Golden Rule
Golden Rule
4.5
11:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Monday
11:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Tuesday
11:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Wednesday
11:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Thursday
11:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Friday
11:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Saturday
11:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Sunday
11:00 AM - 11:00 PM
About
The Golden Rule, tucked away off the main road in Ambleside, is a traditional and unchanging multi-roomed pub in the heart of The Lake District with a reputation that spreads around the world. Ever popular with varied mix of local residents, visitors from near and far, the young and old, walkers, climbers, mountain bikers, artists and writers, the Rule is just the place to have a drink and a chat.
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What is Travellers’ Choice?
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The area
See what travellers are saying
  • Eliza J
    Lampeter, United Kingdom9 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Always a Great pub
    As ever, the beer was perfect, the barman friendly. The atmosphere is relaxing and welcoming. Soaking wet walkers and dogs are welcome, with plenty of hooks under the bar for dripping coats. Comfy seating and friendly chat. No music, no food. A proper old fashioned unspoiled pub. We have been coming here occasionally for 30 years, and will look forward to coming back again.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 11 September 2023
  • Debs2boys
    Farnborough, United Kingdom9 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Don't miss a visit to the Golden Rule!
    The best pub in Ambleside! Friendly, warm, welcoming! I used to drink here in the early 90's when I was a student in Ambleside. It's hardly changed and brought back so many wonderful memories. Lovely to see John still in there but as a customer now not behind the bar!
    Visited November 2022
    Travelled with friends
    Written 1 October 2023
  • CheshireDancingqueen
    Nantwich, United Kingdom957 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Generally good at the Golden Rule
    As we were staying across the road, the Golden Rule became our local for the week. A great traditional pub, always busy with a great atmosphere. They serve a good pint. The service was on the whole really good, we encountered one young gentleman who really couldn’t be bothered, however later in the week he was delightful, maybe just an ‘off’ day.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 17 October 2023
  • Veronica C
    Calgary, Canada49 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Got to go!
    We had a number of wonderful nights with Kieran, Iona and the rest of the bar staff (apologies Mr Tipperary and the other lady) at the Golden Rule. There was a perfect welcome, a welcoming banter and an appropriate amount of inclusion. The bar was warm, clean and comfortable. The location was tremendously convenient for us. We observed the staff navigate a couple of difficult situations. We had great chats and lots of laughs. What a top class act these young staff are. Margaret should be very proud. Thank you for a wonderful experience! Veronica and Christian!
    Visited January 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 25 January 2024
  • Jack M
    United Kingdom61 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Best pub in the lakes!
    We've been all over the lakes and this our favourite pub by far. The pub is so nice and cosy inside, lot's of drink choices, board games you can play & of course very dog friendly. We can't wait to come back on our next trip to Ambleside.
    Visited February 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 27 February 2024
  • chrisaA2623NS
    Manchester, United Kingdom29 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A proper pub
    Myself and a group of my friends visit Ambleside several times a year & we always visit The Rule. We’ve been making the trip for over 30 years & the pub has hardly changed in all that time. The cask beer is always spot on and you can hear yourself talk. Great pub.
    Visited March 2024
    Travelled with friends
    Written 17 March 2024
  • Helen E
    Harrogate, United Kingdom3 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Never changes and that’s a good thing.
    We love making the Golden Rule a bit of a local when we stay in Ambleside, always a warm welcome from this proper - adults only at certain times - pub. It’s never changed in the 7 years we’ve been coming which is great. I was so happy with a FULL glass of Prosecco served as usually in a pub they manage to never fill the glass - not here. Also the fizz was very good unlike the chain that’s moved into Ambleside. Excellent beers I’m told. Love meeting all the dogs too. Rip to the little white dog that used to run the pub.
    Visited June 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 13 June 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles489 reviews
Excellent
363
Very good
78
Average
13
Poor
3
Terrible
32

Helen E
Harrogate, UK3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Couples
We love making the Golden Rule a bit of a local when we stay in Ambleside, always a warm welcome from this proper - adults only at certain times - pub. It’s never changed in the 7 years we’ve been coming which is great. I was so happy with a FULL glass of Prosecco served as usually in a pub they manage to never fill the glass - not here. Also the fizz was very good unlike the chain that’s moved into Ambleside. Excellent beers I’m told. Love meeting all the dogs too. Rip to the little white dog that used to run the pub.
Written 13 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

