As the natural world begins to transform from lush greens to crisp crimson colours before your very eyes, get out and enjoy autumn walks in Yorkshire. Our favourite time of year is Just as the leaves begin to change colour and the weather is bearable, a brisk walk can make you feel revitalised.
Some of Yorkshire’s scenic locations look especially great in autumn and we’ve created a list of some of our favourite points of interest so you can make the most of this season. Instead of curling up with a book and hibernating, get out and explore God’s Own Country.
Enjoy a tranquil lakeside walk when visiting Ripley Castle & Gardens. It is one of the most picturesque places to visit where you can be transported to another time in history for mystery, wildlife and peaceful sights and sounds. It feels like you’ve stepped into a mid-century novel as you wander around the grounds of this 14th-Century country house 3 miles north of Harrogate, North Yorkshire.
Huge lakes, ancient trees, and bird songs are what the doctor ordered this autumn and this is the perfect place to enjoy them all. The reflections from the lake make for great photography opportunities for any avid snappers out there. Ripley, Harrogate HG3 3AY
2. Dalby Forest – Autumn Walks in Yorkshire
A favourite of The Yorkshireman’s, Dalby Forest in the North York Moors has lots and lots of beautiful walks, whether you want to potter along the riverside, trek uphill through the forest or just go for a coffee and enjoy your surroundings. It’s quite the beast of the forest, spanning a whopping 8,000 acres and providing ample greenery for the lucky folk that live nearby to enjoy.
It’s a great family day out with something for everybody. Visitors of Dalby Forest can enjoy the choice of 13 different walking trails – with varying scenery including lake views, sights across the valley, forest trails and fascinating rock formations. You can even take the bikes and enjoy the trails out there. Dalby Visitor Centre, Low Dalby, Thornton-Le-Dale, Pickering
3. Bolton Abbey
Found on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales, Bolton Abbey Estate is a huge expanse of land waiting to be explored. It might be getting too cold for the stepping stones, but there is something uniquely beautiful about this place in the autumn. There is nothing like the crunch of fallen leaves beneath your feet as you potter around in nature. And, Bolton Abbey’s trail that takes you through the woodland beneath a canopy of trees is the perfect autumn walk in Yorkshire to enjoy.
Don’t forget to take a snap of the iconic abbey in all its glory – the golden brown leaves frame it perfectly along the walkway, making for some stunning views. Bolton Abbey, Skipton, North Yorkshire, BD23 6EX
4. Robin Hood’s Bay – Autumn Walks in Yorkshire
It wouldn’t be autumn without braving a brisk walk along the cliffs of the Yorkshire Coast. Even with grey skies and rough seas, there is something mesmerising about the coastline which makes it one of our favourite autumn walks in yorkshire. Robin Hood’s Bay looks vulnerable yet stoic as you head towards it. What makes it so special? Could it be the sandy beaches, rock pools, or scenic views? Maybe it’s the heritage coastal walks with incredible views over the red-roofed fishing village? Maybe it’s a mixture of them all. We’ll let you decide.
All we know is you’ll never appreciate a brew more than after tackling rough winds on a cold autumn walk. Robin Hoods Bay, Whitby, YO22 4RD
One of Yorkshire’s most popular waterfalls, Aysgarth Falls is found on the River Ure, near Leyburn and is a trio of small waterfalls. These waterfalls make for great autumn walks in Yorkshire as they tend to be in full flow compared to summertime after the good rain that we usually get in those autumn months. Crisp autumn walks with the relaxing sounds of flowing water. What more could you possibly want?
You can easily access the Yorkshire Dales waterfall from the village of Aysgarth. It is a popular summer spot to visit, but we feel it is much better in autumn as it just hits differently. Aysgarth Falls National Park Centre, Church Bank, Aysgarth, Leyburn DL8 3TH
Found in Leeds, its vast ground is a popular choice for families to take a day trip out and it’s no surprise why. The 1,500-acre estate offers the perfect opportunity for a range of breezy autumn walks. The 6-mile circular holds, which is a popular choice for most offer some beautiful scenery along the way including varying species of plants and wildlife to spot. The landscaped grounds are a beautiful stroll any time of year, but in autumn it just hits different. Temple Newsam Rd, Leeds LS15 0AE
7. Marsden – Autumn Walks in Yorkshire
We stumbled upon this next walk after wanting to get out of the city and into the countryside, and boy did we find something spectacular. Reachable by train to Marsden and found on the outskirts of town is Butterley Reservoir, which is a mere 5-minute walk out of town. Get some amazing countryside air, whilst wandering around the beautiful waters edge. You can choose how far you alk depending on your ability.
