With jaw-dropping natural scenery, charming towns, wild moors, chalky stone buildings and rich history, Yorkshire’s variety (and undeniable beauty) makes it one of the best county’s to visit in England. Nicknamed God’s Own Country, there are two National Parks, a handful of beaches, cascading waterfalls and plenty of wildlife to admire here, making it a great location for lovers of outdoor pursuits – so don’t forget your hiking boots. Whether you’re travelling with the whole family or enjoying a romantic break for two, there’s a whole host of things to see and do in this gem of The North – from exploring it’s bustling cities, to admiring the architecture, wandering quirky museums, farm shop lunch stops, enchanting cave tours and more.
In addition to action-packed activities, you’ve got your fair share of history too – with opulent stately homes, romantic castles, medieval towns and olde-worlde abbeys to admire. Or, if you’d prefer to tour the destination’s vibrant culinary scene instead of it’s architecture, there’s an abundance of restaurants, cafes, pop-ups and foodie experiences to be had, thanks to Yorkshire’s thriving local artisan food scene. With a collection of luxury properties available to check into, your Yorkshire holidays will be nothing short of spectacular.
There’s a treasure trove of things to see and do in this beautiful county, whether you want to soak up the culture, visit the historic landmarks, or simply admire the natural wonders. If you’re artistic, visit the Henry Moore Institute for a one-of-a-kind exhibition featuring unique sculptures, or perhaps the David Hockney exhibition in Salts Mill is more your thing, with galleries and art-focused stores to browse. Included in the county’s rich history is 900-year-old Skipton Castle, one of the most popular and best-preserved medieval castles in England; Kirkstall Abbey is another must-visit, situated beside the River Aire this attraction has beautiful gardens (perfect for a picnic) plus the popular Abbey House Museum, which houses a hidden Victorian street inside – great for the kids to explore. You can’t visit Yorkshire without visiting the famous Brontë Parsonage Museum, where you can discover Charlotte, Emily and Anne’s literary work in the building they once lived and wrote in.
Yorkshire has a thriving artisan food and drink scene with plenty of local produce to tuck into during your visit, from world-famous Yorkshire puddings to a slab of Wallace & Gromit’s favourite cracker topping, Wensleydale. Other popular things to try include Game, which can be sampled in The Chopping Block, a fine-dining restaurant owned by Michael Hjort, former Sous Chef of Michel Roux Jr. For the sweet tooth’s out there, be sure to grab a fat rascal on your travels – Yorkshire’s traditional fruit cake, of course! You’ll find these moreish buns decorated with almond flakes and a glace cherry, perfect for that elevenses’ treat (or any hour of the day, really). Similarly, the Yorkshire curd tart is a popular choice accompanied by a brew, typically made with sugar, lemon zest, melted butter, eggs and curd cheese – which you’re sure to find on the menu at York’s famous Bettys Café Tea Rooms. For more foodie inspiration, we’ve written a Yorkshire artisan food and drink guide so you can eat your way around this gem in the North.
Thanks to Yorkshire’s rich history, there’s a whole host of quirky museums to explore during your visit – especially if you’re looking to keep the kids entertained! If you like old school trains (or even if you don’t), the National Railway Museum in York is a popular pastime, with over a million railway-related locomotives to marvel over, from the Duchess of Hamilton to the only bullet train outside of Japan. The National Science & Media Museum is a great choice for TV and Film enthusiasts, with plenty to see and do across its seven floors of galleries; or perhaps you want to delve a little deeper into the county’s past (literally!) with a trip to the National Coal Mining Museum – once the real-life Caphouse Colliery – where you can take a guided tour and weave through underground tunnels. If you wish to soak up some local culture, The Graves Gallery in Sheffield is your go-to, with an impressive visual art collection from a variety of great artists; wander the gallery yourself or attend one of the lunchtime workshops to learn more.
It’s safe to say that this part of the UK isn’t short of natural beauty, with enough rolling countryside, wild moors, lush woodland and stretches of coastline to get lost in for the entirety of your visit. Undoubtedly one of the first places to visit is the spectacular Yorkshire Dales National Park, crowned as one of the greenest parts of the UK. Within its tranquil landscape, you’ll find quaint stone-built villages, fine limestone formations, cascading waterfalls and flower-rich meadows that house over 120 species of wildlife – making it the perfect place to ramble, whatever the weather. For an oasis of calm guaranteed not to rain on you, the stunning glasshouses at Sheffield Winter Gardens offer a spot of serenity, with over 2,500 plants to admire. If you like to be by the coast, do the three and a half mile walk to the tip of Spurn Point, a unique tidal island that juts out from the Holderness Coast like a teardrop. Or if you’re feeling more adventurous, grab a helmet and discover one of Britain’s largest underground cave chambers at Gaping Gill, where you’ll find the famous cascading waterfall, Fell Beck.