For an eventful short break, there’s always something to do in Kendal, Lake District.
Food and Drink
Kendal Mountain festival
Kendal Tourist Information
Kendal Town Football Club
Much more than just a Café! Buffets, Weddings, Outside catering, Wilf’s Away’ and Venue for hire for all occasions. The café in Staveley provides good food in a tranquil, riverside setting with decking overlooking the River Kent.
Bootleggers Bar Kendal – a town centre bar, passionate about live music, catering for all tastes, both musical & liquid. They proudly offer real ales, live music, pool, darts and bar snacks. Cumbria’s Most Prestigious Music Venue. Live music every Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, interspersed with ticketed gigs throughout the year, there is something to suit everyone. For those who love to dance, a DJ every Saturday night.
The Brewery Kendal is only a 11 minutes walk (0.6 miles)or 3 minutes drive (0.8 miles) from the Sonata Guest house. It’s one of the leading arts centres in the UK, presenting a year round programme of exciting, diverse, top quality events and performances, exhibitions in all artforms including the Kendal cinema. The bar and restaurant specialises in superb cask ales from around the UK.
Westmorland Beer Festival is held in Kendal Town Hall and a chance to try the likes of Shepherd Neame’s Bishops Finger (a representative from Britain’s oldest brewery), and Special Ale – a beer from a young maverick brewer called Black Sheep. This 2014 year aiming to provide about 55 beers and 15 ciders with beer tasting sessions with chocolate, cake, coffee and cheese, looking at the pairing of particular beer styles.
The Black Swan 8 All Hallows Lane, Kendal, LA9 4JH holds the Cask Marque Award for serving great quality real ale. It’s also one of the earliest recorded inns in the town. A map of Kendal dated 1611, clearly shows an inn on the site.
The Globe Kendal 8 Market Place, Kendal, LA9 4TN provides a wide range of brilliant, Cask Marque accredited beers and you can enjoy your favourite pint with a meals – guests say chips are nice!
Davenports stock fashions for a range of lifestyles and ages from smart-casual to formal and offers a very personal service in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere.
Kendal’s market charter dates back to 1189 and is the oldest known in Cumbria and the Lake District and each month a small Farmers Market is held in Market Place.
Kendal Market takes places every Wednesday and Saturday, from 8.00am to 4.30pm. There is also a farmer’s market on the last Friday of the month (at the time of writing).
Whilst shopping try some Kendal Mint Cake, known to mountaineers and explorers for its high energy. There are three companies that still produce Kendal mint cake in Kendal from a secret recipe of sugar, glucose, water and peppermint oil. Sir Edmund Hillary and his team carried Kendal Mint Cake with them on the first successful ascent of Mount Everest in 1953 and they are available from Aireys of Kendal, a 4 minute walk from the Sonata B&B Guesthouse.
If you look to your left as you leave the guesthouse you will see St Thomas’ Church, next to which is a foot path to Nobles Rest public park – it’s hardly visible from the busy main street and has been described as Kendal’s best kept secret. It’s a pleasant grassed area with trees and floral beds donated to the town by Mary Ellen Noble in 1929 as a “place of rest for the aged and young to enjoy” and is a favourite for lunchtime breaks, picnics and quiet strolls.
The river Kent is one of the fastest flowing spate rivers in the country contains brown trout, salmon and sea trout. There is free fishing through the centre of Kendal from Stramongate Bridge to Nether Bridge except by the weir. Otherwise in Kendal, the Kent Angling Association have the fishing rights for other stretches of the water, permits available from Carlson’s Fishing Tackle.
If you would like to learn how to cast with the fly rod or how to fly fish or even improve your techniques. Instruction is normally on a one-to-one basis but can be a group of up to 8 friends. All equipment is provided if required.
There are some unusual things to do in Kendal Lake District. A good waller can balance a structure that will last for centuries. It takes a certain type of mind, your probably very good at packing the car when you go on holiday or the dishwasher! Great for professional or amateur landscaped gardeners. The course centre is located 20 minutes away by car from Sonata B and B.
