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England: Yorkshire Dales 4 night

  • 7 Night Route

    Price: £750
  • 6 Night Route

    Price: £660
  • 5 Night Route

    Price: £580
  • 4 Night Route

    Price: £525

From the vale to the peak in God's Own County

Back to Routes
Fountains Abbey

Fountains Abbey

Brimham Rocks

Brimham Rocks

Perfect place for a short stop in Pateley Bridge

Perfect place for a short stop in Pateley Bridge

Walking towards Burnsall

Walking towards Burnsall

Malham Cove (photo: Phil Simnett)

Malham Cove (photo: Phil Simnett)

Negotiating some limestone pavement (photo: Phil Simnett)

Negotiating some limestone pavement (photo: Phil Simnett)

Curious sheep on the slopes below Ingleborough

Curious sheep on the slopes below Ingleborough

The rapids of Stainforth Force (photo: Phil Simnett)

The rapids of Stainforth Force (photo: Phil Simnett)

The Dales town of Settle

The Dales town of Settle

Field barn in the Wharfe valley (photo: Phil Simnett)

Field barn in the Wharfe valley (photo: Phil Simnett)

Ingleborough on the horizon

Ingleborough on the horizon

A clapper bridge at Austwick Beck

A clapper bridge at Austwick Beck

A successful ascent of Ingleborough!

A successful ascent of Ingleborough!

Price: £525
Nights: 4
Grade:
Walk: 3½-6 hr/day

Travellers Reviews

One of the best. The landscapes are gorgeous - richly green with the jigsaw fields and dry stone walls and the fine old stone farms and villages.

Ripon cathedral (where I listened to a choir practice) and Studley Royal and Fountains Abbey add variety. Fine dining along the way (Clarendon and the Traddock), which was unexpected. Enjoyed meeting and walking with Shaun.

Alan Willis, Ottawa, Canada

I very much doubt that this trip could be improved.

Walking up to Simon's Seat on the first day was exhilarating and the views when reached were worth the climb. Walking along the riverside with masses of wild buttercups, bluebells and garlic flowers beneath huge chestnut trees in flower was memorable. The whole Malham day was full of surprise, and the Cove when we finally scrambled down to the bottom was an awesome sight.

Terry Fripp, Singapore

We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, as we have on all the On Foot Holidays we've done.

For us the highlights were stuffing ourselves with wild blueberries on the moor before Brimham Rocks, the rocks themselves, and the climbs up onto the moors from Arncliff and Malham. A special word for Gordon the taxi driver - he was great.

Marc Jeffery, Croatia

More independent feedback
Self-guided walking holiday in the Yorkshire Dales with On Foot Holidays

At a glance

Yorkshire Dales 4-night option (3 days walking). Misses 3 nights and starts at Kettlewell. Add extra nights (we recommend Malham and Austwick) to give you a rest in the middle and to celebrate the end.

How much walking?

Full days: 19-24 km per day, 5-6 hours walking
Using shortening options: 10-15km per day, 2¼-4 hours walking using ride-with-luggage transfers at the start of each day

Max. Grade:

From Ripon to Ingleborough through the Dales

This route, our third in England and our first in the north of the country, seeks to show walkers the two sides of Yorkshire’s rural heritage, and was designed by local residents and On Foot clients Shaun and Lynda Callaghan. Our 4-night version starts at Kettlewell).

The route then climbs steeply into limestone country via justly famous Malham “Cove”, before traversing the market town of Settle to your destination, Austwick village, nestling in the dale below the gaunt massif of Ingleborough, one of Yorkshire’s “three peaks”, and your final challenge.

Stay in country pubs and comfortable B&Bs, upgrading if you wish to smarter hotels, and eat well – this shorter version has some fine dining to supplement the hearty Yorkshire fare that will ensure you do not flag during these long days (though shortening options are available).

Walked by On Foot staff: Debbie and Simon

Route Highlights

  • Yorkshire pudding and Gallic flair in quintessential pubs
  • Drystone walls and unspoilt villages
  • The “Cove” and cliff of Malham
  • Settle and the steam railway to Carlisle
  • The ascent of Ingleborough on your final day

We recommend this route if you a looking for: Villages and farms

We Recommend

Extra night in Austwick, Eating at French owned the Gamecock (Austwick), or at the Kings Head in Kettlewell and the famous Traddock in Austwick (also available as upgrade accommodation)

Limestone Country

Geologically speaking this is an important area, as it was the nursery training for the famous English geologists of the 18th and 19th century who in turn laid the foundations for the science of sedimentary geology (compare also our “Dorset” walk).

The limestone pavements around Malham and Ingleborough are fine examples and will challenge the adventurous walker as well (though can be avoided for those who wish to preserve their ankles).

How much Walking?

Full days: 19-24 km per day, 5-6 hours walking
Using shortening options: 10-15km per day, 2¼-4 hours walking using ride-with-luggage transfers at the start of each day

Clear paths in the main, though the signage lapses on occasions and so an understanding of maps, use of compass and close attention to the notes is sometimes needed.  A walk for everyone courtesy of the (taxi) shortening options (see below).

