Things to do in North Yorkshire
North Yorkshire is England's largest county, with a wide diversity of scenery, attractions, historic towns and villages. Heritage sites and ancient architecture abounds throughout the County.
Visitors to North Yorkshire often start their holiday in the historic city of York. When you visit, allow plenty of time to explore this ancient city, its unique atmosphere and wonderful attractions such as Jorvik the Viking City, York Dungeon , York Guildhall and Fairfax House.
The busy market town of Selby, situated in the south of the county.is dominated by its 11th century abbey, where visitors can see the 14th century Washington Window, depicting the Washington family coat of arms, the inspiration of the American stars and stripes flag.
In the surrounding countryside, there are several nature reserves, walks and cycle routes worth exploring. Call at the tourist information centre for a leaflet on the villages and church trails.
In the west of North Yorkshire there are many destinations and attractions, such as Harrogate a beautiful spa town where you will find the Royal Pump Room Museum, the Mercer Art Gallery and nearby RHS Garden Harlow Carr. 14th century Ripley Castle is a few miles north of Harrogate.
To the north is the Cathedral City Ripon, the Cathedral is magnificent and well worth visiting. The town has many places of interest such as the marina area, pleasant gardens, Ripon Racecourse and the interesting Prison and Police Museum and nearby is Lightwater Valley Theme Park.
Just four miles west of Ripon is Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Gardens, a World Heritage site in the care of the National Trust.
At the gateway to the Yorkshire Dales is the market town Skipton, home to one of the best preserved medieval castles in England, Skipton Castle.
The tourist information office is in Coach Street, near the Canal Basin. The canal is the Leeds Liverpool Canal, Britain's longest inland waterway, which passes through the centre of Skipton, boat trips are operated daily from the quay.
A day in the countryside can be enjoyed at nearby Bolton Abbey, set in fabulous scenery with miles of riverside, woodland and moorland paths.
Richmond is a delightful, unspoiled town, which grew up around its Norman castle. The town is situated in Swaledale, surrounded by stunning scenery. The cobbled market square is thought to be one of the largest in England and the town contains many lovely Georgian buildings. To learn more about Richmond and district visit Richmondshire Museum.
Green Howards' Regimental Museum in Trinity Church Square shows a vivid presentation of the 'Green Howards' story. You can enjoy the unique of a performance at Richmond's Georgian Theatre Royal, Britain's most complete playhouse, and visit its museum, the first theatre museum in the country.
The area of North Yorkshire known as Hambleton takes the name from the Hambleton Hills, it is otherwise known as Herriot Country after the author James Herriot. The veterinary surgeon Alf Wight lived and worked in Thirsk and drew inspiration from the surrounding countryside and its characters for his novels.
Today Thirsk is home to 'The World of James Herriot' based in the surgery and original home of the vet, an interesting and unique tribute.
Nearby at Kirby Wiske is Falconry UK Ltd, the Birds of Prey and Conservation Centre, providing a chance to see over 30 species of birds. Also Sion Hill Hall, one of the finest houses to be built during the Edwardian era, is well worth visiting.
Bedale is Hambleton's gateway to the Yorkshire Dales, and convenient for exploring the area. Here you can enjoy a day at Thope Perrow Arboretum, home to some of the rarest trees and shrubs in England.
Northallerton situated in the Vale of Mowbery is the County Town of North Yorkshire, and the largest town in the Hambleton area, popular for shopping and the twice-weekly market.
Ryedale takes its name from the River Rye and lies in the east of the County between York and the coast, a relaxing rural area, with forest parks, castles, abbeys and many attractions. Tourist information centres can be found in the towns of Helmsley, Malton and Pickering.Castle Howard, is the largest house in Yorkshire and home of the Howard family since the 17th century.
Set against the backdrop of Helmsley Castle is Helmsley Walled Garden, a five acre kitchen garden producing many varieties of organic fruit, vegetables and plants, currently restoring the Victorian glasshouses.
Duncombe Park, overlooking Helmsley Castle and the valley of the River Rye, is set in 35 acres of landscaped gardens and 400 acres of parkland, containing a National Nature Reserve. It is a wonderful place for a family outing.
Near Helmsey is Rievaulx Abbey, the remains of the largest Monastic Abbey in Britain, a fine example of Gothic architecture.
Malton's history can be traced back to Roman times at Malton Museum in the Market Place, and for more recent information on the area visit Eden Camp Modern History Museum, telling of the social history of life in Britain between 1939-1945.
Enjoy a day out at Scampston Hall and its delightful garden.