Delicious artisan bread, gingerbread and chocolate brownies and a popular breadmaking course.This is a very “hands on” course and everyone will bake at least four loaves to take home! Courses are held on Sundays and run from 10 am to 4.30 pm with a break for lunch.
Kendal is heightec’s flagship centre launched in 1997 offering height safety and rescue training courses. The Sonata Guesthouse is located close to town giving easy walking access to bars and restaurants, yet only 1.5mile/5-6 minute drive away from the Heightec facility.
The Lakeland Climbing Centre offers superb indoor and outdoor rock climbing experiences and is Cumbria’s premier climbing centre with the tallest indoor climbing wall in the country and the finest bouldering walls in the Lake District and North West of England.
The garden at Levens Hall is the world’s oldest topiary garden. There are over 100 species of plant, all of which have been clipped and pruned to perfection. This year, some of the most striking designs include chess pieces, peacocks, jugs of ale, umbrellas and even a judge’s wig, and begonias, pansies and daisies provide splashes of colour. Each winter, a team of four gardeners spend six months snipping the plants into shape, and the majority of the trees look exactly as they did when the gardens opened in 1694.
Sizergh Castle has a 1,600-acre estate sitting amid an agricultural landscape so take time to visit the great farm shop and the pub, the Strickland Arms. There are a local walks with impressive viewpoints of the Cumbrian fells and the sands of Morecambe Bay.
Kendal Castle, which stands guard over the town of Kendal, was built by an early Baron of Kendal and eventually inherited by the Parr family. Catherine Parr (1512-48), the daughter of Sir Thomas Parr and Maud Green, became the sixth wife of King Henry VIII. Queen Catherine is reputed to have been born at the castle in 1512 and her prayer book is kept on display at Kendal Town Hall. By 1572, the castle had fallen into a sad state of disrepair, it was acquired for the town in 1896 to mark the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria and is currently in the care of English Heritage. An exhibition at Kendal Museum tells the fascinating history of the castle and its inhabitants.
Airport Taxis Kendal
Blue Star Taxis
Established over 25 years ago, Blue Star Taxis of Kendal is manned 24 hours a day Thursday through to Sunday and 20 hours a day Monday through to Wednesday. Phone:01539 723670
Kendal Golf Club, the Heights, Kendal, Cumbria LA9 4PQ. Phone: 01539 733708
Carus Green Golf Course & Driving Range, Burneside Road, Kendal, Cumbria LA9 6EB. Phone: 01539 721097
Beckside (Crook) Golf Course, Ellerbeck Farm, LA8 8LE Crook, Cumbria. Phone: 01539 821415.
This less known little course owes much of its appeal to its unusual background; nearly 20 years ago, Mike Jackson, who farms the land, became fascinated by golf and created a nine-hole course on some uneven rough grazing land! Guests have told us its challenging.
Kendal Golf Driving Range, Oxenholme Rd, Kendal, Cumbria LA9 7HG. Phone: 01539 733933
Mountain Goat Tours & Holidays, Victoria Street, Windermere, Cumbria, UK, LA23 1AD. If you let us know, we will be happy to arrange a tour for you. The ‘Ten Lakes Spectacular’ includes a Lake cruise or the ‘High Adventure’ tour of the Western Lakes includes a Ravenglass & Eskdale train ride and entrance to Muncaster Grounds. The 2014 year prices are £40 for an adult and £38.50 for a senior citizen. We can book for you at no extra charge and try whenever possible to arrange a pick-up in Kendal free of charge.
Kendal has a sea climate which is influenced by the Gulf Stream and constant blowing sea breezes which moderate temperatures. Kendal and the Lake District are among the wettest areas in England. About 2,000 millimetres of annual rain can be recorded here. Rainfall is evenly spread out over the year with a small peak during autumn.
The Sonata Guest House offers free local spa passes – great for a rainy day!
“Sunshine is delicious, rain is refreshing,
wind braces us up, snow is exhilarating;
there is really no such thing as bad weather,
only different kinds of good weather.”
