The Lake District, Cumbria’s most popular “paid-for” attraction is adding a new cruising option to its growing range of services.

After cruises on Windermere Lake Cruises’ famous ‘steamers’ resumed last weekend, smaller groups are being invited to enjoy England’s longest lake in the privacy of one of the attraction’s smaller, traditional wooden launches.

The privately-skippered traditional wooden launch vessels are available from Waterhead and Bowness, which can be hired by the hour for larger family groups or those in social “bubbles” who are able to travel together and therefore do not need to socially distance from each other.

Groups of up to 12 passengers can hire each vessel for just £200 per hour, which, if 12 people sail, works out at just over £16.60 per person.

Groups of more than 12 passengers can sail for £250 per hour, with a maximum capacity of 25 – so a full group of 25 would pay just £10 each.

The wooden launches can now be pre-booked by all, by calling 015394 43360.

All passengers will by law be required to wear face coverings whilst on these vessels.

Windermere Lake Cruises Sales & Marketing Director Jennifer Cormack, said: “As we continue to resume our popular services, we wanted to make Windermere as accessible as possible to everybody.

"To that end, we have launched a range of options to reflect this and continue to work hard to inspire confidence among our passengers.

"We have been working hard to take every possible step to make our experiences Covid-secure and as part of this, we recognise that we must offer the widest possible range of options to our passengers.

“The safety and comfort of our passengers and staff remains our top priority and we will continue to monitor changes in requirements and will vary our policies, procedures and operations to ensure continued compliance with Covid guidelines. This private hire option is an adapted product which gives our guests a new way of sailing on Windermere that best suits their needs and we’re looking forward to welcoming them on-board.”

Meanwhile, the attraction’s famous ‘steamers’ now depart regularly for 60-minute sailings every day, on circular routes from Bowness and Ambleside.

Cruises will also depart from Lakeside departing every 90 minutes, with an option of buying a combined ticket for passengers to enjoy a journey on the Lakeside and Haverthwaite Railway.

Seats must be booked in advance online, and once seated, passengers are asked not to change seats during their journey.

Another hugely popular option is Windermere Lake Cruises’ fleet of smaller, self-drive motorboats which can be booked online, and are ideal for small families/social bubbles.