Been wondering where to head for the Best Afternoon Tea in the Lake District? Unsurprising. After a day spent gallivanting up a fell (or even just watching other intrepid hikers scale a summit from below), your tummy is bound to be rumbling by tea time. When you’re on holiday, or fancy a treat, who needs to wait until dinner time?
We’ve put together a rundown of some of our favourite Lake District Cream Tea spots, divided into the Lakes’ four regions, to help you get your sarnie-and-scone fix sorted. Whether it’s a simple bit of scran or a special treat occasion, there are plenty of wonderful afternoon tea spots to pick from, from Windermere to Keswick, Bassenthwaite to Ullswater!
The only problem now? You might be spoilt for choice!
North Lake District: Afternoon Tea in Keswick & Cockermouth
Lodore Falls Afternoon Tea
Lodore Falls is a luxury Four Star hotel set on the banks of Lake Derwentwater, offering stunning views over it. Offering afternoon tea in the Lake View Restaurant, the hotel encourages you to make the most of this wonderful landscape throughout the seasons, from the deep browns of dried ferns against blue skies in the winter to the dazzling sun and verdant slopes of summer.
Served from midday until 4.30pm, the relaxing atmosphere of the Lake View Restaurant is perfect for enjoying a Lakeside afternoon tea treat, and from mid-November until early January they serve a festive afternoon tea. Their full afternoon tea is served from 2.30 – 5pm, and features classics such as ‘smoked salmon, compressed cucumber and dill, cream cheese on multigrain bread’, ‘local strong cheddar cheese & caramelised onion muffin’, and ‘savoury choux buns’ as well as a selection of five handmade cakes and a freshly baked plain and fruit scone, with butter, clotted cream, and Wild & Fruitful strawberry jam.
Choose from their tea selection or opt for filter coffee to complement your afternoon tea, for £32 per person. Or, choose their prosecco afternoon tea (featuring a 200ml bottle of Ti Amo Prosecco) for £40.75.
Lodore Falls Hotel & Spa
Derwentwater, Keswick, CA12 5UX
Armathwaite Hall Afternoon Tea
Afternoon tea at Armathwaite Hall has all the pomp and ceremony you’d hope for from such a glorious and imposing, yet comfortable and welcoming building.
Armathwaite Hall has embraced the classic afternoon tea, whilst also elevating it. Think freshly-made sarnies, homemade cakes and biscuits, beautiful fresh scones, and the best tea from Kenya, India, and China. You’ll enjoy a selection of delicate savoury finger sandwiches and pastries first. Then they’ll serve up a mouth-watering selection of sweet cakes and pastries, alongside your choice of a plain or fruited scone, served as tradition requires – with strawberry jam and clotted cream! Choose between tea or coffee.
Both vegan afternoon tea and coeliac afternoon tea options are available in this Lake District gem given prior notice upon booking.
Served from 12.30-5pm, prices are £31.50 per person for regular Afternoon Tea, with Champagne Afternoon Tea available for £42.
Armathwaite Hall Hotel & Spa
Bassenthwaite Lake Keswick Cumbria, CA12 4RE
West Lake District: Afternoon Tea in St Bees & Ravenglass
Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway Afternoon Tea
A West Lake District experience not to be missed! Enjoying a traditional afternoon tea aboard the historic steam train, for a full-line return journey, is a brilliant way to take in the spectacular setting of the West Lakes.
All about the experience, this basic Cream Tea is served up at Dalegarth station cafe, and comprises a selection of sarnies, quiche, and sausage roll bites as well as home-baked fruit scones (with the obligatory butter, jam & clotted cream), a cake selection, and tea or coffee.
Prices start from £60 for two.
Consider an upgrade to the exclusive “Ruth Directors Saloon”, where for £120 you will arrive at Ravenglass Station and board your own “Ruth” compartment for the return railway journey up the line, whilst enjoying a scrumptious cream tea onboard.
Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway,
Ravenglass, Cumbria, CA18 1SW
VeeVa! Cockermouth Afternoon Tea
VeeVa! in Cockermouth is a great, informal spot to head to for a bite of afternoon tea. Freshly making and baking all of their food offerings daily, VeeVa! Serves an afternoon tea full of freshly made sandwiches, mixed salad, homemade savoury nibbles, sweet treats, and homemade cakes, alongside delicious coffee or tea. They can also cater to dietary requirements.
What makes Veeva! stand out from the crowd as an afternoon tea spot is how they are housed in Mitchell’s Auctions, recognised as Cumbria’s leading Fine Art & Antiques salesroom! So for anyone interested in diving into the world of a live auction, or just spending an afternoon taking in the great selection of Fine Art and Antiques on display, VeeVa! Makes for a great day out.
