Rydal Mount, in the heart of the English Lake District, lies between Ambleside and Grasmere and commands glorious views of Windermere, Rydal Water and the surrounding fells. This was William Wordsworth’s best loved family home for the greater part of his life from 1813 to his death in 1850 at the age of 80. The house, which was a focus for romantic literature, continues to be owned by the Wordsworth family and retains the feel of a lived in family home.
The Gardens are wonderful and include many little hidden spots that will make you gasp in delight as you explore. Check the video we made recently of a secret waterfall and rock pool!
The house dates from the 16th century, although was enlarged over the intervening centuries, and even by Wordsworth himself. It contains a selection of the family’s prized possessions and portraits.
Also to be seen are the family bedrooms of William and Mary, Dorothy, and Dora, and Wordsworth’s attic study, which he used when he was Poet Laureate. The house contains portraits, personal possessions and first editions of the poet’s work.
The dining room, part of the old Tudor cottage whose records go back to 1574, contrasts pleasingly with the larger proportions of the drawing room and library, added in 1750.
Both Grasmere and Windermere lakes can be seen from the hillside grounds of Rydal Mount. William designed the layout of the gardens at Rydal, and he often said that those grounds were his office as opposed to the spacious office/writing room in his house. On the high side of the grounds, tucked away from the main house, but overlooking both the grounds and the two nearby lakes, he built the “Writing Hut” where he spent most of his writing time. This hut consisted merely of a bench with a small roof, but it provided shelter from the frequent rains and escape from the house. He lived the rest of his life there until his death at the age of 80, and he frequently was visited by Samuel Taylor Coleridge who would walk down from his home in Keswick.
The Wordsworths continued to rent this property for 46 years, following William’s death in 1850 to the death of his wife, Mary, in 1859.
Rydal Mount was acquired in 1969 by Mary Henderson (née Wordsworth), William’s great great granddaughter. It remains in the ownership of the Wordsworth family, and has been opened to the public since 1970.
Wordsworth was a keen landscape gardener, and the four acre garden remains much as he designed it. It consists of rare shrubs, fell-side terraces, lawns, rock pools and an ancient mound. The mound dates from the 9th Century, when it was used as a site for a Beacon Fire to warn of coming Border Raiders.
In season the daffodils, bluebells and rhododendrons produce a spectacular display of colour. A leaflet is available describing a walk round the garden, and highlighting 26 plants and trees of interest. From the summerhouse is a stunning view over Rydal Water.
After his daughter Dora died in 1847, William went down to a small field between the house and the main road, and together with his wife, sister and gardener, planted hundreds of daffodils as a memorial to Dora.
Located during the Summer in what was originally the saddlery over the coach house, The Tearoom serves a selection of homemade cakes and fair trade drinks.
TICKET PRICES & EXCLUSIVE TOURS
Further your understanding of William Wordsworth by participating in a guided tour around Rydal Mount. Or walk in the garden and see the views of Windermere and Rydal Water.
Guided House & Garden Tickets
Guided House & Garden Tickets for Children aged 6-12
Guided House & Garden Tickets
Group of 4 people £45
Garden only (self guided)
Family Garden Ticket (self guided) (2 adults + children)
Family ticket Garden (2 adults + children)
Cream Teas At 4.30pm every day. Includes a short talk on the house before the Cream Tea (2 small scones, Strawberry jam and clotted cream. Tea per person). £20 per person – minimum 2 people – maximum 6 people £25 per person – Cream Tea and a glass of prosecco.
Dinners Exclusive dinners in conjunction with Michelin starred chef – available from Summer 2021. Please contact us to book. (We’ll need to add the link to the booking page once I’ve got the platform to set that up for us.)
Ticket price includes a short talk on the house before the Cream Tea (2 small scones, Strawberry jam and clotted cream. Tea per person) which lasts for half an hour in Wordsworth’s Dining Room, and then you self-guide around the house and garden.