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Green Travel Guide to the

Yorkshire Dales National Park

Words by Jane Dunford.
Artwork for Green Traveller's Guides by Tina Smith and Mark Edwards.


Foreword by David Butterworth, Chief Executive, Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority

From the classic limestone scenery in the south of the National Park, to the open moorland in the north, and the grassy rounded hills of the Howgills in the west, this is a striking landscape which has been attracting visitors for hundreds of years.  It is an area of traditional meadows, dry-stone walls and hill country with each dale having a distinctive character and atmosphere.

There is a fantastic network of footpaths and bridleways to explore, you can climb to the highest peak in Yorkshire, go underground in the longest cave in the country and drink in the highest pub in Britain.

There are lovely traditional stone built villages with a strong sense of community which is reflected in the many shows and festivals that take place through the year. You can see the scarecrows in Kettlewell, watch sheep shearing, take part in a fell race or just sit and listen to music at the Swaledale or Grassington Festivals.

One of the great railway journeys takes you through the National Park from Settle to Carlisle - a masterpiece of Victorian engineering as it carves through the area using tunnels and viaducts.

This Green Traveller Guide will also introduce you to many of the great places to stay, where to get great local produce and how to find the best places to visit.

What our writers discovered in the Yorkshire Dales National Park

Straddling the Pennies, the Yorkshire Dales National Park is a place of stark beauty and ever-changing moods: sometimes wild and windswept, sometimes tranquil and sunlit, each valley or ‘dale’ has its own distinct character. With the finest limestone scenery in the UK, the park is also home to turbulent waterfalls, dense woodlands and vast landscapes crisscrossed with dry stone walls. With activities on offer ranging from walking to mountain biking, horse riding to rock climbing, this is heaven for those who love the great outdoors. The region’s natural beauty is made even more enticing by the scores of wonderful places to eat, drink and stay.

Stay, Eat, See & Do

Our pick of places across the glorious Yorkshire Dales National Park

Written by Paul Bloomfield

Google Map Key:
Click on the coloured icons for more information about each listing
Green = Places to stay; Blue = Places to eat; Yellow = Attractions; Purple = Activities

Click on the square brackets top right of map to reveal expanded map

  • The Yorkshire Dales National Park is home to the highest peak in Yorkshire – Whernside at 736m

  • There are over 4000 field barns and 8600km of drystone wall in the National Park

  • The Yorkshire Dales is the UK’s finest karst (limestone) scenery, with extensive areas of limestone pavement, cave systems, sinkholes, dry valleys and crags

  • The National Park is sparsely populated, with just over 20,000 people spread over 1760 sq. km

  • There are 200 scheduled monuments, 1800 listed buildings and 37 conservation areas in the National Park

  • The area is famous for its waterfalls, which include Ingleton, Hardraw, Aysgarth, Stainforth, Kisdon, West Burton, Cautley Spout, and many more

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