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Cumbria Way - Self-Guided - 8 days

at a glance

Day 1 Arrive Ulverston -
Day 2 Ulverston to Lowick - 7.5 miles (12 kilometres)+ 1 extra mile (1.6 kilometres) to your accommodation
Day 3 Lowick to Coniston - 8.5 miles (14 kilometres) + 1 extra mile (1.6 kilometres) from your accommodation back to the trail
Day 4 Coniston to Great Langdale/Dungeon Ghyll - 12 miles (19 kilometres)
Day 5 Great Langdale/Dungeon Ghyll to Rosthwaite - 8 miles (13 kilometres)
Day 6 Rosthwaite to Keswick - 10 miles (16 kilometres)
Day 7 Keswick to Caldbeck - 16 miles (26 kilometres)
Day 8 Caldbeck to Carlisle - 15.5 miles (25 kilometres)
  • Grade: Grade 2

Standard Package Includes:

  • Total Distance - 77.5 miles (125 kilometres)
  • Holiday start date between 1st April and 30th September
  • Cicerone guidebook 
  • Harveys waterproof map
  • 7 Nights B&B En-Suite Room Basis
  • Price based on 2 people sharing a room
  • Luggage transfers
  • Emergency Telephone Support
  • Holiday Information Pack

Holiday Options:

  • Solo walker supplement - £381 (price includes single room supplement) please call to book
  • Single room supplement - £350
  • Transfer at the end of your walk back to Ulverston - £250 per group (up to 4 persons)
  • Additional Night at end of your trip - £125 Room Rate
  • Bring your dog - £152 (Subject to availability in selected hotels)
  • Bag for your dog - £126
  • GPS rental - £60

Cumbria Way -Self Guided - 8 Days

The Cumbria Way runs for 77 miles starting in Ulverston, running through the Lake District before ending in Carlisle city centre.

Created by the local Ramblers Association in the 1970s the route passes through classic Lakeland country via Coniston, Langdale, Borrowdale, Derwent Water, Skiddaw Forest and Caldbeck.

This is a primarily a low-level walk but it does contain some high-level exposed sections and even takes in one Wainwright fell on the route if you choose to as this is one of the alternative routes.

Even from the valley floors, the views are stunning. The Cumbria Way takes an easy route for the most part, allowing you to take in the sights without providing endless hills and summits to climb.

Your accommodation will be in well-appointed bed and breakfasts, inns and small family run hotels. Breakfasts are provided and evening meals can be taken in restaurants or pubs close to the accommodation. We book all your accommodation, take you to the start point, transfer your luggage and then provide you with maps and an itinerary for you to do the trails self-guided.

What better way to complete the Cumbria Way than by walking the trail at your own pace with this self-guided trip.


Day 1 - Arrive Ulverston
Day 2 – Ulverston to Lowick – 7.5 miles (12 km) +1 extra mile to your accommodation
Day 3 – Lowick to Coniston – 8.5 miles (14 km) +1 extra mile from your accommodation back to the trail
Day 4 – Coniston to Great Langdale/Dungeon Ghyll – 12 miles (19 km)
Day 5 – Great Langdale/Dungeon Ghyll to Rosthwaite – 8 miles (13 km)
Day 6 – Rosthwaite – Keswick – 10 miles (16 km)
Day 7 – Keswick to Caldbeck – 16 miles (26 km)
Day 8 – Caldbeck to Carlisle – 15.5 miles 25 km)


We can offer this as a dog friendly holiday (see supplements). There is a very limited choice of accommodations that accept dogs and these selected accommodations are at a premium price, and are subject to availability, therefore please call to check availability prior to booking.

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Day 1 Arrive Ulverston -

Arrive into busy market town of Ulverston for your first night’s accommodation.

Arrive by train for a leisurely start to your holiday and arrive at Ulverston train station.

If you arrive by car, you may be able to leave your car at your first night’s accommodation for the duration of your trip, subject to availability and charges. We will be able to better advise you of this when you book.  

Alternatively, park at Stockbridge Lane car park, with a 7-day permit to be purchased from the ticket machine.

Settle into your accommodation and perhaps enjoy a meal out in one of the restaurants or pubs in the area.

