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Lakes to Dales and York, based in Harrogate?

Lakes to Dales and York, based in Harrogate?

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London, United...
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1. Re: Lakes to Dales and York, based in Harrogate?

I am sure you will get some good advice from the Yorkshire experts but having visited the area on holiday of all the possibles on your list Fountains Abbey would be top of my list.

A lovely day out ( or easily half a day at least ) and if the weather is good then walking the whole estate is really nice.

Yorkshire Dales...
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2. Re: Lakes to Dales and York, based in Harrogate?

A few thoughts.

Out of your 3 suggested places to base yourself (Thirsk, Harrogate, Grassington) only one of these is in the Dales. They are also very different types of place and all have pros and cons as to why you should chose them.

I'll try and separate the 3 choices into what would be easier for you at each place.

Harrogate - (I lived here for 20 years) - conference and spa town, loads of choices of accommodation unless there is a major exhibition on. Good train link to York as you have already mentioned. You can also catch a bus from Harrogate which goes through Ripley and stops at Ripon. However you'd then have to find your walk to Fountains which is reasonably close by. But it's an easy drive from Harrogate too - so you could do Ripley (don't miss the ice cream shop), Ripon and Fountains Abbey all in a day. Very nice day out. Fountains is a huge estate and also includes Studley Royal Watergardens.

Thirsk - small market town in the Vale of Mowbray and NOT the Dales. Many people base themselves here because it has Herriot connections, is reasonably close to the Dales and the Moors and has a railway station. However please note that the railway station is a fair way outside town.

If you stayed here you could have a day in York by train, and another day where you could head towards the Moors and visit Rievaulx (needs about an hour) and Castle Howard (you could spend hours here, loads to see)

Grassington - this is a large, busy and popular Wharfedale village. Besides the fact it is smack in the Dales it doesn't make sense to stay here when I consider your list of places you'd like to see. No railway line! Pretty place with walks all around, but I'd not advise this as your base.

As far as Malham goes, head for the Cove (not the Tarn) as it is amazing. There's a large car park and then a walk to the base of the cove. You can walk up it (roughly hewn steps). It's not as bad as it looks (my kids did it when young) and it's well worth it for the views and the amazing limestone pavement.

You could of course just stay in York for two nights, have one day exploring York and the other day doing either the Ripley/Fountains day I have suggested above, or the Rievaulx/Castle Howard day also suggested. Don't ask me to choose between the two as they would both be terrific!

Hope this helps.

Edited: 29 March 2014, 11:14
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3. Re: Lakes to Dales and York, based in Harrogate?

Personally I would stay one or two nights IN the Dales then use the next day to travel to York via the likes of Harrogate. Once you reach York return the car then stay overnight and take a train to London late the next day.

Yorkshire Dales...
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4. Re: Lakes to Dales and York, based in Harrogate?

I did think about the option stated at 3 above, but none of the places on your hit list (Fountains Abbey & Studley Royal Park, Castle Howard, Ripon, Ripley, Haworth, Rievaulx Abbey) are in the Dales.

Depends how much you want to see the Dales I suppose?

5. Re: Lakes to Dales and York, based in Harrogate?

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Yorkshire Dales...
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6. Re: Lakes to Dales and York, based in Harrogate?

Castle Howard is set in the Howardian Hills, very close to the North York Moors National Park, and I believe Rievaulx in in the Park itself.

The area between the two parks (Vale of York, Ryedale, Vale of Mowbray) is fine but obviously not as spectacular as the National Parks.

I agree you have some choices to make. I can advise (and I know what I'd do personally) but only you can make the final decision!

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7. Re: Lakes to Dales and York, based in Harrogate?

Hello Bill.Have a look at this www.thewalkingenglishman.com/dales17.htm It might help.I did part of the route via Janet's Foss and over the top of the Cove.I then walked down the steps and back to Malham.There is a visitors centre where you can get more info to help plan your route.I did this as part of a weekend break in Skipton.I did not go as far as the Tarn.

8. Re: Lakes to Dales and York, based in Harrogate?

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Yorkshire Dales...
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9. Re: Lakes to Dales and York, based in Harrogate?

Ok.

Visit Malham on way across from the Lakes.

Stay in York for two nights (so that I could wander the city in the evening when I returned from my outing)

Explore York for one day

Do the Rievaulx/Castle Howard outing the other day.

My reasoning is that although Fountains is wonderful, you will be getting to see two truly amazing sites plus you will get to see some of the Moors too. This would just tip it for me.

10. Re: Lakes to Dales and York, based in Harrogate?

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