Last year, the Lake District was awarded Unesco World Heritage status and this boosted tourism to this already very popular area of the UK. It’s an area of outstanding natural beauty with plenty of wonderful things to do and see. The only problem with it as a destination is that it’s not wonderfully easy to get to for people travelling a long way. The nearest airport is Manchester which is over an hour and a half drive away in good traffic. As such, the Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership invested £4.95million to develop Carlisle Lake District Airport which will be opening for commercial and business flights on June 4th this year.
Originally built in the 1930s as an RAF base, Carlisle Lake District Airport was sold to local authorities in the 60s. Several companies attempted to run passenger services from the airport over the years, the most recent in 1993, but they all collapsed after a short period of time. The exact details of this current attempt aren’t known exactly but it’s expected they will run flights there from London, Belfast and Dublin amongst others. It’s believed flights will be run by Aer Lingus Regional and Flybe.
The Lake District
Unesco World Heritage status is not the only reason there is a need for an airport in the Lake District. More Britons taking ‘staycations’ has a lot to do with it and it is the most popular UK tourist destination after London. If you’re wondering why it’s so popular, it’s not just because it’s ridiculously beautiful with awe-inspiring dramatic scenery, there is also so much to do there. Here are just a few ideas:
You can’t go to the Lake District and not have anything to do with any lakes! They aren’t just lovely to look at, they are also fun with row boats for hire, water sports galore, beautiful walks around the lakes, lunch by a lake, theatre by a lake, lake wildlife at the Lakes Aquarium, swimming in a lake, boat tours on a lake, dog walking by a lake and many photography opportunities.
Visit Beatrix Potter’s house and see the countryside that inspired her stories. Wander around the remains of a Roman fort. Take a steam engine ride through the hills. Have a peek at Wordsworth’s house and garden. Check out the Neolithic stone circle at Castlerigg. Explore the Lakeland Motor Museum. Take a selfie at Hadrian’s Wall. Pretend you’re a king in Game of Thrones in one of the many castles. There’s so much history to immerse yourself in, you’ll forget which century it is.
It’s not all about hiking. The hiking is amazing though with such a variety of terrain and scenery to experience. But why walk when you can fly? There’s gyroplane flying and ballooning available or, for more earthbound fun, there is cycling, pony trekking, climbing, kayaking, red squirrel and bird watching, stargazing, pottery making, fishing, cooking as well as excellent eating and beer drinking opportunities.
With so much to love about the Lake District, it’s easy to see why it needs its own close and convenient airport. Let’s hope it’s a success this time round. To make sure you’re covered for your Lake District trip or any other holiday in the UK, get a quote for ERV’s UK travel insurance cover here.