One thing I like about the Lake District is the variety of independent shops that can be found in its many towns and villages. Unlike big towns or city centres, Lakeland abounds with individual stores which often sell quirky items and stylish clothing and footwear. Of course, many also sell mass produced goods, but it is nice to see a choice of handmade products too.
Blenheim Lodge is located a mere 2-minute walk from the high street and closest shops. Bowness high street loops around into a rough ‘T’ shape. Our guest house sits parallel to the topside of the longer ‘T’ shaft. Thus, it is a quick walk downhill to the joint of the ‘T’ where a number of shops selling items ranging from crafts, footwear, and clothing can be found.
Alternatively, take a fork to the right as you walk down Brantfell Road, and go to the end of pretty Langrigge Drive, the gently sloping street that you can see on the map. At the end of Brantfell Road, where it joins with the main road, look any which way you like, and you will dozens of shops simply beckoning for your custom! Directly to the left is a shop selling all kinds of knick knacks, furniture, and other items for the home. Opposite the road can be seen a newsagents and shops selling cutesy items to remind you of the Lake District. Directly on the right is a store that sells leather and sheepskin jackets, men’s and ladies’ clothing and footwear, as well as wallets, handbags, gloves and other items.
Step out into the world of shopping in Bowness-on-Windermere! Stroll along the high street and you will see an eclectic selection of shops. There are high end jewellery stores such as Pandora (www.pandora.net/en-gb) and George Banks (www.georgebanks.co.uk); the usual mix of clothing shops, including a charity shop; and a drug store which sells practical necessities, such as shampoo, combs, toothbrushes, soap, and so on. There are some chain stores as I mentioned earlier, such as the Edinburgh Woollen Mill (www.ewm.co.uk) and Tog 24 (www.tog24.com). These latter two, like a few more others on the high street, sell warm clothing and outdoor gear, and are highly popular with visitors.
Bowness-on-Windermere is a ‘proper’ little place, not simply a holiday resort, although it is much loved by visitors for its holiday feel, with Lake Windermere a few short minutes’ stroll from the centre of town. Thus, the high street also boasts services ranging from florists, salons, internet cafes, restaurants, pubs, bistros, delicatessens, a bakery, a cinema, barbers, a bank, etc. A precinct off the high street is home to more shops as are a few more little lanes off the main high street in Bowness-on-Windermere, on one of which sits the Post Office.
On Glebe Road, just by the Lake, larger and more spacious stores abound, many of which sell outdoor related gear and other tourist kitsch. There are also, in this area, pubs, a nightclub, restaurants, a games arcade, and water vessel sales and maintenance services. Annual fairs are held on The Glebe through the year, when numerous little stalls spring up, selling all kinds of wares and services.
Thus, as you can see, Bowness is a great little place to base a holiday in when visiting the Lakes. Staying at Blenheim Lodge, our Victorian hilltop B&B, combines the best of both worlds by offering our guests a quiet and peaceful location with fabulous views that is just a short walk to the centre of Bowness town and the Lake. For those who like a little morning or evening constitution away from the madding crowd, we have The Dales Way and acres of pretty countryside next to the guest house, where you can exercise in a natural environment of fresh country air and scenic surroundings.
Hike to the viewpoints behind our Bowness B&B, and you will see why it has been worth your while when you gaze across the vast expanse of Lake Windermere to the valleys and fells beyond. For the less able, there are benches dotted along the way to avail yourself of, and more level trails that meander through lovely countryside make for equally picturesque walks. The romance of the place is encapsulated by the name of one of these routes: ‘The Poet’s Walk’.
‘Blenheim Lodge . . . panoramic Lake views, peace and tranquillity, nestled against acres of beautiful fields and woodlands, in the heart of the English Lake District National Park.’