The Beautiful Eden Valley

The Eden District is a local authority covering Alston, Appleby, Kirkby Stephen and Penrith and surrounding areas. Its council is based in Penrith and it is is named after the River Eden which flows north through the district toward Carlisle.

Lying with the Pennines to the east and the Lake District Fells to the west, the beautiful Eden Valley around the River Eden is a mix of lush green countryside, traditional towns and attractive sandstone villages some dating back to Viking times. To the south are the peaceful Howgill Fells, a favourite of Wainwright.

The River Eden which has its source in the Mallerstang Valley, is one of the finest salmon and trout rivers in the North of England and you can enjoy some great riverside walks. Look out for Lacy’s Caves, carved out of sandstone right on the riverbank or go in search of the Eden Benchmarks, ten intriguing sculptures in dramatic settings which act as welcome seats.

The most scenic railway in England, the Settle to Carlisle line runs through the Eden Valley with stations at Appleby and Kirkby Stephen, Penrith, a welcoming market town makes an ideal base to explore the area. Brough, near Kirkby Stephen is an old coaching village, rich in history, while Orton and Tebay is an area of striking landscapes, local produce, heritage and intriguing myths and legends.  Shap – famous for its granite offers great walking and the historic Shap Abbey.


The Eden Valley, with its attractive scenery and range of attractions, still remains relatively under the radar compared to its Western Lake District neighbour. But we think this quieter, characterful valley is the perfect place to visit for those seeking a bit of tranquillity. With the Pennines to the east, the Lake District fells to the west, and charming market towns and traditional villages dotted about the countryside, The Eden Valley is a spectacular spot for a holiday! From ancient ruins and grand country houses to wildlife and outdoor adventures, here’s our run down of some of the best things to do in the area.