This section of the page features an image gallery, so if you're using a screen reader you may wish to jump to the main content.

Notice: Our cafe in the courtyard at Claife is now open. Work continues on the Viewing Station building and access is restricted. The work is due to be complete by the end of September.

Classic south Lakeland countryside with views of the fells and lakes

The western shore of Windermere is perfect for a car-free adventure for all the family. Why not travel over on the ferry from Bowness? In less than 15 minutes you’ll leave the busy eastern shore behind you and arrive at the naturally beautiful west shore.  

From here you can discover the mystical heights of Claife Viewing Station and learn about its colourful history.

The Station courtyard is perfect for picnics followed by a gentle wander up the slope where you’ll be rewarded with panoramic views of Windermere, at the top.

Claife Viewing Station is also the best place to set out on the 4-mile lake shore track, that leads you north towards Wray Castle. This gentle, linear route is great for exploring on bikes or foot. You could make the journey into a loop by returning to Bowness and Ambleside on the boat from Wray Castle or Bark Barn, or, refuel at the café at Wray Castle and re-trace your steps back to the Ferry.


Fresh cakes at Claife

Freshly made cakes on offer every day at Claife

After you have explored the Viewing Station, why not treat yourself to fresh tea, coffee and cake at our café.

The café has a rural feel, with a slate floor and log burner. It will be open all year round, with fresh baking, drinks and ferryman's lunches on the menu. Wet dogs and muddy boots welcome! 

The Viewing Station

We're working hard to re-open this 19th-century, popular tourist attraction. Back in the 1800s Claife Viewing Station was 'the' place to go in the Lake District. It's our aim to recreate part of the experience at this fascinating site and be fully re-open this autumn.

Ranger Tales