Friday, 30 September 2011

Ambleside

Day 2

Our final Lake District destination of the day - Ambleside.  In 2004 we spent a few days here at the Compston House American Style B&B.  It was a nice B&B that served massive portions of pancakes for breakfast.  It was here we discovered the delights of Pingu too.  So it was good to see it was still going as we drove into Ambleside.

So had things changed in seven years?  Yes and No.  The library hadn't changed, quite a lot of the shops and restaurants were still there including the weird Thai restaurant.  There was the scary looking sports bar still going, which had the music quiz machine we got addicted to.  There were some new shops including a Costa (they get everywhere these days, though the cinnamon latte is fab).

Lucy's Restaurant and Provisions Shop had changed - it was just a restaurant now and the lovely shop selling all sorts of wonderful stuff (flavoured vodka and fab bread as I recollect) had gone.  I was sad.  However when we got home I went online and discovered the shop had just moved to the other end of the village.  As with any town over time things will change and shops will morph into bars, cafes or other shops.  I'm very glad Lucy's has survived and thrived as it was a fab place.

Ambleside was bustling with life - all shapes and sizes.  I find Ambleside has more about it than Windermere.  Maybe because Windermere is split between the lakeside Bowness-on-Windermere and Windermere Town.  Possibly it's not too close to the Lake so it doesn't get overly commercialised with the daytrippers.  Ambleside still is packed with tourists, but more of the walker types who go up hills and do daft things like that.  I recommend it as a place to base yourself for a few days to explore the Lakes and not get bored in the evenings.

As we had a seriously packed weekend with seven northern towns / villages in two day we cut short our trip to Ambleside.  It had been a lovely weekend despite the changeable weather, but we were tired and needed to get back to reality.  It took us two hours to get home, but thankfully this time it was a traffic jam free journey back.