A walk to explore Rydal Cave in the Lake District

Whilst in the Lake District in April we decided to visit Rydal Cave, Rydal Cave is a man-made quarry that has been hollowed out of a rock outcrop overlooking Rydal Water.

We found this a great walk, with lots for the girls to enjoy, the cave with its stepping stone access, it’s grandeur once inside is quite magical especially the view back out of the cave.



Lots of rocks to clamber and nothing too steep for the girls on this walk. Amazing views across both Rydal Water and Grasmere. With some stunning bluebell displays at the moment too.


Located close to both Grassmere and Ambleside along the A591 we parked at White Moss Car Park postcode for this is LA22 9SE.  The car park is pay and display but you don’t pay until you leave. Which I find is ideal when you are unsure how long you will be out walking. The car park has a toilet block with baby changing facilities too.


It’s a lovely walk beside the River Rothay as you head away from the car park, which the girls couldn’t resist enjoying throwing stones with Ruby.


Then you come to a bridge across to the woodland, where you are greeted at the moment with an abundance of beautiful bluebells. We couldn’t resist stopping by some for photos.



It’s a gentle uphill walk through the woodland until you come to a stone wall and gate, we decided to head right a little then straight ahead in the direction of the Rydal Cave.




We noticed a bench along this path too which was a bargaining chip for getting the girls to keep going. A stop of and a little drink before we carried on. It’s quite rocky underfoot on this part with many different sized stones, walking shoes are advisable.



The scenery as your walking along the paths here is stunning.  You come to a clearing that looks quite barren with slate chippings across the ground but you then realise you are upon the mouth of the cave, you can see people exploring the cave entering via the stepping stones over the clear water, a few people getting wet toes!

We did this also and really enjoyed exploring the inside of the cave carefully. I have read since getting back that some rocks have been known to fall inside of the cave. Thankfully this wasn’t the case for us whilst there but do take care if you visit.






After exploring the cave we headed back along the path and found a little higher from the path a hidden bench with spectacular views across Rydal Water to stop and enjoy our picnic lunch. There where also some great rocks for Willow to scramble around on.




We headed back along the path towards Grasmere, we then made our way down towards the shore of Grasmere it was a little steep the way we took. By the shore of Grasmere, it was quite busy with lots of people taking a break. We noticed it looked a little quieter and some shade over the bridge on the shores on that side, it was just a short walk through Penny Rock Wood so we headed there.







After cooling down and enjoying paddling in the water we then made our way back to the car park. A picturesque walk on a winding path through the woods with the River Rothay.


The walk did take a little persuasion for one of the girls but afterwards and on reflection, she told me she really enjoyed seeing the cave and paddling at the waterside. You can see more photos of our walk in the YouTube video below.

 I hope this gives you an idea of what to expect of Rydal Cave and if you’re in the area whilst visiting the Lake District it’s definitely one walk to add to the list that is great for the whole family.

I don’t think the walk up to the cave is suitable for pushchair or wheelchairs due to the uneven ground sadly.


Have you been to the Rydal Cave?

You can read more about our adventures in the lakes, including using the Lake District Pound for the first time here.




  1. May 11, 2019 / 12:49 pm

    Great to see this post. We stumbled upon this cave whilst staying at the lakes last year. We also enjoyed the Gingerbread at The Grasmere Gingerbread shop.

    • thefreckledmumof2
      May 30, 2019 / 11:48 am

      Oh I never tried the Grasmere gingerbread shop the line was rather long! Next time I will have to indulge! Thanks

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