Derwentwater, Lake District

Derwentwater, Keswick

Derwentwater lies close to the bustling market town of Keswick, providing a serene counterpoint to the town’s energetic atmosphere.

This sprawling lake, one of the principal bodies of water in the Lake District, is enveloped by a stunning backdrop of wooded slopes and towering fells.

Recreational Haven

One of Derwentwater’s most striking features is its adaptability to different forms of recreation. Whether you’re interested in kayaking, sailing, or simply floating along on a rowboat, the lake accommodates a variety of aquatic activities.

A Hill Walker’s Dream

The area surrounding the lake is a paradise for walkers. Popular routes like the ascent up Catbells offer spectacular views of Derwentwater and beyond.

For those looking for a less challenging experience, lakeside strolls provide a more relaxed pace without sacrificing the scenery.

Keswick Launch: Your Lake Guide

The Keswick Launch offers a convenient way to explore the lake, providing boat services that stop at several jetties around Derwentwater.

This gives visitors the freedom to hop on and off at various locations, perhaps combining a boat trip with a walk or a visit to some of the many points of interest around the lake.

Seasonal Attractions

Derwentwater is a lake for all seasons. Spring sees the emergence of bluebells and daffodils along the shore, while autumn turns the surrounding woodlands into a kaleidoscope of colour.

During winter, the area takes on a serene beauty, with snow-capped fells adding to the scenery.


The lake and its surroundings are rich in wildlife, from fish like pike and perch in its depths to birds such as ospreys and kingfishers that frequent the area. It’s not uncommon to spot red squirrels in the adjoining woodlands, making the lake a nature enthusiast’s haven.

The Theatre by the Lake

Adding a cultural dimension to Derwentwater’s natural beauty is Keswick’s Theatre by the Lake. With its repertoire ranging from classic plays to modern dramas, the theatre offers a unique combination of art and nature.

Friar’s Crag and Other Viewpoints

Among the numerous viewpoints around Derwentwater, Friar’s Crag is perhaps the most famous. This rocky outcrop provides one of the most iconic vistas of the lake and is a popular destination for photographers. Also noteworthy, are the views from the traditional stone-built Ashness Bridge.

Local Lore and Legends

Derwentwater is steeped in history and local myths. Stories of mythical creatures and local heroes add a layer of mystique to the lake, enriching the experience for those who delve deeper into its past.

Accessibility and Accommodation

Reaching Derwentwater straightforward, especially from Keswick, which offers a variety of accommodation options. Whether you prefer a traditional bed-and-breakfast, a modern hotel, or a cosy campsite, you’ll find something to suit your needs.

As is typical of the region, Derwentwater boasts stunning natural beauty, a myriad of recreational opportunities and a touch of cultural enrichment. Its close proximity to Keswick makes it one of the most accessible lakes in the area, yet its expansive landscapes ensure that you never feel crowded.


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