The Yorkshire Dales are famed for their rolling hills, beautiful natural landmarks and tumbling waterfalls – but did you know that the region’s villages are just as picturesque as its natural landscapes? If you’re planning on exploring the national park, take the time to wander around one of its many traditional villages, admiring the stone buildings, discovering independent shops and cafes, and perhaps popping into a couple of cosy pubs.
At the edge of the Dales you’ll find one of the largest towns in the region, boasting traditional stone cottages and pubs and plenty of lovely local walks. Head to Ruskin’s View, just a short stroll through the churchyard to a dramatic viewpoint over the River Lune where Turner famously sat and captured the landscape.
Located in the heart of Wensleydale, Hawes is one of the most picturesque villages in the region thanks to its traditional stone houses and the lovely little river that runs through it. The town is surrounded by open countryside and is close to Hardraw Force, the tallest single drop waterfall in the UK.
One of the loveliest of all the villages in the Peak District, Appletreewick lives up to its utterly beautiful sounding name. There are just a few stone cottages scattered along the road and the centre of the village is dominated by the splendid pub that is covered in ivy that changes colour throughout the seasons.
Known for its family-run breweries, Masham is a creative little town in Lower Wensleydale with a fascinating community of local artists and authors. The church spire dominates the horizon when approaching the town, fitting in beautifully with the hills that roll behind it and the abundance of trees and greenery.
The tiny settlement of Clapham is one of the best starting points for a long hike up one of the national park’s highest peaks, Ingleborough. Don’t hurry the start of your walk though! This pretty little village is well worth lingering over, if only to pick out your favourite of the small cottages overlooking the babbling brook that runs through the middle of the village.
Ignore the main road and this is one of the most picturesque villages in the Yorkshire Dales. Stone cottages and stylish barn conversions are dotted around the town, and there are several small village greens with space to sit and relax. There’s also a particularly beautiful church and two traditional country pubs to enjoy.
Yes, there are many incredible walks that take in Malham Cove, the limestone pavement and the tarn, but the village itself is also incredibly pleasant to stroll around. A collection of limestone cottages, a traditional local pub and a lovely little stream running through the middle of the village all add to its charm.