Pier Cottage Caravan Park

UK England North West England Cumbria Coniston

  • Electrical hook-ups
  • Dogs welcome
  • Short walk to pub
  • Good walks nearby
An unbeatable location between Coniston Village and Coniston Water
If you’ve ever turned the pages of Swallows and Amazons then you’re already part way to imagining the scenes at Pier Cottage. The great lake that’s central to the book is a combination of Windemere and Coniston (the shape of the former with the mountain backdrop of the latter) and just as children laze idly in their sailing boats, the scenery today is a speckling of dinghys, canoes and slender, plastic kayaks. True, the fictional camping takes place on an island, but the reality of Pier Cottage still isn’t far behind. The campsite rests on an outcrop of shore and boasts a decidedly separate feel from the surroundings, something only accentuated by a river channel running along one side. There’s certainly a storybook charm to it all, an easy slide of boats into the water and a beautiful pitch-up view across the lake, but there is one obvious absentee – the pegs and guy-ropes of traditional canvas campers.

We know, we know. We said we wouldn’t and we have. Pier Cottage takes the official title of a “Caravan Park” and in doing so seems to wave it’s last goodbye to all the spirit and tom-foolery of nights around the campfire. But not so fast. Though Pier Cottage is a site for campervans, caravans and motorhomes only, it still manages to leap like the Coniston fish over the bar we’ve set for cool campsites. Facilities are relatively basic – the toilet and shower block is well maintained but the sophisticated ablutions are mostly found in people’s own motorhomes, connected to the water supply that runs to every pitch – and the site has a simple, traditional feel. It is the location, though, that makes this spot so impossibly hard to match.

Boat launchers, wind surfers and wild swimmers are a stock customer here. Pier Cottage has its name for a reason and it’s not from peering out from behind the mountains. No, this is a waterfront spot that can brag spectacular lakeside views and a short walk to the Coniston Boating Centre. Hire out your own raft or head out on their famous Steam Yacht Gondola for a tour. The boating centre was never mentioned in Swallows and Amazons – perhaps paying £20 for a kayak would dampen the quaintness of the storyline. Nevertheless it’s not a bad price.

Away from the waters edge the fells that poke the horizon all offer the walking that the Lake District National Park is so famous for. A steady stroll around Tarn Hows is one of the nicer low level walks but those with time should hike up the Old Man of Consiton, climbing away to the west of the campsite to 2,635 feet. It’s one of the more hardy climbs around but well worth it for the views and when you tumble back down into Consiton village you’re already perfectly placed for one of the four pubs, the only difficult bit is deciding which one to choose!

Details

Facilities

Uni-bollards at every pitch provide electricity, water and direct TV signal. There is a simple but clean toilet and shower block, caravan waste disposal points and an area to dispose of recycling and general rubbish.

Suitable For

Caravans, motorhomes and campervans only, though pup tents are permitted with a caravan as the primary booking. Dogs (on leads) welcome.

Nearby

Boaters will find direct access to the water from the campsite but, if you don't have your own, its a 5 minute walk along the shore to Coniston Boating Centre (015394 41366) where motor and rowing boats can be hired or tours can be taken from Coniston Launch (017687 75753) or the Steam Yacht Gondola (015394 41288). It's a 10 minute walk into the village centre (015394 41533), home to the perfect mix of cafés, pubs, butchers, gift shops and newsagents, plus family fun in the form of a small playground and tennis courts that can be hired by the hour. The main activity here, though, is exploring the hills with a range of low level walks that can be combined with boat rides, along with more hardy routes like a hike up Coniston Old Man. Some of the best mountain biking is also on the doorstep in nearby Grizedale Forest with bikes for hire (01229 860369) once there.

Food & Drink

Coniston itself has plenty of choice with a co-op, a butchers, multiple cafés and four pubs – The Crown Inn (015394 41243), The Yewdale Hotel (015394 41280), The Black Bull Inn (015394 41335) and The Sun Hotel (015394 41248), along with a fish and chip shop and Sara’s Indian restaurant. It's a short drive to some of the other best picks, with The Drunken Duck (01539 436 347) at Barngates, Chesters by the River (01539 434711) at Skelwith and The Tower Bank Arms (015394 36334) at Far Sawrey amongst our favourites in the vicinity.

Opening Times

March–October.

The Owner Says

Small caravan park located on the edge of Coniston Water.

Pitches

Hardstanding pitches amongst natural greenry and a few paces from the lake shore.

No availability showing at Pier Cottage Caravan Park.

Location

Contact Pier Cottage Caravan Park, Pier Cottage, Coniston, Cumbria, LA21 8AJ

Show Map

Getting There

From the M6: Exit at junction 36 and take the A590 (turning off at the left exit towards Barrow, still A590). In Greenodd, turn right onto the A5092 and then turn right through Lowick, A5084. At Torver turn right at T-junction A593 to Coniston and go on through Coniston village. Turn Right at the bridge by The Yewdale Hotel and continue past The Crow Hotel (church on right). Exit the village at the other end over a hump back bridge and take the first right hand turn over a cattle grid. Follow the tarmac drive through the field and you have arrived!

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