Coniston is a village that grew up around the coal mining industry, and these days it makes a fine place for relaxing by the quiet lakeside. The lake here is famous for the world record jet boat speed attempts made here by Sir Malcolm Campbell and his son Donald between the 1930s and 1960s. The lake also famously inspired Arthur Ransome’s classic children’s story Swallows and Amazons. Coniston’s museum explores the village’s history, touching on copper mining, Arthur Ransome, and the Campbell story. For a dash of Victorian elegance, you can’t miss the steam yacht Gondola which offers rides daily. You can also catch a ride on the solar powered Coniston Launches which sail to the jetties at Torver, Water Park, Lake Bank, Sunny Bank, and Brantwood via Peel Island. Coniston Boating Center is the place to go for renting row boats, canoes, and motor boats.