Dove Cottage & The Wordsworth Museum

Dove Cottage, the family home of William Wordsworth
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This traditional Lakeland cottage was the home of the poet William Wordsworth. In 1799, Wordsworth fell in love with Dove Cottage and Grasmere whilst on a walking tour of the Lake District and within a few months had set up home here with his sister, Dorothy. It was whilst living here that Wordsworth produced the most famous and best-loved of his poems and Dorothy wrote fascinating Grasmere journals.

In this inspiring landscape of lakes and fells, largely unspoilt since Wordsworth’s time, it’s easy to understand why he called this valley the ‘calmest, fairest spot of earth’.

An entertaining guided tour of Dove Cottage gives a vivid impression of what day-to-day life would have been like for Wordsworth and his family, as well as providing the opportunity to soak up the unique and creative atmosphere of the cottage.

Afterwards, take a stroll through the delightful fell-side garden behind the cottage, which Wordsworth referred to as a ‘little domestic slip of mountain’. The garden has been restored to the half-wild state that Wordsworth and Dorothy lovingly created from local plants and materials. It was a place of peace and inspiration for Wordsworth, who would often compose poetry outdoors.

Through an incredible collection of original letters, journals and poems, the Wordsworth Museum tells Wordsworth’s remarkable life story: his tragic childhood, his travels through the French revolution, his radical ideas which remain so relevant today, and how he changed literature forever.

Venue Type:

Museum, Historic house or home, Gallery, Association or society, Heritage site, Library, Archive, Garden, parklands or rural site

Opening hours

Open daily 1 March – 31 October 2018 9.30am – 5.30pm.
Last admission to Dove Cottage is at 5pm.

1 November – 23 December 10am – 4.30pm.
Last admission to Dove Cottage is at 4pm.

Closed on Tuesdays during December.

Please check our website or phone for details.

Admission charges

Adult: £8.95 / Student: £7.25 / Child: free
Patrons and Friends: free
National Art Pass: free


  • National Art Pass
Getting there

The car park for Dove Cottage & The Wordsworth Museum are located on the A591, the main Kendal–Keswick road through the central Lake District. Look for the big blue sign just south of the Grasmere mini-roundabout.

The entire collection of this museum is a Designated Collection of national importance.

The collections held at Dove Cottage and the Wordsworth Museum are founded on the papers, books and personalia which Wordsworth bequeathed to his family. Through this material, and subsequent collecting, the museum covers not only the lives and works of Wordsworth and his circle, but the wider phenomenon of British Romanticism, and the role of the Lake District in inspiring writers and artists of the Romantic Movement.

Aside from its outstanding manuscript and portrait collections, the museum holds important paintings, prints and drawings of the Lake District. Among these is Joseph Wright of Derby's painting of Ullswater, David Cox's 'Morecambe Bay Sands', and drawings by Joseph Farington.

Collection details

Social History, Personalities, Fine Art, Decorative and Applied Art, Costume and Textiles, Archives

Key artists and exhibits

  • Designated Collection
Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
Dove Cottage at twilight

'Alone on a wide, wide sea'

  • 18 May 2018 7-8pm

While living at Dove Cottage in 1800, the Wordsworths and Coleridge were preparing the second edition of Lyrical Ballads for publication, often reading it aloud as they worked on it together. As part of the Museums at Night festival, we are delighted to bring this history to life with a special performance of one of the most popular poems in Lyrical Ballads: ‘Rime of the Ancient Mariner’.

David Hunt, an experienced poetry performance artist and friend of the Wordsworth Trust, will introduce and recite the entertaining and magical story for us in Dove Cottage. Afterwards there will be time to enjoy a glass of wine and reflect on the poem together.




Getting there

The car park for Dove Cottage & The Wordsworth Museum are located on the A591, the main Kendal–Keswick road through the central Lake District. Look for the big blue sign just south of the Grasmere mini-roundabout.

Dove Cottage & The Wordsworth Museum
Dove Cottage
Town End
LA22 9SH




015394 35544

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.