Opening times for 4 December 2023
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Lots of steps up to Claife Viewing Station from Ash Landing car park and a slope from the Courtyard. Level route on lakeshore path of Windermere from Claife Viewing Station.
Accessible route and/or map
Junction 36 off M6, then take A684 which becomes the A591 to Windermere and Ambleside. B5285 from Windermere via Windermere ferry 3 miles. B5286 and B5285 from Ambleside 9 miles. B5285 from Coniston 8 miles.
Parking: Ash Landing, very near Claife Viewing Station and Harrowslack, on Windermere's west shore,
Come over from Bowness as a foot passenger on the Windermere ferry. Many footpaths in the area; walk from Hill Top, Near Sawrey or down the west shore path from Wray Castle.
Windermere 3 miles via ferry.
Get the cross Lakes shuttle from Windermere train station, via Claife Viewing Station to Hawkshead. www.mountain-goat.co.uk Shuttle service currently suspended
4 mile lakeshore track suitable for mountain bikes from Wray Castle to Claife Viewing Station. You can take your bike on the ferry across Windermere or on the Bike Boat from Brockhole, in the summer. Services currently suspended.
Windermere car and passenger ferry; Ferry House to Ferry Nab, just four minutes walk to Claife Viewing Station.
Windermere Lake Cruise Boat
Shuttle service from the heart of Bowness village to the western shore of Windermere (April - October): https://www.windermere-lakecruises.co.uk/cruises-fares/bowness-to-ferry-house-cross-lakes-shuttle
Bring your dog to Claife Viewing Station and Windermere West Shore. With lakeside and woodland walks, it’s a great place for you and your four-legged friend to explore.
Claife Viewing Station
Viewing platform built in 1790 for the first tourists to the Lake District with panoramic views framed by coloured glass.
Windermere West Shore
Gentle walks along the west shore of England's biggest lake, with mountain views and lakeshore access.
Joey's Café (not National Trust)
Courtyard café serving baked goods, savoury snacks, locally roasted coffee, teas and hot chocolate.
With long lakeside and woodland walks, Claife Viewing Station and Windermere West Shore is a great place for you and your four-legged friend to explore.
Claife Viewing Station offers endless lake views surrounded by lakeside strolls, longer bike rides and wildlife in the woodland. Leave the car behind and make the most of your trip.
Enjoy a relaxing lakeshore walk through woodland and parkland on this linear trail, taking in views of the islands of Windermere and the Victorian Gothic Wray Castle
Challenge yourself with a walk along Windermere's undeveloped western side and discover some of the Lake District's most dramatic views. Here you can find a café and toilets before heading back to the car park.
Joey’s Café at Claife Viewing Station serves as a cosy pit-stop for those walking up to the station or setting out along the west shore. Will it be a slice of freshly baked cake or a frothy coffee?
Sitting on the western shore of Lake Windermere this first floor apartment is a cosy retreat.
This comfortable lakeside retreat on the west shore of Windermere has its own jetty directly outside the cottage.
A two-bedroom lakeside retreat on the shores of Windermere with its own jetty.
Lakeside or mountain-view pitches for tents and campervans, along with pre-pitched tents and pods, on Windermere, England’s biggest lake.
A cosy house in the old kitchen garden of Wray Castle with views of stunning scenery all around.
A two-bedroom cottage just above Tarn Hows with heaps of character in the heart of the Lakes.
The western shore of Windermere is perfect for a car-free adventure. Why not travel over on the ferry from Bowness? In less than 15 minutes you’ll arrive on the tranquil west shore.
From here you can discover Claife Viewing Station. Less than a five-minute walk from the ferry, stroll through the courtyard and up to the viewing platform, where you can admire panoramic views of Windermere through coloured panels and listen out for the Aeolian wind harp on a blustery day. Learn about the building’s colourful history and relax in the quaint café in the courtyard, then explore Ash Landing Nature Reserve just down the road, where you can wander through the woodland and stumble across pockets of wildflower meadows.
If you’re feeling more adventurous, set out on the 4-mile lakeshore path which leads to Wray Castle. Whether you are on foot or bike, this gentle, linear route is great for the whole family. You can return to Bowness or Ambleside on the boat from Wray Castle or Bark Barn, or refuel in the castle's café and retrace your steps back to the ferry.
Discover how the viewing station was one of the first purpose-built monuments to entice early tourists to enjoy the views across Lake Windermere.