Lancaster & The Lune Valley
Lancaster & The Lune Valley, the perfect combination of city and countryside.
Lancaster & The Lune Valley lie to the north of Lancashire. The area is often referred to as the perfect combination of City, Coast and Countryside as Lancaster is only a few miles from Morecambe Bay with the Lune Valley stretching to Kirby Lonsdale, bordering the Lake district to the North and the Yorkshire Dales to the East.
Travelling to the area
By road, Lancaster is located just off the M6, leave at Junctions 33-35.
By rail, Lancaster is located on the West Coast Main Line which brings frequent Intercity Services from London Euston and Glasgow.
There are also regular bus and coach services from all over the country click Stagecoachbus for details.
By air, Manchester, Liverpool and Blackpool airports are within comfortable reach.
Lancaster is situated in the north west of England. The origin of the city name is thought to come from its imposing castle and its two rivers running through it. The River Lune (the other being the Ribble), forms the original form of Landcaster being the the Roman replacement for castle, i.e Lune-caster, which morphed into its present day Lancaster.
The historic city of Lancaster is a small, vibrant university city, and rich in cultural heritage. Lancaster's history can be traced back thousands of years and has so much to offer, from castles and museums, where Lancaster's past comes to life, to great shopping, entertaining theatre and swish eateries.
Art and Culture
Award-winning public art includes the specially commissioned artworks that line the superb River Lune Millennium Park, a 15km riverside foot and cycle path that links Lancaster with Caton. Carvings and space-age signs, sculptures, glasswork rocks and 'upside down' trees await discovery, and the stunning Millennium Bridge at the Lancaster end of the park is a work of art in itself.
In Lancaster centre, the City Museum has a regular changing exhibition programme, alongside the permanent displays. The award winning Maritime Museum is also well worth a visit along with the Judges' Lodgings which is the historic home of the famous witch hunter, Thomas Covell
Lancaster's Grand Theatre is one of the oldest theatres in England, and this beautiful auditorium hosts a varied programme of concerts, comedy and theatre.
The Dukes is a regional theatre of national repute, producing their own professional in-house shows and hosting touring productions. Their annual summer outdoor production that promenades amongst the beautiful surroundings of Williamson Park is a must-see. The Tropical Butterfly House, Mini-Beasts, Bird Enclosure and Small Mammal section are also all to be found in the parks 54 acres.
Lancaster Castle is one of the most important historic monuments in the North West.
This fascinating Grade 1 listed building has dominated Lancaster for almost 1000 years and is one of the best preserved and hardest working castles in the country.
See the place where the Lancashire Witches were convicted and condemned to die. Experience the dungeons and imagine what it was like to have been imprisoned there. Visit the Crown Court where thousands of convicts were transported to Australia and then marvel at the beautiful Gillow furniture in the Grand Jury Room and the famous display of heraldry in The Shire Hall.
Lancaster offers a rewarding shopping experience with two well established shopping centres (St Nicholas Arcades and Marketgate), all the big high street names and lots of individual retailers in a network of pedestrian streets.
Wander round alleyways and happen upon attractive speciality shops and tea rooms. Step back in time and visit Atkinson's in Lancaster, a specialist tea and coffee shop established in 1837. Or visit the Butcher's in Hornby for some fine awarding winning meats and pies as you explore the Lune Valley.
The district really has a thriving gastro pub, restaurant and theatre culture.
Hidden down charming narrow lanes are unique restaurants and trendy nightime cafe's housed in historic buildings. There is a huge selection of independent eating places in the district, many serving specialist local foods, many with alfresco seating in the summer months.
For those who can't resist the sea air, the coast of Morecambe and Heysham are less than 5 miles from Lancaster.
Situated in North Lancashire on the Cumbrian border, the Carnforth area combines superb countryside and coast with a rich and fascinating history.
Carnforth will forever be famous for being the film location for the David Lean's classic film 'Brief Encounter'. Within the busy working railway station, is the award-winning Visitor Centre which opened in October 2003 after an extensive restoration programme and offers the visitor a wealth of attractions, facilities and a fascinating range of exhibitions.
Free admission, donations welcome.
For details on opening hours and special events visit the website Carnforth Station Visitor Centre
Carnforth makes an ideal base for a tour of the immediate area and a gateway to places further afield like Lancaster and the Lake District.
The Lune Valley
The River Lune in Lancashire stretches from Kirby Lonsdale on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, through the northern edge of the Forest of Bowland, via Lancaster before entering Morecambe Bay at Glasson Dock. The area known as the Lune Valley is the 15-20 mile stretch from Kirby Lonsdale to Lancaster which passes through spectacular countryside with unspolit villages and acres of green pasture and woodland, perfect for walking, cycling or just relaxing.
Kirby Lonsdale situated on the River Lune at the southern edge of the Lake District, is a beautiful unspoilt town with a number of historic buildings and the famous 'Ruskins View' - seen from the towns churchyard and described by John Ruskin as the 'one of the loveliest scenes in England and therefore the world'. Equally attractive is the view of Devil's Bridge which spans the River Lune and is said to date from the 13th century.
For accommodation in the Lune Valley visit our Lancaster area listings page HERE
Last Updated: 28 Apr 2015