For a family day out, situated between Malton and Pickering there is Flamingo land Theme Park and Zoo.
Pickering and The North Yorkshire Moors Railway
Pickering is a gateway to the North York Moors, overlooked by 12th century Pickering Castle. In Bridge Street is Beck Isle Museum, whose collection is housed in a Grade II listed Regency mansion.
Pickering is also the terminus of the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, the 18 mile trip runs between Pickering and the village of Grosmont passing through the beautiful scenery of the National Park.
On the Heritage Coast of North Yorkshire you will find high cliffs, sandy beaches, bird sanctuaries, quiet fishing ports and seaside resorts such as Filey, a quiet seaside town with a 5 mile sandy beach. Filey Museum is housed in the town's oldest domestic building.Captain Cook Memorial Museum, James Cook's lodging place during his apprenticeship years.
Days out in North Yorkshire
Barley Hall is a unique survival in York, a city of wonderful buildings. It is a medieval building in the centre of the city, forgotten until a few years ago.
Beck Isle Museum of Rural Life
An extensive museum containing a magnificent assortment of items curious, mysterious, marvellous and common place from the last 200 years.
Beningbrough Hall combines a visit to an 18th century Georgian Mansion in its own impressive gardens with the unique opportunity to see over 100 paintings.
Bolton Abbey is the Yorkshire Estate of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire, it has been in the family since the 1750's and provides over 80 miles of footpaths through some of the most spectacular scenery in England
Bolton is one of the country's best preserved medieval castles, situated in the heart of Wensleydale with stunning views over the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
The first known visitors to Brimham Rocks in the 18th century could not believe that these weird rock formations were not created by an ancient civilisation.
Captain Cook Memorial Museum
In Whitby's narrow, winding Grape Lane close by the busy Harbour, stood the handsome house of 18th century Quaker shipowner John Walker and his family - and - in the attic, his 'other family' of seventeen apprentices, lodging there.
Set in an elevated position, against the Howardian Hills in the North Riding of Yorkshire, Castle Howard's magnificent facade is visible for miles around.
Visitors to the historic city of York cannot miss the historic Clifford's Tower sitting incongruously on its grassy mound in the centre of the bustling city.
The Georgian Courthouse is virtually unchanged since it was built in 1830.
Since its redevelopment in 1996 Croft Circuit has endeavoured to bring the Creme de la Creme of British Motorsport to North East and North Yorkshire spectators.
Dales Countryside Museum and National Park Centre
This is an award-winning museum, managed by the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, housed in Hawes railway station in the north of the National Park.
DIG-An Archaeological Adventure
One of the best family day outs. No other experience gets you as close to the excitement of archaeological discovery. It's unique!
Sir Charles Duncombe's new Baroque mansion was completed in 1713 on a virgin plateau overlooking Helmsley Castle and the valley of the River Rye.
Eden Camp Modern History Museum
The site was named Eden Camp and the first inmates were two hundred and fifty Italian prisoners. These prisoners were put work constructing a larger permanent camp, consisting of forty-five huts. This is now a Modern History Theme Museum.
Come and unlock the splendour within the finest Georgian town house in England. A classical architectural masterpiece of its age, Fairfax House was originally the winter home of Viscount Fairfax.
Falconry uk Birds of Prey Centre
The Birds of Prey & Conservation Centre at Sion Hill Hall, near Thirsk, was set up to ensure that birds of prey would survive, and to provide the public with a rare opportunity to see and enjoy these beautiful birds.
The Museum building was originally two single storey cottages and is the oldest domestic building in Filey, 1696 being the date above the doors.
Flamingo Land Theme Park and Zoo
Looking for that destination that offers a wide variety of attractions for all the family from toddlers to grandparents? Then look no further! Flamingo Land Theme Park and Zoo offers a wealth of fun and excitement for all ages.
Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden
Few of The National Trust properties are UNESCO World Heritage Sites, but Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Park does have that distinction.
Georgian Theatre Royal
The Georgian Theatre Royal, the UK's oldest working theatre in its original form is situated in the picturesque Georgian market town of Richmond, North Yorkshire.
Green Howards Regimental Museum
Visit the Green Howards Museum and find out how this distinguished Infantry Regiment had an impact on the story of Britain, Europe and the world.
Hazel Brow Farm
Hazel Brow Farm is a 200 acre traditional family run farm in the heart of Swaledale - famous for its beautiful Herriot scenery.
Helmsley Walled Garden
Set against the backdrop of Helmsley Castle and Duncombe Park, the five acre garden, originally built in 1756, has recently benefited from 15 years of extensive restoration.