Medium-hard: Average cumulative uphill stretches (CUSs) 733m (680m-820m) per day.

OR

Medium: CUSs 408m (250m-525m) per day using shortening options where available and/or riding with luggage for part of walk each day (shortening rides included in price).

GPX file available for handheld GPS or smartphone App for complete route.

Important note: Times given for each day are  walking times for an “average” walker and exclude stops. “CUSs” stands for “Cumulative Uphill Stretches” and measures the aggregated ascents in each day, expressed in metres of climb. See “Walk Grading” for more information.

When to go?

Best walking is throughout the late spring, summer and early autumn, though be aware that during the summer holidays and weekends the hotels we use can be busy and accommodation less available.  Generally cooler walking than in the south of England and mainland Europe.

Start Dates

Recommended
Possible
Unavailable

Weather Chart

 

Itinerary

About the Route

Day 1 - Arrive in Kettlewell

After a taxi ride from Skipton station (included), relax in this exceptional village situated at the head of a beautiful valley.  You can eat hearty Yorshire fare or more sophisticated food here - a choice of good eateries (pre-booking advisable).

Day 2 - Kettlewell to Malham

The highlights of Malham Tarn and Malham Cove must be on anyone’s list who visits Yorkshire, let alone walking a bit of the Pennine Way too! After a pleasant leg stretcher of an ascent and a couple of pretty riverside villages on the way, your route climbs via the Monk’s Path to the remote, wild landscape above Malham before a descent to the highest upland lake in England and on to walk on the extraordinary lunar landscape above the Cove, before a night in attractive, busy Malham village. (Medium-hard: 5½ hrs, 18½ km, CUSs 700m, or Easy-medium: 3¾ hrs, 14 km, CUSs 525m with ride-with-luggage start)

Option

If the weather is poor, or you would just like an easier day, take a taxi to Malham and do one of two easier walks in this lovely valley (these can also form the basis of an extra day and night spent at Malham, a good mid-route resting place).

Day 3 - Malham to Austwick

Lots to see today, and choices to be made too. First a sustained, but fairly gentle, climb out of Malham with a good view onto the Cove. Then a remote section with fine views opening up into the valley where Settle lies – and a choice: either to include some additional walking (extra 2.3km, CUSs 70m) and a sneak preview of Ingleborough – your final walk’s goal – or take a more direct route along the Dales High Way to Settle, and lunch. In the afternoon you walk alongside the River Ribble – either right next to it, or, for more interest, via a fascinating and extensive, lime kiln. Finally a delightful entrance through the fields into the little village of Austwick. (Medium-hard: 5hrs, 20¼ km, CUSs 680m, or ride-with-luggage to  Settle, and walk the rest – easy-medium: 2½ hrs, 10½ kms, CUSs 250m)

Option

This could also be a day for a ride-with-luggage into Settle and a trip on the Settle-Carlisle railway line - best when they are running steam trains (needs to be pre-booked and is expensive!), but lovely even when not.  The Ribblehead Viaduct is a classic of Victorian engineering.  Timetables in your Walker's Pack!

Day 4 - The Ingleborough circuit

A fitting climax to your walk. Taking in either the ‘Norber erratics’ or a medieval clapper bridge (or both with diversion) the day takes you up onto a limestone pavement, over Beggar’s Stile and off along a route up the easiest approach to Ingleborough, perhaps the most iconic hill of the Three Peaks range. The return takes you past Gaping Gill sink hole, through Trow Gill gorge and offers Ingleborough Cave as a distraction en route to pretty Clapham village and a final wander through grassy fields back to Austwick, nestling in the landscape. (Hard: 6hrs, 19½ km, CUSs 820m, or easier option avoiding Ingleborough itself Medium: 3½ hrs, 14km, CUSs 450m)

Option

A couple of shorter, lower circuits around Austwick village are also offered, taking in a clapper bridge, and Clapham Village (lunch here seems right!), or just laze at your accommodation with a good book... we recommend an extra night here if you want to do everything!

Depart for home

A taxi is included back to Settle (or Clapham) station for your leavetaking of this quiet and beautiful region of England.

Travel Information

INFORMATION FOR ARRIVING TO THE 4 NIGHT ROUTE, starting in Kettlewell

ARRIVING BY AIR
The best “local” airport is either Leeds-Bradford or Manchester. Intercontinental flights use Manchester or one of the London airports.

Please contact us for transfer advice in view of the options available.  A final taxi transfer from Skipton to your first accommodation is included, and one can be included for a supplement from Leeds or Harrogate.

Flight information can change rapidly and not all flights run daily. Please do check directly with the airlines’ websites or Skyscanner (see below) before finalising any booking with us. Do not book your flights until we have confirmed that we have provisionally reserved accommodation for you.

For up-to-date schedules and flights from all airports check Skyscanner.

See “Getting to the start of the walk” below for more detailed transfer information

ARRIVING BY TRAIN
Skipton is the nearest station for 4- and 5-night versions starting in Hebden or Kettlewell, both requiring taxis from Skipton (included).

