Where is this walk?

South shores of Windermere

July 26, 2017

Finsthwaite is a pretty village on the south shores of Windermere. It is the highlight of a short walk which struggles to find its way on the section closest to the lake.

The Walk

Walking along the south shores of Windermere can be a frustrating business unless you know where to go. Large hotels, marinas and private land encase much of the shoreline and not particularly walker friendly. However there is a a pearl to be found in the form of the little village of Finsthwaite and the walk up to High Dam. Popular in the summer but empty whenever I have visited. The waters of High Dam used to feed Bobbin Mill in Finsthwaite (now open as a visitor attraction).

The lands around Finsthwaite offer an excellent walk. The woodland of Great Knott Wood and Wintering Park particularly attractive as are the views back to Finsthwaite from the south. The circuit of Finsthwaite can be improved further by joining the Nature Walk from the Swan Hotel; alternatively take the Lakeside and Haversthwaite steam railway which stops just upstream from the Swan (timetable here) or walk away from the shore on a path next to the road under Summer House Knott.


It is not now possible to cling to the shoreline from the Lakeside Hotel. It is best follow the road until reaching a footpath which skirts the woodland on the north west side of the road. The path stays close to the road and when it ends you are nearly opposite Lakeside and the Aquarium. Have an explore.

Navigation Tips on Windermere

The Lakeshore path has become a victim of private ownership. There used to be a permissive path (open by permission of the land owner) but that has now been taken away. Permissive path are increasingly appearing on O/S maps (marked by orange dashes) and they can usually be relied upon. However they are not 100% reliable like the green dashes of a public right of way (open by law).

  • Philippa says:

    Hi Jonathan, is this route still open in 2017 as far as you know (looking at the comment thread)?

    • Jonathan says:

      Ther land at Landing How is still private. Yes it is possible to get back to the road but it does involve a crossing of the rail line. Best to either take the railway for 1 stop or walk the road. Away from the lake is lovely!

  • Kathy says:

    The route you have suggested goes through private property at Landing How which is not a public footpath. Can I suggest you take off the reference to going through this land and also change the picture of the map route.

  • Pat Read says:

    We tried to walk the recommended shoreline walk from the Swan Hotel’s nature trail to Lakeside. Unfortunately, the trail ends at a barbed wire fence , and to climb over it puts you on the railway line. We failed to see a clear route through.

    • Jonathan says:

      There used to be style parallel to the railway leading in to the woods – this has clearly fallen n to disrepair so it is probably best to stick to the road from the Swan Hotel or else grab the train from the station near the Swan!I will check next time I am near.

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