IN a post-lockdown world holiday goers are looking for two things: an escape that is safe but one that doesn’t lose its charm.

I must admit the thought of leaving the house had, up until recently, felt too daunting to consider, experiencing my first meal at a restaurant just two weeks before our stay in the Lakes.

For the past six months, my life has consisted of writing late into the evening at my DIY desk, family meals and home workouts.

However, as we entered the doors of The Wild Boar and spritzed our hands with sanitiser, it was as if the craziness of 2020 and tension in the world disappeared.

Tucked away in the Gilpin Valley with 72-acres of woodland to enjoy, it felt like the perfect retreat.

If I had to compare the Wild Boar experience to a sensation, it’s just like sitting in front of a log fire with a drink in hand. The whole stay was full of warmth and luxuriousness.

“Welcome to the Wild Boar, we hope you will enjoy your stay,” read a little note on the bed.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

The beauty of this hotel is not only in its chic decor but its attention to detail - whether it’s breakfast cooked exactly how you like it on a morning or the grand selection of coffees and teas in the room.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

On the first night we unpacked our bags and headed down to the bar, decked out with all the spirits and on draft drinks you could ever wish for.

We sat out on the terrace, listening to the evening song of the birds as the sun glimmered through the trees.

It was as though all the negativity of the world and covid-19 just drifted away. Although there were subtle reminders that coronavirus regulations were being carefully followed throughout the hotel.

It had only been a couple of hours since we arrived but we didn’t have a care in the world.

As the clock turned six, we were directed to our table at the hotel’s grill & smokehouse restaurant - so popular that we overheard a local pop by the bar to ask if he could book a table for his family. That’s always a good sign.

Our main order consisted of a flavoursome 14oz porterhouse steak served on the bone and classic burger with Cumbrian pancetta, Ogleshield cheese and chipotle burger sauce.

“I’m too full for a dessert,” I said, shortly before giving into refreshing, sweet sorbet.

The sticky toffee pudding which oozed a rich, glistening sauce also received a 10/10 review.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

Besides the stay, it was located in an ideal position for the most popular activities in the Lakes.

The villages of Bowness and Windermere are within a 3.3-mile drive from the hotel with the A591 and National Rail trains also nearby.

For walkers, I’d recommend joining the nearby Dalesway public footpath which takes you on a gentle, scenic stroll to Windermere and Bowness. It adds up to a 10-mile round route with views of lakes and glorious hills.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

What's more as you look around, the green hills and rocky features was art in real life. There were hints of pastoral scenes in Beatrix Potter's novels while a hidden lake on the walk back from Bowness wouldn't look out of place in a Monet painting.

For those who want to find out more about the children's book author, the Wild Boar is only an eight-minute drive away from The World of Beatrix Potter Attraction via the B5284 and A5074.

In what has been a tumultuous year for many people's mental health, the soft baa's of sheep in the fields and socially-distant hello's to other walkers acted like a cure.

Nothing beats an adventure in the wilderness, even when the rain is pouring down and mud has splashed all over your trousers.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

It is also a short driving distance to other much-loved destinations like Kendal, Ambleside and Grasmere, the home of poet William Wordsworth and its internationally famous gingerbread. Guests can also access the leisure club at nearby sister hotel Low Wood Bay, found in Windermere.

If you’d like to stay close to the hotel, the private woodland acts as a beautiful sanctuary to soothe the mind. Children will particularly enjoy the tree house towering over the woodland.

As you exit the back door, there is a selection of wellies for the whole family to use in case anyone forgets.

For those who like to bring their dog on holiday, the hotel is also incredibly pet friendly. The woodland has an enclosed area, meaning dogs can run around freely.

Even as guests without a furry friend, it was quite peaceful to watch different pooches doze off in the cosy seating area.

For me, The Wild Boar experience was nothing less than utter perfection. Sometimes all it takes is a special getaway to somewhere quiet with someone you love.

*The Wild Boar, Crook Road, Kendal. Tel: 0333 2203 108/ General enquiries: 015394 45225.

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Review by Natasha Meek