The very pretty Georgian town of Cockermouth is the gateway to the largely undiscovered Western Lake District. It’s a lovely place to stay and the added bonus is you can be on a lakeshore, at the beach or up a fell within 20 minutes’ drive – if you can tear yourself away from its wealth of attractions.
The locals describe the town as being like a department store thanks to its range of independent shops. Foodies love the butchers, bakers, fishmonger and deli, while those seeking something special for their homes are totally spoilt. Then there are the loveliest of clothes and shoe stores, where even the littlest shoppers are well catered for, and the quirkiest of hardware shops – one even has its own museum.