Coachman's House, Coniston
COACHMAN’S HOUSE: CONISTON
WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT:
For the peaceful and picturesque location
Make the most of the walks right on the doorstep
Take a soak in a gorgeous deep bath
Enjoy luxurious and cosy interiors
Coachman’s House is situated in the pretty village of Coniston in the Southern part of the Lake District National Park. It’s a 20-minute drive to Ambleside and a little further to Windermere and we found that it was a great base for exploring The Lakes. Coniston is known for Coniston Old Man, which is a well-known mountain walk, and also Coniston Water, which is the third longest lake in the Lake District. It’s also famous as the poet and social critic John Ruskin lived here and Donald Campbell broke four World Water Speed Records on the lake in the 1950s and there are museums for both in the area.
During our week away, we visited Kendal, Ambleside, Windermere, Ulverston, Cartmel and Grasmere. The latter was our favourite as it’s a really pretty little village famous for its Gingerbread and it really is the nicest Gingerbread we’ve ever eaten! They tell you it’s best eaten on the day and it’s good advice, as that was definitely when it tasted it’s best.
We also did a pleasant 8 mile walk to nearby Tarn Hows and walked all the way from the village, through the forest, around the Tarn and back again. There were a few hills but nothing too strenuous and it was an enjoyable way to spend the afternoon.
The cottage is portrayed well on the website but it’s even more lovely in person. It’s hidden away on a road on the way up to the local copper mines and it was so quiet the whole time we were there, with just the relaxing sound of birds tweeting.
The layout of the cottage works well with the kitchen and main bedroom with ensuite on the ground floor (both with underfloor heating), two living areas and a shower room on the second floor and a second bedroom on the top floor. There is also a small garden area with tables hidden in the trees opposite the house.
We slept in the downstairs bedroom, largely because it had a freestanding bath, and spent most of our time in the living room at the top of the stairs, which had built-in Netflix on the TV and a very comfortable sofa and chaise style chair and pouffe.
The second sitting room, the ‘snug’, was hidden behind a bookcase, which was very cleverly designed and the room definitely had a cosy feel to it, with dark grey walls and a separate reading area.
The rest of the cottage was very white in its colour scheme and it worked to create a bright and relaxing space with lots of light. The only small issue with this was the white floorboards in the kitchen as it was hard not to get them mucky, especially when bringing all your luggage in on arrival!
There was lots of designer décor throughout including Kartell Ghost chairs and side tables, Original BTC table lamps and a Roger Oates stair runner and I spotted lots of traditional Moroccan light fittings. The whole cottage has been very tastefully put together and it was really clean and tidy throughout.
Obviously staying in a cottage, we cooked for ourselves in the kitchen most of the time and made sure we fitted in a couple of trips to our favourite Northern supermarket, Booths! I could easily buy everything in this supermarket and wish we had one a little closer to home.
Since we visited at the end of March, we sampled some Easter products and also got some lovely breakfast items, including the best potato cakes I’ve ever had and some delicious sausages.
Along with cooking for ourselves, we also tried out some of the local foodie offerings, including homemade sourdough pizza, the best brownies we’ve ever eaten (peanut butter and salted caramel – need I say more) and the biggest vanilla slice I’ve seen, at local bakery Fat Flour.
We also had a meal out one evening at Steam Bistro in the village, which I would highly recommend. They offer a set menu of two or three courses but have a wide range to choose from and it was hard to decide what to order!
In the end I opted for Ras-el-Hanout Haloumi to start and Steve chose the special of Pork Belly and Black Pudding. For main, I ordered the Coq au Vin and Steve had the Pork and Beef Ragu.
The portions were very healthy and nicely presented and everything was delicious, particularly the Coq Au Vin which was hearty, flavoursome and comforting. It’s also BYO with a small corkage fee, which makes it really reasonable for an evening out.
We had a wonderful time at Coachman’s House. It was the perfect bolthole for a week away of relaxation and we were genuinely sad to leave! If you’re looking for a break in The Lakes then both the cottage and Coniston are must visits.
Dotty Dishes received a discounted press rate to stay at Coachman's House.