– John Ruskin (1819 – 1900)
The Sonata offers guests that book directly, free use of the Kendal Sanctuary Spa at the riverside hotel kendal, which is a short 10 minute walk away. Usual facilities include a small 10m swimming pool (1.35m deep), a spa pool with relaxing bubbles and water jets, a steam room and sauna as well as a fitness suite with treadmills, bikes, rowers and cross trainers and a small free weight area. The normal opening times are M-Thurs 7am-10pm, Fri 7am-9pm and weekends 8am-8pm. Let us know on arrival if you wish to use the facility.
Also available within a 5 minute walk from the Sonata Guest House, is Emma Gills (fully qualified Sports Therapist (Level 5 Advanced Diploma in Clinical Sports Therapy) t: 07771 692808. Latest 2015 rates for Sports and Remedial Massages are £35 / 60 minutes.
Kendal tourist information
Kendal Tourist Information Centre @ Made in Cumbria, 25 Stramongate, Kendal, LA9 4BH
Tel: 01539 735891. If you are seeking more information about things to do in the lakes, the Tourist Information Centre is only a 10 minute/0.5 mile walk away.
The Sonata Guesthouse is located within a 10 minute walk from Kendal railway station.
We love travelling on trains and are listed on ‘Station-Stays‘, which is a directory of quality overnight accommodation within walking distance of a British or Irish railway station.
Kendal Town Football Club
Kendal Town Football Club also known as ‘The Mintcakes’ were originally established in 1919 as Netherfield AFC by employees of the K Shoes factory. In 2000 with the Netherfield site now a shopping complex (K Village), the club changed it’s name to emphasise it’s relationship with the town.
Kendal Town Football Club, Parkside Road, Kendal, Cumbria LA9 7BL. Telephone: 01539 727472
Kendal Rugby Club
on 25th August, 1905 Kendal Rugby Union Football Club was born. Entering a Centenary year and the beginning of the next 100 years!Kendal Hornets RUFC, Mint Bridge, Shap Road, Kendal LA9 6DL. Tel: 01539 734039
Kendal mountain festival
Kendal Mountain Festival is the biggest and most diverse event of its type in the world with a vision is to inspire more people to explore, enjoy and represent mountains, wilderness and their cultures. It hosts a highly respected international film competition, a lecture programme of guest speakers, filmmakers and athletes and crucially it’s the UK’s top social gathering for outdoor enthusiasts.
A 7 minute/2.8 mile drive from the Sonata Guest House, along Appleby road to SATNAV post code LA8 0DA to start a walk up Hay Fell with two splendid tops; the cairned one is 1043ft/319m with good views of Kendal below and a panorama of Langdale Pile and Helm and Howgills stretching away on either side. The summit of Hay Fell is named Benson Knott – also visible from our bedroom 4! (Due to lack of car parking at the start of Benson Knott, our usual recommendation for guests is instead to climb Scout Scar).
Scout Scar is the subject of a chapter of Wainwright’s book The Outlying Fells of Lakeland. It reaches 764ft/233m and Wainwright’s anticlockwise recommended route also includes Cunswick Scar at 679 feet (207 m).
Scout Scar and Cunswick Scar dip gently towards the east with a steep western scarp slope. There is a shelter, locally known as “The Mushroom”, at the summit of Scout Scar. Alternatively you can drive to Scout Scar car park (use the Underbarrow road postcode LA8 8HB for SATNAVs, but the car park is actually 0.75km beforehand, so look out to your right as you approach your destination). Leave the car park, turn right, cross over and enter onto the Scar through the metal kissing gate. Once through the gate, the path leads off diagonally to the right.
The Lake District National Park Authority describes it as “A short, steep walk to one of the best views across the entire southern lakes”.
Further afield, things to do in the Lake District:-
The Lake District, created five hundred million years ago by volcanic activity and sculpted by ice, is also the wettest place in England. It’s the rain, which makes it so green! Covering 885 square miles, it is also the most mountainous with 100 peaks over 2,000 feet and 16 lakes.
