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Lake District and southern Scotland

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Hello. My friend and I just decided in a trip to England in October. We have a few things yet to decide, and that's where I hope this forum can help.
1. We plan to stay for two nights in the Lake District. If possible, we'd like to use public transport the whole way. The circulator buses seem like they might allow us to get around pretty well and see some sights. We aren't the type to take long hikes, but we would like to get out and about while we're there.
So it seems that we would need to stay somewhere that we can reach by train and that would have easy access to the park. We also would like to have pubs and restaurants wherever we stay. Windermere seems as though it might be too small, so I'm thinking about Kendal or Keswick and would appreciate your thoughts.
2. We need to decide where to spend two more nights. We were thinking about York, but everybody says we should go to Scotland. We're not interested in Edinburgh or a big city, and we would like to stay in southern Scotland so it doesn't take us too long to get back to London. Keeping the need for public transport in mind, any thoughts about where we could go in southern Scotland?
As a side note, I'm not a wimpy driver, but the thought of driving a right-hand-drive car on the left side of the road sounds like more stress than I want to have on this trip!
Thank you for your help.

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