Activities available locally include walking, mountain biking, canoeing, and climbing. There are many excellent walking routes in the area, both on tarmac roads, forest tracks and footpaths over the fells. Thornthwaite sits beneath Whinlatter Forest, which is great for walking, and has trails for mountain biking. Whinlatter is also a good place to see Red Squirrels and to view the Ospreys, which nest near by every year. Beautiful and spectacular scenery to photograph, paint – or to simply sit back and enjoy!
A short stroll through the woodland path takes you to Braithwaite village, where there are 3 good Pubs: The Coledale Inn, The Royal Oak and The Middle Ruddings. All serve good quality food at competitive prices. Dogs are allowed in if you go for a bar meal at The Coledale Inn. There is also a very comfortable beer garden, with wonderful views of Skiddaw and the surrounding fells.
Braithwaite also has a General Store for newspapers, and basic groceries. It is open 7 days a week.
Keswick is the nearest town, and it lies on the shores of Derwentwater. There is a Co-op supermarket, and a Booths supermarket. The latter being the larger, and a very modern store. Booths sells a lot of locally sourced products.
Keswick has a variety of shops, such as WH Smith’s, Rohan, Fat Face and White Stuff. There are also lots of outdoor clothing shops, such as George Fishers, Cotswolds and Mountain Warehouse. And, an abundance of places to eat, with lots of hotels, pubs and cafes – Kat’s Kitchen is recommended – particularly for Vegans and Vegetarians.
Keswick also has a library, which has computer and internet access facilities, and the excellent Theatre by the Lake, with productions on throughout the year. The ‘Summer Season’, which boasts six plays (shown individually), is recommended, as is the Christmas production shown throughout December and January (booking advisable). There is also a cinema, which is over 100 years old. It is very well run by a local family, and shows a good selection of films which change weekly.