Jorvik Viking Centre
Explore York's Viking history on the very site where archaeologists uncovered remains of the Viking-Age City of 'Jorvik'.
A stronghold of Medieval Kings, Knaresborough Castle still stands towering above the River Nidd.
Lightwater Valley Theme Park
Lightwater Valley is simply bursting with 175 acres of action-packed adventures, from the dark and mysterious subterranean world of Raptor Attack to the dizzying heights of Whirlwind, a typhoon of screams that will twist even the bravest of souls.
Malam Tarn and Moor
Malham Tarn is a small glacial lake set on top of Malham Moor, a well-known beauty spot in the Yorkshire Dales. Surrounded by rolling hills and bleak moorland, it is the highest glacial lake in England.
Malton Museum is currently closed whilst a new home is found for it.The Museum is located in the old Town Hall right in the centre of Malton's Market Place. It is renowned for its imaginatively displayed Roman Collection.
Merchant Adventurers' Hall
The Merchant Adventurers' Hall is one of York's medieval marvels. Set in beautiful gardens in the heart of historical York, it is open for public use.
Mother Shiptons Cave and the Petrifying Well
Mother Shipton is England's most famous Prophetess. She lived 500 years ago in the times of King Henry VIII and Queen Elizabeth I. She was born in a cave beside Knaresborough' s mysterious Petrifying Well.
Mount Grace Priory
Although Mount Grace Priory is just a short drive from the grand ruins of the Cistercian Fountains Abbey it depicts the contrasting simplicity and austerity of life at this well-preserved former priory of the Carthusian Order.
National Railway Museum
For a free, fun-packed family day out visit the National Railway Museum in York and get up close to amazing locomotives and over 300 years of fascinating railway history.
A truly fascinating collection of exhibits is displayed in the original Victorian workhouse, beautifully illustrating the life and history of our Dalesfolk.
North Yorkshire Moors Railway
The 24 mile North Yorkshire Moors Railway runs through the beautiful North York Moors National Park, between the market town of Picering through to Whitby.
The walled garden is in full cultivation. Laid out in the mid 18th century, it retains the essentials of its original design, combined with sympathetic replanting in the English style.
Famous nowadays for displaying possibly the world's finest collection of miniature rooms, Nunnington Hall is far from miniature itself.
Parcevall Hall Gardens
Parcevall Hall Gardens are considered to be a fine example of the Arts and Crafts movement and are the only RHS and English Heritage registered gardens open to the public in the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
RHS Garden Harlow Carr
One of Yorkshire's most relaxing and surprising gardens at the gateway to the Yorkshire Dales!
Richmondshire Museum, which was opened in 1978, began in a former joiner's workshop and has gradually grown.
Set in a remote corner of the North Yorkshire Moors, it is easy to see what attracted St Aelred and his twelve Clairvaux monks to establish a monastery here in 1132.
Ripley Castle is Yorkshire's Best Small Visitor Attraction of the Year. It has belonged to the Ingilby for over 700 years and they are believed to be one of the oldest families in the country to still live in the same residence.
Few National Trust sites have such a delightful-sounding name as Roseberry Topping. This small mountain on the North Yorkshire Moors shares its name with the nearby village of Newton-under-Roseberry.
Scarborough Art Gallery
Paintings donated by local hotelier Tom Laughton form the core of Scarborough Borough's fine art collection.
Castle Hill headland was an excellent choice for building a fortification. The 300-foot high cliffs drop away on three sides of the promontory to North Bay and the harbour below.
Scarborough Sea Life and Marine Sanctuary
Crabs and their many clawed cousins are like marvellous machines, the armoured division of the marine world.
Here in 1760-67 the witty and eccentric parson, Laurence Sterne wrote Tristram Shandy and A Sentimental Journey.
Sion Hill was designed in 1912 by the renowned York Architect Walter H. Brierley "The Lutyens of the North".
Skipton Castle is one of the most complete and well preserved mediaeval castles in England - over 900 years old…
Stump Cross Caverns
Stump Cross Caverns is one of Britain's premier show caves, located in Nidderdale on the border of the Yorkshire Dales National Park. There are a range of facilities for a great family day out.
Sutton Park is a fine example of early Georgian architecture overlooking beautiful parkland. It was built in 1730 by Thomas Atkinson.
The Darley Mill Centre
Darley Mill is a unique 17th Century Restored Corn Mill set in stunning countryside in the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
The Mercer Art Gallery
Situated 100 yards from the entrance to the Valley Gardens and Royal Pump Room Museum, the Mercer Art Gallery is home to the District's superb collection of Fine Art.
