Loweswater CA13 0RU
You really have to be looking for the Kirkstile to find it – tucked away up tiny country lanes at the back of Loweswater, one of the Lake District’s lesser-known stretches of water. The beer garden has a terrific view straight up to the summit of Melbreak, the local peak, which you can climb in an hour from the inn. Then head inside for superior bar meals (smoked chicken salad, grilled trout, fell-bred steak or slow-roast lamb) and a range of award-winning own-brew beers, served in an age-old bar with all sorts of nook and crannies, low beams and well-worn oak furniture. There are also cosy guest rooms upstairs and in the annex.