If you’re looking for an escape in God’s Own Country this summer, we’ve got some idyllic spots for you to head over to. From sleep towns to bustling markets, we’ve got the prettiest, most beautiful towns that Yorkshire has to offer. There is a list of Yorkshire towns each with its own personality and local shops that you won’t find anywhere else. As well as some great restaurants, pubs and food for you to get stuck into on your holidays.
1. Grassington, North Yorkshire
As well as a bustling cobbled market square, that is fringed by shops offering local foods, speciality gifts and arts and crafts, the Yorkshire town of Grassington has some beautiful natural beauty to admire, such as the Linton Falls.
It is just a stone’s throw from some of the Yorkshire Dales’ most famous things to see such as Bolton Abbey, Malham Cove and more, making it a great place to stay and the decent pubs with local beers help as well. It is also famous for being home to the fictional village of Danby from the hit TV series ‘All Creatures Great and Small‘.
2. Skipton, North Yorkshire
Otherwise known as the ‘Gateway to the Yorkshire Dales’, Skipton is a beautiful Market Town that has tonnes to offer its visitors. As well as being a busy Yorkshire town where you can enjoy a range of restaurants, pubs and bars, Skipton is also full of historical importance including its Thanet Canal, also known as the Springs Branch, which is a short branch of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.
Whether it is visiting Skipton Castle for a history lesson, taking in its local markets on market days, or taking a lovely boat trip along the idyllic canal, you’ll never be short of things to do. It also has some beautiful bars and local produce to get stuck into, making it one of The Yorkshireman’s favourite places to visit.
3. Beverley, East Riding of Yorkshire
Set in the East Riding of Yorkshire, Beverley is a beautiful historic city, that is set in the countryside. You can enjoy a walk and an ice cream on the Westwood, before heading into town to enjoy some alfresco dining, and a few drinks from either one of their nice restaurants, bars or traditional pubs.
Visiting for a special occasion? Beverley is on our list of Yorkshire towns when it comes to an unforgettable dining experience. Why not get booked into the Michelin-Starred restaurant Pipe & Glass for an unforgettable experience?
4. Harrogate, North Yorkshire
The historical spa town in North Yorkshire, just east of the Yorkshire Dales is popular with tourists, and with good reason. As well as its heritage as a fashionable spa town and its old-fashioned vibes, similar to that of its city counterpart York.
It is one of the most beautiful towns in North Yorkshire to wander around and take in – especially the beautiful Stray, which is a public parkland in the centre of Harrogate. It also has some fantastic bars and restaurants to try, when you’ve finished a tour.
5. Knaresborough, North Yorkshire
If you missed out on a trip to Italy like us this summer, then Knaresborough is the next best option. With its labyrinth of medieval cobbled streets and lustrous history, it is the perfect place to visit. Dating back to the 5th century, it is one of Yorkshire’s prettiest market towns.
Due to its unique location perched above the River Nidd, it has everything to offer. Enjoy a calming row out in your own boat benath the beautiful viaduct before enjoying an ice cream or a glass of vino next to the river – before heading back up to the town centre and its boutique shops.
6. Malton, North Yorkshire
The town of Malton in North Yorkshire is seen as Yorkshire’s Food Capital, with a range of independent and artisan shops and restaurants They’re passionate about food and it shows. Artisan grocers, producers, and independent shops & create high-quality places to eat. So, if you’re a foodie then the beautiful town of Malton is the place for you.
As well as that, the historic market town is seen as the gateway to the stunning Yorkshire coastline and a great base for visiting some great attractions around the area.
7. Settle, North Yorkshire
The gateway to the three peaks – Settle is a beautiful Yorkshire town to visit in the Craven district of the Yorkshire Dales. It is surrounded by glorious limestone countryside that could take away from the town’s beauty, but the quaint little town has its own character that is worth exploring.
Explore the history of the Settle-Carlisle railway, before enjoying some great food from one of its independent eateries, and a pint in a nice traditional pub.
8. Ilkley, West Yorkshire
On Ilkla Moor Baht’at! Ilkley is a spectacular West Yorkshire town overlooked by the stunning Ilkley Moors and is a beautiful place to visit, whether you use it as a base to explore the surrounding countryside or venture into the town to learn its spa town history.
It’s a brilliant place to relax. It has a range of independent shops, restaurants and boutique shops to amble around before heading to the famous Betty’s Cafe and Tea Rooms for a taste of Yorkshire.
9. Pickering, North Yorkshire
Pickering is one of the Yorkshire towns found in the North York Moors National Park and is known as the gateway to the North York Moors. And, much like its fellow towns frequenting this list, it is full of independent shops and markets, as well as surrounded by natural wonders.