Day 2 Ulverston to Lowick - 7.5 miles (12 kilometres)+ 1 extra mile (1.6 kilometres) to your accommodation

The path officially starts at The Gill car park in the west of the historic town of Ulverston.

After climbing out of Ulverston you will be able to take in the beautiful views of Morecambe Bay to the south and, The Old Man of Coniston in the distance to the North.

A gentle walk through farms and fields past Stony Crag, through the small villages of Broughton Beck and Gawthwaite will take you to Kendall Ground where you will leave the trail to walk to your accommodation.

You will be staying in the vicinity of Lowick Bridge which is approximately a mile off the trail.


Day 3 Lowick to Coniston - 8.5 miles (14 kilometres) + 1 extra mile (1.6 kilometres) from your accommodation back to the trail

After re-joining the trail, you will start the day today with a gentle walk before a lovely descent to, the picturesque Beacon Tarn. 

You will then walk between Beacon Fell and Blawith Fells, along Mere Beck, where Coniston Water will beckon and duly deliver a charming walk along its banks, with the afternoon sun glistening on the mill pond.

About 1 mile from the Cumbria Way, adjacent to Coniston Water, is Torver, a small village in the valley beneath the Coniston Fells, which is the starting point for walkers heading to The Old Man of Coniston (one of the most popular fells in the Lake District) and Dow Crag, considered to be the best rock climbing crag in the Lake District, with over one hundred climbing routes.

After passing through some campsites along the shore of Coniston water you will arrive into the village for your overnight stay.

Day 4 Coniston to Great Langdale/Dungeon Ghyll - 12 miles (19 kilometres)

After a hearty breakfast, you will be ready for your day's walking. 

A steady climb alongside Yewdale Beck and up through Tarn Hows Wood, with a photo opportunity looking back at Coniston Water, before a pretty descent to the quaint Tarn Hows. Circumventing Black Fell and passing through Skelwith Bridge, en route to the splendid hamlet of Elterwater, taking its name from the nearby lake, is an ideal place for lunch and a chance to sample the delights of the Café.

An afternoon of easy walking via Chapel Stile and along Great Langdale Beck, will bring you to Great Langdale and The Old Dungeon Ghyll.

You will be able to relax, have an evening meal and then rest at your accommodation.

Day 5 Great Langdale/Dungeon Ghyll to Rosthwaite - 8 miles (13 kilometres)

After saying farewells to your hosts, you will have a gentle stroll along the foot of The Langdale Pikes, before a steep climb up Stake Pass, where you will be rewarded with a magnificent view when reaching the summit of the valley below. The descent of Stake Beck is good underfoot, walking on a neat light gravel track.

The remainder of today’s walk is adjacent to Langstrath Beck, meandering through the valley between Rosthwaite Fell and Sergeant’s Crag.  On reaching the base of High Crag, it is a walk along Stonethwaite Beck to your overnight accommodation, where the afternoon scones are highly recommended.

You will be staying in the vicinity of Rosthwaite this evening.

Day 6 Rosthwaite to Keswick - 10 miles (16 kilometres)

A pleasurable walk through the valley that divides Castle Crag and Grange Fell, adjacent to the River Derwent, leads to the hamlet of Grange. 

From Grange, it’s a short walk to Derwentwater and an easy, picturesque stroll through the woods that skirt the water’s edge.  About 7.5 miles along the walk, you will come across Lingholm Kitchen and Walled Garden, where Beatrix Potter stayed on several occasions, that may tempt you for lunch. As Oscar Wilde once said “The only thing I can’t resist is temptation”; we recommend you don’t either.

Tonight you will be staying in Keswick.

Day 7 Keswick to Caldbeck - 16 miles (26 kilometres)

The climb out of Keswick up towards Skiddaw is quite steep, before veering to the right and traversing along the side of Lonscale Fell, walking up the valley with Glenderaterra Beck below and heading towards Skiddaw House (the highest youth hostel in Britain).

Once at Skiddaw House take the eastern route (this is the more difficult route but shorter) following the River Caldew, past Carrock Mine and up to the summit of High Pike, where you will be rewarded with magnificent panoramic views.

An easy descent follows, over Low Pike, down into Calbeck and your accommodation, where a very warm welcome will be waiting.

