The Yorkshire Dales National Park

The emerald valleys of Northern England

The Yorkshire Dales National Park

The windswept Yorkshire Dales National Park is scenically dramatic; you will see every green colour you can imagine and thirty times as many sheep than people. The Yorkshire Dales is a paradise for certain sheep breeds; they love the quality grass and cool weather. 

Get to know your Swaledale from your Wensleydale sheep breeds and even try some sheep's cheese. White dots cover the hills; they look much like moving rocks from a distance. Then you realise these extraordinary steep hills and mountains have ten's of thousands of sheep grazing upon them. 

We can arrange a meeting with sheepdog owners and experience them in action; it is incredible to see the interaction between human and dog. There is much to see and do; tour castles, shop in historic market towns or explore the many waterfalls along mountain trails.

The Yorkshire Dales National Park
The Yorkshire Dales National Park covers some 680 sq miles (1,770 sq. km) and has some of the most beautiful scenery in England. The landscape combines breath-taking views of hills, fells, waterfalls, lakes, rivers and reservoirs, caves and woodlands. The history of this fantastic area lives on through its name. 'Dale' comes from the old English word 'dael', meaning a deep low place. Formed over millennia by the erosion of ice, water, and wind the dales tend to be named after the rivers that shaped them. Hardraw Force is just one of these geological works of art, a waterfall with a 100 ft drop over a ravine, conveniently located behind a cosy pub. 

The Dales
Wensleydale - With a landscape formed by retreating glaciers, it's a wide river valley of softly rounded hills and lush meadows. The pastures provide ideal grazing for dairy cattle, and it's milk from cows used for the famous Wensleydale cheese. Within Wensleydale are the historic towns of Hawes, Bainbridge and Askrigg which is the film location of 'All Creatures Great and Small'. The Aysgarth Rock Garden is well worth making a detour.

Wharfdale - Takes its name from the river Wharf that runs south to Bolton Abbey. Drystone walls are much in evidence and picturesque villages providing a perfect backdrop for leisurely walks to pubs and tearooms.

Swaledale - A landscape of wild, unspoilt scenery with villages and hamlets with ancient names given to them by the Viking farmers who worked the land over a thousand years ago. The river Swale flows through heather-covered hills that at one time were home to a thriving lead mining industry. At the western end of Swaledale is Tan Hill, a pub that claims to be the highest in England. It's worth visiting to check out that claim, over a leisurely drink of course.

Malhamdale - perhaps the least well known of the Dales, Malhamdale has genuinely spectacular scenery that has inspired generations of artists and writers. Among them, David Hockney's paintings of the area are admired worldwide. Wordsworth's poems took shape in this area and Charles Kinsley's story of 'The Water Babes'.

Touring and accommodation
The Dales offers a wide variety of tours, none of which disappoint. Worthy of special mention is Richmond, the Dales' cultural capital, which provides a magnificent blend of history and scenery. Skipton with its castle; Settle, a picturesque town and Grassington are just a small selection of the settlements and villages that await your visit. The Fountains Abbey ruins, and Studley Royal water garden is one of the most magnificent historic gems to visit and is a 'must-see' attraction. Our tour designers can customise the Classic tour of England itinerary to match your requirements. 

Choose between the City centre location of York and stay at the Grand York Hotel. Alternatively, stay on the Swinton Estate, with a spa, cookery school, or participate in outdoor activities. Other options include traditional Inns and Manor House Hotels.

Enjoy the sublime beauty of the Yorkshire Dales

As a Yorkshire man says "God own Country" See for yourself

  • (AONB) Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
  • Guiding Hiking Available
  • Professional Caving Available
  • Sheep Dog Experiences
  • Driver Guided Touring