In England’s Lake District, Beatrix Potter is as well known for her conservation efforts as for “The Tale of Peter Rabbit.” The 2006 biopic “Miss Potter,” starring Renée Zellweger, was filmed in part in the Lake District, where the children’s book author spent summer vacations as a child and where she later settled to write and illustrate stories featuring an assortment of quirky but appealing animals.
The landscape of this rural region in northwest England is striking — impossibly green fields; high, glassy lakes ringed by mist-shrouded mountains; old stone farmhouses surrounded by colorful gardens. Lake Windermere, in the heart of Lake District National Park, is the country’s largest lake. Today you can visit Potter’s Hill Top Farm in Coniston, a modest two-story, 17th-century cottage with beamed ceilings, stone floors, and original furniture.
In her later years, the author bought up all the land she could in the Lake District to protect it from development. When she died at 77 in 1943, she left 4,000 acres to the National Trust. --E.A.