Ambleside, meaning "Shieling" or summer pasture by the riverbank, lies next to the northern shore of Lake Windermere, it is a small but busy Victorian town that is a popular spot with tourists, as it is an ideal location to base yourself to explore the lake district from.
The town centre has a host of craft shops, cafe's, guest houses and hotels, and on a wednesday you will find an open-air Market. One of the building's in Ambleside is said to be the most photographed building in the whole of the lake district - Bridge House. This building was originally used as an apple store, and was ingeniously built directly over Stock Beck on a stone arch in order to avoid paying any land tax! It is now however a National Trust Shop after being aquired by them in 1926. Although a small building it is said that it was once home to a family of eight! It is also a place that artists love to paint.
The great English landscape artist J.M.W Turner (1775 - 1851) painted it. Also, a few miles North of the town at Grasmere you will find Rydal Mount and Dove Cottage, two of the homes of the famous English poet William Wordsworth.