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Things to do in Bardsea, Cumbria

Bardsea is a small coastal village in Cumbria located on the north shore of Morecambe Bay, with spectacular views over the bay.

© khrizmo via Depositphotos

Things to See and Do in Bardsea

Bardsea Alpacas

© Bardsea Alpacas

Bardsea Alpacas offer visitors a range of unforgettable experiences with their adorable alpacas - something animal lovers won't want to miss.

Meet and Greet lets you get up-close to the alpacas and get to know them.

An Alpaca Walk which includes Meet & Greet allows visitors to walk an alpaca

© Bardsea Alpacas

Picnic with the Alpacas and Llamas (available in spring and summer only) lets a group of up to 5 people enjoy a picnic at one of the outside picnic benches with the alpacas.

All alpaca experiences need to be booked in advance.


Birkrigg Stone Circle

View from Birkrigg
View from Birkrigg © William Ross via Flickr

Walk up to Birkrigg Common from the village and you'll find a small prehistoric double circle of stones thought to be more than 3,000 years old!

You'll be rewarded with lovely views of the village, and out over Morecambe Bay.

Chapel Island

When you look out over Morecambe Bay from Bardsea, you'll see Chapel Island - a limestone outcrop about a mile from the shore.

Chapel Island
Chapel Island © Reading Tom via Flickr

In the 14th century Augustinian canons from Conishead Priory built a chapel on the island, hence the name, although nothing remains of the building today.

Although it's possible to walk to the overgrown island at low tide, it's not recommended due to Morecambe Bay's notorious quicksands and the Ulverston Channel that flows between the shore and the island.

Holy Trinity Church

© Reading Tom via Flickr

The Holy Trinity Church in Bardsea dates from 1843 and was designed by George Webster.

With excellent views over Morecambe Bay it's very picturesque and worth visiting when you're in the village.

Holy Trinity Church

Sea Wood

Sea Wood is a 58-acre woodland located southwest of Bardsea just off the coast road, on the shore of Morecambe Bay.

© alx_chief via Flickr

The woodland is managed by the Woodland Trust and is one of their top 10 bluebell woods - visit between mid-April and early June to have the best chance of seeing the bluebells flowering.

Sea Wood is an ideal location to walk your dog, or just appreciate the natural woodland setting.


Ulverston Golf Course

Just 5 minutes walk from Bardsea you'll find Ulverston Golf Club which is surely one of the most picturesque courses in England, offering classic parkland golf in spectacular surroundings.

© Stephen Needs via Flickr

Ulverston is a par 71 course designed by H.S. Colt, and the club welcomes visitors.

Buggies can be hired between April and October and trolleys are available to hire from the Pro Shop.

The clubhouse has stunning views, a well-stocked bar, and food includes a comprehensive breakfast menu, lounge specials including burgers and paninis and a range of teas and coffees.


Places to Eat or Stay

The Ship Inn

The Ship Inn on Main Street is a traditional inn offering wholesome, delicious food, a wide range of hot and cold drinks, and comfortable en-suite accommodation.

Breakfast is available every day and guests can choose from a Full-English or continental breakfast, both with high-quality, locally-sourced ingredients.

Lunches and evening meals are available from Tuesday-Sunday.

Free parking and Wi-Fi is included with your stay.

Chill & Grill Ice Cream

Conveniently located near the beach, Chill & Grill Ice Cream offer delicious home-made ice creams, scones, cakes and bean-to-cup fresh coffee.

© Reading Tom via Flickr

There's also a great range of lunches including paninis, toasted bagels, freshly made snadwiches, burgers and a homemade soup of the day.

Vegetarian options are available, and some outside seating is provided.



There aren't many shops in Bardsea itself, so your best bet for shopping is to visit the nearby market town of Ulverston.

Ulverston © Simon Cotterill via Flickr

Its cobbled streets are home to a good range of small independent shops that are a pleasure to explore.

There are several gift shops, florists, jewellers, a couple of book shops, two cycle shops a photography shop, newsagents and chemists shops including a branch of Boots.

Food shops include several bakeries, traditional butchers, greengrocers and a sweet shop as well as branches of Co-op Food, Tesco Express, Marks & Spencer Food and Aldi.

Ulverston is a market town with its charter granted by Edward I in 1280. Today there's an indoor market hall - which is a practical answer for comfortable shopping in the unpredictable Cumbrian weather.



Places to Visit Nearby

Laurel & Hardy Museum

In Ulverston, the birthplace of Stan Laurel, fans of classic movies will be delighted to visit the world's only Laurel & Hardy Museum.

Laurel and Hardy Statue
Laurel and Hardy Statue © Lynn Rainard via Flickr

Located in a 1930s cinema, the museum has grown from Bill Cubin's private collection to a whole museum now run by Bill's grandson, including films shown on the big cinema screen.


Holker Hall and Gardens

The Gallery
The Gallery © Holkham Estates

Only 4 miles from Bardsea, Holker Hall and Gardens is well worth visiting. There are 23 acres of beautifully kept gardens.

Holker Hall itself has never been bought or sold, but passed through the generations of three families with each one making changes or additions and adding to the history and interest of the hall.

There are many beautiful and historic rooms to enjoy including the Drawing Room, Billiard Room, Library, Dining Room, Queen Mary's Bedroom, the Wedgwood Dressing Room and many more.

Stop for refreshment at the Courtyard Café with its range of delicious food made from the best local and seasonal ingredients, including the renowned Holker Afternoon Tea (24 hours notice required).



Q. Can you swim at Bardsea Beach?

A. No, there are strong currents at Bardsea that make the sea unsafe for swimming.

Q. Is Bardsea Beach Dog Friendly?

A. Yes, there are no restrictions on dogs at Bardsea beach.

Bardsea History

Bardsea was mentioned in the Domesday Book and remained a small farming and fishing village until the 19th century.

Queen Marys Bedroom
Queen Marys Bedroom © Holkham Estates

During the industrial revolution, iron ore was mined in nearby Furness and shipped on steamers from Bardsea to Liverpool and Fleetwood.

This trade stopped when the Ulverston Canal and the Furness Railway were built.

Useful Links

Urswick, Bardsea and Stainton Parish Council:


Map of Bardsea

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