If you’re looking for stunning coastal views, a rich history, cultural exploration, natural beauty, fantastic shopping, and delicious food and drink, look no further! The Furness Peninsula is perfect for a great day out (or more), with plenty to see and do while you’re there.

Getting there is part of the experience

The A590 is often the road of choice for those travelling into Barrow, taking drivers down the centre of the Furness peninsula. However, why not take the scenic route (and when we say scenic, we really do mean it!) and opt for the A5087, locally known as The Coast Road?

This stunning stretch of road branches off the A590 at Ulverston: within a few minutes, you’ll find yourself at Bardsea before travelling on towards Barrow-in-Furness. The road hugs the south-east coast of the Furness peninsula to give you a rarely uninterrupted view of Morecambe Bay. There are plenty of places to safely pull over and enjoy the view, making this a simply stunning way to travel.

Go car free from Roa Island to Piel Island

Go car free from Roa Island to Piel Island

After a spectacular drive, taking in expansive bay views and fresh sea air, you’ll find yourself at Roa Island. Once there, it’s time to ditch the car in the free car park next to the Roa Island Boat Club, and hop on a ferry to nearby Piel Island.

The Piel Ferry transports visitors from Roa Island to Piel Island from Easter to October, weather and tide permitting. Once on dry land, there’s plenty to explore: this small outpost near the town centre packs plenty into its 50 acres, from a cosy pub popular with locals; to a 14th century castle rich in history.

It’s at this castle where we begin our tour of the island. Built in the 14th century, the castle’s main purpose was to protect Barrow-in-Furness from pirates and Scottish raids. Today, it is looked after by English Heritage and open to explore during daylight hours. Discover little hideaways, perfect for picnics; and for little ones to imagine being real-life knights.

Then, it’s time to head to the pub for a refreshing pint before walking along the shores of the island (or even around its entire perimeter, if you’re feeling adventurous!). Along the way, search for shells and other reminders of the watery world which surrounds it. 

Note: the Piel Ferry runs daily from Easter to October, 10am - 4pm. Keep an eye on their Facebook page for service updates and information.

Discover Walney Island

Discover Walney Island

From Roa Island to Walney Island, it’s a short 15 minute drive. At 11 miles long, a trip to Walney is a day out in itself - and with two nature reserves, as well as sandy beaches, there’s lots to explore!

The North Walney Nature Reserve is part of the Duddon Estuary Site of Special Scientific Interest, known for its natterjack toads and birds including pintail, red knot and common redshank. 

South Walney Nature Reserve is also great for bird watchers, with breeding eider duck, oystercatchers and migratory curlew to name a few. It is also home to the only grey seal colony in Cumbria, and the Piel Ferry runs seal watching trips throughout the year. 

Looking for somewhere to stay? Check out accommodation in Barrow here.

Explore the high streets of Barrow-in-Furness

Explore the high streets of Barrow-in-Furness

The Capital of the Furness peninsula, the historic town of Barrow is best known for its shipbuilding heritage. Visit the Dock Museum to delve deeper into its seafaring history; there’s also a cafe and playground on site.

In the town centre, an array of wonderful independent shops and high street brands await on Barrow’s high streets. Grab a coffee and indulge in a little retail therapy: the indoor market is a must visit, with its notoriously friendly stall holders and wide variety of produce on offer.

Come evening, enjoy dinner in town before catching a show at The Forum opposite the impressive Town Hall building: this local theatre boasts a fantastic programme packed with music, comedy and drama.

Discover Furness Abbey

Discover Furness Abbey

Just a ten minute drive from Barrow’s town centre is Furness Abbey: founded in the 12th century, and once the wealthiest monastery in north-west England. Today, its impressive remains are open to the public and stand as a reminder of the events of 1537, when it was destroyed during King Henry VIII’s religious reforms. From Furness Abbey, head to the north-western peninsula’s coast to find Roanhead beach and sand dunes, alongside the Sandscale Haws Nature Reserve.  

Supported by
Supported by the European Regional Development Fund and HM Government

Please follow HM Government COVID-19 safety guidelines when you visit. Support our local shops and businesses by being mindful of social distancing and wearing a mask in enclosed spaces. Wash your hands often using soap and water and dry them thoroughly, and where available, use hand-sanitiser as you enter and leave shops. Enjoy your visit and stay safe!

The Welcome Back to High Streets Project is funded by the European Regional Development Fund and HM Government as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020. The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government is the Managing Authority for European Regional Development Fund. Established by the European Union, the European Regional Development Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations. For more information visit https://www.gov.uk/european-growth-funding.




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