Day 8 Caldbeck to Carlisle - 15.5 miles (25 kilometres)

Today you will leave the Cumbrian Fells with an easier day walking ahead, passing through woodlands and fields.

The initial part of the walk follows Cald Beck (from which the village takes its name), through Parson’s Park, over Oakbank Hill and through Dentonside Wood, towards Sebergham.

The remainder of the walk follows the River Caldew, through Buckabank and then Dalston.

With the riverbank to your right, you make your way into Carlisle, cross the river and make your way to the Market Cross which signifies the end of the Cumbria Way.

Congratulations! You feel should feel very proud you have completed the Cumbria Way.

At the end of the day's walking, it is just a short walk to Carlisle railway station.

Alternatively, we can transfer you back to Ulverston to pick your car up (see supplement).



(A) Bed and Breakfast accommodation (twin or double share basis).
(B) Route map, guidebook, and trip notes specific to your trip, including
emergency contact numbers.
(C) Luggage transfers between accommodations.
(D) Emergency back-up service from Shepherds Walks Holidays mobile telephone number.




(A) Any additional transfers not mentioned in the dossiers.
(B) Car parking for the duration of your trip.
(C) Personal clothing and equipment.
(D) Insurance
(E) Lunch and Evening meals.
(F) Single room option (if required, see single supplement)



The Shepherds Walks Representative will:

A) Be available should you have any problems during your trip
B) Arrange the transportation of your luggage.
C) Provide transfers as necessary to your car/station if specified in your booking or itinerary.

We are here to offer you the best holiday you could ever imagine and we aim to do this through the personal service that we offer.

Make your holiday run smoothly – We are here for you. Our sole objective is for us to help you. We are here at any stage of your holiday and even in the planning stages. We tailor things to your requirements, not those of the masses.

We don’t cut corners - We want to see you again and want you to speak highly of Shepherds Walks Holidays. This is why we are literally willing to go that extra mile. The information you receive at every stage will be clear and leave you asking no questions.

We have personally walked all the trips we offer - We know exactly what you are going to embark on and can advise you on any aspects of your holiday over and well above what many of our competitors can.

Press choose to walk with us – Shepherds Walks Holidays are asked to deliver a very high percentage of the trips for journalists in the region. When the Tourist Boards are approached by a journalist wanting to visit the area who do they ask to provide their holiday or take them out walking? Shepherds Walks.

We have had press trips on all our routes and the articles speak for themselves.

Protected Holiday - All our holidays are protected through the operation of a Trust Account.

We are close at hand if you need us – We are a local business and if you need us at any time during your holiday just ask. If you are on a self guided trip we often will catch up with you, even over a drink one evening, just to make sure everything is going well. It’s better to iron out any little problems during your holiday, rather than hearing about them when you are back at home.

We enjoy great relationships with your accommodation providers and they will help us to help you

As we are literally on the doorstep we know the best places to stay. Often we will have block booked the best accommodation the previous year. We want our customers to stay in the best possible accommodation. As we know the proprietors personally and we liaise with them regularly they will go that extra mile to help us to help you whilst out on your route.

That is why Shepherds Walks has won awards and has helped people relax and totally enjoy their visit to this wonderful part of the country. We are willing to go that extra mile!

On the Cumbria and Dales Way do I get a guidebook and map included.

Yes, on the Cumbria and Dales Way you will receive a guidebook as well as a map.

Will I be able to use my mobile phone.

Along the Dales Way you will find that there is a poor mobile phone signal for the first 2/3 of the trail.

You will be able to check your reception through your service provider's website. The sites will ask for a postcode or town – if you are unsure you could use one of the National Park Centre's postcodes.

Will I be able to get Wi-Fi in the accommodations.

Wi-Fi can be limited in the accomodations along the Dales Way.

What type of accommodation will we be staying in - self guided trip

The accommodation on the tours are in Inns, family-run hotels, and Bed and Breakfasts. We endeavour to provide en-suite accommodation.

Can I add an rest day into my walking holiday?

Yes you can at any point, just get in touch and we can discuss the best options for this trip.

What is a Double, Twin and Single room?

Room descriptions

Double – One double bed for two people.

Twin – Two single beds each for one person.

Single – A room with a single bed for sole occupancy. We do our best to reserve a double bedded room for sole occupancy where possible but if this is not available, then your room may have a single bed in it. 

