Honister Pass- 10 Things to Know Before Visiting

1 Day Treks

Mountain Passes

About Honister Pass

Honister Pass is a mountain pass in the mountainous Lake District in England. It reaches 356 m high, one of the highest in the region, and it is also one of the steepest. The summit of the scenic pass has trailheads that lead to some of the mountains in the region.

Hotels near Honister Pass

Hotels to stay near Honister Pass


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Things to Do at Honister Pass

Honister Pass is one of the most scenic and popular routes in the Lake District. The B5289 road that goes through the pass climbs from Borrowdale to a height of 356 m and plunges on a 4:1 slope to reach Buttermere far below. The valley of the pass is huge, with a beautiful rocky stream running through and huge boulders on each side.

The pass offers incredible views in any weather conditions. There are plenty of spaces to stop by and enjoy the beauty of nature from waterfalls to lovely mountain views. The parking spaces are free and unlimited. The road is up and down, slightly winding as well. The torchlight-like sunshine that is coming through the clouds is mesmerizing to watch, with the backdrop of mountains on each side. The drive sometimes feels like you're driving into Jurassic park.

From the summit, some trailheads lead to Fleetwith Pike to the west, Grey Knotts to the south, and Dale Head to the north that hikers could explore if they are interested. There is a youth hostel at the summit that can be used if you planning to explore the area over multiple days. The views from the summit of the valley below is breathtaking as well.

Activities Around

History of Honister Pass

The summit of Honister Pass is home to a historic slate mine. Visitors can tour the mine workings and see slate being split using traditional methods and buy small slate items from the shop. This is an extremely popular stop for Lake District tours.

The slate from Honister is a striking shade of green and is used for roofing, as well as walls and flooring. The earliest workings here date from 1688 when the miners had to lead packhorses laden with slate to Ravenglass on the coast for shipment some 50 kilometres away.

From the slate mine, paths lead towards Haystacks and Indomitable Tarn. The trail leads past disused slate quarries, where decaying mine buildings lay amid heaps of stone.

Best Time to Visit Honister Pass

At any weather, Honister Pass offers incredible views. Try not to visit in the nighttime so that you won't miss all the amazing views from the drive.

Tips for Visiting Honister Pass

  1. Remote area. Make sure that you have enough fuel in your vehicle.
  2. Beware of the steep inclines, bring a vehicle that is powerful enough.
  3. If you are planning to hike through the pass, beware that there could be strong winds which may force you to get down on your hands and knees and crawl up the pass.

Interesting Facts and Trivias About Honister Pass

  1. The slate from Honister Slate mine that is located at the summit of the pass is used to design Kensington Palace in London.
  2. Honister Pass holds the UK 24-hour rainfall record. In the 24 hours to 6 pm on 5 December 2015, 341.4 mm of rain fell there.

How Much Time Did Visitors Spend at Honister Pass

It only takes 30 minutes to drive through Honister Pass but if you stop by to see the river flowing through and the waterfalls and to enjoy the scenery around, it would take 1 to 2 hours in total.

If you plan to hike to some of the mountains that are connected to the summit of the pass, or if you plan to visit the slate mine, you can easily spend a whole day here. There is also an option to spend multiple days here exploring the nearby peaks if you stay in the youth hostel on the pass's summit.

How to Reach Honister Pass

From Buttermere, drive towards Borrowdale. The road passes through Honister Pass.

Entrance Fee of Honister Pass

There is no entrance fee to visit Honister Pass.

Opening Hours of Honister Pass

Honister Pass is a public road so there are no opening hours. It is highly recommended to go during the daylight to enjoy the extremely scenic views and to avoid not getting help if stuck in the steep climbs of the road.

Attractions Near Honister Pass

Fleetwith Pike

Fleetwith Pike

0.84km from Honister Pass

Fleetwith Pike is a fell in the English Lake District in the county of Cumbria which reaches a height of 648 metres. The fell is a well-known feature of the area as it casts an imposing presence over Buttermere and the Honister Pass on the B5289 motor road between Borrowdale and Buttermere. One of the nice trekking destination and also you can spend a nice time there.

Honister Slate Mine

Honister Slate Mine

1.27km from Honister Pass

Honister Slate mine is at the top of the Honister Pass in Borrowdale in the Lake District. You can watch slate being riven (or split) using processes that have changed little over the past 300 years. Quarrying for Westmorland green slate has been taken place in the area since 1728. Apart from the mining, it is also a popular tourist attraction in the Lake District National Park.



2.24km from Honister Pass

This modest mountain occupies an important position at the head of the Buttermere valley and is surrounded by a diverse and interesting range of peaks. Its large, undulating summit, containing many hidden recesses, is interesting and contains a number of attractive rock formations and tarns. One of the nice trekking destinations and also you can spend a nice time there.



3.49km from Honister Pass

Buttermere is a lake in the Lake District in North West England. The classic combination of lakes and mountains has made this popular with visitors since the beginning of tourism in the Lake District. The popular lake is regularly voted as one of the country’s favourite views.

Great Gable

Great Gable

3.84km from Honister Pass

Great Gable is one of the most distinctive fells in the Lake District, clearly visible and easily identified from all over the National Park. One of the unique locations for walkers, scramblers, and climbers alike. It provides a challenging alternative to the walk to the summit, completing a circuit of the fell’s precipitous slopes using trails that used to be the domain solely of hardened climbers.

Castle Crag

Castle Crag

3.95km from Honister Pass

Castle Crag is a hill in the North Western Fells of the English Lake District. It is the smallest hill included in Alfred Wainwright's influential Pictorial Guide to the Lakeland Fells, the only Wainwright below 1,000 feet. This route follows the terrace path above the lovely Borrowdale Valley. A short diversion takes you up to Castle Crag via a short but fairly steep zigzag path of loose slate. The route drops through the Jaws of Borrowdale down to the River Derwent below and follows the river

Discover More Attractions in Cumbria, Home of Honister Pass



91 attractions

The largest and most widespread industry in Cumbria is tourism. The Lake District National Park alone receives some 15.8 million visitors every year.World-famous for its beautiful lakes and mountainous fells, carved out long ago by glaciers, the Lake District today is a playground for walkers and outdoor enthusiasts.

Location of Honister Pass


For more information about Honister Pass, visit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honister_Pass

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