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Bus & Boat Ticket (Explorer Zone)

Combine unlimited bus travel with a trip on the lake

For a great day out why not explore The Lake District by bus and boat?

This convenient ticket gets you a single boat journey on our red cruise from Bowness Pier to Waterhead Pier (Ambleside) or vice versa, plus unlimited bus travel in the surrounding area. Why not enjoy the beautiful Lakeland scenery from the open deck of a steamer on Lake Windermere and then hop on the famous open-top 599 bus from Waterhead Pier (Ambleside) back to Bowness?

Warning Image

🎫 You can't buy this ticket online, simply buy it from your bus driver when boarding your Stagecoach bus.

This ticket gets you unlimited Stagecoach bus travel in the South Lakes and North Lancashire area (see basic map below). For a ticket that includes bus travel just in the central lakes zone, please see our Central Lakes Zone ticket information.

Simple map illustrating the routes available on this bus and boat explorer ticket

Cumbria area covered by the Explorer Zone Bus and Boat Ticket

  • For a more detailed map and bus route information, please see the full route map (PDF file, 2Mb) - please note that the Explorer Zone area covers the whole of this map.

Timetables

Additional Information

  • For boat sailing times please see the red cruise section of our website

  • We're sorry, but this ticket cannot currently be booked online. Please purchase your ticket on any Stagecoach bus service or at our piers.

  • Valid for unlimited travel on all Stagecoach services across the North West.

  • Use on all services in Cumbria as far as Dumfries on the 79 and Newcastle Upon Tyne on the 685 (excluding Arriva 685 journeys - buy a paper North West megarider Gold to use on Arrive 685 journeys).

  • Use on all services in Lancashire as far as Ingleton (80), Blackpool (42/61/68), Blackburn (59), Bolton (125), Chester (1/2), Wigan (113).

  • Not valid on Chester City Sightseeing, Chester Park & Ride, school services S1/940/941/942 or Stagecoach in Manchester services.

  • Valid at all times.

Combine bus travel and a boat journey in one convenient ticket

Combine bus travel and a boat journey in one convenient ticket

Additional Information

Service Status

green


🔴 RED CRUISE Bowness ↔ Ambleside Waterhead✔️ Services OK
🟡 YELLOW CRUISE Bowness ↔ Lakeside

✔️ Services OK

🔵 ISLANDS CRUISE

Bowness → Windermere Jetty (Museum) → Bowness

✔️ Services OK
🚤MOTOR BOAT HIRE from BownessBowness Beach Hire Point ONLY

✔️ Services OK

🚤 MOTOR BOAT HIRE from Waterhead Waterhead Hire Point (nr. Ambleside Pier)✔️ Services OK


🕑: We are now running to our winter timetable. More routes and services available after Easter 2024.

Map of boat route

Load Map

Access and Facilities

♿ Disabled Access

Four different types of vessels operate our services with varying accessibility.

  • ♿ MV Swift - (marked with a green wheelchair icon on our timetables): our most accessible vessel - step-free access from pier to indoor/outdoor seating & accessible toilet
  • ♿ 'Steamers' MV Swan/Teal - (marked with black wheelchair icon on our timetables) - step-free access from pier to indoor/outdoor seating. Toilets down steep steps.
  • ❌ 'Steamer' Tern & modern launches like Miss Cumbria/Miss Lakeland - are not recommended for customers with limited mobility
  • ❌ Traditional wooden launches like Queen of the Lake - are not recommended for customers with limited mobility

Please visit our Accessibility section for more information.

Wheelchair users are strongly advised to call us to confirm which vessel is operating on which service, particularly in poor weather conditions. As on rare occasions, the vessels operating each route can change.


Upgrade this cruise

Why not get unlimited boat travel on the day too? Choose a Freedom of the Lake ticket for unlimited boat travel.

Freedom Of The Lake ®

Freedom Of The Lake ®

Unlimited boat travel for 24 hours on all routes | ⚓ See the full lake on this ticket: Lakeside ↔ Bowness ↔ Ambleside in 🕘 over 3 hours

Upgrade Book Now