Jonathan Smith runs Where2walk, a walking company based in the Yorkshire Dales.
Exclusively for Gorgeous Cottages Blog, he’s listed his top five family-friendly walks in the Yorkshire Dales below….
The Yorkshire Dales is a wonderful area for walking, I have spent the past 15 years discovering its hidden gems, many long walks, but also shorter ones as well. Having a young family has meant that ‘gentle walks that are full of interest’ is the requirement. Here are a few of my favourite family-friendly walks in the Yorkshire Dales, many of which are also pushchair friendly:
Exploring the lands of Bolton Abbey – 2.5 miles
I have visited Bolton Abbey, a 12th-century Cistercian abbey, many times and it is excellent for a young family. The River Wharfe flows next to the abbey and some excellent paths lead up into the woods on the far side. Just follow the path up to the bridge at the Cavendish Pavilion and then return back along the river bank. I have seen many families with pushchairs as well as older children on the walk. Full walk details
Gorgeous Cottages have several family-friendly holiday cottages in this area of Yorkshire.
A walk under Kilnsey Crag – 2 miles
The spectacular overhanging rock at Kilnsey is a great setting for a short walk into the limestone scenery nearby. The walk is over some fields and then joins the famous Mastiles Lane before turning back towards the crag. There may well be climbers on the rock itself to watch, and there is also an excellent café to finish the walk in. Full walk details
The waterfalls of Askrigg – 3.5 miles
The pretty village of Askrigg in Wensleydale was used for the filming of All Creatures Great and Small although for the younger visitors, it is the waterfalls that come off the hillside behind the village which will be the attraction. Discover exciting and safe places to play in, to eat picnics and to enjoy the spectacular views across the Yorkshire Dales. The youngest of children (if able to walk) will have enough to distract them from any climbing they need to do. Full walk details
Stay a while and relax at Miller’s Retreat, a beautiful Yorkshire Dales luxury holiday cottage set on the cusp of Wensleydale – a perfect option for families as each bedroom is en-suite.
Fountains Abbey & Studley Park – 3 miles
Situated close to Ripon is the best and most complete example of an abbey in the north of England. It is easy to get lost wandering around its ruins whilst the walk itself carries on through the grounds and on to the deer sanctuary of Studley Park. It is perfect for pushchairs but my children enjoyed the grounds, sense of history (Anne Boleyn stayed here) and ice cream in the tea shop with surely one of the best views in England! Full walk details
A walk along to Malham Cove – 2 miles
An easy, pushchair-friendly walk to one of the most popular sites in the Yorkshire Dales. Malham Cove is a spectacular amphitheatre of rock which you can walk right up to, whilst the more energetic can climb up the steep stone steps to its summit. Here lies a wonderful limestone pavement where amongst others Hermione and Harry pondered the difficulties of a slightly abnormal childhood. Malham village has tea shops and 2 excellent pubs. Full Walk details
Thanks to Jonathan for sharing his favourite family-friendly walks in the Yorkshire Dales with us.
My own particular favourite would have to be Fountains Abbey – my kids just love it there. But there are so many family-friendly walks in the Yorkshire Dales, you can discover something new every week, so come take a look! And if we’ve missed one of your favourites, tell us – we would love to hear about it….
And after exploring the Dales on foot, take some time to relax at one of our beautiful luxury Yorkshire Dales holiday cottages.