49 Station Rd, Cockermouth CA13 9PZ
South Lake District: Afternoon Tea in Windermere & Ambleside
Wild Boar Afternoon Tea
Enjoy afternoon tea in one of Windermere’s oldest hotels at the Wild Boar – but with a twist! Instead of the traditional afternoon tea we know and love, the Wild Boar has mixed it up to offer something new and just as exciting, mirroring its essence as a traditional inn. Enjoy flavoursome savoury delights such as ‘Mini Beef Slider with horseradish mayo & crispy onions’, ‘Mad Pig Ale Battered Monkfish & Chips with tartar sauce’, and ‘smoked Pigs in Blankets with apple sauce & mustard mayo’. They couldn’t stray too far from tradition, though – it finishes off with the obligatory scones, jam and cream (after ‘Zingy Lemon Meringue Tart’ or ‘Chocolate Brownie’.
Wild Boar Afternoon Teas can be adapted to be Gluten Free, and they also offer a Vegetarian Afternoon Tea.
Your £35 Afternoon Tea includes a glass of something fizzy – a pure Prosecco, Prosecco Rosé, Bellini, or a Beer Bat, featuring three mini Wild Boar ales!
The Wild Boar
Crook Road, Windermere
Cumbria LA23 3NF
Cedar Manor Afternoon Tea
This boutique hotel in Windermere offers the beloved British afternoon tea as it should be; traditional and completely home-made. It’s everything you’d want from an Afternoon Tea in Windermere; they only use produce carefully selected from the best local suppliers, keeping the menu seasonal and fresh.
As well as warm savouries, their Afternoon Tea menu includes ‘Cartmel Valley Smoked Salmon with lemon butter on granary bread’, ‘Traditional Ham with honey mustard dressing on brioche’, ‘Egg Mayonnaise with watercress on white bread’, and ‘cucumber with cream cheese and dill on white bread’, accompanied by sweet treats such as ‘Freshly-baked buttermilk Plain and Earl Grey fruit scones served with Cornish clotted cream and homemade strawberry preserve’, and an assortment of Afternoon Tea pastries, desserts, and cakes.
Traditional Afternoon Tea is £28.50 per person. Include a glass of Prosecco for £34.50 per person, or add a half bottle of Boizel Champagne for £32.00.
Ambleside Road, Windermere, LA23 1AX
Storrs Hall Afternoon Tea
Located in Bowness-in-Windemere with views across the Lake, Storrs Hall offers Afternoon Tea in the traditional manner, with an eye for delicate neatness. Served daily 12.30-4.30pm, take your afternoon tea in one of the hotel’s comfortable lounges, or in the bright conservatory. From either, you can take in the surrounding countryside and lake views.
Traditional but with a touch of luxury, the Storrs Hall afternoon tea serves up delicate finger sandwiches with light and flavoursome fillings, as well as delicious cakes and freshly baked scones. Think Duck Egg Mayonnaise on Brioche, Poached Salmon & Creme Fraiche on Treacle Bread, and Crispy Plaice Goujon with Tartare Sauce for savouries, followed by cakes such as Pistachio and Rose Sponge, Lemon Meringue Choux Bun and Raspberry & White Chocolate Macaron.
Afternoon Tea costs £29.95 per person. A glass of Prosecco can be added for £8.75, a glass of Champagne for £15.00.
Bowness-on-Windermere, Cumbria, LA23 3LG, UK
Fizzy Tarte Afternoon Tea
Afternoon Tea at this Windermere Cafe is delicious and easygoing. Modern decor, great lighting, and fantastic service shake-up Afternoon Tea’s ‘fuddy-duddy’ reputation and give it an injection of modernity. That said, they go all-in with the classic afternoon tea components. Book for two and enjoy eight finger sandwiches with a selection of fillings, artisan crisps, two savoury bites, eight luxurious (and award-winning) patisserie, and two warm locally-made scones, alongside a pot of tea or coffee.
The Classic Afternoon Tea is £28 per person with £5 supplement for the Gluten Free version. The Luxury Afternoon Tea features all the above and a glass of rosé prosecco, for £34.00 per person.
Served 12-4.30 pm.
The Fizzy Tarté
18 Ash St, Bowness-on-Windermere, Windermere, Cumbria, LA23 3EB
East Lake District: Afternoon Tea in Penrith & Glenridding
Inn on the Lake Afternoon Tea
Inn on the Lake is an Ullswater gem, nestled into the spectacular town of Glenridding. Afternoon tea at Inn on the Lake is a relaxing affair, whether you choose the cosy atmosphere of the Orangery or the Lounges. Enjoying afternoon tea in front of the roaring open fires come wintertime is a joy (they even serve a festive-inspired afternoon tea from mid-November until early January). Through the warmer months, choose to sit in the gardens or large outdoor terrace, to take in the beautiful Lake views.
This afternoon tea offers all the classics, with a little twist and interest. You’ll still get your scones, but enjoy more unusual tastes, too. Think ‘compressed cucumber, rocket pesto & cream cheese on multigrain bread’, ‘deli-style pastrami on brioche slider bun’, and ‘smoked trout mousse en croute’, alongside scones, passionfruit & poppyseed drizzle, lemon tart, and strawberry ‘trifle’.
£32 per person, including Savoury Board, a three-tiered cake stand, and tea or coffee. Add fizz for an extra charge.
Inn on the Lake
Ullswater, Glenridding, CA11 0PE