Lake District Camping, Mountain Biking & NKT International Buddhist Festival

We last camped three years ago. The three of us spent five nights squashed in my ‘3 man’ tent in the Lake District. It rained a lot, the tent leaked, I woke up to find my pillow was soaking wet and vowed that I would never camp again.

Three years later, here I am again, camping in the Lake District. It wasn’t exactly my preferred choice of accommodation but it was super cheap and all the B&Bs in the area were full (yep, as usual, I left planning to the last minute). 

We borrowed our friend’s slightly bigger tent and pitched it in the middle of a farmer’s field. After a night of relentless rain, I woke up to find that the rain had flooded in on my side of the tent and I was laying in a pool of water. You see, me & camping just don’t get along 🙁

But, despite the less than favourable camping experience, we had a fantastic time in the Lakes. Me & Lil’ L had a very special day at the NKT International Buddhist Festival in Ulverston. Thousands of people from all over the world attended the festival and the atmosphere was incredible. Everyone was so friendly. I never seen so many smiley faces 🙂

A lovely diary of the festival with video clips and photos is available at http://kadampafestivals.org/summer-2012/.

While we were at the festival, M went mountain biking. He had a fantastic day of exhilarating riding and beautiful scenery. 

Here are some of his favourite shots of the day…

When the three of us met up at the end of the day, we were buzzing from our experiences and had lots to chat about over dinner.  For our evening meals, we went to Ambleside which has an array of restaurants and cafes with menu options for vegetarians and vegans.

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 This small town has two highly popular vegetarian/vegan restaurants – Zeffirellis and Fellinis – and we sampled the menus in both.

The food was fantastic, especially in Fellinis. There are three dishes in particular that I’d like to try and re-create at home:
–  Sweet potato, broccoli and lentil sambar served with coriander and lime flatbread
– Chestnut, leek and wild mushroom filled pastry with baby roasted vegetables (Lil’ L loved this)
– Sweet potato and chickpea tagine with lemony couscous

We’re now back in the South where it’s actually been hot and sunny for a couple of days. It’s been perfect weather for the start of the Olympics. Let’s hope it continues!

I hope you’re having a great summer wherever you are. And if you’re camping somewhere in the UK, make sure you don’t forget your waterproofs. Next time I’m going to take waterproof pyjamas. Knowing my luck, I’ll need them 😉

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10 Comments

Filed under Biking, Buddhism & Meditation, Dinners, Vacations

10 Responses to Lake District Camping, Mountain Biking & NKT International Buddhist Festival

  1. Joni

    Hi Sharon

    Despite the weather, it seems that all three of you had a wonderful time in the lakes. The campsite looked a bit soggy!
    We stayed up late on Friday night to watch the Olympic opening ceremony, which was absolutely fab….. we Brits know how to put on a great show and with humour…..

    • The Olympic opening ceremony was amazing wasn’t it? I thought it was a bit bizarre to begin with… especially when Kenneth Branagh came out dressed as Brunel and read Shakespeare(!!) but I soon got into it. It was certainly unique and very ‘British’.

  2. Greendavid8

    Hope you found the stone circle near the Festival, too. 🙂

    I also went mountain-biking! All the way to the shop to buy slick tyres so I can blast down the road. Then back to the shop as I burst an inner tube with my tyre tool of choice – the very sharp screwdriver the box specifically tells you NOT to use! LOL 🙂

    So that’s two rides. That’s me done until next year.

    Y’know – there is a reason it’s called the ‘Lake’ District, kinda hinted in the title. It’s a bit like these people who buy a house in a place ending in ‘……..bridge’ or ‘….ford’ and then moan when the river decides to visit them at home!

    Waterproof pyjamas, eh – there could be a patent in that!

    • I didn’t even know about the stone circle! Will definitely hunt it out next time we go.
      Sounds like you’re as bad as me when it comes to following instructions. Luckily I’ve got a resident bike mechanic here, so I’ve never had to change a tyre myself and don’t know how to. Fingers crossed I never get a flat tyre when I’m out on my own otherwise I’m stuffed!

  3. Markio

    Lovely! I’m thinking about getting some huge ginger Highland Cattle for the garden. They can mow the grass for me.

  4. Sorry about the rain on your camping trip. Again! You were brave to try it again, and I”m sorry you were not rewarded very nicely!
    I have to say that I am in love with the cows you have in Great Britain! Aren’t they the cutest things ever? I would like one for a pet. When my friend lived in Scotland for a few years she would walk past a field of them every day on her way to work. She often took photos of them for me. 🙂
    I have been glued to the TV watching the Olympics and have enjoyed seeing and learning about London throughout.

    • Rain, rain, rain. That’s what I get everytime I check the weekly forecast for this area. I’ve never known a ‘summer’ like it 🙁 I’m now thinking that the couple of weeks of sunshine we had at Easter was the best we’re going to get!
      Those highland cattle are so cute aren’t they (despite they’re scarily sharp looking horns!) I really could do with one at home to keep the grass down. With all this rain, the garden is like a jungle!
      So glad to hear that you’re enjoying the Olympics 🙂 I haven’t been to the Olympic site myself, but I’d love to visit. It looks amazing! It really has regenerated what was previously a derelict part of London. Hopefully the legacy will live on long after the Olympics have finished.

  5. Sorry to hear that camping bested you again. I cannot stand camping (I don’t like sleeping on the ground and NEVER want to wake up in a puddle).
    However it seems it was all worth it at the festival, happy faces indeed.

    • You’re so right Rachel. The horrible camping experience was a small price to pay for such an amazing festival. It’s one that I’ll remember for the rest of my life 🙂

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