Tours of Excellence
Tours of Excellence
Tours of Excellence

7 Day - Yorkshire Tour of England, UK

Day One – Treasurer's House - York
Today enjoy an open top bus tour of York, departing from Exhibition Square before enjoying a haunted cellar tour at the Treasurer’s House. Originally home to the treasurers of York Minster and built over a Roman road, the house is not all that it seems. Nestled behind the Minster, its size, splendour and contents are a constant surprise to visitors – as are the famous ghost stories. The house was carefully restored between 1897 and 1930 by one remarkable man, wealthy local industrialist Frank Green, with rooms presented in a variety of historic styles. Outside is an attractive formal sunken garden and herb garden. This will be followed by some free time for lunch before a visit to York Minster, the largest Medieval Gothic Cathedral north of the Alps and with its collection of stained glass, staying on for Evensong.

Day Two – Picking Castle - North Yorkshire Moors Railway - Overnight Yorkshire
Depart York for the journey into the Yorkshire Dales for the journey to Pickering for a visit to Pickering Castle, with its splendid mote built by William the Conqueror and was later used as a Royal ranch. On then for a trip on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, containing 18 miles of preserved steam railway, running through the spectacular scenery of the North Yorkshire Moors and the line has been owned by the North York Moors Historical Railway Trust, who has run the line as a living museum since 1974. Take the short journey to your hotel for the next 4 nights.

Day Three – Leyburn - Aysgarth Falls, Askrigg - Hawes - Richmond - Overnight Yorkshire
Early departure for a full day tour of the Yorkshire Dales, an area of great natural beauty starting with a visit to Leyburn, an attractive market town with superb views over Wensleydale before taking the journey to Aysgarth Falls, near the village of Aysgarth where the River Ure tumbles over a series of broad limestone steps and although not particularly high, the waterfalls are one of Wensleydale's most famous beauty spots (having been featured in the Kevin Costner film Robin Hood - Prince of Thieves). On then to Askrigg in the heart of Wensleydale, the unassuming little hamlet which fell into the worldwide media spotlight when it became the location for filming All Creatures Great and Small, the TV series inspired by the stories of Yorkshire vet James Herriot. Continue to the thriving market town of Hawes, home to Wensleydale Cheese and there are several craft workshops, antique and other specialty shops and the name, Hawes, means a 'pass between mountains' and today is market day, so an opportunity to browse the market stalls. On then to Richmond, a historic market town, with Norman castle, Georgian architecture, cobbled market place, monuments and abbeys, the fast flowing river Swale, and breathtaking scenery and a town that inspires painters and poets, past and present. Return to your hotel for overnight.

Day Four – Thirsk - Northallerton - Rievaulx Abbey - Helmsley - Overnight Yorkshire
Depart for a morning visit to Thirsk, an old fashioned market town with a cobbled market place dating back to medieval times and connections with James Herriot. On then to the market town of Northallerton and today is market day, so an opportunity to browse the stalls. This will be followed by a visit to Rievaulx Abbey, set in a deep wooded valley by the River Rye and you can see some of the most spectacular monastic ruins in England, dating from the 12th Century. On then to the unspoilt market town of Helmsley, dominated by its castle ruins, which date back to around the year 1200 and like so many Royalist strongholds, it was blown up by the Parliamentarians in the Civil War to prevent it from being used again. Return to your hotel for overnight.

Day Five – Whitby Abbey - Robin Hood's Bay - Scarborough - Overnight Yorkshire
Depart your hotel for the journey to Whitby, one of the most picturesque ports in England and was home to seafaring hero, Captain James Cook, who discovered Australia and the harbour is set in a ravine at the mouth of the River Esk. Dominated by the cliff top ruined Abbey, the narrow alleys and quaint streets climb down to the busy quayside, with its harbour side houses and small shops filled with crafts, curios, and antiques. Enjoy a visit to the ruins of the Abbey, which are said to have provided inspiration for Bram Stoker's Gothic masterpiece Dracula. In the book Whitby is the destination for the doomed ship Demeter, which carries Dracula to England. On then to the coastal village of Robin Hood’s Bay, renowned for its stunning scenery and its history began long before any association with the mythical figure from Sherwood Forest. There is written record, dating back from 1536, of a "fishing townlet of 20 boats", by which time there were about 50 houses. For many years smuggling was an organised activity in the bay. Any visitor to the village today can well imagine the difficulties the excizemen and dragoons from Whitby would have had in tracking down smugglers in the warren of tiny streets. In fact there is a local legend regarding the tunnels and passage that once linked many of the houses in the village: it has been said that a bail of silk could pass from the bottom of the village to the top without seeing daylight. Continue to the Victorian seaside resort of Scarborough for some free time for exploring before taking the return journey to your hotel.

Day Six – Ripon Cathedral - Fountains Abbey & Studley Royal - Harrogate
Depart your hotel for the journey Ripon, a small city with the big personality nestled in the Yorkshire Dales. It is one of Britain’s oldest cities with stunning Georgian and Medieval buildings and links with Alice in Wonderland. On arrival enjoy a visit to Ripon Cathedral, containing one of the oldest crypts in and an opportunity to view its marvellous choir stalls. This will be followed by an afternoon visit to Fountains Abbey & Studley Royal, one of the most remarkable sites in , sheltered in a secluded valley. On arrival visit the spectacular remains of a 12th Century Cistercian Abbey with one of the finest surviving monastic watermills in Britain and the elegant ornamental lakes, avenues, temples and cascades provide a succession of unforgettable eye-catching vistas in an atmosphere of peace and tranquillity. Finally to the Spa town of Harrogate, with its fabulous shopping, cafe culture, fine cuisine, glorious gardens and graceful architecture. Check-in at your accommodation for in Harrogate for the next 2 nights.

Day Seven - Bolton Abbey Estate - Skipton Castle - Harrogate
After breakfast take the journey to the Bolton Abbey Estate, where Wordsworth, Turner and Landseer were all inspired by this romantic and varied landscape. The estate is centred around Bolton Priory, founded in 1154 and is the Yorkshire home of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire. It provides 80 miles of footpaths to enjoy some of the most spectacular landscape in England. Continue into the pretty market town of Skipton with its cobbled streets and canals for some free time for exploring before enjoying a late afternoon visit to Skipton Castle, guardian to the gateway to the Yorkshire Dales for over 900 years. This unique fortress is one of the most complete and well-preserved medieval castles in England, standing on a 40-metre high crag. Return to Harrogate for overnight.

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