There is a range of walks ranging from 4 to 10 miles. We simply walked to enjoy the beautiful autumnal views and walked back when we decided it was time for a pint. Marsden, Huddersfield, HD7 6NB
The historic market town of Knaresborough is situated along the River Nidd and has some great forest walks in the Nidd Gorge to enjoy. The Viaduct looks especially splendid surrounded by those autumnal colours.
Dating back to the 5th century, Knaresborough is one of Yorkshire’s prettiest market towns due to its unique placement – overlooking the beautiful River Nidd. The small market town has everything that a visitor could desire and more, with glorious pubs, a quaint town centre and small cafes and independent shops to experience during a visit. If you’re looking for a great snap, it’s a good time of year to go as you can get a beautiful autumn hue when the sun begins to drop at sunset.
9. Plumpton Rocks – Autumn Walks in Yorkshire
The popular tourist spot, Plumpton Rocks, Harrogate, is set to reopen after several years of restoration works. The Grade II* listed parkland and man-made lake fell into disrepair and has since had £400,000 pumped into it to bring it back up to scratch That’s why we are adding it to our top autumn walks in Yorkshire article.
Plumpton Rocks, located south of Harrogate in North Yorkshire, is a pleasure garden with a beautiful backdrop of towering rocks eroded by the wind. English Heritage named it as an area of outstanding interest.
The 30-acre park was formed back in the 1760s by creating a lake at the foot of the weathered gritstone outcrops. It offers endless opportunities to explore lakeside walks, rock formations to explore and romantic woodland walks. Plumpton Rocks, Wetherby Road, Harrogate, North Yorkshire HG5 8NA
Overlooking the market town of Otley, Chevin Forest Park was designated a local nature reserve in 1989. It reaches heights of 280m above sea level, which give you some unreal views of the Wharfe Valley.
The nature reserve is comprised of over 400 acres of woodland and crags to explore, which means no visit will be the same. Explore its natural beauty and get lost in this thick woodland area in West Yorkshire near Leeds. Chevin Forest Park LS21 3DD
11. Kilburn Forest
Home to the iconic Kilburn White Horse, these ancient woods are one of the most iconic forest walks in Yorkshire. The North York Moors forest is a popular spot for a walk. You can get parked up at the visitor centre before heading out on a walk around the forest that offers one of England’s Finest Views.
You can enjoy panoramic views and amazing ancient woodland as you take in your surroundings in this North York Moor treat. Low Town Bank Rd, Kilburn, Thirsk YO61 4AN
12. Hardcastle Crags – Autumn Walks in Yorkshire
This wooded Pennine valley in West Yorkshire offers a huge 400 acres of woodland between Hebden Bridge and the high moors surrounding it. The National Trust-owned woodland has 15 miles worth of footpaths, so there are plenty of chances to discover tumbling streams, ragged rocks and more in this stunning forest walk in Yorkshire. Gibson Mill, Midgehole Rd, Hebden Bridge HX7 7AW
13. Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden
If you’ve ever visited Fountain’s Abbey, you’ve probably revelled in the beauty that both the structure and its surrounding parkland hold. It’s no secret: we absolutely love it, and its one of our favourite autumn walks in Yorkshire.
The only Yorkshire location to make the list (which, we’ll admit is quite the oversight…), Fountain’s Abbey was praised for its ‘tranquil stately gardens and deer-filled meadows’, alongside the sheer size of the National Trust estate.
The popular destination can be found in Ripon, and consist of not only the Abbey itself, but the Studley Royal Water Gardens, too, which sit right by the Yorkshire Dales’ River Skell.