A World Heritage Site and England’s largest National Park, the Lake District is home to beautiful mountains, valleys, and lakes, nestled in Cumbria county. Glacial erosion during the last Ice Age carved dramatic landscapes where hills roll for miles and miles, and where mountain peaks tower above bodies of water below. The Lake District, including Lake District National Park and the surrounding market towns, is atmospheric and breathtaking, making it a brilliant spot for an escape into nature.
The towns of Windermere and Ambleside are the biggest hubs here for visitors, but it's once you step away from civilisation and onto the sprawling network of trails that the Lake District really shines. Mountains are called fells here, and there are 214 of them with Scafell Pike being the tallest at 3,210 feet. See the famous dry stone walls by walking a stretch of the Cumbrian Way, a 73-mile long, low-lying route that takes eight days to walk in total. Beyond the trails of the Lake District, it's many winding, rolling roads are beloved by British cyclists. Rock climbing and ice climbing are popular in the Lake District as well. And for good reason—the terrain is top notch for it.
Once you've checked off your outdoorsy activities give yourself the day off and explore the local villages, full of authentic pubs and proper pints of local English ale. You can also book a seat on the scenic Cumbiran Coast train, a railway line that visits some of the quieter towns in The Lake District. Perfect if you want to get away from it all.
One of the best ways to see all this incredible scenery is from a rental cabin or cottage where you can fully disconnect from the modern world. From historical homes to modern designs, and traditional classics, the choice of cabin, cottage, and Airbnb in the Lake District is impressive. Below you'll find 11 of our favourites, finely curated after hours of searching. If we wouldn't want to stay there, it's not on the list.
The 11 Best Lake District Cottage Rentals & Airbnbs
Vibe: Pure Seclusion
There is nothing more quintessentially British than a remote, stone bothy on a striking mountainside location. Well, that’s exactly what you get with a stay at The Hog House. Given its setting, it's hard to beat this bothy as a place for a walking holiday. Open the door and walk uninterrupted for hours, visiting sleepy villages, seeking out lake views, taking photos of the surroundings, and filling your lungs with fresh mountain air. Once you’re back home, light up the log burner and gaze out at the sun setting behind the fells.
Rate: £250/two night
Vibe: Fairytale Feels
Hide away at a tiny, wood-clad cabin deep in the forest on this fully off-grid stay. Hansel House is perfect for off-grid first times thanks to lots of amenities. The team here will light the wood stove and wood-fired hot tub prior to your check in so you can get right to relaxing, and there's 24-hour support if you do find yourself in need of something. A hamper of local cheese and bread also greets you on your arrival, setting the tone for a gorgeous stay where you gently immerse yourself in nature. Admire the moss roof of your cabin and listen to the sounds of birds tweeting in the treetops as you sit on the deck or use the fire pit and BBQ to make a warm meal.
Vibe: Hansel’s Big Brother
Hinderlandes Cabin is a bigger version of Hansel House above and comes with all its benefits and amenities, plus a few extras. Inspired by Scandi design, the cabin is an eye-catching black that stands out in a landscape of soft greens and browns. Inside, the space is comfortable and warm, with a wood burning stove to keep things toasty and large windows to welcome the outdoors inside. There are plenty of luxury touches too: As well as the hampers and 24-hour support, you’ll also find Egyptian cotton sheets and a memory foam mattress on the double bed. As far as cabins in The Lake District go, there aren’t much better for a spot of rest and relaxation.
Vibe: A Cabin Fit for Bond
Perched in one of the most incredible waterside areas in The Lake District, The Boathouse at Lingholm Estate is a once-in-a-lifetime stay. The lakeside holiday home boasts jaw-dropping views out every window and around every corner with an open plan living design. There's easy access to water sports and activities too: launch your kayak or paddleboard from the dock downstairs, or keep your feet on dry land and walk the peaceful forest trails nearby. Venture slightly further down the trails and you’ll reach Catbells. This walk is roughly 3.5 miles in length and is one of the must-do trails in the area that takes you to the lookout at the top of the hill.
