What better way to enjoy these beautiful lakes than a trip on a old steamer. Many of the lakes still have steamers serving on them. Many of the steamers were built in Victorian times so you get to see the lakes as your parents, grand-parents and even great grand-parents did.
Ullswater is served by the steamer called ‘Lady of the Lake’ which was launched in 1877. The boat has had a mixed past. After only 4 years in service she sunk in storms and spent a month at the bottom of the lake. In 1958 she was sunk again but was quickly recovered and remained in service until the mid 1960’s. Sadly then she was destroyed by fire and was abandoned until 1978 when restoration was started. She continues to serve as the oldest serving passenger vessel in the world.
Coniston waters is served by the MV Ruskin and the MV Ransome which were built in the 1920’s. These boats are powered by solar electicity making their green credentials excellent. There is also a steam yacht gondola that serves the lake. Originally commissioned for the Furness Railway Company this craft was built in 1859 but spend some of its life at the bottom of the lake. It was recovered in around 1975 and entered service again in 1980. The vessel is now owned by the National Trust but even as a member you will still have to pay a fee to use it.
The service on Lake Windermere is operated by the Windermere Iron Steamboat Company who offer a number of services with drop off points at key locations around the lake.
These locations include Ambleside, Brockhole, Bowness and the steam railway station and Aquarium to the south of the lake. This is a great way to explore the lake and the countryside at the same time.