This year in the Lake District, winter seems to have been almost impossible to shake off. Just when we were starting to see signs of spring, the heavy snowfall brought to us courtesy of the Beast from the East quickly reminded us of the power of the coldest season. Spring buds and pregnant sheep found themselves buried in the snow and in some parts of the county the army were called in to deliver supplies. Thankfully, we have now seen a thaw and can once again look forward to the start of spring.

Already, daffodil buds are beginning to reach up out of the ground and it won’t be long until once again the area is illuminated with the happy sight of yellow and orange petals blanketing the floor. William Wordsworth was so inspired by the sight of daffodils in the Lake District that he went on to write one of his most famous poems, “I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud”. If you are planning a Lake District break in the latter half of March and early April, then do take your own wander around one of these sites.

1. Brigsteer Woods & Sizergh Castle

Sizergh Castle

Sizergh Castle (George Hopkins /

Daffodils are a common sight across the UK in the spring but there are not many places where you can find a native wild daffodil. Therefore, the daffodil displays at Brigsteer Woods are particularly special, as it’s here you will find native blooms, along with very rare High Brown Fritillary butterfly. The woods are near to the National Trust site, Sizergh Castle, and at the castle you will find landscaped gardens that are illuminated with blooms during the spring, including daffodils. The BBC’s Country File magazine has produced an excellent walking guide that will take you from the castle into the woods, combining the best of both displays.

2. Caldbeck


Caldbeck (Philip Halling /

The pretty village of Caldbeck is steeped with history, dating back to the 12th century. It’s off the beaten track, being tucked away in the northern edges of the Lake District, far removed from the main tourist hubs. The village has a chocolate box appeal, complete with charming and cosy inns. During the spring, the village is brimming with colour from golden daffodils that stretch into the surrounding low level woodlands. If you like real ale, then do consider a walk from the Oddfellows Inn in Caldbeck along the Cumbria Way and then down the path along the Cald Beck stream to Hesket Newmarket, home of one of Cumbria’s first micro breweries. The route is brimming with daffodils in the spring.

3. Dora’s Field, Rydal

Dora's Field

Dora's Field (Andrew Curtis /

If you want to see hosts of daffodils without a long walk, then Dora’s Field is a fine choice. Adjacent to St Mary’s Church in Rydal, the field was bought by William Wordsworth in 1826. Facing possible eviction by the landlady of Rydal Mount where the Wordsworth family were living, Wordsworth bought the field with an idea of building a house there to enable the family to stay in the area.

When the eviction threat was withdrawn, Wordsworth gifted the field to his daughter, Dora. Dora sadly passed away aged 43 in 1847 from tuberculosis. Devastated, the elderly William Wordsworth planted hundreds of daffodil bulbs in Dora’s Field. Today, the site is owned and maintained by the National Trust and the daffodils are still prevalent today.

4. Lowther Castle, Near Penrith

Lowther Castle

Lowther Castle (Simon Ledingham /

In 2012, volunteers set a new world record at Lowther Castle when they planted 106,528 daffodil bulbs in just three hours in the grounds around the castle ruins. A mile-long border was planted, creating a spectacular sight. A lot of work has gone into renovating the grounds of this long neglected estate in recent years, and during the spring the gardens, once overgrown shrubland, are now a delight to explore. The castle has a huge adventure play area so if you are visiting the Lake District with children and hoping to see the daffodils then this is place for you.

5. Wordsworth Daffodil Garden, Grasmere

Wordsworth Daffodils in Grasmere

Wordsworth Daffodil Garden (flipflopnick /

The Wordsworth Daffodil Garden in the centre of Grasmere provides another opportunity to see displays of several thousand daffodils without requiring much of a walk. The garden was created in 2003 as a community project in order to raise funds to support local causes. Around 10,000 daffodil bulbs were planted, and in addition, members of the public were invited to purchase slate stones engraved with their names that were then used to create paths in the garden. Entrance to the garden is free.

6. Glencoyne Bay, Ullswater

Glencoyne Bay

Glencoyne Bay (Michael Graham /

We would be remiss of course if we didn’t mention Glencoyne Bay, and we have certainly saved the best for last when it comes to the top places to see daffodils in the Lake District. For it was in this quiet corner of Ullswater where in April of 1802 William Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy took a stroll through the woodland that adjoins the lakeshore. Wordsworth was so enamoured by the sight of several thousand daffodils here that he went on to write “I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud”. Today, the area is maintained by the National Trust and there is a delightful walk that takes you from the car park at Aira Force waterfall through the bay.