0.6 miles, pass the railway station and roadside parking begins, continuing all along the promenade road.
Distance: 42.4 miles Location: Arnside Village Coordinates: N 54.20388, W 2.83102
The shape of the estuary and high tidal range mean the tide can come in very quickly which sometimes results in a small tidal bore. A siren warns of this event. The village is within the Arnside and Silverdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, an area with wonderful flora, fauna, limestone and coastal scenery. There are some great walks around Arnside, including along the shoreline or up Arnside Knott behind the village which provides superb views over Morecambe Bay. Free parking along the promenade and toilet facilities.
Travelling:Retrace your steps back past the railway station and take the first left turn to Milnthorpe on the B5282. Pass Carr Bank Garden Centre and soon the road bends sharply over the old railway line. The next section is a delight alongside the River Kent estuary. The road can actually flood during very high tides. There are fabulous views across the estuary and towards the hills beyond, best appreciated from the roadside parking along the first section. Soon enter the shoreline community of Sandside which contains the Ship Inn pub and Kingfisher restaurant overlooking the estuary. The road turns inland and soon crosses a bridge over the River Bela with views right of the impressive Dallam Tower house and estate. Shortly, enter Milnthorpe village and continue past Booths supermarket to the traffic lights. The pleasant Market Square is straight across from the lights and is worth a look. Otherwise, turn left at the traffic lights on the A6 towards Kendal. Climb out of the village and continue for approx 1.9 miles, past the village of Heversham, to Levens Hall on the left.
Distance: 48.2 miles Location: Levens Hall & Gardens Coordinates: N 54.25987, W 2.77526
|Levens Hall & Gardens|
Travelling:Exit Levens Hall car park and turn left on the A6. The road crosses the River Kent and soon passes under the A590 dual carriageway. Take the immediate right turn on slip road to A590 and Kendal. Join the A590 for approx 0.7 miles and take the minor left turn to Sizergh Castle. Shortly, pass the Strickland Arms pub and enter Sizergh Castle entrance. The car park is a short drive ahead.
Distance: 50.5 miles Location: Sizergh Castle Coordinates: N 54.27951, W 2.76822
Travelling:Retrace your steps back to the road entrance gate. A short detour left here takes you to Low Sizergh Barn, a popular farm shop. Otherwise continue past the Strickland Arms pub to the A590 and turn left. Immediately meet a roundabout and take the first exit to Kendal. Join the A591 dual carriageway for approx 1.5 miles and take the first exit to Kendal. Soon enter the outskirts of Kendal and continue through one set of traffic lights to the start of the one-way system by the river. Get in the right lane and continue approx 0.4 miles to the Town Hall where the road bears right down to the river again. Soon the road turns away from the river and Westmorland Shopping Centre car park is a short distance on the left.
Distance: 55.9 miles Location: Kendal, Westmorland Shopping Centre car park Coordinates: N 54.33013, W 2.74567