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The Best Hotels in Carlisle

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Best Hotels in Carlisle

Carlisle Hotels

Full of eye-catching attractions, Carlisle sits close to one of Britain's ancient landmarks, Hadrian's Wall, but the city itself has plenty of rich historical resonance. After all, it's an old Roman settlement, and signs of its past can be seen everywhere as you walk around. There are also craggy medieval landmarks and sprawling emerald-green parks teeming with otters and kingfishers. The little independent shops, art galleries and relaxing cafes also help make this Cumbrian jewel a fantastic city break destination for anyone in search of serious relaxation.

Things to see

First built by none other than the son of William the Conqueror, Carlisle Castle is a striking stronghold that dominates the city. With its rosy-reddish walls and jutting battlements, it's straight out of every medieval epic movie you've ever seen, and you can do more than just admire the outside. Venturing within, you can visit the dungeons and see the notorious "licking stones" where prisoners once had to lick moisture from the walls to survive. Another ancient landmark is Carlisle Cathedral, it was founded way back in the 12th Century and boasts intricate medieval stained glass windows and the powerful carved imagery of the Brougham Triptych, made around 1520. Another must-see in the historic quarter is Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery, which showcases some of the greatest paintings, watercolours and sculptures in Cumbria's past. The exhibition of clothing from the 1720s onwards will also dazzle any fashionista.

Hotels in Carlisle

From reliable chain names to old-fashioned, family-run accommodation, there is a large array of hotels in Carlisle on offer. Many offer the sorts of facilities that will make you feel right at home, including high-speed Internet access and digital television channels, and some of the larger ones boast indoor swimming pools and gyms. Many of the hotels and bed and breakfasts are set within charming Victorian terraces and grand Edwardian piles. They make for perfect, genteel bases to explore Carlisle, Hadrian's Wall and the Lake District.

Where to stay

There's a concentration of hotels in Carlisle based around the historic city centre. These are of course ideal if Carlisle itself will be the focus of your stay, and you want to tour the cathedral and browse through the local shops. That said, there are handsome hotels located on the outskirts, in villages and market towns like Wetheral and Brampton. These are picture-perfect rustic nooks, including ancient inns that have been done up to 4-star hotel standard while still maintaining the facades that coachmen from centuries past would recognise.

How to get to Carlisle

Getting to Carlisle is a doddle by car or coach, thanks to the M6 motorway which will let you get there in no time. Carlisle Station, a handsome listed building, is where you can hop on trains to and from London and other major cities across the UK. There's also a direct train link to Manchester Airport. Once in Carlisle you'll want to explore its historical streets on foot, although it's good to know an efficient taxi service is available if you need to get somewhere in a jiffy.