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Coniston Water is one of our favourite lakes in the Lake District, and is accessible from many areas. On this occasion we decided to have a picnic day, based near the Bluebird Cafe in Coniston itself.
Drive through Coniston village, then take Lake Road, which leads down to the shoreline, past the school. A postcode for your satnav is LA21 8AN. And the grid reference is 308970 on OS map OL7.
You can park very close to the water. There are some free parking spots, the rest is paid parking. Charges (correct Aug-17) are £3 for the first 2 hours, then 40p for every 20 minutes thereafter to a maximum charge of £8 for the day.
The facilities here are great, as you have access to toilets (including baby change facilities and disabled), the superb Bluebird Cafe with its extensive daytime menu and picnic tables.
We wandered north eastwards, along and round the shoreline a little way, to escape the crowds. The beach is expansive and there is plenty of space for everyone and their picnics!
You can hire motor boats, rowing boats, open Canadian canoes, sit on top kayaks, paddle boards and sailing dinghies. As well as a range of bikes for all the family. There’s also access to the Steam Yacht Gondola and the Coniston Launch if you fancied a tour of the lake.