Explore the wildlife of Windermere with a Discovery Cruise
Discovery Cruise has now ended for Summer 2017We'll be back in July 2018. The information below is for reference only.
Families can uncover some of Windermere’s hidden wildlife wonders this summer, with a series of ‘Discovery Cruises’ on England’s longest lake.
At 10.5 miles long and 200 feet deep, Windermere’s lakeshore wetlands are a nationally important habitat with more than a thousand ducks, geese and swans throughout the year, including occasional rarer visitors such as the black swan and long-tailed duck. Families of elusive otters have also been spotted out on the lake in recent years, while an impressive cormorant colony roosts on the islands out in the middle of Windermere.
Running in July and August, Windermere Lake Cruises’ nature-themed sailings will include live commentary from a Lake District National Park Ranger, who will provide a unique perspective of the lake, its wildlife and its history.
Passengers can join the cruises for all or part of the 3 hour tours on board one of the lake’s aptly-named steamers, Swan or Teal. Along the way, they will take in secluded bays, ancient woodlands and the towering silhouettes of the Langdale Pikes and other surrounding fells.
The Rangers will be based on the historic vessel’s top deck and with no fixed script, they will focus on what’s happening in the landscape ‘right now’. That includes an array of interesting stories and quirky facts, from Windermere’s creation in the Ice Age to its more recent development as a tourist destination. It will also be an opportunity for people of all ages to find out more some of the threats and challenges facing this unique natural habitat, and how they can help protect it for future generations.
The Discovery Cruises will set sail for Ambleside from Windermere Lake Cruises’ Steamer Pier at Bowness at 12.20pm on regular dates in July and August. To explore the southern half of the lake, passengers can join the boat on its way back down Windermere at 1.50pm.
The cruise will be sailing on the following dates:
- Wednesday 26 July
- Wednesdays 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30 August
These are all scheduled sailings. For more information please call 015394 43360 or to buy tickets, please see below:
- Bowness > Ambleside > Bowness (12.20pm - 70 mins) - This is scheduled Red Cruise and costs £10.50 per person. Please select a Red cruise ticket on a Wednesday to book online or buy a ticket from Bowness Pier.
- Bowness > Lakeside > Bowness (1.50pm - 90 mins) - This is a scheduled Yellow Cruise and costs £11 per person. Please select a Yellow cruise ticket on a Wednesday to buy online or buy a ticket from Bowness Pier.
- Bowness > Ambleside > Lakeside > Bowness ( a full circuit of the lake) 12.20pm - 3 hours - This ticket costs £19.50 and can be bought online by selecting a Freedom of the Lake ticket for a Wednesday online or buy a ticket from Bowness Pier.
There is no extra cost to hear the Ranger talks. Our Discovery Cruises are run in partnership with The Lake District National Park.