October - November 2005
Perfect Picture Postcard of Cumbria - the Lake District
Sketch of beautiful Lake Windermere
northwest region – Cumbria, is the second largest and the most
dramatic county in England with the Lake District National Park as
the main centre of attraction. The Cumbrian coastline has beauty of
its own with sandy beaches and small seaside resorts. There are seventeen
lakes in this area. The most visited lakes amongst these are Lake Windermere,
Coniston, Grasmere, Rydal Water, Derwentwater and Ullswater. Windermere
is England’s largest lake (17 Km long) and the most popular of
all lakes. A boat trip on this lake will show the beauty of small islands
and attractive shores lined with lush green woodlands under the backdrop
of low mountains. In fact, the lakeside scenery is breathtaking.
The region also has England’s highest peaks and scenic valleys
with few traditional settlements. The important villages and towns to
explore include Ambleside, Bowness, Coniston, Grasmere, Keswick and Windermere.
Bowness is now virtually merged with Windermere and has become a hub
for the tourists. The narrow streets are lined with Victorian stone and
St. Bees Head
Bees is a small village on the coast with sandy beaches. St.
Bees Head dominates the village. It is also a starting point for
the long distance walk from the western to the eastern coast.
Carlisle lies close to the Scottish borders. It is
a historic, stylish and vibrant city. It played an historic,
stylish and vibrant city. It played an important role in
shaping and developing English and Scottish history. Moreover,
during the occupation of Britain, the Romans established
themselves at Carlisle. The colourful history of the city
can be traced through its Castle – a border fortress,
the Tullie House Museum – illustrating both turbulent
and peaceful history, the Guildhall Museum – the oldest
building in town, and the Cathedral. Carlisle Cathedral,
built in red sandstone, has an interesting eastern window
with 14 century glass. The vaulted ceiling of the nave is
richly decorated and is very impressive.
Cockermouth’s main attraction
is a large Georgian country house with a
walled garden overlooking the banks of River
Derwent. William Wordsworth was born in this
house. The National Trust has recently renovated
it. The house is furnished and equipped with
period sights and sounds of the 18‑century.
It also contains many of Wordsworth’s
Grassmere vales and hills
a small picturesque village where Wordsworth lived in Dove Cottage
and wrote his great poems.
Keswick is a market town, which is situated besides
Derwent Water. It was once a centre of the graphite mining
industry, now illustrated in the well-known ‘Pencil Museum’.
Whitehaven is a small attractive harbour
town with a large marina. Most of the buildings
in town are painted in attractive pastel
Famous personalities: In literary
circles this area is sometimes referred to
as William Wordsworth’s District. He
was an adventurer, poet and writer. The natural
and outstanding beauty of the region inspired
him. Wordsworth was born in Cockermouth,
moved to Grasmere and then to Rydal Mount
near Ambleside. Another literary connection
to this place can be made with John Ruskin,
the author, art critic and social reformer.
He lived at Brentwood, on the shores of Coniston
Water. Of course, one more famous name associated
with this area is Beatrix Potter who wrote
tales and stories for children and illustrated
them with her own drawings and paintings.
She lived in Hawkshead village where there
is a small museum showing her original works.
Hadrian’s Wall, the longest
Roman landmark in Britain, was built with
numerous well-preserved forts and mile castles
en route, over a period between AD 120 – 128,
to mark the boundary of the Roman Empire
in a unique and distinctive way. The wall
passes through some of the most spectacular
scenery of the rolling fields, and quiet
villages of Lakeland. It is 73 miles long
and is a World Heritage Site, meaning that
it is on the same list of other ancient monuments
as the Taj Mahal and the Great Wall of China.
It has been said that the wall was built
to ‘separate the Romans from the Barbarians.’
Undoubtedly, there is a great deal in terms of natural scenic beauty
and interesting historic places in Cumbria for every one to experience
More articles by Bajrang Bahadur Mathur
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