What is the difference between a single supplement and a solo supplement?

The single supplement is only for those who require a single bedded room on a trip with other passengers in a group. This is because they are paying for a basic room rate. 
Our solo walker supplement is for the traveller who wants to travel alone and is to be added to the cost per person for each holiday. 

Sadly now all costs are based on 2 people sharing and so the solo walker has to burden this cost for both transfers and room rates. As this cost can be quite expensive, it may be worth looking to see if we offer a guided holiday, you could then opt for a single room, just paying the single supplement, making it a much cheaper option. 


So, the rule is: 

If you are travelling with other people and require your own bedroom, then select the single room supplement.

If you are booking your holiday on your own, then select the solo supplement.

What dates of the year can I book my holiday on?

Our holiday season runs from 1st April until the last day of September. You can book your holiday to start anytime during those dates. 

Holidays outside of those times are not possible as most accommodation providers will close during the winter months and the luggage transfer companies do not operate out of season.

Certain holidays, we may be able to accommodate out of season. Please contact us if you require an out of season holiday and we can help you with your request - 01669 621 044.

70th Birthday Challenge

Tuesday 27th September 2022 Mary Lane

I was looking to do something for my 70th birthday and came across an article in Countryfile magazine about the 70 mile Cumbrian Way Walk.

Shepherds Walk organised it all for me and were very helpful and encouraging, hotels ,transfers and taxis were all excellent.

Walking the Cumbria Way

Tuesday 26th October 2021 Susan Squires

It was helpful to leave a car at Mary’s Mount although parking on the road around there would have been safe too.

We liked Ulverston. It was full of restaurants and cafes which were all busy in the evening.

I would not like to do the walk without a GPS. In many places it isn’t well signed, or there are a multiplicity of paths and field gates.

We are both good walkers but found we were only walking at 2 mph rather than our usual 3 mph as we kept stopping to read the description in the book and check the track on my GPS. We had also assumed that most of the walk would be ok underfoot but we were taken aback by the tree roots alongside Coniston water, and the streams crossing our path at Langstrath.

Cumbra Way Highlights

Monday 27th September 2021 S Durant

Wonderful three days with varied landscape and terrain, including clambering up bucolic fields of sheep to the high fells where we were alone with superb views. The accommodation exceeded our expectations and the company dealt with a small issue regarding taxi times very promptly.

Thursday 4th July 2019 M Price

An excellent walk strenuous in places eg Keswick to Caldbeck. We really appreciated being able to split the Ulverston to Coniston section by staying at Lowick Bridge. All arrangements were very good with friendly comfortable accommodation,totally reliable baggage transfer, very informative pack at the start and a friendly taxi to get us back to the car from Carlisle to Ulverston. Thoroughly recommended.

Excellent walking holiday, all arrangements worked out very well.

Wednesday 3rd July 2019 M Price

Very friendly and personal, excellent literature before the holiday, encouraging pre and post walk contacts; felt that if any help had been needed it would have been prompt and appropriate.

Fantastic 5 days walking across some of the best countryside and views the UK has to offer

Wednesday 4th April 2018 Jonathan Cox

Such an enjoyable walk with some brilliant highlights:•Walking away from Ulverston for at least the first 6 miles and when looking back, still being able to see Sir John Barrow Monument overlooking Morecambe Bay as well as being surrounded in every field by newly born lambs•The walk from Coniston to Skelwith Bridge. Tarn Hows was amazingly still and picturesque and fortunate for us quiet and we set of early•Scrambling up Grainsgill Beck to Lingy hut. This was one of the most challenging parts of the walk but a change from regular tracks•Last day meander along the River Caldew towards Dalston. Once again we were surrounded by lambs and the occasional protective parent!

Great walk

Tuesday 6th December 2016 Andrew Graham

We did this walk early 2016 and really enjoyed it. The route varies so much and you pass through a wonderful part of the country.

Cumbria Way - Self-Guided - 8 days photo's

I was looking to do something for my 70th birthday and came across an article in Countryfile magazine about the 70 mile Cumbrian Way Walk.

Shepherds Walk organised it all for me and were very helpful and encouraging, hotels ,transfers and taxis were all excellent.

27th Sep 2022 - Mary Lane

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