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This beautiful market town is right on the border of Cumbria, Lancashire & Yorkshire. Set on the idyllic River Lune, among rolling hills, it is an elegant spot, full of cobbled streets, independent shops, great pubs and cafes. The town centres on the ancient church, is full of interesting buildings and pretty cottages and is a delight at any time, but especially around Christmas.
Ruskin’s View is a place to sit and take in the panorama of the Lune Valley, with rolling meadows and lush green hills. Ruskin enjoyed the view so much he pronounced in 1875 that it was one of the loveliest views in England. You can easily wander through the churchyard to get there or clamber from the River Lune up the 86 ‘radical’ steps.
Devil’s Bridge further down on the River Lune is a lovely spot to walk, and this very high ancient bridge with 3 arches, is a real landmark for the town. Here you’ll find a legendary food van serving bacon butties and popular with motorcyclists, walkers and cyclists who congregate there after a trip around the area.
Kirkby Lonsdale Brewery is popular throughout the pubs in the town and has its own taproom bar, the Royal Barn. It’s a converted barn with cosy interior and you can taste some of the 20 cask/keg or numerous bottled options. They also create their own gins and serve nibbles and snacks too.
The Orange Tree is a cosy pub with a friendly atmosphere and great fish and chips. Another great pub is the Sun Inn, with open fires, beams, oak floors and a superb locally sourced menu, changing with the seasons. Next door to the Sun, is the lovely St Mary’s Church – set in a stunning churchyard, with wildflowers and old gravestones, and views out to the river. If you want a central café, the Crossing Point Café has some excellent lunch options all homemade with great cakes and they are an independent wine shop too. On warm days sit outside and do some people watching.
There are lots of independent shops here, from artisan chocolate to locally made shower and bath products, unusual gifts, cards, books and accessories, homeware, ornaments, children’s toys and clothing, second-hand books and outdoor wear. You can spend a happy afternoon browsing from one shop to another.
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