Nearest railway station:

Start: Skipton
Finish: Settle or Clapham

 

Getting to the start of the walk

Transfer times and methods are suggested from Leeds-Bradford Airport, Manchester Airport and London (centre).

LEEDS-BRADFORD
Outward: Train to Skipton then included taxi.
Return: Taxi to Settle railway station (included), train to Leeds, then half-hourly bus shuttle to airport OR Pre-bookable taxi direct to airport.

MANCHESTER
Outward: Train to Skipton then included taxi
Return: Taxi to Clapham, train to airport via Lancaster (total 2½ hrs) OR Pre-bookable taxi direct to airport

LONDON (centre):
Outward: Train to Skipton then included taxi.
Return: Taxi to Settle (included), train to London via Leeds (total 4 hrs) OR Pre-bookable taxi direct to airport

Full transfer advice, including timetables, is provided in your Walkers’ Pack. Contact us if you would like additional pre-booking information.

Where You'll Stay

A lovely range of accommodation, including excellent B&B’s, a tea rooms, four pubs, and two country house hotels (as upgrade/alternatives).

Kettlewell – Belk’s B&B (B&B)

Night 1

Kettlewell – Belk’s B&B (B&B)

A well-known boutique tea room with three excellent bedrooms over (no twins). Zarina is one of nature's hosts.

Malham – River House (B&B)

Night 2

Malham – River House (B&B)

Great B&B with excellent breakfasts provided by Ann and Alex.

Austwick – Wood View Guest House (B&B)

Night 3 & 4

Austwick – Wood View Guest House (B&B)

Sue and David Dewhirst run a first class B&B right on the green, and only a short walk for dinner at one of two great eateries. Upgrade to one of the de luxe rooms (doubles only) for your final nights.

Austwick – The Traddock (B&B)

Night 3 & 4 (Upgrade)

Austwick – The Traddock (B&B)

Famous country house hotel on the edge of the village with a first class kitchen and some lovely rooms. Good to relax in at the end of your walk.

In Kettlewell, if Belks B&B is full (or if you need a twin room), and in Malham if River House is full, we do have some alternative hotels.

The Blue Bell Inn in Kettlewell (below) is a lively pub with modest bedrooms in an annexe at the rear. The young staff are attentive and friendly.

  Kettlewell- Blue Bell Inn (B&B)

The Lister Arms (below) is the grand old daddy of accommodation in Malham, with decent bedrooms and good pub-style food.

Malham - Lister Arms (B&B)  Malham - Lister Arms (B&B)

Beck Hall (below), also in Malham, is a friendly riverside hotel close to the village centre, where dogs are always welcome.

  Malham - Beck Hall (B&B)

Prices

Price: £525 for 4 nights

Total 4 nights in double/twin room, all breakfasts, luggage transfers (and shortening rides if required) between all hotels on walking route; taxi to Settle/Clapham station at the end, full Walkers Pack with route directions, maps, transfer and background information; local telephone support.

All prices are per person unless otherwise indicated, and are based on a standard booking in May. Prices may vary seasonally and a fixed price will be given to you before you commit.

Single Room Supplement: From £130
Lone Traveller Additional Supplement: From £125
Large party saving: Groups of more than 2 people (on identical itinerary) –  discount of at least £10 per person
Maximum party size: 10

 

Add Ons

Sending Walkers Packs to addresses outside the UK and Ireland:  £10-£40 (per pack, location dependent)

Taxi from Skipton (best), Leeds or Leeds-Bradford Airport to Kettlewell: From £25 (1-4 pers.) (Skipton)

Travellers Reviews

One of the best. The landscapes are gorgeous - richly green with the jigsaw fields and dry stone walls and the fine old stone farms and villages.

Ripon cathedral (where I listened to a choir practice) and Studley Royal and Fountains Abbey add variety. Fine dining along the way (Clarendon and the Traddock), which was unexpected. Enjoyed meeting and walking with Shaun.

Alan Willis, Ottawa, Canada

I very much doubt that this trip could be improved.

Walking up to Simon's Seat on the first day was exhilarating and the views when reached were worth the climb. Walking along the riverside with masses of wild buttercups, bluebells and garlic flowers beneath huge chestnut trees in flower was memorable. The whole Malham day was full of surprise, and the Cove when we finally scrambled down to the bottom was an awesome sight.

Terry Fripp, Singapore

We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, as we have on all the On Foot Holidays we've done.

For us the highlights were stuffing ourselves with wild blueberries on the moor before Brimham Rocks, the rocks themselves, and the climbs up onto the moors from Arncliff and Malham. A special word for Gordon the taxi driver - he was great.

Marc Jeffery, Croatia

More independent feedback
Reserve your dates Add to shortlist
Shaun Callaghan

Route designed by:

Shaun Callaghan

Shaun and his wife Lynda describe themselves as bilingual, speaking both broad Yorkshire and a Yorkshire version of English. They are obviously proud of their Yorkshire roots. A couple of years ago they took early retirement and moved to their favourite walking area of the Three Peaks of Yorkshire, living just a few hundred yards outside the National Park boundary and only four miles from the summit of Ingleborough.

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