DAY 33: Ambleside to Kendal – 15 miles
The sun was really trying to break through as I left the Ambleside Backpackers. Full of optimism and continental breakfast I knew I would soon be stopping at Windermere; the town I had been aiming for all along when I decided to walk through the Lake District, but distance wise it simply wasn’t feasible as an overnight stop. Almost directly after leaving Ambleside I reached Lake Windermere where I sat down near the touristy pier area to enjoy the view over the lake, and remove my thermal layer top. I wouldn’t be needing that today! On arrival at Windermere – another pretty tourist town – I stopped for a coffee break at the Pig Cafe and then grabbed some snacks before leaving town east via the country lanes and bridle paths.
After about an hour I had zig-zagged my way back onto the quiet B road that would lead me out of the Lake District. With the temperature rising all the time, I passed some of the prettiest scenery I’ve seen on this trip and like the English countryside, the miles just rolled on by. Such a difference from just 24 hours ago. Knowing there were a couple of pubs coming up, I was also looking forward to a traditional Sunday roast. Initially heading for the second of these pubs, when I passed the first and it was called the Sun (one of my favourite pubs back home) well, how could I not! Enjoying a lovely lamb roast sat in the sunshine – at the Sun – it was tough to get moving afterwards but I only had an hour before I arrived in Kendal. Yet another quaint picturesque town which I also wish I had longer to explore.
The very helpful Tony checked me into the hostel right on the high street, and seeing a note saying that if you need help booking forward accommodation, just ask… Tony spend the next half hour trying to find me something on route between Kendal and Lancaster. Eventually we found the perfect spot – Arnside Backpackers on the coast – but sadly there were full. Without much option I sent them an email on the off chance, and was chuffed to receive a call from them not half an hour later saying they would find me a bed! As helpful as Tony was however, and the rest of the hostel was well equipped, my dorm buddies left a lot to be desired. I was sharing with two ladies – not travelling together – but both overstaying at the hostel as they are really sick with wretched coughs! Honestly during the course of the evening you would have through they were dying so my super strength earplugs definitely came in handy tonight. Plus the extra blanket Tony gave me was a god-send as they obviously both like to sleep with the windows wide open onto the noisy street below. Oh the joys of backpacker living!