If you wish to travel by bus (stagecoach), a 1 Day Adult North West Explorer ticket is priced at £10.80 for unlimited travel on all our services in Cumbria & North Lancashire. *price correct on 28/06/15 (Stagecoach Customer Services t:01228 400 466).
The world famous Ullswater Steamers have operated on England’s most beautiful lake, Ullswater, for over 150 years. The lake cruises run from Glenridding and Pooley Bridge with a stop off in Howtown on the Eastern shore of the lake. They run throughout the year and The National Trust are working in partnership with Ullswater Steamers to build a new jetty on Aira Green in 2014 which will allow you to leave your car behind at Glenridding and enjoy a cruise up Ullswater and a walk around Aira Force, before returning to Glenridding either by steamer or by foot – indeed a walk from Howtown back to Glenridding is one of the Lake District’s most attractive waterfront meanders.
Aira Force nearby, is probably the most famous of the Lake District waterfall, with a fall 70 feet from below a stone footbridge. After a walk along this part of Ullswater, Wordsworth wrote the famous poem ‘I wandered lonely as a cloud’. We can provide maps/guides for this wonderful drive, cruise and walk.
Country Lanes Lake District Cycle Hire Centre by Windermere railway station. Trek cycle hire equipment, mountain bike hire, cycle and walking tours, route advice and maps of rides along the shore of Windermere to Hawkshead or on the Trail of Beatrix Potter!
UK’s largest cycle store in the picturesque village of Staveley between Kendal and Windermere, With over 400 bikes on display, mountain biking skill courses, professional bike fitting service and cycle hire.
NOTE: Sorry, but we have no secure bicycle storage, only railings at the front of the guesthouse.
Walks – Tarn hows, Coniston
Set over 600ft in the hills above Coniston, you can drive up the narrow B-road to its top, park up then walk the 1.5 mile circular pathway, which takes about half-an-hour. The walk shows off the best of the Lake District’s mountains for minimum effort. Tarn Hows is three tarns joined into one with views of the Langdale Pikes mountain range. Beatrix Potter bought Tarn Hows in 1929 before bequeathing it to the National Trust. With a big car-park and a well-maintained circular path, there are seats along the way making it suitable for everyone. Nearby postcode for SatNav LA22 0PP – the actual car park is about 1 mile further along.
Walks – Catbells
Catbells is an excellent introduction to the pleasures of fell walking. It is situated on the western shore of Derwent Water within 3 miles (5 km) of Keswick town. The starting postcode for SATNAV CA12 5UE and the walk should take 2-3 hours giving great panoramic views.
Walks – Dales Way
After having walked 20 miles Dent/Burneside along the Dales Way, a 5 minute taxi ride from St Oswald Church, Burneside to the Sonata Guest House, Kendal may come as a well deserved relief! A local metered taxi firm is Blue Star taxis tel 01539 723 670 and the cost is approximately £5. If you opt to walk the 1.8 miles to Kendal it will take about 40 minutes along the road, otherwise check bus nr. 45 timetable – scheduled hourly Mon-Fri (yr2015).
Useful SatNav Postcodes
(Please don’t rely just on your Sat Nav, as the quickest way may not be suitable for your vehicle. One way systems and road layouts sometimes change, so please always follow local directions and signs)
Aira Force – CA11 0JS
Ambleside – LA22 9BU
Bassenthwaite – CA12 4QH
Bowness-on-Windermere – LA23 3HJ
Buttermere – CA13 9UZ
Catbells (from Gutherscale) – CA12 5UE
Coniston Village – LA21 8DU
Elterwater – LA22 9HP
Glenridding on Ullswater – CA11 0PA
Grasmere – LA22 9PZ
Hawkshead – LA22 0NS
Keswick – CA12 5DQ
Loweswater – CA13 0RU
Patterdale – CA11 0NW
Pooley Bridge – CA10 2NP
Ravenglass – CA18 1SG
Seatoller- CA12 5XN
Staveley – LA8 9LN
Troutbeck – LA23 1PF
Wasdale Head – CA20 1EX
Windermere – LA23 1AH