Finalists have been unveiled for a prestigious competition that celebrates the best of what the county has to offer.

Judges have whittled down hundreds of entries to a shortlist for the 15th Cumbria Tourism Awards.

The awards celebrate the huge range and diversity of Cumbria’s tourism industry and are open to a number of tourism-related businesses including hotels, B&Bs, holiday parks, pubs, visitor attractions, events, businesses and tourism staff, which make up the county’s successful tourism industry.

Ian Stephens, managing director at Cumbria Tourism, said: “2017 has been another fantastic year for entries with exceptional quality shown across all the categories, demonstrating that Cumbria’s businesses continue to offer world class levels of quality, service and experience for visitors.

"It’s been a tough job for the shortlisting panel but we are now able to announce the successful finalists for the 2017 Cumbria Tourism Awards.

"I would like to congratulate each and every business for making it to this year’s final and for their continuing hard work and commitment to tourism in the county.”

The finalists, who entered across 17 categories, will find out their fate at the black tie awards ceremony on June 21 at Cartmel Racecourse.

Most of the winners from the awards will go on to represent the county at the Visit England Awards for Excellence in 2018.

Carlisle-based businesses The Halston and Tullie House Museum & Art Gallery are up for Self-Catering Holiday Provider of the Year and Large Visitor Attraction of the Year, respectively.

In west Cumbria Whitehaven's Beacon museum and Mirehouse & Gardens have been shortlisted.

The North Lakes also boast a string of finalists including The Grange Country House Bed and Breakfast, Keswick, The Bistro at the Lakes Distillery, Bassenthwaite, and Ullswater Steamers.

Walby Farm Park, at Crosby-on-Eden near Carlisle, has been shortlisted in for Large Visitor Attraction of the Year and Lanercost B&B, near Carlisle, is also in the running for an award.

Up for Tourism Event of the Year are Penrith's Winter Droving by Eden Arts, and the Go Herdwick Public Art Trail run by The Lake District Calvert Trust.

Two activities based at Whinlatter Forest Park - Go Ape and Cyclewise - are within reach of the Tourism Experience of the Year award.

Cumbria Tourism thanked their sponsors for making the event possible.

Following the devastation brought by Storm Desmond, the 2016 awards, attended by nearly 400 guests, were seen as a moral booster and a chance for businesses in the tourism sector to come together in support of one another.

Self-Catering Holiday Provider of the Year:

  • The Nests at The Swan
  • Pullwood Bay
  • The Halston

Self-Catering Holiday Property of the Year:

  • Gate House
  • Waitby School
  • Hart Barn

Holiday Park of the Year

  • Waterfoot Park
  • The Quiet Site
  • Skelwith Fold Caravan Park
  • Holgates Silverdale Holiday Park

Guest Accommodation of the Year

  • Hazel Bank Country House
  • Broadoaks Country House
  • The Grange Country House Bed and Breakfast

B&B of the Year

  • Hill Crest Country Guest House
  • The Malabar
  • Lanercost Bed and Breakfast

Taste Cumbria Award

  • Askham Hall
  • Merewood Country House Hotel
  • The Lingholm Kitchen and Walled Garden
  • The Bistro, Lakes Distillery

Sustainable Tourism Award

  • Newlands Adventure Centre
  • The Quiet Site
  • Ullswater Steamers
  • Skelwith Fold Caravan Park

Tourism Event of the Year

  • The Winter Droving (Eden Arts)
  • Go Herdwick Public Art Trail (The Lake District Calvert Trust)
  • Where is Peter Rabbit Production (World of Beatrix Potter Attraction)
  • Beatrix Potter 150th Anniversary Programme (The National Trust)

Large Hotel of the Year

  • The Daffodil Hotel & Spa
  • The Trout Hotel
  • Castle Green Hotel
  • The Swan

Small Hotel of the Year

  • Appleby Manor Hotel & Garden Spa
  • Cragwood Country House Hotel
  • The Ryebeck

Large Visitor Attraction of the Year

  • World of Beatrix Potter Attraction
  • Tullie House Museum & Art Gallery
  • Walby Farm Park
  • Holker Hall & Gardens

Visitor Attraction of the Year

  • Wordsworth House & Garden
  • The Beacon Museum
  • Mirehouse & Gardens

Tourism Experience of the Year

  • Cyclewise, Whinlatter
  • Go Ape, Whinlatter
  • Bay Cycle Way

New Tourism Business Award

  • Cliffhanger Rooms
  • CBA Events @ Graythwaite
  • Chocolate World

Wedding Venue of the Year

  • The Villa Hotel
  • The Daffodil Hotel & Spa
  • The Wild Boar
  • The Coppermines Mountain Wedding Venue

Tourism Pub of the Year

  • The Mason's Arms, Strawberry Bank,
  • Kirkstile Inn, Loweswater
  • The Flying Pig
  • Three Shires Inn

The Sheila Hensman Award for Outstanding Contribution to Excellence

  • Mel Ibbotson, The Leathes Head Hotel
  • Paula Richardson and Frank McGurk, Sharrow Bay Country House Hotel
  • Brimstone Hotel Host Team