The Prison And Police Museum
Sit in a prison cell, hear the door slam shut and imagine the harsh conditions of Vitorian prison regimes.
The Royal Pump Room Museum
Housed in Harrogate's premiere Spa building and site of Europe's strongest Sulphur Well, The Royal Pump Room Museum tells the story of Harrogate as a Spa.
The Walled Garden at Scampston
Scampston is among the best examples of the English Country House, combining fine architecture with a wealth of art treasures in a beautiful parkland setting in Yorkshire.
The Workhouse Museum
Almost all the buildings of the 1854 Ripon Union Workhouse have survived.
Thorp Perrow Arboretum Bird of Prey & Mammal Centre
Thorp Perrow is an 85 acre Arboretum set in over 1000 acres of parkland and is owned and managed by Sir John Ropner.
The Roman city of York has plenty of attractions, not least of which is the wonderful Treasurer's House which is situated in the heart of the city, in York Minster yard.
Best known as the setting for Bram Stoker's novel Dracula, the impressive ruins of Whitby Abbey were once the home of a Saxon saint.
White Scar Cave
Deep beneath Ingleborough Hill, in the Yorkshire Dales National Park, lies a hidden world which has been sculpted by nature over thousands of years.
York Brewery Tour
Established in 1996 within the City Walls, York Brewery is both a tourist attraction and a working brewery, providing customers locally and around the country with the first traditionally brewed ales from within the walls of York for over 40 years.
New from Easter 2011 - Gladiators of YorkCower in a world of dust and blood as you are hurled into the human horror circus of the Gladiator arena.
The Guildhall is an integral part of York's history. Building work on the present Guildhall began in 1445 and the accounts still survive.
If you're visiting York, you can't miss the enormous cathedral at the heart of the city - York Minster - the largest Gothic Cathedral in Northern Europe.
York Racecourse, known as the Knavesmire, has been a favourite amongst racegoers since it was founded in 1731. Today 15 meetings combine top class horseracing with world-class facilities to make them sporting and social occasions for all to enjoy.
Yorkshire Air Museum & Allied Air Forces Memorial
The largest independant Air Museum in Britain and the sole Allied Air Forces Memorial in Europe. Situated on a 20 acre parkland site it is the largest original RAF Bomber Command Station open to the public.
The Yorkshire Museum houses some of the finest collections of archaeological finds in Europe, spanning Roman, Anglo-Saxon, Viking and Medieval times.
Places to Visit in North Yorkshire
Appletreewick is a picturesque little village in the heart of wharfedale, in the Yorkshire Dales. Steeped with history and surrounded by some of the finest landscapes in the Dales. You can visit lots of local heritage sites or walk among th
Askrigg is a pretty village in Upper Wensleydale, part of the scenic Yorkshire Dales. It is five miles east of Hawes, the home of tasty Wensleydale cheese.
Austwick is a small village on the western edge of the scenic Yorkshire Dales National Park in North Yorkshire. It is in a rural location about five miles northwest Settle, the main town in the area.
Aysgarth is a village in Wensleydale,North Yorkshire and is best known for its natural beauty, its falls and its tasty cheese.
The delightful village of Brompton is situated 8 miles from Scarborough. A small village on the A170 you could easily drive by without realising the full beauty that lies just off this main road.
Burnsall is a delightful small parish in the scenic Yorkshire Dales National Park. It is situated on the River Wharfe and the five-arched bridge gives the village real charm and character.
Castleton is the main village in the Upper Esk Valley and has a relatively large number of amenities in the High Street including a Pub, NatWest bank, a garage (for petrol and car repair), Montage Art Gallery (of national renown).
Enjoying a peaceful, riverside location, Clapham has much to offer. There are pleasant walks to suit all abilities.
Cotterdale is a very small settlement, consisting of only 12 cottages, with no telephone box, no street lights, no shop, no pub but instead an abundance of peace and quiet.
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Filey is a small seaside resort seven miles south east of Scarborough on the North Yorkshire coast.
Grassington is a small market town known as the capital of Upper Wharfedale. Situated on the banks of the River Wharfe in the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
Halton West is a wonderful,peaceful,quite village on the Yorkshire Lancashire border home to around 50 people with 7 farms and plenty of animals. Halton west is between Hellifeild and Bolton by Bowland very close to Skipton and Settle.
Harrogate in beautiful North Yorkshire is renowned for its floral beauty and elegant spa buildings, which include the Royal Pump Room Museum, Mercer Gallery and Royal Baths.
