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A family-friendly Lake District campsite, nestled between the quiet shores of Bassenthwaite Lake and the beautiful Cumbrian fells
Louise Smith and Andrea Bramhall seem to have found a winning formula – find an old farm in the most enviable location you can think of, give it a good make-over with a lawn-mower, a few sign posts and a spanking new block of modern showers, then open up the gates and let the campers roll in! Their first campsite in North Norfolk – that they took over almost 10 years ago – received a solid two thumbs up from all the Cool Camping clan – and we very much expect it to be exactly the same at Kestrel Lodge. After all, if they were on to a winner the first time, we think they may just have topped it here!

Set in the shadow of mighty Skiddaw, climbing away to the south east, and a stone’s throw from sparkling Bassenthwaite Lake to the south west, Kestrel Lodge Camping is a traditional Lakeland campsite on an 18th-century farm. Grassy pitches enjoy stonking great vistas across the adjacent fields to where the hills rise and fall, speckled with woodland like barnacles on a whale's back.

There’s nothing formulaic about the welcome you receive though. Louise, Andrea and the three generations of family brought together to share the dream, are personable and friendly and just as in awe of the surroundings as most visitors. They can point you in the direction of each of the nine Wainwrights walkable from the campsite, as well as the nearest pub – a cosy little spot in Bassenthwaite with real ales on tap. It’s with fond memories that they too remember their younger days camping here and it’s clear they want to explore the surroundings of their new home as much as every guest. You almost feel guilty trekking off into the hills without them.

The ethos, they tell us, is “small, quiet, friendly, traditional, but with nice hot showers, and somewhere to clean your boots and dogs.” And the result is the very antithesis of a holiday park. For proper camping with proper views, Kestrel Lodge should be top of the list.

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The Owner Says

A traditional camping ground with a modern shower block, situated in a quiet corner of the Lake District National Park. Sitting in an enviable position, below Skiddaw with views across the valley to Bassenthwaite Lake, Kestrel Lodge Campsite is surrounded by some of the best fell walking routes in the country. It’s a perfect base for exploring the Lake District and Northern Fells. Keswick and Cockermouth are within a 15 minute drive, where you will find a large number of shops, cafes, restaurants, and other attractions. Within short stroll away from the campsite is the village of Bassenthwaite, which has a great local pub, serving comforting hot food and traditional ale. Located off the beaten track yet within easy access of everything, you will feel like you are in the middle of the countryside, without being too far away amenities. ****Kestrel Lodge also offer a small number of Electrical Hook Up Pitches, for these please contact the site directly to book.****

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