To help us slowdown from a frantic pace and admire new scenery, Cottage Holidays has compiled this guide to walking in Yorkshire...
1. Horsehead Moor & Deepdale
This walk of 5.5 miles is a short but breathtaking walk that takes you up the Horse Head Pass onto a remote moorland ridge. There you have the chance to take in views of three of the highest peaks in the area: Ingleborough, Whernside and Pen-y-ghent. The walk then follows the River Wharfe, which winds its way through the Dales before joining the Yorkshire Ouse. Make sure you have your SLR with you as you may catch glimpses of kingfishers, oystercatchers and dippers at the river’s edge.
2. Malham Tarn Walk
Another 5.5 mile walk, but this one looks at how through the centuries mankind has used the land. The guide shows you archaeological remains from the Mesolithic period, examples of where medieval monks farmed the land. Then as you walk the path imagine the 18th century Scottish drovers who trod the path before you bringing down thousands of cattle to market.
3. Aysgarth Falls
A circular route here takes you on a tranquil stroll through woodland walks and offers views of Bolton Castle as well as passing near it. Aysgarth is one of the prettiest waterfalls in Yorkshire and the upper fall was used as a location for the film Robin Hood Prince of Thieves. For lovers of history, the 14th century Bolton Castle was one of the places Mary, Queen of Scots, was held prisoner.
Walking can be thirsty work, and this 4.5 miler takes in a couple of Yorkshire hostelries as well as views of two more Yorkshire waterfalls. Parking at either Malham Public Car Park or the Lister Arms you ascend from the village around four hundred steps to Malham Cove. From there you head across Gordale Bridge and see examples of limestone pavement, before heading to Gordale Scar. Here, you can pause for a while enjoying the scenery of Gordale Scar where the river drops over the limestone. From there you head into the forest and Janet’s Foss, before heading back into Malham and a refreshing drink at either the Lister Arms or The Buck Inn.
5. Thuscross Reservoir
Some of the walks have shown where water naturally creates beauty as it passes through the local geology. This walk, however, shows the effect of man’s need to store water. After parking at The Stone House Inn, head past the disused quarry to the reservoir edge. Following the reservoir round you see rolling moorland and, depending on the reservoir levels, buildings from a village that was flooded in the creation of the reservoir. After your walk, you can sit in front of a nice roaring fire with a drink of your choice and sample the fare from the tearoom.
6. The Settle Railway Walk
Not all walks have to begin and end at the same place. This walk offers the chance to sample the delights of the Settle-Carlisle Railway. Leaving your car at Greenfoot car park in Settle. Head down Church Street before taking a track for about 2.5km to Stainforth House. After enjoying this picturesque location continue along the path for another 2km to the Helwith Bridge Hotel where you may pause for refreshment. Then go through the car park and walk parallel to the railway line, before following the river for about 4km to Horton in Ribblesdale. Horton has several fine cafes and pubs before you take the Settle and Carlisle railway back to Settle and your car.
7. A Railway Children walk
An iconic children’s book set at the turn of the 20th century and filmed in the Haworth area nearly fifty years ago is the inspiration for this walk. Parking at Oakworth station you can first follow the line to Mytholmes tunnel where on a paper-chase a boy got injured. Then you can head towards the children’s home “Three Chimneys” before the splendour of the Worth Valley spreads out before you. Finally, you drop into Haworth and should you wish to extend the literary aspect check out the Bronte Museum at the Parsonage before returning from Haworth to Oakworth on the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway.
8. Hawes to Sedbusk
This walk starts at the National Park Centre at Hawes. Though only 3.5 miles, it follows a steep and undulating path. However, the marvellous views make the climb worthwhile. The walk takes in panoramic views of Wensleydale and the village of Hawes where you started, together with the astonishing Hardraw Force - the longest unbroken waterfall in England. The name force comes from the Norse, Foss, which meant waterfall.
9. Reeth Low Common
Starting in Reeth Village, this walk 2.5 mile walk gives you a guided tour of Swaledale. A limestone valley formed during the last Ice Age with its narrow valley-bottom road bisecting green meadows and fields of sheep edged with dry-stone walls typical of this area. Reeth Village sits at the point where the two valleys of Swaledale and Arkengarthdale meet, two of the most northerly of the Yorkshire Dales.
10. Buckden Pike
This challenging 5 mile walk takes in a wide variety of scenery and steers you past remnants of lead mining, illustrating that in times gone by this area was not just known for farming and agriculture. This walk takes you from hill farms and hay meadows along the Upper Wharfedale to wild moorland and the vast panoramic open skies that can be seen from the top of Buckden Pike.