Beyond Howtown on the southern shores of Ullswater, a steep, switchback road leads into the hidden valley of Martindale. Park at the ‘new’ church of St Peter’s to explore this sublime landscape, including the side valleys of Fusedale and Boredale, and the hilltop viewpoint of Hallin Fell. The ‘old’ church of St Martin’s is well worth a look. Inside, the font is thought to be part of a Roman altar, possibly from a wayside shrine on High Street, the Roman road that crossed the fells nearby. Outside, there’s a sprawling yew tree said to be 1300 years old.
The fells at the head of Martindale, centred on The Nab, are home to England’s oldest herd of native red deer.