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Best lakes to visit in the UK for days out this summer

Simon Calder’s Travel

The UK’s landscape boasts a beautiful coastline and rolling countryside, plus plentiful cities, towns and picturesque villages. There are scenic spots to explore in every corner, both on your own doorstep and further afield – from secluded bays to parks with fascinating histories.

While many of us flock to the beach as our first UK travel choice during warmer weather, lakes have become an increasingly popular place. The country is spoilt for choice: there are over 40,000 lakes in the UK, so there’s something however you wish to spend your day out. While the Lake District may be an obvious option, you’ll discover lakes and lochs worth visiting across the British Isles from the Scottish Highlands right down to Cornwall.

There’s often plenty to do around the banks and on the water – though always remember that some of the lakes have rules around entering them, so always check local restrictions (and make sure its safe to swim if you’re allowed).

We’ve rounded up the best UK lakes to visit; add them to your travel and day trip itinerary next time the British summertime cranks up the heat.

Serpentine Lake, London

Rent a pedalo and explore London’s Serpentine Lake (Getty Images)

London’s Serpentine Lake in Hyde Park is known for its open water lido where the Serpentine Swimming Club gathers. To explore the lake without getting wet, you can hire a pedalo for 30-60 minutes. Picnic in the park or stop off at the Serpentine Bar and Kitchen or the Serpentine Lido Cafe for al fresco drinks and dining while the sun shines.

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