Its market is vibrant and packed full of great products and making it one of the most beautiful towns in Yorkshire. Make sure you visit Pickering Castle for your fill of history. It has stood over the town since the 13th century. There is also the amazing North York Moors Railway to visit – the glorious heritage railway is not to be missed.
10. Northallerton, North Yorkshire
Known for being set in Herriot country, which has risen in popularity once more due to the success of Channel 5’s reboot of All Creatures Great and Small, the Yorkshire town of Northallerton is a great countryside escape. As well as being a bustling market town, it has fantastic walks and picturesque villages at its doorstep.
It is also a great place for history as its beautiful Mount Grace Priory, House and Gardens is just a few miles away. The monastery in North Yorkshire is set in the woodlands within the North York Moors. North Allerton also has one of the oldest pubs in Yorkshire The Fleece Inn, which was once visited by Charles Dickens
11. Richmond, North Yorkshire
Set beside the River Swale the market town of Richmond in North Yorkshire is a romantic place to visit with its beautiful old-fashioned castle overlooking to town. Richmond is also known for holding one of England’s largest cobbled market squares. It’s full of quaint cafes and traditional pubs perfect for a weekend away.
You can also take a walk down by the river and visit the waterfalls near the castle and through the magical woodland. The castle gardens are also things of beauty that are well worth visiting as well.
12. Whitby, North Yorkshire
Home of Dracula, 199 steps, Whitby Abbey and the best fish & chips you’ll ever try at Magpie Cafe, the Yorkshire town of Whitby is the ultimate seaside town. With breathtaking views, historic importance and a range of fantastic events including the Whitby Goth Festival is one of Yorkshire’s biggest tourist spots.
But, it’s not just a seaside town, nearby fish villages of Staithes, Robin Hood Bay and Runsiwkc Bay will send you back in time with their untouched and peaceful views, quaint cottages and rustic feel. They’re also a part of the Cleveland Way, a famous walk that hikers take on every year.
13. Hawes, North Yorkshire
Hawes is an idyllic market town in the Yorkshire Dales National Park. It’s unique because of its location near to England’s highest single-drop waterfall and, the fact it has a beautiful waterfall right between its houses created by Gayle Beck as it makes its journey into the countryside from the River Ure.
It is also the birthplace of the most famous cheese on earth Wensleydale, which is made at the Wensleydale Creamery. The classic animation Wallace & Gromit helped make it the popular pop culture cheese it has become. That in itself makes it a point of interest to visit alongside charming stone houses and the rolling countryside that surrounds it.
Wetherby is 12 miles from York and roughly the same distance from Leeds. A lovely historical town, it’s been ranked as among the best places to live in the north of England. Among the star attractions is Wetherby Racecourse, an excellent selection of boutiques and a month-long cultural festival that’s been running every October since 1977. The riverside is an especially beautiful part of town and worth checking out, too.
The town’s history mostly revolves around being an important stop on the Great North Road. Wetherby Bridge, spanning the River Wharfe, is a Grade II listed structure and is surrounded by old coaching inns, many of which still serve travelling visitors.
15. Hebden Bridge
Hebden Bridge has been variously named “the greatest town in Europe”, the “4th funkiest town in the world”, and the UK’s “lesbian capital”. Located west of Halifax, at the confluence of the River Calder and the Hebden Water, the market town combines an industrial past with beautiful natural surroundings.
Among Hebden Bridge’s star attractions are the nearby Hardcastle Crags, a beautiful waterfront and an unusually large number of great independent shops. The town has a generally artsy vibe and a good selection of cafés and pubs.
Halifax has had a recent renaissance with the BBC’s popular drama Gentleman Jack, which tells the tale of Anne Lister, one of the first married lesbians in England, and also Channel 4’s Ackley Bridge, which tells the life of school kids in Halifax.
Anne Lister’s home of Shiben Park is a beautiful place to visit as is the Piece Hall which also puts on major events all year round as well. It was voted one of England’s worst places to live one year but the town has many historical and cultural milestones in its tenure that are well worth exploring if you choose to visit.
The most famous place to visit when you head over to the mill town of Huddersfield is the famous landmark on Castle Hill, Victoria Tower. The walk around the top of the hill is stunning with amazing views across the Pennines. Huddersfield has some fantastic pubs and is part of the famous Transpennine Ale Trail which runs from Leeds to Manchester.
Greenhead park offers a fantastic opportunity to have a wander its close to the Yorkshire towns centre and has been open since 1884 still drawing people to unwind to this day.
Another of the Herriot towns, Thirsk is a charming Yorkshire market town that offers a wonderful base for exploring the North Yorkshire countryside and sits in Hambleton District, which is known for its beauty. Its untouched vibe gives it its tourist pull.
It’s the home and literary inspiration of James Herriot’s novel series which were inspired by his veterinary work in the area, the books are still inspiring TV adaptations to this day.