Lake District Independent Hostels : Former youth hostel near Keswick in the Lake District


Derwentwater Independent Hostel, Barrow House, Borrowdale, Keswick, Cumbria, CA12 5UR

Family run and friendly, Derwentwater Independent Hostel is a Georgian mansion in 17 acres of grounds complete with its own waterfall. The glorious setting near the lake gives wonderful views of the surrounding mountains and is just 2 miles from Keswick. A great base for individuals, families, groups, family parties, reunions and conferences, the hostel has lounges, games rooms and free WiFi. It is licensed and offers a full meal service with a good reputation for home made food. Many of the spacious bedrooms have lovely original architecture. The grounds are teeming with wildlife including red squirrels, with plenty of space for children to play, football goals, picnic tables and open water access to launch canoes and boats onto the lake. Borrowdale has something for everyone; walks along the lake shore, challenging mountains, water sports, mountain biking, climbing, gorge scrambling and tourist attractions. Friendly staff are happy to help you organise your days. The C2C route passes close by.

This accommodation is featured on our map of the Lake District and here is its own website.
Derwentwater Independent Hostel | Lake District Independent Hostels : Former youth hostel near Keswick in the Lake District

Contact Derwentwater Independent Hostel

or call them on
01768 777246

Visit this accommodation's Website
Rooms & Beds:

88: 1×4, 2×5, 3×6, 3×8, 1×10, 1×22


All Year, 7am – 11pm.

Price per night:

From £21.00 (adult), £16.50 (child). Family rooms from £72 (for 4). Ask if you want a room for 2 or 3.


Advance booking recommended – especially for groups.


Two miles south of Keswick on the B5289 Borrowdale road. Hostel entrance is directly off the main road, 150m after the turning to Watendlath.

Public Transport:

Train to Penrith then X4 bus to Keswick. From Keswick take the launch to the Ashness gate jetty; 100m from hostel or bus 78 to hostel drive.

This accommodation is near mountains, is in a National Park, is available to individuals, gives a Best Price Guarantee, has a pub within walking distance and is on the C2C Cycle Route and the present or past youth hostel page.

News & Offers

Derwentwater Independent Hostel

Derwentwater Independent Hostel

…a gorgeous white mansion, with those tall elegant Georgian dimensions…

I’ve come over a bit Arthur Ransome thinking about Derwentwater Independent Hostel.

‘Why?’ I hear you ask. 

Although Coniston and Windermere are the acknowledged home of Ransome’s ‘Swallows and Amazons’ stories, Derwentwater chimes more to me. Not only are there the islands dotting the lake just begging to be rowed out to and explored (maybe even camped on with a little fire cooking our freshly caught fish); and the towering mountains with their spiderwebs of drystone walls, craggy tops and wooded slopes; but also there is Barrow House.

Barrow House is the home of Derwentwater Independent Hostel. I visited as a boy for an adventure holiday, much of which was spent red-armed and happy in boats on the lake. In its present incarnation, the hostel still offers outdoor and adventure activities. There can be fewer more pleasant locations to retire back to as well. It is a gorgeous white mansion, with those tall elegant Georgian dimensions, sitting right on the lakefront and bounded by woods, waterfall and grassed parkland. Certainly, if you’re not sweeping languidly around the grounds with a parasol, you should be pottering about in a boat. 

And so, whenever I think of Swallows and Amazons, in my mind I place the action around Barrow House. Not canonically accurate, I grant you, but deeply evocative in this writer’s mind’s eye.

Keswick Mountain Festival

Keswick Mountain Festival

The Cumbrian Group of Independent Hostels had a stand at the Keswick Mountain Festival last weekend. Big thanks to Sam and all at IHUK for their help and to everyone who came to chat at our stand. It’s a great festival so hope to see you there in 2017.

Contact Derwentwater Independent Hostel:

01768 777246MessageView website