Sarah Nelson’s Grasmere Gingerbread Shop, Grasmere

I was recommended this as the best gingerbread in the world, but that’s not just it. The smell that wafts out of the door of the shop is sure to evoke memories of childhood baking. Then inside there are assistants in frilly aprons and mop caps that just continue that almost festive feel (admittedly somewhat helped by the gingerbread). The gingerbread itself… is unlike any gingerbread I’ve had before, both crumbly and chewy with that perfect gingery heat that “warms the cockles of your heart” (as someone somewhat older than myself would say), all wrapped up in a gloriously old-fashioned greaseproof paper packet for about £3 a pack (6 pieces). They also sell a range of other unique products, from traditional Cumbrian rum butter and ginger marmalade to handcreams, all at reasonable prices, perfect for an interesting souvenir or Christmas present. G.

Check out their online store.


Lake Road Inn, Keswick

This is definitely one of my favourite places to eat in Keswick. A small pub with a really cosy alpine atmosphere, hearty food, and fairy lights. There’s also a beer garden for the (occasional) proper summer days. We had the Cumberland sausage (a local delicacy) and the steak pie, (both sensibly priced around £10) portion sizes are perfect for the hungry walker. The pizzas are also pretty good, more American style than Italian, but you definitely get value for money as we both struggled to finish. I just wish I had space for the dessert! G.

Check out the menu.

Little Chamonix Cafe, Keswick

We visited this friendly, chalet-inspired cafe for coffee. Definitely planning to return as there is a good selection of local produce and home-cooked dishes from scones to Cumberland sausage and Lake District cheese. It appears to be a particularly good place to visit for brunch or lunch. The decor is clean and contemporary and the hosts honed their skills chalet hosting in the French alps. An additional touch was a sign noting that the flowers on the tables (and occasionally the vegetables) were from Dad’s garden “Thanks Dad”. E

Poppi Red’s Tea Room

We loved Poppi Red’s in the beautiful village of Hawkshead and so did the group of cyclists eating cakes on the terrace. The tea room is cosy and cute with friendly staff. I had a local speciality, teabread with Wensleydale cheese, and G had coffee and walnut cake. I can’t wait to go home and try cheese with my own Earl Grey Teabread. The coffee was good and served quickly. A range of filled rolls and paninis are available for around £6.50. Other specialities include cinnamon toast, hot crumpets with melted cheese and Westmorland chilli chutney and three cheese ploughmans. Homemade soups, such as butternut squash and sweet potato are available.. We’d like to return in the winter to Christmas shop in the gift shop and try the hot chocolate with rum and Bailey’s coffee.  E

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