Hawes at the head of Wensleydale is England's highest market town at 850 feet above sea level. It's a maze of narrow streets with places to eat and drink, hotels and guest houses and some interesting shops.
The pretty market town of Helmsley is in North Yorkshire on the River Rye between Pickering and Thirsk.
Helperthorpe is a village that the modern world has passed by, in the nicest possible sense, street lights and Channel five have still to reach this beautiful and tranquil village nestling in the Yorkshire Wolds.
The North Yorkshire village of Hinderwell is just one mile from the Scarborough coast.
Horton in Ribblesdale
Horton in Ribblesdale is a small village whose only claim to fame is as a base for climbing Pen-y-Ghent, one of Yorkshire's Three Peaks (the others are Ingleborough and Whernside).
Just outside the lovely North Yorkshire town of Harrogate is the village of Huby. It lies five miles southwest of Harrogate, on the busy A658 which runs to Otley in West Yorkshire.
The historic village of Hunmanby lies three miles inland from the seaside town of Filey. Positioned between Bridlington and Scarborough.
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Keld is the first or last village in Swaledale, depending on your approach and as a starting or finishing point on any trip is unsurpassed.
Kirk Hammerton is mentioned in the Domesday Book under its then name of Altera Hanbretone which means village on a hill. In fact, our beautiful Saxon church is the only building currently on a hill
The exact origins of the market town of Knaresborough are shrouded in mystery, but could well extend back to the Norman Conquest and possibly even to Roman times.
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Leyburn is a bustling market town, typical of those found throughout the North Riding of Yorkshire. It is perched on the banks above the River Ure in pretty Wensleydale
Lofthouse is situated in the heart of Nidderdale. This village has changed little over many years and is situated 7 miles from the Market town of Pateley Bridge.
A former lead mining village dating back to the 16th Century, Marrick is now a farming hamlet set on the northern outskirts of the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
A special plaque in Pateley Bridge High street marks the start and finish of the Nidderdale Way, a circular route of some 53 miles that loops around each side of the Nidd Valley.
Pickering is a small market town on the southern edge of the North York Moors National Park, overlooking the Vale of Pickering.
Situated just off the busy A19 between Selby and York, Riccall is a small picturesque village centred on the village green and ancient church.
Roecliffe is a small country village just off the A1. It's nearest shops are in nearby Boroughbridge.
Ruswarp is a pretty village which lies in the scenic Esk Valley, one mile south Whitby, which is on the North Yorkshire coast.
Sandsend lies on the east coast of Yorkshire. It is a delightfully picturesque village consisting of small fishermen's cottages set against the grassy cliffs and facing the long sandy beach.
Saxton is a small village one mile from the village of Towton, famous as the site of a major war of the roses battlefield.
Scarborough is Englands oldest holiday resort, and is situated on the north East Coast in the county of Yorkshire.
Settle is a small North Yorkshire market town on the B6480. It is on the edge of the beautiful Yorkshire Dales National Park.
The small town of Skipton in North Yorkshire is well known for its wonderfully well-preserved mediaeval castle.
Sleights (which rhymes with nights) is a small village four miles southwest of Whitby in North Yorkshire.
The small hamlet of Slingsby is about six miles west of Malton in the Ryedale district of North Yorkshire.
Stillingfleet is a delightful, attractive little North Yorkshire Village of approx 160 houses and a population of just 350 inhabitants.
Sutton-on-the-Forest is a delightfully picturesque village in South Yorkshire, about eight miles north of York.
The ancient market town of Thirsk, capital of Herriot Country, is situated in North Yorkshire, in the area known as Hambleton. The Yorkshire Dales National Park lies just to the west of Thirsk.
Thornton-le-Dale, sometimes referred to as Thornton Dale, is a delightful parish of 2,000 residents in North Yorkshire. This idyllic village is centred on the village green with its traditional market cross and old stocks.
Weaverthorpe is situated in the Great Wold Valley of the Yorkshire Wolds. It sits astride the Gypsey Race - a stream running through this chalk valley which now flows only at times of rain.
West Witton is a historic and rural village set in the Yorkshire Dales National Park. When you enter the village it is as if time stood still. The village overlooks Penhill which is excellent for fell walking and the views from its summit.
The town of Whitby is on the coast of North Yorkshire near Scarborough. It sits at the River Esk estuary and is spread along the steep sided banks of the river valley.
York has many museums, galleries, mediaeval churches and historic houses - too many to mention - but most of the main highlights are packed into the city centre within the well-preserved City Walls.