Claife Heights Viewing Station

Claife Heights Viewing Station

Location : Far Sawrey

Grid Ref : SD 387957
image of Claife Heights Viewing Station.

At Claife Heights, is Claife Station, built in the 1790s as a viewpoint where visitors could look at Windermere lake. It was most fashionable with tourists in the 1830s and 40s. The windows of the drawing room were the Station’s most celebrated feature; each had a different aspect, viewed through different coloured glass to enhance variations in weather and seasons. The tinted glass in these windows was intended to recreate lighting effects in the landscape. Yellow represented summer, orange was for autumn, light green for spring, and light blue for winter. There was also a dark blue for moonlight and a lilac tint to give the impression of a thunderstorm.

 Claife Station at Claife Heights.
The National Trust has now restored and re-opened this 19th-century, popular tourist attraction (images here yet to be updated). Back in the 1800s Claife Viewing Station was ‘the’ place to go on Windermere lake. It’s the National Trust’s aim to recreate part of the experience at this fascinating site.

There is now a café with a courtyard and a viewing platform on the site at the top of the hill at Claife.

Please note that there are no toilet facilities at the cafe or viewing station – these are 4 minutes walk away at the ferry landing.


You can walk to the viewing station along a footpath from the ferry crossing to Near Sawrey.

The Western shore of Windermere is perfect for a car-free adventure. Travel over on the ferry and check out Claife Viewing Station, then you can walk or cycle the 4 mile track from here, up to Wray Castle.

Claife Heights Viewing Station and the cafe in the courtyard are pet friendly.
2019 cafe opening times: from 10 am to 4 pm (4.30 pm in the summer).

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