Swaledale is known for its dramatic and breathtaking scenery and the sheer beauty of its wild and secluded countryside. The view down the Dale was shortlisted by singer Lesley Garrett on ITV’s Britain’s Favourite View and The Dales programme highlights the beautiful scenery in Ravenseat which is only a few miles from our holiday cottages. The River Swale provides the focus through this deep and narrow dale, flowing over a succession of waterfalls which offer beautiful spots for walkers, cyclists and for picnics. Swaledale is renowned for its heather moors, traditional dry stone walls and barns, waterfalls and wildflower meadows which offer fantastic colour in Spring. Swaledale is also home to many species of birds and wildlife including grouse, pheasant, curlews and hares. Artists, writers and photographers will find this a beautiful location with plenty of inspiration right on the doorstep.
Swaledale is a walkers’ paradise with a wide choice of walks for all abilities direct from the door. The walk over Kisdon Hill is one of the Ramblers top 50 walks in the UK and offers stunning views of the countryside and the River Swale as it twists and turns along the valley. The Three Peaks of Whernside, Ingleborough and Pen-y-ghent provide ever popular challenges for keen walkers. Fell-runners will also find this a great place to train – you could even enter the Swaledale Marathon or Muker Show Fell Race, both incredibly challenging?!
The Dales are a great place for motorcyclists offering access to some of the best biking roads in the UK with spectacular scenery all around. The A686, arguably one of the best motorcycling roads in the UK, is only a few miles to the North and is part of Bike Magazine’s test route.
Swaledale was one of the favourite areas of ‘veterinary’ James Herriot and Swaledale House actually features on the inside cover of his book of his life in the Dales. Much of the scenery seen in the TV series was filmed in Swaledale and neighbouring Wensleydale. ‘Skeldale House’ – the vets’ practice and home, along with the pub known as ‘The Drovers Arms’ can be found in the lovely old town of Askrigg, around 10 miles from our cottages.
The area offers a wide range of visitor attractions – including historical castles, craft workshops, beautiful gardens, food outlets and open farms. The fabulous Settle-Carlisle railway offers a great day out with spectacular views and lovely traditional stations.
There are plenty of pubs and restaurants offering local specialities and real ales. There is a local shop at Muker, a selection of shops at Hawes and larger supermarkets and a railway station at Kirkby Stephen – approximately 12 miles away.
The Yorkshire Dales
The Yorkshire Dales is an excellent base for outdoor activities, with some of the best walking in the UK, encompassing high fells, valleys, streams and rivers, and pretty villages and market towns. The finest long distance walks pass through the dales including the Pennine Way, Coast to Coast, The Dales Way and the Ribble Way. For cyclists, there is a network of byways and bridleways to enjoy away from the busy roads including the Yorkshire Dales and Cumbria Cycleways.
The National Park covers 680 square miles and offers over 20 main dales to explore, each one differing in character and atmosphere but all offering dramatic, beautiful countryside. Visit the many castles, abbeys and stately homes in the area or spend a pleasant hour or two in one of the many characterful Dales pubs which offer great real ale and good food.
There’s no shortage of activities – walking, cycling, birdwatching, hang-gliding or paragliding, potholing in limestone caves, climbing the local crags or fishing in one of the beautiful rivers.
Our cottages are only an hour’s drive from the Lake District making it the ideal location to explore both the Dales and the Lake District National Parks.