NeilandAmanda13
Newcastle, UK83 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Couples
1st night was great when the manger wasn't behind the bar 2nd night we walked straight back out after his bad attitude from the manager because our dog was at the bar counter,first night was great with a lot of pictures taken
Written 2 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
I'm sorry to hear that you didn't have an enjoyable experience on your recent visit to the Golden Rule. I'm not sure who spoke to you on your second night but it certainly wasn't the manager. I do notice however that the picture you have added to your review is not of the bar at the Golden Rule but of another pub in Ambleside. However, just in case it was us you visited, I have spoken to all the bar staff to remind them of our policy on dogs, which is that they are very welcome provided that they are kept off the furniture and don't cause a nuisance to other people.
Written 19 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

speacilkay2007
Bristol, UK3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Couples
The most friendliest welcoming pub I've ever been in , Cumbria Way beer .. the best . John , Margaret & Staff are so lovely .
Written 20 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Happy24/7
Bury St. Edmunds, UK164 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Friends
The pub is Dirty and untidy, bar staff needs to go on a course on public relations on how to treat tourists with respect they were only friendly with the locals your a tourist so fleece um while there here seems to be there way. The locals had there pet dogs with them and they were certainly more friendly then the miserable pair behind the bar. There’s much better pubs elsewhere this one unfortunately isn’t one of them.
Written 7 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
"Dirty and untidy" and "miserable" are not terms many people would use about the Golden Rule. I suspect that there is much more to this tale than is being told here.
Written 19 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

chrisaA2623NS
Manchester, UK29 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Friends
Myself and a group of my friends visit Ambleside several times a year & we always visit The Rule. We’ve been making the trip for over 30 years & the pub has hardly changed in all that time.
The cask beer is always spot on and you can hear yourself talk. Great pub.
Written 17 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

spaceman28
UK147 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Couples
Lovely little pub with choice of proper beers, and traditional authentic atmosphere. No frills, friendly staff, off the main thoroughfare. Recommended
Written 27 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jack M
United Kingdom61 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Couples
We've been all over the lakes and this our favourite pub by far. The pub is so nice and cosy inside, lot's of drink choices, board games you can play & of course very dog friendly. We can't wait to come back on our next trip to Ambleside.
Written 27 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Janey W
1 contribution
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Friends
Just some quotes from our visit from the staff:
“You don’t want food do you? Because we don’t do it”
“We don’t do hot drinks with alcohol” (when asked for a baileys coffee)
“Before 6pm would be good because that’s when my shift finishes” - a rude and sarcastic comment when one of us was deciding which beer to have
“Take your wet trousers off before sitting down, don’t make the seats wet” (this was repeated to every single member of our group and the manager/owner made quite a fuss about it)

We were a large group of hikers but we checked before coming in that they had space for us. I don’t know who they expect to walk through their door if not hikers, but we were clearly an inconvenience and as we were leaving the manager/owner was overheard saying “I’m glad those wet people have gone”.
We must have spent nearly £200 on one round between us but clearly they didn’t want anymore custom from us so we went somewhere else for our next round!
Written 19 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
I am sorry to hear that you had an unpleasant visit and I agree that the comments that were made to your group were unacceptable. We did have a (now former) member of staff who had a peculiar sense of humour, and I suspect many of the comments were meant in jest, however they frequently didn't come across that way to other people. Whilst we do regularly have a problem on rainy days with people sitting on the furniture in wet waterproofs and leaving a wet patch for other people to sit in, this clearly doesn't need to be said on an individual basis and can be said in a pleasant way. Unfortunately the landlady can get a bit of a bee in her bonnet about it. Please accept my apologies for your treatment during your visit, as clearly on this occasion we fell far short of even the minimum standard of hospitality that should be expected.
Written 19 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Veronica C
Calgary, Canada49 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2024 • Couples
We had a number of wonderful nights with Kieran, Iona and the rest of the bar staff (apologies Mr Tipperary and the other lady) at the Golden Rule.
There was a perfect welcome, a welcoming banter and an appropriate amount of inclusion.
The bar was warm, clean and comfortable. The location was tremendously convenient for us.
We observed the staff navigate a couple of difficult situations. We had great chats and lots of laughs.
What a top class act these young staff are. Margaret should be very proud.
Thank you for a wonderful experience! Veronica and Christian!
Written 25 January 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

CheshireDancingqueen
Nantwich, UK957 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Couples
As we were staying across the road, the Golden Rule became our local for the week. A great traditional pub, always busy with a great atmosphere. They serve a good pint.

The service was on the whole really good, we encountered one young gentleman who really couldn’t be bothered, however later in the week he was delightful, maybe just an ‘off’ day.
Written 17 October 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Golden Rule - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024) - Tripadvisor

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