Rate: £735/two nights
Vibe: Stargazing Stays
Doze off to the sound of a waterfall flowing nearby in a wooden cabin in the heart of the Lake District on a getaway to one of the quieter parts of the park. Wake up and watch the fog lifting off the hills while sheep graze nearby. As night falls and the clouds clear, the sky fills with stars—brilliant for photographers and anyone who wants to see the constellations with no light pollution. Inside Rydal Cabin it's a cozy affair with wooden clad walls, a wood-burning stove, sleeping room for five, and plenty of blankets, making it the perfect spot for curling up with a good book after a day spent exploring the nearby trails and seeking views of Lake Windermere. There's no wifi, but this Lake District Airbnb is dog friendly.
Vibe: Funky Charm
Feel the retro vibe of this log cabin in the forest that’s great for people who want to be amongst nature but not too far from the action. Just a stone’s throw from the busy market town of Ambleside, in a tranquil spot called Loughrigg, is your two-room, pet-friendly holiday home with a full kitchen and room for four with a double bed and two twins. From here, head north and climb Loughrigg Fell, taking in views of Loughrigg Lake as you go, or keep the incline minimal and check out Skelwith Force Waterfall and a historic home called Silverwaithe, built by a suffragist in the early 1900s. Make the short trip into Ambleside in the evenings and find traditional pubs heaving with a mix of locals and visitors, or eat in and enjoy the shared sauna and swimming pool that are on the property.
Vibe: Tiny House Glamping
The tiny home revolution has made its way to the Lake District, with the Inspire Pod at Castlerigg Hall being one of the best in the region. An A-frame design with extensions on either side gives this space an airy and light feel despite its small footprint, which is expanded into the outdoors with enough decking for an outdoor living room. Wander around the farm or make your way into nearby Keswick for a slice of rural English life, or follow the trail out to the Castlerigg Stone Circle. Planning an active break? Castlerigg Hall is part of Pod’n’Pedal, a program where you cycle 70 miles over four days, staying at a different holiday rentals each night along the route.
Vibe: Glamping Cabin
Wood cabins are hard to beat and the cosy Lantern House on Drybeck Farm is a top choice for exploring the Lake District. Hop into your private wood fired hot tub after a spot of wild swimming in the river that's on the Drybeck Farm property. Discover ancient rock carvings on a walk nearby or explore the mystical Eden Valley with its stone circles and caves; there’s even live music on the farm from time to time. With so much to do here, it’s easy to forget what's just beyond the farm’s edge. Jump in the car and take a short drive into the heart of the Lake District and walk across the landscape to see some remaining parts of Hadrian’s Wall. The North Pennines are nearby as well, and Yorkshire Dales National Park is also accessible by car if you want to hit every natural area you can.
Rate: £149+/two night
Vibe: Deluxe Treehouse
What started as a passion project for the owners of this holiday rental has seen a simple treehouse grow into a spectacular elevated cabin with some unique design choices. Now with three dedicated bedrooms, flushing toilets, and hot showers, the Silva Treehouse is a proper luxury destination. Clamber up the stairs to your living quarters and look out over the hills of north England. Once you’re ready for more activities, make your way back down to earth on the slide (yep, a slide) and drop into the hot tub. There's also a ping pong table, bar, fire pit, wood stove, pond, and room for six with two king beds and one double bed. With so many hikes, walks, and boat tours nearby, this cabin is perfect for a longer stay.
Rate: £770/two nights
Vibe: 400-Year-Old Barn
Remote barn conversions in the mountains by the sea don’t get more luxe than Raven’s Crag. Having stood on this spot since the early 17th century, it's part of the landscape now. But it's also a real cottage now too: the robust, dark rock exterior with only a few slivers for windows hides an incredible interior with rustic furniture, a warming stove, and a modern kitchen. The two bedrooms, with enough space for four people, are tucked away in the rafters where you’ll have to watch your head on the aged wooden beams. Take a dip in the chilly stream nearby and warm up afterwards with a cup of hot tea in the hammock.
Vibe: Famous Neighbors
As is to be expected from a Bothy, this Airbnb listing is a bit rugged, but luxe touches an inviting fireplace inside and a hot tub and fire pit outside—plus panoramic views—make it a great getaway. Located in Near Sawrey, where famed children’s author Beatrix Potter lived (hence the name), this small stone building was built in the 1700s during the Georgian period and was once used as a place to store saddles. The cosy cottage has easy access to nearby villages via bridleways, so local pubs and cafes where you can experience a dose of daily life here are only a short walk away. Or, lace up your hiking boots and climb the trails up to Swirl How and Coniston Old Man.