Days out in the Yorkshire Dales
14th March 2023
The Yorkshire Dales National Park covers 2,179km2 or 841m2 so there is plenty to see and many places to explore during your holidays.
If you are pre-planning your daily itinerary before your come to stay in the Dales, here are some suggested days out.
Start your trip with a visit to the charming market town of Skipton, known as the “Gateway to the Dales.” Wander around the 900-year-old Skipton Castle and explore the bustling High Street, which has a variety of independent shops and cafes.
After lunch, drive to Malham Cove, a natural limestone formation with stunning views of the surrounding countryside. Take a leisurely walk along the Malham Cove Trail, which is about 1.5 miles long, and stop at the limestone pavement and Janet’s Foss waterfall.
Head to the Wensleydale Creamery in Hawes, where you can sample some of the famous Wensleydale cheese and learn about its production. Afterward, take a short walk to Hardraw Force, England’s highest single drop waterfall, and enjoy the beautiful scenery.
In the afternoon, visit the village of Aysgarth and the Aysgarth Falls, a series of waterfalls and rapids on the River Ure. The falls were famously featured in the film “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.”
Explore the historic town of Richmond, which boasts a Norman castle, a Georgian theater, and a variety of shops and restaurants. Take a walk along the River Swale and visit the Richmondshire Museum to learn about the local history.
After lunch, head to the Forbidden Corner, a unique attraction featuring a maze of tunnels, follies, and surprises. It’s a great place for families or anyone looking for a bit of adventure.
Spend the day in the picturesque village of Grassington, which is known for its cobbled streets, stone cottages, and charming shops. ‘All Creatures Great and Small’ is filmed in and around Grassington. Take a stroll along the River Wharfe and visit the Grassington Folk Museum, which tells the story of the village’s past.
In the afternoon, head to Bolton Abbey, a ruined 12th-century monastery set in a stunning parkland. Explore the abbey ruins, take a walk along the River Wharfe, and enjoy a picnic in the beautiful surroundings.
Alterenatively you could choose this itinerary:-
Start your day early and head to the picturesque village of Grassington. You can explore the quaint streets and visit the Grassington National Park Centre to learn more about the area.
Next, drive to the nearby Bolton Abbey estate, where you can take a leisurely walk along the River Wharfe and visit the ruins of the 12th century Bolton Priory.
End your day with a visit to the market town of Skipton, where you can explore the medieval Skipton Castle and wander through the bustling high street.
Drive to the town of Hawes and visit the Wensleydale Creamery, where you can learn about the history of cheese-making in the region and taste some delicious cheeses.
Next, head to the Aysgarth Falls, a stunning series of waterfalls set in a picturesque wooded valley.
Finish your day by visiting the charming village of Reeth, where you can take a stroll through the village green and enjoy a traditional Yorkshire pub meal.
Start your day by driving to Malham Cove, a dramatic limestone cliff that has been featured in films such as Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
Next, visit the nearby Malham Tarn, a beautiful glacial lake surrounded by rolling hills.
End your day with a visit to the town of Settle, where you can explore the Settle-Carlisle Railway, one of the most scenic railway routes in England.
Drive to the village of Kettlewell, which has been used as a filming location for the movie “Calendar Girls”. You can take a walk along the river and enjoy the stunning scenery.
Next, head to the nearby village of Grassington and take a guided tour of the Grassington Lead Mining Trail, where you can learn about the region’s mining history.
End your day with a visit to the nearby Stump Cross Caverns, a network of limestone caves that are home to stunning rock formations.
Still not sure and you need another plan, what about:-
Day 1: Explore the market towns
Start your day by visiting the market town of Skipton, known as the “Gateway to the Dales.” Here you can visit Skipton Castle, one of the best-preserved medieval castles in England.
After exploring Skipton, head to the picturesque market town of Grassington, which is known for its cobbled streets and charming independent shops.
End your day by visiting the town of Hawes, which is famous for its Wensleydale cheese. Here you can visit the Wensleydale Creamery to learn about the cheese-making process and sample some delicious cheeses.
Day 2: Hike in the Dales
Start your day by driving to Malham Cove, a spectacular natural limestone formation that was formed over 12,000 years ago. From here, you can take a hike to Malham Tarn, a stunning glacial lake in the heart of the Dales.
After your hike, head to the nearby village of Settle for lunch. This quaint village has several excellent cafes and pubs where you can refuel after your morning hike.
In the afternoon, visit the town of Ingleton, where you can take a guided walk through the famous Ingleton Waterfalls Trail. This 4.5-mile circular trail takes you past several beautiful waterfalls and through stunning woodland scenery.
Day 3: Visit the historic sites
Start your day by visiting the ruins of Bolton Abbey, a medieval monastery located in a beautiful riverside setting. You can explore the ruins and take a walk along the River Wharfe, which runs through the abbey grounds.
After visiting Bolton Abbey, head to the nearby town of Knaresborough to visit Knaresborough Castle. This historic castle dates back to the 12th century and offers stunning views over the town and the River Nidd.
End your day by visiting the impressive Fountains Abbey, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that dates back to the 12th century. The abbey ruins are set in a beautiful parkland setting, which is perfect for a leisurely stroll before heading back to your accommodation.
One more itinerary you may consider is:-
Day 1: Explore the Southern Dales
Start the day by driving to Malham, a picturesque village in the southern Dales. Visit Malham Cove, a towering limestone cliff formation that offers stunning views of the surrounding area.
From Malham, drive to the nearby village of Grassington, known for its charming stone cottages and independent shops. Take a stroll along the River Wharfe and enjoy lunch at one of the local pubs or cafes.
After lunch, head to the nearby village of Burnsall, where you can enjoy a leisurely walk along the river and take in the stunning scenery. The village is also home to a picturesque stone bridge, which is a popular spot for photographers.
Day 2: Explore the Northern Dales
Start the day by driving to Aysgarth Falls, a series of waterfalls on the River Ure. Take a walk along the river and enjoy the views of the falls, which are particularly impressive after heavy rainfall.
From Aysgarth, drive to the nearby village of Hawes, which is home to the Wensleydale Creamery, where you can learn about the history of Wensleydale cheese and sample some of the local varieties.
After visiting the creamery, head to the nearby Hardraw Force, England’s highest single-drop waterfall. Take a walk through the woodland to reach the waterfall, which is surrounded by dramatic cliffs and rocky outcrops.
Day 3: Explore the Western Dales
Start the day by driving to the village of Ingleton, which is known for its stunning limestone scenery and impressive cave systems. Take a guided tour of Ingleborough Cave, one of the largest and most impressive cave systems in the Dales.
After visiting the cave, head to White Scar Cave, another popular cave system in the area. Take a guided tour of the cave and learn about its fascinating geology and history.
After visiting the caves, drive to the nearby village of Dent, which is known for its charming cobbled streets and historic buildings. Take a stroll around the village and enjoy lunch at one of the local cafes or pubs.
Day 4: Explore the Eastern Dales
Start the day by driving to the town of Richmond, which is home to a historic castle and a variety of independent shops and cafes. Take a walk around the castle and enjoy the views of the surrounding countryside.
From Richmond, drive to the nearby village of Reeth, which is located in the heart of Swaledale. Take a walk along the river and enjoy the views of the rolling hills and green fields.
After visiting Reeth, head to the nearby village of Muker, which is known for its wildflower meadows and stunning scenery. Take a walk around the village and enjoy a cup of tea at one of the local cafes.