Crosthwaite. The Punch Bowl Inn and Restaurant

It’s not just damsons that are worthy of purple prose in the Lyth Valley. Visitors and critics alike are full of praise for this 300 year old pub which stands on the edge of Crosthwaite.

‘This smart village inn has a deserved reputation for good food and cosseting bedrooms,’ declares the Good Hotel Guide 2022, describing the Lyth Valley as a ‘quietly beautiful area of the Lake District’.

The Punch Bowl was also a main entry in the 2020 editions of the Good Food Guide (there was no 2021 edition) and Good Pub Guide. In the latter it has been Cumbria Dining Pub of the Year on five occasions while it also received the Front of House Team of the Year at the Estrella Damm Top 50 Gastropubs Awards in 2019.

Upstairs from the bar, two AA Rosette restaurant and two lounges are nine ‘contemporary-country style' bedrooms, all with good size, underfloor heated bathrooms, roll top baths and separate showers. 

They’re all individual in character - ‘beautifully designed,’ says the Good Pub Guide 2021’ - so between them you’ll find hand-blocked wallpaper, exposed beams, silk curtains, plush fabrics and deep set windows. Noble, the biggest bedroom, takes up the whole of the third floor.

The names of the rooms are a roll call of local vicars (St Mary’s Church is next door), such as Heelis, Hebblewhite, Strickland and Danson. So for once in the Lyth Valley it’s Danson not damson. 

Punch Bowl Inn, Crosthwaite, Lyth Valley LA8 8HR: 015395 68237, Cream tea on arrival. Crosthwaite is just off the A5074, south east of Bowness-on-Windermere. Check out the ‘Punch Bowl at Home’ service, Punch Bowl meal boxes delivered nationwide. Three course weekly menu for two people.

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