In total, there are over 40,000 lakes on the British Isles with many of them being world renowned, offering incredible views and scenic walks. And, despite popular opinion – they’re not all in the Lake District! In fact, Scotland and the East Coast of England boasts a wide range of truly beautiful lakes for you to visit.
With so many to choose from, it can be hard to know where to go so we’ve identified five different lakes, each offering something a little different for you. All that’s left for you to do is pick one!
Kielder Water might well be the UK’s largest artificial lake but it’s stunning views are very real indeed.
Surrounded by pine forests and heather moorland, there are a range of different walks and treks to capture different views. There are also woodland lodges that can be booked to make your stay extra special.
Situated in a ‘dark skies’ area, Kilder Water offers visitors an unforgettable chance to sit back and look at the stars over the lake setting.
A rambler’s paradise, Malham Tarn is a hefty 377 metres above sea level – making it one of Britain’s highest natural lakes.
The Tarn not only offers a fantastic circular walk around its edges, but also has the imposing cliffs of Great Close Scar close by. Sensible footwear and being aware of the weather conditions is a must as you’ll be surrounded by dense forest, peatlands and limestone craggs!
Campsites and caravan parks are dotted around the area – in addition to some fantastic traditional pubs.
No list of lakes would be complete without mentioning Loch Ness. This freshwater Loch is steeped in mythical legend of what might lurk beneath those deep waters. And they are deep – Loch Ness contains more water than all of the lakes in England and Wales combined!
Inverness and the Scottish Highlands provide the backdrop to what is still one of the most popular lakes in the UK. As you can imagine for a lake of this size, there are plenty of walks, attractions and places to stay – making a visit north of the border well worth it.
If a walk around the Loch isn’t for you, then make sure to take in one of the many boat rides – just keep your camera close by, as you never know what you’ll see!
Formed from a series of flooded sand and gravel pits, Swanholme Lakes sit within a local nature reserve that offers over 63 hectares of wildlife.
The Lakes have been declared a Site of Specific Scientific Interest meaning that some parts are off limits to visitors but this shouldn’t put you off as there is still a vast amount to see and do.
Access to the Lakes is via the Hartsholme Country Park, which is home to a fantastic visitor centre full of information about the wildlife living close by. There’s also a campsite to extend your stay, and a café serving tasty refreshments.
One of London’s favourite lakes, the Serpentine in Hyde Park was created back in 1730 and has a long and rich history of recreational use.
From open water swimming, pedalos and even a solar powered boat, the Serpentine offers something for everyone, even if it’s just a stunning backdrop for a picnic in the sun. The lake also features a number of cafés and restaurants to grab some refreshments if you haven’ packed your own.
For a change of pace when you’re finished at the lake, visit the Serpentine Galleries for a burst of contemporary art and architecture.