Tourist Information in Cumbria and The Lake District
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Coniston Town Information

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Coniston, with Yewdale Fells in the background - Photo © George Ford
Coniston, with Yewdale Fells in the background - Photo: George Ford CCL

The village of Coniston is famous for both its great lake and its walking terrain. It is overshadowed by the Old Man of Coniston (standing at over 2,600ft) and is an ideal setting from which to explore Lakeland, owing its existence to copper and slate found buried in its mountain slopes. Quarries and mine workings can still be seen.
Five-mile long Coniston Water has a number of islands, one of which became Arthur Ransome’s ‘Wild Cat Island’ in his children’s adventure story ‘Swallows & Amazons’. It was on this lake in 1967 that Donald Campbell was tragically killed in an ill-fated attempt to break the water-speed record in ‘Bluebird’.

A major attraction is the steam yacht Gondola, first launched on Coniston Water in 1859, which takes visitors on a journey across the waters. The yacht is now operated by the National Trust.

Coniston's famous Steam Yacht Gondola - Photo © George Ford
Coniston's famous Steam Yacht Gondola
Photo: George Ford CCL

The reformer and critic John Ruskin lived on the lake’s bank at Brantwood and is buried in Coniston churchyard. A visit to the John Ruskin Museum is highly recommended.